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Every Good Boy Deserves Favor Collaboration with Cleveland Orchestra a Highlight in New Ground Theat

Posted February 19, 2012 in Press Releases

CLEVELAND, OH (February 19, 2012) – From May 3-12, 2012, Cleveland Play House (CPH) will present a variety of new work from nationally recognized artists in its New Ground Theatre Festival (previously known as FusionFest). The centerpiece of this showcase for new theatrical works is Cleveland Play House’s Mainstage production of Sarah Ruhl’s play In the Next Room, or the vibrator play. Another festival highlight is a CPH collaboration with The Cleveland Orchestra on Every Good Boy Deserves Favor,written by Tom Stoppard with a score by André Previn. Newly established for this year’s festival, the Roe Green Award brings a leading American playwright to Cleveland to develop a new project culminating in a public reading and master class. The 2012 winner is Quiara Alegría Hudes, whose book for the musical In the Heights was both a Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award nominee. This new festival award is made possible by the generous support of New Ground Theatre Festival Honorary Producer, Roe Green.

“With a greater focus on new theatre pieces and our move to a new location, it was time to give our festival a new name. New Ground Theatre Festival signifies our commitment to new work and recognizes our fantastic new facilities,” says Michael Bloom, festival creator and CPH Artistic Director.

“We want to put the focus on new plays and theatrical performances,” says Laura Kepley, CPH Associate Artistic Director. “It means CPH becomes a part of the development of future works that will impact American theatre.”

This season, a festival highlight is a collaboration between Cleveland Play House and The Cleveland Orchestra. Every Good Boy Deserves Favor, a CPH premiere, is a play by Tom Stoppard with music by André Previn, and will be performed in the new Allen Theatre with three performances May 3-5, 2012. With a cast of 6 actors and 38 Cleveland Orchestra musicians, Stoppard’s play is a swift 65-minute hilarious and stinging satire on state-sponsored repression. Brilliantly witty and mischievously funny, it centers on two cellmates, both named Alexander Ivanov – one a political protestor and the other a madman who ‘conducts’ an orchestra that only exists in his head. Every Good Boy Deserves Favor is the only play ever written that includes an orchestra as central to the action. Directed by CPH Artistic Director Michael Bloom and conducted by Assistant Conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra James Feddeck, performances of Every Good Boy Deserves Favor are funded in part by the Keithley Fund for Artistic Collaboration.

In addition to In the Next Room and Every Good Boy Deserves Favor, the New Ground Theatre Festival lineup includes a public reading of a new play by Quiara Alegría Hudes, the 2012 winner of the first annual Roe Green Award awarded to a nationally recognized playwright. The award includes a $7,500 cash prize; a week-long residency including rehearsals; a Master Class with CPH Playwrights’ Unit, Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland State University students; and a public reading of a new play. Hudes was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist forIn the Heights. Hudes was also a Pulitzer Prize finalist for Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue, a drama that has been produced around the country and published in numerous anthologies.

Rounding out the line-up are acclaimed performances of new work by renowned solo artists, Lauren Weedman (Bust) and Baba Brinkman (The Rap Guide to Evolution), in addition to readings of new plays including one written by CPH Artistic Director Michael Bloom.

Tickets to New Ground Theatre Festival events go on sale March 1, with an exclusive advance sale for Every Good Boy Deserves Favor for CPH and The Cleveland Orchestra subscribers starting Feb 19. Discounts are available when seeing more than one New Ground Theatre Festival event, and for currently enrolled students under age 25. For tickets and more information, call the PlayhouseSquare box office at (216) 241-6000 or online at www.clevelandplayhouse.com.



NEW GROUND THEATRE FESTIVAL 2012 EVENTS

In the Next Room or the vibrator play by Sarah Ruhl
Presented by Cleveland Play House
April 13 – May 6 13*, 2012 ~ Second Stage
*Now through May 13! Due to advance audience demand, Cleveland Play House has extended the run of In the Next Room or the vibrator play for an additional week
Directed by Laura Kepley
Tickets Available NOW: $49 to $69; call 216-241-6000 or online

At the dawn of electricity, a remarkable treatment for “hysterical” men and women is taking place. Patients arrive troubled and depart delighted with the assistance of the doctor’s “little helper.” One of the most gifted and adventurous American playwrights to emerge in recent years, Sarah Ruhl offers an inspired new comedy about the mysteries of our inner lives.


Every Good Boy Deserves Favor : A Play for Actors and Orchestra by Tom Stoppard (play) and
André Previn (music)
Presented by Cleveland Play House and The Cleveland Orchestra
Directed by Michael Bloom; conducted by James Feddeck
May 3 - 5, 2012; Thu, Fri & Sat @ 7:30pm with pre- and post-show discussions at every performance ~ Allen Theatre
Tickets Available to CPH and Cleveland Orchestra subscribers on Feb 19; to public on March 1; $20 - $45; call 216-241-6000 or online

Written by Tony and Academy Award winner Tom Stoppard, Every Good Boy Deserves Favor features orchestral music by Grammy and Academy Award winner André Previn. Stoppard’s play is a swift 65-minute hilarious and stinging satire on state-sponsored repression. Brilliantly witty and mischievously funny, it centers on two cellmates, both named Alexander Ivanov – one a political protestor and the other a madman who ‘conducts’ an orchestra that only exists in his head.


