BEE, A Startling New Drama Runs at HB Theater June 8th thru 24th

By: May. 17, 2018
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BEE, A Startling New Drama Runs at HB Theater June 8th thru 24th

BEE, a new work created by Melody Erfani and written by Sean Michael Welch, will be presented by HB Studio in partnership with LES Shakespeare Company at HB Theater (124 Bank Street) starting June 8.Melody Erfani, artistic director of the LES Shakespeare Company directs.

BEE is the story of Izat, a young Iranian girl trapped in an abusive marriage in the 1940s. After years of suffering both physically and mentally at the hands of her spouse she knows the only way she will survive is if she is able to leave him. In an unprecedented move her father is able to use his influence to secure a divorce for her. Moving back and forth in time from 1940 to 2009, the story weaves together Izat's struggles on her path toward a better life. Based on a harrowing true story, BEE takes further inspiration from a collection of interviews with Middle Eastern immigrants and refugees.

Now in its fourth year, LES Shakespeare Company has taken on another challenge. Using Shakespeare as their impetus, they are producing new work that is timely, provocative and eloquent in both writing and humanity. In keeping with 21st century sensibility, BEE is a piece intended to start dialogue and discussion. First developed as part of a residency at Barns Art Collective in Maine, the play continued as a work in progress for an HB Studio Residency Project in the Fall of 2017. Now in collaboration with HB Studio the play returns for this special three week engagement continuing to invite industry comment and interest with its artistry and political/social relevance.

Melody Erfani is co-founder and artistic director of LES Shakespeare Company. She has an MFA in Directing from The Actors Studio Drama School and was a participant of the 2013 Lincoln Center Directors Lab. Prior to that she served an internship with Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London under the direction of Mark Rylance. She has directed productions of Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet and Antigone for LES Shakespeare. Other credits include 97 Orchard Street (Creator/Director with 5D Productions) All An Act (Edinburgh Fringe Festival) and Othello (The Looking Glass Forum).

Sean Michael Welch was awarded the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival Short Play Award for Earl the Vampire and won the KCACTF Ten Minute Play Competition for Charlston's Finger. His published work includes Earl the Vampire (Samuel French), Try Not to Step on the Naked Man (Francis Ford Coppola's Zoetrope: All Story) and Boise, Idaho (Playscripts Inc.).

The extraordinary all female Middle Eastern cast features Buket Gulbeyaz, Dana Hart Lubeck, Vered Hankin, Aryana Sedarati, Cemre Su Salur, Brittany Zaken, Muge Karagulle and Rakel Aroyo. The creative team is Sasha Hawkins (composer, sound design) Will Sawyer (set design), Christina Watanabe (lighting design), Dina El-Aziz (costumes) and Ahmed Maaty (choreographer).

BEE will be performed at HB Theater (124 Bank Street between Greenwich and Washington Streets-1 or 2 Train to Christopher Street--Sheridan Square) on Fridays 6/8, 15, 22 and Saturdays 6/9, 16, 23 at 7PM with Sunday matinees 6/10, 17, 24 at 3PM. Tickets are free but reservations are strongly advised. For reservations go to https://beejune2018eventbrite.com, or at www.lessshakespeareco.org and https://hbstudio.org/bee-june-2018.

 



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