Manhattan Theatre Club Announces THE BEST WE COULD, KING JAMES, POOR YELLA REDNECKS Off-Broadway
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 04:53 pm EDT 08/15/22

Manhattan Theatre Club Announces Shows
for New York City Center – Stage I Off-Broadway

World Premiere
the best we could (a family tragedy)
By Emily Feldman
Directed by Daniel Aukin

New York Premiere
Steppenwolf Theatre Company and
Center Theatre Group’s production of
King James
By Rajiv Joseph
Directed by Kenny Leon
Starring Glenn Davis and Chris Perfetti

New York Premiere
Poor Yella Rednecks
By Qui Nguyen
Directed by May Adrales

Lynne Meadow (Artistic Director) and Barry Grove (Executive Producer) are pleased to announce the remaining shows for Manhattan Theatre Club’s 2022-2023 off-Broadway season, and the first show of the 2023-2024 off-Broadway season, at New York City Center – Stage I (131 West 55th Street).

In February 2023, MTC will present the world premiere of the best we could (a family tragedy), written by Emily Feldman (Three Women in Four Chairs, My Lover Joan), and directed by Daniel Aukin (Fool For Love, Fulfillment Center). Previews will begin Tuesday, February 7, 2023 ahead of a Wednesday, March 1, 2023 opening night. The production was previously scheduled for the 2019-2020 season, when Feldman was MTC’s 2019-20 Tow Playwright-in-Residence, and delayed due to the COVID shutdown.

In May 2023, MTC will present the New York premiere of Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Center Theatre Group’s production of King James, written by Pulitzer Prize finalist Rajiv Joseph (Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo) and directed by Tony Award winner Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun, Fences). Previews will begin Tuesday, May 2, 2023 ahead of a Tuesday, May 16, 2023 opening night.

These two productions join the New York premiere of Where the Mountain Meets the Sea, written by AUDELCO Award nominee Jeff Augustin (The New Englanders, “The Morning Show”) and directed by Princess Grace Award winner Joshua Kahan Brody, with music by The Bengsons (Hundred Days, The Lucky Ones), to complete MTC’s 2022-2023 off-Broadway season at New York City Center – Stage I.

Kicking off the 2023-2024 Stage I season will be the New York premiere of Poor Yella Rednecks, written by Qui Nguyen and directed by May Adrales, which was previously announced for Spring 2023. First preview and opening night dates will be announced soon.

the best we could (a family tragedy)
World Premiere by Emily Feldman
Directed by Daniel Aukin

Previews Begin: Tuesday, February 7, 2023
Opening: Wednesday, March 1, 2023

A daughter’s road trip with her father becomes a theatrical journey across more than just state lines. This funny, wise, and heartbreaking debut from an exciting new writer will be brought to vibrant life by director Daniel Aukin, whom MTC audiences will remember from Fool for Love and Fulfillment Center.

Casting, creative team, and other listings information for the best we could (a family tragedy) will be announced soon.

the best we could (a family tragedy) is supported by an Edgerton Foundation New Play Award.

Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Center Theatre Group’s production of
King James
New York Premiere by Rajiv Joseph
Directed by Kenny Leon
Starring Glenn Davis and Chris Perfetti

Previews Begin: Tuesday, May 2, 2023
Opening: Tuesday, May 16, 2023

”King” LeBron James was just the hero that Cleveland needed. One of the greatest NBA players to ever hit the court, his influence on the whole city loomed large for the dozen years of his reign. Pulitzer Prize finalist Rajiv Joseph’s (Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo) wonderfully funny and remarkably moving new play chronicles the unexpected friendship between two men whose intertwined fortunes are tied to those of their idol. This highly anticipated, adrenaline-paced New York premiere about the power of connection is directed by Tony Award winner Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun, Fences).

Also in the company is Khloe Janel as the DJ. The creative team and other listings information for King James will be announced soon.

