Sahr Ngaujah, Jojo Gonzalez, Kevin Mambo and Ito Aghayer Set for World Premiere of Lynn Nottage’s MLIMA’S TALE at The Public, March 27 – May 20

Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang
Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang

The Public Theater (Artistic Director, Oskar Eustis; Executive Director, Patrick Willingham) is presenting the world premiere of MLIMA’S TALE, written by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage. Directed by Obie Award winner Jo Bonney, MLIMA’S TALE continues The Public’s Astor Anniversary Season at their landmark downtown home on Lafayette Street, celebrating 50 years of new work and the 50th Anniversary of HAIR. MLIMA’S TALE begins performances on Tuesday, March 27 and runs through Sunday, May 20 in The Public’s Martinson Hall, with an official press opening on Sunday, April 15.

The complete cast of MLIMA’S TALE features Ito Aghayere (Player 3), Jojo Gonzalez (Player 2), Kevin Mambo (Player 1), and Sahr Ngaujah (Mlima).

Public Theater Partner, Supporter, and Member tickets are available now. Full price tickets, starting at $65, can be accessed by calling (212) 967-7555, visiting www.publictheater.org, or in person at the Taub Box Office at The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street.

This season, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage returns to The Public with a new drama as moving and incisive as her Broadway debut play Sweat. Taking us on a journey that starts in a game park in Kenya and goes around the world, MLIMA’S TALE is the story of Mlima, a magnificent elephant trapped in the clandestine international ivory market. Following a trail of greed and desire as old as trade itself, Mlima leads us through memory and fear, history and tradition, and want and need. Obie Award winner Jo Bonney directs this poignant new play that reveals the surprising and complicated deals that connect us all.

MLIMA’S TALE features scenic design by Riccardo Hernandez, costume design by Jennifer Moeller, lighting design by Lap Chi Chu, sound design by Darron L West, original music by Justin Hicks and movement direction by Chris Walker.

Lynn Nottage (Playwright) is a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and a screenwriter whose work has been produced widely in the U.S. and throughout the world. Most recently, her play Sweat (Susan Smith Blackburn Award, OSF American Revolution Cycle Commission) appeared at The Public Theater and Broadway, winning the Pulitzer Prize. Her other plays include By The Way, Meet Vera Stark (Lilly Award, Drama Desk nom.); Ruined (Pulitzer Prize, OBIE, Lortel, NY Drama Critics’ Circle, Audelco, Drama Desk, and OCC Award); Intimate Apparel (American Theatre Critics and NYDCC Awards); Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine (OBIE); Crumbs from the Table of Joy. She recently produced and conceived of This Is Reading, a multi-media performance installation at the Franklin Street Railroad Station in Reading, PA. Nottage was a producer/director on the Netflix series, “She’s Gotta Have It” and co-founder of Market Road Films. Nottage is the recipient of a PEN/Laura Pels Master Dramatist Award, Doris Duke Artist Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship, Steinberg “Mimi” Distinguished Playwright Award, Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award, the inaugural Horton Foote Prize and Lee Reynolds Award. Her other honors include the National Black Theatre Fest’s August Wilson Playwriting Award, a Guggenheim Grant, Lucille Lortel Fellowship and Visiting Research Fellowship at Princeton University. She is an Associate Professor at Columbia School of the Arts. She is an artist-in-residence at the Park Avenue Armory, a member of the Dramatists Guild and The American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Jo Bonney (Director) has directed the Public Lab and main stage productions of Father Comes Home From the Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3), as well as Danny Hoch’s Some People, Diana Son’s Stop Kiss, Anna Deavere Smith’s House Arrest, Jose Rivera’s References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot, and Naomi Wallace’s Fever Chart at The Public. She has directed premieres of plays by Alan Ball, Eric Bogosian, Hammaad Chaudry, Culture Clash, Eve Ensler, Jessica Goldberg, Neil LaBute, Warren Leight, Martyna Majok, Lynn Nottage, Dael Orlandersmith, Darci Picoult, Will Power, John Pollono, David Rabe, Universes, and Michael Weller. She has also directed productions of plays by Caryl Churchill, Nilo Cruz, Charles Fuller, Lisa Loomer, John Osborne and Lanford Wilson. She is the recipient of the 1998 Obie Award for Sustained Excellence of Direction; Lucille Lortel Best Revival, Audelco Award for Father Comes Home, Lilly Award and is the editor of Extreme Exposure: An Anthology of Solo Performance Texts from the Twentieth Century (TCG).

Ito Aghayere
Ito Aghayere

Ito Aghayere (Player 3) has appeared on Broadway in Junk and Off-Broadway in Familiar (Playwrights Horizons), The Liquid Plain (Signature Theatre), Three Days To See (New York Theatre Workshop/Transport Group), The Tempest, Much Ado About Nothing, Macbeth (Classic Stage Company). Her film and television credits include Logan Lucky, Goldie, “Instinct,” “Blacklist,” “Elementary,” “Doubt,” “Master Of None,” “Braindead,” “The Knick,” “Orange Is The New Black,” “Unforgettable,” “Forever.” Education: MFA, Columbia University; BA, Duke University. A 2016 Lucille Lortel Nominee for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play (Familiar).

JoJo Gonzalez
JoJo Gonzalez

Jojo Gonzalez (Player 2) has appeared at The Public in 365 Days/365 Plays, Richard III, F**king A, and Dogeaters. His additional Off-Broadway credits include Small Mouth Sounds (Ars Nova); House Rules, The Romance Of Magno Rubio (Ma-Yi); A Dream Play (Naatco). Regionally he has appeared in Our Town (Long Wharf), Silence Of God (Catf), and Dogeaters (La Jolla). His film and television credits include The Pirates Of Somalia (with Al Pacino), Going In Style (with Alan Arkin, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine), The Smurfs Movie, “The Path,” “Seven Seconds,” “Madam Secretary,” “Blindspot,” “The Blacklist,” “Deadbeat.” He is the recipient of an Obie Award.

Kevin Mambo
Kevin Mambo

Kevin Mambo (Player 1) has appeared at The Public in The Fortress of Solitude and on Broadway in Fela! and The Color Purple. His additional Off-Broadway credits include Ruined, Hoodoo Love, Jailbait, The Last Detail, The Memory of Love’s Refrain, and The Convert. His select film and television credits include Cadillac Records, Nina, Rebel in the Rye, The Firing Squad, One of Us Tripped, “Luke Cage,” “Blacklist,” High Maintenance,” “Soul Food,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Deadline,” “Criminal Intent,” “Spin City,” “Happyish.” He has received three consecutive Daytime Emmy nominations, two Daytime Emmy Awards, and a Helen Hayes nomination.

Sahr Ngaujah
Sahr Ngaujah

Sahr Ngaujah (Mlima) originated the title role in Fela! Off-Broadway, Broadway and the in West End, earning Obie and Theater World Awards; Olivier, Tony, Grammy, Drama Desk, Lortel and Drama League nominations. His Off-Broadway credits include Master Harold and the Boys, The Signature Theater One-Acts, The Painted Rocks at Revolver Creek. His film and television credits include “Deception,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “The Good Wife,” “The Blacklist,” “Last Resort,” “The Accidental Wolf,” Patti Cake$, Money Monster, Freeheld, Kensho at the Bedfellow, Blood Done Sign My Name, The Signal, and Stomp the Yard. He holds a Masters of Theatre from DasArts – Netherlands. His music credits include Fela aKUsTIc, Chop and Quench, Directors Band.

ABOUT The Public Theater:

THE PUBLIC is theater of, by, and for the people. Artist-driven, radically inclusive, and fundamentally democratic, The Public continues the work of its visionary founder Joe Papp as a civic institution engaging, both on-stage and off, with some of the most important ideas and social issues of today. Conceived over 60 years ago as one of the nation’s first nonprofit theaters, The Public has long operated on the principles that theater is an essential cultural force and that art and culture belong to everyone. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham, The Public’s wide breadth of programming includes an annual season of new work at its landmark home at Astor Place, Free Shakespeare in the Park at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, The Mobile Unit touring throughout New York City’s five boroughs, Public Forum, Under the Radar, Public Studio, Public Works, Public Shakespeare Initiative, and Joe’s Pub. Since premiering HAIR in 1967, The Public continues to create the canon of American Theater and is currently represented on Broadway by the Tony Award-winning musical Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda and John Leguizamo’s Latin History for Morons. Their programs and productions can also be seen regionally across the country and around the world. The Public has received 59 Tony Awards, 169 Obie Awards, 53 Drama Desk Awards, 54 Lortel Awards, 32 Outer Critic Circle Awards, 13 New York Drama Desk Awards, and 6 Pulitzer Prizes. ww.publictheater.org

TICKET INFORMATION

MLIMA’S TALE begins performances in The Public’s Martinson Hall on Tuesday, March 27 and runs through Sunday, May 20 with an official press opening on Sunday, April 15. The performance schedule is Tuesday through Friday at 8:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. (There is no 2:00 p.m.performance on Saturday, March 31 and no 8:00 p.m. performance on Tuesday, April 10 or Sunday, April 29. There is an added performance on Monday, April 9 at 7:00 p.m.)

Public Theater Partner, Supporter, and Member tickets are available now. Full price tickets, starting at $65, can be accessed by calling (212) 967-7555, visiting www.publictheater.org, or in person at the Taub Box Office at The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street.

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Pulitzer Prize-Winning and Tony Nominated SWEAT to End Broadway Run on June 25

Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sweat, the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Lynn Nottage, directed by Kate Whoriskey, will close on Sunday, June 25.

Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus
Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus

At the time of closing it will have played 24 previews and 105 regular performances. The production began previews began Saturday, March 4 and opened Sunday, March 26 at Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street).

