(via Bruce Cohen)

2015-16 SEASON ANNOUNCEMENT 
 
INIMITABLE VOICES
FOUR PLAYS by
SHAKESPEARE and MAJOR AMERICAN and EUROPEAN AUTHORS 
 
New York City Players'
ISOLDE
Written and Directed by Richard Maxwell
Featuring 
Jim Fletcher, Brian Mendes, Tory Vazquez and Gary Wilmes
September 6
– 27
 
PERICLES
By William Shakespeare
Music Composed by Shaun Davey
Directed by Trevor Nunn
February 14
– March 27

A DOLL'S HOUSE
By Henrik Ibsen
Adapted by Thornton Wilder
May 4
– June 8
and
THE FATHER
By August Strindberg
A New Version in English by David Greig
May 4
– June 8
Performed In Rotating Repertory for the First Time by a Single Company
Directed by Arin Arbus
Featuring John Douglas Thompson

 



 

BROOKLYN – Theatre for a New Audience, Founding Artistic Director Jeffrey Horowitz, announces its 2015-16 season, Inimitable Voices, Four plays by Shakespeare and Major American and European authors, at Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place. 
 
        Mr. Horowitz says, "This will be our third season at Polonsky Shakespeare Center.  Richard Maxwell's haunting and humorous exploration of what is real; Shakespeare's story of redemption, reconciliation, and forgiveness; and Ibsen's and Strindberg's investigations of marriage and the battle of the sexes couldn't be more different.  But, what connects these authors is they all shape extraordinary theatrical worlds with singular language."
 

Isolde September 6 – 27

            The season opens with New York City Players' Isolde, a new American play about memory, identity, the ephemeral and infidelity, written and directed by Richard Maxwell, "one of the few truly original experimental theater auteurs" (Ben Brantley, The New York Times.).   Isolde was inspired by the legend of Tristan and Isolde. In the play, the marriage of Patrick and Isolde appears to be happy. Patrick is the owner of a successful construction company and Isolde is a star actress. But Isolde finds herself increasingly unable to remember her lines. When she decides to build her dream house, her husband is eager to help. But, the project is jeopardized by Massimo, an award-winning architect whom Isolde hires.
 
        In its 2014, U.S. Premiere at Abrons Arts Center, Isolde sold out, but could only play nine performances and was acclaimed — "Graphic and elegant" (Hilton Als, The New Yorker); "Five Stars…Works at an incredible, precise pitch" (Helen Shaw, Time Out).  Featuring the ensemble of New York City Players veterans, Jim Fletcher, Brian Mendes, Tory Vazquez, and Gary Wilmes, Isolde moves to Theatre for a New Audience and plays September 6 through 27.   

Pericles February 14 – March 27

            Trevor Nunn's most recent production in New York was 2013 — Samuel Beckett's All That Fall. A four-time Tony and Olivier Award-winner and former Artistic Director, Royal Shakespeare Company and Royal National Theatre, he's "as celebrated for his staging of blockbuster musicals ( Cats, Les Miserables) as for his revitalizing of classic texts" (Ben Brantley, The New York Times).

            As part of Theatre for a New Audience's season-long celebration of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death (April 23, 2016), Mr. Nunn stages Pericles, one of Shakespeare's late plays. Pericles combines a fantastic adventure (a hero wandering, Odysseus-like, the world of the Aegean) with a story of a miracle. Live music will help convey the mystery and magic of the play.  The Irish artist Shaun Davey (with whom Trevor Nunn worked in his film of Twelfth Night) will compose. This is the first time in his career that Trevor Nunn will have directed Pericles and staged Shakespeare with a U.S. company.    Pericles runs February 14 through March 27.

        This production is made possible, in part, by support from The Thompson Family Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and Shakespeare for a New Generation, a national initiative sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest. Endowment funds for the production are provided by The Howard Gilman Foundation Fund for Classic Drama.
 

A Doll's House and The Father Marriage in rotating repertory May 4 – June 8

         Arin Arbus, associate artistic director, Theatre for A New Audience, has directed six productions of Shakespeare for the company, including acclaimed stagings of Othello and Macbeth featuring John Douglas Thompson.  For the first time for Theatre for A New Audience, she will direct two provocative contemporary classics about marriage in rotating repertory May 4 through June 8 by a single company — A Doll's House, in an adaptation by Thornton Wilder not seen in New York since its Broadway premiere in 1937, and August Strindberg's The Father in a new version in English by David Greig.  This is the first time the two plays will be performed in rotating repertory.  In 2012, the Belgrade Theatre in the UK produced Nora (Bergman's 90-minute adaptation of A Doll's House) and The Father; they were programmed consecutively, but not in repertory.
 
