Roundabout announces three new works for 2020-21 Off-Broadway Season at the Harold & Miriam Steinberg Center For Theatre
Roundabout Theatre Company (Todd Haimes, Artistic Director/CEO) has announced a line-up of all new work Off-Broadway at the Harold & Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre.
“The development of new plays has become a core part of Roundabout’s mission, and in the 2020-21 season, we’re featuring three wildly varied looks at life in America today. I can’t wait for audiences to hear what these three women have to say,” notes Roundabout Artistic Director/CEO Todd Haimes.
The 2020-2021 Off-Broadway season in the Harold & Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre will feature the world premiere of English by Sanaz Toossi for Roundabout Underground; and the New York premieres of The Year to Come by Lindsey Ferrentino, directed by Justin Martin, and The Wanderers by Anna Ziegler, directed by Barry Edelstein in the Laura Pels Theatre.
The 2020-2021 season marks the 14th season of Roundabout Underground with the New York debut of playwright Sanaz Toossi, and the return of playwrights Lindsey Ferrentino and Anna Ziegler at the Laura Pels Theatre. Ferrentino made her New York debut at Roundabout with Ugly Lies the Bone starring Mamie Gummer for Roundabout Underground, followed by Amy and the Orphans starring Jamie Brewer. Zeigler returns to Roundabout following the New York premiere of her play, The Last Match, in 2017. Barry Edelstein directed Roundabout’s Off-Broadway production of All My Sons in 1997; he also directed the world premiere of Ziegler’s The Wanderers at The Old Globe in 2018.
ENGLISH / FALL 2020 IN THE ROUNDABOUT UNDERGROUND
Two words set in motion playwright Sanaz Toossi’s intricate and profound New York debut: “English Only.” This is the mantra that rules one classroom in Iran, where four adult students are preparing for the TOEFL — the Test of English as a Foreign Language. Chasing fluency through a maze of word games, listening exercises, and show-and-tell sessions, they hope that one day, English will make them whole. But it might be splitting them each in half.
As part of Roundabout’s New Play initiative, each participating Underground playwright receives a commission for a new play, demonstrating an unparalleled level of commitment to writers’ careers and the future of theatre in New York.
THE YEAR TO COME / FALL 2020 IN THE LAURA PELS THEATRE
It’s New Year’s Eve again, and the various backgrounds and perspectives of this American family somehow clash even more than they did last year. And the year before. And the year before. But all gathered in their backyard swimming pool, they are safe from the world they fight about… or so they hope. In its New York premiere, playwright Lindsey Ferrentino’s (Amy and the Orphans, Ugly Lies the Bone) epic and scintillating new play weaves Decembers into decades in search of what rips — and mends — the seams of a nation.
The world premiere of The Year to Come was produced in December 2018 at LaJolla Playhouse in San Diego.
THE WANDERERS / WINTER 2021 IN THE LAURA PELS THEATRE
Orthodox Jews Esther and Schmuli are newly married, and their future is written in the laws of the Torah. Secular Jew Abe is a famous novelist who believes he can write his own future…until an unexpected email from a movie star puts his marriage to the test and threatens to prove him wrong. From playwright Anna Ziegler (Actually, The Last Match) comes the New York premiere of a play that ripples across cultures, challenging two very different couples with the same question: Can we be happy with what we have while we have it?
The Wanderers was originally commissioned, developed and produced at The Old Globe (Barry Edelstein, Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director; Timothy J. Shields, Managing Director), and was subsequently produced by Theatre J.
SANAZ TOOSSI (Playwright, English) is an Iranian-American playwright from Orange County, California. Her plays include Wish You Were Here (productions forthcoming) and English (Kilroys’ List 2019; Roundabout Underground reading series). She is currently under commission at the Atlantic Theater (Launch commission; Toulmin grant), South Coast Repertory, IAMA Theatre and Oregon Shakespeare Festival (American Revolutions Cycle). She is a member of Youngblood and the Middle Eastern American Writers Lab at the Lark, and an alum of Clubbed Thumb’s Early Career Writers’ Group. She is the 2019 P73 Playwriting Fellow. MFA: NYU Tisch. Sanaz is a proud child of immigrants.
