May Adrales will helm the world premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s Letters Of Suresh at Second Stage’s off-Broadway Tony Kiser Theater (305 West 43rd Street) in the Spring of 2021.
In Letters Of Suresh, playwright Rajiv Joseph reveals intimate mysteries through a series of letters between strangers, friends, daughters, and lovers – many with little in common but a hunger for human connection. Sending their hopes and dreams across oceans and years, they seek peace in one another while dreaming of a city once consumed by the scourge of war. A companion piece to Joseph’s play Animals Out of Paper, Letters Of Suresh, directed by May Adrales, is the latest work from the Pulitzer Prize-short listed playwright hailed as “wonderfully daring, imaginative, and compassionate” (The New York Times).
Letters of Suresh was commissioned with the support of a grant from the Time Warner Foundation.
Rajiv Joseph returns to Second Stage Theater, which has produced three of his plays: Animals Out of Paper, All This Intimacy, and Gruesome Playground Injuries. His play Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo was a 2010 Pulitzer Prize finalist for Drama and was also awarded a grant for Outstanding New American Play by the National Endowment for the Arts. He has twice won the Obie Award for Best New American Play, first in 2016 with Guards at the Taj (also a 2016 Lortel Winner for Best Play) and then in 2018, for Describe the Night. Other plays include Archduke, The Lake Effect, The North Pool and Mr. Wolf. Joseph has been awarded artistic grants from the Whiting Foundation, United States Artists and the Harold & Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. He is a board member of the Lark Play Development Center in New York City, where he develops all his plays. He served for three years in the Peace Corps in Senegal and now lives in Brooklyn, NY.
May Adrales is a director, artistic leader and teacher and has directed over 25 world premieres. She recently was awarded the prestigious Theater Communications Group Alan Schneider 2018 award for freelance directors. She is a Drama League Directing Fellow, Women’s Project Lab Director, Soho Rep Writers/Directors Lab and New York Theater Workshop directing fellow, and a recipient of the TCG New Generations Grant, Denham Fellowship and Paul Green Directing Award. She proudly serves as an Associate Artistic Director at Milwaukee Rep. She is a former Director of On Site Programs at the Lark Play Development Center and Artistic Associate at The Public Theater. May has directed and taught at Juilliard, Harvard/ART, ACT, Fordham, NYU and Bard College. May has served on faculty at the Yale School of Drama and the Brown/Trinity MFA program. She received an MFA in Directing from the Yale School of Drama. Recent world premieres include Qui Nguyen’s Lortel Award and Obie Award winning, Vietgone (MTC, South Coast Rep, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Seattle Rep); Lauren Gunderson’s Natural Shocks (WP Theater); Poor Yella Rednecks (MTC, South Coast Rep), Kemp Powers’s Little Black Shadows (South Coast Rep); Idris Goodwin’s The Way The Mountain Moved (OSF); Chisa Hutchinson’s Somebody’s Daughter (Second Stage Theater) and The Wedding Gift (Contemporary American Theater Festival); J.C. Lee’s Luce (LCT3); A. Rey Pamatmat’s Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them (ATL) and after all the terrible things I do (Milwaukee Rep); Thomas Bradshaw’s Mary (The Goodman). Her work has been seen at Signature Theater, Lincoln Center, Second Stage Theater, Atlantic Theater, Portland Center Stage and Cleveland Playhouse.
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Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs. The Lia Chang theater portfolio collection,1989-2011, is in the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) collection located in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room and can be accessed here.
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