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Wednesday, 07 December 2011 14:11

Signature Theatre Announces Initial Casting for HURT VILLAGE & Tickets Now on Sale

INITIAL CASTING CONFIRMED FOR
SIGNATURE THEATRE’S PRODUCTION OF

HURT VILLAGE

A World Premiere by KATORI HALL

Directed by PATRICIA MCGREGOR

PERFORMANCES BEGIN FEBRUARY 7; OPENING NIGHT IS FEBRUARY 27
INAUGURAL PRODUCTION IN THE ROMULUS LINNEY COURTYARD THEATRE
AT THE COMPANY’S NEW HOME SIGNATURE CENTER 

TICKETS NOW ON SALE FOR HURT VILLAGE& ATHOL FUGARD'S BLOOD KNOT

VISIT WWW.SIGNATURETHEATRE.ORG TO PURCHASE TICKETS

Signature Theatre (James Houghton, Founding Artistic Director; Erika Mallin, Executive Director) is pleased to announce initial casting for the world premiere production of Katori Hall’s HURT VILLAGE, directed by Patricia McGregor. HURT VILLAGE runs February 7 – March 18, 2012 with a February 27th opening night and is the inaugural production in the The Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre at the Company’s new home Signature Center (480 West 42nd Street between Dyer and  10th Avenues).

{module ad_left_body}Single tickets are now on sale for HURT VILLAGE and Athol Fugard's BLOOD KNOT, which runs January 31 – March 11, 2012 and is the inaugural production in The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre. All regularly priced single tickets ($75) for the initial run of both shows will be made available for $25 through The Signature Ticket Initiative: A Decade of Access. Tickets and season subscriptions can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 212-244-7529 or online at www.signaturetheatre.org.

The HURT VILLAGE cast will feature Marsha Stephanie Blake (The Merchant of Venice; Joe Turner's Come and Gone), Amari Cheatom (Zooman and the Sign), Nicholas Christopher (Rent, In the Heights), Corey Hawkins (Suicide, Incorporated), Ron Cephas Jones (Gem of the Ocean, The Bridge Project), Joaquina Kalukango (Godspell), Tonya Pinkins (Caroline, or Change; “All My Children”) and Saycon Sengbloh (Fela!, Hair). Additional casting will be announced at a later date.

The design team includes David Gallo (Set and Projection Design), Clint Ramos (Costume Design), Sarah Sidman (Lighting Design), Rob Kaplowitz (Sound Design), Cookie Jordan (Hair and Make-Up Design), Kate Wilson (Dialect Coach), Rick Sordelet (Fight Direction), and Luqman Brown (Additional Music).  Casting is by Telsey + Company. The Production Stage Manager is Jane Pole and Assistant Stage Manager is Megan J. Alvord.

It’s the end of a long summer in Hurt Village, a housing project in Memphis, Tennessee. A government Hope Grant means relocation for many of the project’s residents, including Cookie, a thirteen year-old aspiring rapper, along with her mother Crank and great-grandmother Big Mama. As the family prepares to move, Cookie’s father Buggy unexpectedly returns from a tour of duty in Iraq. Ravaged by the war, Buggy struggles to find a position in his disintegrating community, along with a place in his daughter’s wounded heart. A bold, gritty and devastating work, HURT VILLAGE earned Katori Hall the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, given annually to an outstanding female playwright. HURT VILLAGE has received a 2011 Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award from TCG.

Signature Theatre recently announced its pledge to A Decade of Access, the next phase of the Signature Ticket Initiative, an unprecedented program which makes great theatre accessible to the broadest possible audience, which Signature initiated in 2005.  For the next ten years, Signature is committed to making all regularly-priced subscription and single tickets ($75) during the initial announced run available for $25. Signature is committed to raising the $20 Million in funds needed for A Decade of Access and is pursuing lead sponsorship.  Seed funding has been provided by Margot Adams, Time Warner Inc., the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the New York City Council. Signature is also pleased to welcome the Ford Foundation as a new supporter of the Signature Ticket Initiative.

2011-2012 SEASON OVERVIEW

RESIDENCY ONE - ATHOL FUGARD SERIES

BLOOD KNOT

Written and Directed by Athol Fugard
January 31 – March 11, 2012
Tickets on sale now

Between patchwork walls in a one-room shack, two biracial South African brothers grapple with crippling poverty and lonely isolation. Fugard’s revolutionary breakthrough play is a searing indictment of apartheid and one of his most celebrated works.

MY CHILDREN! MY AFRICA!

By Athol Fugard
Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson
May 1 – June 10, 2012

Written in 1989 shortly before the end of apartheid, My Children! My Africa! presents an honest and unflinching portrait of a country on the brink of revolution, and is a testament to the power and potential of youth, hope, and ideas.

THE TRAIN DRIVER                                  *** NEW YORK PREMIERE ***

Written and Directed by Athol Fugard
August 14 – September 23, 2012

Based on a true story, The Train Driver is a soulful exploration of guilt, suffering and the powerful bonds that grow between strangers.