FALL 2023
Poor Yella Rednecks
New York Premiere by Qui Nguyen
Directed by May Adrales

New dates: previews begin Fall 2023

The author of the acclaimed Vietgone returns to MTC with the second play of his autobiographical trilogy about an immigrant family’s bumpy road to the American dream. Told from the mother’s perspective, Poor Yella Rednecks is the story of a young family’s attempt to put down roots in Arkansas, a place as different from Vietnam as it gets. The production, filled with infectious music and unexpected humor, will reunite Qui Nguyen with director May Adrales for the next chapter in this highly entertaining and moving tale.

Poor Yella Rednecks is co-commissioned by South Coast Repertory and Manhattan Theatre Club. Support for MTC’s production of Poor Yella Rednecks is provided by the Howard Gilman Foundation and Laurents/Hatcher Foundation.

Previously announced:
FALL 2022
Where the Mountain Meets the Sea
New York Premiere by Jeff Augustin
Directed by Joshua Kahan Brody

Previews Begin: Tuesday, October 11
Opening: Wednesday, November 2

From acclaimed writer Jeff Augustin (The New Englanders at MTC, "The Morning Show") comes a timely story of a son's quest to connect with his father. Lyrical story-telling and live folk songs from The Bengsons weave a tale of searching and longing, family and legacy. A Haitian immigrant travels from Miami to California on a once-in-a-lifetime road trip. Years later, his son makes the same journey in reverse. Along the way, blurring the lines of time, these two finally discover common ground and make a connection that has eluded them for decades. Directing is Princess Grace Award winner Joshua Kahan Brody.

The New York premiere production will feature Obie and AUDELCO Award winner Russell G. Jones (Ruined, “Only Murders in the Building”) and Chris Myers (How I Learned to Drive).

Where the Mountain Meets the Sea was commissioned by and premiered in the 2020 Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville.

The production’s creative team includes Arnulfo Maldonado (scenic design), Dominique Fawn Hill (costume design), Stacey Derosier (lighting design), Ben Truppin-Brown (sound design), Sarah Lunnie (dramaturgy), Steph Paul (movement), and Roxana Khan (production stage manager).

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadow and Executive Producer Barry Grove, MANHATTAN THEATRE CLUB’s artistic profile is defined by our sustained commitment to producing new theatrical works of the highest quality in our three theatres. We are dedicated to living playwrights, working with the most accomplished artists and launching new talent. Each season, we aspire to create an innovative, entertaining, thought-provoking, and diverse repertoire of exciting productions. Over five decades, MTC has grown from a small off-off-Broadway showcase into one of the country’s most prestigious and award-winning theatre companies, creating approximately 600 world, American, New York and Broadway premieres. Our productions have earned 7 Pulitzer Prizes, 28 Tony Awards, 50 Drama Desk Awards and 49 Obie Awards amongst many other honors. Our Broadway home is the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47thStreet) and our two Off-Broadway theatres are at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street). MTC is an anti-racist organization that respects and honors all voices, and upholds the values of community and equity. For more information, please visit www.ManhattanTheatreClub.com

Joining MTC’s season of plays is easy! Just call the MTC Clubline at 212-399-3050 or go to www.manhattantheatreclub.com.

BIOGRAPHIES FOR the best we could (a family tragedy)

A picture containing person, posing, hair Description automatically generated

EMILY FELDMAN (Playwright) was the 2019-2020 Tow Playwright-in-Residence at Manhattan Theatre Club. Her plays have been included on The Kilroys List, received The Kennedy Center's Paula Vogel Prize, and an Edgerton Foundation New Play Award. She is an alum of MacDowell, The Working Farm at SPACE on Ryder Farm, Page 73's Interstate-73 Writers Group, and The Ground Floor at Berkeley Rep. She is a Core Writer at The Playwrights Center and a graduate of The Juilliard Playwrights Program. She is working on commissions for Playwrights Horizons, Manhattan Theatre Club, Arena Stage, and developing a television series for AMC.

