Blessing's New Play About "War Criminal" President Bush to Play Off-Broadway

News   Blessing's New Play About "War Criminal" President Bush to Play Off-Broadway When We Go Upon the Sea, Lee Blessing's drama that imagines George W. Bush as being charged with international war crimes, will surface at Off-Broadway's 59E59 Theaters this summer after its current run in Philadelphia.
When We Go Upon the Sea stars Conan McCarty and Peter Schmitz
When We Go Upon the Sea stars Conan McCarty and Peter Schmitz Photo by Seth Rozin

The InterAct Theatre Company production will move from Philly to Manhattan, where the work will play June 10-July 3 as part of the Americas Off-Broadway series, an InterAct spokesman confirmed. Many plays that received their world premiere at InterAct have gone on to separately productions around the country, but InterAct has never sent its own production to New York — until now. The company's mission favors plays about contemporary issues.

Paul Meshejian will once again direct the original cast, which features Conan McCarty as George W. Bush, Peter Schmitz as Piet and Kim Carson as Anna Lisa.

When We Go Upon the Sea was commissioned by InterAct in 2008 through its 20/20 New Play Commission program.

According to InterAct, "Set in a high-end hotel room at The Hague, When We Go Upon the Sea imagines former President George W. Bush on the eve of his trial for international war crimes. Tended to by an inscrutable Dutch butler and an alluring masseuse, the President embarks on a long night of drinking, joking, and ruminating, taking the audience through a deep exploration of how we regard our leaders — loving them, fearing them, unintentionally deifying them."

Blessing's plays include A Walk in the Woods, Cobb, Whores and Going to St. Ives, among many others.

The Philly run of When We Go Upon the Sea ends May 9.

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