Inspired by the death of Gorman's brother to a heroin overdose, the playwright set out to pen a trilogy exploring the issues of addiction within the fishing industry, of which his brother was a part.
The limited engagement, running through Jan. 6, 2008, is presented in association with the Forty Hour Club. The Honor and the Glory of Whaling is preceded by a 20-minute documentary of the creation of Gorman's first play in the trilogy, UltraLight.
The LaMaMa cast comprises David Bennett, David Branch, Ruth Coughlin, J.P. Guimont, Al Joyce, Michael Kimball and Anita Menotti under the co-direction of cast member David Bennett and playwright Michael Gorman.
Honor and the Glory of Whaling is described as "an epic tale that follows the fate of legendary New England fishing captain Robby Foerster and his boat 'The Northern Star.' In a community sorely in need of something to be proud of, stories of his reckless courage are a source of pride. After a fatal first encounter with heroin, the 'Great White Whale' of the modern fishing community, Robby falls deeply into addiction. The Honor and Glory of Whaling explores the role of myth and storytelling as both sustaining and destructive forces in a Northeast coastal fishing community, engaging the audience in a dramatic critical debate as to what extent tragedy, held to be inherent in the fishing community, might be avoidable."
The opening-night performance includes an open-panel discussion with playwright Israel Horovitz. Later discussions are scheduled to include panelists from recovery, addiction, theatre and law enforcement communities. The production features an original score by flautist Tonya "Tbird Luv" Ridgely, with fellow creative team members Tim Schellenbaum (sound design), Carla Bosnjak (lighting design), Sarah Boyden (costume design) and Marguerite White (set design/installation).
Tickets are available by calling (212) 475-7710 or by visiting www.lamama.org. LaMaMa e.t.c. is located at 74A East 4th Street in Manhattan.