Jenny Jules, Jeremiah W. Birkett, Donnetta Lavinia Grays Cast in Arena's Ruined

News   Jenny Jules, Jeremiah W. Birkett, Donnetta Lavinia Grays Cast in Arena's Ruined
Casting has been announced for the Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater's upcoming production of Lynn Nottage's Pulitzer Prize-winning Ruined, which will be staged in the round by Charles Randolph-Wright.

Performances in the Fichandler are scheduled for April 22-June 5, 2011.

The cast will be led by Jenny Jules as Mama Nadi, Jeremiah W. Birkett as Christian, Donnetta Lavinia Grays as Salima, Lawrence Redmond as Mr. Harari, Jamairais Malone as Josephine and Psalmayene 24 as Fortune. The ensemble includes Jamar Brown, Ellentinya I. Dodd, Thony Mena, Jason Phillips, David Samuel, Anastasia Stewart and Hectorlyne P. Wuor.

The production also features live music onstage, with cast members David Foreman on percussion, Mongezi Ntaka and Ralph Waldo Robertson on guitar, and Daniel Ssuuna on traditional African instruments.

"In war-torn Congo," press note state, "Mama Nadi keeps the peace between customers on both sides of the civil war by serving everything from cold beers to warm beds. This shrewd matriarch both protects and profits from the women whose bodies have become battlegrounds 'ruined' by the brutality of government soldiers and rebel forces alike. Inspired by interviews conducted in Africa, this searing play is an engrossing and uncommonly human story told with humor and song, revealing the immeasurable loss and hopelessness of war, yet finding affirmation in life and hope."

The production will also feature set design by Alexander V. Nichols, costume design by ESosa, lighting design by Michael Gilliam and sound design by composer Lindsay Jones. Tickets may be purchased online at, by phone at (202) 488-3300 or at the Sales Office at 1101 6th St., SW, D.C.

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