Salt Lake Acting Company's 49th season continues with the Utah premiere of Lucas Hnath's A DOLL'S HOUSE, PART 2. The 8-time Tony Award-nominated play is being produced in SLAC’s Upstairs Theatre February 5 through March 8, 2020.
“Whether you view Nora’s actions at the end of A DOLL’S HOUSE –‘Part 1’—as radical or an act of #selfcare, ‘Part 2’ examines the aftermath and reality of her choice,” said SLAC’s Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming. “It’s why I was drawn to this work. So often plays with a feminist message are anything but subtle or balanced. A DOLL’S HOUSE, PART 2 is nuanced, yet bold, and heartbreaking, and comedic. I adore it and our audiences will as well.”
Stacey Jenson* makes her SLAC debut as Nora Helmer. She has been seen elsewhere in GIDION’S KNOT (Pinnacle). Jenson is joined by Paul Mulder* (SEEING THE ELEPHANT) as Torvald, Annette Wright (BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON, SATURDAY’S VOYEUR) as Anne Marie, and Rachael Merlot, who is also making her SLAC debut with this production, as Emmy.
Directing the production is SATURDAY’S VOYEUR creator Nancy Borgenicht, who has been an integral part of Salt Lake Acting Company since 1974. Her previous directing credits at SLAC include ANGELS IN AMERICA, WHITE MAN DANCING, OLEANNA, WOMEN AND WALLACE, CABBIES, COWBOYS AND THE TREE OF THE WEEPING VIRGIN, SATURDAY'S VOYEUR (from 1993 to 2003) and 2018’s STAG’S LEAP.
In reference to Borgenicht, Fleming stated, “Because the play so masterfully blends comedy, drama, classic characters, and a modern sensibility, I knew that the perfect person to lead the production would be SATURDAY’S VOYEUR Co-Creator Nancy Borgenicht. She hired me in 1998, entrusting me with growing our audience base. Having Nancy at the helm is a wonderful full-circle moment, not unlike Nora’s return to Torvald and her children.”
Borgenicht is joined on the creative team by Erik Reichert (Scenic Design), La Beene (Costume Design), Matt Taylor** (Lighting Design), Katelyn Limber (Sound Design), and Sara Shouse (Hair Design). Heather Nowlin serves as Dramaturg and Jennie Sant* is Production Stage Manager.
A DOLL’S HOUSE, PART 2 runs February 5 through March 8, 2020. Tickets can be obtained via tickets.saltlakeactingcompany.org, in person at the SLAC box office, or by calling 801.363.7522.
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
**The lighting designer of A DOLL'S HOUSE, PART 2 is represented by United Scenic Artists Local 829 of the IATSE
Salt Lake Acting Company--Utah’s leading destination for brave, contemporary theatre--presents the world premiere of FORM OF A GIRL UKNOWN by Charly Evon Simpson from October 16 through November 17, 2019.
Amali is twelve years old, she is wise, and she is fascinated – by A Midsummer Night’s Dream; by her changing body; by the story of the children killed in the woods. With humor, magic, blood, and fire, this play is not your typical coming-of-age story.
Leading the cast (in her Salt Lake Acting Company debut) is Amanda Morris*, who plays Amali. A resident of New York City, she was previously seen by Utah audiences in Lyric Rep’s A RAISIN IN THE SUN.
Daisy Allred, Aaliyah Ann*, and Bradley Hatch all return to the SLAC Upstairs Theatre, having appeared in SATURDAY’S VOYEUR 2019. They play Marina, Charise, and Finn, respectively. Latoya Cameron* (THE CAKE) and Susanna Florence* (PTC’s SWEAT) return to FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN after appearing in the workshop production last summer. Cameron plays Ma and Florence plays Dr G/Policewoman.
The production is helmed by Lark and WP Theatre alum Melissa Crespo, who also directed a form of a girl unknown workshop at Westport County Playhouse earlier this year.
Crespo is joined on the creative team by Shoko Kambara (Scenic Design), Alicia Washington (Costume Design), Jessica Greenberg (Lighting Design), Jennifer Jackson (Sound Design), Linda Brown (Specialty Prop Design). The production is stage managed by Jennie Sant.
FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN runs October 16 through November 17, 2019. Tickets can be obtained via tickets.saltlakeactingcompany.org, in person at the SLAC box office, or by calling 801.363.7522.
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SLAC's production of HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE has been moved to spring 2021. Updated casting will be announced at a later date.
Casting is complete for Salt Lake Acting Company’s upcoming production of HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE by Sarah Ruhl. The play receives its Utah premiere after an Off-Broadway world premiere at New York City’s Lincoln Center Theater in 2017.
A dinner party gone wild. Two married couples invite a mysterious woman (who hunts her own meat) along with her two lovers to a New Year’s Eve party. From the adventurous and provocative Sarah Ruhl comes a comedy that pushes the boundaries of marriage and the limits of friendship.
The production welcomes the return of SLAC veterans Alexandra Harbold* (HAND TO GOD) as Jane, Jeanette Puhich (RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN) as George, Topher Rasmussen* (FUN HOME) as Freddie, and Matt Sincell* (TRIBES) as Michael. Making their SLAC debuts are J. Todd Adams* as Paul, Dominque DeFelice as Jenna, Sceri Sioux Ivers* as Pip, and Lance Rasmussen* as David.
The production is directed by Adrianne Moore, whose previous SLAC directing credits include RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN and CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION. She is joined on the creative team by Michael Horejsi (set design), Sara Shouse (costume design), Jaron Kent Hermansen (lighting design), Cynthia Kehr Rees (sound design), and Linda and Glenn Brown (specialty prop design).
HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE plays in SLAC’s Upstairs Theatre April 8 through May 10, 2020. Tickets are available at tickets.saltlakeactingcompany.org, in person at the SLAC box office, or by calling (801)-363-7522.
*Member of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
Summer, 1998. Once popular, Arrowhead Community Pool has seen membership decline for years. Retired pool president Dorothy Wilson blames video games and air-conditioning. But when new pool president Freddie Rosedale abolishes Dorothy's longstanding alcohol ban and installs a frozen margarita machine, the place comes back to life, and a battle begins. SWIMMING POOL is a dark ensemble comedy about American excess and restraint on the cusp of the 21st Century.
Featured in the one-night-only reading are Sean Carter, Barb Gandy, Tamara Johnson-Howell, Dan Larrinaga, Tito Livas*, Morgan Lund*, Kimiko Miyashima*, Nicki Nixon, and Lane Richins*. Robin Wilks-Dunn (I’LL EAT YOU LAST, GOOD PEOPLE) serves as director, Natalie Keezer will read stage directions, and Katelyn Limber* is stage manager.
Founded in 1994, Salt Lake Acting Company’s New Play Sounding Series (NPSS) continues its record-breaking 25th year with Will Snider’s SWIMMING POOL. The NPSS is the longest-running play reading series in Utah. Past works that have been workshopped in the NPSS to later receive full productions at SLAC (and elsewhere) include SILENT DANCER and HARBUR GATE by Kathleen Cahill, MERCURY by Steve Yockey, STAG’S LEAP by Sharon Olds, THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY OF STEVE JOBS by Mike Daisey, A SLIGHT DISCOMFORT by Jeff Metcalf, and THE RECEPTIONIST by Adam Bock. Elaine Jarvik’s FOUR WOMEN TALKING ABOUT THE MAN UNDER THE SHEET, featured during last season’s NPSS, will receive its world premiere at SLAC in 2020.
SWIMMING POOL is free and open to the public. Reservations are required and can be made via SLAC’s website or by calling 801.363.7522.
How do you “introduce” Justin Ivie? The answer is, you don’t need to, because his three-decades-long career (both off-stage and on) in the Utah theatre community is well-known. Whether it's his 70+ professional stage credits, which include a staggering eleven appearances in SATURDAY’S VOYEUR, his stage management work (most recently last season’s THE WOLVES and SILENT DANCER) or his directorial work (THE CAKE), Ivie is the very definition of a consummate theatre professional.
