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2015 Planet Connections Theatre Festivity Kicks Off Next Month; Lineup Announced!

2015 Planet Connections Theatre Festivity Kicks Off Next Month; Lineup Announced!

Planet Connections Theatre Festivity, the country's premier socially-conscious, eco-friendly arts festival, is proud to announce its seventh season of plays, musicals & staged readings, with all shows taking place at The Paradise Factory, 64 East 4th St, between 2nd Avenue & Bowery. Tickets for Full Production shows are $18, with general admission seating. Tickets for the Staged Reading Series are free, but a ticket is required for entry. Tickets are available for purchase online at www.ovationtix.com/trs/cal/27385, or by calling OvationTix at 866-811-4111.

This year's Festivity selections encompass the worlds of sci-fi, romantic comedy, memoirs, life before and after death, and social justice. Artists returning to this year's Festivity include Rising Sun Theatre Company (The Firebird) and Ego Actus (Atlantis Unearthed, Emerald Girl and Committed).

Highlights of this year's Festivity include The Long Rail North, about an African-American Civil War soldier who risks everything to save a young girl; Chokehold, in which five friends go from marching against police brutality to seeking their own justice; The Education Project, drawn from hundreds of hours of interviews with teachers, parents and students about the state of American schools; In Our Own Voice: Women Veterans Tell Their Story, drawn from actual stories from women who have returned from serving in Iraq and Afghanistan; and Citizen Cyborg, a hybrid adaptation of a groundbreaking text on how transhuman technologies like cloning and stem cell research are outpacing legislation and democracy.

The Staged Readings Series is headlined by Kidnap Road, written by noted award-winning playwright Catherine Filloux, about Ingrid Betancourt, the Colombian politician & anti-corruption activist who was held hostage in the jungle for over 6 years. Other notable selections are Committed, a historical imagining of the last two days of activist Theo Van Gogh's life before his murder; and Blind Crest, about the real-life romance between a convicted cop killer and a prison guard, and the fallout that results.

With 31 full-length productions, 10 staged readings, a two-night film festival and countless music festival events, this year's Festivity truly has something for everyone. As part of the Festivity, each production has partnered with charitable organizations like the ASPCA, Democracy Now, Women For Women International, and Hospice of New York to raise money and awareness for their important causes.

Planet Connections Festivity is designed to invoke the power of art in motivating philanthropy, community outreach and social change. Within the Festivity are multiple theater, film and music festivals. Planet Connections' artists use their work to shed light on the causes that matter, while inspiring audiences to get involved. All of our artists raise awareness for an organization/topic of their own selection. We are also the country's first eco-friendly arts festivity as all our artists work to create eco-conscious art by revising their marketing, design and rehearsal techniques. Planet Connections artists are introduced to a community of like-minded theater makers, film makers and music makers. The relationships formed during the festivity allow our artists to find new audiences and forge new partnerships. www.planetconnections.org


FULL LENGTH PRODUCTIONS:

Aftermath

Benefiting National Disaster Search Dog Foundation

Written and Directed by JC Svec

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Aftermath explores, in a mostly comedic way, very different perspectives on the end of life and what follows in the afterlife. Will corporate sponsorship be needed to help with expenses? What problems do we leave for our loved ones? Are we really deceased when we're buried and... well, then where do we go from there? Logical situations will be presented in a very uniquely illogical way in Aftermath.

Friday, 6/17/15, 630pm

Monday, 6/20/15, 500pm

Friday, 6/24/15, 830pm

Monday, 6/27/15, 215pm

Blanche on a Winter's Eve

Benefiting Gay Men's Health Crisis

Written by J.P. Makowski

Directed by Danny Gorman

Downstairs Theatre, 75 minutes

After the appearance of a heavenly vision on Christmas Eve promises the arrival of a perfect and true love, our hero(ine) journeys through snow, sleet, and a den of hipsters, all in pursuit of romance. Will it be found before Christmas morning or was the whole adventure in vain?

