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Thursday, 12 January 2012 14:45

Roundabout Announces Roundabout Underground Reading Series

Roundabout Theatre Company



Roundabout Underground Reading Series
In celebration of five critically-acclaimed seasons of Roundabout Underground productions. 

February 6 -10 at 7PM
At the Black Box Theatre in the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre

Roundabout Theatre Company (Artistic Director, Todd Haimes) announces the first Roundabout Underground Reading Series. The series will celebrate five critically-acclaimed seasons of Roundabout Underground productions. Roundabout Underground Reading Series is a five night event that will include a nightly reading of a new play written and directed by an emerging artist.

{module ad_left_body}The plays featured in the series include Jordan Seavey’s The Funny Pain, directed by May Adrales; Laura Jacqmin’s Two Lakes, Two Rivers, directed by Laura Savia; Joshua Elias Harmon’s Bad Jews, directed by Sheryl Kaller; Emily Schwend’s Route One Off, directed by Giovanna Sardelli; Kirsten Guenther and Joy Son’s Little Miss Fix-It, directed by Eli Gonda.

Roundabout Underground is an initiative launched in 2007 to introduce and cultivate artists in Roundabout’s 62-seat Black Box Theatre, at the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre (111 West 46th Street, NYC, NY, 10036).  Prior productions include the acclaimed world premieres of Stephen Karam’s Speech & Debate (2007), Steven Levenson’s The Language of Trees (2008), Adam Gwon’s Ordinary Days (2009), Kim Rosenstock’s Tigers Be Still (2010), David West Read’s The Dream of the Burning Boy (2011) and Andrew Hinderaker’s Suicide, Incorporated (2011).


“When we launched Roundabout Underground with Speech & Debate, we were thrilled with the audience and industry response. It is so gratifying now to celebrate five successful seasons and the relationships we’ve developed with six incredibly talented young playwrights.  I look forward to seeing how far they go after getting their start here. We’re doing this reading series both as a celebration of all of the great work that has come through our Black Box Theatre since 2007 and as an opportunity to introduce even more new voices. There are so many gifted writers out there, and my hope is that Roundabout Underground can continue to have a significant impact by bringing them to the attention of theater audiences.”

Major support for Roundabout Underground provided by members of Roundabout Leaders for New Works including, Alec Baldwin, Linda L. D’Onofrio, Jodi Glucksman, Sylvia Golden, Caryn and James Magid, the Laura Pels International Foundation for Theatre, Laura S. Rodgers, the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, Yolanda R. Turocy, Deborah and Thomas Wallace, and Xerox Foundation. 

The Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre reflects Roundabout’s commitment to produce new works by established and emerging writers as well as revivals of classic plays. This state-of-the-art off-Broadway theatre and education complex is made possible by a major gift from The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. The Trust was created in 1986 by Harold Steinberg to promote and advance American Theatre as a vital part of our culture by supporting playwrights, encouraging the development and production of new work, and providing financial assistance to theatre companies across the country. Since its inception, the Trust has awarded over $45 million to more than 100 not-for-profit theatre organizations.

Roundabout Underground is an initiative to showcase new plays that will either allow an experienced director to go back to his/her creative roots or give a debut production to an emerging writer or director.    Robyn Goodman (Artistic Consultant to the Roundabout), who has significant artistic development experience, produces the initiative that continues to be a creative breeding ground for nurturing new talent.

The 62-seat Black Box Theatre, below the Laura Pels Theatre in the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre, allows Roundabout to take artistic risks that are better suited for a more intimate space. 


There will be one reading each night at 7pm from February 6 -10, in the Black Box Theatre in the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre (111 W46th St.).


Sign up to be part of Roundabout’s Email Club and members will be notified first about ticket availability.

The Funny Pain

Monday, February 6th, 2012 at 7pm

By Jordan Seavey; Directed by May Adrales

They don't call Mary Rochelle Douleur, “Roach” for nothing -- she’s practically indestructible.  With a disease that makes her unable to feel physical pain, Roach can fall down stairs, stick her fingers in electrical sockets, scratch her eyeballs and still look up, smiling.   But when she and her older sister Mary May become rival stand-up comediennes, they learn just how fine the line is between laughing and crying.

