Public Lab: 2010/11 season announced



The Public Theater has announced the line-up for the 2010-2011 Public LAB season. Beginning in October, the fourth season will include a world premiere by Richard Nelson, a world premiere by Public Theater Emerging Writer alumna Mona Mansour, and a New York premiere by Jonathan Marc Sherman. This year, Public LAB will move from the 99-seat Shiva Theater to the 275-seat Anspacher Theater.



The season will kick off in the fall with That Hopey Changey Thing, written and directed by Richard Nelson (26 Oct - 14 Nov 2010). In the spring, Public LAB will present Urge For Going by Mona Mansour, directed by Hal Brooks (25 Mar - 17 Apr 2011) and Knickerbocker by Jonathan Marc Sherman, directed by Pippin Parker (6 - 29 May 2011). An additional Public LAB show, opening this winter, will be announced at a later date.

Public LAB, conceived in association with LAByrinth Theater Company, is an annual series of new plays that lets New Yorkers see more work from The Public in scaled-down productions. Public LAB allows The Public to support more artists, and gives audiences immediate access to new plays in development.

“Nelson, Sherman and up-and-comer Mona Mansour bring us three distinct yet equally powerful plays that will entertain and challenge,” said Associate Artistic Director Mandy Hackett. “We are thrilled to share the work of three singular and enormously talented writers with our audiences in Public LAB.”

  • That Hopey Changey Thing (World Premiere)
    Written and Directed by Richard Nelson
    Dates: 26 Oct - 14 Nov 2010
    Press opening: 2 Nov 2010

    Synopsis: Election day, November 2, 2010. Uncle Benjamin’s dog has died and his nieces and nephew have gathered for dinner in Rhinebeck, New York, to surprise him with a new one. As they anxiously wait for the polls to close, the Apple family discusses memory, manners, and politics.

Richard Nelson (Playwright and Director) is the recipient of a Tony Award, two other Tony nominations, an Olivier Award for Best Play, another Olivier nomination for Best Comedy, two Obie Awards, the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, a Lortel Award, Time Out/London Award for Best Play, An Academy Award from The American Academy of Arts and Letters, the PEN/Laura Pels 'Master Playwright' Award and others. His plays includes 'Conversations In Tusculum,' 'Frank’s Home,' 'Rodney’s Wife,' 'Franny’s Way,' 'Madame Melville,' 'Goodnight Children Everywhere,' 'The General From America,' 'Left,' 'New England,' 'Misha’s Party' (with Alexander Gelman), 'Columbus and The Discovery of Japan,' 'Two Shakespearean Actors,' 'Some Americans Abroad,' 'Principia Scriptoraie,' 'The Vennia Notes,' among many others.

  • Urge For Going (World Premiere)
    Written by Mona Mansour
    Directed by Hal Brooks
    Dates: 25 Mar - 17 Apr 2011
    Press opening: tba

    Synopsis: Jamila, a 17-year-old Palestinian girl growing up in a Lebanese refugee camp, is desperate to escape the small and impoverished world she calls home but her greatest source of inspiration may also prove to be her biggest obstacle.

Mona Mansour (Playwright). Her play 'Urge For Going' was read at The Public Theater’s New Work Now! series, Theater J in Washington, DC, and at the 2010 Ojai Playwrights Conference. She completed a year in the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group, where her play 'The Hour of Feeling' was read in The Public’s Spotlight Series. As an actor, Mona was a member of the Sunday Show at L.A.’s famed Groundlings Theater. Her first play, 'Me and the S.L.A.,' focused on her ongoing obsession with Patricia Hearst and the Symbionese Liberation Army and was performed at the Groundlings and Seattle Fringe Festival.'Girl Scouts of America' (co-written with Andrea Berloff) was read at NYTW, The Public's New Work Now! series, and was produced in NYC Fringe 2006. Television writing credits: “Dead Like Me” (Showtime) and “Queens Supreme” (CBS). Mansour was named One of 50 to Watch by the Dramatists Guild.

Hal Brooks (Director) is a Brooklyn-based freelance director and the Associate Artistic Director the Ojai Playwrights Conference. He directed the Obie-winning 'No Child…' by Nilaja Sun as well as the world premiere of Will Eno's Pulitzer Prize finalist 'Thom Pain (based on nothing).' His recent projects include 'Picasso at the Lapin Agile' (Two River), Sam Hunter’s 'The Whale' (PlayPenn) and Mona Mansour’s 'Urge For Going' (Ojai Playwrights Conference). A Drama League Fellow, Brooks is also a member of the Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab, SDC and a recipient of the 2007-09 NEA TCG Career Development Program for Directors.

  • Knickerbocker (New York Premiere)
    Written by Jonathan Marc Sherman
    Directed by Pippin Parker
    Dates: 6 - 29 May 2011
    Press opening: tba

    Synopsis: "Are you ready?" Jerry confronts this question from the womb of his favorite restaurant booth while the months pass by and the son he and his wife Pauline are expecting grows from the size of a peach to the size of...a baby. As the due date approaches, can friends and family members help Jerry feel prepared, or just feel worse, like some un-anonymous sperm donor terrified of making the transition from being the son of a father to being the father of a son?

Jonathan Marc Sherman (Playwright) is the author of plays including 'Serendipity and Serenity,' 'Women and Wallace,' 'Jesus on the Oil Tank,' 'Veins and Thumbtacks,' 'Sophistry,' 'Sons and Fathers,' 'Wonderful Time,' 'Evolution' and 'Things We Want.'

Pippin Parker (Director for Knickerbocker) is a founding member and former artistic director of Naked Angels Theater Company, where he'll be directing Bekah Brunstetter's new play 'A Long and Happy Life' in 2011. He recently directed George Packer’s critically acclaimed play 'Betrayed' at The Culture Project and a new version of 'References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot' by Jose Rivera for ABroad Stage Company. He has written numerous works, including radio plays for NPR and episodes of the animated series “The Tick.” He is currently the chair of the graduate Playwriting Department at the New School for Drama at the New School University.

In its first three years, Public LAB has produced a diverse range of works by emerging and established playwrights, including 'Mom, How Did You Meet The Beatles?' by Adrienne Kennedy, 'The Poor Itch' by John Belluso, 'Paris Commune' by Steven Cosson and Michael Friedman, 'The Fever Chart' by Naomi Wallace, 'The Good Negro' by Tracey Scott Wilson, 'Penalties and Interest' by Rebecca Cohen, 'Sweet Storm 'by Scott Hudson, Philip Roth in 'Khartoum' by David Bar Katz, 'Tales of an Urban Indian' by Darrell Dennis, 'Knives and Other Sharp Objects' by Raúl Castillo, 'Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson' by Alex Timbers and Michael Friedman, 'Father Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 8 & 9)' by Suzan-Lori Parks, 'Juan and John' by Roger Guenveur Smith and 'Neighbors' by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins.