Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, the respected Washington, DC, not-for-profit devoted to new works and edgier content, announced plays for its 2002-03 season, including a season opener with a 9/11 setting.
The Woolly Mammoth season will be split between the Kennedy Center's AFI Theater and Aaron and Cecile Goldman Theater at the DCJCC.
The season begins with Recent Tragic Events (Aug. 19- Sept. 29), a world premiere by Craig Wright (The Pavilion). "When the dice roll, everything changes," according to the season announcement. "The randomness and unpredictability of life are given a stunningly theatrical spin — during a blind date in Minneapolis on September 12, 2001. Andrew, a self-effacing and shy young bookstore clerk is meeting foxy ad exec Waverly for their first date. But a call announcing that Waverly's sister is missing in New York, plus an unexpected visit by a famous novelist, send the evening on an entirely different course. This ironic, bittersweet comedy ponders the unexpected connections we make in the wake of national tragedy."
The season includes:
• The Day Room, the hospital-set existential farce by Don DeLillo (Dec. 16-Jan. 12, 2003, at the AFI Theater), a past hit for Woolly Mammoth, featuring Rob Leo Roy and Grover Gardner, directed by Howard Shalwitz. • Jump/Cut, a world premiere by Neena Beber (Feb. 24-March 30, 2003 at the DCJCC). "A search for purpose in their directionless lives drives a young couple to a big decision — to make a film," according to the season announcement. "But not just any film, a documentary about Dave, their funny, brilliant, but manic-depressive friend. Fueled by their voyeuristic fascination and their altruistic desire to get Dave up off the couch, Paul and Karen drive their pet project past the breaking point. The complex love triangle that develops leads to a film that is testament to both Dave's vibrancy and his inner nightmares. Former MTV writer Neena Beber splices together telling moments in a fast-paced format to create a gripping new American drama." The received a reading at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in 2000 and later won the festival's Weissberger Award.
• A show by writer, performer and humorist Sandra Tsing Loh (March 29–April 20, 2003 at the AFI Theater). "We are currently working with Sandra to choose one of her dynamic, award-winning shows to be performed here in DC," according to the announcement. "Whether it's a politically incorrect tale of growing up Chinese-German in Southern California, or an insightful and darkly funny examination of the world we inhabit in the new millennium, Sandra Tsing Loh is a high-energy virtuoso and wry wordsmith who will keep you laughing, thinking, and talking."
• Patience by Jason Sherman, directed by Howard Shalwitz (June 16–July 20, 2003 at the AFI Theater). The Canadian Sherman "puts a new twist on an old story — the Book of Job, from a uniquely 2000 perspective. Black humor and sharp dialogue accent the downward spiral of Paul, an aggressive and self-absorbed cell-phone executive carelessly coasting though life. Chased by fate, Paul is bombarded by a series of devastating events that force him to confront his own moral bankruptcy and longing for a fresh start. Jason Sherman, one of the most powerful voices in Canadian theater, takes a penetrating look at how we live our lives today, the ricochet effect our actions have on others, and whether true redemption is possible in this post-modern age."
For subscription information, call (202) 393-3939 or visit www.woollymammoth.net.
— By Kenneth Jones