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Epic Players Fall 2021 Season to Feature ALMOST, MAINE and More

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This fall, EPIC returns to the stage as audiences return in-person to cultural and entertainment venues amid the pandemic.

EPIC Players, New York's leading neuro-diverse theatre company, returns to the stage this fall with dynamic performances at Lincoln Center's Big Umbrella Festival, Joe's Pub at The Public, and the Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theatre.

EPIC Players-which stands for empower, perform, include, and create-is a nonprofit theatre company founded five years ago to provide opportunities for performers with developmental disabilities to represent themselves on stage and screen. EPIC seeks to use the performing arts as a vehicle to empower artists with developmental disabilities and pioneer increased inclusion in the arts.

"EPIC Players is committed to providing its members a gateway to employment and career opportunities in the theatre arts," said Aubrie Therrien, Executive Artistic Director at EPIC Players. "Many of our performers are professional actors, competing for roles in the neuro-typical world and achieving great success through their amazing talent, perseverance and dedication to their craft. Be prepared for an unforgettable season."

This fall, EPIC returns to the stage as audiences return in-person to cultural and entertainment venues amid the pandemic. Additionally, EPIC is again presenting both in-person and virtual, neuro-inclusive theater classes, many led by Broadway professionals, that are 100% free to all company members (and available to other interested artists who are not company members for a small fee).

While registration has ended for fall classes, which begin September 20, potential registrants should visit EPIC's website to learn more and discover opportunities for the next series of workshops.

On tap this fall are: Broadway Bound, taught by director, teaching artist, and voiceover artist Lauren Huff; Personal Narrative; EPIC Plays Ensemble; EPIC Essentials; and, Musical Master Class taught by multi-award-winning composer, lyricist, music director, and writer, Scott Evan Davis, whose latest work, Indigo, tells the story of a 16-year-old non-verbal girl with autism. (All participants at in-person events must provide proof of vaccination before classes begin.)

This September, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts welcomes audiences with autism and other developmental disabilities and their families to Big Umbrella Outdoors. The weekend of programming (from Friday, September 17 to Sunday, September 19) is part of Restart Stages, a new outdoor performing arts center on the Lincoln Center campus. Big Umbrella Outdoors is an extension of the 2018 Big Umbrella Festival, an international endeavor that offered performances across New York City for children on the autism spectrum.

On Friday, September 17, Big Umbrella Outdoors kicks off with a special event at 6:00pm on Friday night welcoming teens and young adults for an evening of art, dance and music activities. The evening begins with an offering in the Josie Robertson Plaza from EPIC Players in a performance- Songs and Stories from the Spectrum - about resiliency, empowerment, and hope for the future.

EPIC Players then returns on Saturday, September 18 and Sunday, September 19 with Songs from the Spectrum, a performance at Hearst Plaza/The Grove. Children and their families are invited to experience the festival in two-hour ticketed windows that begins at 11:00am or 2:30pm, each including the same offerings.

Most shows have already sold out, but there are virtual opportunities. Visit LincolnCenter.org/BigUmbrella for more information.

EPIC returns to the popular entertainment venue Joe's Pub at The Public in October with a thrilling show, EPIC Villains: A Wickedly Inclusive Cabaret, on Sunday, October 24 and Monday, October 25, both at 8:00pm. EPIC Players, along with their Broadway friends, perform songs to honor everyone's favorite villains, monsters, and everything in between this Halloween! Audience members are encouraged to attend in costume.

Tickets are $35 (there is a two-drink or $12 food minimum, per person, during shows). Visit https://publictheater.org/productions/joes-pub/2021/e/epic-players/ for tickets and more information.

The fall season caps off with EPIC Players' mainstage, the first-ever neurodiverse performance of Almost, Maine, by John Criani and directed by Travis Burbee, with a preview on Wednesday, December 1 and opening night on Thursday, December 2. The show runs through Sunday, December 12 at the Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theater at A.R.T./NY.

On a cold, clear, moonless night in the middle of winter, all is not quite what it seems in the remote, mythical town of Almost, Maine. As the northern lights hover in the star-filled sky above, Almost's residents find themselves falling in and out of love in unexpected and often hilarious ways. Knees are bruised. Hearts are broken. But The Bruises heal, and the hearts mend-almost-in this delightful midwinter night's dream. It's a show about hope, love, and connection-something we are all seeking as we look into the future.

A full schedule for the show, as well as the cast, will be announced shortly. This show will perform live and be available for streaming. Proceeds from the first preview benefit the New York City Department of Education's District 75 program and sponsor students with disabilities ticket to the performance.

Tickets are $ 25 and $ 55 with VIP gift; Opening night tickets include reception, $75. Learn more at www.epicplayersnyc.org.


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