Tuesday, 6/21/15, 900pm

Tuesday, 6/28/15, 800pm

Saturday, 7/2/15, 700pm

Tuesday, 7/5/15, 930pm

Monday, 7/11/15, 315pm

Black Hole Wedding

Benefiting Natural Resources Defense Council

Written by Katherine Brann Fredricks and Paul Edward Nelson

Directed by Katherine Brann Fredricks

Upstairs Theatre, 120 minutes

Oil baron Dean captures and warehouses renewable energy discoveries. Alpha-geek Raymond fights back, with true love and a black hole trash compactor. Will Dean feed Raymond fiancé to the black hole, in his campaign to promote capitalism by crushing competition? Find out in the zany musical satire Black Hole Wedding.

Friday, 6/26/15, 700pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 845pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 1200pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 400pm

Blizzard A Love Story / Trust In Chariots / Years May Go By

Upstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Blizzard A Love Story

Benefiting Planned Parenthood

Written by Melissa Skirboll

Directed by Lori Kee

In this serio-comic look at love and letting go, an epic snowstorm shuts the city down. With no way to get home, Ian shows up at his ex-girlfriend's door looking for a place to crash and a chance to revive their relationship. With the weather forcing them together, Ian and Lacey rehash the past. And though it's clear they love each other, they are unable to find any shelter in each other - for them the storm outside reflects their love; beautiful and oh so destructive.

Trust In Chariots

Benefiting God's Love We Deliver

Written and Directed by Roderic Wachovsky

When a mysterious young man X answers a Craigslist ad to help Grant, nephew of an elderly man provide proper care, he becomes a catalyst for fear, distrust and violence. X is the unknown factor. Motives are called into question. Earl lives in a state of mental confusion and deterioration. He summons the life he shared with his deceased partner and finds his own behavior wanting. In particular, the government's violation of his privacy when neither decency nor law could protect him, is a trauma with which he has never fully come to terms. Suspicion and concealment of the past become entwined with doubt and misgiving in the present.

Years May Go By

Benefiting City Meals on Wheels

Written by Julie Hays

Directed by Rod McLachlan

What if, years later, you randomly encounter "the one that got away" would you still feel the flame? What would you want to know? What would you dare to ask? These are the questions Ben and Laila face one fateful day outside the subway station.

Wednesday, 6/24/15, 745pm

Thursday, 6/25/15, 500pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 1200pm

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 500pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 920pm

Buddhas Are Screaming In China

Benefiting Big Life Foundation

Written and Directed by Maggie Surovell

Choreographed by Jill Echo

Upstairs Theatre, 50 minutes

Buddhas are Screaming in China is a play about love, luck, loss, and Elephants. Hai'ou is studying the conservation of endangered species when she is forced to confront her mother who buys ivory Buddhas for good luck. As we follow Hai'ou's journey, we witness a family of life size elephant puppets trying to survive.

Tuesday, 6/23/15, 800pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 1230pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 600pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 800pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 645pm

Monday, 7/7/15, 715pm

The Colonel's Wife

Benefiting THE LIT Fund

Written by Mario Fratti

Directed by Roi Escudero

Upstairs Theatre, 70 minutes

An isolated woman in exile confides her secret fantasies to the audience. Her romantic journey deceives her. Beneath passion and desire, a bare cruel truth surprises her. Sexuality, politics and darker comedy mesh cabaret, performance-art and film to tell a tale of hope led astray.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 300pm

Thursday, 6/25/15, 930pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 700pm

Sunday, 6/28/14, 545pm

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 600pm

Chokehold

Benefiting Democracy Now

Written by Anthony P. Pennino

Directed by Alberto Bonilla

Upstairs Theatre, 75 minutes

When marching against police brutality no longer seems enough, five friends launch a desperate plan to rebalance the scales of justice. What they will discover is that violence - even if the cause seems righteous - can come at too high a cost.

