Axial Theatre Celebrates Its 20th Anniversary Season With World Premiere Of Howard Meyer's SENESCENCE
Axial Theatre will launch its 20th anniversary season with the world premiere, Nov. 2-18, of Senescence, a compelling new play by Axial’s founder, Howard Meyer, that takes an unflinching look at the devastating and deadly effects of chemical toxicity and the ire of Mother Nature when an alleged prophet comes to a blue-collar town. Award-winning filmmaker/director James Fauvell will direct.
David Simpatico, co-artistic director of HOWL Playwrights and writer of the book for High School Musical, says of the work: “Brutally honest and painfully inquisitive …Senescence, examines the death rattles of interpersonal relationships against the backdrop of environmental devastation caused by …greed and [the pursuit of] profit. …Can the world survive mankind? Can mankind survive the world?”
The play tells the story of Rudy and Natalia, a couple since their teens, and their lifelong friend Geo who were born in the refinery town of Linden, NJ, a place known for the plumes of smoke that can be seen as you drive near it, especially on a windy day when a storm is brewing. The three, now 30, never left. Many of their parents died way too soon.
A mysterious drifter who calls himself ‘J’ arrives just when Hurricane Sandy starts to threaten. J tries to persuade the refinery bosses to make dramatic changes, changes he tried to get a refinery in Texas to make after his own father died after working there for years –from the same toxins that J is convinced killed the parents of Rudy, Natalia and Geo. J’s frustration only mounts as he is forced to accept that nothing will happen if he can’t break through the layer of denial engulfing the threesome. In time, signs and signals start moving the friends and the town towards a series of harrowing and unwelcome realizations.
Senescence will run Friday, November 2, 9 and 16 and Saturday, November 3, 10, and 17 at 8 p.m; Saturday matinees at 3 p.m.; and Sunday matinees at 4 p.m., November 4, 11 and 18. Tickets are $27.50 general audiences; $22.50 for seniors and students. Axial Theatre is located on the campus of St. John’s Episcopal Church, 8 Sunnyside Ave., Pleasantville, NY. Visit www.axialtheatre.org for tickets and information.
Meyer’s most recent original work, Paint Made Flesh, recently completed a run at The Cell in Manhattan; it was a semi-finalist at the 2015 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference and PlayPenn and selected by The Last Frontier Theatre Conference.
New York City-based filmmaker and frequent downtown theater director James Fauvell regularly works with Tony and Emmy-nominated director Scott Ellis and is a member of the 2017 Lincoln Center Directors Lab.