KC Rep Announces Monday Night Playwright Series


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KC Rep announces a fantastic line-up of new play readings in our OriginKC Monday Night Playwright Series.  The events are free of charge and open to the public. Featuring top local and national playwrights, the Monday Night Playwright Series offers script-in-hand readings of new plays on their journey to becoming future hit shows. Step into the world of a new play as it’s built, and meet the playwrights whose work electrifies stages across the country.

 Featuring Kansas City heavy hitters, KC Rep’s Resident Playwright Nathan Louis Jackson and Frank Higgins, in addition to the nationally acclaimed playwrights Carey Perloff and Heather Raffo, the Monday Night Playwright Series offers a relevant, muscular body of new plays.  The OriginKC new works program gives playwrights the financial, creative, and artistic resources required to develop vital, diverse, theatrical work.  This fall, the Rep will also host playwrights Larissa FastHorse (What Would Crazy Horse Do?) and Christina Anderson (Man in Love) for in-house workshops as they continue their revision process towards their world premiere productions in the 2017 OriginKC New Works Festival.

There’s something electrifying about experiencing the bare bones of a play – just actors and text.  I love welcoming audiences to engage with early drafts of scripts, listening to the text come alive, and giving feedback in our post-reading conversations, said Marissa Wolf, Director of New Works for KC Rep.

It’s been a longstanding dream to make a home at the Rep for top playwrights across the country,” added Eric Rosen, Artistic Director.

All events are free and open to the public. Seats are limited, so reserve your ticket now.

All events take place in the Spencer Theatre donor lounge (4949 Cherry St, Kansas City, MO).  Go to kcrep.com/new-works-2016 to make your reservations today!

Louie Louie and La Dolce Vita

Monday Oct. 24, 2016   7PM

By Frank Higgins

Directed by Marissa Wolf

One of Kansas City’s most renowned playwrights, Frank Higgins, brings us a surprising love story inspired by the actual FBI investigation of the rock and roll song, Louie Louie. 


Sunday Oct. 30, 2016  3PM

By Heather Raffo

Directed by Joan Settle

 Internationally acclaimed performer and playwright Heather Raffo (Nine Parts of Desire), brings us a powerful reimagining of A Doll’s House, in which a Christian Iraqi immigrant family hold tightly to strained bonds one Christmas. 

Brother Toad

Monday Nov. 7, 2016  7PM

By Nathan Louis Jackson

 Mellon Foundation Resident Playwright, Nathan Louis Jackson (Sticky Traps, Broke-ology, When I Come To Die), brings us an arresting new play about two families’ answers to gun violence in Kansas City.

 The Fit

Monday Dec. 12, 2016  7PM

By Carey Perloff

Directed by Casey Stangl

 Playwright and A.C.T. artistic director luminary, Carey Perloff (Kinship starring Cynthia Nixon), brings us the hilarious and chilling world of a Silicon Valley venture capital firm whose star player, Sakina, must wage a daily battle to have her voice heard

 Playwright Slam

Monday Jan. 9, 2017  7PM

 The Playwright Slam brings together Kansas City’s artistic community for a night of theater revelry in which everyone is invited to participate.  The public is invited to bring a 1-3 page script that will be read out loud by actors chosen from the audience. Theme to be announced.

 Final MNPS readings on February 13 and March 13 will be announced shortly

  About the Artists

Frank Higgins (Playwright).  Frank Higgins is the author of a number of plays, including Black Pearl Sings which became one of the most produced plays in the U.S., and The Sweet By ‘n’ By, which was produced with Tony winner Blythe Danner and future-Oscar winner Gwyneth Paltrow.   His work has been seen in New York and across the country at the Williamstown Theater Festival, the Old Globe Theatre, Ford’s Theater in Washington DC, Northlight Theatre in Chicago, San Jose Repertory Theatre, Kansas City Repertory Theater, Virginia Stage Company, the Barter Theater, and other places. His plays have been published by Dramatists Play Service, Samuel French, Dramatic Publishing Company, and Pioneer Drama Service. His one act play The True Death of Socrates is included in Best American Short Plays, published by Applause Books, and Black Pearl Sings is anthologized in the Random House/Vintage anthology Plays For Two. Scenes from his play Gunplay were read on Capitol Hill prior to Congress passing what came to be known as the Brady Bill. He has also written several plays for young audiences, including Anansi the Spider and The Middle Passage and The Country of the Blind. He has also published two books of poetry, and two books of haiku.

