Open Fist's "First Look Festival" Launches July 23 with Fernando

News   Open Fist's "First Look Festival" Launches July 23 with Fernando
Los Angeles' Open Fist Theatre Company's "First Look Festival," featuring a world premiere from Tony nominee Neil LaBute, begins performances July 23.

Running through Sept. 13, the first annual "First Look Festival" comprises six staged readings presented in repertory and four full productions.

The festival begins with Steven Haworth's Fernando, directed by Charles Otte, and will also feature Karen Hartman's Goliath, directed by Marya Mazor; and Julie Hebert's St. Joan and the Dancing Sickness, directed by Randee Trabitz.

Reasons to Be Pretty playwright LaBute offers a double-bill of his plays The New Testament and Helter Skelter, beginning Aug. 20.

Bjorn Johnson directs the world premiere of The New Testament in which "a writer and his producer try to recast an important role in a new play." LaBute will direct his play Helter Skelter, in which "a gaping wound opens in the side of a seemingly happy relationship."

Staged readings include George Brant's Elephant's Graveyard, directed by Michael Franco; Mark Wilson's Both, directed by Martha Demson; Rolfe Kent's It Was the End of the Affair and the Beginning; Brooke Berman's Sam and Lucy, directed by Caitlin Moon; Rick Pagano's Old Actor Fights, directed by Alex Wright; and Francis Ya Chu Cowhig's Lidless, directed by Martha Demson. The festival cast features Bjorn Johnson, Persia White, Robert Lesko, Laura Flanagan, Wyatt Fenner, Anna Khaja, Richard Knolla, Ayana Hampton, Miriam Glover, Michael Franco, Andrew Schlessinger, Dustin Eastman, Pilar Alvarez, Sharon Sharth, Charles Reese, Willie Carpenter, Barbara Schofield, Bruce Dickenson, Matt Borrel, Alex Wright, Tina Preston, Amanda Weier, Ben Burdick, David Castellani, Shawn MacAuley, Ina Russell Kenvin McCorkle, Rod Sell and Colin Walker.

Designing "First Look" are Myung Hee Cho and Sarah Ryung Clement (scenic design); Charlie Otte, Chris Wojcieszyn and Edward Marks (lighting design); Peter Carlstadt, John Zalewski, Mark Wheaton and Weba Garretson (sound design); and Chris Wright and Christy M. Hauptman (costume design).

For tickets visit OpenFist, or phone (323) 882-6912.

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