San Diego Rep Announces Cast for So Cal Premiere of THE OLDEST BOY

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The complete cast and creative team have been announced for the Southern California Premiere of "The Oldest Boy" as San Diego REPertory Theatre continues its 40th Anniversary Season. REP Co-Founder and Artistic Director Sam Woodhouse directs his second production of the season, taking on this one-of-a-kind play by REP favorite, Sarah Ruhl. The show's run will begin performances on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015 and run through Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015 with an opening night on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015 at 7 p.m. in the Lyceum Stage Theatre.

Single tickets are now on sale and begin at $33. Purchase before Nov. 5 and save 25 percent. Student tickets for $20 are also available for all performances. Tickets can be purchased online at www.SDRep.org, by phone at 619-544-1000 or by visiting the box office at 79 Horton Plaza, San Diego, CA 92101.

Sarah Ruhl (Tony Award nominee, Pulitzer Prize Finalist and MacArthur "Genius" Grant winner) is a favorite of San Diego audiences and the author of "In the Next Room, or the vibrator play" and "The Clean House," two Pulitzer Prize finalists previously produced by San Diego REP. "The Oldest Boy" was a recipient of Theatre Communications Group's 2014 Edgerton Foundation New Play Award.

Playing the role of "Oldest Boy" is Tsering Dorjee Bawa ("Himalaya," "We're No Monks"). Bawa was born in Toe Bawa, Tibet and received his Masters in Tibetan Performing Arts from the famed Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) in Dharamsala, India, the city in which His Holiness, the Dalai Lama resides. He has appeared in both the Off-Broadway production of "The Oldest Boy" at the Lincoln Center Theatre as "Chorus," as well as the West Coast Premiere at Marin Theatre Company in Mill Valley, CA as "Oldest Boy." He is reprising his role from Marin Theatre Company's production when the play makes its Southern California Premiere at San Diego REPertory Theatre. In the role of "Mother" is San Diego favorite Amanda Sitton ("Road to Mecca," "Doubt"). Sitton, who has appeared with The REP multiple times and acted at many venues around San Diego, won the San Diego Critics Circle Craig Noel Award for Outstanding Featured Performer for her performance of "Sister James" in The REP's production of "Doubt."

Joining them is Napoleon Tavale ("Much Ado About Nothing," "Our Lady of 121st Street") as "Father;" Albert Park ("All's Well That Ends Well," "Jade Heart") as "Lama;" and Christopher Aguilar ("Mike & Molly", "Shameless") as "Monk." Rounding out the cast is Janissa Saracino ("Singin' in the Rain," "The Producers") and Joyce Lai ("Jade Heart," "The King and I") as puppeteer/dancers.

"This story takes place in locations that are literally 7,700 miles apart," says Woodhouse. "We have gathered a cast that represents a radical ethnic diversity. 'The Oldest Boy' takes place in Berkeley, Calif. and Dharamsala, India. Our cast features actors from the cultural traditions of Tibet, Polynesian-Samoa, Korea, the Philippines, China and the American heartland."

The creative team also includes Jacole Kitchen (Assistant Director), Michael Roth (Composer), Shelley Orr (Dramaturg), Sean Fanning (Scenic Designer), Jennifer Brawn Gittings (Costume Designer), Jen Setlow (Lighting Designer), Kevin Anthenill (Sound Designer), Joe Huppert (Projections Designer) and Mark Robertson (Puppet Designer).

Woodhouse (Director) co-founded San Diego REP with D.W. Jacobs in 1976, and has since worked as a director, producer or actor on more than 260 productions. As an actor, he has performed on The REP stages in "The Seafarer," in the title role of "King Lear," "Proof," "Hamlet," and with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra in the title role of Stravinsky's "L'Histoire du Soldat." His recent directorial work with The REP includes: "Violet," "Oedipus El Rey," "Honky," "El Henry" (with La Jolla Playhouse), "Detroit," "Venus in Fur," "In the Heights," "Federal Jazz Project," "Clybourne Park," "The Who's TOMMY," "In the Next Room or the vibrator play," "Threepenny Opera" and "Water & Power." In 2011, he directed "American Night: The Ballad of Juan José" for the Denver Center Theatre Company. In 2003, he was awarded the Patté Shiley Award for Lifetime Achievement by KPBS and the prestigious Alonzo Award by the Downtown San Diego Partnership. In 2006, he and Jacobs were honored with the Craig Noel Award by the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle for 30 years of artistic dedication to downtown and diversity.

Sarah Ruhl (playwright) has written many highly acclaimed plays, including "In the Next Room, or the vibrator play," "The Clean House," "Passion Play," "Dead Man's Cell Phone," "Melancholy Play," "Eurydice" "Orlando, Late: a cowboy song," "Dear Elizabeth," and "Stage Kiss." She is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award nominee. Her plays have been produced on Broadway at the Lyceum by Lincoln Center Theater, off-Broadway at Playwrights' Horizons, Second Stage, and Lincoln Center Theater, and extensively regionally and internationally. Originally from Chicago, Ruhl received her M.F.A. from Brown University under Paula Vogel. She has received the Susan Smith Blackburn, Whiting, and Lily awards; a PEN award for mid-career playwrights; and the MacArthur "Genius" Award. Her book "100 Essays I Don't Have Time to Write" was published by Faber and Faber last fall. She teaches at the Yale School of Drama and lives in Brooklyn with her family.

San Diego REPertory Theatre's production of "The Oldest Boy" is supported in part by the generosity of Lynne and Mason Rosenthal, Leo S. Guthman Family Fund, in honor of Sam Woodhouse.



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