Pop Opera GERTRUDE STEIN SAINTS Returns to NYC at Abrons Arts Center, Now thru 6/28

Pop Opera GERTRUDE STEIN SAINTS Returns to NYC at Abrons Arts Center, Now thru 6/28

After winning two FringeNYC Overall Excellence Awards last summer, Theater Plastique returns to New York with an updated production of its acclaimed pop opera Gertrude Stein SAINTS! Preview performances of this limited engagement begin today, June 12 at Abrons Arts Center with opening slated for June 17.

One of Gertrude Stein's artistic projects was to write the sound of American language. Theater Plastique advances this idea, setting Stein's 'saints' librettos to distinctly American genres of music. Featuring rap, country, rock n' roll, hollerin', gospel, Shaker, bounce, jazz, and bluegrass, Gertrude Stein SAINTS! is an award-winning pop-opera that celebrates what it is to be American.

Directed by Michelle Sutherland, Gertrude Stein SAINTS! features original music composed and performed by the cast: Chante' Adams, Lauren Adleman, Daniel Bellomy, Denée Benton, Erron Crawford, Rayquila Durhamn, Molly Griggs, Amanda Leigh Jerry, Johari Mackey, Mitch Marois, Jimmy Nicholas, Jordan Phillips, Carter Redwood, Cara Ronzetti, Kelsey Tarantino, Joe Ventricelli and Jacob Vine. The production also features projection design by Jordan Harrison and Kevan Loney, costumes by Erik Anderson, lighting by Justin Keenan Miller, sound design by Almeda Beynon, and dramaturgy by Emma McFarland. Completing the production team are Mitch Marois and Lauren Adleman (Assistant Directors), Jess Bergson (Production Manager) and Nzinga Williams (Stage Manager).

Founded in 2013 by Artistic Director Michelle Sutherland, Theater Plastique is an artist collective that develops original music theater, opera, and plays called The New American POP Theater. The collective is organized around principles of diversity, multiplicity, plasticity; the collective is diverse, multiple, plastic. Theater Plastique's first production, Gertrude Stein SAINTS! was produced at La MaMa Experimental Theater Club as part of the 2013 New York International Fringe Festival. The production won two awards: Overall Excellence in Music and Overall Excellence in Directing (Michelle Sutherland). The collective is currently developing new work using jazz techniques as the basis for collaboration and exploration. Theatre Plastique's second in a triptych of shows celebrating American poetry, Emily Dickinson OUTER SPACE! will be workshopped this summer at the Fury Factory in San Francisco and performed at in New York at The Bushwick Starr in September 2014.

Michelle Sutherland is a theater director and performance creator who develops highly original music theater and opera. Michelle began her work in the field of performance as the guitarist of an eight-piece gypsy jazz punk band. Her work with the Theater Plastique ensemble has spanned five years. Recent credits include the world premiere of 'Bridal Suite' by Rob Handel and Dwayne Fulton at Opera Theatre of Pittsburgh. She received her B.A. in drama from Stanford University, where she also staged original work. She is currently a John Wells Fellow at Carnegie Mellon's School of Drama.

GERTRUDE STEIN SAINTS! runs June 12 - 28, Thursday - Saturday at 8pm with an additional performance June 17 at 8pm. Abrons Arts Center is located at 466 Grand Street at Pit Street. Tickets are $20 ($15 for students & seniors), and can be purchased online at www.abronsartscenter.org or by phone at 212-351-3101.

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