Speakeysie News Desk – March 9, 2023
• Newly Renovated Theatre with BRAND NEW BAR and PLAYWRIGHTS LAB •
• Announcing 5 Mainstage Shows… Including 3 ATL Premieres & 2 Classics •
• Concert Reading of our Hip Hop Musical Commission YOUNG JOHN LEWIS •
• Plus, A Continued Focus On New Work Through MADE IN ATLANTA •
ATLANTA – Theatrical Outfit (TO) is thrilled to announce its 2023 – 2024 Season of unmissable theatre created by incredible Atlanta artists, right in the heart of Downtown. After a revitalizing season that saw a major renovation (complete with a brand-new “Herren’s” bar) and the New York Premiere of FLEX, which originated as part of MADE IN ATLANTA, TO is back with another incredible lineup of performances and programs.
Artistic Director Matt Torney says: “One of our goals for the renovation was to create a home for Atlanta artists to make their best work right in the heart of our city. We have improved our rehearsal and production facilities, created a lab dedicated to making new work, and our fully renovated lobby and bar elevate the experience of seeing a show at TO. We want to capture the creative energy of our city, and offer audiences powerful, exciting, and unforgettable experiences in our theatre.”
Our Mainstage season will feature five enthralling productions including 3 Atlanta premieres and 2 dynamic reimaginings of American Classics. Kicking off this unforgettable season is the Atlanta Premiere of the Tony Award-winning musical PASSING STRANGE (Book and Lyrics by Stew • Music by Stew with Heidi Rodewald • Created in Collaboration with Annie Dorsen). Bursting with rock, blues, gospel, punk and jazz music, this deeply moving coming of age story about the search for identity and the true meaning of “home” radiates with humor, passion, and heart. An all-star Atlanta cast will take over Downtown ATL from September 27 – October 22, 2023. This holiday season, your favorite Christmas tradition comes to life live on our stage – A CHRISTMAS STORY by Philip Grecian (November 29 – December 24, 2023). Gather the entire family as Ralphie and the gang (and, of course, the famous leg lamp) attempt to survive another insane holiday season! Launching the new year, Theatrical Outfit will be partnering with The Breman Museum for the Atlanta premiere of REMEMBER THIS: THE LESSON OFJAN KARSKI by Clark Young and Derek Goldman (January 24 – February 18, 2024) starring TO favorite Andrew Benator. This stunning tour de force solo show tells the true story of polish freedom fighter Jan Karski, and his daring journey across WWII Europe to bring the first reports of the holocaust to disbelieving Western nations. Programmed to coincide with International Holocaust Remembrance Day, this extraordinary story explores the true meaning of moral courage, and the power of bearing witness to history. The Spring will see the Atlanta premiere of two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s latest smash-hit – CLYDE’S (March 13 – April 7, 2024). This hilarious and poignant Tony Award-nominated play takes a deeply personal look at what it takes to succeed in America post incarceration and will be served up with side splitting humor by an incredible ensemble cast. Closing out the season, Matt Torney will direct Atlanta legend Tess Malis Kincaid inEDWARD ALBEE’S WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF (May 15 – June 9, 2024). Albee’s masterpiece of miscommunication will crackle with fresh energy, powerful insights, and razor-sharp dialogue in one of the 20th century’s most thrilling works of theatre.
Artistic Director Matt Torney continues: “We are so proud of the range and depth of this season, which includes groundbreaking, award-winning plays, and undisputed masterpieces. We are so excited to finally bring Passing Strange to Atlanta audiences, and every show this season will offer a completely unique experience to our audience. It’s a rich and dynamic range of work, that is full of passion and insight, and offers ample opportunity to showcase incredible Atlanta artists.”
In addition to a sizzling Mainstage Season, TO will continue its commitment to new work with MADE IN ATLANTA. TO is thrilled to unveil a new home for new play development – THE PLAYWRIGHT’S LAB – which will be the premier home for new work development in Atlanta. MADE IN ATLANTAcelebrates Atlanta artists and tells the unheard stories that celebrate and challenge who we are as a city. All season long, artists will be given a space to create and learn the craft of dramatic writing, as we develop our own work, and support other amazing Atlanta companies such as WORKING TITLE PLAYWRIGHTS (with whom we’ll present another exciting UNEXPECTED PLAY FESTIVAL) and our new collaborator SHEATL ARTS. And, our very first commission – YOUNG JOHN LEWIS – will continue development. Written by hip-hop & spoken word playwright Psalmayene 24 with all original music composed by Atlanta composer Eugene H. Russell IV, YOUNG JOHN LEWIS is a hip-hop musical based on ten crucial years in the early life of the congressman, and his journey from student activist to major leader in the Civil Rights movement – all by the time he was 28. This new work asks how we grow into the courage of our convictions and offers a fresh perspective on one of the most dynamic periods in American History.
Associate Artistic Director Addae Moon shares: “As we continue the development for our hip-hop musical Young John Lewis, we will present two “work-in progress” public presentations of sections of the show to build anticipation and community investment in the play as it evolves and grows. We will also present another exciting year of the Unexpected Play Festival, our Made in Atlanta reading series, and our Rhythm & Revision program with the Boys & Girls Club moves from its pilot stage to a fully formed program this summer with plans of expanding this performance poetry and play based writing program to universities and community centers throughout the city.”
