The Play Company, the not-for-profit theatre founded in 1998 by Kate Loewald, Jack Temchin and the late Mike Ockrent, continues its script-in hand New Work/New World series Oct. 16-20 with American playwright Victor Lodato's The Bread of Winter.
Tickets to the plays in the series are $5, with 7:30 PM performances at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre — the troupe's home for the season — at Broadway and 76th Street in Manhattan. The company develops and produces new American plays alongside new work from other countries and cultures. Its mission is to "create an international theatre for New York City, celebrating the rich variety of new writing from around the world." Beyond the readings, a new full staging is planned for early 2002, along with other projects.
The Bread of Winter is directed by Loy Arcenas. In it, "Libby is fired as housekeeper for a family with two young sons," and "she and the boys struggle to find love in a world where tenderness can be dangerous."
Lodato is a playwright and an actor. He has been a recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Robert Chesley Foundation, Art Matters, The Puffin Foundation, The Arizona Commission on the Arts, as well as a New Forms Grant (Rockefeller Foundation/NEA). In 1999, he was the Princess Grace Playwriting Fellow at New Dramatists. Recently, his short play Mega World Destroyer was staged at the Guthrie Theater and his play, A Book of Harsh Geometry, was seen at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. Other works have been produced at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, a.k.a. Theatre in Tucson (where he was resident playwright, 1993-95), and Institute for Studies in the Arts. He received workshops and readings at Magic Theatre, A.S.K. Theatre projects, MCC Theatre, TheatreFest, New Dramatists, and Playwrights Theatre of NJ. His writing has been published in North American Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Southern Review, and Northwest Review.
* The fall 2001 New Work/New World Series included Key West by Dan O'Brien (United States) and Monsieur Ibrahim et les Fleurs du Coran by Eric Emmanuel Schmitt (France), translated by Stephane Laporte and Bintou by Koffi Kwahulé (Ivory Coast).
Next in the New Work/New World series is Smashing by Brooke Berman (United States), directed by Michael John Garces (Oct. 30-Nov. 4). In it, "a 21-year-old Abby, globetrotting daughter of a New York Literary lion, discovers she is the undisguised subject of the sexy and scathing best-seller written by her former lover."
The Play Company co-produced the world premiere of the comedy High Dive with MCC and the Long Wharf in February 2001. Other fall 2001 activity includes a benefit reading of the new book "The Diaries of Kenneth Tynan" performed by Malcolm McDowell on Nov. 5 and a Public Reading Series of plays and literature "from around the world and across the decades." The season will continue with a winter 2002 production of Alexander Cunningham's new play, No. 11 (Blue & White).
For Play Company information or reservations please call (212) 206 1515.
— By Kenneth Jones