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Cleveland Play House’s 2016 New Ground Theatre Festival Includes World Premiere of The Good Peaches

Posted March 21, 2016 in Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media contact:

Kelly Luecke

KellyLuecke@yahoo.com

(216) 712-6292

Cleveland Play House’s 2016 New Ground Theatre Festival

Includes World Premiere of

The Good Peaches,

CPH’s Collaboration with The Cleveland Orchestra

Written by Pulitzer Prize Winner Quiara Alegría Hudes

Festival to Commence with Mr. Wolf by Cleveland Native Rajiv Joseph

CLEVELAND, OH (March 21, 2016) Cleveland Play House’s New Ground Theatre Festival (NGTF) is breaking new ground once again, with four extraordinary works by some of America’s hottest playwrights. NGTF is Cleveland Play House’s (CPH) annual showcase of new theatrical works, where nationally-recognized artists present a variety of new work ranging from fully-produced large-scale collaborations, to solo performances, to readings of plays hot off the writer's printer. Running April 14 – 23, NGTF will also continue its tradition of honoring one outstanding individual in the achievement of playwriting. Through the Roe Green Award, made possible by the generosity of its namesake and Honorary NGTF Producer Roe Green, one leading American playwright is invited to CPH to develop a new project culminating in a free conversation with the playwright and a public reading of the script. This year’s recipient of the Roe Green Award is Kirsten Greenidge. A reading of her new play Little Row Boat Or, Conjecture will take place on April 23 at 5:00 p.m.

NGTF will open with its centerpiece production, Mr. Wolf, an intense and compelling drama about faith, hope and healing, written by Cleveland native Rajiv Joseph (Pulitzer Prize finalist for Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, and co-screenwriter of the 2014 Cleveland-based film Draft Day.) This will be followed by the world premiere production of The Good Peaches, commissioned by CPH and written by Pulitzer Prize winner Quiara Alegría Hudes, in collaboration with The Cleveland Orchestra. Rounding out the Festival will be a new play reading of Feed. Written by Cleveland’s own Eric Coble (Fairfield, and Broadway’s The Velocity of Autumn), Feed is a wild adaptation of M.T. Anderson's award-winning novel.

“This year’s New Ground festival takes us around the world to reimagine the past and dream about the future” states CPH Artistic Director Laura Kepley. “Set in an ancient world, in Paris, on the moon, and right here at home, the plays are ripe with imagination. It is a bold, inventive, and provocative line-up featuring top national talent and local favorites.”

CPH is grateful to NGTF sponsor Ohio Savings Bank, a Division of New York Community Bank. CPH would also like to thank its generous season sponsors including Centennial Season Sponsor KeyBank, Centennial Community Outreach Sponsor Dominion, the George Gund Foundation, and the Cleveland Foundation for their generous support of the Centennial Season.

Roe Green Award

Each year, the Roe Green Award is awarded to a nationally-recognized playwright for outstanding achievement in playwriting. The award includes a $7,500 cash prize; a week-long residency including rehearsals; and a public reading of a new play. This year’s winner is Kirsten Greenidge. A reading of her play Little Row Boat Or, Conjecture will take place on April 23 at 5:00 p.m.

