Word for Word to Present 36 STORIES by Sam Shepard, 5/21-6/22

Word for Word presents "36 Stories by Sam Shepard" arranged for the stage and directed by Amy Kossow opening with a press night on Saturday May 24 8pm, running through June 22 (previews May 21-23) at Z Space's second venue, Z Below, at 470 Florida Street. For this year-long celebration of Sam Shepard's 70th birthday, Magic Theatre spearheaded revivals of his most acclaimed works in theaters all across the Bay Area. "What sets "36 Stories by Sam Shepard" apart is that these are Shepherd's prose stories, turned into performance, the only completely new work created for the celebration..." remarks Word for Word co-artistic director Susan Harloe. "Word for Word was invited to create an original work by adapting his prose for the stage." Company member Amy Kossow spent a year sifting through five of MR. Shepard's collections of short stories, eventually choosing to begin with a single story, set, simply enough, in a roadside diner. The resulting script, "36 Stories by Sam Shepard", weaves together tales of his beloved great American desert highways, the endless lonesome roads along which one may meet any type of fellow wanderer.

Word for Word presents : "36 Stories by Sam Shepard" Arranged for the Stage and Directed by Amy Kossow May 21-June 22 (previews May 21--23) opening press night Saturday May 24 8pm At: Z Below, Z Space's new second venue, at 470 Florida St.. Performances; Wednesday-Thursday 7 pm, Friday-Saturday 8 pm, Sunday 3 pm Ticket prices: $35-55 (with $5 Student/Senior discount); $20 previews. Tickets: 866.811.4111 or at www.zspace.org

Ms. Kossow was a founding member of the Z Space Studio, and is a Charter Member of Word for Word. With WFW, she has directed mainstage, touring, and Off the Page series stories by Siobhan Fallon, Mavis Gallant, Leslie Ely, Mem Fox, Gail Carson Levine, Dan Chaon, Nathan Englander, Kay Boyle and Lawrence Block. She has directed works at Magic Theatre, the Eureka, Berkeley City Club, Asian American Theater, and at People's Light and Theater. Favorite WFW acting roles include Amanda Toplady (In Friendship), Ottaline (The Bunchgrass Edge of the World), Rose (Three Blooms), Abby Borden (The Fall River Axe Murders), and Miss Van Vluck (Xingu). Ms. Kossow appeared as Sadie in the American premiere of Any Given Day and as Mary Prime Deity in the rolling world premiere of The Lily's Revenge, both at Magic Theatre. She also originated the roles of Hilda, Ma Humbert, and Miss Martin in Octavio Solis's adaptation of John Steinbeck's The Pastures of Heaven at CalShakes (collaboration with Word for Word) and at the Arena Stage 2011 New Play Convening. She holds an MFA from Catholic University, along with a JD from University of Chicago.

Sam Shepard (Playwright) was first produced in New York in 1963 at Theatre Genesis and many times at La MaMa and Café Cino. Eleven of his plays have won Obie Awards including The Tooth of Crime (1972) and Curse of the Starving Class (1976). He was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for his play Buried Child (1979), which made its world premiere at Magic Theatre in 1978. The critically acclaimed production of True West, starring John Malkovich and Gary Sinise opened in New York in 1982 after the play's world premiere at Magic Theatre in 1980. Fool For Love (1982), originally produced at Magic Theatre starring Ed Harris and Kathy Baker, received the Obie for Best Play and Direction. A Lie of the Mind (1985) won the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award and the Outer Critic's Circle Award for Outstanding New Play. Simpatico opened at The Royal Court Theatre after its premiere at The Public Theatre in 1994 and was made into a feature film by Matthew Warchus starring Nick Nolte and Sharon Stone. A revised Buried Child under the direction of Gary Sinise opened on Broadway in 1996 and was nominated for a Tony Award. Signature Theatre devoted its season to him that same year. Several new plays opened over the next ten years in the United States and in London, most notably The Late Henry Moss and The God of Hell. MR. Shepard recently began a fruitful collaboration with The Abbey Theatre in Dublin, Ireland where Kicking a Dead Horse and Ages of the Moon premiered. As an actor, he is perhaps best known for his roles in Days of Heaven, The Right Stuff and Frances. His latest play, Heartless, premiered at Signature Theatre in August, 2012. His third book, "Day Out of Days", was published last year.

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