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MTC Announces Lineup for Ernst C. Stiefel “7@7” Reading Series



Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, Artistic Director; Barry Grove, Executive Producer) is pleased to announce the lineup for this spring’s Ernst C. Stiefel “7@7” Reading Series.

The Ernst C. Stiefel Foundation has supported Manhattan Theatre Club’s reading series since 2006.  

The readings kick off Monday, May 3 at 7 PM and will be held on select Mondays through June 21 at New York City Center – Stage I (131 West 55th Street). All readings are free and open to the public, but space is limited and RSVPs are encouraged. To RSVP, please e-mail readings@mtc-nyc.org or call (212) 399-3000 x 4163.

Now in its 12th year, this rehearsed reading series is dedicated to the support and development of innovative new work.

Several plays developed at 7@7  have gone on to full productions at MTC, including David Auburn’s Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning Proof, Joe Hortua’s Between Us, and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s Based on a Totally True Story.  

Series plays that have been produced elsewhere in New York and around the country include Aguirre Sacasa’s Good Boys And True, Stephen Adly GuirgisThe Little Flower of East Orange, Julia Cho’s Durango, David Adjmi’s Stunning, Naomi Iizuka’s Strike-Slip, Adam Rapp’s Red Light Winter, Theresa Rebeck’s The Scene and Eric Simonson’s Fake.

Below is the schedule for the Ernst C. Stiefel “7@7” Reading Series. Please note: each reading starts at 7 PM.

May 3: RETREAT by Steven Levenson directed by Evan Cabnet
Dr. George Hartness has a revolutionary idea about how to treat the psychoses of the women in his care: talk to them.  But while George practices his controversial new treatment, where is his wife?  Who is she talking to?  And what are they telling her? A striking play set in 1906 that examines what drives us crazy and what keeps us sane.  

Steven Levenson is a graduate of Brown University and the 2010 Artist-in-Residence at Ars Nova.  He is currently working on commissions for the Roundabout, Lincoln Center, and Ars Nova.

May 10: NOCTURAMA by Annie Baker directed by Sam Gold
Depressive 26-year-old Brooklynite Skaggs Bernstein returns home to Vermont to live with his mother and videogame-obsessed stepfather.  A chance encounter with a local historical tour guide promises to end his losing streak, but is Skaggs too in love with his own misery to change? A hilarious comedy from the critically acclaimed writer and director of Circle Mirror Transformation.

Annie Baker‘s Circle Mirror Transformation was voted one of the top ten plays of 2009 by the New York Times, the New Yorker, and Time Out New York.  Annie is a Susan Smith Blackburn Prize nominee and is working on commissions for Center Theatre Group and Playwrights Horizons.

May 17: PIECES OF VINCENT by David Watson directed by Lynne Meadow
In London, a young man visits his old piano teacher, and two former lovers meet over cocktails. In Northern Ireland, a Police Officer must deliver shocking news. And in Birmingham, a teenage boy wants his old friend back.  An intricately woven tale of loss and connection from an exciting, new British voice.
David Watson was one of the writers for the Old Vic Theatre’s 24 Hour Plays in 2006 and is currently under commission to the Birmingham Rep and Royal Court Theatre.  

May 24: THERE ARE NO MORE BIG SECRETS by Heidi Schreck directed by Kip Fagan
There was a time when Charles loved Gabe like a brother.  But that was before Gabe disappeared to start a whole new life in Moscow. Now fifteen years later, he’s arrived on Charles’ doorstep seeking refuge for him and his Russian journalist wife. How well does Charles know Gabe?  A bold play examining the mysteries we hide from those we love the most.   

Heidi Schreck’s Creature was recently produced by New Georges and Page 73. Her other plays have been produced or developed by Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, Soho Rep, The Vineyard Theatre, New Georges, and The Foundry.  

June 7: STUNT GIRL book & lyrics by Peter Kellogg, music by David Friedman
Nellie Bly was a groundbreaking investigative journalist, an intrepid world traveler, and a captain of industry — all in a time before women had the right to vote.  She’s brought to tuneful life in a rollicking new musical about her hopes and heartbreak and fascinating times.  

Peter Kellogg has two Tony nominations for book and lyrics to a musical of Anna Karenina (composer Dan Levine). With composer David Friedman, he created Chasing Nicolette, produced at Westport Playhouse, Prince Music Theatre and Village Theatre; Desperate Measures (NYMF Award, Best Book); and Lincoln in Love.   

June 14: HOW THE WORLD BEGAN by Catherine Trieschmann  directed by Carolyn Cantor
When Manhattanite Susan Pierce accepts a job teaching biology in Plainview, Kansas, she’s ready for more than a little culture shock, but she’s not prepared for the violent controversy that seizes the town when she makes an off-handed comment about the origins of the universe. How the World Began was commissioned by Manhattan Theatre Club through the Alfred P. Sloan Initiative.

Catherine Trieschmann’s work has been produced Off-Broadway at the Women’s Project, London’s Bush Theatre, Florida Stage, the Summer Play Festival, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and the New York International Fringe Festival.

June 21: OBLIVION by Carly Mensch directed by Evan Cabnet­
When their seventeen-year-old daughter mysteriously disappears for the weekend, uber-hip Brooklynite parents Pam and Dixon fear the worst.  But the truth turns out to be more shocking than anything they imagined.  A fresh comedy about family, basketball, Pauline Kael, and what it means to ask the big questions.  

Carly Mensch‘s play Margie & Josephine will be produced at Ars Nova in September.  Her other plays include All Hail Hurricane Gordo (Humana Festival, Cleveland Play House), and Len, Asleep in Vinyl (2nd Stage/Uptown Series).  Carly is currently a staff writer on Showtime’s Weeds.

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadow and Executive Producer Barry Grove, MTC has become one of the country’s most prominent and prestigious theatre companies. MTC productions have earned a total of 16 Tony Awards and six Pulitzer Prizes, an accomplishment unparalleled by any New York theatrical institution. MTC has their Broadway home at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and an Off-Broadway theatre at New York City Center – Stage I (131 West 55th Street). Renowned MTC productions include Ruined; The American Plan; Top Girls; Come Back, Little Sheba; Blackbird; Translations; Shining City; Rabbit Hole; Doubt; Proof; The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife; Love! Valour! Compassion!; A Small Family Business; Sylvia; Putting It Together; Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune; Crimes of the Heart; and Ain’t Misbehavin’.
For more information on MTC, please visit www.ManhattanTheatreClub.com.

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