Attracting theatrelovers from across the country, TheatreWorks’ New Works Festival is the artistic highlight of the summer. An extraordinary opportunity to experience new plays and musicals in their early stages of development, the Festival has launched many new works onto TheatreWorks’ mainstage and on to productions nationally. The acclaimed Fly By Night and Emma came to life in the Festival, as did Broadway’s Memphis, off-Broadway’s hit Striking 12, the off-Broadway play Equivocation, winner of the 2009 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award, and The North Pool, winner of the Will Glickman Award for Best New Play to Premiere in the Bay Area in 2011.
Check out our lineup for the 15th Annual New Works Festival:
By Rajiv Joseph
Directed by Giovanna Sardelli
Can one man, one moment, define a century? Pulitzer Prize finalist Rajiv Joseph explores the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, 1914—the flash that lit the fuse of World War I.
Rajiv Joseph is the author of the Broadway play Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, a 2010 Pulitzer Prize finalist for Drama. His other plays include Guards at the Taj (recipient of the 2016 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Play), The North Pool (TheatreWorks 2011), Gruesome Playground Injuries, Animals Out of Paper, and The Lake Effect (TheatreWorks 2015).
The Four Immigrants: An American Musical Manga
Book, Music, & Lyrics by Min Kahng
Based on Manga Yonin Shosei by Henry Yoshitaka Kiyama
Translated as The Four Immigrants by Frederik L. Schodt
Directed by Leslie Martinson
In a comic musical drawn from one of the first graphic novels ever created, four endearing Japanese immigrants discover turn-of-the-twentieth-century America as a world of both possibility and prejudice. Can they succeed with limited options in the land of opportunity?
Min Kahng is a Bay Area playwright and composer whose recent works include Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, Bad Kitty On Stage, and The Song of the Nightingale. He is a Resident Playwright with Playwrights Foundation and received the 2014 Titan Award for Playwrights. http://www.minkahng.com
I Enter the Valley
By Dipika Guha
Directed by Kirsten Brandt
Augusto has loved, must love. Now in the twilight of life, the famous poet gathers lovers like birds, each with gifts to give, memories to take, dreams to share. But who will remain when summer ends? Inspired by the life of Pablo Neruda.
Dipika Guha had two Bay Area premieres this spring: Mechanics of Love at Crowded Fire and The Rules at SF Playhouse. The Art of Gaman was developed by Ground Floor at Berkeley Rep. She is currently under commission from Oregon Shakespeare Festival, South Coast Rep, and Playwrights Horizons Theatre School. MFA: Yale School of Drama under Paula Vogel. http://www.dipikaguha.com
Eddie the Marvelous, Who Will Save the World
Book, Music, and Lyrics by Kate Kilbane and Dan Moses
Eddie the Marvelous fronts a band, struts the stage, saves the world. Eddie the Real can’t leave the house, can’t hold a job, can’t keep a friend. His mom makes every sacrifice, but when she finds a new man, neither Eddie knows what to say or what to sing.
The Kilbanes, a theatrical rock band led by married songwriting duo Kate Kilbane and Dan Moses, are the authors of Weightless (won “Best of Fringe” at the SF Fringe Festival in 2012) and the medea cycle (2010). Eddie the Marvelous got its start at Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor in 2014. http://www.kilbanes.com
Something Wicked This Way Comes
Based on the novel by Ray Bradbury
Music & Lyrics by Neil Bartram
Book by Brian Hill
Directed by Brian Hill
1938. A tiny town. A mysterious carnival. A time-traveling carousel. Freaks and fireworks, lingering memories. And two boys bent on escaping the midway of life to find adventure, and themselves. Look there! In the dark—a tuneful, tantalizing musical parable for all ages and all time.
Neil Bartram – Music & Lyrics BROADWAY: The Story of My Life (four Drama Desk Award nominations). REGIONAL: Chicago Shakespeare Theater: The Adventures of Pinocchio; Goodspeed: The Story of My Life, The Theory of Relativity. UPCOMING: You Are Here (Acting Up Stage Company) Senza Luce (CMTP); Bedknobs & Broomsticks (Chicago Shakespeare Theater). CAST ALBUMS: The Story of My Life (PS Classics), The Theory of Relativity (PS Classics).
Brian Hill – Book BROADWAY: The Story of My Life (four Drama Desk Award nominations), The Little Mermaid (associate director), The Lion King (resident director). REGIONAL: Goodman Theatre: Brigadoon (revised book); Chicago Shakespeare Theater: The Adventures of Pinocchio; Goodspeed Musicals: The Story of My Life, The Theory of Relativity; UPCOMING: You Are Here (Acting Up Stage & Signature Theater), Senza Luce (CMTP), Bedknobs & Broomsticks (Chicago Shakespeare Theater).
A NEXT GENERATION EVENT
A Newtonian Musical
Created by Joel Chapman, Weston Gaylord, Matt Herrero, Jessia Hoffman, and Ken Savage
Modern day physicist Sophie travels back in time to 1666, meeting young Isaac Newton but upsetting the applecart of history in the process. An original comedy with a fresh, contemporary score, Gravity is a delightful tale of romance, feminism, and the art of science.
Gravity co-creators Joel Chapman, Weston Gaylord, Matt Herrero, Jessia Hoffman, and Ken Savage are artists and friends from their time working together on various musical projects at Stanford University. Since winning the Stanford Arts’ 72-Hour Musical competition in January 2015, they have developed their Newtonian musical with support from Stanford Arts, Z Space, and Encore Theatre Company.