JORDAN SEAVEY (Playwright) is Co-Artistic Director of theatre company CollaborationTown (CTown), a member of the 2009 Emerging Writer’s Group at The Public Theater, and a Usual Suspect at the New York Theatre Workshop.  His plays include Listening for Our Murderer, Who’s Afraid of George C. Wolfe?, The Funny Pain, The Truth Will Out, Children At Play, 6969 and  This is a Newspaper.  Plays co-created with CTown include The Deepest Play Ever; The Catharsis of Pathos (text by Geoffrey Decas O’Donnell), The Momentum, The Play About My Dad (text by Book Killebrew), Let’s Go, Townville, They’re Just Like Us (text by Boo Killebrew), The Astronomer’s Triangle and The Trading Floor.  His work has been developed with The Public Theater, NYTW, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, The Old Vic (UK), Lark Play Development Center, Oslo Internasjanole Teater (Norway), Robert Wilson's Watermill Center, 59E59 Theaters, IRT Theater, Orlando Shakespeare, Emerging American Festival/Huntington Theatre Company, hotINK Festival, New York International Fringe Festival, The MacDowell Colony, The Orchard Project, SPACE at Ryder Farm, Dartmouth College, NYSAF/Vassar, Edward F. Albee Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council.  B.F.A., Theatre Studies, Boston University.

May Adrales (Director) directed the world premieres of Edith Can Shoot Things And Hit Them at Actors Theater of Louisville; Mary at The Goodman Theatre; A Hard Wall at High Speed by Ashlin Halfnight at Astoria Performing Arts Center and Our Lot by David Hancock and Kristin Newbom at Clubbed Thumb.  She also recently directed Yellowman at Milwaukee Repertory Theater.  She has directed work at The Public Theater, Second Stage Theatre, New York Theater Workshop, Williamstown Theater Festival, Partial Comfort Productions and Long Wharf Theatre.  Upcoming: In This House by Sarah Schlensinger, Mike Reid and Jonathan Bernstein.   Awards: TCG New Generations grant; Paul Green Directing Award; Bill Foeller Fellowship at WTF; SSDC Denham Award; Van Lier Fellowship; Drama League Directing Fellow; New York Theater Workshop Fellow; SoHo Rep Directors Lab and Women's Project Directors Lab.  She served as Director of On Site Programming at the Lark Play Development Center  (2008-2010) and Artistic Associate at The Public Theater. (2006-2008). MFA, Yale School of Drama.

Two Lakes, Two Rivers

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 at 7pm

By Laura Jacqmin; Directed by Laura Savia

When Peter becomes the twelfth boy to drown in a Midwestern college town’s two lakes and two rivers, his friends search for a truth behind his death. Was it an accident? Suicide? Murder? Or something even stranger? A gripping tale of grief and how we choose to remember our past.

Laura Jacqmin (Playwright) was the winner of the 2008 Wasserstein Prize, a $25,000 award to recognize an emerging female playwright. Her plays include Look, We Are Breathing (Sundance Theatre Lab), Two Lakes, Two Rivers (commissioned by the Goodman Theatre, and workshopped through the Royal Court Theatre’s 2011 International Residency) and Ski Dubai (Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s First Look Repertory of New Work). Her short play Hero Dad will premiere in the 2012 Humana Festival of New Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville. Her work has been produced and developed by the Atlantic Theater, Vineyard Theatre, Cape Cod Theatre Project, Ars Nova, Second Stage, MacDowell Colony, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, and more. Jacqmin was a member of the inaugural 2010-2011 Playwrights’ Unit at the Goodman Theatre. She is currently working on commissions from South Coast Rep, Goodman Theatre, Arden Theater Company, InterAct Theatre, Carthage College, Victory Gardens Theater/NNPN, and Ensemble Studio Theatre/Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Science & Technology Project. BA Yale University; MFA Ohio University.

Laura Savia (Director) directing credits include The Color of Justice (TheatreworksUSA), The Urban Dictionary Plays, The Wii Plays, and I Am Frightened of My Body, (Ars Nova), Pinter's The Lover (Drama League), The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (NYU/Strasberg), and Ski Dubai (At Play), and the 24 Hour Plays, as well as readings and workshops for The Public Theater, Roundabout Theatre Company, Atlantic Theater Company, 2econd Stage, Naked Angels, and Ma-Yi Theater Company, among others.  Assistant directing includes productions with Michael Mayer, Diane Paulus, Neil Pepe and Daniel Sullivan, most recently the Broadway production of The Merchant of Venice starring Al Pacino.  Laura was the Director of the Workshop at Williamstown Theatre Festival in 2011.  She spent five seasons on Atlantic Theater Company's staff, including two as Literary Associate.  Co-conceiver and director of The Living Newspaper, which has performed at Joe’s Pub, Le Poisson Rouge, and Club Oberon. 2009 Drama League Directing Fellow. Alumna of Northwestern University.

