Hudson Warehouse Re-Invents Greek Classic with LYSISARAH
Hudson Warehouse celebrates its 13th Summer Season in Riverside Park with a new take on a Greek classic. Aristophanes's Lysistrata was a woman who persuaded her sisterhood of friends to withhold sex from their husbands and lovers in an attempt to persuade their men to the end Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta.
"Lysistrata was a play that we as a company have wanted to do for a long time," said Susane Lee, the Assistant Artistic Director of Hudson Warehouse, who also serves as the writer and director of this new piece. "I read the original play and knew I wanted a modern take on the story." Susane further explained, "I realized the battle we as a country were experiencing right now was the Presidential election: Republicans vs. the Democrats, Democrats vs. the Democrats, the Republicans vs. the Republicans. This is a very heated war and then it hit me: What if my Lysistrata was modeled after Sarah Palin? Then the Magistrate would naturally be inspired by Donald Trump. And thus it was born."
Lysisarah is played by Robin Zerbe and presidential candidate Ronald Triumph is played by Joshua Dye. Rounding out the Lysisarah sisterhood is Shell Bearman (inspired by Michelle Bachman) played by Elizabeth Simmons, Ann Smoulder (Coulter), played by Karen Collazzo, Flighty Cruz (Heidi) played by Sabrina Seidner, Carly Purina (Fiorina), played by Deborah Bjornsti, and Lysisarah's daughter, Crystal Palin (Bristol), played by Sonja Gabrielsen. In the Triumph camp is Ned Cruz (Ted), played by Sean Bell, Caleb (inspired by Ben Carson), played by LaRon Lee Hudson, and Dennis Wit plays "Bearman" (inspired by Marcus Bachman).
"When it came to The Chorus of Old Men and Women, I was stumped on how best to portray their voices in my new play. Who were they?" Susane asked. "Then I had a Eureka moment! They are Supreme Court Justices, of course!" Justice Ruth (Ginsberg) is played by Suzanne Du Charme, Justice Ellen (Kagan) is played by Polly Kreisman, Justice Sammy (Alito) is played by Cameron Sun. Susane said, "Credence, inspired by Clarence Thomas, is played by LaRon Hudson. It's the only non-speaking role in the play and my only true political comment."
Susane also stressed, "This is not a political play. A lot of the dialogue is taken from what these people have actually said in real life! I've been faithful to Aristophanes's story while being consistent with the structure of extant comedies so there will be fighting and singing! I also have the most terrific cast. Their enthusiasm and embodiment of these people is spot-on and I couldn't be more thrilled!"
Nicholas Martin-Smith, the Producing Artistic Director of The Warehouse and the Assistant Director, explained, "It's really exciting to be developing a play that is so relevant and timely, that so specifically taps into the social and political maneuvering of the 'Now!' With both the Republican and Democratic Conventions happening during the run of this show, the timing couldn't be more immediate!"
Hudson Warehouse recommends a PG-13 Rating Due to the Sexual Nature of the Dialogue.
Susane has collaborated on many productions with Jared Kirby, the company's Resident Fight Director, and once again entrusts him with telling her story through his ever-imaginative and funny fight choreography. Resident costume designer, Emily Rose Parman, also approached the political themed play with her usual flare for the authentic. In this case, with a patriotic gusto. Susane also commends her Musical Directors, Nathan Mattingly and Sonja Gabrielsen, for getting the music in her head, onto the stage, in such a sexy, fervent way.
Production Stage Manager: Ron Hatcher; ASM, Grace Terdoslavich, Mira Singer.
Lysisarah: "Let's Make America Great Again!" previews on June 30th and opens on July 1st. Performances are June 30th - July 24th, Thursdays - Sundays at 6:30pm. Please show up at The Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument on West 89th and Riverside Drive. Performances are on the north patio, behind the monument.
No Tickets: Just show up by 6:15pm and grab a seat on the benches or steps of the monument. Bring food, drink. 90 minute running time, no intermission. Donation: "Pay What You Can" after the show.
Take the Number 1 Subway to West 86th Street, walk to Riverside Drive, walk north 3 blocks to West 89th Street. Walk into Riverside Park and at the monument, take the path that winds behind the monument to the north patio. Or Take the Express 2 or 3, or the Local 1 to West 96th Street. Walk west towards Riverside drive. At West 91st street, walk into Riverside Park, taking the path towards the Monument until you find the north patio.
Hudson Warehouse's June show, Much Ado About Nothing, closes on June 26th, Lysisarah: "Let's Make America Great Again!" is the July show, and they close the season with OTHELLO in August.
For more information, call 917-775-9837, visit www.hudsonwarehouse.net or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This production was possible by the generous donation of our audience and by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, New York State Council on the Arts.