In light of all the new play discussion going on, this seems like an appropriate and exciting series of events. Anyone in the New York area thinking about going? Depending on how my schedule works out, I will be able to attend between two to four of the sessions. To reserve your seats, call 609.258.ARTS.

Info from the website:
What is the McCarterLab?
Under the auspices of the McCarterLab, writers, composers, and directors develop new plays and musicals through commissions, workshops, readings, and other unique programs. Since 1990, McCarter has produced 48 new plays from leading and emerging American playwrights, including Edward Albee, Eric Bogosian, Steven Dietz, Christopher Durang, Beth Henley, Tarell Alvin McCraney, Theresa Rebeck, and Regina Taylor, among many others. Our multi-faceted, highly customizable approach has made us one of the foremost theaters in the nation for the development of new plays and musicals.

Friday, January, 22nd, 7pm: In The Writer’s Voice
Writers include Nilo Cruz (the Pulitzer Prize-winning Anna in the Tropics), Danai Gurira (last year’s Lab Festival hit Eclipsed), Sarah Hammond (Green Girl and Kudzu), Peter Mills (Illyria at The Shakespeare Theatre of NJ and the Drama Desk Award-nominated The Pursuit of Persephone), Jose Rivera (Marisol and Cloud Tectonics, Oscar nominated for The Motorcycle Diaries), and others!

Saturday, January, 23rd, 7pm: The Luck of the Irish by Kirsten Greenidge, Directed by Lisa Peterson
The Taylor sisters’ longing for a community is in conflict with their family’s secrets. Kirsten Greenidge examines the complicated relationship between race and class as she paints a deeply personal and moving portrait of one family’s lifelong search for acceptance. Kirsten Greenidge is a recent NEA/TCG playwright-in-residence at Woolly Mammoth whose work includes Rust, Bossa Nova, and The Curious Walk of the Salamander.

Monday, January, 25th, 7pm: Every Tongue Confess, by Marcus Gardley, Directed by Liesl Tommy
Rooted in the music and rhythms of the black church, Every Tongue Must Confess is a lyrical, deeply moving, and epic work. Gardley sets race, religion, and family ablaze with imagination, humor, and heart. Award-winning poet-playwright, Marcus Gardley is the author of the plays Love is a Dream House in Lorin, …And Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi, and dance of the holy ghost, among several others. This reading is co-produced with Arena Stage.

Friday, January, 29th, 7pm: The Minotaur, by Anna Ziegler, Directed by Erica Gould
A present-day version of a classic Greek myth, Anna Ziegler’s The Minotaur is a contemporary take on love, honor, and human connection. With refreshing originality and wit, The Minotaur explores how we break out of history in order to shape new stories for ourselves. Anna Ziegler is a poet and playwright whose plays include BFF, Novel, Dov and Ali, Photograph 51, and Variations on a Theme.

Sunday, February, 7th, 11am: The Epic of Sunjata, Written and Directed by Christopher T. Parks
A Lab Festival event especially for young audiences! When a young boy is prophesied to be the greatest king of his people, his loving mother must first teach him how to navigate a magical and dangerous world. One of the greatest legends of West African Mande tradition is brought to life in the excerpts that we’ll be sharing from this interactive, experiential theater piece. Written and directed by McCarter Theatre’s Director of Education, Christopher T. Parks (The Odyssey Experience and The Adventures of Perseus), this work-in-progress presentation is fun for the whole family and perfect for ages 6–12.

Wednesday, February, 10th, 7pm: Maple and Vine, by Jordan Harrison, Directed by Kip Fagan
Katha and Ryu have become allergic to their fast-paced modern lives. After they meet a charismatic man from a community of 1950’s re-enactors, they forsake cell phones and sushi for Jell-O molds and Tupperware parties. This witty and inventive new play explores the virtue of slowness and the joy of difficulty. Jordan Harrison is a 2009-2010 Guggenheim Fellow and a 2009-2010 Hodder Fellow at Princeton and is currently writing commissions for Actors Theatre of Louisville/Berkeley Rep, Ars Nova, and Playwrights Horizons.

Thursday, February, 11th, 7pm: Saturday Night / Sunday Morning, by Katori Hall, Directed by Liesl Tommy
While American soldiers endure the last days of World War II, the women of Miss Mary’s Press & Curl are fighting their own battles with the heat, their hair, and their fragile hearts. Set in Memphis’ tight-knit black community, Saturday Night/Sunday Morning is a joyous, heartfelt celebration of love, friendship and sisterhood in the face of loneliness and despair. Memphis, Tennessee native Katori Hall’s plays include Hurt Village, Hoodoo Love, and The Mountaintop, which recently performed on London’s West End to enormous acclaim.

Friday, February, 12th, 2pm: Sleeping Beauty Wakes, by Brendan Milburn, Rachel Sheinkin, and Valerie Vigoda, Directed by Rebecca Taichman, Musical Direction by James Sampliner
When a young beauty whose father claims she’s been sleeping for centuries is brought to a 21st-century sleep disorder clinic, all the patients begin to find themselves sharing a familiar fairy tale dream. With a catchy and lyrical score ranging from aural dreamscapes to rocking rebellion, this musical about a father, daughter, and unlikely suitor dives into the magical space between dreaming and waking. This effervescent new musical is written by the team that created the much-acclaimed holiday hit, Striking 12:Tony Award-winning book writer Rachel Sheinkin (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee), composer Brendan Milburn, and lyricist Valerie Vigoda, both of the band GrooveLily (A Midsummer Night’s Dream).

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