Bad Jews

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012 at 7pm

By Joshua Elias Harmon; Directed by Sheryl Kaller

Daphna Feygenbaum wants one thing: the religious emblem her recently deceased grandfather, a holocaust survivor, wore throughout his life. But her cousin Liam wants it too. And just as badly. This bitingly funny portrait of an American family explores what we lose when someone dies, what we inherit, what we discard, what remains, and what is gone forever.

Joshua Elias Harmon (Playwright) is the author of A Boy Named Alice, Bad Jews, Love in the Time of Channukah, and an adaptation of Emile Zola's novel Therese Raquin. His work has been produced and developed by Hangar Theatre, Ars Nova, The Lark, Prospect Theater Company, Future Tenant and Actor's Express, where he was the 2010-2011 National New Play Network's Playwright-in-Residence. Other honors include fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Atlantic Center for the Arts, and Eudora Welty Foundation, the Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for Comic Playwriting (2nd Place) and a Kennedy Center fellowship at the O'Neill Playwrights Conference. He has taught playwriting at Actor's Express, Horizon Theatre and Carnegie Mellon. Education: Northwestern (BA), Carnegie Mellon (MFA).

Sheryl Kaller (Director) received a Tony Award Nomination for Best Director for the critically acclaimed Broadway production of Next Fall by Geoffrey Nauffts. She has directed at many theaters including Naked Angels, Primary Stages, the New Group, A.C.T., the Geffen Playhouse, Philadelphia Theater Company, the York, Rubicon and American Music Theater Project. She has developed many new plays with writers including Christopher Durang, Peter Melnick, Regina Taylor, Dick Beebe, Daniel Beaty, Alan Menken and Geoffrey Nauffts.

Route One Off

Thursday, February 9th, 2012 at 7pm

By Emily Schwend; Directed by Giovanna Sardelli

Hector and Lee spend their days hanging out in a motel parking lot off Route One, killing time and smoking cigarettes while they wait for anyone to rent a room. But one day the arrival of an unstable A/C repairman shakes up their easy routine and sets into motion an unlikely series of events that changes their friendship forever.

Emily Schwend (Playwright) attended The Juilliard School and NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.  Her plays include Carthage, South of Settling, and Route One Off.  In New York, her work has been developed or produced by Page 73, the Juilliard School, Partial Comfort Productions, Ars Nova, the Stella Adler Studio Acting School, and Christine Jones' Theatre for One booth. Regionally, her plays have been developed at the O’Neill Playwrights Conference, ACT Theater in Seattle, Marin Theatre Company in California, the Source Festival in DC, and the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta.  Emily is a two-time Lecomte du Nouy Prize winner, the 2009 David Calicchio Emerging American Playwrights Prize winner, the 2011 ACT Theater New Play Award, a 2010 Steinberg New Play Award finalist, and a 2009-2010 Interstate 73 member. In the spring of 2012, her play South of Settling will be produced in the Steppenwolf Garage as part of the Next Up Repertory. Emily was born in Texas, raised all over the world, and is now based in Brooklyn.

Giovanna Sardelli (Director) directed the world premiere of Dead Accounts by Theresa Rebeck which is currently running at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park; Somewhere by Matthew Lopez and the West Coast premiere of his play The Whipping Man (NAACP nomination Best Director), both at The Old Globe Theatre; world premieres of Rajiv Joseph’s plays The North Pool, TheatreWorks; and Animals Out of Paper (Joe A.. Callaway Award for Outstanding Director) and All This Intimacy,  both at Second Stage Theatre; The Leopard and The Fox, AlterEgo Theatre Company; and Huck & Holden, Cherry Lane Theatre. New York premiere of Lynn Rosen’s Apple Cove, Women’s Project; world premieres of James McLindon’s Salvation, Hudson Stage Company; Christopher Wall’s Dreams of the Washer King, Playwrights Realm; Lila Rose Kaplan’s Wildflower, Second Stage Theatre; Zoe Kazan’s Absalom, Actors Theatre of Louisville Humana Festival; and Adriana Sevan’s Taking Flight, Center Theatre Group and others. Ms. Sardelli has developed plays with The Lark, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Sundance, The Playwrights’ Center and the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center among others. She spent two seasons as Director of the Shakespeare Sedona Institute and two seasons as the Artistic Director of Studio Tisch. Ms. Sardelli received her MFA in acting from NYU, and is also a graduate of their Director’s Lab. She is on the faculty of the Graduate Acting and Dance Programs at NYU.

