Sam Shepard's BURIED CHILD to Open in July at the Firehouse Theatre

Buried Child will have two Pay-What-You-Will preview performances on Tuesday, July 2nd and Wednesday July 3rd, and will run through Sunday, July 21st, 2024. 

By: Jun. 12, 2024
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Sam Shepard's BURIED CHILD to Open in July at the Firehouse Theatre The New Theatre at Firehouse will present the Carol Piersol Legacy Production of Buried Child. The Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Sam Shepard opens on Friday, July 5th, 2024, on the Carol Piersol Stage at the Firehouse Theatre, 1609 West Broad Street. Buried Child will have two Pay-What-You-Will preview performances on Tuesday, July 2nd and Wednesday July 3rd, and will run through Sunday, July 21st, 2024. As part of our year-long celebration of Firehouse founder Carol Piersol, we will honor her legacy with this new production of a landmark Firehouse project.

Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play explores the disintegration of the American Dream, through the eyes of a dysfunctional family in rural Illinois. Long buried family secrets are unearthed, including a haunting mystery in the backyard. Buried Child delves into themes of decay, denial, and the inescapable grip of the past, as Shepard powerfully critiques the disillusionment with traditional values in contemporary America.

Playwright Sam Shepard, one of America's most esteemed dramatists, crafted nearly 50 plays staged nationwide in diverse venues, from coffee shops to Broadway. His works, frequently anthologized and taught in academic settings, reflect dark themes influenced by his turbulent childhood and a fascination with the myth of the vanishing West. Shepard's career, spanning almost 40 years, also saw him achieve recognition as an actor, writer, and director in film, earning numerous awards, including the Cannes Palme d'Or, and the Pulitzer Prize. Born in 1943 in Illinois and raised on various military bases, Shepard's early experiences and love for theatre and music shaped his unique, symbolic, and non-linear storytelling style. He wrote notable plays like Buried Child, which won him a Pulitzer, and had significant acting roles in films like The Right Stuff, earning an Oscar nomination. Despite his broad creative pursuits, playwriting remained his core passion until his death in 2017 from ALS, leaving a legacy deeply embedded in American cultural and theatrical history.

Chelsea Burke will direct. Burke is a theatre and film director originally from Cleveland, Ohio. Her theatre directing credits include the World Premiere of The Verge at Firehouse Theatre; How I Learned to Drive, The Revolutionists (RTCC Nominee for Best Play), Grand Concourse (RTCC Awards for Best Play and Best Director of a Play), the World Premiere of Level 4, The Last Five Years, and When Last We Flew at TheatreLab; It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play at Virginia Rep; The Rocky Horror Show, Collective Rage, the World Premiere of Molly House, Girlfriend, and Hand Grenades at Richmond Triangle Players; The Taming of the Shrew (RTCC Nominee for Best Direction) at Quill Theatre; Anonymous and I and You at Theatre VCU; and Assistant Direction of In Love and Warcraft at the Kennedy Center MFA Workshop. Her film directing credits include Shanidar (Remember Tommy Productions) and The Gallery(Hey, Babe! Productions). 

The design team includes scenic designer Frank Foster and lighting designer Michael Jarrett. Candace Hudert joins the creative team as both assistant director and sound designer. Elizabeth Hopper will design costumes, Erica Hughes will serve as dialect coach, and Lucinda McDermott is intimacy and violence director. Grace Brown LaBelle will stage manage. 

The cast stars David Bridgewater as Dodge, last seen in the US premiere of The Barber of Moville at New Theatre at Firehouse, and Boomie Pedersen as Halie. The cast also includes Andy Braden, Patrick Rooney, Adam Turck, Ashley Thompson, and Doug Blackburn.

Tickets can be purchased at the Box Office (804) 355-2001 and are available online at Tickets are $35. $15 tickets available for college and high school students. Pay-What-You-Will performances will be offered for both preview performances, as well as all matinees (excluding closing, July 21st).


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