DANIEL AUKIN ( Director). Daniel is a New York based director. Broadway: Sam Shepard’s Fool For Love. World premieres: Admissions (LCT and London’s West End), Skintight (Roundabout and Geffen Playhouse), Bad Jews (Roundabout), Fulfillment Center (MTC), Rancho Viejo (Playwrights Horizons), Placebo (Playwrights Horizons), What Rhymes With America (Atlantic), Suitcase and [sic] (Soho Rep), The Fortress Of Solitude (Dallas Theatre Center and The Public), Heartless (Signature), 4000 Miles (LCT), The Ugly One (Soho Rep, US premiere), Back Back Back (MTC, NY premiere), Everything Will Be Different, Cat’s-Paw, The Year Of The Baby and Molly’s Dream. Also Catch As Catch Can (Playwrights Horizons) and revivals of A View From The Bridge and The Adding Machine. Playwright collaborators include Maria Irene Fornes, Dan LeFranc, Melissa James Gibson, Abe Koogler, Amy Herzog, Michael Friedman, Itamar Moses, Mark Schultz, Mac Wellman, Quincy Long, Sam Shepard, Joshua Harmon, and Mia Chung. As Artistic Director of Soho Rep (1998-2006) he garnered three OBIE Awards and developed and produced world premieres by Richard Maxwell, Young Jean Lee, Thomas Bradshaw, Adam Bock, Anne Washburn, The Flying Machine, and Jordan Harrison, among many others.


A picture containing person, indoor, wall, person Description automatically generated

GLENN DAVIS is an accomplished actor, producer, and an Artistic Director of Steppenwolf Theatre. He garnered widespread acclaim for his performance in the world premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo. Davis appeared most recently in King James at Steppenwolf and CTG. He will next be seen in the off-Broadway production of the award-winning Downstate. Additional Steppenwolf performing credits include The Christians, Head of Passes, and The Brother/Sister Plays. He has appeared off-Broadway at MCC Theater and the Vineyard Theatre. Additionally, Glenn has performed at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the National Theatre, and the Stratford Festival. Davis is a partner at The Chatham Grove Company alongside producing partner Tarell Alvin McCraney. He is also an Artistic Associate at The Young Vic Theatre in London and at the Vineyard Theatre in New York.

CHRIS PERFETTI stars as a series regular on the award-winning ABC comedy series “Abbott Elementary.” Perfetti starred in the world premiere of King James at Steppenwolf and CTG, originating the role of “Matt” to great acclaim. NY Theater: Moscow x5 (MCC; OCC Honor; Drama Desk and Drama League nominations); The Low Road (The Public), Six Degrees of Separation (Broadway); Everybody (Signature Theater); Picnic (Broadway); The Tempest (Delacorte Theater); The Tutors (2nd Stage); Cloud Nine (Atlantic Theater Company); Sons of the Prophet (Roundabout; Theater World Award). Other TV appearances include: “Looking” (HBO), “The Night Of” (HBO), “The Resident” (FOX), “In the Dark” (CW), “Bonding” (Netflix), “What We Do in the Shadows” (FX), “Crossbones” (NBC) “Next Caller” (NBC), “Bull” (CBS) and “Gotham” (FOX). In film, Perfetti has recently been seen in The Virtuoso, Minyan, The Surrogate and Before I Go.

