Boundless Theatre Company Gives Maria Irene Fornes' MUD A Rare Revival, Opening Tonight
Boundless Theatre Company will present a revival of María Irene Fornés' MUD - the first time this seminal drama by the 9-time Obie winner has been seen in New York since 1999. The production will be directed by Elena Araoz. Previews began October 5 at Teatro Círculo in the East Village with press opening slated for tonight, October 12.
MUD paints a desolate portrait of toxic affection and rural poverty. It follows Mae, a tenacious, illiterate young woman earnestly pursuing social mobility through education. Caught between Lloyd, her ill, resentful housemate, and Henry, a self-impressed neighbor-turned-lover, Mae struggles to pursue her personal goals while providing for the men who rely on her. Alternating between passion, cynicism and surprising humor, MUD relentlessly explores the cycle of economic oppression and the struggle of caring for one's own.
"MUD reveals the lives of a discarded class: those without education or easy access to healthcare, fighting for resources among themselves while doing the jobs that nobody else will take," notes director Elena Araoz. "It parallels the lives of many immigrants today, invisible and forgotten in this country. Who wins in this scenario - the resilient immigrants or those who are dead set against their success?"
Casting will be announced shortly. The production team includes María-Cristina Fusté (Lighting Designer/Artistic Director), Regina Garcia (Scenic Designer), Sarita Fellows (Costume Designer), Nathan Leigh (Sound Design/Composer), David Anzuelo (Fight Choreographer), and Amy Palen (Associate Producer).
The winner of nine Obie Awards, María Irene Fornés is a Cuban-American playwright and director. A leading figure of the Off-Off-Broadway movement in the 1960s, she won her first Obie Award in 1965 for Promenade and The Successful Life of 3. She was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize with her play And What of the Night? in 1990. Other notable works include Fefu and Her Friends, Sarita, and Letters from Cuba. In 2002 she earned the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award for a Master American Dramatist. In 1999-2000, Signature Theater devoted a season to her work.
Elena Araoz' most receNT Productions include Octavio Solís' Prospect (Boundless), Dipika Guha's Mechanics of Love (To-by-For Productions), Catherine Filloux's Kidnap Road (La MaMa), Virginia Grise's She-She-She (Ice Factory Festival, New Ohio), Hilary Bettis' Alligator (New Georges and The Sol Project), Warren Leight's Union Square Incident (The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway, American Airlines Theatre), and Two Arms and a Noise (Bucharest International Theatre Platform). The Drama League named Araoz the inaugural Beatrice Terry Artist-In-Residence where she completed her play Plastic Drastic, which she also directed for Omaha's Rose Theatre. Other directing credits include Bystanders for Anna Deavere Smith and the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, Architecture of Becoming (Women's Project), Natalia Naman's Lawnpeople (Cherry Lane Mentor Project), Li Tong Chen's The Power (Beijing), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Prague Shakespeare Festival). Opera credits include La Traviata (New York City Opera at BAM's Howard Gilman Opera House), Lucia di Lammermoor (Opera North), Falstaff (Brooklyn Philharmonic at BAM), and choreography for Latin Lovers (Glimmerglass Opera) and La Traviata (Vancouver Opera). Faculty: Princeton University. www.elenaaraoz.com
Boundless Theater Company was founded in 2003 by María-Cristina Fusté and Ailien Ventura. Collaborating with multi-ethnic and multi-lingual artists from different parts of the world, this designer-led organization is committed to creating inquisitive and socially relevant theater. A member of ART New York / Alliance of Resident Theatres, Boundless operates simultaneously in New York and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Past projects include the New York premiere of Octavio Solis' Prospect, the US premiere of Five Kinds of Silence by Shelagh Stephenson and the San Juan premieres of Tracy Letts' Bug and Eve Ensler's The Good Body. In March of 2018, the company will present their 7th revival of Gabriel García Márquez's Chronicle of a Death Foretold in Puerto Rico; the production is seen by thousands of students, among others, annually.
MUD runs October 5 - 29, Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 6:00 p.m. Teatro Círculo is located at 64 East 4th Street, between Second Avenue and Bowery - accessible from the F at 2nd, 6 at Astor PL, N/R 8thStreet. Tickets are $23, available at 212-352-3101 or www.boundlesstheatre.org.