         John Douglas Thompson returns to Theatre for a New Audience, following his award-winning performance in the 2014 production of Tamburlaine the Great, to play Torvald in A Doll’s House and the Captain in The Father.
 
        Strindberg wrote The Father as a direct rebuttal to Ibsen's A Doll's House, fulminating against Ibsen's tale of a woman bravely escaping a stifling bourgeois marriage. Lean and fresh translations will support this sense of enduring contemporaneity.
 
        Thornton Wilder's sparkling American version of A Doll's House – a forgotten gem in his oeuvre – has not been seen in New York since its Broadway premiere in 1937. And a remarkable new version of The Father, commissioned by Theatre for A New Audience, from acclaimed Scottish playwright David Greig ( The Events last season at New York Theatre Workshop and whose 2010 translation of Strindberg's Creditors played at BAM), is cut from the same lucid and immediate cloth. 
 
         A Doll's House is sponsored by Deloitte.
        Endowment funds for the productions of A Doll's House and The Father are provided by The Howard Gilman Foundation Fund for Classic Drama.
 
         Public support for Theatre for a New Audience's Capital Campaign was provided by the City of New York through the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York City Council, and the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President. Leadership private support for Polonsky Shakespeare Center and Theatre for a New Audience's endowed programs has been provided by a naming gift from The Polonsky Foundation. Additional major support has been provided by Cleary, Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, The Irving Harris Foundation, Theodore C. Rogers, and the SHS Foundation. Major endowment gi
fts have been provided by the Elayne P. Bernstein Education Fund and The Howard Gilman Foundation.
 
        Principal support for Theatre for a New Audience's season and programs is provided by Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Booth Ferris Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The SHS Foundation, The Thompson Family Foundation, and The Winston Foundation.
 
        Theatre for a New Audience's season and programs are also made possible, in part, with public funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities; the National Endowment for the Arts; Shakespeare for a New Generation, a national initiative sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; and from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
 

Box Office

         Subscriptions for Theatre for a New Audience's 2015-2016 Season include a Four-Play Package for $196, a Three-Play Package for $156, and a Flex Pass Package for $216. Subscriptions may be purchased at www.tfana.org/season or by calling (212) 229-2819, ext. 10.
 
            New Deal tickets for ages 30 and under or full-time students of any age are priced at $20 each and can be purchased when single tickets go on sale for each production. Theatre for a New Audience's New Deal Ticket Program is supported by Macy's.
 
Background
 
        Founded in 1979 by Jeffrey Horowitz, Theatre for a New Audience is a modern classic theatre. It produces Shakespeare alongside other major authors from the world repertoire, such as Harley Granville Barker, Edward Bond, Adrienne Kennedy, Wallace Shawn, and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins. Theatre for a New Audience has played Off- and on Broadway and toured nationally and internationally.
 
            In 2001, Theatre for a New Audience became the first American theatre invited to bring a production of Shakespeare to the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), Stratford-upon-Avon. Cymbeline, directed by Bartlett Sher, premiered at the RSC; in 2007, Theatre for a New Audience was invited to return to the RSC with The Merchant of Venice directed by Darko Tresnjak starring F. Murray Abraham. In 2011, Mr. Abraham reprised his role as Shylock for a national tour.
 
        After 34 years of being itinerant and playing mostly in Manhattan, Theatre for a New Audience moved to Brooklyn and opened its first permanent home, Polonsky Shakespeare Center, in October 2013.  Built by The City of New York in partnership with Theatre for a New Audience and located in the Brooklyn Cultural District, Polonsky Shakespeare Center was designed by Hugh Hardy and H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture with theatre consultants Akustiks, Milton Glaser, Jean-Guy Lecat, and Theatre Projects. Housed inside the building are the Samuel H. Scripps Mainstage (299 seats) — the first stage built for Shakespeare and classical drama in New York City since Lincoln Center's 1965 Vivian Beaumont — and the Theodore C. Rogers Studio (50 seats). 
 
            The Theatre's productions have been honored with Tony, Obie, Drama Desk, Drama League, Callaway, Lortel and Audelco awards and nominations and reach an audience diverse in age, economics and cultural background. 
 
            The Theatre created and runs the largest in-depth program in the New York City Public Schools to introduce students to Shakespeare, and has served more than 126,000 students since the program began in 1984.  The Theatre's economically accessible ticket program includes one of the lowest reserved ticket prices for youth in the city: $20 for any show, any time for those 30 years old and under or for full-time students of any age. 

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