Friday, 6/19/15, 915pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 400pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 730pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 230pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 730pm

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 630pm

Citizen Cyborg

Benefiting Democracy Now

Adapted and Directed by Neal Utterback

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

In 2004, Dr. James Hughes published Citizen Cyborg, one of the groundbreaking texts on transhumanism and democracy. In this inspiring text, Hughes suggests that transhuman technologies-technologies like stem cell research, cloning, and artificial intelligence that radically redefine humanness and personhood-are emerging and evolving at an exponential rate. Our democracy, on the other hand, is lagging behind and is currently not equipped to ensure that these technologies will be available to the most people and safely regulated. Our adaptation of Citizen Cyborg is, in itself, a kind of cyborg. It is a hybrid fusion of Shakespeare, Greek tragedy, and seminal works in science fiction and fantasy, as well as Hughes' text. The play examines the implications of these technologies and changing societal and ethical implications of such advances. To understand the future we must look to the past.

Saturday, 6/27/15, 415pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 145pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 630pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 530pm

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 730pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 700pm

Corner's Grove

Benefiting WIN [Women in Need]

Written by Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin

Directed by Gemma Kaneko

Upstairs Theatre, 120 minutes

A reverent nod to Our Town by Thornton Wilder, this play follows a group of young people in the town of Corner's Grove from high school into adulthood as they deal with leaving home, falling in love, gender identity, and the death of Whitney Houston. It's a story about growing up and hometowns, friendship and drinking in parking lots.

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 700pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 330pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 415pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 830pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 900pm

Crave

Benefiting To Write Love On Her Arms

Written by Sarah Kane

Directed by Sarah M. Chichester

Upstairs Theatre, 75 minutes

A fractured timeline and ruptured soul, begins at both ends and meets in violent discord. Crave charts the disintegration of a human mind under the pressures of love, loss, and desire.

Sunday, 6/21/15, 500pm

Friday, 6/26/15, 545pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 900pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 500pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 1200pm

Crystal Romance

Benefiting NIDA The National Institute of Drug Abuse

Written and Directed by Lenny Schwartz

Downstairs Theatre, 70 minutes

Crystal Romance is a play about two meth addicts who are struggling to find their souls. Rachel meets Charlie at a party. She is very young and has never even had a drink of alcohol, much less tried any drugs. Charlie convinces Rachel to try crystal meth with him. She becomes instantly addicted. She also falls in love with Charlie. What follows is a hard hitting, emotional look at meth addiction, love, and humanity. Less than ten percent of those who try meth ever recover. This play is about the hope of one.

Friday, 6/26/15, 400pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 615pm

Sunday, 6/28/15,1200pm

Cygnus ISA Summer Con5t3ll4tion

Benefiting World Wildlife Foundation

Playwright Steven Mark Tenney

Co-Director Steven Mark Tenney

Co-Director Susan Tenney

Upstairs Theatre, 110 minutes

Teich Lumen, spaceship pilot, is called upon to return a "back-up copy" of Earth to the Cygnus Star System. En route he encounters a telepathic prodigy, the darkly shrouded Inner System Authority, a band of Cygnian artists covertly shooting an art film on Earth, two college students, and his muse.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 445pm

Friday, 6/26/15, 430pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 430pm

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 745pm

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 845pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 430pm

Dutch

Benefiting Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation

Written by Paul Weissman

Directed by Fred Backus

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Dutch begins with a young couple on a first date. They are having a grand time. The check arrives and after some awkward hesitation, they split it. From this simple act flowers a romantic comedy about expectations, acceptance compromise and the lengths we will go to resist the terrifying clarion call of love.

