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Dawn Ursula, Rodney Earl Jackson and More Will Star in West Coast Premiere of TONI STONE at A.C.T.

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Dawn Ursula, Rodney Earl Jackson and More Will Star in West Coast Premiere of TONI STONE at A.C.T.

Tony Award winner and American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) Artistic Director Pam MacKinnon announced today the full cast and creative team for Lydia R. Diamond's new play, Toni Stone. Toni Stone dreams of nothing but baseball. But to become the first woman to play professionally with men as a member of the Negro League's Indianapolis Clowns, she must confront hostile crowds, ruthless team owners, and players who slide spikes first. As she negotiates life's challenges and opportunities on and off the field, Toni stays true to herself and reaches for who she can be. In this new play, Diamond (Broadway's Stick Fly and Showtime's The Affair) uncovers the theatrical journey in Martha Ackmann's book, Curveball: The Remarkable True Story of Toni Stone. The culmination of a seven-plus-year collaboration between Diamond and MacKinnon, Toni Stone is the extraordinary, real-life story of a trail-blazing Bay Area athlete. Toni Stone is a coproduction with Arena Stage.

Following a wildly successful world premiere at the Roundabout Theatre Company in New York City, Toni Stone will have its West Coast premiere at A.C.T.'s Geary Theater (415 Geary St., San Francisco) March 5-29, 2020. Press night for Toni Stone will be held on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. Single tickets (ranging from $15-$110) are available at the A.C.T. Box Office at 415-749-2228 or online at act-sf.org. Ticket prices are subject to change without notice.

Under the direction of MacKinnon, the cast of Toni Stone includes (in alphabetical order): Daniel J. Bryant, JaBen Early, Kenn E. Head, Marquis D. Gibson, Rodney Earl Jackson, Jr., Sean-Maurice Lynch, Ray Shell, Jarrod Smith, and Helen Hayes Award winner Dawn Ursula as 'Toni Stone.'

"This project has been in my life for more than seven years," said MacKinnon. "After a fantastic off-Broadway debut, I am thrilled to be bringing Toni Stone's story to the Bay Area where it belongs. She lived in the Fillmore district and later Oakland and Alameda. Lydia R. Diamond's play is a sweeping Black American baseball play about an exceptional woman playing America's game on her terms."

The creative team for Toni Stone includes Tony Award nominee and Bessie Award winner Camille A. Brown (Choreographer), Riccardo Hernandez (Scenic Designer), Dede Ayite (Costume Designer), Allen Lee Hughes (Lighting Designer), and Broken Chord (Sound Design and Original Music). Toni Stone is produced in association with Samantha Barrie.

In connection with Toni Stone, A.C.T. will offer numerous InterACT events-many of which are presented free of charge-that will give patrons opportunities to get closer to the action while having an entire night out at the theater. Visit act-sf.org/interact to learn more about subscribing to these events throughout the season:

Bike to the Theater Night:

Thursday, March 5, 6:30 p.m.
Providing a greener alternative to theater transportation, A.C.T. and the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition offer free valet bike parking, as well as a special discount on tickets, for these select performances.


Drinks & Drama Friday:

Friday, March 6, 6 p.m.
A new preshow evening of specialty cocktails, pop-up food, a DJ, and $15 tickets to the performance

San Francisco Giants Day

Tuesday, March 10
The San Francisco Giants have partnered with A.C.T. on Toni Stone and will be hosting San Francisco Giants Day with interactive preshow activities, giveaways, and more.

Prologue:

Tuesday, March 10, 5 p.m.
Before the curtain goes up, get a sneak peek at the artistic process at this fascinating preshow discussion with the director and artistic staff.

Theater on the Couch:

Friday, March 13, following the 8 p.m. performance
This exciting postshow discussion series addresses audience questions and explores the minds, motives, and behavior of the characters.

Audience Exchanges:

Tuesday, March 17, 7 p.m. | Sunday, March 22, 2 p.m. | Wednesday, March 25, 2 p.m.
After the show, stick around for a lively Q&A session with the actors and artists who create the work onstage.

Pride Night (formerly OUT with A.C.T.):

Wednesday, March 18, before and following the 7:30 p.m. performance
A revamped pre- and postshow party celebrating LGBTQ+ pride within the theater community

Wine Night:

Tuesday, March 24, 6:30 p.m.
Before the show, raise a glass at this wine-tasting event featuring the Bay Area's hottest local wineries.

PlayTime:

Saturday, March 28, 12:45 p.m.
Before this matinee performance, get hands-on with the artists who make it happen at this interactive theater workshop.



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