Two Couples Are Flooded With Feeling in NYC Premiere of D'Amour's Cataract

News   Two Couples Are Flooded With Feeling in NYC Premiere of D'Amour's Cataract The Cataract, Lisa D'Amour's poetic new play about a Midwestern couple who welcome a Southern couple into their lives, makes its New York premiere March 22 in a staging by The Women's Project.
Tug Coker and Vanessa Aspillaga in Cataract.
Tug Coker and Vanessa Aspillaga in Cataract. Photo by Gerry Goodstein

Katie Pearl directs the production at WP's Julia Miles Theater in midtown Manhattan. Opening is April 2. Performances continue to April 15. Performances March 22 and 28 are "pay what you can" performances.

"With the mighty Mississippi serving as a powerful backdrop, Lisa D'Amour's stark and poetic play fuses the natural elements of wind, water, wood and stone to the interiors of its four characters," according to Women's Project. "At the dawn of the new age, upstanding Midwesterners Cyrus and Lottie take in a transient Southern couple, Dan and Dinah. Dreams converge with sexual tension, suppressed emotions with desire, flooding the carefully laid landscape Cyrus and Lottie have designed."

The cast features Vanessa Aspillaga (Dinah), who last summer played Audrey opposite Richard Thomas in The Public Theater's As You Like It; Barnaby Carpenter (Cyrus), who appeared in Humble Boy at Manhattan Theatre Club as well as Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Toward the Somme and Far East at Lincoln Center Theater; Kelly McAndrew (Lottie), of Broadway's Cat On a Hot Tin Roof (with Ned Beatty and Jason Patrick); and Tug Coker (Dan), who makes his Off-Broadway debut here.

The set design is by Rachel Hauck, the lighting design is by Sarah Sidman, the costume design is by Sarah Beers and the original music and sound design is by Daniel Baker.

Lisa D'Amour is a playwright, solo performer and multidisciplinary theatre artist. Recent projects include LandMARK, an outdoor interactive art event at the Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis; Nita & Zita, which received a 2003 OBIE Award and toured in 2005 to the Contemporary Arts Center (New Orleans), the Walker Arts Center (Minnneapolis) and HERE Arts Center (NYC); and Dream of a West Texas Marsupial Girl, a musical for children that will premiere at Children's Theatre Company (Minneapolis) in 2007. Director Katie Pearl is a both theatre director and performer who collaborates with writers, musicians, and visual artists on new plays and site-specific performance events. She has collaborated on projects with Lisa D'Amour for nine years.

The Julia Miles Theater is at 424 W. 55th Street.

The performance schedule for The Cataract is Wednesday through Saturday at 8 PM, Saturday at 2 PM and Sunday at 3 PM (except on Sunday, April 2, there is no 3 PM performance; instead there is a 7 PM performance). Additional performances play March 28 at 8 PM and April 12 at 2 PM. All tickets are $52 (including $2 restoration fee) and can be purchased by going to Telecharge.com or call (212) 239-6200 or visit the box office at the Julia Miles Theater.

For information regarding groups, single tickets and student rates, call (212) 757-3900 or click www.womensproject.org.

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Since 1978, Women's Project "has been devoted to producing rich and imaginative work for the American stage while cultivating the next generation of exceptional women theatre artists and redefining their position and influence in the 21st century."

Founded by Julia Miles, and now under the leadership of Loretta Greco and Julie Crosby, the Women's Project has staged 115 productions, over 410 readings and workshops, and published eight anthologies of produced plays by women. In addition to main stage productions, Women’s Project fosters emerging artists through its cultivation programs: the Directors Lab and Playwrights Lab, new play development initiatives, and Women's Work, an annual festival of new work.

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Women's Project is offering two "pay what you can" performances of The Cataract, 8 PM March 22 and 8 PM March 28. Tickets will be available at the Julia Miles Theater beginning at 3 PM on the day of performance only on a first-come, first-served basis. Cash only. Subject to availability. No refunds or exchanges. The suggested minimum is $20, tickets are regularly priced $52.

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