Yale School of Drama to Present JELLY'S LAST JAM February 13-18

By: Jan. 29, 2009
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YALE SCHOOL OF DRAMA (James Bundy, Dean; Victoria Nolan, Deputy Dean) presents the musical JELLY'S LAST JAM, book by George C. Wolfe, lyrics by Susan Birkenhead, music by Jelly Roll Morton and Luther Henderson, directed by Patricia McGregor, February 13-18 at the University Theatre (222 York Street, New Haven).

Magic, death, music, and transformation will take center stage in this cabaret-style production of JELLY'S LAST JAM. On his last night on earth, Creole jazz man and self-proclaimed "inventor of jazz" Jelly Roll Morton is visited by an otherworldly stranger. Helped by the denizens of the "Jungle Inn," The Chimney Man forces Jelly to replay, in a searingly honest key, the highest and lowest notes of his life.


Director Patricia McGregor says, "JELLY'S LAST JAM is an exploration of our cultural and artistic roots, an examination of the color of the soul, and an exorcism of the lies and deeds that haunt us. When we've ‘given up the ghost,' what do we leave behind?"


JELLY'S LAST JAM features choreographies by Clarence Agbi, Paloma McGregor, Jennifer Harrison Newman and Tiffany Rachelle Stewart; sets by German Cardenas Alaminos; costumes by Elizabeth Groth; lights by Marie Yokoyama; and sound by Charles Coes.


The cast includes ChrisTina Maria Acosta, Eddie Brown, Trai Byers, Austin Durant, Marcus Henderson, Emily Jenda, Andrew Kelsey, Aja-Naomi King, Irene Sofia Lucio, QuinCy O'Neal, Da'Vine Joy Randolph, Ken Robinson, Baback Tafti, Nondumiso Tembe, and Emily Trask.

Yale School of Drama is creating a series of behind-the-scenes videos that follow the creative process of this production of JELLY'S LAST JAM, including access to rehearsals; interviews with the director, cast, and other members of the creative team. The video blog is available on three websites: drama.yale.edu, YouTube, and Facebook.


JELLY'S LAST JAM will be performed at the University Theatre (222 York Street, New Haven). The performance schedule is:

Friday, February 13 8PM (Opening and Press Night)

Saturday, February 14 2PM & 8PM

Monday, February 16 8PM

Tuesday, February 17 8PM

Wednesday, February 18 8PM

Tickets are $20 general admission, $15 for seniors, and $10 for students. Discounted rates for groups of 10 or more are also available. Tickets may be purchased online at drama.yale.edu, or by calling 203-432-1234. They may also be purchased in person at the Yale Repertory Theatre Box Office at 1120 Chapel Street (at York Street).


Patricia McGregor is a third-year MFA candidate at Yale School of Drama and Artistic Director of Yale Cabaret. Yale Cabaret directing credits include Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, In the Cypher, The Twenty-Four Hour Plays, Sidewalk Opera, In the Meantime, and Dancing in the Dark. Yale School of Drama directing credits include Romeo and Juliet, The Covering Skyline Is Nothing, The Imaginary Audience, and Guernica-The Musical! Other directing credits include 365 Days 365 Plays at The Public Theater, Clarisse and Larmon, Totems, My Children My Africa, and The Seagull. Patricia was a Van Lier Directing Fellow at Second Stage Theatre. She has worked at Brooklyn Academy of Music, the O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, Lincoln Center Institute, and on Broadway with Deborah Warner's Medea. She is currently directing a dance theatre piece based on Patricia Smith's award-winning book Blood Dazzler about Hurricane Katrina with choreographer Paloma McGregor. At Yale, she is a McDougal Scholar and received the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans.

Please visit the following websites for more information about JELLY'S LAST JAM at Yale School of Drama:







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