LEGACY PROGRAM

EDWARD ALBEE’S THE LADY FROM DUBUQUE

Directed by David Esbjornson
February 14 – March 25, 2012

At a late night party, Sam and Jo entertain their friends with a round of Twenty Questions and another round of drinks. When an unexpected guest and her mysterious companion arrive, the question "Who are you?" gains a whole new and desperate meaning. Tony Award-winner Jane Alexander will play the title role.

RESIDENCY FIVE

HURT VILLAGE                              *** WORLD PREMIERE ***

By Katori Hall
Directed by Patricia McGregor
February 7 – March 18, 2012
Tickets on sale now

It’s the end of a long summer in Hurt Village, a housing project in Memphis, Tennessee, and a government Hope Grant means relocation for many of the project’s residents. A bold, gritty and devastating work, Hurt Village earned Katori Hall the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, given annually to an outstanding female playwright.

TITLE AND DEED                          *** U.S. PREMIERE ***

By Will Eno
Directed by Judy Hegarty Lovett
In association with Gare St. Lazare Players Ireland
May 8 – June 3, 2012

A nameless traveler from a far off place searches for connection and solace in an unknown country in this funny and sad meditation on mortality, loneliness, innocence, home, family, love, funerals, words, and the world. A provocative new work by Pulitzer Prize finalist and Horton Foote Prize winner Will Eno, whom The New York Times called “a Samuel Beckett for the Jon Stewart generation.”

A NEW PLAY BY KENNETH LONERGAN       *** WORLD PREMIERE ***

May 15 – June 24, 2012

Kenneth Lonergan, acclaimed playwright (This is Our Youth, Lobby Hero, The Starry Messenger) and Academy Award-nominated screenwriter (You Can Count on Me), shares a new work with Signature audiences.

About SIGNATURE THEATRE

Founded in 1991 by James Houghton, Signature Theatre exists to honor and celebrate the playwright.  Signature makes an extended commitment to a playwright’s body of work, and during this journey, the writer is engaged in every aspect of the creative process.  Signature is the first theatre company to devote an entire season to the work of a single playwright, including re-examinations of past writings as well as New York and world premieres. By championing in-depth explorations of a living playwright’s body of work, the Company delivers an intimate and immersive journey into the playwright’s singular vision. 

Signature has presented entire seasons of the work of Edward Albee, Lee Blessing, Horton Foote, Maria Irene Fornes, John Guare, Bill Irwin, Adrienne Kennedy, Tony Kushner, Romulus Linney, Charles Mee, Arthur Miller, the Negro Ensemble Company, Sam Shepard, Paula Vogel, August Wilson and Lanford Wilson.  Signature remains deeply committed to season-long residencies, and during the company’s tenth and fifteenth anniversaries, Signature introduced the Legacy Program.  The Legacy Program invites past Playwrights-in-Residence back to Signature through two series: the Signature Series, which presents “signature,” or more well-known works; and the Premiere Series, which presents New York and world premieres. 

In pursuit of its goal to build new audiences and remove the price barrier to those interested in experiencing live theatre, Signature has provided $20 tickets to all of its productions since 2005 through its groundbreaking Signature Ticket Initiative. Providing unprecedented access to world class theatre, this innovative program has served as a model for theatres and performing arts organizations across the country.  The program’s next phase, A Decade of Access, will continue for the next ten years, making all regularly-priced single tickets ($75) during the initial announced run available for $25.  Signature is committed to raising the funds needed for A Decade of Access and continues to pursue lead corporate sponsorship.  Generous seed support has been provided by Marma Foundation,The Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the New York City Council.

Signature, its productions and its resident writers have been recognized with a Pulitzer Prize, fourteen Lucille Lortel Awards, sixteen Obie Awards, six Drama Desk Awards and twenty-two AUDELCO Awards, among many other distinctions. The National Theatre Conference recognized the company as the 2003 Outstanding National Theatre of the Year. For more information on Signature please visit us on-line at signaturetheatre.org.

About SIGNATURE CENTER

Opening in January 2012, Signature Center is the new, permanent home of Signature Theatre.  Spanning an entire city block at 42nd Street between Dyer and 10th Avenue, the Frank Gehry-designed Signature Center will feature three intimate theatres, a studio theatre, rehearsal studio, and a public café and bookstore and will serve as both a theatre community hub and neighborhood destination.  Working hand-in-hand with Signature leadership and architect of record H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture LLC, Gehry’s design has been carefully calibrated to foster interaction among playwrights, artistic collaborators and the public.  Signature Center will allow the 20-year old Company, critically acclaimed for its programs that celebrate the playwright’s body of work, to expand and enhance its programming, introduce new initiatives, and build audiences. 

At Signature Center, the Company’s programming will include: Residency One, the continuation of Signature’s core program which provides audiences with an immersive exploration of the work of a singular playwright; Residency Five, a new artistic initiative which provides five-year residencies for multiple playwrights to support the creation and staging of new work; and the Legacy Program, which honors the lifetime achievement of artists who have previously been in residence at Signature with stagings of new plays  and signature works.  Signature Center will serve as the artistic home for as many as 9 playwrights at any one time, fostering a dynamic creative community where playwrights will engage directly with audiences and one another.

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