2015-2016

AW DIRECTORS

Rhonda Wilson

 

"Ruthless: The Musical Comedy"  by Marvin Laird and Joel Paley

by Marvin 

Judy Denmark, a bland housewife, is the mother of talented eight-year-old Tina, who declares, "I was born to entertain." At the suggestion that she should postpone her stage ambitions to be a normal child, she replies, "I've had a normal childhood. It's time to move on." Sylvia St. Croix, an overbearing and sleazy agent, encourages Tina to audition for the school play, Pippi in Tahiti, The Musical, feeding her thirst for stardom. Third-grade teacher and frustrated actress, Miss Myrna Thorn, directs Pippi. She casts an untalented girl, Louise Lerman, for the lead, making Tina the frustrated understudy. After "begging nicely and saying please,"

 

Tina wants the role so badly that she will do "anything" to get it.  Anything includes murdering the leading lady!

 

This aggressively outrageous musical hit garnered rave reviews during its long Off-Broadway run.

Deborah B. Dickey

 

"The Odd Couple"

by Neil Simon

Neil Simon’s classic comedy, The Odd Couple, navigates the hilarious mine-field where two friends, the fastidious Felix Ungar and the messy Oscar Madison, find themselves sharing living quarters after Felix’s wife throws him out. The apartment of divorced Madison is the setting where the suicidal Felix disrupts the household and sends his friend over the edge with his cleaning mania and quirky habits.  Throw in the regular Friday night poker gang and the chatty, and oh so British, Pigeon sisters from upstairs and the result is an evening of irresistible fun.

 

While many have tried to copy Neil Simon's success, those who have succeeded are indebted to the true “original”, Neil Simon, who perfected the form.  His plays reflect what his audiences recognize, that life is an absurdity, and we are reminded of it with every laugh his plays generate.

I'm a title

Robert Sturmer

 

"Dancing Lessons"

by Mark St. Germain

Two New York City apartment dwellers share the same building, both possess exceptional abilities and both desperately need to find a way to dance in public.  In all other aspects, the two characters in Dancing Lessons, a 90 minute play by Mark St. Germaine, have little in common.  Senga Quinn, a professional dancer is recovering from a terrible accident that threatens her career and her identity.

 

Ever Montgomery disturbs Senga’s isolating self-pity marathon when he pursues and entreats her to help him overcome a profound anxiety. Ever expects to receive a prestigious award for his academic accomplishments. He will be required to dance at this ceremony amongst peers and strangers, a terrifying predicament challenging his Asperger’s Syndrome sensibilities and social isolation.  As the play unfolds, both characters confront their long guarded fears and face life changing decisions.  Their curiosity for each other leads them to explore more than simple dancing lessons. 

 

Audience members can expect to be charmed and amused by this romantic story.  Thoughtful theater goers may find themselves pondering the prevailing social influences that divide the world into “normal” and “abnormal” people.  Compassionate individuals may identify with the plight of those who are not among the neuro-typical.  

 

 

Michael Griffith

 

"Shipwrecked"

by Donald Margulies

Louis de Rougemont was a man who claimed to have survived in the outback for 30 years after being shipwrecked. He eventually returned to society, where he told his story of heroics publicly and in print, and became a celebrity—until the story began to unravel. Various anthropologists and oceanographers began to find clues in his text that pointed to fabrication, and slowly his story fell apart until he was basically disgraced. 

 

The adventurous Louis de Rougemont invites you to hear his amazing story of bravery, survival and celebrity that left nineteenth-century England spellbound. Dare to be whisked away in a story of the high seas, populated by exotic islanders, flying wombats, giant sea turtles and a monstrous man-eating octopus. Shipwrecked examines how far we're willing to blur the line between fact and fiction in order to leave our mark on the world.

Shamrock McShane

 

"Cate on a Hot Tin Roof"

by Tennessee Williams 

The sensuality and excitement of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof first heated up Broadway in 1955 with its gothic American story of two brothers and their wives vying for the inheritance of their dying father, Big Daddy, amid a whirlwind of sexuality untethered in the person of Maggie the Cat and the burden of love repressed in the person of her husband Brick.

 

This Tennessee Williams classic is entertained audiences for decades and The Actors' Warehouse will present it with an all-Black cast as done on Broadway, directed by Debbie Allen and starring James Earl Jones.  

I'm a title

Steven H. Butler

 

"Single Black Female"

by Lisa B. Thompson

Single Black Female is a two-woman show with rapid-fire comic vignettes that explore the lives of thirty-something African American middle class women in urban America as they search for love, clothes and dignity in a world that fails to recognize them amongst a parade of stereotypical images. SBF 1, an English literature professor, and SBF 2, a corporate lawyer, keep each other balanced as they face their fears of rejection, hopes for romance and reminisce about black girlhood wounds.  

 

While embodying a variety of characters, the girlfriends discuss the absurdities of interracial dating, the lure of recreational shopping and the merits of college reunions for bolstering one's self-esteem. After reviewing their escapades in past relationships and confessing their own mounting anxieties about commitment and the possibility of motherhood, the pair realize their best chance at love may be found closer than they ever imagined.

 

These women are well educated, successfull, middle-class Black women, struggling to dodge negative stereotypes, and make a voice in American society. 

 

"[Single Black Female] is a socially significant and very entertaining two-woman show that manages to be simultaneously self-deprecating and proud." 

Anita Gates

New York Times

I'm a title

Joshua David McKinney

 

"The Last Five Years"

by Jason Robert Brown

Jason Robert Brown's Drama Desk winner The Last Five Years has been translated into a handful of languages and was named one of Time Magazine's 10 best shows of 2001.  Inspired by creator Jason Robert Brown’s own failed marriage to actress Theresa O’Neill, The Last Five Years was conceived and written as the composer traveled the country with the national tour of his earlier musical Parade.

 

An emotionally powerful and intimate musical about two New Yorkers in their twenties who fall in and out of love over the course of five years. The show's unconventional structure consists of Cathy, the woman, telling her story backwards while Jamie, the man, tells his story chronologically; the two characters only meet once, at their wedding in the middle of the show.  Join Actor's Warehouse for this beautiful journey of love and loss.

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