Forum Theatre Presents THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE, 2/16-3/10

By: Jan. 14, 2012

Forum Theatre presents Julia Cho's 2010 Susan Smith Blackburn prize winner, The Language Archive. Tickets are $25 for all performances ($20 for seniors, groups, and Round House subscribers; $15 for students and patrons under 30). To purchase, visit or call the Round House box office at 240-644-1100.

George is a brilliant linguist, consumed with preserving and documenting dying languages. But at home, he cannot find the words that will preserve his disintegrating marriage. His archival assistant is mute with adoration for him; and his newest subjects, an elderly couple who are the last speakers of an obscure language, refuse to utter a word to one another. A magically inventive comedy, The Language Archive asks whether love is a universal language or, like Esperanto, just a well-intentioned dream.

Cast includes 2-time Helen Hayes Nominee Mitchell Hebert (After The Fall, Theatre J; Clybourne Park, Woolly Mammoth), Helen Hayes Award Winner Nanna Ingvarsson (Angels in America and One Flea Spare, Forum Theatre), Katie Atkinson (The Skriker, Forum Theatre; Farenheit 451, Round House), Edward Christian (This Wonderful Life and Doubt, Perseverance Theatre), and 2-time Helen Hayes Nominee Kerri Rambow (Dancing at Lughansa, Keegan Theatre; Wonder of the World, Woolly Mammoth).

"Cho is a very smart writer, and this is a gorgeously crafted play. This is a play about endings - the death of language, of loved ones, of relationships - and also about beginnings…every character in this world stands on the threshold between life and death, love and loss, silence and speech." says director, Jessica Burgess, "It's rare that you encounter a play that is as hilariously funny and as deeply sad as The Language Archive. " Ms. Burgess is the founding Artistic Director of The Inkwell. Her directing credits include Kid-Simple: a radio play in the flesh at Forum Theatre, Constellation at Active Cultures, The Beard of Avon at Rorschach, and many more.

"We were drawn to the rich lyricism of this play, as well as to the many facets of language it represents." says Literary Manager, Laura Esti Miller, "…each character is driven by deep questions that we can't wait to start uncovering with our director Jessica Burgess and the artistic team."

Creative team includes scenic designer Robert Hayes, associate scenic designer Patrick Lord, costume designer Deb Sivigny, lighting designer Brittany Diliberto, sound designer Thomas Sowers, with dramaturg Laura Esti Miller, language dramaturg Veronika Vorel, and stage manager Stephanie Junkin.

This is the second consecutive year Forum Theatre has featured a winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, the first being Naomi Wallace's plague drama One Flea Spare in the spring of 2011.

Performances are Thursday-Saturday at 8:00 PM and Sundays at 2:00 PM. Additional shows Saturday, March 3, 2012 at 2:00 PM, Monday, March 5, 2012 at 7:30 PM, and Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Open Forum discussions will follow the performances on Thursday, March 1st, Saturday, March 3rd at 2pm, Thursday, March 8th, and Saturday, March 10th at 2pm. There will be two Pay-What-You-Can Previews on Thursday, February 16 & Friday, February 17 at 8:00pm.

The Language Archive is the final piece of Forum Theatre's Female Voices Festival. Join us for Potluck Readings and Discussions (Round House Education Center on January 25th at 7:30pm) and culminating Theatre Symposium (Silver Spring Civic Building on January 28th from noon – 4pm) as we continue to investigate the gender imbalance in theatre through a celebration and exploration of the female voice. More details can be found at