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Bullying Drama RARE BIRDS by Adam Szymkowicz Premieres This Month

The Red Fern Theatre Company will present the World Premiere of RARE BIRDS by Adam Szymkowicz (Clown Bar, Hearts Like Fists, Pretty Theft, Nerve). Directed by Scott Ebersold, (The View UpStairs, Nerve) performances begin March 23 at The Theater at the 14th Street Y in the East Village.

Sixteen-year-old Evan Wills is an avid bird watcher who wears colorful songbird shirts to school despite the constant antagonism it brings him. Evan's mother just wants Evan to be normal, and happy -and normal-- and get along with her new boyfriend. While Evan summons the courage to talk to Jenny Monroe (whose locker is next to his), troubled bully Dylan has something darker in mind. After some stupid choices and unexpected results, Evan learns that the worst thing you can do in high school is admit you love something. RARE BIRDS is a play about adolescent violence and your mother's new boyfriend.

RARE BIRDS stars An-Li Bogan, Robert Buckwalter, George Colligan, Tracey Gilbert (Bedbugs!!!, Dillingham City at Playwrights Horizons, The Adding Machine at The Public), Jake Glassman (Percy Jackson in TheatreworksUSA's The Lightning Thief) and Dylan Guerra with production stage management by Jodi M. Witherell, set by Andrew Mannion, lighting by Derek Van Heel, and sound by Andy Evan Cohen.

Praised as "one of the leading theatrical voices of his generation" by New York Press and "someone to watch" by TheaterMania, Adam Szymkowicz's plays have been produced throughout the U.S., and in Canada, England, Greece, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia, Germany, Slovenia and Lithuania. His work has been presented or developed at such places as MCC Theater, Ars Nova, South Coast Rep, Playwrights Horizons, LCT3, LAByrinth Theater Company, The Lark, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, Primary Stages and The New Group. Published plays include Pretty Theft, Food For Fish, Hearts Like Fists, Clown Bar, The Why Overhead, Deflowering Waldo, Adventures of Super Margaret, and Nerve. Szymkowicz is a two-time Lecomte du Nouy Prize winner, a member of the Dramatists Guild, Writer's Guild of America, and was a member of Primary Stages' Dorothy Strelsin New American Writer's Group, the MCC Playwright's Coalition and of the first Ars Nova Play Group. He served twice as Playwright in Residence at the William Inge Center, received a grant from the CT Commission on Culture & Tourism, and has been commissioned by South Coast Rep, Rising Phoenix Rep, Texas State University, The NOLA Project and Flux Theater Ensemble. Szymkowicz has interviewed over 900 playwrights on his blog. He is currently the Lit Manager at Juilliard.

Scott Ebersold is a theatre director and recent Artistic Associate of Off-Broadway's Classic Stage Company. His directing credits include: The View UpStairs by Max Vernon at the Lynne Redgrave Theater, Charles L. Mee's trilogy Imperial Dreams for Classic Stage Company's First Look Festival, Tony Kushner's A Bright Room Called Day for Columbia Stages at the Connelly Theater, Children at Play by Jordan Seavey (CollaborationTown), Nerve by Adam Szymkowicz, Anne Carson's Orestes at The Miller Theatre, NYMF's Explorers at Signature Center, America, You Kill Me by Joshua Conkel, The End of Days by Jeffrey James Keyes, Paper Cranes by Kari Bentley-Quinn, Edgar and Patrick by Ken Urban, as well as the silent concerto (Outstanding Director at FringeNYC), the october crisis, marea (at HERE), and expat/inferno (Outstanding Production at FringeNYC) by Alejandro Morales. He assisted directors Tina Landau at Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago and John Doyle at CSC. He as directed two films: The Moment (Gotham Screen Festival Premiere) and Quartet, as well as the pilot for the web series Raptured. Scott is Founding Artistic Director of Packawallop Productions and alum of Lincoln Center Theater's Director's Lab and the Tectonic Theater's Literary Department. He holds a BFA in Drama from NYU and an MFA in Theatre Directing from Columbia University.

The Red Fern Theatre Company, now under Executive Artistic Director Melanie Moyer Williams, was founded in 2006 with a mission to provoke social awareness and change through theatrical productions and outreach. A portion of the proceeds from each play produced is donated to a different philanthropic organization, Red Fern has produced five World Premieres, three New York premieres, ten revivals, four evenings of commissioned short plays, and countless staged readings. Past productions include The Radiant by Shirley Lauro, Irreversible by Jack Karp, Since Africa by Mia McCullough, We in Silence Hear A Whisper by Jon Kern, Good Egg by Dorothy Fortenberry, and A Shot Away by Donna Flumanro-Farley. Four of Red Fern's premieres have led to publication by major theatrical publishers, and its productions have been nominated for AUDELCO and New York Innovative Theater Awards. It is a resident company at the Theater at the 14th Street Y.

RARE BIRDS runs March 23 - April 9, Thursday - Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 3pm with an added performance on Monday, April 3 at 7pm. The Theatre at the 14th Street Y is located at 344 East 14th Street (near the corner of 1st Avenue -- accessible from the L train at 1st Ave). Running time is 100 minutes. Tickets are $20, available at 212-352-3101 or www.redferntheatre.org.


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