When last we heard from Off-Broadway's American Place Theatre, they were mounting a commercial run of the critical hit, Stonewall Jackson's House. Now they're readying a new season, which features two shows that were originally supposed to be mounted in `96-97: Fly and BAFO.
The 1997-98 American Place season is the company's 35th, and the line up looks like this:
Fly (Prev Oct. 22, opens Nov. 2, open run)
Artistic director Wynn Handman directs a comedy by and starring Joseph Edward, dubbed "a hip, hilarious flight through the plight of a black American man." Also in the show are Arthur French (Mulebone, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom), and Amy-Monique Waddell (Time And The Wind, the film Booty Call). Edward appeared Off-Broadway in The Jungle Book (New Victory Theatre) and Do Lord Remember Me.
Queens Theatre In The Park will travel to the American Place with Coming Through, (Prev. Jan. 15, 1998), to be followed by BAFO (Feb. 4). Tom Strelich's satire (the title acronym stands for "Best And Final Offer") tells of corporate downsizing and the white male rage that ensues. Four veteran employees of a military contractor prepare to present a new government project. The problem: Who needs weapons when there's no threat?
BAFO, was the first play commissioned by CA's South Coast Repertory for members of its acting company. The show opened there Jan. 24. Strelich (pronounced stre'-litch), who began writing plays "on a dare," has written Dog Logic, Water Memory, Embarcadero Fugue and Neon Psalms, the latter of which premiered at San Francisco's Magic Theatre. Dog Logic, which played Off-Broadway, world premiered at South Coast Rep in 1988.
April 4 will bring Aasif Mandvi's Sakina's Restaurant, about an Indian immigrant waiter discovering America through the eyes of a South Asian family. As an actor, Mandvi appeared as the Delivery Boy in Death Defying Acts' one-act, Central Park West, Off-Broadway.
For tickets ($35) and information on productions at the American Place Theatre on West 46th St., call (212) 239-6200.
--By David Lefkowitz