Theatrical Outfit is thrilled to continue welcoming audiences to their newly renovated theater, right in the heart of Downtown Atlanta to tell the stories that spark the conversations that matter. VIP Packages for the 2023 – 2024 Season will be on sale soon. We invite you to visit theatricaloutfit.org or call 678-528-1500 for more information.
2023 – 2024 Mainstage Season
Book and Lyrics by Stew • Music by Stew with Heidi Rodewald
Created in Collaboration with Annie Dorsen
Directed by Thomas W. Jones III
September 27 – October 22, 2023
ATLANTA PREMIERE OF A NY TIMES “CRITIC’S PICK”
WINNER: TONY AWARD FOR “BEST BOOK” • 3 DRAMA DESK AWARDS INCLUDING “BEST MUSICAL”
“FRESH, EXUBERANT, BRACINGLY INVENTIVE, BITINGLY FUNNY, AND FULL OF HEART” — The New York Times
A soulful and electrifying coming of age musical, PASSING STRANGE takes us on an odyssey in search of identity, acceptance, and the “Real”. A young man discovers his musical calling and sets off for Europe, leaving behind his mother and comfortable suburban life. In his rebellion filled with sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll, he yearns for something in life that he thinks can only be found in art. Bursting with energizing punk, blues, gospel, and jazz music, this Tony Award-winning musical radiates with humor and heart. PASSING STRANGE is by far “the freshest musical in town” (Wall Street Journal).
A CHRISTMAS STORY
by Philip Grecian
Based on the motion picture A Christmas Story, © 1983 Turner Entertainment Co., distributed by Warner Bros., written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown, and Bob Clark
And on the book In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash by Jean Shepherd
November 29 – December 24, 2023
BASED ON THE HIT HOLIDAY MOVIE
“JUST AS KINDLY AND JUST AS COCKEYED AS A CHRISTMAS STORY IS MEANT TO BE” — Orlando Sentinel
Gather the entire family for a new holiday theatrical tradition – A CHRISTMAS STORY live on stage! The world’s most famous nine-year-old – Ralphie Parker – takes us on a hysterical, hijinks-filled avalanche of adventure filled with all the trappings of a perfect family holiday – an exploding furnace, an innocent experiment with a wet tongue on a cold lamppost, a Red Ryder range bb gun with a compass in the stock, and a wild rash of theatrical fantasies not for the “fra-gee-lay” of heart. Come see this beloved Christmas story live on stage for a night filled with madcap humor, unforgettable characters, and the true warmth of the holiday season.
REMEMBER THIS: The Lesson of Jan Karski
by Clark Young and Derek Goldman
Directed by Derek Goldman
A Co-Production with the Breman Museum
January 24 – February 18, 2024
ATLANTA PREMIERE OF A NY TIMES “CRITIC’S PICK”
“TRANSFORMATIVE THEATRE … NEVER-TO-BE-FORGOTTEN” – Chicago Tribune
REMEMBER THIS: The Lesson of Jan Karski comes to Atlanta direct from an acclaimed off-Broadway and international run. This dazzling, tour de force solo performance tells the story of Jan Karski, a Polish diplomat and freedom fighter during WWII who battled his way across war-torn Europe to bring news of the Holocaust to Western governments. From the Warsaw ghetto to the Oval Office, this daring and incredible story explores how this self-described “insignificant little man” risked his life in an act of extraordinary moral courage. Starring Andrew Benator, star of last season’s hit comedy TheWhite Chip, you won’t want to miss this “soul-searing masterpiece” (Hudson Valley One).
by Lynn Nottage
Directed by January Lavoy
March 13 – April 7, 2024
WINNER: 4 DRAMA DESK AWARDS
NOMINATED: 5 TONY AWARDS, INCLUDING “BEST NEW PLAY”
“FAST-PACED AND UPROARIOUSLY FUNNY, CLYDE’S IS A SPICY FEAST FOR THE SENSES” – The Chicago Sun Times
CLYDE’S is a sweet and salty new Broadway comedy from Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage (Sweat). In the kitchen of a truck stop diner near Reading, PA, a group of formerly incarcerated cooks work together to get their shot at redemption. As their fiery boss cranks up the pressure, and a new staff member rocks the boat, they have to unite to fight back the only way they can: by making the perfect sandwich. Deeply felt, quirky, and urgent, CLYDE’Sshows Lynn Nottage’s “genius for bringing politically charged themes to life by embodying them in ordinary characters living ordinary lives” (The Wall Street Journal).
EDWARD ALBEE’S WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?
Directed by Matt Torney
May 15 – June 9, 2024
WINNER OF TONY AWARD FOR “BEST PLAY”
NOMINATED FOR PULITZER PRIZE
“AN ELECTRIC EVENING IN THE THEATRE” – The New York Times
Join us for a stunning new production of Edward Albee’s timeless masterpiece of miscommunication, starring Atlanta stage and film legend, Tess Malis Kincaid. On the campus of a small New England college, George and Martha invite a new professor and his wife home for a nightcap. As the cocktails flow, the young couple find themselves caught in the crossfire of a savage battle of wits and wills. With some of the best dialogue ever written for the stage, this unforgettable, dark, and hilarious play is a timeless exploration of human relationships, power dynamics, and the search for truth in a world of illusion.