Little Miss Fix-It

Friday, February 10th at 7pm

Book and Lyrics by Kirsten Guenther; Music by Joy Son; Directed by Eli Gonda

“Little Miss Fix-It” is Nan, a gloriously precocious and imaginative 11-year-old free spirit who drinks black coffee for breakfast and tries to bend spoons with her mind. The one thing Nan fears most is disorder. As she tries to save her parents’ marriage and the problems of everyone around her, Nan embarks on a hilarious and heartwarming journey, discovering that you can't always control what happens in life but that sometimes great things happen when you let go, trust your instincts, and take a step without knowing where you're going to land.

Kirsten Guenther (Book and Lyrics) appeared on the cover of Insight for Playwrights Magazine, and was named one of “50 writers to watch” by The Dramatist Magazine. She was recently featured as a guest expert on NBC’s The Apprentice alongside her musical, Little Miss Fix-It (music by Joy Son)which was performed on Broadway’s Shubert Theatre. She wrote the book for Mrs. Sharp (music and lyrics by Ryan Scott Oliver), which won the 2008 Richard Rodgers Award (workshopped at Playwrights Horizons starring Jane Krakowski, directed by Michael Greif ). Other current projects include book for Benny and Joon (with Mindi Dickstein and Nolan Gasser), Measure of Success (with Julian Fleisher); and The Perfect Mate (with Dan Lipton and David Rossmer). Out of My Head (with Ryan Scott Oliver) opened this summer in Los Angeles at the Pico Playhouse. Kirsten’s lyrics have been heard on Broadway’s Carols for a Cure album as well as the hit YouTube series The Battery’s Down (Ghost Light Records) and in TADA’s off-Broadway production Everything About A Family (Almost). She has written tributes (with Steven Jamail) for Queen Latifah (the Palace Theater) and Cyndi Lauper (Marriott Marquis). Previously, Kirsten wrote in Paris for USA Today and authored the Parisian weekly dating column, "The Sexy Expat." Kirsten is the recipient of a Richard Rodgers Award, Lincoln Center Honorarium, Dramatist Guild Fellowship, Marge Goldwater Scholarship, The Looking Glass “Audience Choice Award” for best production, and was a Disney/ASCAP workshop participant. Kirsten has been a guest speaker at Harvard, Yale and NYU. She proudly sits on the Advisory Board of Rosie’s Theater Kids, and is a member of ASCAP. Kirsten is represented at The Gersh Agency. BFA Acting, USC; MFA Musical Theatre Writing, NYU (Tisch).  

Joy Son (Music). Ms. Son is the recipient of the Jerry Harrington Award (with Steve Routman) and the Shelley Pinz Prize from the BMI Foundation; she was also a Jerry Bock Award nominee. Ms. Son’s songs have been heard in a variety of notable venues, including Lincoln Center, York Theater, Goodspeed Opera, Laurie Beechman, Barrington Stage (showcased by William Finn), the Manhattan Theatre Club, Birdland, Duplex, Golden Fleece Ltd. Composers’ Chamber Theatre, Raw Impressions, Dixon Place, Triad, Zipper, ArsNova, Donnell Library Songbook Series, TADA! Youth Theatre, and in numerous New York City cabarets and theaters. Little Miss Fix-It (book and lyrics by Kirsten Guenther) received a concert reading at CAP 21, also was the subject of a workshop with Jerry Mitchell at Emerson College and The Fisher King (book and lyrics by Steve Routman) received a master class with Stephen Schwartz presented by BMI Lehman Engel Musical Workshop. Little Miss Fix-It was featured in NBC’s popular TV show “The Apprentice.” Ms. Son’s compositions for other musicals and revues include A Supper At Elsinore (book and lyrics by Thomas Gualtieri), Off-Beat (book and lyrics by Amanda Yesnowitz), Hee-Haw (written by Daniel Levin), Everything About a Family (Almost), Everything About a Day, The 60-Second Novelist and many more. She also composed the music for a play, Ben and Emma (written by Lynn Logoff). Ms.Son also performed as a concert pianist with the prestigious Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. Most recently, Ms. Son wrote a Korean new musical Lovers In Paris (book and lyrics by Heejoon Lee), which was based on the same titled hit TV drama series throughout Asia. After its critically acclaimed recent workshop performance in 2011, the show is now scheduled to open in April of 2012 in Seoul, receive a national tour then head to Japan. Ms. Son’s published songs include: "Happy" (The BMI Songbook Vol.1, 2009, lyrics by Jill Abramovitz), “Impressions of Nan” and “Totally Unorganized” from Little Miss Fix-It (lyrics by Kirsten Guenther) through New Musical Theatre.