Johanna Day as Tracey, Alison Wright as Jessie and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia in SWEAT. Photo by Joan Marcus
Johanna Day as Tracey, Alison Wright as Jessie and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia in SWEAT. Photo by Joan Marcus

Producers Stuart Thompson and Louise Gund said today, “Although Sweat is closing on Sunday, June 25 on Broadway, it will have very long life in regional theaters across the country. Lynn Nottage’s play is an electrifying look at our country told with passion and humor, and we are so very proud to have given Lynn her much-deserved Broadway debut. We thank our brilliant director Kate Whoriskey and our incredible cast for bringing Lynn’s prescient play so vividly to life at Studio 54.”

John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby (standing behind the bar) as Stan, Michelle Wilsonas Cynthia, Johanna Day as Tracey and Alison Wright as Jessie IN SWEAT. Photo by Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby (standing behind the bar) as Stan, Michelle Wilsonas Cynthia, Johanna Day as Tracey and Alison Wright as Jessie IN SWEAT. Photo by Joan Marcus

The story of Sweat and the people of Reading, PA will continue this summer with This Is Reading, an ambitious site-specific multimedia installation blending live performance and visual media which will occupy the historic Franklin Street Railroad Station in Downtown Reading from July 14-16 and July 21-23.

Alison Wright as Jessie, Johanna Day as Tracey, Khris Davis as Chris, James Colby as Stan, Carlo Alban as Oscar and Will Pullen as Jason. Photo by Joan Marcus
Alison Wright as Jessie, Johanna Day as Tracey, Khris Davis as Chris, James Colby as Stan, Carlo Alban as Oscar and Will Pullen as Jason in SWEAT. Photo by Joan Marcus

Re-animating the long vacant building, This Is Reading approaches the historic station as a collaborator, placing its unique history and architecture in dialogue with stories of hardships, challenges, and triumphs of people living in and around Reading, PA. The project will weave their individual stories into one cohesive and compelling tale of the city.

Khris Davis as Chris and Lance Coadie Williams as Evan. Photo by Joan Marcus
Khris Davis as Chris and Lance Coadie Williams as Evan. Photo by Joan Marcus

The cast of Sweat includes Carlo Albán (Oscar), James Colby (Stan), Khris Davis (Chris), Johanna Day (Tracey), John Earl Jelks (Brucie), Will Pullen(Jason), Lance Coadie Williams (Evan), Michelle Wilson (Cynthia), and Alison Wright (Jessie).

Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and John Earl Jelks as Brucie. Photo by Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and John Earl Jelks as Brucie. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sweat received the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Lynn Nottage is the first woman to win two Pulitzers for Drama and the first ever woman of color to win two Pulitzer Prizes in any category. She joins an esteemed group of playwrights who have won multiple Pulitzers that includes theatre titans Edward Albee, Eugene O’Neill, Robert E. Sherwood, Thornton Wilder, Tennessee Williams, and August Wilson.

Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and JohAnna Day as Tracey. Photo by Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and JohAnna Day as Tracey. Photo by Joan Marcus

In addition, Sweat was the recipient of an Obie Award for playwriting and was nominated for three Tony Awards including Best Play, two nominations for Best Featured Actress in a Play (Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson); three Drama League Awards: Distinguished Production of a Play and Distinguished Performance (Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson); three Outer Critics Circle Awards: Outstanding Broadway Play, Outstanding Director of a Play (Kate Whoriskey), and Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play (Johanna Day); and two Drama Desk Awards including Outstanding Play. In addition, cast members Carlo Alban received a Theatre World Award and Will Pullen was honored with a 2017 Clarence Derwent Award.

Will Pullen as Jason and Khris Davis as Chris. Photo by Joan Marcus
Will Pullen as Jason and Khris Davis as Chris. Photo by Joan Marcus

It was named as one of the Best Plays of 2016 by The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Time Out New York, The Star-Ledger, The Bergen Record, Deadline, The Wrap, The Huffington Post, New York Amsterdam News, Theatermania, and Broadway World.

Lynn Nottage presenting at the 2017 Tony Awards on June 11, 2017 at Radio City Music Hall. Credit: Theo Wargo
Lynn Nottage presenting at the 2017 Tony Awards on June 11, 2017 at Radio City Music Hall. Credit: Theo Wargo
Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang
Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang

Sweat was co-commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and D.C.’s Arena Stage. The play received its world premiere at OSF in July 2015, in a sold-out run. The production subsequently played an acclaimed run at Arena Stage in January 2016. Sweat played an acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater in November 2016, where it was extended three times, with critics writing about the play’s breathtaking timeliness, compassion, and power.

With warm humor and tremendous heart, Lynn Nottage’s Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat.

Sweat is produced on Broadway by Stuart Thompson, Louise L. Gund, Tulchin Bartner Productions, Jon B. Platt, Roy Furman, Len Blavatnik, Shelly Mitchell, Scott Rudin, Ted Snowdon, Kevin Emrick, True Love Productions, John Gore, Deborah Taylor/Richard Winkler, and The Public Theater.

The creative team for Sweat features John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Jennifer Moeller (costume design), Peter Kaczorowski (lighting design), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (sound design), and Jeff Sugg (projection design).

Tickets are available via Telecharge.com, by calling 212-239-6200, or the Studio 54 Box Office (254 West 54th Street). Box office hours are Monday 10AM-6PM; Tuesday – Saturday 10AM-8PM; Sunday 12-6PM. Ticket prices range from $59 – $149.

From July 14th-16th and July 21st-23rd This Is Reading, an ambitious site-specific multimedia installation blending live performance and visual media, will occupy the historic Franklin Street Railroad Station in Downtown Reading, re-animating the long vacant building. Using as its foundation the hardships, challenges, and triumphs of people living in and around Reading, Pa., This is Reading will weave their individual stories into one cohesive and compelling tale of the city. The project is inspired by the relationship Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage forged with the people of Reading while researching her critically-acclaimed play Sweat with director Kate Whoriskey.

This is Reading will provide the opportunity to bring the restored, but vacant, Reading Railroad Station back to life, by filling it with creative arts that will help illuminate the lives of people living in the Greater Reading area. But more importantly it will set the stage for the community to hold new and meaningful conversations with each other about our community’s future.”

– Pat Giles, former Executive Vice President, United Way of Berks County and current Foundation Associate, The Wyomissing Foundation

“We know that the arts are powerfully effective as a social intervention for understanding and addressing community issues. And, we know that struggling cities, not unlike individuals, often find it difficult to connect with a more balanced perspective so collaborative and meaningful solutions may elude them. THIS IS READING is so exciting because it does both – it offers the awesome prospect of healing and moving a ‘stuck,’ but resilient, city forward.”

– Santo D. Marabella, Film Commissioner , ReadingFilm/Pennsylvania’s Americana Region and Producer, This Is Reading

This Is Reading is created by Pulitzer prize winning playwright Lynn Nottage, filmmaker Tony Gerber, director Kate Whoriskey, choreographer Rennie Harris, DJ Eli Evnen, Designer Deb O, Projection designer Jeff Sugg, lighting designer Smith Chandrashaker, Sound designer Nick Kourtides, producers Santo D. Marabella and Blake Ashman Kipervaser. Actors include Russell G. Jones, Michael Puzzo and Vanessa Aspillaga and many local dancers and performers.

This project’s partners include the award winning Labyrinth Theater, Project&, Market Road Films, Goggleworks Center for Arts reading, Pa, ReadingFilm/Pennsylvania’s Americana Region, The Sketchbook Project, The officers of the Mayor and Managing Director, City of Reading, South Central Transit Authority, Commissioners Office- County of Berks, Reading Company Technical & Historical Society and The Civilians Theater Company.

Project supporters include Pam and Peter Barbey, Columbia University, Lawrence Cowart, Teresa Tsai, Jeanne Donovan Fisher, Howard Gilman Foundation, Ford Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Venturous Theater Fund, Wyomissing Foundation.

Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in  Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2017 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at lia@liachang.com

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GREY’S ANATOMY’s Kelly McCreary to Star in INTIMATE APPAREL at Bay Street Theater, July 4-30

Edward O'Blenis and Kelly McCreary. Photo by Lia Chang
Edward O'Blenis and Kelly McCreary. Photo by Lia Chang
Edward O’Blenis and Kelly McCreary. Photo by Lia Chang

Bay Street Theater is presenting  INTIMATE APPAREL by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage and directed by Bay Street Theater Artistic Director Scott Schwartz, July 4-July 30.

Kelly McCreary, currently one of the stars of “Grey’s Anatomy” on ABC, will star as Esther Mills.

Subscriptions are available by calling the Box Office at 631-725-9500 or online at www.baystreet.org.

In INTIMATE APPAREL, it’s a delicate line between love and desire. Esther Mills is a skilled African American seamstress and has her own successful business in 1905 making lingerie for both society ladies and “ladies of the night.” But she is lonely. As she searches for something more in her life, she unearths truths long hidden in the deepest recesses of her heart. All her relationships will be changed forever, from a poetic love with a Caribbean laborer working far away on the Panama Canal, to complicated friendships with different women in her life, to a growing bond with a Hasidic shopkeeper who shares his exquisite finds of fabrics and maybe something deeper.

In addition to Kelly McCreary (“Grey’s Anatomy,” Passing Strange) as Esther, the cast will feature Portia (Ruined, McReele, Our Lady of 121st Street) as Mrs. Dickson, Blake DeLong (Othello, Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812) as Mr. Marks, Julia Motyka (Bay Street’s Travesties, Richard III) as Mrs. Van Buren, Edward O’Blenis (Uncle Vanya, Tall Grass) as George, and Shayna Small (The Colored Museum) as Mayme.