Greenidge’s work combines elements of magical realism with a pronounced use of language: the result being a body of plays that possess a heightened sense of realism as they explore how race, class and culture intersect in the United States. An OBIE Award winner (Milk Like Sugar), Kirsten is a recent PEN/America Laura Pels Foundation Theater Award for Mid-Career Playwright recipient. In addition to Milk Like Sugar (La Jolla Playhouse, Theater Masters, Playwrights Horizons, and Women’s Theater Project, and winner of a San Diego Critic’s Award, a Lucille Lortel Nomination, and a AUDELCO nomination, as well as a New Yorker Year’s Best), Kirsten’s other work includes Baltimore, which is a Big Ten Theatre Consortium Commission, The Luck of the Irish (Huntington Theater Company, LCT3), Bossa Nova (Yale Rep), Rust (Magic Theater), Sans-Culottes in the Promised Land (Humana Festival and Actor’s Theater of Louisville), and Familiar (Kennedy Center/American College Theater Festival Lorraine Hansberry Award winner). Kirsten is currently working on commissions from Oregon Shakespeare Festival/American Revolutions (Roll Belinda Roll), Yale Rep (Little Row Boat), Lincoln Center Theater (Tongue Tied Tight, and Delivered), La Jolla Playhouse (To The Quick), ArtsEmerson (a revisiting of J. Anthony Lukas’ Common Ground with Melia Bensussen), The Goodman (And Moira Spins), the Kennedy Center (an adaptation of Christopher Paul Curtis’ Bud, Not Buddy), The Huntington Theater (The View from Here), and Playwrights Horizons. She has enjoyed development experiences at Denver Center Theater (Zenith), XXPlaylabs/Company One and Boston Center for the Arts (Splendor), Sundance Theater Lab (Bossa Nova), P73, Sundance at Ucross, The Playwright’s Foundation, The O’Neill, A.S.K., McCarter, Pacific Playwrights, National New Play Network, Playtime at New Dramatists, Hourglass, Madison Rep, and Cardinal Stages. Short plays by Kirsten include Proclivities, Devil Must Be Deep, numerous one minute plays included in the One Minute Play Festivals, and two short gospel plays “Transfiguration” and “Ascension”, which were presented as part of The Mysteries at The Flea, directed by Ed Iskandar. Kirsten is a two time Edgerton New American Play Award winner, a New England Theater Conference Major Award winner, an NEA/TCG Residency recipient (at Woolly Mammoth), a Lorraine Hansberry Award winner, a Mark Cohen Award winner, a two time IRNE award winner, and a Sundance/Time Warner grant recipient. An alumna of New Dramatists, and Rhombus Writer’s Group Core Member, Kirsten attended Wesleyan University (where she studied under Darrah Cloud) and the Playwright’s Workshop at the University of Iowa, (where she studied with Naomi Iizuka, Erik Ehn, Sydne Mahone, Dare Clubb, and Art Borrecca) as a Barry Kemp Fellow. Kirsten is currently Assistant Professor of Theater at Boston University’s School of Theater, where she oversees the undergraduate playwriting course of study.

ROE GREEN (Honorary Producer) is an arts patron, community activist and chief executive officer of the Roe Green Foundation. With a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Communications from the University of Colorado and a Master’s degree in Theatre from Kent State University, her experience in stage and business management includes Cain Park, Cleveland Opera and 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 of 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. Ms. Green has received numerous awards for her support of the arts and new play development including the State of Ohio Governor’s Award for Arts Patron (2009); the Dramatist Guild’s Patron of the Arts Award (2013); and the Muse Award from the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County (2014). In 2013, she received the CPH Centennial Star Award that recognizes select individuals who have made special and important contributions to CPH’s rich legacy of artistic and educational programming. She is the first recipient of the CPH Super Nova Award (2015) in recognition of her leadership and generosity which has been instrumental in elevating CPH’s presentation of new works through the New Ground Theatre Festival. 2016 marks the fifth year of the Roe Green Award at CPH, which recognizes a playwright and the development of a new work.

NEW GROUND THEATRE FESTIVAL 2016

Mr. Wolf

April 2 – 24, 2016 • Outcalt Theatre

Written by Rajiv Joseph

Directed by Giovanna Sardelli

Mr. Wolf is a haunting tale of adaptation and survival. In this new psychological mystery, a determined man believes the girl he has raised is a prophet, and her estranged family attempts to reconnect, heal, and rebuild their world.

The Good Peaches

WORLD PREMIERE

April 14 - 16, 2016 • Allen Theatre

Written by Quiara Alegría Hudes

Directed by Laura Kepley

Conducted by Brett Mitchell

Aurora’s task is simple: deliver a wedding dress to the queen. But when an unexpected storm hits, the young girl finds herself on an adventure beyond her wildest imagination. Music and theater will collide through the bursting swells of a massive storm and in an extraordinary teaming of actors and chamber orchestra. Set amongst the stirring melodies of Benjamin Britten and John Adams, The Good Peaches combines a compelling drama of survival with live music performed by our own world-class orchestra.

JUST ANNOUNCED: Casting for The Good Peaches will be as follows:

Cast:

Irene Bedard (Mother)

Lizan Mitchell (Elder)

Yumi Ndhlovu (Aurora)

*Yumi will be sharing the stage with her grandmother, Yoko Moore: Assistant Concertmaster with The Cleveland Orchestra.

