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Sundance Institute Announces 2019 Theatre Lab Acting Company, Dramaturgs and Advisors


Jesse Alick, Rachel Hauck, Lisa Kron, Amauta Marston-Firmino & Others Join Creative Team

Acting Company to Include Cherise Boothe, Elise Kibler, Tony Plana, Ariel Stachel & Others

New York -- Sundance Institutes 2019 Theatre Lab convenes Monday, July 8; the Institute announced this years participating acting company and creative advisors today. The Lab, which runs through July 28 at Utah's Sundance Resort, will be led by the program's Director, Christopher Hibma in collaboration with Manager Ana Verde; the eight projects were selected by Hibma and former Theatre Program Artistic Director Philip Himberg, with support of a six-member Advisory Committee. At the 2019 Lab, Hibma will collaborate with director and Theatre Lab alumna Lisa Peterson , who will serve as Guest Artistic Director and Jumana Al-Yasiri will join in her capacity as Manager for the Program's Middle East / North Africa year-round initiatives.

The Lab is a place and time where theatre-makers of all stripes can get their work off the page said Hibma. We design a space with the support of an attentive staff and rigorous expertise -- dramaturgs and creative advisors, in addition to the acting company -- with the goal of gracious experimentation, enabling these artists to explore and realize stories that live in real time and space.

More than 85% of Sundance-supported plays and musicals find production. Recent projects include 2015's Tony Award Winner for Best Musical, Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori's Fun Home, and 2014's winner, Robert L. Freedman & Steven Lutvak's A Gentlemans Guide to Love and Murder, as well as titles such as the Tony Award nominee Indecent, Taylor Mac's A 24 Hour Decade of Popular Music, The Treasurer, Between the World and Me, Where can I find someone like you, Ali?, Skeleton Crew, Sell/Buy/Date, ToasT, Appropriate, Circle Mirror Transformation, An Iliad, The Good Negro, The Light in the Piazza, Passing Strange, Stuck Elevator, Spring Awakening and I Am My Own Wife.

This year's participants include:

Dramaturgs/Creative Consultants

Abdullah Al-Kafri (Ettijahat - Beirut, Lebanon)

Jesse Cameron Alick (Public Theater - New York, NY)

Lisa Kron (Fun Home)

Amauta Marston-Firmino (Slave Play)

Janice Paran

Creative Advisors

Omar Abi Azar (Zoukak Theatre Company - Beirut, Lebanon)

Oskar Eustis (Public Theater - New York, NY)

Rachel Hauck (Hadestown, What the Constitution Means to Me)

Indhu Rubasingham (Kiln Theatre - London, UK)

Acting Company

Abubakr Ali (We Live in Cairo)

Wilma Bonet

Cherise Boothe (Fabulation, or the Re-Education of Undine)

Eston Fung

Yetta Gottesman (The Last Days of Judas Iscariot)

Obehi Janice

Russell Jones

Elise Kibler (The Heidi Chronicles)

Keren Lugo (Privacy)

Zdenko Martin (A View from the Bridge)

Bruce McKenzie (A Streetcar Named Desire)

Zoe Modiga

Tony Plana (Ugly Betty)

Brenda Pressley (The Lyons)

Vusi Sondiyazi

Vuyo Sotashe

Ariel Stachel (The Band's Visit)

Phindi Wilson (The Lion King)

Casting Director

Henry Russell Bergstein, C.S.A.

Production Manager

Amanda Spooner

Stage Management

Shelley Miles

Helen Irene Muller

Kristin Herrick

Adam Ashraf Elsayigh

Production Assistants

Karishma Bhagani

Kate Carolan

Cortney Gilliam

Chelsey Greene

Special Guests

Roberta Levitow (Theatre Without Borders)

Mara Isaacs (Octopus Theatricals)

The Sundance Institute Theatre Program is supported by an endowment from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, with generous additional support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Perry and Martin Granoff; Luma Foundation; National Endowment for the Arts; Wendy vanden Heuvel; John and Marcia Price Family Foundation; The Shubert Foundation, Inc.; The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust; Wyncote Foundation-Leonard Haas; Richenthal Foundation; The Carrie Louise Hamilton Foundation; and Francena T. Harrison Foundation.

As previously announced, the projects selected for the Theatre Lab are:

The Blind King

By David Adjmi

Directed by Sarah Lunnie

A renowned male playwright has written a play about the ignominious downfall of a powerful business magnate. But when the lead actress meets with him to discuss a small problem with his writing of her character, the problem builds and magnifies and eventually unleashes a pandora's box of issues plaguing America in this frightening and deeply precarious historical moment. The Blind King is a play about the nature of tragedy, and the nature of human nature.

David Adjmi is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, The Steinberg Prize, and the Whiting Award, among others. His memoir Lot Six is forthcoming from HarperCollins. His play The Stumble is a commission from LCT, and Stereophonic (with music by Will Butler/Arcade Fire) is a co-commission from Second Stage and CTG. Other plays include Marie Antoinette, Elective Affinities, 3C, Stunning and The Evildoers . Stunning and Other Plays and Marie Antoinette/3C are both published by TCG.

Sarah Lunnie is a dramaturg. Based in New York, she is the Associate Artistic Director of the Jungle Theater (Minneapolis) and a company member with The Mad Ones. Recent projects: What The Constitution Means To Me (Broadway, NYTW, Clubbed Thumb), Hillary and Clinton (Broadway), Mrs. Murray's Menagerie (Ars Nova). Other work at Actors Theatre of Louisville, the Bushwick Starr, the Denver Center, The Kennedy Center, The Lark, Ma-Yi, New Dramatists, the O'Neill, and Playwrights Horizons.


Written & directed by Whitney White

Definition is a new musical that takes a surrealist look at a contemporary African American womans monotonous, disconnected city-existence. A visit to the museum breathes life into her inner world, and she falls in love with a Magritte painting. A look at delusion and how we walk with our
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