First Annual Roe Green Award New Play Reading
New Play Readings Presented by Cleveland Play House
Directed by Laura Kepley
May 5, 2012; Time TBD ~ Location TBD
Tickets Available March 1, 2012: Price - pay what you can; call 216-241-6000 or online

Quiara Alegría Hudes will be workshopping a brand new play set during the Vietnam Era heavily influenced by the rock music of the time.


Dorothy Silver Playwriting Winner
Presented by the Mandel Jewish Community Center
Title to be announced in March
May 6, 2012 @ 6:00pm ~ Second Stage
Tickets Available March 1, 2012: Price - pay what you can; call 216-241-6000 or online

The Dorothy Silver Playwriting Competition, sponsored annually by the Mandel Jewish Community Center, is a highly regarded international writing competition for plays about the Jewish experience. For over twenty years countless plays with Jewish themes have been submitted to the competition and many past winners have been produced and received national recognition. Dorothy Silver, for whom the competition is named, is a well-known and respected theatre professional who served as the Mandel JCC’s Cultural Arts Department director for many years.


BUST written and performed by Lauren Weedman

Presented by Cleveland Play House
May 10 - 12, 2012; Thu, Fri, Sat @ 7:30pm ~ Helen Rosenfeld Lewis Bialosky Lab Theatre
Tickets Available March 1, 2012: $25; call 216-241-6000 or online

BUST is Lauren Weedman’s semi-autobiographical play built around her experiences working as a volunteer advocate in a Southern California prison for women. With one foot in Hollywood and the other in jail, the former Daily Show correspondent careens wildly between the two worlds, taking us on a hilarious, poignant, and completely unforgettable ride.


THE RAP GUIDE TO EVOLUTION written and performed by Baba Brinkman

Presented by Cleveland Play House
May 11- 12, 2012; Fri @ 7:30pm, Sat @ 7:00pm & 9:30pm ~ 14th Street Theatre
Tickets Available March 1, 2012: $25; call 216-241-6000 or online

A novel species of theatre combining the wit, poetry and charisma of a great rapper with the accuracy and rigor of a scientific expert, Baba Brinkman’s The Rap Guide to Evolutionuses hip-hop as a vehicle to communicate the facts of evolution while illuminating the origins and complexities of hip-hop culture with Darwin as the inspiration.


THE FAGIN EFFECT written by Michael Bloom

New Play Readings Presented by Cleveland Play House
May 12, 2012; Sat @ 4:00pm ~ Location TBD
Tickets Available March 1, 2012: Price - pay what you can; call 216-241-6000 or online

The Fagin Effect is a pastiche of Oliver Twist in which "ghosts" of the original characters are used to tell a new story that takes place in London, 1850. As entire neighborhoods are demolished to make way for the first underground railway, the appearance of a young man in the 'shop' of one Julius Fogel presents an opportunity for some of London's dregs to turn their lives around with the assistance of a real estate developer named Whitelaw.

Roe Green, Honorary Producer, arts patron and community activist, is Chief Executive Officer of the Roe Green Foundation. With a B.A. in Theatre and Communications from the University of Colorado and a Masters degree in Theatre from Kent State University, her experience in stage and business management includes Cain Park; the Cleveland Opera; and the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. Today, she is President Emeritus of CAVORT, Inc., the Conference About Volunteers of Regional Theatres; serves on the Kent State University School of Theatre and Dance Advisory Board; the Foundation Board of Kent State University; the Board of Porthouse Theatre; the Board for the Maltz Jupiter Theatre in Jupiter, Florida; and the Board of Cleveland Play House. She is responsible for the Roe Green Visiting Director Series for the School of Theatre and Dance at Kent State and the University of Colorado and the Green Arts Fund, which supports the Mandel Jewish Community Center arts and culture programs. Ms. Green recently received the 2009 State of Ohio Governor’s Award for Arts Patron.


Founded in 1915, Cleveland Play House is America’s first professional regional theatre. Throughout its rich history, Cleveland Play House has remained dedicated to its mission to inspire, stimulate and entertain diverse audiences in Northeast Ohio by producing plays and theatre education programs of the highest professional standards. It has produced more than 100 American and/or World Premieres, and over the 95+ years more than 11 million people have attended approximately 1,300 productions. Today, under the leadership of Artistic Director Michael Bloom and Managing Director Kevin Moore, Cleveland Play House looks toward its centennial while performing in three state-of-the-art venues at PlayhouseSquare in downtown Cleveland.

Cleveland Play House
is funded through the generosity of Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, and The Ohio Arts Council helps to fund Cleveland Play House with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans.

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