Heather Raffo (Playwright).  Heather Raffo is an award-winning Iraqi-American playwright and actress who has spent the last decade performing off Broadway, off West End in regional theater and in film.  She is the author and solo performer of the play 9 Parts of Desire (Lucielle Lortel and Susan Smith Blackburn awards, Drama League, OCC, Helen Hayes nominations), which The New Yorker called “an example of how art can remake the world”.  The play ran off Broadway for nine months and has played across the U.S. and internationally over the last ten years. In 2009, Heather created a concert version of the play for The Kennedy Center’s Arabesque Festival with renowned Iraqi maqam musician, Amir ElSaffar.

In November, 2016 New York City Opera will present Raffo’s opera Fallujah, detailing the return of a US Marine who served in the Iraqi city in 2004.   Her libretto for the opera was developed as part of Kennedy Center’s International Theater Festival and through City Opera Vancouver.

Raffo is the recipient of two grants from the Doris Duke Foundation to work in Universities across America and with the Arab American community of New York using theater as a means of bridge building between her Eastern and Western cultures. Through this grant she has developed a storytelling workshop, Places of Pilgrimage, focusing on the Middle Eastern female narrative, which she has taken to universities and community centers both in America and in the Middle East.  Her newest play, NOURA, a re-imaging of Ibsen’s Doll’s House came out of her three years of work within these communities and tells the story of an Iraqi refugee family living in New York.   www.heatherraffo.com

Nathan Jackson (Playwright).  Nathan Jackson is an alum of Kansas State University and did his graduate work at The Juilliard School. His plays include Broke-ologyWhen I Come to Die (world premiere, Lincoln Center in 2011), The Mancherios, The Last Black Play, and Sticky Traps (world premiere, KC Rep 2015). He has received commissions from Lincoln Center, The Roundabout Theater Company, and Manhattan Theatre Club. At K-State, he was actively involved with the Ebony Theatre (as a director and as president) and participated in The Kennedy Center Summer Playwriting Intensive. He has twice won the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award, is the recipient of the Mark Twain Comedy Playwriting Award, and was awarded the Kennedy Center’s Gold Medallion. This summer Nathan will be workshopping a new play at Lincoln Center. The 16/17 season kicks off the renewal of his three-year residency at the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, where three of his plays have been produced. He has written for television as well, with credits for Southland (NBC), and Shameless (Showtime), and Resurrection (ABC).  He is currently writing for Luke Cage and 13 Reasons Why (Netflix).

Carey Perloff (Playwright).  Carey Perloff is celebrating her 24th season as artistic director of A.C.T. Last season, she staged the New York premiere of Tom Stoppard’s Indian Ink at Roundabout Theatre Company (nominated for a Lucille Lortel Award for Best Revival) before bringing the show to A.C.T. Recent A.C.T. productions also include TestamentUnderneath the Lintel, ArcadiaElektra (coproduced by the Getty Villa in Malibu), Endgame and PlayScorchedThe HomecomingTosca Café (co-created with choreographer Val Caniparoli; toured Canada), and Racine’s Phèdre in a coproduction with the Stratford Festival. Known for directing innovative productions of classics and championing new writing for the theater, Perloff has also directed for A.C.T. José Rivera’s Boleros for the Disenchanted; the world premieres of Philip Kan Gotanda’s After the War (A.C.T. commission) and her own adaptation (with Paul Walsh) of A Christmas Carol; the American premieres of Tom Stoppard’s The Invention of Love and Indian Ink, and Harold Pinter’s Celebration.