Wednesday, 6/17/15, 430pm

Friday, 6/19/15, 700pm

Tuesday, 6/23/15, 800pm

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 500pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 100pm

Easier Said Than Done

Benefiting The Hunker Down INNitiative

Written by Paul DeSena

Directed by Kristen Penner

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Five years after college, Nathan and Catherine's marriage needs an overhaul. As they and their college friends, Nikki and Justin, struggle to rebuild their relationships in the shadow of a destructive affair, everyone must make the choice whether to live the old life you planned, or create the new life you want.

Thursday, 6/18/15, 800pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 300pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 400pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 830pm

Thursday, 7/9/15, 400pm

The Education Project

Benefiting (to be announced)

Produced by MCVTS Theatre and Pegasus51/Theatre

Directed by Maria Aladren

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Few other subjects raise more controversy and diverse opinions than the state of education in the USA. And yet no other topic is more relevant to parents, students and teachers in the education system. MCVTS Theatre students took upon themselves to gather hundreds of hours of interviews of all these stakeholders of the education system and turned that material into a raw, unapologetic look at day-to-day education from all three perspectives-with their own music thrown in for good measure. Join us, as the future generation of leaders and artists talk about their own views of getting an education in the USA.

Tuesday, 6/23/15, 600pm

Thursday, 7/2/15, 300pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 1130am

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 600pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 300pm

Elise: A New Musical

Benefiting Safe Horizon

Music and Lyrics by Jamen Nanthakumar

Book and Lyrics by Liana Wright-Mark

Directed by Katherine Wilkins

Upstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Elise is a folk-western musical about a fourteen year-old girl, Elise, who is brought up in a brothel in 1910 Stockton, California. After her mother's mysterious death, the Madame of the Brothel, Vera, takes Elise under her wing, where she finds love, sex, and the lust of revenge.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 100pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 600pm

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 400pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 800pm

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 400pm

The Firebird

Benefiting Wounded Warrior Project

Written by Tim Errickson

Directed by Brian Gillepsie

Upstairs Theatre, 120 minutes

Dan comes home to Brooklyn neighborhood of his youth with a mission to stop his best friend, Ricky, from destroying himself. Ricky thinks he's the prince of the block, despite looming debt and a creeping sense of danger all around. Pride, love, lust, and memory challenge whether either of them will be able to outrun their fate.

Thursday, 6/25/15, 700pm

Thursday, 7/2/15, 500pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 230pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 500pm

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 815pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 200pm

Hopeless

Benefiting The Children's Aid Society of New York City

Written and Directed By Vinny Eden Ortega

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Inspired by true stories, Hopeless tells the story of siblings Ren and Van who are thrust into the inner-city kingdom of Wonderland. Through this incisive narrative, Hopeless gives voices to the untold stories of our nation's adolescents surviving, struggling, and ruling the inner-city.

Thursday, 6/18/15, 400pm

Saturday, 6/20/15, 1100am

Thursday, 6/25/15, 730pm

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 630pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 730pm

Thursday, 7/9/15, 600pm

In Our Own Voice: Women Veterans Tell Their Story

Benefiting Women for Women International

Written by Beverley Coyle

Directed by Colleen Britton

Downstairs Theatre, 60 minutes

What do you do when you're a young woman and a recent veteran - when the hell of war is being eclipsed by the hell of coming home? In Our Own Voice is a lively and funny but devastating interchange between young women who've just come back from Iraq and Afghanistan. They know way more about war than their families want to know they know.

Wednesday, 6/24/15, 430pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 500pm

Thursday, 7/2/15, 845pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 600pm

Thursday, 7/9/15, 800pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 145pm

The Long Rail North

Benefiting Rebuilding Together

Written and Directed by Michael Hagins

Downstairs Theatre, 80 minutes

The Long Rail North takes place during the brutal days of 1863, when the Carolinas were ripped apart by the Civil War. Private Thomas Morgan (Xavier Rodney) leaves his regiment to rescue a little girl named Molly Barnes (Morgan Patton) from her plantation, ripped apart and set ablaze by a nearby battle. Taking her on one of the few remaining working trains, Thomas risks everything to protect her from both Union and Confederate armies who are pursuing them both with merciless determination.

