Author: primarystagestheatercompany

Discord: The Crossword Puzzle!

Crossword fans and history buffs will love this special puzzle inspired by The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter. Put your knowledge of these three historical figures to the test in this challenging puzzle.

Discord Crossword2

Download a printable PDF version here. Download the solution here. (But no cheating!)

Performances of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter run September 19 – October 22, 2017 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Click here for tickets and more information.

 

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Enter the Mind of Celebrated Costume Designer David Hyman

Ever wondered how costumes transform from small sparks of inspiration into the fully finished garments you see onstage? David Hyman, the costume designer of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord
by Scott Carter, gave us an exclusive sneak peek into his personal drawings and research for the three iconic characters before the play’s New York Premiere.

Check out David Hyman’s sketches and inspiration behind the costume designs of Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Leo Tolstoy.

Discord Drawings 1

Sketch of Thomas Jefferson alongside various portraits of the third President and his contemporaries in distinguishable attire.

 

Discord Drawings 2

Colorful portrayal of Jefferson decked out in green next to textured and patterned fabric swatches.

 

Discord Drawings 3

Draft of Charles Dickens with pictures of the famous writer in his trademark bow tie.

 

Discord Drawings 4

Drawing of Dickens draped in purple with an assortment of unique fabric influences.

 

Discord Drawings 5

Depiction of Leo Tolstoy in traditional Russian garments beside the images that inspired the design.

 

Discord Drawings 6

Illustration of Tolstoy in classic peasant attire featuring a belted loose-fitting shirt and trousers with distinct red and brown fabrics.

 

Discord Drawings 9

A close up of the of fabric samples for Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Leo Tolstoy’s costumes.

Performances of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter run September 19 – October 22, 2017 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Click here for tickets and more information.

Special Talkbacks Scheduled for …Discord

Scott Carter (Executive Producer of “Real Time with Bill Maher”), and playwright of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord will lead several post-show talkbacks with a number of special guests.

Scott Carter Talkbacks for Discord

The lineup is currently as follows, but is subject to change.

Saturday, September 30 at 2pm – Iconic Performance Artist & Author Karen Finley

Saturday, October 7 at 2pm – New York Times Columnist & CNBC “Squawk Box” Host Andrew Ross Sorkin

Saturday, October 7 at 8pm – Ex-New York Times Ethicist & “Person, Place Thing” Host Randy Cohen

Thursday, October 12 at 8pm – Comedian, Author & Playwright Lewis Black

Friday, October 13 at 8pm – Thrive Global Founder & CEO Arianna Huffington

Saturday, October 14 at 8pm – New Yorker Contributing Writer & Author Maria Konnikova

Sunday, October 15 at 3pm – Ex-U.S. Representative Rick Lazio (R-NY)

Sunday, October 21 at 8pm – Progressive Radio Talk Show Host & Author Thom Hartmann

Sunday, October 22 at 3pm – “Curb Your Enthusiasm” Star & Comedian Susie Essman

Traditional Talkback Performances for Discord

We will also continue our traditional talkbacks led by a member of the Primary Stages artistic staff on October 4 and October 11.  These evenings  opportunity for the audience to engage in a dialogue with the artists in our productions.

Performances of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter run September 19 – October 22, 2017 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Click here for tickets and more information.

Meet the Cast: of …Discord

The first show of our 2017/18 season is The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter. Meet the three actors who will portray these historical figures and debate everything from religion to literature to marriage in this New York Premiere.

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DUANE BOUTTÉ (Charles Dickens) played Harlem Renaissance artist “Bruce Nugent, young” in Rodney Evans’ film Brother to Brother, and “Bostonia” in Nigel Finch’s Stonewall (’96). Boutté appeared on Broadway in Parade and Carousel (Lincoln Center), and Off-Broadway in The Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin and as “Louis Chauvin” in The Heliotrope Bouquet by Scott Joplin and Louis Chauvin (Playwrights Horizons).

Michael Laurence

MICHAEL LAURENCE (Thomas Jefferson) previously appeared at Primary Stages in Opus and The Morini Strad. Also: Talk Radio (Broadway), Hamlet in Bed (playwright/performer, Rattlestick), Appropriate (Signature), The Few (Rattlestick), Genet’s Splendid’s (La Colline, Paris), Poison (Origin), Krapp 39 (playwright/performer, DramaDesk nomination),“John Proctor” in The Crucible (Hartford), Starbuck in The Rainmaker (Arena).TV: “Shades of Blue” (recurring), “Damages,” “The Good Wife,” “Elementary,” others.

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THOM SESMA (Count Leo Tolstoy) has appeared in leading roles on and Off-Broadway, and at some of the nation’s leading regional theaters, including The Old Globe, Yale Rep, Cincinnati Playhouse, Arena Stage, McCarter, and Baltimore Centre Stage. Most recent credit: John Doyle’s acclaimed revival of Pacific Overtures (Classic Stage Company.) Television: “Madam Secretary,” “Jessica Jones,” “Gotham,” “The Good Wife,” “Person Of Interest,” “Over/Under,” “Single Ladies,” and more. Proud member AEA and SAG-AFTRA.

