Six World Premieres by Baitz, Mee, Woodard and Gappers Musical Opens New Kirk Douglas Theatre | Playbill

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News Six World Premieres by Baitz, Mee, Woodard and Gappers Musical Opens New Kirk Douglas Theatre The Center Theatre Group has announced the inaugural season lineup for its new Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City which will feature six world premieres including Jon Robin Baitz's Broadway-bound The Paris Letter, plays by Charles L. Mee, Chay Yew, Charlayne Woodard, Nancy Keystone and a new Doug Cooney and David O children's theatre musical, The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip.

“An intimate house this size allows us to really support our development process,” said CTG artistic director Gordon Davidson of the 300-seat venue located in Culver City, California. "I love that this first season at the Douglas also speaks to the vitality of this city’s cultural scene," Davidson noted, citing five of the six works presented are by Los Angeles area artists - Baitz, Keystone, Yew, Woodard and Cooney. "It is appropriate that they will be the first to add their voices to our new theatre and to help us create a vibrant history for this theatre. "

The lineup includes two works aimed at youth audiences — Woodard's Flight by Charlayne and Cooney and O's The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip. "The first season at the Douglas Theatre will be a celebration of the future – of new plays and new audiences. We’re helping to create an enduring repertoire of American work."

The complete lineup is as follows:

  • A Perfect Wedding by Charles L. Mee. (Oct. 31-Nov. 28) Gordon Davidson directs the world premiere of Big Love and Wintertime scribe's tale of the wedding day antics of a young couple. Among the welcome and unwelcome guests to the affair set in a mystical forest are the betrothed's families, fairies, clergy and philosophizing gravediggers.


  • The Paris Letter by Jon Robin Baitz (Dec. 5-Jan. 2, 2005) The Broadway bound work, which receives its world premiere at the new space, centers on a Wall Street hotshot whose past catches up with him and threatens both his personal and professional lives.
  • Flight by Charlayne Woodard (Jan. 16-Feb. 13, 2005) Using African-American folktales and slave stories, the world premiere tells of a young boy separated from his mother, who has been sold off as a slave, and the community that comforts him.
  • The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip book and lyrics by Doug Cooney, music by David O (March 5-19, 2005) Based on the George Saunders book, this world premiere musical set in the small seaside town of Frip, where the townspeople, especially a young girl named Capable, fight off the invasion of gappers — "bright orange, shrieking creatures that love to attach themselves to goats, which stops the flow of goat milk."
  • Apollo - Part 1: Lebensraum by Nancy Keystone (April 3-May 1, 2005) Keystone directs her world premiere, created in collaboration with Critical Mass Performance Group, which combines text, image, movement and music to retell the stories of Wernher von Braun and Arthur Rudolph, scientists of Nazi Germany’s rocket program who become American heroes.
  • A Distant Shore by Chay Yew (May 15-June 12, 2005) A tale of love against tradition and politics that crosses many generations of two families in a small Southeast Asian country. The new Kirk Douglas Theatre joins the Los Angeles-based company's 745-seat Mark Taper Forum and the 1600- to 2000-seat Ahmanson Theatre at the Music Center.

    Subscriptions to the premiere season at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, 9820 Washington Blvd. in downtown Culver City, CA, are available by calling (213) 628-2772. For more information, visit the website at

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