Tag Archives: Actors Theatre

Actors Theatre finds a home for 2014-15 season

Actors Theatre will stage four Arizona premieres, three by women playwrights, during the 2014-15 season.  All shows will be performed at the Helen K. Mason Performing Arts Center at Black Theatre Troupe ending Actors Theatre’s nomadic venture at different Valley venues during 2013-14.

“After being nomadic last season, we’re excited to do our entire season at Black Theatre Troupe,” said Actors Theatre Artistic Director Matthew Wiener.  “These four energetic and entertaining shows are going to bring a lot of joy to our audiences.  These plays, from four amazing writers, are some of the newest and most powerful writing for theatre today.  They are stories that matter.”

The season opens with Theresa Rebeck’s Seminar, Oct. 24-Nov. 9.  This provocative comedy from Pulitzer Prize nominee Rebeck follows four aspiring young novelists who sign up for private writing classes with Leonard, an international literary figure.  Under his recklessly brilliant and unorthodox instruction, some thrive and others flounder, allegiances are made and broken, sex is used as a weapon and hearts are unmoored.  The wordplay is not the only thing that turns vicious as innocence collides with experience in this biting Broadway comedy.

Annapurna by Sharr White follows from Jan. 16-Feb. 1, 2015.  After 20 years apart, Emma tracks Ulysses to a trailer park in the middle of nowhere for a final reckoning.  What unfolds is a visceral and profound meditation on love and loss with the simplest of theatrical elements:  two people in one room.  A breathtaking story about the longevity of love.

Stage Kiss by Sara Ruhl is the third play of the season, March 13-29, and is the third Ruhl play produced by Actors Theatre after Dead Man’s Cell Phone and In the Next Room (Or the Vibrator Play).  It’s a story of art imitating life and life imitating art when two actors with history are thrown together as romantic leads in a forgotten 1930s melodrama.  The two quickly lose touch with reality as the story onstage follows them off stage.  Stage Kiss captures Ruhl’s singular voice and is a charming tale about what happens when lovers share a stage kiss – or when actors share a real one.

The final production is The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion, May XX-17, a dramatic adaptation of her award-winning best-selling memoir which the New York Times called “an indelible portrait of a four-decade-long marriage.”  In The Year of Magical Thinking, Didion transforms the story of the sudden and unexpected loss of her husband and their only daughter into a stunning and powerful one-woman play.

Season tickets go on sale beginning Aug. 1. Actors Theatre is offering a variety of season-ticket packages ranging from $108-$170. All tickets can be purchased online at www.actorstheatrephx.org.


Gertsman Elected Actors Theatre Board President

Renee Gertsman, a partner with Jaburg Wilk, has been elected President of the Actors Theatre Board of Directors for the 2013-14 season, which begins Oct. 25 with A Steady Rain.

Gertsman will be joined on the executive committee by William Allison, vice president, an attorney with Gallagher & Kennedy; Cathiey Lanier Lemon, secretary, a community volunteer; Sara Gordon, senior vice president, J.P. Morgan Chase; and Oonagh Boppart, past president, a community volunteer.

“With our recent pause nearing an end, our new board leadership is prepared to guide a refreshed and refocused Actors Theatre back to audiences that are open to boldly experiencing the world from new perspectives through theatre that is powerful and talk-provoking,” said Managing Director Erica Black.

In February, Actors Theatre announced it was “taking a pause” to redesign its business model and consider future plans that included leaving the Herberger Theater Center as a resident company after more than 20 years.

“This is an exciting time for Actors Theatre and contemporary theatre in the Valley,” Gertsman said.  “The board and artistic management took a very brave step in pulling back to rethink and redesign and we’re all very anxious to experience the outcome of this new strategic direction.”

A Steady Rain will run through Nov. 10 at Playhouse on the Park at the Viad Corporate Center (box office: 602-888-0368), 1850 N. Central Ave.  Tickets are $20-$45 and are on sale at www.actorstheatrephx.org.

A Steady Rain is the first of four plays Actors Theatre will stage during the 2013-14 season.  Good People will run from April 26-May 11 at a venue that will be announced later this year.  Two others will run from Jan. 10-26 and June 7-22.  The names and venues also will be announced later this year.

For more information, visit www.actorstheatrephx.org.


Actors Theatre Awarded $30K Shubert Foundation Grant

Actors Theatre moved several steps closer to ending its “pause” following a successful annual fund outreach campaign combined with the awarding of a $30,000 Shubert Foundation grant for general operations.
The Shubert Foundation, whose focus is to sustain and advance live performing arts in the US, has funded Actors Theatre consistently since 2001.

Actors Theatre closed out its fiscal year 2013 annual fund effort with donations of $54,000 from more than 200 donors in June alone.  The year-long outreach brought in contributions from a total of 1,391 donors.

“As we make our way back from our ‘pause,’ support from an organization like the Shubert Foundation brings with it a level of acknowledgement that we’re on the right track.  We also received many comments from donors who shared that support and enthusiasm for our strategic rebuilding of the company,” said Producing Artistic Director Matthew Wiener.  “They also told us how much they missed our programming.  We’ll be filling that void shortly.”

The New York City-based Shubert Foundation provides general operating support to nonprofit professional resident theatre and dance companies as well as to support the development of other arts-related organizations.

In April, Actors Theatre announced that A Steady Rain will open the 2013-14 season from Oct. 25 to Nov. 10 at the Playhouse in the Park at the Viad Corporate Center.  Ticket information is available at www.actorstheatrephx.org.  Performance dates are being finalized for Good People and the remaining two shows are being determined.  Tickets will go on sale once all details are in place.

To support Actors Theatre with a donation or for more information, visit www.actorstheatrephx.org.