World Premiere of Jeff Daniels' The Meaning of Almost Everything Is Among Purple Rose Plays in 2012-13

By Michael Gioia
July 16, 2012

Purple Rose Theatre Company founder Jeff Daniels' new play, The Meaning of Almost Everything, will get its world premiere as part of PRTC's upcoming 2012-13 season in Michigan. Actor Daniels, a Tony Award nominee for God of Carnage, stars on the HBO series "The Newsroom."



Directed by Guy Sanville, the cast will feature Matt Gwynn and Nate Mitchell in the comedy that "pushes the bounds of dramatic realism with this hilarious and sometimes painful exploration of the human condition," according to PRTC. The Meaning of Almost Everything will run Jan. 10-March 9, 2013, in Chelsea, MI, Daniels' hometown, where he founded PRTC.

Read the Playbill.com Stage to Screens column with playwright Daniels, who talks about his new play as well as his work in Aaron Sorkin new series, "The Newsroom," about the state of broadcast journalism. 

The company's 22nd season will also include Superior Donuts by Tracy Letts, 33 Variations by Moisés Kaufman and the world premiere of Miles & Ellie by Don Zolidis.

Superior Donuts by Pulitzer Prize winner Letts (August: Osage County) will kick off the season Sept. 20. This comedy-drama, according to PRTC, is "set in one of Chicago's most diverse neighborhoods [and] explores the unlikely friendship between a burned-out donut shop owner and his young, idealistic new employee." Performances will continue through Dec. 15.

Directed by Sanville, the cast will feature Randolph Mantooth (NBC's "Emergency!") as donut shop owner Arthur Przybyszewski, Ryan Carlson, David Daoust, Alex Leydenfrost, Brian Marable, Michelle Mountain, Michael Brian Ogden, Sandy Ryder and Lynch Travis.

Kaufman's 33 Variations will run March 28-June 1, 2013. Directed by Sanville, the cast will feature Michelle Mountain as Katherine Brandt, David Bendena, Daniel Britt, Richard McWilliams, Michael Brian Ogden, Jan Radcliff and Melanie Reihing.

Here's how the work is billed: "33 Variations bridges past and present as musicologist Katherine Brandt struggles to solve the mystery behind her professional passion: Beethoven's oft overlooked 'Diabelli Variations.' As she races against time, Katherine not only discovers the true nature of Beethoven’s work, but gains insight into the other mystery in her life: her daughter."

The premiere of Zolidis' Miles & Ellie, which will run June 20-Aug. 31, 2013, is a "romantic comedy about young love gone wrong [that] will ask if it's possible to get a second chance at your first love." Directed by Sanville, the cast will feature Rusty Mewha, Michelle Mountain, Rhiannon Ragland, Bill Simmons and Cheryl Turski.

Founded in 1991 by Daniels, The Purple Rose Theatre Company is "dedicated to producing the new American play and creating opportunities for Midwest theatre professionals."

The Purple Rose Theatre Company is located at 137 Park Street in Chelsea, MI. For more information and tickets, call (734) 433-7643 or visit PurpleRoseTheatre.org.