Sunday, 6/21/15, 100pm

Thursday, 6/25/15, 430pm

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 700pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 400pm

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 800pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 500pm

Lost In Place

Benefiting Coalition for the Homeless

Written & Directed by Secondhand Theatre Company

Upstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Lost In Place is a collaborative exploration by the Secondhand Theatre Company, a look back at the "Now" through the neo-vaudevillian orators of a future generation. Return to the birth of storytelling with us! Dance around fires while aiming a playful, yet critical eye at our modern society.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 11am

Sunday, 6/21/15, 1200pm

Monday, 6/29/15, 400pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 1200pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 915pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 630pm

The Other Day

Benefiting Bacchus Network

Written by Mark Jason Williams

Directed by Andrew Block

Upstairs Theatre, 70 minutes

Winner of the Planet Connections Award for Outstanding Playwriting, The Other Day is a poignant and comedic drama in which four characters embark on an unexpected journey through love, insecurities, addiction, betrayal, loss and redemption that will redefine their relationships, and themselves, in surprising ways.

Friday, 6/19/15, 730pm

Punk Grandpa

Benefiting The New York Branch of The Alzheimer's Association

Written by Laura Scruggs

Directed by Emmi Hilger

Downstairs Theatre, 60 minutes

Punk Grandpa is the story of how Laura did not fit into her family, church or other social groups and how her grandpa helped her find her identity and realize that it's okay to be different. The show takes place over one magical weekend when she was 5 3/4 years old and exhibits her grandpa's unique sense of humor and reckless, abandoned approach to life! The story is portrayed through storytelling, music, dance, family photos & film footage and a little bit of puppetry.

Friday, 6/19/15, 900pm

Saturday, 6/20/15, 300pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 645pm

Searching For Connection: A Tom Slot Musical Theatre Review

Benefiting ASPCA

Written and Directed by Tom Slot

Upstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

An evening of musical theater featuring songs and scenes from three Tom Slot musicals: Dream 70, an adaption of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream set in Athens, Georgia in 1970; The Father of Songs, a rock opera based on the myth of Orpheus; and the children's musical Girls Can't Be Superheroes. Love. Pain. Rock n' Roll.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 730pm

Sitting Regal By The Window

Benefiting Democracy Now

Written and Directed by Aya Aziz

Downstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

A self divided among stories can only be made whole through storytelling. Aya Aziz grew up between social worlds, some across the ocean, some across the street. Sitting Regal By The Window is her semi-autobiographical debut, a performance of exaggerated memories and original songs from her life as a Ghetto-Hippie-Arab-Commie-China Doll. Aya tells her stories as a way of reclaiming history and fighting the erasure of the communities that shaped her.

Thursday, 7/2/15, 500pm

Saturday, 7/4/15, 130pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 830pm

Friday, 7/10/15, 500pm

Sometimes Gay Means Happy

Benefiting Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

Written and Directed by Angela Theresa Egic

Upstairs Theatre, 70 minutes

It's 1988. Tori, a newscaster, announces the heart attack of her estranged Broadway legend father, Victor, during breaking news. Tori soon learns Victor is dying. His last wish is to reunite with his eldest daughter, and meet his only grandchild. Will Tori grant his wish?

Monday, 6/22/15, 730pm

Friday, 6/26/15, 930pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 200pm

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 930pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 500pm

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 530pm

Taking Flight: Songs of Hope

Benefiting Standing on the Side of Love

Written by Sarah Jebian*

*appearing courtesy of Actor's Equity Association (Equity Approved Showcase)

Directed by Robb Hillman

Downstairs Theatre, 60 minutes

Created in 2013 by Unitarian Universalist musician and social activist, Sarah Jebian, Taking Flight tackles the hot button issues of gender equality, reproductive justice, and LGBT equality. This powerful program combines personal stories that nearly everyone can relate to, with glorious music from musical theater and popular genres.

Friday, 6/26/15, 730pm

Saturday, 6/27/15, 800pm

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 430pm

Monday, 7/6/15, 700pm

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 600pm

Tech Support: Circe and J Train

Benefiting The Candle Lighters NYC

Directed by Melissa Meli

Circe, Written by Michael Hagins

J Train, Written by Dianna Tucker Baritot

Downstairs Theatre, 105 minutes

For everyone who spends too much time staring at a phone, or stuck underground on the subway, Circe and J Train explore how technology come-to-life could inspire deeper, more meaningful communication. Two original one-acts dealing with devices, separation, and a little bit of magic.

Saturday, 6/20/15, 800pm

Wednesday, 6/24/15, 600pm

Friday, 6/26/15, 900pm

Wednesday, 7/1/15, 830pm

Sunday, 7/5/15, 300pm

When The Party's Over

Benefiting World Wildlife Foundation

Written by Glory Kadigan

Directed by Eric Mercado

Upstairs Theatre, 90 minutes

Broadway actress Anna takes her mother Adriana on an Alaskan vacation in the hope of repairing their terse relationship. It's "all aboard" as the ladies sail off, but Anna and the other passengers get more than they bargained for on their magical glacial adventure as Anna encounters ghosts from the past

Thursday, 6/18/15, 430pm

Monday, 6/22/15, 845pm

Sunday, 6/28/15, 345pm

Friday, 7/3/15, 600pm

Saturday, 7/11/15, 700pm

Sunday, 7/12/15, 1100am

Wildlife

Benefiting Neighborhood Cats

Written By Hope Weiner

Directed By Sarah M. Chichester

Downstairs Theatre, 60 minutes

A theatrical safari that will blow your mind - but not your budget. Whale Ho!!! Rats! Roaches! Pigs! And a live dinosaur! A sixty-minute voyage of a lifetime.

Thursday, 6/18/15, 600pm

Saturday, 6/20/15, 100pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 1100am

Monday, 6/22/15, 800pm

Women & Children

Benefiting SAGE (Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Transgender Elders)

Written & Directed by Michael Boothroyd

Upstairs Theatre, 60 minutes

After years of dodging obstacles, from prejudice, inequality, plaques, and grindr, a group of NYC gay men realize they landed on their feet. However, when a straight man, separated from his wife and children, interrupts their dinner, they struggle to make sense of the choices they made and the paths they took.

Wednesday, 6/17/15, 745pm

Sunday, 6/21/15, 200pm

Tuesday, 6/23/15, 930pm

Wednesday, 6/24/15, 430pm

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 400pm

Thursday, 7/9/15, 600pm

STAGED READINGS SERIES

Atlantis Unearthed

Benefiting Rainforest Alliance

Written by Cecilia Copeland

Directed by Joan Kane

Upstairs Theatre

Friday, 6/26/15, 1:30pm

Four Manhattanites and a Fairy-Mermaid Cross are making their way through your typical mass shootings, civil unrest and global ecological meltdown, while trying to get laid, when the island cracks open and Atlantis rises to either destroy us or save us from ourselves!

Blind Crest

Benefiting StreetWise Partners

Written by Monet Hurst-Mendoza

Directed by Katherine M. Carter

Upstairs Theatre

Thursday, 7/2/15, 1:30pm

A dark twist on the "boy-meets-girl" and inspired by the unfolding true story of Ronell Wilson and Nancy Gonzalez, Blind Crest forces us to ask, "what is the value of a human life, and at what cost are we willing to fight for it?"