The creative team includes Michael Holland (Composer), Jeff Cowie (Set Designer), Mike Billings (Lighting Designer), Emilio Sosa (Costume Designer) and Jill B.C. DuBoff (Sound Designer), Andrew Diaz (Props Designer), Gwen Gilliam (Production Stage Manager) and Stephen Gabis (Dialect Coach). Casting byStewart/Whitley.

Kelly McCreary (Esther) is a rising star in Hollywood. She currently resides at Seattle Grace where she joined the cast of “Greys Anatomy” at the end of Season 10 as Dr. Maggie Grace. Before Grey’s Anatomy, Kelly was seen on “Scandal,” “Castle,” “Emily Owens M.D,” “I Just Want My Pants Back,” “White Collar,” “Rubicon,” and “Cyberchase.” Recently, Kelly portrayed the role of “Eartha Kitt” in the indie film “Life” opposite Dane DeHaan and Robert Pattinson. Her other film credits include: “Baby Baby Baby,” “Being Flynn,” and “How to Follow Strangers.” Onstage, Kelly has appeared in Broadway’s Passing Strange, Perfect Harmony at Theatre Row, Secret Order with the Merrimack Repertory Theater, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Eurydice with the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Kelly is a graduate of Barnard College in New York and also has trained at the Chautauqua Conservatory Theatre Company, British American Drama Academy in London, and The Actor’s Center in New York.

Scott Schwartz (director) is the Artistic Director of Bay Street Theater. As a director, he has worked on and off-Broadway, in major regional theaters across the country, and in the UK, Germany and Japan. On Broadway, he directed Golda’s Balcony and Jane Eyre (co-directed with John Caird). Off-Broadway, he directed Murder for Two, Bat Boy: The Musical (Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Awards, Outstanding Off Broadway Musical; Drama Desk Award nomination, Outstanding Director of a Musical), tick, tick…BOOM! (OCC, Outstanding Off Broadway Musical; Drama Desk nomination, Outstanding Director of a Musical), Gigantic (Vineyard), The Foreigner (Roundabout), Rooms, Kafka’s The Castle (OCC nomination, Outstanding Director of a Play), and No Way to Treat a Lady. At New York City Opera he directed Séance on a Wet Afternoon. The regional theaters he has worked at include ACT, Alley, Alliance, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Dallas Theatre Center, Denver Center, 5th Avenue, The Geffen, Goodspeed Opera House, La Jolla Playhouse, Old Globe, Paper Mill Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Portland Center Stage, Signature, Theatre Under the Stars, and Westport Country Playhouse. He is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society and a graduate of Harvard University.

The 2017 Mainstage Season is sponsored in part by New York State through the generosity of Assemblyman Fred Thiele and State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle; the New York State Council on The Arts, a State Agency; Town of Southampton; The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust; The Shubert Foundation; and public funding by Suffolk County. Support for new work comes from The New Directions Fund and the Joseph Stein New Musical Fund.

For more information or to purchase a 2017 Mainstage Season subscription, log on to www.baystreet.org or call the Box Office at 631-725-9500 Tues.-Sat. 11 am-5 pm.

Bay Street Theater & Sag Harbor Center for the Arts is a year-round, not-for-profit professional theater and community cultural center which endeavors to innovate, educate, and entertain a diverse community through the practice of the performing arts. We serve as a social and cultural gathering place, an educational resource, and a home for a community of artists.

Qui Nguyen’s VIETGONE Receives 3 Lucille Lortel Nods including Outstanding Play; Full List of Nominations

The Off-Broadway League today announced nominations in 19 categories for the 32nd Annual Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Achievement Off-Broadway.

One of my favorite plays, MTC’s New York premiere of Qui Nguyen’s Vietgone, helmed by May Adrales and starring Raymond Lee, Paco Tolson, Samantha Quan, Jon Hoche and Jennifer Ikeda,  received three nods including Outstanding Play, Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play for Paco Tolson and Outstanding Projection Design for Jared Mezzochi.

Jon Hoche, Raymond Lee, Paco Tolson, Jennifer Ikeda and Samantha Quan. Photo: Carol Rosegg
Jon Hoche, Raymond Lee, Paco Tolson, Jennifer Ikeda and Samantha Quan. Photo: Carol Rosegg
Qui Nguyen
Qui Nguyen

Innovative, fresh and visually appealing, Nguyen’s singular voice and vision is on display with Vietgone, a modern twist on the All-American love story, borrowing elements from the world of up-to-the-minute popular culture to recreate the playwright’s own parents’ meeting, ranging from hilarity to heart-wrenching drama. It’s the classic story of boy meets girl – except this boy and girl are refugees from the Vietnam War newly settled in a relocation camp inside Middle America.

wsj.com: Creating the Chaos of War With Light, Sound and Projection

Hangin’ with VIETGONE Stars Raymond Lee, Paco Tolson, Samantha Quan, Jon Hoche and Jennifer Ikeda 

Qui Nguyen’s “Vietgone” wins $25,000 Steinberg/ATCA Award for 2015 

The Lortel Awards will be presented on Sunday, May 7, 2017 at NYU Skirball Center beginning at 7:00 PM EST. This year’s event will be hosted by actor and comedian, Taran Killam, and will once again serve as a benefit for The Actors Fund.

Leading the nominations this year with 7 each are the new musical, Hadestown – a folk opera produced by New York Theatre Workshop – and Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, currently at the Barrow Street Theatre, which has been converted into a pie shop for the intimate staging.

Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang
Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang

As previously announced, celebrated costume designer William Ivey Long will be honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage will be inducted onto the famed Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the Lucille Lortel Theatre. Former Managing Director of the Roundabout Theatre Company, Harold Wolpert, will be presented with the Edith Oliver Service to Off-Broadway Award.

A breakfast reception honoring the nominees will take place from 10 AM – 12 PM on Wednesday, April 26, at Playwrights Horizons (416 West 42nd Street, New York).

2017 LUCILLE LORTEL AWARDS NOMINATIONS:

Anthony Azizi, Dariush Kashani, Jennifer Ehle, Michael Aronov and Daniel Oreskes in OSLO. Photo by T. Charles Erickson
Anthony Azizi, Dariush Kashani, Jennifer Ehle, Michael Aronov and Daniel Oreskes in OSLO. Photo by T. Charles Erickson
Tony Shalhoub and Katrina Lenk in THE BAND's VISIT (Photo: Ahron R. Foster)
Tony Shalhoub and Katrina Lenk in THE BAND’s VISIT (Photo: Ahron R. Foster)

Outstanding Play
Indecent
Produced by Vineyard Theatre in association with La Jolla Playhouse and Yale Repertory Theatre
Written by Paula Vogel, Created by Paula Vogel & Rebecca Taichman
Oslo
Produced by Lincoln Center Theater
Written by J.T. Rogers
Underground Railroad Game
Produced by Ars Nova
Written by Jennifer Kidwell and Scott R. Sheppard
Vietgone
Produced by Manhattan Theatre Club in association with South Coast Repertory
Written by Qui Nguyen
The Wolves
Produced by The Playwrights Realm in association with New York Stage and Film and Vassar’s Powerhouse Theatre Season
Written by Sarah DeLappe

Outstanding Musical
The Band’s Visit
Produced by Atlantic Theater Company
Music and Lyrics by David Yazbek, Book by Itamar Moses, Based on the screenplay by Eran Kolirin
Dear Evan Hansen
Produced by Second Stage Theatre in association with Stacey Mindich Productions
Book by Steven Levenson, Music and Lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
Hadestown
Produced by New York Theatre Workshop
Written by Anaïs Mitchell
Ride the Cyclone
Produced by MCC Theater
Book, Music, and Lyrics by Brooke Maxwell and Jacob Richmond
The Total Bent
Produced by The Public Theater
Text by Stew, Music by Stew and Heidi Rodewald

(top) Amelia Workman, David Ryan Smith and Nike Kadri; (middle) Roslyn Ruff, Mirirai Sithole and Jamar Williams; (bottom) Daniel J. Watts. Photo: Joan Marcus
(top) Amelia Workman, David Ryan Smith and Nike Kadri; (middle) Roslyn Ruff, Mirirai Sithole and Jamar Williams; (bottom) Daniel J. Watts. Photo: Joan Marcus

Outstanding Revival
The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World AKA the Negro Book of the Dead
Produced by Signature Theatre
Written by Suzan-Lori Parks
Othello
Produced by New York Theatre Workshop
Written by William Shakespeare

Crystal Dickinson in FUNNYHOUSE OF A NEGRO. Photo: Monique Carboni
Crystal Dickinson in FUNNYHOUSE OF A NEGRO. Photo: Monique Carboni

Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s The Sandbox, María Irene Fornés’ Drowning, and Adrienne Kennedy’s Funnyhouse of a Negro
Produced by Signature Theatre
Written by Edward Albee, María Irene Fornés, and Adrienne Kennedy
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Produced by Rachel Edwards, Jenny Gersten, Seaview Productions, Nate Koch, Fiona Rudin, Barrow Street Theatre, Jean Doumanian, Rebecca Gold, and Tooting Arts Club
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Book by Hugh Wheeler, Adaptation by Christopher Bond
Sweet Charity
Produced by The New Group in association with Kevin McCollum
Book by Neil Simon, Music by Cy Coleman, Lyrics by Dorothy Fields

Photos: SIGNATURE PLAYS featuring Frank Wood, Alison Fraser, Crystal Dickinson, January LaVoy, Ryan-James Hatanaka and More at Signature Theatre

