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Paul Hufker's BIRTHDAY IN THE BRONX Will Premiere at The Tank

The Tank (Meghan Finn, Artistic Director) will present the World Premiere of Birthday in the Bronx, written by Paul Hufker (Pedro Reyes' Doomocracy; Manufacturing Mischief at The Tank) and directed by Michaela Escarcega (Resident Director at The Tank) at The Tank (312 West 36th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues), February 20-March 8. Performances will be on Thursday, February 20 at 7pm, Friday, February 21 at 4pm, Friday, February 21 at 7pm, Saturday, February 22 at 7pm, Sunday, February 23 at 7pm, Monday, February 24 at 7pm, Friday, February 28 at 7pm, Saturday, February 29 at 7pm, Sunday, March 1 at 3pm, Monday, March 2 at 7pm, Thursday, March 5 at 7pm, Friday, March 6 at 4pm, Friday, March 6 at 7pm, Saturday, March 7pm, Sunday, March 8 at 3pm, and Sunday, March 8 at 7pm. Tickets ($20) are available for advance purchase at The performance will run approximately 70 minutes, with no intermission.

A New York high school play set in the '80s, but covered in mud. Rocky is a first-generation Puerto Rican girl from the Bronx - bright-and brimming, and hella good at field hockey. So good, she's invited to leave her life for a fancy white people high school where presidents are made. Maybe these white walls will save her. But does Rocky need saving? Inspired by real life events, Birthday in the Bronx is a Nuyorican identity crisis in vignettes, where shades of existence are radical resilience.

The cast will feature Milagros Colon (Puerto Rican Kitchen at Nuyorican Poet's Café), Evans Formica, Suzelle Palacios* (Twelfth Night at The Old Globe), Sid Ross (Abdication! at Theater for the New City/Dream Up Festival), and Sigrid Wise (Shakespeare Festival St. Louis; Alabama Shakespeare Festival).* The creative team includes Set/Props/Puppetry Design by Sonya Plenefisch (Refuge with Blessed Unrest; Macbeth with Target Margin), Costume Design by Oriana Lineweaver (Pepita and the Apple with Boundless Theatre), with Wardrobe by Adriana Simo-Arroyo, Sound & Projection Design by Anthony Dean (When We Went Electronic at The Tank), and Lighting Design by Alexandra Vásquez Dheming (New York Theatre Ballet). The production will be Stage Managed by Kelly McGuinness with Movement Director/Assistant Director Eliana Theologides Rodriguez, and Line Producer Katie Walenta.

Paul Hufker (Playwright) has been an AEA actor, playwright and director in NYC for over 12 years. He is a proud graduate of Brooklyn College's MFA playwriting program, under Mac Wellman and Erin Courtney. Paul is currently working with Meghan Finn and Pedro Reyes to create a new, large-scale art installation entitled Mananaland. Most recently, Paul had Manufacturing Mischief premiere at The Tank, a play also conceived by visual artist Pedro Reyes and directed by The Tank's Artistic Director, Meghan Finn. This play has traveled from London to Mexico. Paul also recently worked with world-renowned fashion designer and political activist Carla Fernandez, writing her London fashion show/protest piece which debuted in London in 2018. In the fall of 2017, Paul wrote the script for Pedro Reyes' massive art installation in Brooklyn entitled Doomocracy, directed by Meghan Finn.

Michaela Escarcega (Director) is an indigenous Mexican/Latinx director, actor, and divisor of all thing's performance orient-ed. Michaela has established her emerging professional career at theaters in New York, California, and Alaska. Directorial credits include By Jacqueline Wright (LadyFest 2018), Heredamos Nada (Darkfest 2018), Anne by Adi Eshman, and several short works by Rosalind Grush. Other directorial credits include Chained at The Wild Project and Angels in America, Part 1. Michaela was a 2018 New York Stage and Film Powerhouse resident, a 2019 Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab member, and is a 2020 resident director at The Tank. Michaela holds a B.A. in Theater Arts with honors from CSU, Northridge.

Founded in 2003, The Tank is a multi-disciplinary non-profit arts presenter and producer, which provides a home to emerging artists working across all disciplines, including theater, comedy, dance, film, music, puppetry, and storytelling. We champion emerging artists engaged in the pursuit of new ideas and forms of expression. Our goal is to remove the economic barriers from the creation of new work for artists launching their careers and experimenting within their art form. The heart of our services is providing free performance space, and we offer a suite of other resources such as free rehearsal space, artist fees, and promotional support. We serve over 2,500 artists every year, present over 1,000 performances, and welcome 36,000 audience members each year. The Tank also fully produces 13-18 theatrical World or New York premieres each season. We keep ticket prices affordable and view our work as democratic, opening up both the creation and attendance of the arts to all.

Recent Tank-produced work includes New York Times Critics' Picks OPEN by Crystal Skillman, directed by Jessi D. Hill (2019), Red Emma & The Mad Monk by Alexis Roblan, directed by Katie Lindsay (2018), The Offending Gesture by Mac Wellman, directed by Meghan Finn (2016) as well as Drama Desk-nominated productions The Hunger Artist (2018), The Paper Hat Game (2017), the ephemera trilogy (2017), Ada/Ava (2016), and youarenowhere (2016).

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