Original Stars Return for GOOD SAMARITANS Tonight at Abrons Arts Center
Abrons Arts Center and New York City Players present a revival of Richard Maxwell's Good Samaritans (tonight, February 8, through February 25), a critically acclaimed 2004 play that toured extensively in Australia and Europe, including the 2005 Venice Biennale. This engagement features the original cast of Kevin Hurley and RoseMary Allen, who won an Obie for her performance, along with original designer Stephanie Nelson.
Good Samaritans is set in a dining hall at a rehabilitation center. The play, which features five original songs by Maxwell, centers on an unconventional love story between an intake counselor in her 70s (Allen) and her patient (Hurley).
Playwright and director Maxwell, who has never revived an older work, said, "When I look back at the twenty plays I've written since 1997, there's something about Good Samaritans that holds up and perhaps feels even more resonant in 2017. It's simple and yet provokes questions about what we have access to, especially in the city. It is also theater that doesn't behave, that makes me smile... and the characters need to connect feels as necessary as ever."
Upon reviewing the world premiere at St. Ann's Warehouse, Charles Isherwood in The New York Times wrote, "Clearly, Mr. Maxwell doesn't want us to be seduced into suspending our disbelief in the artifice of theater, as he is more fascinated by life than by the stage. He resists hoodwinking the audience through the old-fashioned voodoo because he is vastly more interested in awakening a more examined compassion for the people he depicts onstage."
Joining Allen and Hurley in performance are musicians James Moore (guitar) and David Zuckerman (piano). The creative team for Good Samaritans includes Stephanie Nelson (sets, lights and costumes), Linda Mancini (additional costume pieces), Regina Vorria (producer), Dirk Stevens (technical director) and Louris van de Geer (stage manager).
Performances of Good Samaritans will take place February 8-25 (see schedule above) at Abrons Arts Center (466 Grand St, Manhattan). Critics are welcome on February 10 and 11 for an official opening on Wednesday, February 15. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at abronsartscenter.org or by calling 212.352.3101.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Richard Maxwell (writer, director, songs) is a playwright, director and the artistic director of New York City Players. He studied acting at Illinois State University and then became a co-founder of the Cook County Theater Department. He is a Doris Duke Performing Artist and has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, two OBIE Awards, the 2014 Spalding Gray Award, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grant, and was an invited artist in the Whitney Biennial. His latest book, Theater for Beginners, is published by TCG (2015).
Kevin Hurley (Kevin) has performed with Richard Maxwell's New York City Players in Sea Plays with The Wooster Group at The Performance Garage and in San Francisco and Los Angeles, Good Samaritans at St Ann's Warehouse and in Europe and Australia, and in Ute Mnos vs Crazy Liquors. Additional credits include Paulina Olowska's Alphabet at MoMa; Xavier Cha's Fruit Machine at Muse of Contemporary Art Philadelphia; Dennis Johnson's Hellhound on My Trail at Atlantic Theatre; Juliana Francis's Saint Latrice at PS 122; Richard Forman's Bad Boy Nietzche at Ontological-Hysteric Theater and in Europe and Japan; Gale Gate's So Long Ago I can't Remember; The Builders Association's Jet Lag at The Kitchen and in Seattle, London and Europe. In Chicago, he is a member of Remains Theatre and has performed in Mad Forest, The Day Room and American Buffalo. Film/TV credits include: "Mad Dog & Glory", "Normal Life" and "Law & Order."
RoseMary Allen (Rosemary) performed in Richard Maxwell's Good Samaritans with Kevin Hurley from 2004-2006. The venues included Arts and Theater festivals in Bonn, Zurich and Melbourne, independent theaters in Paris and Toulouse and the Venice Biennale. For her performance in Good Samaritans at St. Ann's Warehouse, Allen was awarded an Obie. After a long and diverse career in nursing, Allen retired to Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico, where she now lives with her partner. She spends her time studying acting and painting and sharing wonderful times with her children, grandchildren and many great friends. Allen is pleased to be returning to her hometown of New York to work again after ten years with Richard Maxwell and to perform with Kevin Hurley in Good Samaritans.
Stephanie Nelson (sets, lights and costumes) is excited to be working with Richard Maxwell and New York City Players again. She previously had the pleasure of designing the sets and costumes for Caveman and Boxing 2000, and designed the original touring Dutch production of Good Samaritans (Barmhartige Samaritaan) in Amsterdam. Previous theater credits include design for a number of productions for Steppenwolf and Redmoon as well as several other theaters in Chicago, across the U.S. and parts of Europe. Stephanie is now a freelance environmental designer and mom based in St Louis, Missouri, and is currently working toward bringing a toy to market.
The Abrons Arts Center is the OBIE Award-winning performing and visual arts program of Henry Street Settlement. The Abrons supports the creation and presentation of innovative, multi-disciplinary work; cultivates artists in all stages of their practice with educational programs, mentorships, residencies and commissions; and serves as an intersection of engagement for local, national and international audiences and arts-workers.
Each year the Abrons offers over 250 performances, 12 gallery exhibitions and 30 residencies for performing and studio artists, and 100 different classes in dance, music, theater, and visual art. The Abrons also provides New York City public schools with teaching artists, introducing more than 3,000 students to the arts.
New York City Players (NYCP) is a theater company founded by Artistic Director Richard Maxwell in 1999. NYCP has been presented in New York and in over twenty countries and has received national and international recognition, including five Obie Awards. Visit www.nycplayers.org for more.