Trinity Rep Stages New Play THE INFERIOR SEX

Period comedy-drama plays March 16 – April 16.

By: Feb. 22, 2023
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Trinity Rep Stages New Play THE INFERIOR SEX

Trinity Repertory Company continues its 2022-23 Season with the new production The Inferior Sex by Jacqueline E. Lawton, directed by Tatyana-Marie Carlo. The Inferior Sex runs at Trinity Rep in the Dowling Theater from March 16 through April 16, 2023, with press opening night on Wednesday, March 22 at 7:30 pm. Tickets start at $27 and are available online at trinityrep.com/inferiorsex or by contacting the ticket office at (401) 351-4242.  

It's the summer of 1972. The battle to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment is ramping up across the nation. Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm is campaigning for president. And in midtown Manhattan, a group of women have created a magazine "for feminists who love fashion." As the war in Vietnam intensifies, and the Watergate scandal erupts, the charged political and social climate challenges friendships and the future of the magazine itself. Poignant and hilarious, The Inferior Sex looks at finding your politics, your community, and your voice in an ever-changing world.

"I am very excited for our audiences to experience Jacqueline E. Lawton's wonderful new play, The Inferior Sex," Artistic Director Curt Columbus said. "Lawton's beautiful, comic take on the historic events of 1972 is a rare theatrical gem. It is a story populated entirely by women, and it centers the story on their struggles to make a world of their own. The production, helmed by our brilliant company member Tatyana-Marie Carlo, is at turns funny, serious, and straight-up glamorous."

Jacqueline E. Lawton is a playwright, dramaturg, producer, and racial equity facilitator. Her produced plays include Anna K; Behold, A Negress; Blood-bound and Tongue-tied; Deep Belly Beautiful; Edges of Time; The Hampton Years; Hotel Berry; Intelligence; Mad Breed; and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Her work has been developed and presented at the following venues: Classical Theater of Harlem, Folger Shakespeare Library, the Hangar Theatre, the Kennedy Center, Pasadena Playhouse, PlayMakers Repertory Company, Rep Stage, Rorschach Theater Company, Round House Theatre, Theater J, and Woolly Mammoth Theater Company. Lawton has received commissions from Arena Stage, Adventure Theatre - Musical Theatre Center, National New Play Network, National Portrait Gallery, National Museum of American History, Round House Theatre, Tantrum Theatre, and Theater J. She received her MFA in Playwriting from the University of Texas at Austin, where she was a James A. Michener Fellow. Currently, she is an associate professor in the Department of Dramatic Art at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a production dramaturg for PlayMakers Repertory Company. She is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild.

"I'm excited to bring The Inferior Sex to Trinity Rep," Jacqueline said. "With this play, I'm hoping to honor the contributions of women, highlight the extraordinary legacy of Shirley Chisholm's presidential campaign, and call attention to the power and importance of intersectionality in the women's movement. As a nation, we've got a lot of work ahead of us to achieve justice and equity for marginalized communities. We can certainly learn a lot from the successes and failures of social, racial, and political revolutions of the 1970s. So, I'm delighted that we have an opportunity to laugh, cry, and roar with these women!"

Tatyana-Marie Carlo is a proud Puerto Rican director from Miami, Florida. She received her MFA in Directing from Brown University/Trinity Rep and her BFA in Acting from New World School of the Arts. A resident artist at Trinity Rep, she is the former artistic director of MicroTheater Miami and associate director of Seminole Theatre in Homestead, Florida. At Trinity Rep, Tatyana directed 2022's Sueño and 2019's Fade. Additional directing credits include Subliminal, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, She Kills Monsters, Real Women Have Curves, References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot, Clybourne Park, A Little Less Lonely at Dallas Theater Center, and several bilingual adaptations of Shakespeare with La Bulla Collective. Tatyana previously directed the world premiere production of Jacqueline's play Behold, A Negress as Everyman Theatre in Baltimore.

Tatyana will work alongside an all-female design team, including assistant director Alexis Elisa Macedo, movement director Shura Baryshnikov, set designer Sara Brown, costume designer Amanda Downing Carney, lighting designer Erica Lauren Maholmes, sound designer Stefanie M. Senior, projection designer Stefania Bulbarella, and dramaturg Jules Odendahl-James.

The production's cast features resident company members Jackie Davis as Shirley Chisholm, the first Black woman to run in a major party's presidential campaign; Anne Scurria as the magazine's fashion editor Vera; and Rachael Warren as the magazine's senior editor Joan. They are joined by guest artists Shura Baryshnikov (Alice), Angelique M. C-Dina (Connie), Rachel Dulude (Sandra), and Nicole Lewis (Gwen). Recent Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Acting Program graduate Madeleine Barker will play Penny; Madeleine Russell, a current student in the program, has been cast as Madeleine.

Trinity Rep is dedicated to keeping our artists, staff, and audiences safe, and will monitor the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic throughout the season. Details about Trinity Rep's current health and safety protocols can be found at trinityrep.com/health. 

Continuing Trinity Rep's tradition of offering affordable tickets for all, the theater will hold a Pay What You Will performance of The Inferior Sex on Thursday, March 16. Pay What You Will tickets go on sale at 2:00 pm the day of the performance, and are limited to one per person. Other special performances for this production include Open Captioned performances on April 12, 15, and 16 at 2:00 pm and April 12, 13, 14, and 15 at 7:30 pm. The Sensory-Friendly performance of The Inferior Sex designed to meet the needs of guests with sensitivities to light and sound, will be held on April 5, 2023.

Through Trinity Rep's Project Discovery program, schools can take their classrooms to The Inferior Sex, and receive a study guide that can be used in the classroom, and a post-show discussion with the production team. The Project Discovery performance date for The Inferior Sex is Friday, March 31 at 10:00 am.




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