Wednesday, April 3, 2013

New Route Announces Provocative New Season

New Route Theatre has announced a line-up of ambitious and provocative shows for their 2013-14 season. Artistic Director Don Shandrow sent out the list this morning, including work by four Pulitzer Prize winners and one local playwright. Plays range from the well-known, like August Wilson's Fences and Lynn Nottage's Ruined, both Pulitzer Prize winners, to new work like F2M from Patricia Wettig and Hostage, written by Illinois State University Professor Kim Pereira.

Here's what you'll see coming from New Route beginning this May:

Dael Orlandersmith
The Gimmick by Dael Orlandersmith
May 10-19
Directed by Don Shandrow
This moving play, by the Pulitzer Prize winning playwright of Yellowman, tells the story of Alexis, an intelligent girl whose life is complicated by her alcoholic mother and impoverished neighborhood. Only a librarian with a love of words can open a window of hope for Alexis, hope for something beyond the world of “gimmicks” that plague her neighborhood.

Patricia Wettig
F2M by Patricia Wettig
June 13-22
Directed by Irene Taylor
Parker, a transgender freshman college student, is confronted by his parents during an unexpected visit. This new play by Patricia Wettig, primarily recognized for her acting roles in "30 Something" and "Brothers and Sisters," is a funny and poignant look at identity, parenting and making choices.

Lynn Nottage
Ruined by Lynn Nottage
August 2-11
Directed by Don Shandrow
This 2009 Pulitzer Prize winning play is a powerful portrayal of the triumph of human spirit in a war-torn country. Guided by music and the rhythm of life in the Congo, Ruined transports us to Mama Nadi’s bar, a small town refuge where intimacy comes at a price. This remarkable story is rich with humor, hope and humanity as it expertly navigates relationships, politics and the resiliency of the female spirit.

Kim Pereira
Hostage by Kim Pereira
September 12-21
Directed by Heidi Harris
An American journalist is captured by an Arab in the Middle East. What starts as a stereotypical situation takes a few unexpected turns as both men are forced to confront some difficult truths about themselves and each other... and the strange roles they will play in each other's lives. A Semi-finalist for the O'Neill Center National Playwrights Conference.

August Wilson
Fences by August Wilson
November 1-10
Directed by Kim Pereira
The 1950s ushered in a new era for blacks in America. The complex rhythms of be-bop and cool jazz reflected a changing country in which African-Americans began to stake a claim. Fences is the story of Troy Maxson, a baseball player trapped between two worlds -- not just between blacks and whites but between his frustration of the past and his suspicion of the future.

Quiara Alegría Hudes
Elliot, a Soldier's Fugue by Quiara Alegría Hudes
February 14-23
This 2007 Pulitzer Prize Finalist in Drama tells the interwoven story of four Puerto Rican family members who represent three generations of military service. Elliot, the son, returns home a wounded hero from Iraq, While on leave, Elliot learns the stories of his father and grandfather who served in Korea and Vietnam before him. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution called the play "A lush and evocative tone poem about the way the landscape of the soul is transformed by war."

New Route's shows are performed at the YWCA of McLean County, located at 1201 North Hershey Road in Bloomington. Friday and Saturday performances are scheduled for 7:30 pm, with Sunday matinees at 2:30 pm. You may reserve tickets in advance by e-mailing or by calling 309-827-7330. For more information about New Route and its new season, check out their Facebook page.

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