Photos: Sutton Foster, Joel Perez, Emily Padgett, Shuler Hensley, Nikka Graff Lanzarone in The New Group’s SWEET CHARITY

Outstanding Solo Show
Chris Gethard: Career Suicide
Produced by Judd Apatow, Mike Berkowitz, Brian Stern, Mike Lavoie, and Carlee Briglia
Written and Performed by Chris Gethard
Latin History for Morons
Produced by The Public Theater in a co-production with Berkeley Repertory Theatre
Written and Performed by John Leguizamo
Notes From The Field
Produced by Second Stage Theatre and American Repertory Theater
Created, Written, and Performed by Anna Deavere Smith
The Outer Space
Produced by The Public Theater
Book and Lyrics by Ethan Lipton, Music by Ethan Lipton, Vito Dieterle, Eben Levy, and Ian M. Riggs
Performed by Ethan Lipton
Sell/Buy/Date
Produced by Manhattan Theatre Club
Written and Performed by Sarah Jones

Outstanding Director
Will Davis, Men On Boats
Anne Kauffman, A Life
Lila Neugebauer, The Wolves
Bartlett Sher, Oslo
Rebecca Taichman, Indecent

The cast of INDECENT. Photo by Carol Rosegg
The cast of INDECENT. Photo by Carol Rosegg

Outstanding Choreographer
Joshua Bergasse, Sweet Charity
David Dorfman, Indecent
Georgina Lamb, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
David Neumann, Hadestown
David Neumann, The Total Bent

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play
Reed Birney, Man From Nebraska
Michael Emerson, Wakey, Wakey
Lucas Hedges, YEN
Joe Morton, Turn Me Loose
David Hyde Pierce, A Life

Rebecca Naomi Jones and Kecia Lewis in George Brant's Marie and Rosetta. (© Ahron R. Foster)
Rebecca Naomi Jones and Kecia Lewis in George Brant’s Marie and Rosetta. (© Ahron R. Foster)

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play
Johanna Day, Sweat
Jennifer Ehle, Oslo
Jennifer Kidwell, Underground Railroad Game
Kecia Lewis, Marie and Rosetta
Maryann Plunkett, Women of a Certain Age

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Michael Aronov, Oslo
Charlie Cox, Incognito
Matthew Maher, Othello
Justice Smith, YEN
Paco Tolson, Vietgone

Max Gordon Moore and Nana Mensah in MAN FROM NEBRASKA (Photo: Joan Marcus)
Max Gordon Moore and Nana Mensah in MAN FROM NEBRASKA (Photo: Joan Marcus)

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Jocelyn Bioh, Everybody
Hannah Cabell, The Moors
Randy Graff, The Babylon Line
Ari Graynor, YEN
Nana Mensah, Man From Nebraska

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical
Ato Blankson-Wood, The Total Bent
Shuler Hensley, Sweet Charity
Patrick Page, Hadestown
Ben Platt, Dear Evan Hansen
Jeremy Secomb, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Emily Padgett, Donald Jones, Jr., Sutton Foster, Joel Perez, Cody Williams. Photo Credit: Monique Carboni
Emily Padgett, Donald Jones, Jr., Sutton Foster, Joel Perez, Cody Williams. Photo Credit: Monique Carboni

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical
Sutton Foster, Sweet Charity
Amber Gray, Hadestown
Jo Lampert, Joan of Arc: Into the Fire
Katrina Lenk, The Band’s Visit
Siobhan McCarthy, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Nathan Lee Graham, The View UpStairs
Gus Halper, Ride the Cyclone
Joel Perez, Sweet Charity
Ari’el Stachel, The Band’s Visit
Chris Sullivan, Hadestown

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Asmeret Ghebremichael, Sweet Charity
Rachel Bay Jones, Dear Evan Hansen
Betsy Morgan, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Emily Rohm, Ride the Cyclone
Karen Ziemba, Kid Victory

Outstanding Scenic Design
Scott Davis, Ride the Cyclone
Rachel Hauck, Hadestown
Laura Jellinek, A Life
Mimi Lien, Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s The Sandbox, María Irene Fornés’ Drowning, and Adrienne Kennedy’s Funnyhouse of a Negro
Jason Sherwood, The View UpStairs

Outstanding Costume Design
Montana Blanco, The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World AKA the Negro Book of the Dead
Tilly Grimes, Underground Railroad Game
Susan Hilferty, Love, Love, Love
Sarah Laux, The Band’s Visit
Emily Rebholz, Indecent

Outstanding Lighting Design
Mark Barton, Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s The Sandbox, María Irene Fornés’ Drowning, and Adrienne Kennedy’s Funnyhouse of a Negro
Jane Cox, Othello
Greg Hofmann, Ride the Cyclone
Amy Mae, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Ben Stanton, YEN

Outstanding Sound Design
Mikhail Fiksel, A Life
Robert Kaplowitz, Hadestown
Stowe Nelson, Small Mouth Sounds
Nevin Steinberg, Wakey, Wakey
Matt Stine, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Outstanding Projection Design
Elaine McCarthy, Notes From The Field
Duncan McLean, Privacy
Jared Mezzochi, Vietgone
Peter Nigrini, Dear Evan Hansen
Peter Nigrini, Wakey, Wakey

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

John Earl Jelks, Johanna Day, Carlo Albán, James Colby, Khris Davis, Will Pullen, Lance Coadie Williams, Michelle Wilson and Alison Wright Open in Broadway Debut of Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT

Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus

Lynn Nottage’s Broadway debut of her new play SWEAT, featuring Tony Award Nominees John Earl Jelks (Brucie) and Johanna Day (Tracey), Carlo Albán (Oscar), James Colby (Stan), Khris Davis (Chris), Will Pullen (Jason), Lance Coadie Williams (Evan), Michelle Wilson (Cynthia) and Alison Wright (Jessie), opens tonight at Broadway’s Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street).

Photo Flash: First Look at Johanna Day, Michelle Wilson, Khris Davis and More in Lynn Nottage's SWEAT on Broadway
Alison Wright as Jessie, Johanna Day as Tracey and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia. Photo by Joan Marcus

Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s new play Sweat, directed by Kate Whoriskey enjoyed a sold out, critically acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater and began previews on March 4th.

Tickets for the Broadway production of Sweat can be purchased via Telecharge.com or by calling 212-239-6200.

Photo Flash: First Look at Johanna Day, Michelle Wilson, Khris Davis and More in Lynn Nottage's SWEAT on Broadway
Johanna Day as Tracey, Alison Wright as Jessie and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia. Photo by Joan Marcus
Photo Flash: First Look at Johanna Day, Michelle Wilson, Khris Davis and More in Lynn Nottage's SWEAT on Broadway
Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and JohAnna Day as Tracey. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sweat was named as one of five finalists for the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History. Sweat was chosen as one of the Best Plays of 2016 by The New York TimesWall Street JournalLos Angeles TimesTime Out New YorkThe Star-LedgerThe Bergen RecordDeadline, The WrapThe Huffington PostTheatermania, and Broadway World.

Photo Flash: First Look at Johanna Day, Michelle Wilson, Khris Davis and More in Lynn Nottage's SWEAT on Broadway
Will Pullen as Jason and Khris Davis as Chris. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sweat was co-commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and D.C.’s Arena Stage. The play received its world premiere at OSF in July 2015, in a sold-out run. The production subsequently played an acclaimed run at Arena Stage in January 2016. Sweat played an acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater in November 2016, where it was extended three times, with critics writing about the play’s breathtaking timeliness, compassion, and power.

Johanna Day as Tracey and Carlo Alban as Oscar. Photo by Joan Marcus
Johanna Day as Tracey and Carlo Alban as Oscar. Photo by Joan Marcus
Will Pullen as Jason and Khris Davis as Chris. Photo by Joan Marcus
Will Pullen as Jason and Khris Davis as Chris. Photo by Joan Marcus

With warm humor and tremendous heart, Lynn Nottage’s Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat.

Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus
Carlo Alban (in white apron) as Oscar, John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby as Stan, JohAnna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus

Kate Whoriskey directs this stunning new play about the collision of race, class, family and friendship, and the tragic, unintended costs of community without opportunity.

John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby (standing behind the bar) as Stan, Michelle Wilsonas Cynthia, Johanna Day as Tracey and Alison Wright as Jessie . Photo by Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks as Brucie, James Colby (standing behind the bar) as Stan, Michelle Wilsonas Cynthia, Johanna Day as Tracey and Alison Wright as Jessie . Photo by Joan Marcus

The creative team for Sweat features John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Jennifer Moeller (costume design), Peter Kaczorowski (lighting design), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (original music and sound design), and Jeff Sugg (projection design).

Khris Davis as Chris and Lance Coadie Williams as Evan. Photo by Joan Marcus
Khris Davis as Chris and Lance Coadie Williams as Evan. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sweat is produced on Broadway by Stuart Thompson, Louise L. Gund, Tulchin Bartner Productions, Jon B. Platt, Roy Furman, Len Blavatnik, Shelly Mitchell, Scott Rudin, Kevin Emrick, True Love Productions, John Gore, Deborah Taylor/Richard Winkler, and The Public Theater.

Johanna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia, Carlo Alban (standing in background) as Oscar and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus
Johanna Day as Tracey, Michelle Wilson as Cynthia, Carlo Alban (standing in background) as Oscar and Alison Wright as Jessie. Photo by Joan Marcus

Each day beginning at 10:00 AM, a limited amount of Mobile Rush tickets will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Rush tickets will be sold exclusively by TodayTix for $32. To gain access to the Rush tickets, ticket-buyers must download the TodayTix app and unlock the functionality by sharing on their Facebook or Twitter pages. Tickets will be available for pick up via TodayTix concierge at Studio 54 thirty minutes prior to the performance. Mobile Rush concludes when inventory has sold out or two hours before the performance.

