ROUNDABOUT BLOG

2011-2012 Season

 

This world premiere marks Roundabout’s second collaboration with Meghan Kennedy. Like so many of the playwrights whose work has come to the Pels in recent years, Meghan started with us in the Roundabout Underground program, where her play Too Much, Too Much, Too Many debuted in 2013. That piece announced the arrival of a stunning new voice – one filled with poeticism, emotional depth, and utter fearlessness. We knew that Meghan was an artist with boundless potential, and I think it’s clear that she’s taken an exciting leap into new territory with this latest play.

With Napoli, Brooklyn, Meghan has chosen to explore a story inspired by her own family history, set in 1960, well before this young talent was born. But that distance from the world her play explores has allowed her to view it through a theatrical lens that elevates the events beyond the tropes of family drama. It has also given her room for deep empathy, imbuing every character on her canvas with a full life and perspective of their own, often in ways that shake us out of our assumptions.

This is a play placed at the cusp of a changing America. In so many ways, 1960 is a wildly different time from what would become “The Sixties” as we think about that decade today, but Meghan allows us to look at that moment through the eyes of young women desperately searching towards a future they didn’t yet know could be theirs. And with a major historic event at its center that quite literally rocks a quiet neighborhood into a new phase, Napoli, Brooklyn throws us into a moment in which possibilities were opening up in newly thrilling and terrifying ways.

It’s a story of immigrants finding their identities and coming to a new understanding of what “home” truly means. It’s a story of unlikely alliances forming in the face of pain and loneliness. And it’s a story of women taking risks that will come to define a generation.

Napoli, Brooklyn is a deeply sensitive, emotionally raw play that will leave you talking (and very likely craving some good Italian food!). I am so thrilled by Meghan’s work, and I can’t wait to share it with you. As you have all season, please continue to email me at artisticoffice@roundabouttheatre.org. I can’t tell you how greatly I value your feedback.

I look forward to seeing you at the theatre!

Sincerely,
Todd Haimes
Artistic Director/CEO


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2016-2017 Season, From Todd Haimes, Napoli Brooklyn


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I’m very happy to announce the first bit of casting for Scott McPherson’s Marvin’s Room, directed by Anne Kauffman. Please join me in welcoming Janeane Garofalo (Lee), Lili Taylor (Bessie), and Celia Weston (Ruth) to the production.

Janeane is making her Roundabout – and Broadway – debut, though her onscreen popularity precedes her. She has received two Emmy nominations for her role in “The Larry Sanders Show,” and she has appeared in such series and films as “Broad City,” “The Jim Gaffigan Show,” “Inside Amy Schumer,” Ratatouille, Wet Hot American Summer, and “The West Wing.” She also will appear in the film adaptation of Stephen Karam’s Speech and Debate. I am thrilled to have Janeane join the Roundabout family.

Both Lili and Celia are Roundabout alums, Lili having appeared in The Three Sisters and Celia in Summer and Smoke. Lili has an extensive list of hit films and television shows to her name, including Maze Runner 2: The Scorch Trials, The Conjuring, “American Crime,” “Hemlock Grove,” “Almost Human,” and “Six Feet Under.” She has been nominated for three Primetime Emmys and has won an Independent Spirit Award for her role in Household Saints. Celia has appeared on Broadway in such shows as True West and Lady from Dubuque, and she received both Tony and Drama Desk nominations for her role in The Last Night of Ballyhoo. Onscreen, she has appeared such series and films as “Modern Family,” “American Horror Story,” Knight and Day, K-Pax, and The Village. She received an Independent Spirit Award nomination for her role in Dead Man Walking. I couldn’t be happier to welcome both Lili and Celia back to the Roundabout stage. Full bios are included in the press release, attached.

Preview performances for Marvin’s Room begin on May 9, 2017. For tickets and more information, please visit our website.


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2016-2017 Season, From Todd Haimes, Marvin's Room


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One of the greatest privileges of my career was working with Arthur Miller. Roundabout produced several revivals of Arthur’s plays over the years, and I can happily admit that this choice is partially because he’s quite simply one of my favorite American playwrights of all time. In fact, it would be fair to thank (or blame!) Arthur Miller for my entire career in the theatre. I can clearly remember being a kid who dreaded reading the novels I was assigned in school. And then, in junior high, I was assigned an Arthur Miller play. It made sense to me in a way no novel ever had. It was my first encounter with the kind of propulsive, morally compelling drama that I would come to learn was Arthur’s specialty. And it sent me running to join the stage crew of the next school play. From that moment on, mine has been a life in the theatre.

Arthur’s own life in the theatre continues to fascinate me. Getting to know the man in the later part of his career was eye-opening, as I watched Arthur react to his older works being revived one after another, even as he continued to write new plays. Here was a man who wrote an instant classic, Death of a Salesman, when he was only 34, and while he derived some joy from the ongoing success of that play, he was always looking forward, still striving to write another piece that might impact the world with the same ferocity. He never stopped trying to make theatre that would illuminate the current world and last well beyond it.

I see a lot of that side of Arthur in The Price. To me, this play sits on a strange border between past and future. Its characters are, in many ways, shackled to their past. Everything that happens in the play is happening less because of decisions made in the present and more because of events that occurred decades earlier, back during the Great Depression. Yet at the same time, it’s 1968, a time of incredible upheaval and forward motion in this country, and it’s clear that these people will see a great deal of change ahead. It’s this tension that makes the play so captivating, as Arthur places these figures in a situation that speaks both to their own particular moment and to the questions faced by anyone trying to reconcile their conscience with the mistakes of the past.

This production marks the first time that Roundabout is producing an Arthur Miller play without the man himself here with us, and I thank his daughter, Rebecca Miller, for that opportunity. I miss the man who, for me, went from inspiration, to legend, to friend. But I think he would be proud of Terry Kinney and his outstanding company of actors and designers. They have come together to create the kind of vibrant theatre that Arthur himself always strove for.

As always, I hope you will share your thoughts with me as you see this production of The Price. Please continue to email me throughout this season at artisticoffice@roundabouttheatre.org. I can’t tell you how greatly I value your feedback, and I look forward to seeing you at the theatre!
Sincerely,
Todd Haimes
Artistic Director/CEO


Arthur Miller's The Price is now in previews at the American Airlines Theatre. For tickets and more information, please visit our website.


Related Categories:
2016-2017 Season, Arthur Miller's The Price, From Todd Haimes


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