LaBute to Premiere New Testament and Direct Helter Skelter at First Look Festival | Playbill

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News LaBute to Premiere New Testament and Direct Helter Skelter at First Look Festival Tony-nominated playwright Neil LaBute will present two short works as part of the Open Fist Theatre Company's "First Look Festival," which begins July 23 in Los Angeles.
Neil LaBute
Neil LaBute Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Running through Sept. 13, the festival will feature four full productions (running in repertory) and six staged readings.

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

Additional fully produced short works include Steven Haworth's Fernando, directed by Charles Otte; Karen Hartman's Golaith, directed by Marya Mazor; and Julie Hebert's St. Joan and the Dancing Sickness, directed by Randee Trabitz.

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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