Alison Wright as Jessie, Johanna Day as Tracey, Khris Davis as Chris, James Colby as Stan, Carlo Alban as Oscar and Will Pullen as Jason. Photo by Joan Marcus
Alison Wright as Jessie, Johanna Day as Tracey, Khris Davis as Chris, James Colby as Stan, Carlo Alban as Oscar and Will Pullen as Jason. Photo by Joan Marcus
Alison Wright as Jessie, Will Pullen as Jason and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia. Photo by Joan Marcus
Alison Wright as Jessie, Will Pullen as Jason and Michelle Wilson as Cynthia. Photo by Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and John Earl Jelks as Brucie. Photo by Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson as Cynthia and John Earl Jelks as Brucie. Photo by Joan Marcus

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Lynn Nottage (Playwright) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and screenwriter. Her plays include: Sweat (Susan Smith Blackburn Prize), By The Way, Meet Vera Stark, Ruined, Intimate Apparel, Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine, Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers; and POOF!. Nottage is the recipient of a PEN/Laura Pels Master Dramatist Award, Doris Duke Artist Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship, Steinberg “Mimi” Distinguished Playwright Award, Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award, the inaugural Horton Foote Prize, Obie Awards, Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award, NY Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, Outer Critics Circle Award, AudelcoAwards, Lilly Award, Helen Hayes Award, Lee Reynolds Award, NBT Fest’s August Wilson Playwriting Award and a Guggenheim Grant. She’s a member of The Dramatists Guild and the WGAE.

Kate Whoriskey (Director) most recently directed the world premiere of Sweat at Arena Stage and Oregon Shakespeare Festival and its off-Broadway production at the Public. She has also collaborated with Lynn Nottage on the world premieres of Ruined, Fabulation and Intimate Apparel. Her NY credits include Circle in the Square, The Public, Second Stage, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center Theatre, the Vineyard Theatre, Theatre for A New Audience, and Playwrights Horizons. Nominated for a Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel for her work on Ruined, she has worked regionally at The Goodman Theatre, South Coast Rep, The Geffen, The American Repertory Theatre, the Shakespeare theatre, the Huntington, Baltimore Center Stage, Perseverance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Sundance TheatreLab. Internationally, she directed Magdalena at the Chatelet theatre in Paris and Teatro Municipal de Sao Paolo.

CARLO ALBÁN (Oscar) originated the role of Oscar in the world premiere production of Sweat at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. In New York, he has worked with The Public, TFANA, Intar, Vampire Cowboys, Rattlestick and LAByrinth Theater Company, among others. Regional credits include the Mark Taper Forum, Yale Rep, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Dallas Theater Center and the Guthrie. Television credits range from a five-year series regular on Sesame Street to recurring roles on OZ and Prison Break. Carlo has also worked extensively in film, including roles in 21 Grams (Alejandro González Iñárritu), Whip It (Drew Barrymore) and Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan) in a career that spans more than twenty-five years. Carlo is a member of LAByrinth Theater Company.

James Colby (Stan). Theater credits include: The Public Theater, The Roundabout, Manhattan Theater Cub, Playwirghts Horizon, New York Theater Workshop, Manhattan Class Company, Primary Stages, Symphony Space, Westside Theater. Was an associate artist at the Hartford Stage Company performing many of William’s and Oneill’ major works, as well as numerous regional theaters across the country. TV: “Taxi Brooklyn” (series reg), “Waterfront” (series reg),” “Law & Order,” “Limitless,” “Blindspot,” “Madoff,” “Divorce (recurr),” “Jessica Jones,” “Gotham,” “Blacklist,” “Chicago PD,” “Criminal Intent,” “Deception” (recurr), “L&O SVU,” “Forever,” “Blue Bloods,” “Rescue Me,” “NYPD Blue,” “The Practice,” as well as many others. Film: Patriots Day, Demolition, Inside Llewyn Davis, Tower Heist, The Drop, The Immigrant, Safe, The Amazing Spiderman 2, What Masie Knew, Solitary Man, The Company Men, Anatomy of the Tide, Clutter, The Opponent, The Interpreter

Khris Davis (Chris) made his NY stage debut as the star of Marco Ramirez’s The Royale at Lincoln Center Theatre. Loosely based on the life of heavyweight boxer Jack Johnson, Davis’ performance earned him the 2017 Clive Barnes Award for Theater, 2016 Obie “Performance Award,” 2016 Theatre World Award and 2016 Drama Desk Award. He was also nominated for the 2016 Drama League Awards and was featured among Vogue Magazine’s “Stars to Watch in 2016.” Davis is among the original cast of The Public Theater’s production of Sweat by Lynn Nottage. He can be seen next making his Broadway debut in Sweat and is also in Kathryn Bigelow’s upcoming film Untitled Detroit Project.

JohAnna Day (Tracey). Tony Award Nomination – Best Supporting Actress – Proof. Drama Desk Award Nomination for Outstanding Actress in Edward Albee’s Peter and Jerry at Second Stage. Obie Award and The Lili Award for Appropriate at Signature Theatre. Broadway: You Can’t Take It With You, August: Osage County & Lombardi. World Premiere of Carly Mensch’s Oblivion at Westport Country Playhouse, World Premiere of Will Eno’s The Realistic Joneses at Yale Repertory Theatre. Created the role of Zippy in Winnie Holzman’s Choice at The Huntington Theatre. Helen Hayes Award as Leading Actress in a Resident Play – The Rainmaker at Arena Stage. Appeared in the original cast production of How I Learned To Drive at The Vineyard Theatre.Television: Currently appearing on the CBS television series – Madam Secretary (3 Years) as well as The Knick, The Americans, Masters of Sex, Alpha House, Royal Pains. Film: Great Gilley Hopkins, How Far She Went, The Breatharian and Unbreakable.

John Earl Jelks (Brucie). Tony Nominee, August Wilson’s Radio Golf. After appearing on Broadway in Gem of the Ocean, Radio Golf & Holler If YaHear Me, Jelks is excited to return to Broadway in Lynn Nottage’s Sweat, directed by the brilliant Kate Whoriskey. After a successful run of Sweat at the Public, Jelks recently appeared at The Public Theater in Head of Passes and ToasT. Select Off-Broadway credits include: The Break of Noon, Magnolia, Two Trains Running, Fetch Clay, Make Man and Sunset Baby. Recently honored with an Obie Award for Fetch Clay, Make Man and Sunset Baby. Other awards: L.A. Ovation Award, NAACP Theatre Award, AUDELCO Award. Film/TV credits include: Snap, The Miraculous, Miracle at St. Anna, “Law & Order: SVU” and “Blue Bloods.”

Will Pullen (Jason). Recent: Tennessee Williams’ Rose Tattoo; Wendy Wasserstein’s An American Daughter (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Past Theater: Punk Rock (MCC; Lucille Lortel Award nomination); The Wayside Motor Inn (Signature TheatreCompany; Clive Barnes Award nomination); Your Mother’s Copy Of The Kama Sutra (Playwrights Horizons); Marie Antoinette (Soho Rep) and Scarcity (Rattlestick). TV/Film: “The Americans,” “The Good Wife,” “Elementary,” Goat (d. Andrew Neel), which premiered at Sundance Film Festival 2016. Proud member of Rising Phoenix Rep and The Actor’s Center.

Lance Coadie Williams (Evan) theatre credits include Sweat/The Public Theatre; War, Shows for Days / Lincoln Center Theatre; BootyCandy/ Playwrights Horizons, (Obie Award Winner); Sucker Punch, Marcus; or the Secret of Sweet/ Studio Theatre; BootyCandy, The Convert / The Wilma Theatre; The Children’s Hour, Fences, My Children! My Africa! , Blues for an Alabama Sky / Everyman Theatre ; Fences/ Roundhouse Theatre; the title role of Hamlet/ The Baltimore Shakespeare Festival; The Oedipus Plays/ The Shakespeare Theatre; BootyCandy/ Woolly Mammoth; Love’s Fire, Shoot the Piano Player/ The Berkshire Theatre Festival . He also had a recurring role on HBO’s “The Wire”. Lance is a Graduate of the Baltimore School for the Arts and is a Graduate of SUNY PURCHASE.

Michelle Wilson (Cynthia). Broadway: A Raisin in the Sun. New York: Sweat (Public Theater), Detroit ’67 (Public Theater), New Jersey Performing Arts Center, The Lark, Classical Theater of Harlem and the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference. Selected regional: Detroit ’67 (Baltimore Center Stage and Detroit Public Theatre), Follow Me to Nellie’s, The People Before the Park (Premiere Stages), Fahrenheit 451, For Colored Girls (Steppenwolf Theatre Company), Two Trains Running (Goodman Theatre), Indiana Rep, Stella Adler Theater (Los Angeles). TV/Film: “Blue Bloods,” “E.R.,” Reverse Cowgirl, Nehemiah (2014 Pan African Film Fest), Sink, and The Bicycle (2014 Pan African Film Fest).

Alison Wright (Jessie) is best known for her critically acclaimed role as FBI secretary Martha Hanson on four seasons of the Emmy Nominated FX series “The Americans.” She will once again join forces with FX, as a series regular in the network’s highly anticipated anthology series “FEUD: Bette and Joan” from Ryan Murphy premiering March 5th. In addition to “Feud,” Wright currently recurs opposite Bryan Cranstonand Giovanni Ribisi in Amazon’s new series “Sneaky Pete.” Recent film credits include HBO’s Confirmation as well as the Gavin O’Connor-Ben Affleck film The Accountant. On stage, Wright is best known for her roles in the Off-Broadway production of The New Group’s Marie & Bruce (opposite Marisa Tomei) and Rafta Rafta.

