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Pictured: Brett Neveu
A Red Orchid Theatre has announced the line-up, directors, and partial cast and creatives for their 25th anniversary season, which includes EVENING AT THE TALK HO– USE by Wallace Shawn, directed by Ensemble Member Shade Murray, and featuring Ensemble Members Lance Baker, Kirsten Fitzgerald, and Natalie West.
The season continues with the world premiere of TRAITOR, an adaption of Ibsen’s ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE by Brett Neveu, directed by Ensemble Member Michael Shannon, and featuring Ensemble Members Dado, Larry Grimm, Danny McCarthy, Guy Van Swearingen and Natalie West, with lighting designed by Ensemble Member Mike Durst; and 33 TO NOTHING by Grant Varjas, featuring Ensemble Member Steve Haggard. In summer 2018 A Red Orchid will also present a bonus presentation of VICTIMS OF DUTY by Eugene Ionesco, directed by Shira Piven, and featuring original cast members Michael Shannon and Guy Van Swearingen.
Additionally, A Red Orchid’s 2013 production of SIMPATICO will open the season at the McCarter Center in Princeton, New Jersey. SIMPATICO will feature the original cast and creative team, directed by Dado and featuring Kristin Ellis, Jennifer Engstrom, Mierka Girten, Michael Shannon, Guy Van Swearingen and Doug Vickers, with designs by Grant Sabin, Christine Pascual, Mike Durst, Joe Court and stage manager by Christa van Baale.
“Our 25th anniversary season is full of landmark events for A Red Orchid,” comments Artistic Director Kirsten Fitzgerald. “We will see our first collaboration with an iconic playwright, our tenth world premiere with an ensemble member playwright, and a second collaboration with a local playwright. Ensemble is at the heart of everything we do, and we’re thrilled to present a 25th anniversary season packed with ensemble members both onstage and off. With an eye toward reaching out we are also over-the-moon to collaborate with Emily Mann and Debbie Bisno to bring A Red Orchid to the McCarter Center, as well as with Ike Holter, Tony Santiago and The Roustabouts in incubating new work right here at home.”
A Red Orchid Theatre’s 2017-2018 Season (from the press release):
EVENING AT THE TALK HO– USE
by Wallace Shawn
Directed by Ensemble Member Shade Murray
Featuring Ensemble Members Lance Baker, Kirsten Fitzgerald, and Natalie West
October 5 – November 19, 2017
Remember when you felt you could do anything when there was still nothing to fear? EVENING AT THE TALK HO– USE is a reunion at your favorite club, where old friends cozy up, raise a glass and remember gentler times when culture had value and terror wasn’t the every day. This ultra-dark comedy invites us all to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the opening night of Robert’s under-appreciated masterpiece, Midnight in a Clearing with Moon and Stars. Please come. We need each other.
an adaption of Ibsen’s AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE
by Brett Neveu
Directed by Ensemble Member Michael Shannon
Featuring Ensemble Members Dado, Larry Grimm, Danny McCarthy, Guy Van Swearingen and Natalie West, with lighting designed by ensemble member Mike Durst
January 11 – February 25, 2018
In this world premiere adaptation of Heinrich Ibsen’s AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE, a small, North Chicago suburb finds the town’s restart button with an investment in a newly opened charter school. After issues with the school grounds are discovered by its head of sciences, Dr. Stock, a quest to inform and correct is met with support. But suspicion and rancor mount as truths bubble to the surface. A play that mirrors our vital, absurd and often hilarious political times.
33 TO NOTHING
by Grant Varjas
Featuring Ensemble Member Steve Haggard
April 12 – May 27, 2018
Taking place during a real-time band practice, 33 TO NOTHING is a play that rocks hard and breaks hearts. Feeling the incessant call of adulthood, individuals begin to question their role in the ensemble. Ultimately begging the question: to break up or to build stronger? An anthem of forgiveness, loyalty, and resilience when your world is being torn by the seams.
VICTIMS OF DUTY
by Eugene Ionesco
Directed by Shira Piven
Featuring original cast members Michael Shannon and Guy Van Swearingen
Much of the original 1995 team come together to revisit Ionesco’s absurd masterpiece. Choubert, the archetypal bourgeois everyman, and his wife Madeleine are spending a quiet evening at home when the Detective arrives to enlist their help in finding the previous tenant. A roller-coaster ride of high comedy and horrific tragedy as Choubert examines his past present and future in a quest to find out where Mallot could be hiding.
Also in 2017 A Red Orchid’s INCUBATOR hosts The Roustabouts inaugural production/pop-up. Founded by Ike Holter and Tony Santiago, The Roustabouts are responsible for Ike Holter’s STAY LIT at Oracle and Steppenwolf, and the Winehouse concert at Oracle. They will produce a new play by Ike Holter as part of A Red Orchid’s INCUBATOR series. Cast, production team and plot information are under wraps, but the project will premiere before the end of the year.
For more information on A RED ORCHID’s 17/18 season visit aredorchidtheatre.org.