UPDATE! There has been a venue change to the New York Theatre Workshop and a change in the program. More details can be found here.
Neil LaBute, Halley Feiffer and More to Address Censorship with World Premiere Plays
In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris, the political controversy surrounding the release of The Interview, and continued suppression of plays, books, and art in American schools, libraries and museums, the battle for freedom of speech and expression is more essential than ever. Planet Connections Theatre Festivity will present an evening of world premiere plays by Erik Ehn, Halley Feiffer, Israel Horovitz and Neil LaBute addressing censorship in the arts in Playwrights for a Cause, to be held at 7:30pm on June 14, 2015 at the Sheen Center, located at 18 Bleecker Street in New York City.
The performances will be followed by a talkback with NCAC and all four playwrights on issues surrounding censorship in the arts. The event concludes with an Opening Night Party which will also celebrate the 2015 Planet Connections Theatre Festivity, which begins June 15. Speeches will be made by a handful of the 2015 artists regarding their work as artists and the importance of art as a tool for social justice.
“I’m so happy to be working on a project like this, one that will not only be a fun night of theater but will also directly benefit the National Coalition Against Censorship,” said Neil LaBute. “The NCAC is doing really important work at a time when people are actively striving to take away some of our most basic freedoms. I, for one, feel that these are the front lines for an artist–when you are asked to write/fight for what you’ve said you believe in. It is no longer enough to pay lip service to these ideas–it’s time to stand up and be counted.”
The world premiere plays include:
Three Speech by Erik Ehn
Directed by Glory Kadigan
A woman dreams her way through a free-speech scenario, cascading through levels of rage and recollection. What is the relationship between free and the uniquely, preciously valued?
A Play About New Mexico by Halley Feiffer
Directed by GT Upchurch
A young female playwright meets with the Artistic Director of a prominent theater company. The Artistic Director has commissioned a script from her. Or so she thinks.
Breaking Philip Glass by Israel Horovitz
Directed by Glory Kadigan
Paul confronts an art gallery’s manager about recently-discovered erotic photos to be featured in the gallery’s upcoming exhibition. Paul’s mother is the main female model in the photos, shot 50 years earlier. The gallery does not have permission from Paul’s family to present the photos – but that’s not going to stop the gallery from exhibiting and promoting previously-unseen work by a world renowned photographer.
Mohammad Gets A Boner by Neil LaBute
Directed by Marco Calvani
The prophet “Mohammed” stands on a barren stage, recalling the first time he made love to a white woman. Is this reality or a theatrical convention? Where do the lines between ‘satire’ and ‘censorship’ intersect or is nothing sacred when it comes to the theater?