KHLOE JANEL (DJ) is beyond grateful to be making their Manhattan Theatre Club debut! Their recent theatre credits include King James (Center Theatre Group, Steppenwolf Theatre), Hatfield & McCoy (House Theatre of Chicago), Fly Honey Show (The Den Theatre) and Haymarket (Underscore Theatre). Their film credits include I Used To Go Here, which is now streaming on HBO Max. Their television credits include “Easy,” “The Chi,” “Empire,” “Chicago Fire,” and “Chicago P.D.” Gratitude and love for my mothers, brothers, chosen family and ancestors. Khloejanel.com @Khloe_Janel

RAJIV JOSEPH (Playwright). Rajiv Joseph’s play Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo was a 2010 Pulitzer Prize finalist for Drama and was also awarded a grant for Outstanding New American Play by the National Endowment for the Arts. He has twice won the Obie Award for Best New American Play, first in 2016 with Guards at the Taj (also a 2016 Lortel Winner for Best Play) and then in 2018 with Describe the Night. Other plays include King James, Letters of Suresh, Archduke, Gruesome Playground Injuries, Animals Out of Paper, The Lake Effect, The North Pool and Mr. Wolf. Joseph has been awarded artistic grants from the Whiting Foundation, United States Artists and the Harold & Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. He served for three years in the Peace Corps in Senegal.

KENNY LEON (Director) is a Tony Award-winning director who also has been honored with The Actors Fund Medal of Honor, an Obie Award and an NAACP Image Award. Mr. Leon is also a proud honoree of the George Abbott Lifetime Achievement for American Theatre. Broadway: A Soldier’s Play; American Son; Children of a Lesser God; Holler If Ya Hear Me; A Raisin in the Sun; The Mountaintop; Stick Fly; August Wilson’s Fences, Gem of the Ocean; and Radio Golf. Off-Broadway: The Underlying Chris, Everybody’s Ruby, Emergence-See! (The Public); Smart People (Second Stage). Television: “Colin in Black & White,” “4400,” “Amend: The Fight for America,” “American Son” (adapted for Netflix), “Hairspray Live!”, “The Wiz Live!”, “Steel Magnolias,” “Dynasty,” “In My Dreams.” Author: Take You Wherever You Go. Artistic Director Emeritus, Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company. Senior Resident Director: Roundabout Theatre Company.

Steppenwolf Theatre Company. Steppenwolf Theatre is America’s premier ensemble theatre. Formed in 1976 by Gary Sinise, Jeff Perry and Terry Kinney, the ensemble has expanded to 50 celebrated artists—among the top actors, playwrights and directors in the field. Productions launched at the theatre, from August: Osage County to Pass Over, and accolades including the National Medal of Arts and 12 Tony Awards made the Chicago theatre legendary. More than 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success nationally and internationally, including Broadway, Off-Broadway, London, Sydney, Galway and Dublin. 2021 marked the opening of Steppenwolf’s landmark Arts & Education Center deepening the company’s commitment to Chicagoland teens. Glenn Davis and Audrey Francis are the Artistic Directors and E. Brooke Flanagan is Executive Director. steppenwolf.org

Center Theatre Group, one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles’ leading nonprofit theatre company, which, under the leadership of Managing Director / CEO Meghan Pressman and Producing Director Douglas C. Baker, and in collaboration with the five Associate Artistic Directors, Luis Alfaro, Lindsay Allbaugh, Tyrone Davis, Neel Keller, Kelley Kirkpatrick, programs seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1,600 to 2,100-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation’s leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics, and circumstance to serve Los Angeles. centertheatregroup.org


RUSSELL G. JONES is an Audelco, Obie and SAG Award-winning actor who has worn many theatermaker hats including director, producer, facilitator, moderator, and teacher. A fixture on New York City stages since the mid-90's, Russell is proud to have originated roles in plays by Lynn Nottage, Suzan-Lori Parks, Tanya Barfield, Fernanda Coppel, Kirk Wood Bromley, and Stephen Adly Guirgis. On screen he was recently a series regular opposite Edie Falco in CBS's “Tommy,” and recurs on Hulu's “Only Murders In The Building.” He is also the founder and Chief of Pedagogy at BLIND SPOT EXPERIENCE, a campaign that facilitates cross-cultural dialogue and critical thinking by providing context and tools for perceiving racial inequity. www.russellgjones.com

