Theater For The New City's Dream Up Festival Presents The US Premiere of FINISHING THE SUIT
"Finishing the Suit" is a memory play, written by Lawrence Aronovitch and directed by Joan Kane, about a tailor who mourns the loss of the two most important people in his life: his lover Jimmy and his most famous client, the Duke of Windsor. The play explores people's bravery to break free of the lives their families expect them to lead and to be true to themselves. After several successful runs in Canada, the play will have its U.S. premiere September 5 to 10 as part of Theater for the New City's 2017 Dream Up Festival.
The play begins with a nameless tailor working on the Duke's funeral suit; however, he is also working through his guilt and unresolved feelings for both Jimmy and the Duke. The other two men appear before him and conversation ensues focusing on faith, gay identity, nationality and class differences. Through this we learn more about each character. The tailor is a working-class New York Jew who is expected to marry a strictly Jewish woman and raise a traditional family. Jimmy was raised Catholic of northern Ireland and became a gay Broadway dancer. The Duke of Windsor had abdicated the throne of England to marry the American woman he loved.
This will be Ego Actus Theater Company's 16th festival play produced in festivals. "Finishing the Suit" was first produced by Bear & Company, premiering at Gladstone Theater in Ottawa, Canada in March 2017 where it was called "meaningful, intelligent and insightful...a valuable addition to the history of queer theatre" (Ian Huffam, New Ottawa Critics). For more information about the play, please visit http://egoactus.com/finishing-the-suit.html
Playwright Lawrence Aronovitch hails from Montreal, Canada. Initially studying history and physics at Harvard University and working in the U.S. and Canadian space programs, he turned to playwriting in 2007. A former playwright in residence at the Great Canadian Theatre Company, he has written plays about scientists (Marie Curie), poets (W.H. Auden), politicians (Ezekiel Hart) and movie stars (Hedy Lamarr).
Director Joan Kane is the founding Artistic Director of Ego Actus and staged "I Know What Boys Want" on Theatre Row, "Six Characters in Search of an Author" in Oslo, Norway and Kafka's "Belinda" in Prague. She also directed "Safe" and "What Do You Mean" at 59E59 Theaters and in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, receiving four star reviews for each. Kane was awarded Best Director in the 2016 United Solo Festival and was named to the Indie Theatre Hall of Fame by nytheatre.com. She has also directed plays and readings for the Lark Play Development Center, Ensemble Studio Theatre, the NY Fringe Festival, Theater for the New City, Urban Stages, the Bleecker Street Theater, the Workshop Theater, Nylon Fusion, Abingdon Theatre, Oberon Theatre, the Samuel French Short Play Festival, the Midtown International Festival, The Players Club, the Lambs Club and The Actors Studio. She has an MFA in Directing from The New School and an MS in Museum Education from Bank Street College. She is a member of The New York Madness Company, the Dramatists Guild, the League of Professional Theatre Women and the Society of Stage Directors & Choreographers.
The eighth annual Dream Up Festival (www.dreamupfestival.org) is being presented by Theater for the New City from August 27 to September 17. An ultimate new work festival, it is dedicated to the joy of discovering new authors and edgy, innovative performances. Audiences savor the excitement, awe, passion, challenge and intrigue of new plays from around the country and around the world.
The festival does not seek out traditional scripts that are presented in a traditional way. It selects works that push new ideas to the forefront, challenge audience expectations and make us question our understanding of how art illuminates the world around us.
A unique and varied selection of productions will again be offered that draw upon a variety of performance specialties including singing, clowning, poetry, street music, magic and movement. The Festival's founders, Crystal Field and Michael Scott-Price, feel this is especially needed in our present time of declining donations to the arts, grants not being awarded due to market conditions, and arts funding cuts on almost every level across the country and abroad.