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NEWS

The Whale and Two Things: DCTC Premieres Two Brand New Shows


For audiences with eyes on their pocketbooks, a world premiere play is an unsettling idea when thinking about which show to go see, but the Denver Center is committed to not only providing top notch productions of classic works but being on the cutting edge in the national theatre community. That is why the new year not only brings with it resolutions and playoff football, but also new works brought to us by the Denver Center Theatre Company. As it has done for quite some time, DCTC has taken two plays directly from their new play summit and has mounted full productions – The Whale and Two Things You Don’t Talk About at Dinner.

Opening this week on January 13th is THE WHALE – the story of Charlie who hasn’t seen his ex-wife or daughter in 17 years and has grown dangerously obese since his partner’s death. In failing health, Charlie fends off family, friends and church as he doggedly tries to connect with his estranged daughter in this touching story.

Much like the script they have to work with, most of the cast is making their debut at the Denver Center with their parts in THE WHALE. The cast includes Tom Alan Robbins (debut) as Charlie, Angela Reed (Map of Heaven, After Ashley) as Liz and Cory Michael Smith (debut) as Elder Thomas. Playing Ellie is Nicole Rodenburg (debut) and Mary is played by Tasha Lawrence (debut).

THE WHALE is by Samuel D. Hunter and directed by Hal Brooks. Like most of the cast Samuel D. Hunter is making is Denver Center debut, but his play A Bright New Boise won a 2011 Obie Award for Playwriting, 2011 Drama Desk Nomination for Best Play; premiered by Partial Comfort Productions in NYC.  Sam has active commissions from MTC/Sloan, Seattle Rep, and South Coast Rep.

Just a week after, the second of the new works opens with the curtain rising (figuratively, of course) on TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER — the story of Myriam’s annual Passover Seder, a multicultural mix of family and friends, which threatens to explode as politics and religion hijack the conversation, severely testing the ties that bind. Is peace not possible — even at the dinner table?

“This play is a must-see because Loomer builds from the Jewish premise that to make good decisions one must hear different perspectives…and much of it is done through great humor,” says Rabbi Marc Sirinsky of Ashland, Oregon.  “You’ll leave this play talking about ideas with a big smile on your face.”

The cast of TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER includes debuting actors Mimi Lieber as Myriam, Lenny Wolpe as Jack, Karen Pittman as Nikki, Ben Morrow as Christopher, Sala Iwamatsu as Kimiko, Shana Dowdeswell as Rachelle and Sophia Espinosa as Mable. Ginny is Catherine E. Coulson (New Play Summit, 2011). However, some familiar favorites are in the mix as well including: John Hutton playing Josh (20 seasons/To Kill a Mockingbird, Superior Donuts, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Dan is Sam Gregory (36 productions/American Night: The Ballad of Juan José, Ruined, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Alice is Caitlin O’Connell (The Clean House, The Sweetest Swing in Baseball), Lupe is Gabriella Cavallero (19 seasons/Living Out, Mama Hated Diesels), and Sam is Nasser Faris (Inana).

 This is not the first time that playwright Lisa Loomer’s work has visited Denver, however. Her piece Living Out was produced here back in 2006. Her new play, Homefree (a DCTC commission), will be part of the 2012 Colorado New Play Summit. She was twice nominated for a Pulitzer and also has received an Imagen Award for positive portrayals of Latinos in all media. As a screenwriter, her credits include Girl, Interrupted and numerous pilots and episodes for television.

PERFORMANCE DATES for THE WHALE  

January 13 – February 19

Tuesday – Thursday                                                      6:30pm

Friday & Saturday                                                         7:30pm

Saturday & Sunday matinee                                           1:30pm 

PERFORMANCE DATES  for TWO THINGS…

January 20 – February 19

Tuesday – Thursday                                                      6:30pm

Friday & Saturday                                                         7:30pm

Saturday & Sunday matinee                                           1:30pm

TICKET INFO

Tickets start at $35 (non-SCFD) and also are available for $10 (SCFD 10 for $10 program) and are on sale now. To purchase, call Denver Center Ticket Services at 303.893.4100.  Groups of 10 or more, please call 303.446.4829.  TTY (for Deaf and hard-of-hearing patrons): 303.893.9582. Tickets also may be purchased at the Denver Center Ticket Office, located at the Helen Bonfils Theatre Complex lobby. Buy and print online at www.denvercenter.org. Student $10 rush ticket are available one hour prior to curtain with a valid student ID subject to availability.  Senior and military rush tickets are available one hour prior to curtain, subject to availability. No children under six will be admitted to any theatre. 

