At the End, Dark NYC Tale, Gets April 28 Reading Featuring Esper, Kahn and More

News   At the End, Dark NYC Tale, Gets April 28 Reading Featuring Esper, Kahn and More
Billy Finnegan's At the End, a dark vision of a future New York City, gets read April 28 as part of Theater for the New City's "New City, New Blood" reading series.

Nela Wagman directs the reading, to feature Lauren Chen, Marcia DeBonis (Fran's Bed), Michael Esper (The Four of Us), Ato Essandoh (The Public Theater's Mother Courage at Delacorte), Ian Kahn and Rebecca Wisocky (Vineyard's God's Ear, Roundabout's The Play's the Thing).

The presentation is 7:30 PM April 28. A contribution of $5 is suggested.

The reading (with wine and cheese, to boot) is at 155 First Avenue (between Ninth and Tenth Streets) in Manhattan. To RSVP, e-mail

In At the End, according to Theater for the New City (TNC) notes, "the mundane becomes sinister for six people in a darker, deadly, nearly decimated New York City, ten years hence. Boyfriends bicker — and one of them might be sick. A young girl gets ready for school — chaperoned by her mother's bodyguard. A patient consults her doctor — who offers what kind of procedure exactly? Trapped in a hospital elevator, the characters collide almost comically and splinter apart quite tragically, grappling with the severity and confusion of life at the end. As the world falls apart, the ties that bind break, unleashing questions long avoided, resentments long ignored, and confrontations long postponed."

Finnegan's plays include Any Solid Color Other Than Black, which was developed at MCC Theater, and Esther Demsack, which was read earlier this year at New York Theatre Workshop under the direction of Stafford Arima. Other plays include Little Boy Lost; The Dander of Female Poplars, or One Queens Parade; Tenth Place; Daisy Chained; and Begin Measured Mile. As a cabaret writer/director he worked on Dayton's Divine Miss P and Katie Pees: All Over You! As artistic director of the award-wining Watermark Theater, Wagman produced The WordFire Festival of Solo Performance, and directed numerous full-length new works. She directed the world premiere My Left Breast by Susan Miller for Actors Theatre of Louisville, for Watermark Theater in New York (where it won an Obie) and for its national tours.

For 35 years, Theater for the New City has nurtured hundreds of playwrights through its Emerging Playwrights Program. In June 2006 it launched "New City, New Blood," a play-reading series designed to serve our audiences and writers better. Curated by Michael Scott-Price, TNC literary manager, the series "will provide a hearing for worthy plays in earlier stages of development." Audiences will provide feedback, and artists "will gain valuable insight from audience response."

Visit for details about upcoming readings.

Upcoming TNC readings include:

  • May 12 - The 10th Life of a Tom Cat by Trav S.D. "A pop singer from the swing era cracks up when the mistakes of his youth catch up with him. Inspired by Trav S.D.'s experience working for a well-known international pop singer."
  • June 9 - Belle of the Ball Bearings by Elizabeth Battersby. "What do a Shop girl, a Bike messenger, a Rabbi, Military man, an eight-year-old, one Anarchist mom and a Grandmother have in common? Easy – Bicycles!"
  • June 16 - People Like You by Connor Ratliff. "Two women devise a blackmail scheme. Step one: find a married man. Step Two: Photograph him during a series of seemingly chance encounters with an attractive and flirtatious young woman. Step Three: Confront him with a simple choice: Your money, or your marriage?"
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