Public Theater Will Welcome Gatz, Kron, The Great Game and Guirgis World Premiere in 2010-11

News   Public Theater Will Welcome Gatz, Kron, The Great Game and Guirgis World Premiere in 2010-11
A marathon reading of "The Great Gatsby," a look at Afghanistan from multiple perspectives and the New York premiere of Lisa Kron's new play will punctuate the 2010-11 season of The Public Theater.
Scott Shepherd and Annie McNamara in Gatz at American Repertory Theater.
Scott Shepherd and Annie McNamara in Gatz at American Repertory Theater. Photo by Gene Pittman

As previously announced, the season of the famed downtown not-for-profit will also include the New York City premiere of Tony Kushner's The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide to Capitalism and Socialism With a Key to the Scriptures, directed by Michael Greif, plus Rinne Groff's Compulsion, directed by Public artistic director Oskar Eustis.

The season will conclude with a co-production with LAByrinth Theater Company: the world premiere of Stephen Adly Guirgis' The Motherf**ker With the Hat.

The Public Theater will also launch a $55 "Anniversary Membership Campaign," with a limited number of memberships now on sale. (For an annual $55 tax-deductible donation, patrons will be able to purchase tickets throughout the year at the low member price of $40 or less. Public Theater Anniversary Members will get to purchase Kushner's new play for the extra low price of $20.)

Eustis and executive director Andrew D. Hamingson announced the season line-up March 25.

Here's the Public's 2010-11 season at a glance: Gatz
New York Premiere
By Elevator Repair Service
Text: "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Directed by John Collins
Sept. 26–Oct. 31

"One morning in the low-rent office of a mysterious small business, an employee finds a copy of 'The Great Gatsby' in the clutter of his desk. He starts to read it out loud, and doesn't stop. At first his co-workers hardly notice. But after a series of strange coincidences, it's no longer clear whether he's reading the book or the book is transforming him."

The cast of 13 actors includes Scott Shepherd (The Wooster Group's Hamlet). Gatz will be presented as a marathon theatrical event, with two intermissions and a dinner break, four times per week.

Carson Elrod and Heidi Schreck in the Los Angeles run of The Wake.
photo by Craig Schwartz

In the Wake
New York Premiere
By Lisa Kron
Directed by Leigh Silverman
Oct. 19–Nov. 21

"Obie Award winners Lisa Kron and Leigh Silverman (creators of Well) return to The Public with a witty, passionate and intellectually charged meditation on love and country. In Kron's inimitable wry style, In the Wake nimbly traverses the switchback turns of the struggle to comprehend our current culture and its politics, while trying to maintain steady bonds among lovers, family and friends. Even when the worst is over, the decisions (and elections) of yesterday leave a wake of longing." In the Wake was originally commissioned by Center Theatre Group and will receive its world premiere in Los Angeles on March 28.

The Great Game: Afghanistan
Presented by The Tricycle Theatre Company
New York Premiere/NYU Skirball Center
By Richard Bean, Lee Blessing, David Edgar, David Greig, Amit Gupta, Ron Hutchinson, Stephen Jeffreys, Abi Morgan, Ben Ockrent, Simon Stephens, Colin Teevan and Joy Wilkinson
Directed by Nicolas Kent and Indhu Rubasingham
Presented in association with NYU Skirball Center
Supported by the British Council
Nov. 30-Dec. 19

"Through the eyes of 12 leading British and American playwrights and the voices of those actively involved in the war and on U.S. & NATO policy in Afghanistan, The Tricycle Theatre Company's The Great Game: Afghanistan explores, in three separate thrilling and provocative evenings, the culture and history of Afghanistan since Western involvement in 1842 to the present day. All three parts can be seen separately and do not need to be experienced in chronological order. Trilogy days will be held on weekends. This ambitious political and theatrical event was nominated for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement."

Part 1: Invasions & Independence – 1842-1930: Starts with the first Anglo-Afghan War of 1842 and moves to Afghan independence in the 1920s.

Part 2: Communism, The Mujahideen & The Taliban – 1979-1996: Continues the story from the Russian invasion, through to US/CIA arming of the Mujahideen to the coming of the Taliban.

Part 3: Enduring Freedom – 1996-2010: Starts with the events of 7/11 in Northern Afghanistan, through to the overthrow of Taliban, the aid agencies working in the country and the current war against the insurgents.

By Rinne Groff
Directed by Oskar Eustis
A world-premiere co-production with Berkeley Repertory Theatre and Yale Repertory Theatre
February 1-March 6, 2011

"It is 1951 and Sid Silver is on a mission to be the guardian of one of the most moving and provocative accounts of the 20th century. Deeply moved by Anne Frank's diary, he is driven to bring her story to the American masses by promoting the book's publication and adapting the diary into a work of theater. Inspired by the story of Meyer Levin, Compulsion brings playwright Rinne Groff and The Public Theater artistic director Oskar Eustis (The Ruby Sunrise) together again with a complex and inventive telling that is part historical fiction, part investigation into what makes a man obsess, and part exploration of an untold dimension of Anne Frank's powerful and enduring legacy."

The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide to Capitalism and Socialism With a Key to the Scriptures
New York Premiere
By Tony Kushner
Directed by Michael Greif
A co-production with Signature Theatre Company in association with The Guthrie Theater
March 22-June 12, 2011

"In the summer of 2007, Gus Marcantonio, a retired longshoreman and card-carrying member of the CPUSA (the American Communist Party), summons his children to the family's Brooklyn brownstone for a series of shocking announcements. As Gus' kids attempt to address a profound crisis in their difficult father's difficult life, their own spectacularly messy problems — and spectacularly messed-up lovers, spouses and exes — follow them home. [The play] explores revolutionary versus evolutionary change, the history of Italian-American radicalism, sex, sexual identity, prostitution, parenting, politics, theology, real estate, unions of all kinds, and debts both repaid and unpayable."

The Motherf**ker With the Hat
World Premiere
By Stephen Adly Guirgis
Presented by LAByrinth Theater Company and The Public Theater
Spring 2011

"A new high-octane, verbal swordfest about love, fidelity, and misplaced haberdashery from Stephen Adly Guirgis (Little Flower of East Orange; The Last Days of Judas Iscariot). Jackie and Veronica have been in love since the eighth grade. But now, Jackie is on parole and living clean and sober under the guidance of his sponsor, Ralph D, while still living and loving with his volatile soul mate Veronica who is fiercely loving, but far from sober. Still, their love is pure. And true. Nothing can come between them — except a hat. Guirgis, as always, provides an eclectic and lively cast of characters seeking to 'put away their childish things,' and their collective quest — and missteps — result in one of Guirgis' most open-hearted, laugh-out-loud and poignant plays to date."


The 2010-2011 season will see the fourth year of Public LAB, "the vital new play series conceived in association with LAByrinth Theater Company and designed to respond to new work immediately, and present fresh, raw, and relevant plays that embrace The Public's history as a theater receptive to the big issues, the public issues of our time." With minimally designed productions and short rehearsal periods, Public LAB gives writers "the essential opportunity to develop new work with a director, designers, and actors and to see their work in front of an audience." Tickets to all performances will remain $10.

Under the Radar will return for its seventh year (Jan. 5-16, 2011), "showcasing cutting-edge theatre from around the world."


Michael Esper and Stephen Spinella in The Guthrie Theater run of <i>The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide...</i>
Michael Esper and Stephen Spinella in The Guthrie Theater run of The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide... Photo by Michal Daniel
Today’s Most Popular News: