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Indie Rock Musical WEIGHTLESS To Play September 17 - October 16 at WP THEATER
Last Edit: Official_Press_Release 03:01 pm EDT 08/05/22
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 02:41 pm EDT 08/05/22

WEIGHTLESS
TAKES FLIGHT THIS FALL IN OFF-BROADWAY STAGE PREMIERE
AT WP THEATER

Written By The Kilbanes
Directed By Tamilla Woodard
Choreographed By nicHi douglas

PREVIEWS BEGIN SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
OPENING NIGHT SET FOR THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29
FOR STRICTLY LIMITED ENGAGEMENT AT WP THEATER

“Weightless has a well-crafted form, and its spoken dialogue melds beautifully with the propulsive score. Weightless is an accomplished work, and an entertaining one.” – The New York Times

“The Kilbanes could fly endlessly into space on a single, hypnotically executed chord…To watch this show is to be reanimated with a childlike sense that our choices have magical origins and magical ripple effects.” – San Francisco Chronicle

(New York, NY) WP Theater (Producing Artistic Director Lisa McNulty, Managing Director Michael Sag), are thrilled to announce that Weightless will play a limited engagement from September 17 – October 16, 2022 at WP Theater (2162 Broadway), with support from piece by piece productions. The off-Broadway stage premiere of this soaring and dynamic indie rock musical follows the smash success of Weightless on screen, which was reconceived for film and live-streamed by WP in a limited run in 2021. Featuring the propulsive and intimate musical storytelling of Bay Area indie rock band The Kilbanes – headlined by married songwriting and performing duo Kate Kilbane and Dan Moses – the production will be directed by Tamilla Woodward (Assoc., Hadestown; WP’s Where We Stand), and choreographed by nicHi Douglas (Assoc., Girl From The North Country). Opening Night will take place on September 29, 2022.

Sisterhood. Love. Vengeance. Flight. Inspired by a tale from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Weightless tells the story of two deeply devoted sisters, Procne and Philomela. Separated by circumstance, they must travel across worlds—facing devastating sacrifice and divine intervention—in order to reunite. The Kilbanes’ Weightless is a theatrical concept album driven by a deeply moving narrative, which weaves ancient myth with indie rock; the band and the cast are one and the same, blurring the line between actors and musicians, as well as between musical theater and rock concert.

Starring alongside Kilbane (Procne/Bass) and Moses (Keyboards/Chorus) in the Off-Broadway stage premiere of Weightless are Lila Blue (Philomela), Kofy Brown (Iris/Percussion), Dan Harris (Percussion), and Joshua Pollock (Tereus/Guitar), all of whom reprise their roles from the 2021 film version. Set Design is by Peiyi Wong (Broadbend, Arkansas), Costume Design is by Dina El-Aziz (The Vagrant Trilogy), Lighting Design is by Stacey Derosier (sandblasted, Fat Ham), Sound Design is by Joanna Lynn Staub (Hatef*ck; Assoc.: Angels in America), and Projection Design is by Johnny Moreno (For All The Women Who Thought They Were Mad, Paper Piece). The Production Stage Manager is Ralph Stan Lee. Weightless is produced with support from piece by piece productions.

The world premiere of Weightless was developed and produced by Z Space (Lisa Steindler, Executive Artistic Director) and piece by piece productions in March 2018 at Z Space in San Francisco. In 2019, it played at A.C.T. in San Francisco, and BRIC House in Brooklyn as part of the Public Theater’s Under the Radar festival. In these early iterations, the New York Times hailed the show for its “well-crafted form, and its spoken dialogue which melds beautifully with the propulsive score. Weightless is an accomplished work, and an entertaining one.” The San Francisco Chronicle wrote, “The Kilbanes could fly endlessly into space on a single, hypnotically executed chord…to watch this show is to be reanimated with a childlike sense that our choices have magical origins and magical ripple effects.” Following the piece’s extensive further development with director Tamilla Woodard, including at TheaterSquared as part of the Arkansas New Play Festival, WP Theater filmed the show at CalShakes, a spectacular outdoor amphitheater in the Bay Area, and streamed it online May-June of 2021. The Kilbanes’ subsequent release of the Weightless album, can be heard on Spotify and other streaming services.

Tickets are now available at www.WPtheater.org. The ticket range is $39-89.

@WPtheater
#WeightlessMusical

BIOGRAPHIES:

KATE KILBANE (Author/Procne/Bass, She/Her) & DAN MOSES (Author/Keyboard, He/Him). The Kilbanes are a theatrical rock band led by married songwriting duo Kate Kilbane and Dan Moses. Their rock musical Weightless ran at ACT after productions at the Public Theatre’s Under the Radar Festival and Z Space in San Francisco. Weightless received the highest rating from the SF Chronicle as well as a Bay Area Critics Circle Awards nomination for Best New Music. Their piece, Eddie the Marvelous, Who Will Save the World, was selected for the O’Neill National Music Conference in 2018. Eddie got its start at Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor and was featured at Theatreworks’ New Works Festival. The Kilbanes collaborated with SF Shakespeare Festival on a musical version of As You Like It that played throughout the Bay Area. They currently have commissions with Theatreworks Silicon Valley and ACT’s Youth Conservatory program and have collaborated on several pieces with nationally renowned playwright Lauren Gunderson.

TAMILLA WOODARD (Director, She/Her) Recently named one of 50 Women to Watch on Broadway, Tamilla Woodard is Chair of the Acting Program at the David Geffen School of Drama at Yale University; the co-founder of the site specific international partnership, PopUP Theatrics; the current Artistic Advisor and former co-Artistic Director of the award-winning Working Theatre in New York; and was the Associate Director of the Tony Award-winning Hadestown on Broadway in its premier season. Prior to joining Working Theater, Tamilla was the BOLD Associate Artistic Director at WP Theater. Tamilla has directed at theaters nationally and internationally, including at WP Theater, Baltimore Center Stage, American Conservatory Theater, Classical Theater of Harlem, The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts with TheaterWorksUSA, and The Cleveland Public Theatre, among others. Recent highlights include Working: A Musical at the Alliance Theatre; the Lucille Lortel and Audelco-nominated world premiere of Donetta Lavinia Gray’s Where We Stand at WP Theater and Baltimore Center Stage; the Drama League-nominated interactive digital production ofAmerican Dreams by Leila Buck for Working Theater in collaboration with ASU and 9 theaters and performing arts organizations across the country; Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls at A.C.T.’s Geary Theatre; and the critically acclaimed immersive off-Broadway production of 3/Fifths by James Scruggs. Currently, Tamilla is represented online by the concert film Weightless by The Kilbanes (WP Theater); Where We Stand (Steppenwolf NOW); Theater for One’s Here We Areseries by Nicole Salter and Delanna Studi; The Parsnip Ship and MCC’s audio sci-fi This is Where We Go; and the audio drama The House of the Negro Insane by Terence Anthony, produced by the Contemporary American Theater Festival. Next up, Tamilla will head to the Guthrie to direct Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play Sweat. Tamilla is a proud board member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, and is a recipient of the Josephine Abady Award from the League of Professional Theatre Women.

nicHi douglas (Choreographer, she/he/they/we). nicHi douglas is a Brooklyn-based performer, choreographer, director, playwright, educator and ART-IVIST who spells her name with a capital H. She is the Head of Movement in the NYU/Tisch Playwrights Horizons Theater School studio. She has developed original theater work at Denver Center, Berkeley Rep, and The Public Theater, among others. She recently developed an interactive dance exhibit for the National Museum of African-American Music, and Co-Directed an evening-length event for the Women's Summit at this year's all-virtual Sundance Film Festival (2021). Her sacred offering for Black womxn, (pray), co-composed by Starr Busby & JJJJJerome Ellis, has been commissioned by Ars Nova. nicHi's reparations-based mutual aid fund, nicHi's SuSu, launched in October 2020. nicHi is currently a Resident Artist in Ars Nova's Vision Residency 20-21 and New Victory Theater's LabWorks Residency 20-21. Recent stage credits: A Time Like This: Music for Change (Carnegie Hall, Stage Director), Girl From the North Country (Public Theater, Associate Choreographer), where love lies fallow (Open Call/The Shed, The Public Theater, Playwright/Choreographer/Director), SKiNFoLK: An American Show (NYT Critic's Pick//The Bushwick Starr/National Black Theater, Choreographer). Upcoming: The Harriet Holland Social Club Presents the 84th Annual Star-Burst Cotillion in the Grand Ballroom of the Renaissance Hotel (The Movement Theatre Company/New Georges, Movement Director)BFA, Tisch/NYU; MFA, The New School www.mynameisnichi.com | @mynameisnichi

LILA BLUE (Philomela, They/She) Off-Broadway credits include Anya in Cherry Orchard (Lake Lucille Chekhov Project), Philomela in Weightless (Z Space), and Lila in Live From the Basement (New Conservatory Theatre Center). Television and film credits include her original music in the film Story of A Girl (Lifetime), as well as original music in the documentary Each and Every Day (MTV). She is currently pursuing a B.A. at Sarah Lawrence.

KOFY BROWN (Iris/Percussion, She/Her) An Oakland, Calif. musician, singer and songwriter, Kofy is a pioneering force in the Bay Area’s hip-hop soul/rock music scene. She’s played the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival, toured with Iggy Pop, and performed with Bootsy Collins, Maceo Parker, Macy Gray and others as well as placing music on MTV, OWN and other independent films. While on tour the KBB (Kofy Brown Band), have spread the gospel of Brown’s unique style of soul, rock, funk and more all-over North America, Canada and Europe. She is also the drummer/singer for Skip The Needle and bassist/singer for Sistas in the Pit. Her music is released on her indie label Simba Music and is available on all electronic formats. www.kofybrown.com

DAN HARRIS (Percussion, He/Him) has been the drummer with the Kilbanes for over 10 years. He also plays with San Francisco rock band Society of Rockets. In the early and mid-2000s he produced hip hop with various rappers in St. Louis, and played drums with the St. Louis hip hop band Sac Lunch. When not drumming, he develops cutting-edge digital audio technologies for consumer electronics and professional audio companies. He received his Master of Science degree in Music Engineering Technology from the University of Miami Frost School of Music.

JOSH POLLOCK (Tereus/Guitar, He/Him) is an actor, composer, and musician who’s performed throughout the world in about 4,000 bands and in collaborations with the likes of John Cale, Flea, Acid Mothers Temple, and Van Dyke Parks, amongst others. He was last seen on stage playing drums and all the old white dudes in The Shotgun Players' "My H8 Letter To The Gr8 American Theater", on television as Wolverine #2 in the series “Trauma” (NBC), and on film as Coughing Man in Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion. He can also be heard narrating the audiobook of I’m Your Man: The Life Of Leonard Cohen, by Sylvie Simmons. JoshPollockInc.com

PEIYI WONG (Scenic Design) is a scenographer and interdisciplinary artist based in Brooklyn, NY. She designs sets, installations, and costumes for live performance and film. Select off-Broadway and downtown credits include set+costume design: The Trial of the Catonsville Nine (Transport Group), A Hunger Artist (Sinking Ship|The Tank), MukhAgni (The Public UTR), The Seventh Voyage and All the Different Ways…(Theater in Quarantine); set design: The Vicksburg Project (Mabou Mines), Songs About Trains (Radical Evolution|Working Theater), Look Out Sh!^head (Object Collection|La Mama), Memoirs of a…Unicorn (NYLA, 2018 Bessie Award Outstanding Design), Charleses (The Tank, Hewes nomination); costume design for Namour (ARRAY feature film, on Netflix). Upcoming: SPEECH (Lightning Rod Special). Faculty at Playwrights Horizons Theater School, NYU Tisch. MFA, CalArts. www.peiyiameliawong.com

DINA EL-AZIZ (Costume Design, She/Her/Hers) Regional Theater: Selling Kabul (Seattle Rep); Unseen (OSF); When Monica Met Hillary, (Miami New Drama); This is Who I Am (OSF/Woolly Mammoth/The Guthrie/ART/PlayCo); 9 Parts of Desire (Portland Center Stage); King Lear (Northern Stage); Noura (The Guthrie); Noura (The Old Globe); Selling Kabul (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Off-Broadway: The Vagrant Trilogy (The Public Theater); Spindle Shuttle Needle (Clubbed Thumb); Heartland (Geva Theater/59E59); First Down (Noor Theater/59E59); Hindsight (Fault Line Theater); Eh Dah? Questions for My Father (Hypokrit Theatre); The Russian and The Jew (Anna and Kitty Inc/The Tank); Dead Are My People (Noor Theater). Other Theater: One Night, P*ssyC*ck Know Nothing, Marjana and the Forty Thieves Pay No Attention To The Girl, (Target Margin Theater); Design for Stage and Film M.F.A. - NYU Tisch School of the Arts. www.dinae.me

STACEY DEROSIER (Lighting Design, She/Her) Credits: Fat Ham (Public Theater), sandblasted (Vineyard Theatre and WP Theater, Lortel nomination), This Beautiful Future (TheaterLab), The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe (The Shed), The Last of the Love Letters (Atlantic Theater Company), Stew (Page 73), for all the women who thought they were mad (Soho Rep), White Noise conceived by Daniel Fish (NYU Skirball), Playing Hot! (Pipeline Theater Company), Lewiston/Clarkston (Rattlestick Playwright’s Theater). 2018 Recipient of The Daryl Roth Creative Spirit Award.

JOANNA LYNNE STAUB (Sound Design, she/her) returns to WP Theater, having previously designed Hatef**k and the 2018 Pipeline Festival. She is a NYC-based Sound Designer and Audio Engineer with over 30 years of experience in Live Entertainment. Her Off-Broadway and Regional designs include work at Alliance Theatre, Asolo Rep, 5th Avenue Theatre Seattle, Goodman Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Public Theater, and Seattle REP. She has extensive credits associate designing and engineering Broadway Shows and National Touring Companies. TV credits include audio engineering the NBC-Live! Productions of The Sound of Music, Peter Pan, and The Wiz. Her work as a recording engineer was honored with a 2022 GRAMMY Nomination for Best Musical Theatre Album for Snapshots. She has lectured at Ithaca College, Princeton University, and University of Cincinnati. She holds degrees in music and audio engineering from Ithaca College and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Jlssound.com

JOHNNY MORENO (Projection / Video Design) is a production designer, film & video maker and educator working in Live Music, Theater, Film & Video. For over a decade he has toured internationally as a video director & designer with multi-Grammy Award winning singer Lila Downs. As a film / video maker & cinematographer, he directs and creates visual material across a variety of mediums. Projects include work for composer Hans Zimmer, Production Design on José Rivera’s short film The Fall of a Sparrow, Executive Producer on award winning short film Early Light. He provided camera work for designer Peter Nigrini on Broadway’s MJ the Musical, Dear Evan Hansen and MCC’s Space Dogs of the Cosmodrome. Theater Design: Fandango for Butterflies and Coyotes (La Jolla Playhouse), For All the Women Who Thought They Were Mad; (Soho Rep), Addressless; (Rattlestick Theater), A Grave is Given Supper; (New Ohio Theater / Teatro Dallas), Definition; (Bushwick Starr) Art / Public Installations include: Sweet Crude Video Sculpture (Anna Kustera Gallery), As Above So Below (Dumbo Arts Festival) Upcoming: Public Obscenities; (Soho Rep). johnnymoreno.com IG/Twitter: @johnnymoreno

RALPH STAN LEE (Production Stage Manager, he/him) Ralph Stan Lee hails from Long Island. Ralph graduated from an HBCU, NC A&T and went to grad school after. During his career he has worked several festivals, off-Broadway and regional shows. Ralph primarily has worked on National and International tours. Ralph also served as the Head of B.F.A. Stage Management at Penn State University. Selective PSM Credits: National Tours; Hamilton (Angelica first national) Summer: The Donna Summer Musical (first national), Chicago (Cellblock tour), The Bodyguard (first national), Motown (second national, 1st SM), Nice Work if You Can Get It, A Christmas Story, Dreamgirls, Hello Dolly (50th anniversary w/ Sally Struthers), Kinky Boots (Asia), Cinderella (2nd National). He is blessed to have been taken around the world to do theater. I love you Naomi & Leanora.

ABOUT WP THEATER (Lisa McNulty, Producing Artistic Director; Michael Sag, Managing Director), now in its 45th Season, is the nation’s oldest and largest theater company dedicated to developing, producing, and promoting the work of Women+ at every stage of their careers.

For over four decades we have served as leaders of a global movement towards gender parity, and the example we set and the artists we have fostered have grown into a robust, thriving community in theater and beyond. WP empowers Women+ artists of all kinds to reach their full potential, challenging preconceptions about the kinds of plays they write and the stories they tell.

Founded in 1978 by Julia Miles as Women’s Project Theater, WP Theater has earned acclaim as a home for Women+ theatermakers, historically marginalized in the field, to hone their craft while becoming leaders, change-makers, and advocates in the industry. To date, we have produced more than 600 Mainstage productions and developmental projects and published 11 anthologies of plays by Women+ artists. WP Theater is proud of the ways in which we have made a difference in the artistic landscape of New York and beyond, and we continue to forge forward by offering these artists a platform to develop and present their stories.

Today, WP accomplishes its mission through several fundamental programs, including: the WP Lab, a celebrated two-year mentorship and new play development program for Women+ playwrights, directors, and producers; the Domestic Partner residency program; the Developmental series of workshops and readings; the Commissioning program, and the Mainstage series, which features a full season of Off-Broadway productions written and directed by extraordinary theater artists. Current artists under commission are: Donnetta Lavinia Grays, Emily Kaczmarek, MJ Kaufman, Sylvia Khoury, Zoe Sarnak, and Leah Nanako Winkler.

WP Theater received a Lucille Lortel Award and an Obie Award, both for Outstanding Body of Work; and a 2020 Special Drama Desk Award recognizing WP and its founder, Julia Miles. As the premier launching pad for some of the most influential artists in theater, television, and film, our work has a significant impact on the field. Nearly every notable female theater artist has been through our doors, including: 2019 Tony Winner Rachel Chavkin; two-time Pulitzer Prize Winner Lynn Nottage, 2018 Pulitzer Prize Winner Martyna Majok; MacArthur “Genius” Grant Winner & Tony Award Nominee Dominique Morisseau; Tony Winner Pam MacKinnon; and Tony Winner Diane Paulus. At WP, these powerful women found an early artistic home and are a testament to our role as a driving cultural force.

When we say Women+ we mean people who are cis women, trans, non-binary, or gender-nonconforming people, and all gender identities which have been systematically oppressed throughout history in the theater and beyond.
Link http://www.WPtheater.org
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