CHRIS MYERS. Broadway Debut: How I Learned to Drive (MTC). Selected NY theater: BLKS (MCC), An Octoroon (Soho Rep; Obie Award), The Winter's Tale (The Public), Whorl Inside A Loop (Second Stage), On The Grounds of Belonging (The Public), Little Children Dream of God (Roundabout), Julius Caesar (Shakespeare in the Park), War (LCT3), Brownsville Song (LCT3). Selected regional: Henry IV (Shakespeare Center LA; with Tom Hanks), Fences (McCarter/Long Wharf; Dir: Phylica Rashad), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Shakespeare Theatre DC). TV: "Merry Happy Whatever" (Netflix), "The Resident" (FOX), "Sneaky Pete" (Amazon), "The Good Fight" (CBS), "She's Gotta Have It" (Netflix; Dir: Spike Lee), "The Breaks" (VH1). Training: Juilliard. chrismyersinc.com Instagram: @chrismyersinc

A picture containing person, person Description automatically generated

JEFF AUGUSTIN (Playwright )’s plays include The New Englanders (Manhattan Theatre Club); Little Children Dream of God (Roundabout Theatre Company); The Last Tiger in Haiti (La Jolla Playhouse and Berkeley Rep) and Cry Old Kingdom (Humana Festival). He translated Our Town into Haitian Creole for Miami New Drama’s multilingual production. Jeff was the Shank Playwright-in-Residence at Playwrights Horizons and the inaugural Tow Foundation Playwright-in-Residence at Roundabout. Jeff is currently under commission from Manhattan Theatre Club and La Jolla Playhouse. TV Credits: “Saint X” (Hulu); “Claws” (TNT); “The Morning Show” (Apple) and “The Good Lord Bird” (Showtime). BA: Boston College, MFA: UC San Diego.

JOSHUA KAHAN BRODY (Director )’s directing work includes King of the Yees (Goodman Theatre, Center Theatre Group, and San Francisco Playhouse); The Last Tiger in Haiti (La Jolla Playhouse and Berkeley Rep); AIRNESS (Chautauqua Theater Company); A Funny Thing... (City Theatre); Fourteen Flights (Award for Excellence in Directing, NY Fringe). He has developed work all over the country including at Colorado New Play Summit, New Dramatists, NYTW, Ojai Playwrights Conference, Playwrights Horizons, Perry-Mansfield, and SPACE on Ryder Farm. He is a Princess Grace Award winner and received his MFA from UC - San Diego and his BA from Yale University. He is the co-founder of THE TRIP ( www.thetriptheater.net). Josh lives in Brooklyn with his wife, dramaturg Sarah Lunnie , their two children, and their dog. joshuakahanbrody.com

ABIGAIL & SHAUN BENGSON (Music) are a married composing and performing duo based in New York City and Vermont who have performed across the country and around the world. Their video, The Keep Going Song, has been viewed over 4 million times. Three of their singles have been featured on “So You Think You Can Dance” (FOX). Their theater work includes My Joy Is Heavy! (Arena Stage), “The Keep Going Song” (Actors Theatre of Louisville), Hundred Days (La Jolla Playhouse, New York Theatre Workshop, U.S. Tour), The Lucky Ones (Ars Nova), Where the Mountain Meets the Sea (ATL’s Humana Festival), Anything That Gives Off Light (Edinburgh Theatre Festival), You’ll Still Call Me By Name (New York Live Arts, Jacob's Pillow), and Iphigenia in Aulis (Classic Stage Company). They have received the Jonathan Larson and Richard Rogers awards and nominations for the Drama Desk, Drama League and Lucille Lortel awards. Proud parents to Louie and Charlie.

# # # #

Link http://www.ManhattanTheatreClub.com

Previous: re: Are these Fiasco's first productions since the pandemic? - sampos 02:55 am EDT 08/17/22
Next: Interesting about “King James” - writerkev 05:44 pm EDT 08/15/22

Privacy Policy

Time to render: 0.009563 seconds.