Theater Emory's 2014-2015 Season Focuses on Culturally Charged Theater

Harold Pinter, photo by Martin Rosenbaum

August 27, 2014

With its 2014-15 season, "Global Perspectives: A Festival from Pinter to Rivera," Theater Emory presents a yearlong festival celebrating the exciting work of diverse playwrights and their approaches to creating culturally charged theater. The season begins in the fall with Pinter Fest, a celebration of Nobel Prize-winning playwright Harold Pinter, and finishes with spring offerings of staged readings from culturally diverse playwrights, culminating with a production of the spirited and magical "Marisol" by José Rivera.

"We are focusing on writers whose work has influenced not only how we create plays but also on those new voices who are transforming how we view our national identity, our politics, and living in the 21st century," says Janice Akers, Theater Emory's artistic director. "These are playwrights who have ripped open topics of social significance and are demanding we give them fresh attention."

Presentations throughout the year will include full productions as well as staged readings, roundtable readings, and performance events.

Fall Focus: Pinter Fest

The 2014-2015 season kicks off September 22 with the special event "Julian Sands: A Celebration of Harold Pinter" directed by John Malkovich. With personal anecdotes and reflections drawn from their work together, British actor Julian Sands combines Harold Pinter's poems and political prose to create a fresh and intimate insight in the Nobel laureate's literary legacy. This program is presented by the Donna and Marvin Schwartz Artist in Residence Program.

Harold Pinter¿s best known works will be explored in two major productions and several staged readings. The season opens with "Pinter Revue," October 2-11. Directed by theater faculty member Donald McManus "Pinter Revue" is a series of short scripts including "Mountain Language," "New World Order," "That's Your Trouble" and more. The Revue pieces cover the late 1950s to the 1980s and reflect the British tradition of sketch comedy.

Pinter Fest continues with "A Pinter Kaleidoscope," October 31-November 9. Directed by faculty member Brent Glenn, "A Pinter Kaleidoscope" is an exploration of several of Pinter's seminal works including "No Man's Land," "The Caretaker," "The Birthday Party" along with other writings and poetry. Audiences will move through design installations, view scenes in various locations, and follow Pinter characters throughout the evening.

In addition to the two full productions, Theater Emory presents a series of staged readings highlighting some of Pinter's most famous works, October 18-November 8. Readings include "A Kind of Alaska" and "The Homecoming" directed respectively by Emory theater professors Tim McDonough and John Ammerman, and "Moonlight," directed by emeritus professor Brenda Bynum. Finally, "Pinter Visions: A Symposium" brings Pinter scholars, playwrights, directors, performers and Emory faculty together for an interactive weekend of conversation, performance and film screenings, October 31-November 2. For a complete list of Pinter Fest events, visit theater.emory.edu/Pinter.

Global Voices: Spring Staged Readings

In spring 2015, Theater Emory offers a series of staged readings, introducing audiences to the exciting voices of twelve writers from several cultures: Native American, Latina/Latino, Asian, South Asian, African American and Middle Eastern. Guest playwrights, directors, performers and students will participate in this opportunity to view the world, family and politics through a fresh lens.

"These playwrights are particularly compelling because they give us surprising, even startling - new ways to consider who we are and what we expect from one another," explains Akers. "In a way, these writers are reminding us that there is not one American identity and not one American theater."

Playwrights include Ayad Akhtar, Marie Clements, Jack Dalton, Snehal Desai, Edith Freni, Anne García-Romero, Diane Glancy, Lauren Gunderson, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Aditi Brennan Kapil, Joshua Sobol, and Zhu Yi. Readings take place January 27-February 15.

Marisol

The 2014-2015 season concludes with "Marisol" by José Rivera, directed by David Crowe and presented April 2-12. This highly-charged play is set in post-apocalyptic New York in which Marisol, a young Manhattan professional, finds her world turned upside down by crazed street people and a visiting angel announcing a new world order that is multi-cultural and full of optimism. Rivera¿s other plays include "Cloud Tectonics," "References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot," and "Sonnets for an Old Century." Rivera received an Academy Award nomination for his screenplay, "The Motorcycle Diaries," the first nomination for a screenplay by a Puerto Rican writer. 

For more information on the Theater Emory 2014-2015 season, visit theater.emory.edu. For tickets visit arts.emory.edu or call the Arts at Emory Box Office at 404.727.5050.

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Theater Emory
Theater Emory, the professional company in residence at Emory University, produces a wide range of drama, from classics to new works. Liberal arts undergraduates work with professional directors, actors, designers, playwrights, dramaturgs, choreographers, composers, music directors and stage managers.