Click here for the Lia Chang archives and here for the Lia Chang Photography archives.

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

Tony Award Nominees John Earl Jelks and Johanna Day, Carlo Albán, James Colby, Khris Davis, Will Pullen, Lance Coadie Williams, Michelle Wilson and Alison Wright Begin Previews of Broadway Debut of Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT

John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Tony Award Nominees John Earl Jelks (Brucie) and Johanna Day (Tracey), Carlo Albán (Oscar), James Colby (Stan), Khris Davis (Chris), Will Pullen (Jason), Lance Coadie Williams (Evan), Michelle Wilson (Cynthia) and Alison Wright (Jessie) kick off previews of the Broadway debut of Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT tonight.

Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s new play Sweat, directed by Kate Whoriskey, which enjoyed a sold out, critically acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater,  transfers to Broadway’s Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street) on March 4th, with opening night set for March 26, 2017.

Tickets for the Broadway production of Sweat can be purchased via Telecharge.com or by calling 212-239-6200.

Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Sweat was recently named as one of five finalists for the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History. Sweat was chosen as one of the Best Plays of 2016 by The New York TimesWall Street JournalLos Angeles TimesTime Out New YorkThe Star-LedgerThe Bergen RecordDeadline, The WrapThe Huffington PostTheatermania, and Broadway World.

Michelle Wilson and James Colby. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson and James Colby. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Sweat was co-commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and D.C.’s Arena Stage. The play received its world premiere at OSF in July 2015, in a sold-out run. The production subsequently played an acclaimed run at Arena Stage in January 2016. Sweat played an acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater in November 2016, where it was extended three times, with critics writing about the play’s breathtaking timeliness, compassion, and power.

Johanna Day and Carlo Alban. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Johanna Day and Carlo Alban. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

With warm humor and tremendous heart, Lynn Nottage’s Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat.

Will Pullen, James Colby, and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Will Pullen, James Colby, and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Kate Whoriskey directs this stunning new play about the collision of race, class, family and friendship, and the tragic, unintended costs of community without opportunity.

John Earl Jelks and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

The creative team for Sweat features John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Jennifer Moeller (costume design), Peter Kaczorowski (lighting design), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (original music and sound design), and Jeff Sugg (projection design).

Khris Davis and Will Pullen. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Khris Davis and Will Pullen. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Sweat is produced on Broadway by Stuart Thompson, Louise L. Gund, Tulchin Bartner Productions, Jon B. Platt, Roy Furman, Len Blavatnik, Shelly Mitchell, Scott Rudin, Kevin Emrick, True Love Productions, John Gore, Deborah Taylor/Richard Winkler, and The Public Theater.

Michelle Wilson, James Colby and Johanna Day. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson, James Colby and Johanna Day. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Each day beginning at 10:00 AM, a limited amount of Mobile Rush tickets will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Rush tickets will be sold exclusively by TodayTix for $32. To gain access to the Rush tickets, ticket-buyers must download the TodayTix app and unlock the functionality by sharing on their Facebook or Twitter pages. Tickets will be available for pick up via TodayTix concierge at Studio 54 thirty minutes prior to the performance. Mobile Rush concludes when inventory has sold out or two hours before the performance.

Michelle Wilson and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Lynn Nottage (Playwright) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and screenwriter. Her plays include: Sweat (Susan Smith Blackburn Prize), By The Way, Meet Vera Stark, Ruined, Intimate Apparel, Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine, Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers; and POOF!. Nottage is the recipient of a PEN/Laura Pels Master Dramatist Award, Doris Duke Artist Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship, Steinberg “Mimi” Distinguished Playwright Award, Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award, the inaugural Horton Foote Prize, Obie Awards, Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award, NY Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, Outer Critics Circle Award, AudelcoAwards, Lilly Award, Helen Hayes Award, Lee Reynolds Award, NBT Fest’s August Wilson Playwriting Award and a Guggenheim Grant. She’s a member of The Dramatists Guild and the WGAE.

Kate Whoriskey (Director) most recently directed the world premiere of Sweat at Arena Stage and Oregon Shakespeare Festival and its off-Broadway production at the Public. She has also collaborated with Lynn Nottage on the world premieres of Ruined, Fabulation and Intimate Apparel. Her NY credits include Circle in the Square, The Public, Second Stage, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center Theatre, the Vineyard Theatre, Theatre for A New Audience, and Playwrights Horizons. Nominated for a Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel for her work on Ruined, she has worked regionally at The Goodman Theatre, South Coast Rep, The Geffen, The American Repertory Theatre, the Shakespeare theatre, the Huntington, Baltimore Center Stage, Perseverance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Sundance TheatreLab. Internationally, she directed Magdalena at the Chatelet theatre in Paris and Teatro Municipal de Sao Paolo.

CARLO ALBÁN (Oscar) originated the role of Oscar in the world premiere production of Sweat at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. In New York, he has worked with The Public, TFANA, Intar, Vampire Cowboys, Rattlestick and LAByrinth Theater Company, among others. Regional credits include the Mark Taper Forum, Yale Rep, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Dallas Theater Center and the Guthrie. Television credits range from a five-year series regular on Sesame Street to recurring roles on OZ and Prison Break. Carlo has also worked extensively in film, including roles in 21 Grams (Alejandro González Iñárritu), Whip It (Drew Barrymore) and Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan) in a career that spans more than twenty-five years. Carlo is a member of LAByrinth Theater Company.

James Colby (Stan). Theater credits include: The Public Theater, The Roundabout, Manhattan Theater Cub, Playwirghts Horizon, New York Theater Workshop, Manhattan Class Company, Primary Stages, Symphony Space, Westside Theater. Was an associate artist at the Hartford Stage Company performing many of William’s and Oneill’ major works, as well as numerous regional theaters across the country. TV: “Taxi Brooklyn” (series reg), “Waterfront” (series reg),” “Law & Order,” “Limitless,” “Blindspot,” “Madoff,” “Divorce (recurr),” “Jessica Jones,” “Gotham,” “Blacklist,” “Chicago PD,” “Criminal Intent,” “Deception” (recurr), “L&O SVU,” “Forever,” “Blue Bloods,” “Rescue Me,” “NYPD Blue,” “The Practice,” as well as many others. Film: Patriots Day, Demolition, Inside Llewyn Davis, Tower Heist, The Drop, The Immigrant, Safe, The Amazing Spiderman 2, What Masie Knew, Solitary Man, The Company Men, Anatomy of the Tide, Clutter, The Opponent, The Interpreter

Khris Davis (Chris) made his NY stage debut as the star of Marco Ramirez’s The Royale at Lincoln Center Theatre. Loosely based on the life of heavyweight boxer Jack Johnson, Davis’ performance earned him the 2017 Clive Barnes Award for Theater, 2016 Obie “Performance Award,” 2016 Theatre World Award and 2016 Drama Desk Award. He was also nominated for the 2016 Drama League Awards and was featured among Vogue Magazine’s “Stars to Watch in 2016.” Davis is among the original cast of The Public Theater’s production of Sweat by Lynn Nottage. He can be seen next making his Broadway debut in Sweat and is also in Kathryn Bigelow’s upcoming film Untitled Detroit Project.

JohAnna Day (Tracey). Tony Award Nomination – Best Supporting Actress – Proof. Drama Desk Award Nomination for Outstanding Actress in Edward Albee’s Peter and Jerry at Second Stage. Obie Award and The Lili Award for Appropriate at Signature Theatre. Broadway: You Can’t Take It With You, August: Osage County & Lombardi. World Premiere of Carly Mensch’s Oblivion at Westport Country Playhouse, World Premiere of Will Eno’s The Realistic Joneses at Yale Repertory Theatre. Created the role of Zippy in Winnie Holzman’s Choice at The Huntington Theatre. Helen Hayes Award as Leading Actress in a Resident Play – The Rainmaker at Arena Stage. Appeared in the original cast production of How I Learned To Drive at The Vineyard Theatre.Television: Currently appearing on the CBS television series – Madam Secretary (3 Years) as well as The Knick, The Americans, Masters of Sex, Alpha House, Royal Pains. Film: Great Gilley Hopkins, How Far She Went, The Breatharian and Unbreakable.

John Earl Jelks (Brucie). Tony Nominee, August Wilson’s Radio Golf. After appearing on Broadway in Gem of the Ocean, Radio Golf & Holler If YaHear Me, Jelks is excited to return to Broadway in Lynn Nottage’s Sweat, directed by the brilliant Kate Whoriskey. After a successful run of Sweat at the Public, Jelks recently appeared at The Public Theater in Head of Passes and ToasT. Select Off-Broadway credits include: The Break of Noon, Magnolia, Two Trains Running, Fetch Clay, Make Man and Sunset Baby. Recently honored with an Obie Award for Fetch Clay, Make Man and Sunset Baby. Other awards: L.A. Ovation Award, NAACP Theatre Award, AUDELCO Award. Film/TV credits include: Snap, The Miraculous, Miracle at St. Anna, “Law & Order: SVU” and “Blue Bloods.”

Will Pullen (Jason). Recent: Tennessee Williams’ Rose Tattoo; Wendy Wasserstein’s An American Daughter (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Past Theater: Punk Rock (MCC; Lucille Lortel Award nomination); The Wayside Motor Inn (Signature TheatreCompany; Clive Barnes Award nomination); Your Mother’s Copy Of The Kama Sutra (Playwrights Horizons); Marie Antoinette (Soho Rep) and Scarcity (Rattlestick). TV/Film: “The Americans,” “The Good Wife,” “Elementary,” Goat (d. Andrew Neel), which premiered at Sundance Film Festival 2016. Proud member of Rising Phoenix Rep and The Actor’s Center.

