The God Game author Suzanne Bradbeer among winners of third annual showcase of new works at Proctors and Capital Repertory Theatre.
SCHENECTADY, NY—OCT. 14, 2014—William Kennedy’s The Light Of The World anchors NEXT ACT! New Play Summit 3, Nov. 1-3 at Proctors and Capital Repertory Theatre. The play—still in development—has undergone a number of public readings, but this is the first opportunity for fans of the Pulitzer Prize winner’s work to experience the current edition of the much-anticipated script.
NEXT ACT!, a joint venture of theREP and Proctors, brings writers, actors and audience members together for three days of workshops and readings.
The Summit seeks to highlight new works that reflect the values and changes that accompany the growth of Upstate New York’s Tech Valley. A national call for entries in April resulted in more than 300 submissions. After three months of blind reading and analysis by theatre professionals drawn from across the Capital Region and NYC, three plays were selected for staged readings at this year’s NEXT ACT!, including The God Game author Suzanne Bradbeer’s Naked Influence.
“This year, we are honored to be doing a staged reading of William Kennedy’s new play,” says Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill, producing artistic director of theREP. “The Light Of The World lays bear the curse of the Phelan family, whose members dominate the Albany cycle of Mr. Kennedy’s works. We are also thrilled to welcome back Suzanne Bradbeer, whose play The God Game was the hit of the first summit, two years ago.”
Subsequently, The God Game was given a well-praised fully-staged world premiere production at theREP, and has since gone on to productions downstate and in Houston, Texas.
“Three very diverse plays rose to the top from 300 submissions,” says Mancinelli-Cahill. “It’s always interesting to see what writers have on their minds, and this year we had many plays that dealt with drones, surveillance, the recession and university politics.”
Bradbeer’s new play, Naked Influence (Sun, Nov 2 • 1pm, GE Theatre at Proctors), is intended as the second installment in a planned trilogy about politics; it delves into the not so disparate worlds of Washington ethics, pole dancing and damage control.
Gino DiIorio’s Crib (Sat, Nov 1 • 7pm, GE Theatre at Proctors), finds sports, academics and university politics colliding in an engaging potboiler. As the stakes rise, heads roll; and values about race, sex, education and integrity all get put under the dramatic microscope.
Zack Calhoon’s Blanquita (Sun, Nov 2 • 5pm, GE Theatre at Proctors), peppered with Spanish and set in the American Southwest, is a fresh and sexy update of Strindberg’s Miss Julie. When a Senator’s daughter crosses class lines and spends a wild night with the family’s Mexican chauffeur, there are witnesses—and consequences.
Kennedy’s, The Light Of The World (Mon Nov 3 • 7pm, Capital Repertory Theatre), reveals the source of the Phelan curse, which has haunted the characters of Kennedy’s Albany cycle books. The play opens on the occasion of the Phelan matriarch’s funeral, when vagabond and prodigal son Francis returns home and stirs up the deep history and secrets of the family.
In addition to the readings, the three-day summit includes the return of the much-loved event, The First 15 (3 p.m. Sat. Nov. 1, GE Theatre at Proctors), featuring excerpts from the top five semi-finalist plays and a chance for participants to weigh in with their opinions and be in the producer’s seat. A new addition to the summit, Next Voices (1 p.m. Sat. Nov. 1, GE Theatre at Proctors), will introduce three short works written by younger playwrights from Albany High School, to be read by a cast of seasoned actors.
Complimentary refreshments will be available at all events. All events are open to the public and activities take place at GE Theatre at Proctors, 432 State Street, Schenectady and Capital Repertory Theatre, 111 N. Pearl Street, Albany.
Tickets for a full day’s events are $15, $10 for students (with I.D., not available online). Tickets are for general seating, first come, first served basis. Some events sell out. For tickets and information call TICKETS BY PROCTORS at 455-SHOW (455-7469).
Next Act! New Play Summit 3 is made possible, in part, by a legacy gift from Samson O.A. Ullmann, professor of English at Union College, 1957-1992.