Performances of The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter run September 19 – October 22, 2017 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Click here for tickets and more information.

Experiencing Pride and Prejudice Two Ways

Pride and Prejudice, adapted by Kate Hamill, is a co-production between the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival and Primary Stages. To celebrate the show’s opening at Hudson Valley, here are a few fun facts about how experiencing the show at each performance venue will differ.

The Venue

Primary Stages performs at the Cherry Lane Theatre which is a traditional theater space with 179 seats.

The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival performs in an open air tent at the Boscobel House and Gardens,  with a natural backdrop, 540 seats, and a stage floor made of sand.

Your Visit

The Cherry Lane Theatre is located in Greenwich Village. It is a short walk away from beautiful Washington Square Park, and is surrounded by amazing restaurants, bars, and clubs. It is a short walk from the Christopher Street Station on the 1 line or the West 4th Station on the A,B,C,D,E,F, and M lines, which are easily accessible by subway from all over NYC.

Patrons can arrive at the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival up to 2 hours before the performance to picnic or tour the grounds. There is also a café for those who wish to purchase a meal instead of bringing one. It is about an hour and a half by car from central Manhattan, and an additional hour by train. On select Saturdays there is a round-trip bus from Lincoln Center organized by the festival.

The Seasons

2017/18 Season at Primary Stages:

The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter running September to October

Pride and Prejudice by Kate Hamill running November to December

A Walk with Mr. Heifetz by James Inverne running January to February

Feeding the Dragon by Sharon Washington running March to April

 

Running in repertory until September at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival:

Pride and Prejudice, adapted by Kate Hamill

The Book of Will, by Lauren Gunderson

Twelfth Night, by William Shakespeare

The General from America, by Richard Nelson

Love’s Labour’s Lost, by William Shakespeare

Talk Backs

Primary Stages will offer post-performance talk backs on select performances of Pride and Prejudice. The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival also offers pre-performance talks for Pride and Prejudice.

To Tie the Knot or Not: The LGBT Community Debates

In Daniel’s Husband, the issue of gay marriage is an important theme, and a divisive issue for partners Daniel and Mitchell, who have different views on the topic. In the aftermath of the legalization gay marriage across all 50 states, many gay and lesbian couples face pressures to marry. So what are people’s reasons for tying the knot… Or not?

Daniel's Husband at Primary Stages

Ryan Spahn and Matthew Montelongo in the Primary Stages production of Daniel’s Husband. Photo by James Leynse. 

 

PRO: They want to be accepted.

“Couples as well as individuals in the LGBT community will seem less “different” from heterosexual lifestyle, so straight couples and individuals will be more inclined to accept homosexual couples into their communities.”

CON: They don’t want to be involved in a previously discriminatory institution.

“I didn’t want to be a part of any club that wouldn’t have me as a member.”

PRO: It could decrease teen suicide rates.

“We need to explain to younger generations that being different is not a social disability, so that they will never feel the need to take their own lives because they are gay.”

CON: They want to remain unique.

“We’ve got marriage, it’s called a civil partnership and I rejoice in the fact that people like me who are different from straight people can do something they can’t. I relish that.”

PRO: They want to adopt children.

“Many agencies will only release children to “married” couples, therefore rejecting stable, loving, homosexual parents.”

CON: They can gain all the benefits elsewhere.

“The beauty of a civil union or domestic partnership is that it can offer both straight and gay couples the benefits that traditionally married couples receive without having to actually get married, an act that some may find ‘patriarchal’ and ‘anachronistic.’”

PRO: They want hospital visitation and medical rights.

“Legalizing gay marriage will allow gay couples hospital visitation rights and respect the validity of their marriage by letting them make medical decisions on behalf of their spouses.”

CON: They fear it will end poorly.

“Legba Carrefour… calls it a “destructive way of life” that produces broken families.”

PRO: They do it… because they can!

“Gay people who are in favor of same-sex marriage believe anything short of marriage is not equality.”

CON: They don’t feel it will change anything.

“We love each other and have lived together for 30 years,” he said. “Why do we need to get married?”

 

The Primary Stages production of Daniel’s Husband runs until April 28, 2017 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. For tickets and more information, visit our website.

Primary Stages Profile: Taylor Gregory, Primary Stages/Fordham MFA, ’17

taylor (1)What was your very first play about?

Chittenango was about a Broadway director who forgets that it’s opening night for his show Jesus Fantastic!

What is your earliest memory of the theater?

When I was young, my cousin Tommy, who is now a priest, would write and stage plays in the basement every Thanksgiving as entertainment for our extended family. All of the cousins had roles and the shows were not very good.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received as a playwright?

Mark Bly told me, “Characters have secrets.”

What makes a good artistic home?

A Keurig, cozy socks, a small guitar and sunflower seeds.

Tell us about your play! What was your inspiration?

A Small Group is about a man who wakes up in rehab with no recollection of how he got there. He is befriended by four other patients who take him into their group where he discovers that his struggles with identity are not uncommon, and that everybody has a story.  The prevalence of addiction in our culture inspired this play.  We all know “someone.”

Taylor Gregory’s A Small Group will be presented April 27-30 at HERE Arts. Click here for more info.