THE WHALE is recommended for adults. Contains drug use, homosexuality and death. Children under the age of 6 are not allowed into the theatre. TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER is recommended for ages 15 and up. Contains discussions of religion, politics, bulimia, adoption and interracial marriage.

 

Special Events for THE WHALE

 

  • Perspectives on the Play | January 13 at 6pm

The DCTC’s creative team provides the audience a unique perspective on the production. In the Jones Theatre.

  • General Talkbacks | January 22, post-show

Join us for a post-show discussion with the actors from the show

  • In Conversation | January 22

Engage – Experience – Reflect

    • Engage in a pre-show dialogue with local and regional authorities about the division between homosexuality and religion.
    • Share in the experience of watching the matinee performance 
    • Reflect  upon the performance, sharing your perspective, in a post-show setting

Pre-show dialogue – Conservatory Theatre (Newman Building, 1101 13th Street, 3rd floor)
Post-show dialogue – In the theatre following the performance
Use promo code CONVERSATION to purchase tickets to this event. Participation in the pre- and-post show dialogues is free.

For more information about In Conversation visit www.denvercenter.org/connect

  • Theatre & Theology | January 24, post-show

In a continued partnership with Pastor Dan Bollman with the Rocky Mountain Evangelical Lutheran Synod, this discussion examines the relevant connections to the productions through the theological lens.

  • Fourth Wall | January 28 at 6:30pm

Join other 20 and 30-somethings at Fourth Wall, which includes tickets to the play and pre- and post-show parties that expand the theatrical world.  THE WHALE and TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER event includes a light dinner, a ticket to one of the shows and a drink at the after-party.

For more information visit www.denvercenter.org/fourthwall

  • Talkback hosted by the Higher Education Advisory Council | January 29, post-show

Join the cast for a discussion led by members of our academic community.

  • ASL Interpretation/Audio Described Performance | February 5, 1:30pm

Special Events for TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER

  • Perspectives on the Play | January 20 at 6pm

The DCTC’s creative team provides the audience a unique perspective on the production. In the Jones Theatre.

  • Fourth Wall | January 28 at 6:30pm

Join other 20 and 30-somethings at Fourth Wall, which includes tickets to the play and pre- and post-show parties that expand the theatrical world.  TWO THINGS YOU DON’T TALK ABOUT AT DINNER event includes a light dinner, a ticket to the show and a drink at the after-party.

For more information visit www.denvercenter.org/fourthwall

  •  In Conversation | FebruaryEngage – Experience – Reflect
    • Engage in a pre-show dialogue with local and regional authorities about the division between homosexuality and religion.
    • Share in the experience of watching the matinee performance 
    • Reflect  upon the performance, sharing your perspective, in a post-show setting

Pre-show dialogue – Conservatory Theatre (Newman Building, 1101 13th Street, 3rd floor)
Post-show dialogue – In the theatre following the performance
Use promo code CONVERSATION to purchase tickets to this event. Participation in the pre- and-post show dialogues is free.

For more information about In Conversation visit www.denvercenter.org/connect

  • Theatre & Theology | February 7, post-show

In a continued partnership with Pastor Dan Bollman with the Rocky Mountain Evangelical Lutheran Synod, this discussion examines the relevant connections to the productions through the theological lens.

  • General Talkbacks | February 12, post-show

Join us for a discussion with the actors from the show

  • Talkback hosted by the Higher Education Advisory Council | February 19, post-show

Join the cast for a discussion led by members of our academic community.

  •  ASL Interpretation/Audio Described Performance | February 19, 1:30pm

# # #

**Please be advised that The Denver Center for the Performing Arts – denvercenter.org – is the ONLY authorized online seller of tickets for Denver Center Attractions (the Broadway touring productions) and the Denver Center Theatre Company (the resident theatre company productions). Currently there are scalpers, also known as ‘second party vendors,’ selling tickets online at a rate more than double the standard price – and up. Tickets bought through these vendors MAY NOT BE VALID. You could not only be refused admission, but also lose your entire investment.

The Denver Center for the Performing Arts is a not-for-profit organization.


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