To view complete cast and artistic team bios, please visit: http://www.clevelandplayhouse.com/shows/2015/the-good-peaches

Behind the Scenes: A Conversation with Kirsten Greenidge, the 2016 Roe Green Winner

April 23 at 1:00 p.m. • Allen Theatre Lobby

Named for New Ground Theatre Festival Honorary Producer, Roe Green, the annual Roe Green Award brings the country’s best playwrights to Cleveland to develop new work. Join this year’s winner Kirsten Greenidge and CPH Artistic Director Laura Kepley for an intimate and insightful discussion with this acclaimed playwright.

Feed

PLAY READING

April 23 at 2:30 p.m. • The Helen

Written by Eric Coble

Based on the novel by M.T. Anderson

Directed by Pamela DiPasquale

Commissioned by Cleveland Play House

Synopsis: Titus is a typical American teenager in the not-distant-enough future. He attends SchoolTM, parties with his friends on weekend trips to the moon and, like everyone else, gets all he needs from the Feed - an implant streaming the internet directly into his brain. Titus has never questioned being told what to think, feel, and buy until he falls for Violet, an awkward rebel who challenges him to resist the Feed. Commissioned by CPH and penned by Cleveland playwright Eric Coble, Feed is a wild adaptation of M.T. Anderson's award-winning novel of first love and the fight for authenticity in a brave - and consumer friendly! - new world.

Little Row Boat Or, Conjecture

PLAY READING

April 23 at 5:00 • The Helen

Written by Kirsten Greenidge

As the French Revolution brews outside, teenage slave Sally Hemings gets her first taste of freedom while serving in Thomas Jefferson’s Paris home. Inside, she becomes involved in one of the most speculated about and scandalous relationships in American history. With verve, humor, and music, playwright Kirsten Greenidge imagines how events unfolded in the Jefferson household for the family and "servants" alike. Little Row Boat is a visceral and intricate story of convictions, contradictions, and sacrifice in the pursuit of liberty.

Special Pre- and Post-Festival Performances and Events

Saturday, April 2

11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Behind-the-Scenes: A Visit with Mr. Wolf Playwright Rajiv Joseph | Allen Theatre Lobby

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Sunday, April 3

6:30 - 8:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Tuesday, April 5

7:00 - 9:00 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Wednesday, April 6

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Thursday, April 7

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Friday, April 8

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Saturday, April 9

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Sunday, April 10

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

4:30 – 5:00 p.m. Talkback: Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Tuesday, April 12

7:00 - 9:00 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

9:00 – 9:30 p.m. Talkback: Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Wednesday, April 13

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Sunday, April 24

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

New Ground Theatre Festival Schedule:

Thursday, April 14

1:30 - 3:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm The Good Peaches | Allen Theatre

Friday, April 15

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm The Good Peaches | Allen Theatre

Saturday, April 16

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

7:30 - 9:30 pm The Good Peaches | Allen Theatre

Sunday, April 17

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

4:30 – 5:00 p.m. Talkback: Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Tuesday, April 19

7:00 - 9:00 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Wednesday, April 20

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Thursday, April 21

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Friday, April 22

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Saturday, April 23

1:00 – 2:15 p.m. Behind the Scenes: A Conversation with the 2016 Roe Green Winner | Allen Theatre Lobby

2:30 - 4:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

2:30 – 4:00 p.m. Feed | The Helen

5:00 – 6:30 p.m. Little Row Boat Or, Conjecture | The Helen

7:30 - 9:30 pm Mr. Wolf | Outcalt Theatre

Ticket & Multiple-Show Discount Pricing Information

CPH’s New Ground Theatre Festival will take place April 14 – 23, 2016. Ticket prices for each show vary. Tickets range in price from $10 – $59 each. CPH subscribers will receive $10 off regular ticket prices. To order single tickets please call 216-241-6000 or visit www.clevelandplayhouse.com. Groups of 10+ save up to 40% off single ticket prices; call 216-400-7027.

Cleveland Play House, recipient of the 2015 Regional Theatre Tony Award and founded in 1915, is America's first professional regional theatre. Throughout its rich history, CPH 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. CPH has produced more than 100 world and/or American premieres, and over its long history more than 12 million people have attended over 1,600 productions. Today, Cleveland Play House celebrates its centennial while performing in three state-of-the art venues at Playhouse Square in downtown Cleveland.

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

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