LINDSEY FERRENTINO (Playwright, The Year to Come) is a New York-based playwright originally from Florida, where many of her plays are set. Her critically acclaimed Ugly Lies the Bone was a New York Times Critic’s Pick and played a sold-out, extended run at Roundabout Theatre before being produced at The National Theatre in London. Other work: Amy and the Orphans (Roundabout Theatre Company), This Flat Earth (Playwrights Horizons), and The Year To Come (La Jolla Playhouse). In the New York Times, Lindsey has been called “a brave playwright of dauntless conviction whose unflinching portraits are hard to come by outside of journalism.” Lindsey will make her screenwriting-debut with the feature film Not Fade Away which Emily Blunt is attached to star in. Ferrentino is the recipient of the 2016 Kesselring Prize, Laurents/ Hatcher Citation of Excellence, ASCAP Cole Porter Playwriting Prize, Paul Newman Drama Award, 2015 Kilroys List, finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn, nominated for the Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award, and is the only two-time finalist for the Kendeda Playwriting Prize. She is currently under commission from Roundabout, The Geffen, and South Coast Rep. She holds a B.F.A. from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and has two M.F.A.’s in playwriting from Hunter College and The Yale School of Drama.
JUSTIN MARTIN (Director, The Year to Come) is an award-winning director working in theatre and television. He has studied and worked extensively throughout North America, The UK and Australasia. Justin’s most recent projects have included co-directing the multi award-winning The Jungle which opened at the Young Vic – an interactive theatrical experience which has played in the West End, St Ann’s Warehouse in New York and San Francisco. Justin was the associate director on the critically acclaimed Skylight at the Wyndham’s Theatre and The Audience at the Gielgud Theatre, both of which he transferred to Broadway in 2015. He also worked with John Tiffany and Steven Hoggett on the National Theatre of Scotland’s production of Let The Right One In at the Royal Court and the Apollo Theatre. He was an associate director on Billy Elliot The Musical working on Broadway, throughout North America, Korea, Amsterdam and Australia. He is developing a stage adaptation of the Australian film The Black Balloon with the Bush Theatre, London and a new play tentatively called The Tosca Project with BMEC in Bathurst, Australia. Alongside Stephen Daldry, Justin worked on television series one and two of The Crown, filming in The UK and South Africa. He is currently developing film and television projects in the UK, US and Australia.
ANNA ZIEGLER (Playwright, The Wanderers) has written the plays Actually (produced at Manhattan Theatre Club, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Geffen Playhouse, Trafalgar Studios and others; L.A. Ovation Award winner for Playwriting for an Original Play), the widely produced Photograph 51 (directed on the West End by Michael Grandage and starring Nicole Kidman; WhatsOnStage Award for Best New Play; named the number one play of 2019 by the Chicago Tribune and in other years selected as a “Best of the Year” play by The Washington Post (twice) and The Telegraph), Boy (Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award nominee), The Wanderers (The Old Globe; Craig Noel Award winner for Outstanding New Play), The Last Match (Roundabout Theatre Company; The Old Globe; upcoming: Writers’ Theatre, Chicago), and A Delicate Ship (New York Times Critic’s Pick; The Playwrights Realm; Cincinnati Playhouse). She holds commissions from Roundabout Theatre Company, Second Stage Theatre, The Manhattan Theatre Club and The Geffen Playhouse. Oberon Books has published a collection of her work entitled Anna Ziegler: Plays One and nine of her plays are published by Dramatists Play Service. Notable in 2019: Photograph 51 at Melbourne Theatre Company (Australia); The Great Moment at Seattle Rep (world premiere) and Antigones at the O’Neill Play Development Center. She is developing television and movie projects at HBO Max and Scott Free Productions. More at annabziegler.net.