Lance Coadie Williams (Evan) theatre credits include Sweat/The Public Theatre; War, Shows for Days / Lincoln Center Theatre; BootyCandy/ Playwrights Horizons, (Obie Award Winner); Sucker Punch, Marcus; or the Secret of Sweet/ Studio Theatre; BootyCandy, The Convert / The Wilma Theatre; The Children’s Hour, Fences, My Children! My Africa! , Blues for an Alabama Sky / Everyman Theatre ; Fences/ Roundhouse Theatre; the title role of Hamlet/ The Baltimore Shakespeare Festival; The Oedipus Plays/ The Shakespeare Theatre; BootyCandy/ Woolly Mammoth; Love’s Fire, Shoot the Piano Player/ The Berkshire Theatre Festival . He also had a recurring role on HBO’s “The Wire”. Lance is a Graduate of the Baltimore School for the Arts and is a Graduate of SUNY PURCHASE.

Michelle Wilson (Cynthia). Broadway: A Raisin in the Sun. New York: Sweat (Public Theater), Detroit ’67 (Public Theater), New Jersey Performing Arts Center, The Lark, Classical Theater of Harlem and the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference. Selected regional: Detroit ’67 (Baltimore Center Stage and Detroit Public Theatre), Follow Me to Nellie’s, The People Before the Park (Premiere Stages), Fahrenheit 451, For Colored Girls (Steppenwolf Theatre Company), Two Trains Running (Goodman Theatre), Indiana Rep, Stella Adler Theater (Los Angeles). TV/Film: “Blue Bloods,” “E.R.,” Reverse Cowgirl, Nehemiah (2014 Pan African Film Fest), Sink, and The Bicycle (2014 Pan African Film Fest).

Alison Wright (Jessie) is best known for her critically acclaimed role as FBI secretary Martha Hanson on four seasons of the Emmy Nominated FX series “The Americans.” She will once again join forces with FX, as a series regular in the network’s highly anticipated anthology series “FEUD: Bette and Joan” from Ryan Murphy premiering March 5th. In addition to “Feud,” Wright currently recurs opposite Bryan Cranstonand Giovanni Ribisi in Amazon’s new series “Sneaky Pete.” Recent film credits include HBO’s Confirmation as well as the Gavin O’Connor-Ben Affleck film The Accountant. On stage, Wright is best known for her roles in the Off-Broadway production of The New Group’s Marie & Bruce (opposite Marisa Tomei) and Rafta Rafta.

Click here for the Lia Chang archives and here for the Lia Chang Photography archives.

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

Stephen Adly Guirgis, Dominique Morisseau, Lynn Nottage and Dave Malloy Named Signature Theatre’s New Resident Playwrights

Stephen Adly Guirgis. Photo by Lia Chang
Stephen Adly Guirgis. Photo by Lia Chang
Stephen Adly Guirgis. Photo by Lia Chang

Pulitzer Prize-winner Stephen Adly Guirgis (Between Riverside and Crazy) will join Signature as the Residency One Playwright in the 2017-18 Season. Residency One, Signature’s core one-year Playwright-in-Residence program, is an intensive exploration of a single writer’s body of work. Pulitzer Prize-winner Lynn Nottage (Ruined) will follow Guirgis as the Residency One Playwright during the 2018-19 Season.

In addition, Obie Award-winner Dave Malloy (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812) and Kennedy Prize for Drama Award-winner Dominique Morisseau (Skeleton Crew) will join Signature’s Residency Five program, which guarantees playwrights three premieres over five years. Malloy, who will be the first musical theatre writer to have a residency at Signature, and Morisseau will join current Residency Five playwrights Annie Baker, Martha Clarke, Will Eno, Katori Hall, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Kenneth Lonerganand ReGina Taylor.

“Signature has worked with tremendous playwrights over the past 26 seasons. I am delighted, in my first season as Artistic Director, to welcome these four writers to the company and look forward to giving them an artistic home,” said Artistic Director Paige Evans. “Stephen, Lynn, Dave and Dominique are gifted, dynamic writers whose work explores the human condition in insightful and distinctive ways. I cannot wait to celebrate them and share their work with Signature’s vibrant and diverse community.”

Titles, dates and creative teams will be announced at a later date.

ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHTS:

Stephen Adly Guirgis is a member and former co-artistic director of LAByrinth Theater Company. His plays have been produced on five continents and throughout the United States. His most recent play, Between Riverside and Crazy (dir: Austin Pendleton) premiered at Atlantic Theater Company, moved to Second Stage Theatre, and garnered numerous awards including the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Other plays include: The Motherf***er with the Hat (6 Tony nominations, including Best Play, dir: Anna D Shapiro), Den of Thieves (directed by Max Daniels), Dominica The Fat Ugly Ho (dir: Adam Rapp), as well as Our Lady of 121st Street, Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train, In Arabia We’d All Be Kings, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Public Theater) and The Little Flower of East Orange (Public Theater) – all five directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman and world premiered at LAByrinth Theater Company. In London, his plays have premiered at The Donmar Warehouse, The Almeida (dir: Rupert Goold), The Hampstead (Robert Delamere), and at The Arts Theater in the West End (Dir: Philip Seymour Hoffman). As an actor, he has appeared in theatre, film and television, including roles in Alejandro Inarritu’s Oscar-winning Birdman, Kenneth Lonergan’s Margaret, Todd Solondz’s Palindromes, and Brett C. Leonard’s Jailbait opposite Michael Pitt. He co-created and executive produced Netflix’s “The Get Down” with Baz Luhrmann. Other awards include: the Yale Wyndham-Campbell Prize, The Harold & Mimi Steinberg Award, PEN/Laura Pels Award, Whiting Award, TCG fellowship, Fringe First Award, NY Drama Critics Circle, L.A. Drama Critics Prize, and a Lucille Lortel Award. A former violence prevention specialist and H.I.V. educator, he lives in New York City.

Dave Malloy
Dave Malloy

Dave Malloy is a composer/writer/performer/orchestrator/Sound Designer. He has written eleven musicals, including Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, an electropop opera based on a slice of Tolstoy’s War & Peace, now playing on Broadway; Ghost Quartet, a song cycle about love, death, and whiskey; Preludes, a musical fantasia set in the hypnotized mind of Sergei Rachmaninoff; Three Pianos, a drunken romp through Schubert’s “Winterreise”; Black Wizard/Blue Wizard, an escapist RPG fantasy; Beowulf-A Thousand Years of Baggage, an anti-academia rock opera; Beardo, a retelling of the Rasputin myth; Sandwich, a musical about killing animals; and Clown Bible, Genesis to Revelation told through clowns. He has won two Obie Awards, the Richard Rodgers Award, an ASCAP New Horizons Award, and a Jonathan Larson Grant, and has been a MacDowell fellow and Composer-in-Residence at Ars Nova. Future projects include adaptations of Moby-Dick and Shakespeare’s Henriad. He lives in Brooklyn. www.DaveMalloy.com

Dominique Morisseau
Dominique Morisseau

Dominique Morisseau is the author of The Detroit Project (A 3-Play Cycle) which includes the following plays: Skeleton Crew (Atlantic Theater Company), Paradise Blue (Williamstown Theatre Festival), and Detroit ’67 (Public Theater, Classical Theatre of Harlem and NBT). Additional plays include: Sunset Baby (LAByrinth Theater); Blood at the Root (National Black Theatre) and Follow Me To Nellie’s (Premiere Stages). She is an alumna of The Public Theater Emerging Writer’s Group, Women’s Project Lab, and Lark Playwrights Workshop and has developed work at Sundance Lab and Eugene O’Neill Playwrights Conference. Her work has been commissioned by the Hip Hop Theater Festival, Steppenwolf Theater Company, Women’s Project, South Coast Rep, People’s Light and Theatre, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival/Penumbra Theatre. She currently serves as Executive Story Editor on the Showtime series “Shameless.” Awards: Stavis Playwriting Award, NAACP Image Award, Spirit of Detroit Award, Weissberger Award, PoNY Fellowship, Sky-Cooper New American Play Prize, TEER Spirit Trailblazer Award, Steinberg Playwright Award, Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama (Detroit ’67), and OBIE Award (Skeleton Crew).

Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang
Lynn Nottage. Photo by Lia Chang

Lynn Nottage is a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and screenwriter. Her plays include: Sweat (Susan Smith Blackburn Prize); By The Way, Meet Vera Stark; Ruined; Intimate Apparel; Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine; Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers; and POOF!. Nottage is the recipient of a PEN/Laura Pels Master Dramatist Award, Doris Duke Artist Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship, Steinberg “Mimi” Distinguished Playwright Award, Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award, the inaugural Horton Foote Prize, Obie Awards, Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award, NY Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, Outer Critics Circle Award, AUDELCO Awards, Lilly Award, Helen Hayes Award, Lee Reynolds Award, NBT Fest’s August Wilson Playwriting Award and a Guggenheim Grant. She is a member of The Dramatists Guild and the WGAE.

Signature celebrates playwrights and gives them an artistic home. By producing multiple plays by each of its resident writers, Signature offers an in-depth look at these writers’ bodies of work. In addition, Signature engages the writer in every aspect of the creative process. Signature serves its mission through its permanent home at The Pershing Square Signature Center, a three-theatre facility on West 42nd Street designed by Frank Gehry Architects to host Signature’s three distinct playwrights’ residencies and foster a cultural community. At the Center, opened in January 2012, Signature continues its founding Playwrights-in-Residence model as Residency One, a first-of-its-kind, intensive exploration of a single writer’s body of work. Residency Five was launched in 2012 to support multiple playwrights as they build bodies of work by guaranteeing each writer three productions over a five-year period. The Legacy Program, launched during Signature’s 10th Anniversary Season, invites writers from both residencies back for productions of premiere or earlier plays. In 2014 Signature became the first New York City theatre to receive the Regional Theatre Tony Award.