Perloff is also an award-winning playwright. Her play Kinship premiered at the Théâtre de Paris in October 2014 in a production starring Isabelle Adjani and Niels Schneider and was produced at the Williamstown Theater Festival last summer, starring Cynthia Nixon and directed by Jo Bonney. Waiting for the Flood has received workshops at A.C.T., New York Stage and Film, and Roundabout Theatre. Higher was developed at New York Stage and Film, won the 2011 Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation Theatre Visions Fund Award, and received its world premiere in February 2012 in San Francisco. Luminescence Dating premiered in New York at The Ensemble Studio Theatre, was coproduced by A.C.T. and Magic Theatre, and is published by Dramatists Play Service. The Colossus of Rhodes was workshopped at the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, premiered at Lucille Lortel’s White Barn Theatre, and was produced at A.C.T. in 2003.

General KC Rep Information

About Kansas City Repertory Theatre

Kansas City Repertory Theatre, one of the oldest and most respected regional theaters, is the center of a great theatre town. KC Rep produces theatrical excellence, creating and sharing stories at the center of our nation’s creative crossroads. KC Rep’s mission is to advance the art form while cultivating passionate audiences, artists, and advocates to invest in our region’s creative future. We build community by connecting people through productions and outreach that educate, entertain, challenge and inspire. Lauded by The Wall Street Journal, TIME magazine, Variety and The Toronto Sun, KC Rep produces mainstage plays and special events at Spencer Theatre, where it serves as the professional theatre in residence at the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), and Copaken Stage located in downtown Kansas City. KC Rep employs more than 250 professional artists, technicians and administrators, and serves more than 100,000 patrons and 12,000 school children annually. Kansas City Repertory Theatre is led by Artistic Director Eric Rosen and Executive Director Angela Lee Gieras.

Social and Digital Media

Receive daily updates by ‘Liking’ KCRep’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/KCREP

And follow KC Rep on Twitter at @KCRep, on YouTube by visiting: https://www.youtube.com/user/kansascityrep, and follow on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/kcreptheatre/.  High resolution photos can be downloaded here. B-roll is available upon request.

The 2016-2017 Season Continues

Kansas City Repertory Theatre

Kansas City Repertory Theatre ticket office 816.235.2700

Purchase tickets online at www.kcrep.org.

The Invisible Hand

Kansas City premiere

Written by Ayad Akhtar

Directed by Jerry Genochio

Copaken Stage
October 14 – November 13, 2016

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and author of Disgraced and The Who & The What, Ayad Akhtar, takes us on a thrill ride with The Invisible Hand.  Forget what you know about global terrorism and human nature, and prepare for a new perspective that’s equally frightening and enlightening.  Like a game of chess, two captors and their American hostage maneuver through life in a holding cell, where the hostage tries to negotiate his way out using stock market secrets. This intense show reveals the complicated truth behind our simple perceptions of good versus evil, as we discover the invisible hand that moves the global market and shifts the power to those you least want to have it.


A Christmas Carol
Based on the book by Charles Dickens
Adapted by Barbara Fields
Directed by Jerry Genochio

Spencer Theatre
November 18– December 24, 2016

Kansas City’s favorite holiday tradition is back for its 36th season, presented in the magnificent new Spencer Theatre! A ripping good telling of the classic story of Ebenezer Scrooge, the curmudgeonly businessman who requires the intervention of a few spectral guides to understand the true meaning of Christmas and life. Complete with lively musical numbers, ornate costumes, and dashing stagecraft, Dickens’ classic tale of hope and redemption continues to remind us what’s really worth celebrating – at the holidays, or any time!

The Santaland Diaries
Written by David Sedaris
Adapted for the stage by Joe Mantello

Directed by Eric Rosen

Copaken Stage
December 8 – 24, 2016

David Sedaris’ hysterical tale of elfin’ woe is a hilarious send-up of his brief, misguided career as a Macy’s elf.  Last year’s hit production returns, featuring a hilarious score of twisted holiday favorites against the twisted landscape of Sedaris’s unmatched wit. The Santaland Diaries skewers our sentimental love of all things Christmas—in a production that has become a beloved part of KC Rep’s annual celebration of the darker side of the holidays.

Side by Side by Sondheim

Music by Stephen Sondheim, Leonard Bernstein, Mary Rodgers, Richard Rodgers, July Styne

Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

Directed by Eric Rosen

Spencer Theatre
January 27 – February 19, 2017

KC Rep is proud to present the musical revue celebrating the songs of Broadway and film composer Stephen Sondheim.