BARRY EDELSTEIN (Director, The Wanderers) is the Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director of The Old Globe, one of the country’s most prominent regional theatres, in San Diego. He is a director, producer, author, and educator. His Globe directing credits include the world premiere of The Wanderers, which the Globe commissioned and developed, The Winter’s Tale, Othello, The Twenty-Seventh Man, the world premiere of Rain, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, Hamlet, the American premiere of Life After, and Romeo and Juliet. He also directed All’s Well That Ends Well as the inaugural production of the Globe for All community tour. Last January he oversaw the Globe’s inaugural Classical Directing Fellowship program, and in 2018 he directed The Tempest with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall. As Director of the Shakespeare Initiative at The Public Theater (2008–2012), Edelstein oversaw all of the company’s Shakespearean productions as well as its educational, community outreach, and artist-training programs. At The Public, he staged the world premiere of The Twenty-Seventh Man, Julius Caesar, The Merchant of Venice, Timon of Athens, and Steve Martin’s WASP and Other Plays. He was also Associate Producer of The Public’s Broadway production of The Merchant of Venice starring Al Pacino. From 1998 to 2003 he was Artistic Director of Classic Stage Company. His book Thinking Shakespeare, which was rereleased in a second edition in 2018, is the standard text on American Shakespearean acting. He is also the author of Bardisms: Shakespeare for All Occasions. He is a graduate of Tufts University and the University of Oxford, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar.
Additional programming and information regarding Roundabout’s Off-Broadway season will be announced in the near future.
We gratefully acknowledge the Roundabout Leaders for New Works: Alec Baldwin, James Costa and John Archibald, Linda L. D’Onofrio, Peggy and Mark Ellis, Jodi Glucksman, Sylvia Golden, Jeanne Hagerty, Angelina Lippert, K. Myers, Katheryn Patterson and Tom Kempner, Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater, Ira Pittelman, Mary Solomon, Lauren and Danny Stein, Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, and The Tow Foundation.
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ABOUT THE NEW PLAY INITIATIVE
Through the New Play Initiative, Roundabout proves its devotion to the development and production of new works by significant writers and artists. The Roundabout Underground program in particular, provides substantial artistic and financial resources to emerging playwrights to stage their debut productions in New York and on Roundabout’s stages. In addition to producing their first play, writers receive a commission for a future play, showing a level of commitment to writers’ careers and the future of theatre in New York that is unparalleled. The New Play Initiative has discovered and brought audiences some of the most important new voices in theatre and is dedicated to creating a diverse canon for the future of theatre.
Roundabout Theatre Company celebrates the power of theatre by spotlighting classics from the past, cultivating new works of the present, and educating minds for the future. A not-for-profit company, Roundabout fulfills that mission by producing familiar and lesser-known plays and musicals; discovering and supporting talented playwrights; reducing the barriers that can inhibit theatergoing; collaborating with a diverse team of artists; building educational experiences; and archiving over five decades of production history.
Roundabout Theatre Company presents a variety of plays, musicals and new works on its five stages: Broadway’s American Airlines Theatre, Studio 54 and Stephen Sondheim Theatre, and Off-Broadway’s Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre, which houses the Laura Pels Theatre and Black Box Theatre.
American Airlines is the official airline of Roundabout Theatre Company. Roundabout productions are supported, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.
Roundabout’s 2019-2020 Broadway season includes A Soldier’s Play by Charles Fuller, starring David Alan Grier and Blair Underwood, directed by Kenny Leon; Birthday Candles, by Noah Haidle, starring Debra Messing, directed by Vivienne Benesch; Caroline, or Change, by Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori, starring Sharon D Clarke, directed by Michael Longhurst.
In 2020, Roundabout presents new works Off-Broadway, including: 72 Miles to Go… by Hilary Bettis, directed by Jo Bonney; …what the end will be by Jiréh Breon Holder, directed by Margot Bordelon; Darling Grenadine, book, music & lyrics by Daniel Zaitchik, directed and choregraphed by Michael Berresse; and Exception to the Rule by Dave Harris, directed by Miranda Haymon.