The Pershing Square Signature Center is a major contribution to New York City’s cultural landscape and provides a venue for cultural organizations that supports and encourages collaboration among artists throughout the space. In addition to its three intimate theatres, the Center features a Studio Theatre, rehearsal studio, and a public café, bar and bookstore. Through the Signature Ticket Initiative: A Generation of Access, Signature has also made an unprecedented commitment to making its productions accessible by underwriting the cost of initial run tickets, currently priced at $30, through 2031.

Founded in 1991 by James Houghton, Signature has presented entire seasons of the work of Edward Albee, Lee Blessing, Horton Foote, María Irene Fornés, Athol Fugard, John Guare, A.R. Gurney, David Henry Hwang, Bill Irwin, Adrienne Kennedy, Tony Kushner, Romulus Linney, Charles Mee, Arthur Miller, Sam Shepard, Paula Vogel, Naomi Wallace, August Wilson, Lanford Wilson, and a season celebrating the historic Negro Ensemble Company. Suzan-Lori Parks is the current Residency One playwright. Signature’s current Residency Five playwrights are Annie Baker, Martha Clarke, Will Eno, Katori Hall, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Kenneth Lonergan and ReGina Taylor. In addition to the Regional Theatre Tony Award®, Signature’s productions and its resident writers have been recognized with the Pulitzer Prize, Lucille LortelAwards, Obie Awards, Drama Desk Awards, and AUDELCO Awards, among many other distinctions.

Qui Nguyen’s VIETGONE and Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT Among Finalists for 2017 Edward M. Kennedy Prize

Raymond Lee, Jon Hoche and Maureen Sebastian, in South Coast Repertory's 2015 world premiere of Vietgone by Qui Nguyen. Photo by Debora Robinson/SCR.

Qui Nguyen’s Vietgone, produced by South Coast Repertory, and Lynn Nottage’s Sweat, produced by Oregon Shakespeare Festival, are among five finalists recently announced by Columbia University Libraries for the 2017 Edward M. Kennedy Prize.

Raymond Lee, Jon Hoche and Maureen Sebastian, in South Coast Repertory's 2015 world premiere of Vietgone by Qui Nguyen. Photo by Debora Robinson/SCR.
Raymond Lee, Jon Hoche and Maureen Sebastian, in South Coast Repertory’s 2015 world premiere of Vietgone by Qui Nguyen. Photo by Debora Robinson/SCR.

Innovative, fresh and visually appealing, Nguyen’s singular voice and vision is on display with Vietgone, a modern twist on the All-American love story, borrowing elements from the world of up-to-the-minute popular culture to recreate the playwright’s own parents’ meeting, ranging from hilarity to heart-wrenching drama. It’s the classic story of boy meets girl – except this boy and girl are refugees from the Vietnam War newly settled in a relocation camp inside Middle America. Manhattan Theatre Club recently presented the  New York premiere of Vietgone.

Hangin’ with VIETGONE Stars Raymond Lee, Paco Tolson, Samantha Quan, Jon Hoche and Jennifer Ikeda

Vietgone is a recipient of the Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award and the winner of the 2015 Harold and Mimi Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award recognizing playwrights for scripts that premiered professionally outside New York City during 2014.

Qui Nguyen’s “Vietgone” wins $25,000 Steinberg/ATCA Award for 2015 

Stephen Michael Spencer, Jack Willis, Tramell Tillman, and Carlo Albán as Jason, Stan, Chris, and Oscar in the 2015 OSF production of Sweat.
Stephen Michael Spencer, Jack Willis, Tramell Tillman, and Carlo Albán as Jason, Stan, Chris, and Oscar in the 2015 OSF production of Sweat.

With warm humor and tremendous heart, Lynn Nottage’s Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat.

Helmed by Kate Whoriskey, Sweat, recently enjoyed a sold out, critically acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater, and will transfer to Broadway’s Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street). Broadway performances of Sweat, produced by Stuart Thompson and Louise Gund, will begin March 4 for a March 26, 2017 opening.

Tony Award Nominees John Earl Jelks and Johanna Day, Carlo Albán, James Colby, Khris Davis, Will Pullen, Lance Coadie Williams and Michelle Wilson Return for the Broadway Debut of Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT

Roe by Lisa Loomer, produced by Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Berkeley Rep, and Arena Stage; 24 Hour History of Popular Music by Taylor Mac, produced by Pomegranate Arts and Natures Darlings; and Indecent by Paula Vogel, produced by Yale Repertory Theatre, are in contention.

The Edward M. Kennedy Prize is given annually through Columbia University to a new play or musical that, in the words of the Prize’s mission statement, “…enlists theater’s power to explore the past of the United States, to participate meaningfully in the great issues of our day through the public conversation, grounded in historical understanding, that is essential to the functioning of a democracy.”

2017 marks the fifth anniversary of the Prize. Previous winners include: Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda (2016); Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2, & 3 by Suzan-Lori Parks (2015), Detroit ’67 by Dominique Morisseau (2014), All the Way by Robert Schenkkan and The Body of an American by Dan O’Brien (2013). The size of the award places the Kennedy Prize among the most generous given for dramatic writing, and indeed for writing in America, while the commitment to developing publicly accessible educational content makes the prize unique among dramatic and literary awards.

Suzan-Lori Parks’ FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS, PARTS 1, 2 & 3 is the 2015 Winner of the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History

The Prize Board of Governors includes Mandy Hackett, Associate Director, The Public Theater, New York, NY; Jean Howard, George Delacorte Professor in the Humanities and Chair, Department of English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University; Alice Kessler-Harris, R. Gordon Hoxie Professor of American History in Honor of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Columbia University; Tony Kushner, Pulitzer Prize Winning Playwright; Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith, Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient; Amanda Smith, author.

Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith created the prize to honor the life and legacy of her late brother, Senator Ted Kennedy. Finalists were selected through nominations from a group of 20 theater professionals around the country. The jury will meet at Columbia in February 2017. The Prize will be announced on or after February 22, 2017, the anniversary of Senator Kennedy’s birth. The winning play will receive an award of $100,000, and will be honored in a ceremony at Columbia later this spring.

Columbia University Libraries is one of the top five academic research library systems in North America. The collections include over 13 million volumes, over 160,000 journals and serials, as well as extensive electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, maps, and graphic and audio-visual materials. The Libraries employs more than 400 professional and support staff and hosts over 4.7 million visitors each year. The website of the Libraries is the gateway to its services and resources: library.columbia.edu.

Click here for the Lia Chang archives and here for the Lia Chang Photography archives.

Tony Award Nominees John Earl Jelks and Johanna Day, Carlo Albán, James Colby, Khris Davis, Will Pullen, Lance Coadie Williams and Michelle Wilson Return for the Broadway Debut of Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT

John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Key Art for SWEAT on Broadway. Original Off-Broadway cast photo by Pari Dukovic; Design by Drewdesignco / Area of Practice
Key Art for SWEAT on Broadway. Original Off-Broadway cast photo by Pari Dukovic; Design by Drewdesignco / Area of Practice

Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s new play Sweat, directed by Kate Whoriskey, which enjoyed a sold out, critically acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater, will transfer to Broadway’s Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street). Broadway performances of Sweat, produced by Stuart Thompson and Louise Gund, will begin March 4 for a March 26, 2017 opening.

Tickets for the Broadway production of Sweat can be purchased via Telecharge.com or by calling 212-239-6200.

Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Tony Award nominees John Earl Jelks (Brucie) and Johanna Day (Tracey), Carlo Albán (Oscar), James Colby (Stan), Khris Davis (Chris), Will Pullen (Jason), Lance Coadie Williams (Evan), and Michelle Wilson (Cynthia) from the original cast are on board. Casting for the role of Jessie will be announced at a later date.

Michelle Wilson and James Colby. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson and James Colby. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Sweat was recently named as one of five finalists for the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History. Sweat was chosen as one of the Best Plays of 2016 by The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Time Out New York, The Star-Ledger, The Bergen Record, Deadline, The Wrap, The Huffington Post, Theatermania, and Broadway World.

Johanna Day and Carlo Alban. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Johanna Day and Carlo Alban. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Sweat was co-commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and D.C.’s Arena Stage. The play received its world premiere at OSF in July 2015, in a sold-out run. The production subsequently played an acclaimed run at Arena Stage in January 2016. Sweat played an acclaimed engagement at New York’s Public Theater in November 2016, where it was extended three times, with critics writing about the play’s breathtaking timeliness, compassion, and power.

Will Pullen, James Colby, and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Will Pullen, James Colby, and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

With warm humor and tremendous heart, Lynn Nottage’s Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat.

John Earl Jelks and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Michelle Wilson. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Kate Whoriskey directs this stunning new play about the collision of race, class, family and friendship, and the tragic, unintended costs of community without opportunity.

Khris Davis and Will Pullen. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Khris Davis and Will Pullen. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson, James Colby and Johanna Day. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson, James Colby and Johanna Day. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

The creative team for Sweat features John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Jennifer Moeller (costume design), Peter Kaczorowski (lighting design), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (original music and sound design), and Jeff Sugg (projection design).

Michelle Wilson and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
Michelle Wilson and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
John Earl Jelks and Khris Davis. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Click here for the Lia Chang archives and here for the Lia Chang Photography archives.