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Rising Circle Theater Collective Kicks Off PLAYRISE 2014 Today

Four emerging playwrights of color will unveil exciting new works when Rising Circle Theater Collective presents PlayRISE, a reading series of new plays. The collection of new drafts is a culmination of INKtank 2014, a 12-week playwright lab, moderated this season by Migdalia Cruz and Deepa Purohit.

Playwright Nancy Kim kicks off the reading series today, May 20, with her play Patty and Arnold, directed by Jesse Jou. The cast includes Pun Bandhu, Gillian Glasco, Brandon Jones, Teresa Avia Lim, Virginia Wing. On the eve of her husband's memorial, Patty meets Arnold. Across cultural expectations, they overlook all risks to fall in love, despite the protests of their adult children. A NYC twist on the traditional Romeo and Juliet story.

On Wednesday May 21, Mariana Carreño King's Miss 74489 directed by Daniel Jaquez takes the stage with Teddy Cañez, Portia, Irene Sofia Lucio. From arrival to escape, Miss 74489, is the journey of a woman serving a prison life sentence for killing her daughter. Using chalk that a guard gives her to trace her story, Maria plans her escape with the help of an ominous "shadow self" that haunts her in solitary confinement.

Azure Osborne-Lee's Crooked Parts directed by Jamal Jordan can be seen on Thursday, May 22 with Adrian Baidoo, Suzanne Darrell, Cameron Mitchel Mason, and Ileya Williams. 29 year-old Freddy has returned home to his nuclear family after a terrible break-up. 12 year-old Winifred is struggling to create a more socially acceptable version of herself. What happens when life doesn't turn out as expected?

Germaine Netzband's Treasure Hunting in Dawnland concludes the series with Tatiana Pandiani directing Farah Bala, Harvy Blanks, Russell Jordan, Carolyn Michelle Smith. Stuck in a bleak rural town in Down East Maine, a fractured family struggles to understand how their turbulent past has informed their present. Will they be able to reconcile with their painful history in order to mend their broken lives?

PlayRISE will take place at Penthouse 1 at Shetler Studios at 7:30PM. Admission is free but tickets must be reserved through Eventbrite (

Founded in 2000, Rod Bowen and Deepa Purohit, created Rising Circle Theater Collective to address the lack of stories and roles on stage that represent the diverse cultural communities in New York City. Now in its 13th year, Rising Circle Theater Collective is a not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to broadening the scope of storytelling on the American stage by providing a home for artists of color that empowers them to seek out unheard stories of people of color, thereby inspiring the creation of theater that challenges cultural misperceptions in an effort to bridge social divides. The company's members include Farah Bala (actor | educator);Kareem Fahmy (director | playwright); Monet Hurst-Mendoza (playwright | director); Nancy Kim (producer); Pirronne Yousefzadeh(director |educator). For more information, visit

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