Living Room announces world premiere

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StoryWorks, The HuffPost and The Living Room Theatre present

Tomorrow, Inshallah

Written by Rehana Lew Mirza

Directed by Jennifer Welch

Based on the Reporting of Rowaida Abdelaziz and Christopher Mathias

 

Tomorrow, Inshallah ​ is a world premiere commissioned by StoryWorks

ATTENTION CALENDAR EDITORS 

 WHAT: Tomorrow, Inshallah

Written by Rehana Lew Mirza

Directed by Jennifer Welch

As immigration dominates the national conversation ​Tomorrow, Inshallah ​ holds a mirror to the

American heartland and reflects the beauty and brutality of what it means to be Muslim in

America today. The play is a collage based on interviews from HuffPost reporters Rowaida Abdelaziz and Chris Mathias delving into the realities of everyday existence and one catastrophic event that exemplifies the depth of misunderstanding and distrust that in the end, affects us all.

 This summer, ​Tomorrow, Inshallah​will meet the stage as part of StoryWorks​ a documentary theater project now in its fourth season and the second collaboration with The Living Room Theatre.

WHERE:​ ​   The Living Room Theatre

1818 McGee Street

Kansas City, Mo.

64108

WHEN:   July 20 – August 5

PRESS OPENING Friday July 20th Wednesdays – Saturdays at 8:00 p.m.

Sundays at 3:00 p.m.

Featuring: ​Bradley Thomas, Nedra Dixon*, Ungela Syed, Teonna Wesley, Bonnie Griffin, Curtis Smith, Mathew Ellis and Brad Shaw   *actors appearing courtesy of Actors Equity Association

Nicole Jaja (Lighting Design), David Kiehl (Sound Design), Shawnna Journagan (Properties

Design), Nancy Robinson (Costume Design), Rusty Sneary (Scenic Design), Kyle Dyck (Scenic Design, Technical Director)

TICKETS: ​General admission $35

Tickets available at ​thelivingroomkc.com

*for free community tickets contact ​boxoffice@thelivingroomkc.com

Complete showtimes:

Wednesday   7/18     8:00 p.m. (Preview)  Thursday       7/19     8:00 p.m. (Preview)  Friday            7/20     8:00 p.m.

Saturday        7/21     8:00 p.m.

Sunday          7/22     3:00 p.m.

Wednesday    7/25    8:00 p.m.  Thursday        7/26    8:00 p.m.  Friday             7/27    8:00 p.m.  Saturday         7/28    8:00 p.m.

Sunday           7/29    3:00 p.m.

Wednesday    8/1     8:00 p.m.  Thursday        8/2     8:00 p.m.  Friday             8/3     TBA Saturday        8/4     8:00 p.m.

Sunday          8/5      3:00 p.m.

Tomorrow, Inshallah is made possible through support from the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

About the Playwright

Rehana Lew Mirza’s full-length plays include: ​SOLDIER X (Upcoming: Brooklyn College 2016 production; 2015 Ma-Yi Theater production; 2015 Kilroy Selection; 2012 NYSCA Commission; Lark Development Center Studio Retreat); ​LONELY LEELA (production at LPAC; workshops with Magic

​                               Theatre, HERE, and New Georges; reading at 2G); ​BARRIERS (productions at Desipina and Asian

American Theater Company; readings at Rasik Arts, Toronto, and Asian Arts Center, Philadelphia;

Princess Grace Finalist); ​NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH (NNPN/InterAct Commission, readings at

Brooklyn College, Ma-Yi Theater, and InterAct); and ​         ​if it’s sad i don’t want to see it (reading at Queens Theater in the Park; reading at 2G; O’Neill and Princess Grace semifinalists). Her plays have been published with the Alexander Street Press, indietheaternow, and the New York Theatre

Review. Her breakout play, BARRIERS, was the first play to address 9-11 from a Muslim

perspective, and has been included on the curriculum at West Virginia University, Yale University and NYU, as well as being featured in the article, “Staging Diaspora” (First View of the Cambridge Journal of American Studies).

Rehana is the recipient of a 2016 Lilly Award (the Stacey Mindich “Go Write A Play” Commission) and is currently in a shared National Playwrights Mellon residency with her husband Mike Lew at Ma-Yi Theatre. They are currently in collaboration on a trilogy of plays and a musical, BHANGIN’

IT(with composer Sam Willmott). Past honors include: Rhinebeck Musical Theater Residency for

BHANGIN’ IT, Tofte Lake Emerging Writers Residency, IAAC playwright residency with The Lark Development Center, a TCG Future Leader fellowship with New Georges, an E.S.T. Sloan commission, the NBC DiverseCity ShortCuts Audience Award, P2 for a Cause Grant, Leopold Schepp fellowship, a 2G residency, John Golden Award, and an LMCC artist grant.