Committed

Benefiting Amnesty International

Written by Natalie Menna

Directed by Joan Kane

Downstairs Theatre

Tuesday, 7/7/15, 1:30pm

Committed is a work of historical fiction about the last two days of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh's life before his murder. When his highly controversial and vulgar documentary - intended to portray the abuse of women under extreme Islam - causes a tremendous uproar in Amsterdam and abroad, Theo spirals rapidly downward. The play explores the collision of an artist's radical temperament and unyielding vision with modern political realities and the inevitable tragedy when uncompromising values clash. Can friendship, family, or love save Theo from his biggest threat- himself?

Emerald Girl

Benefiting Women for Women International

Written by Penny Jackson

Directed by Joan Kane

Downstairs Theatre

Tuesday, 6/30/15, 1:30pm

Dan, an NYU film student, meets pregnant Maureen at a wedding in Ireland. Failing to find her baby's father in New York, Maureen tracks Dan down, only to find out that he is married. Can these two star crossed souls ever find each other?

Let's Call It Osmosis

Benefiting RAINN

Written & Directed by Scott Kesselman

Downstairs Theatre

Wednesday, 7/8/15, 1:30pm

All of this is not by chance. Explore the hidden forces of nature that seek to find balance in the most simple systems, like water through a cell membrane, to the infinitely complex interactions that determine our fate and our perception of life.

Kidnap Road

Benefiting Girl Scouts of NYC

Written by Catherine Filloux

Directed by Stan Cahill

Upstairs Theatre

Saturday, 6/27/15, 2pm

Colombian politician, senator and anti-corruption activist Ingrid Betancourt was held hostage in the jungle for over 6 years. This story is imagined as a two-person play based in part on those events. Written by award-winning playwright Catherine Filloux, Kidnap Road is a poetic drama about a woman's political choice, the trauma of survival and what memory will come to hold.

The artistic team plans to bring the play to Edinburgh in 2016.

Null and Void

Benefiting The Actors Fund

Written by Charles Gersham

Directed by Sarah Chichester

Downstairs Theatre

Thursday, 7/9/15, 1:30pm

Thad, a disbarred lawyer, and Jean, an art history professor, are divorcing. The night before Jean is to move out, Thad presents her with a painting by her favorite artist, and with the artist himself. Will Thad's grand gesture help him win Jean back from the arms of her department chair?

Something Sudden 5wept 0v3r Me

Benefiting World Wildlife Foundation

Playwright Steven Mark Tenney

Co-Directors Steven Mark Tenney & Susan Tenney

Downstairs Theatre

Wednesday, 6/24/15, 1:30pm

Norbit Ufowatchin discovers that both his professor and the fellow graduate student he is romantically smitten with are aliens. They have devised a mission for him- the goal of which is to open a portal and make world changing contact with the Nor, an ultra- advanced civilization mysteriously unnoticed on Earth.

The People From Porlock

Written by Stephen Aubrey

Directed by Jess Chayes

Downstairs Theater

Tuesday, 6/23/15, 1:30pm

Funded by a shadowy cabal of industrialists, magnates and nativists, Porlock Industries exports the greatest product of late-capitalism, Despair, across the developing world. When Tim joins the team, he doesn't plan on staying on too long. But then again, no one at Porlock does. As his work begins to follow him home, Tim and his co-workers must learn to confront their thwarted ambitions, deferred dreams and the inevitable day job that sustains and stifles them all.

Who Mourns for Bob the Goon??

Benefiting Hospice of New York

Written by Joshua Young

Directed by Lucia Bellini

Downstairs Theater

Thursday, 6/25/15, 1:30pm

Many people have fantasized they could become Batman or Superman when they lack the power to right a wrong. But what about someone who decides to be a third-tier character that no one has heard of? ? Who Mourns for Bob the Goon?? is a play in development about a man who believes he is the obscure Joker villain 'Bob the Goon.' The show follows him as he attends a therapy group for individuals who all think they are lesser known characters. Bob starts to unravel after the admittance of a new woman into the group who doesn't quite belong. She causes him to recall his real history as a war veteran coping with psychological trauma, and question the therapy he is receiving.

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