The musical is in the form of a revue, with various sections tied together by being from a particular Sondheim musical, or having a common theme, and all of it tied together by the Narrator. He explains what show the songs are from, and in some cases provides background on why a song was written. He also notes comparing and contrasting Sondheim themes for the audience.

Featuring many great scores including, “Comedy Tonight”, “Love Is in the Air”, “Send in the Clowns”,   “You Could Drive a Person Crazy”, “A Boy Like That,”  and many more!

Kansas City premiere

Written by Nick Payne

Directed by Eric Rosen

Copaken Stage
February 24 – March 26, 2017

If you could hit rewind on a relationship, you might discover the nuances of choice and destiny, and how the two intersect. This spellbinding, heartbreaking love story removes the boundaries of time and space, delving into the infinite possibilities of a couple’s relationship to reveal how the slightest change in conversation might send you down an entirely different path.  The scene re-sets again and again, in a fascinating look at love and life from one parallel universe to the next.

A Raisin in the Sun
Written by Lorraine Hansberry
Co-Directed by Chip Miller and Marissa Wolf

Spencer Theatre
March 17 – April 9, 2017

The classic story of the Younger family remains universally relevant and deeply relatable more than 60 years after it first hit Broadway.  In pursuit of the American Dream, this dynamic African American family wrestles with the push to assimilate into a white Chicago neighborhood, and the pull of their cultural roots. These opposing forces both unite and divide the family, as each grapples with the social issues that challenge their identity – and the personal choices that will determine their future.

Origin KC New Works Festival
Copaken Stage
April 21 – May 21, 2017

Curated by Marissa Wolf, Director of New Works

What Would Crazy Horse Do?

A World Premiere

Written by Larissa FastHorse
Director TBD

KC Rep proudly presents the world premiere of a new play by preeminent Native American writer Larissa FastHorse.  Twin siblings, the last members of their tribe, have just lost their grandfather when the KKK comes knocking with hopes of forming an alliance to ensure the continuation of their race.  A chilling look at the notion of racial purity, this story reveals the challenges contemporary Native Americans face when fighting extinction in a world that seems to have already forgotten they exist.  The siblings attempt to find their voices in the outside world, while preserving the heritage that is now theirs alone to carry forward.

Man in Love

A World Premiere

Written by Christina Anderson

Directed by Marissa Wolf

In a segregated Depression-era city, rent parties rage above, while men hungry for work and love roam the streets. A string of murders occurs but no one suspects the killer is the quiet, charming librarian, Paul Pare Jr. Reactions vary across the city, and as we watch the word spread from person to person, we wonder if the killer’s violence will extend to those closest to him. Written by Kansas City native Christina Anderson the story examines a world where a criminal and his victims can get lost in the crowd.

Subscriptions and Tickets

For subscription and ticket information for Kansas City Repertory Theatre’s 2016-17 season, please contact the Box Office at 816.235.2700 or visit www.KCRep.org.

Season ticket holders receive many benefits including:

-Free ticket exchanges
-Co-operative arts discount card good for special ticket discounts from local performing arts partners
-Babysitter rebates for subscribers with young children

-Special discounts at over 20 participating area restaurants- Check www.kcrep.org for a complete list of participating restaurants in the Plaza (near Spencer Theatre) or downtown (near Copaken Stage)

-Monthly emails with exclusive insider info on upcoming events and special offers

-20% off items at our lobby gift shop

-Up to 15% off tickets for Holiday Shows or additional tickets to regular season shows

-Free Parking at both theatres!

Gala 2017

Save the date for Saturday, May 20, 2017 for A Fearless Fête 2017.  Mark and Kathy Donovan are the 2017 Gala Chairs. Proceeds from the Gala help ensure that KC Rep can continue to create professional productions that garner regional and national acclaim and provide lifelong learning opportunities through our Education and Community Programs which benefit more than 10,000 Kansas City area students each year. For more information, please contact Amanda Middaugh at Middaugham@kcrep.org or 816.235.1489.


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