Ms. Son is proudly affiliated with Broadcast Music International, Inc. and she is a member of BMI Lehman Engel Musical Workshop, the Dramatists Guild and The Authors League of America. Ms. Son holds a B.M. in Composition from Ewha Womans University, a M.A. in Composition from NYU Steinhardt and a M.F.A. in Musical Theatre Writing from NYU Tisch.

ELI GONDA (Director). Recent stage credits include: The 8 Minute Musicals (TBG Theatre), The Crow Mill by Andrew Unterberg (The Cherry Pit), The FIFA International World Congress- Opening Ceremony (The Atlantis, Bahamas), Annie Hendy’s The Catholic Girl’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity (The Pico Playhouse and Ojai Playwrights), The Best of the 24 hr Plays (NYC Fringe, Signature Theatre, and at the William Inge Center). Eli recently made his directorial film debut with Danny Strong’s The Rooster, starring Danny Masterson, Carla Gallo, and Danny Strong. His other film credits include Producing Nanette Burstein’s award winning documentary American Teen (Sundance Film Festival/Paramount Pictures). As an Associate/Resident Director, Eli worked with David Leveaux on the Broadway productions of: Cyrano de Bergerac, The Glass Menagerie,  Fiddler on the Roof, Nine and the West End production/subsequent European tour of the multimedia musical, Sinatra, Live at the Palladium. He also worked alongside Jack O’Brien on the Broadway productions of Henry IV, Nora Ephron’s Imaginary Friends and the Royal National Theatre’s production of John Guarre’s His Girl Friday. He is a recipient of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers’ Shepard and Mildred Traube Fellowship as well as The Mitsy Daily Award in Music, from Georgetown University.Eli is currently working with Joey McIntyre on his upcoming one-man show and the feature film adaptation of The Catholic Girl’s Guide to Losing Her Virginity.

Roundabout Theatre Company currently produces at four theatres each of which is designed specifically to enhance the needs of the Roundabout's mission.  Off-Broadway, the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre, which houses the Laura Pels Theatre and Black Box Theatre, with its simple sophisticated design is perfectly suited to showcasing new plays. The grandeur of its Broadway home on 42nd Street, American Airlines Theatre, sets the ideal stage for the classics.  Roundabout's Studio 54 provides an exciting and intimate Broadway venue for its musical and special event productions.  The Stephen Sondheim Theatre offers a state of the art LEED certified Broadway theatre in which to stage major large scale musical revivals. Together these distinctive homes serve to enhance the work on each of its stages.

American Airlines is the official airline of Roundabout Theatre Company. Roundabout productions are made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. 

Roundabout Theatre Company’s 2011-2012 season features Athol Fugard’s The Road To Mecca starring Rosemary Harris, Carla Gugino & Jim Dale, directed by Gordon Edelstein; John Osborne’s Look Back in Anger, directed by Sam Gold; Marc Camoletti’s Don’t Dress For Dinner adapted by Robin Hawdon, directed by John Tillinger; Simon Gray’s The Common Pursuit,directed by Moisés Kaufman; Mary Chase’s Harvey starring Jim Parsons, Jessica Hecht & Charles Kimbrough, directed by Scott Ellis. Roundabout’s Tony Award winning production of Anything Goes starring Sutton Foster & Joel Grey, directed & choreographed by Kathleen Marshall, is currently playing at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre. The 2011 Tony® Award winning Anything Goeswill set sail on a National Tour at Cleveland’s Playhouse Square in October 2012.  Following its opening in Cleveland, Anything Goes will cruise into more than 25 other cities during the 2012/2013 season.
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