Flying Carpet Theatre's MEDICINE SHOWDOWN to Begin 10/12 at the East 4th Street Theatre

The Flying Carpet Theatre (FCT) presents the New York premiere of THE Medicine ShowDOWN, a new play by Topher Payne and Adam Koplan that interweaves a traditional story (inspired by Henrik Ibsen's classic "Enemy of the People") with scenes from a turn-of-the-century Medicine Show, complete with tap dance, old time melodrama, country music and vaudevillian comedy. THE Medicine ShowDOWN begins performances October 12 prior to an official press opening of October 16 at the East 4th Street Theatre (83 East 4th Street - btw. Bowery and Second Avenue) in Manhattan.

First presented by FCT in Atlanta, Georgia at the 14th Street Playhouse in 2009, THE Medicine ShowDOWN (which was selected as "Top 10 of 2009" and "Top 50 of the Decade" by Atlanta's "Creative Loafing") is set in small-town Georgia during the 1918 global influenza pandemic, public health is placed at odds with the town's economic interests as a concerned doctor urges the mayor to shut down all public gatherings - including the popular and lucrative local Medicine Show.

Directed by Jessi D. Hill, the cast of THE Medicine ShowDOWN will feature Jay Rhoderick, John Wright, Khalid Hill, Timothy McCown Reynolds, and Susan Louise O'Connor.

The design and production team for Medicine ShowDOWN is James Aitken (scenic designer), Annie Wiegand (lighting designer), Moria Sine Clinton (costume designer), Khalid Hill (choreographer), John Wright (music director/additional songs), Kyle Metzger (associate director), Kristen Torgrimson (stage manager), and Shayna O'Neill (assistant stage manager).

Post-show panel discussions and talk-backs with experts in the public health field, media, and vaudeville fields along with the cast and creative team for THE Medicine ShowDOWN will be presented as follows: on October 13th - Dr. Scott Hammer (Harold C. Neu Professor of Medicine, Columbia University, College of Physicians & Surgeons) and Andrew Nemr (TED Fellow, Artistic Director at Cats Paying Dues, co-founder of the Tap Legacy Foundation, Inc.); on October 16th - Dr. Richard Besser (Chief Health and Medical Editor, ABC News); on October 17th - Dr. David Weggman (Adjunct Professor of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health) and Jesse Weggman (New York Times Editorial Board - Supreme Court and legal affairs); and on October 25th - Dr. Jim Marks (Senior Vice President and Director, Health Group, RoBert Wood Johnson Foundation).

These panal discussions have been created through the support of community partners Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, Columbia School of Nursing, and the RoBert Wood Johnson Foundation

Scheduled October 12 through October 27, THE Medicine ShowDOWN will have a performance schedule of 8pm on Wednesdays and 7:30pm Thursday-Sunday at the East 4th Street Theatre (83 East 4th Street - btw. Bowery and Second Avenue). Tickets for THE Medicine ShowDOWN are $20 and can be purchased from Brown Paper Tickets.

For more information about THE Medicine ShowDOWN or Flying Carpet Theatre, visit

Adam Koplan (Co-author) is a New York writer/director and the founding artistic director of The Flying Carpet Theatre Company. Under Adam's leadership, The Flying Carpet Theatre has premiered multiple productions and toured the United States and Europe. Adam has directed nine FCT productions, including 1001 Nights, The Dancing Handkerchief, Man of Infinite Mystery, The Eleventh Hour, Extropia and A Day in Dig Nation. The Mystery of Chung Ling Soo, a play that Adam co-wrote as well as directed, toured Edinburgh, Dublin, Clonmel and Atlanta, playing to sold-out houses and garnering five star reviews. In addition to his work with Flying Carpet, Adam runs the performance programs at The Dreamyard Project, training and overseeing a dozen teaching artists in residencies in New York City public schools.

Topher Payne (Co-author) has been a member of the Flying Carpet Theatre since 2005. He is one of Atlanta's most esteemed playwrights, having premiered nine of his own plays with various Atlanta theatres since 2001, with subsequent regional productions. He has been honored with numerous awards and distinctions, including Best Local Playwright (Creative Loafing Reader's Choice - 2010, 2011, 2012), Best Local Writer and Best Local Actor (GA Voice Reader's Choice - 2010, 2011, 2012), Artist of the Year (David Magazine 2011), Best Local Playwright (Sunday Paper 2010), Best Actor (2011 Post & Alley Awards, for Proof), and dozens of other nominations. His New York debut, Entertaining Lesbians, was met with critical and audience acclaim. Other plays include: Above the Fold, Don't Look at the Fat Lady, Lake Bottom Prime, Tokens of Affection, Bad Mama, to name a few.

Jessi D. Hill (Director) is Associate Artistic Director of terraNOVA Collective and a freelance theatre director based in NYC. New York new play development directing projects include work at New York Theatre Workshop, The Public Theater, Hoxton Hall (London), The Playwrights' Center, Primary Stages, The New Group, Culture Project, New Dramatists, The Lark, The Playwrights Realm, New Georges, The Women's Project, Youngblood, Astoria Performing Arts Center, and others. She has been Staff Repertory Director for The Acting Company, a Director-in-Residence at Ensemble Studio Theatre, and a guest artist in professional training programs at Yale School of Drama, Fordham University, Long Island University, Powerhouse/NY Stage & Film, NYU/Tisch, NYU/Strasberg Institute of Theatre and Film, NYU/Playwrights Horizons, and others. MFA: Yale. Member SDC.

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