For her advocacy work with the South Asian community, Rehana was nominated for a South Asian

Media Award and was featured in publications such as India in New York, DesiTalk, India Abroad,

Bibi Magazine, Nirali Magazine, EGO Magazine, among others. Her short film MODERN DAY ARRANGED MARRIAGE was acquired by the LOGO network. Her feature film HIDING DIVYA exposes the taboo subject of mental illness in the South Asian community, and had a self-produced run in SF, Atlanta, New York, NJ and Michigan, followed by a nationwide college tour with the assistance of a grant from the Asian Women Giving Circle.

She is a member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab (having served as a co-director from 2011-2014) and a member of the Dorothy Strelsin Primary Stages Writers Group. She holds an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University and BFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU, Tisch School of the Arts.

About the Director

Jennifer Welch is the artistic director and creator of StoryWorks, a groundbreaking documentary theater project launched by Reveal and The Center for Investigative Reporting in 2013 that transforms investigative journalism into theater. She has developed 11 new plays across the country – in North Dakota, New Jersey, Mississippi, Missouri and California. Each play exposes the human cost of injustice and structural inequality to help drive social change. Her work reveals the emotional truth of investigative reporting as well as the factual. Dedicated to the development of new plays as a director, dramaturg and producer, Welch has directed over 20 new plays and collaborated with visionary playwrights such as Eugenie Chan, Octavio Solis, Jon Bernson, Donte Clark and Rehana Lew Mirza. She is also a contributing producer for “Reveal,” the Peabody Award-winning public radio show and podcast from CIR and PRX, and the director of Reveal Live. Welch is a 2017 recipient of the Midwest Innocence Project’s Sean O’Brien Freedom Award for her work bringing the story of Bryan Sheppard, who spent 22 years in prison, to a national audience through StoryWorks and “Reveal.” She is based in CIR’s Emeryville, California, office

About StoryWorks:

StoryWorks is a documentary theater project that engages artists with journalists throughout the process to create original plays that reveal emotional, as well as factual ​t​ruths behind the reporting.​ ​The intention of StoryWorks is not to re-create the reporting on stage but to transform it into a theatrical work of art.

storyworks.revealnews. org

In 2013, The Center for Investigative Reporting partnered with Jennifer Welch to launch StoryWorks, an innovative documentary theater series based on investigative journalism from CIR and newsrooms around the country.

Blending high artistic standards and award-winning journalism, StoryWorks presents truthful and beautifully rendered stories that shine a spotlight on the human costs of injustice and structural inequality and help drive social change.

Each year, two to three StoryWorks plays are produced. We are currently in our fourth season and have partnered with news organizations nationwide to create plays inspired by their work and present them​ ​in their communities. Each performance concludes with a conversation between the audience and reporters, artists and individuals whose stories we share.

About the Reporters:

Rowaida Abdelaziz​ is a Social Media Editor at HuffPost, where she spearheads coverage of

Islamophobia and Muslim issues. Her goal is to provide guidance for diverse coverage of the Muslim community in mainstream media. Abdelaziz also focuses on reporting and distributing world news. She specializes in the Middle East and has written numerous stories on the refugee crisis in Syria, Yemen and other parts of the Arab world.

Christopher Mathias​ is a National Reporter at HuffPost, where he covers hate and extremism. He’s also done work for WNYC. Based in New York City, he is originally from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  

HuffPost ​is a global, premier media platform: a Pulitzer Prize-winning source of news, commentary, entertainment, features and lifestyle content. HuffPost serves an average of 170 million viewers on a monthly basis, ranking as the #1 publisher on Facebook in 2016, and spanning 16 editions around the world while using every available tool and platform, including augmented reality and immersive storytelling. ​HuffPost has editions in the UK, Canada, France, Spain, Italy, Japan, Maghreb, Germany, Brazil, South Korea, Greece, India, Australia, the Arab world, Mexico, China, and South Africa and is part of Oath Inc.

The Living Room Theatre ​is an unconventional theatre space in the Crossroads Arts District in Kansas City, Missouri, founded in 2010. Over the past eight years, The Living Room has produced over 50 shows, as well as dozens of staged readings and special theatrical events. In that time, we have organically evolved our mission statement toward a focus on new works written, performed, and realized by local and expatriate Kansas City artists.

Reveal + The Center for Investigative Reporting

Founded in 1977 as the nation’s first nonprofit investigative journalism organization, The Center for Investigative Reporting is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Over those four decades, we have developed a reputation for being among the most innovative, credible and relevant media organizations in the country

Our award-winning journalists hold the powerful accountable and reveal government fraud and waste of taxpayer funds, human rights violations, environmental degradation and threats to public safety. We consistently shine a bright light on injustice and protect the most vulnerable in our society

Image courtesy of The Living Room



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