"I'm overjoyed to be taking on this new and exciting role for the best little theater company in the world!” said Ivie. “SLAC is a home to me, and I look forward to fostering that home for many other artists so that they can flourish and bring their best work to our audiences. Thanks to the entire SLAC community for welcoming me and giving me this space to create and to succeed."
As Producing Director, Justin will oversee all logistical and technical aspects of SLAC’s productions, working closely with Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming to bring top-knotch contemporary theatre to Utah audiences.
"I proudly welcome Justin Ivie as SLAC’s Producing Director," said Fleming. "Over the past 15 years, I have had the pleasure of working with Justin as an actor, director, stage manager, and asst. prop designer. As an effective leader and collaborator, he shows tremendous respect to the craft, script, writers, directors, actors, and all key personnel involved in a production. I’m happy to work beside Justin in presenting high-quality productions in our intimate spaces and advancing the creation of new plays."
Please join us in welcoming Justin! He can be reached at Justin [at] saltlakeactingcompany [dot] org.
SLAC's 49th season recently kicked off with Will Snider's political thriller, DEATH OF A DRIVER. The production was workshopped in SLAC's 2018 Playwrights' Lab and returns for a full production after its Off-Broadway world premiere this past spring.
Reprising their roles from the lab production are Cassandra Stokes-Wylie* (Sarah) and Patrick J. Ssenjovu* (Kennedy/Man). Stokes-Wylie appeared most recently in SLAC’s Chapel Theatre during last season’s A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE GYNECOLOGIC ONCOLOGY UNIT AT MEMORIAL SLOAN KETTERING CANCER CENTER OF NEW YORK CITY and Ssenjovu makes his official SLAC debut after appearing in DEATH OF A DRIVER’S world premiere at Urban Stages.
“Death of a Driver spans nearly twenty years through storytelling that moves with an electric connection and velocity. We’re drawn into the bond of trust and friendship at the play’s heart, as it’s influenced by the political forces surrounding the two characters,” said the production’s director Alexandra Harbold. “It is thrilling to have Cassie and Patrick reuniting in Death of a Driver, and I am so thankful that we have the opportunity to build on the foundational work they created in the 2018 Playwrights’ Lab.”
Joining Harbold on the creative team are Shawn Fisher** (set design), Kerstin Hallows (costume design), William Peterson (light design), Jason Jensen (sound design) and William Richardson* (stage manager)
DEATH OF A DRIVER runs now through October 20. Tickets can be obtained online, in person at the SLAC box office, or by calling 801.363.7522.
**The set designer of DEATH OF A DRIVER is represented by United Scenic Artists Local USA 829 of the IATSE.
Following on the heels of an incredibly beloved season, which included audience favorites A FUNNY THING…, THE WOLVES, PINKALICIOUS THE MUSICAL, and THE CAKE—SLAC’s 49th season offering is comprised of six works never before produced in Utah. Two of the productions are receiving world premieres.
The season opens with Will Snider’s African-set drama DEATH OF A DRIVER, which was workshopped through SLAC’s Playwrights’ Lab last year. Snider’s Utah premiere will be followed by the world premiere of FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN by Charly Evon Simpson. FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN has the distinction of being awarded a David Ross Fetzer Foundation Emerging Artists grant, which allowed for the play to receive a weeklong workshop at SLAC in 2018.
We'll kick off our second decade of providing unparalleled professional children’s theatre to Salt Lake audiences with the Utah premiere of PETE THE CAT, a new musical adaptation of the popular book series by James Dean and Kimberly Dean. It has been adapted for the stage by Sarah Hammond and Will Aronson.
2020 will see the Utah premiere of the Tony Award-winning A DOLL’S HOUSE, PART 2 by Lucas Hnath, followed by Sarah Ruhl’s HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE. The season will conclude with the 42nd iteration of Utah’s longest-running theatre tradition, SATURDAY’S VOYEUR, by Allen Nevins and Nancy Borgenicht.
“When looking to further SLAC’s dedication to showcasing exciting new works for Utah audiences, we knew we must continue to be thoughtful about the current political and social climates,” said Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming. “My team and I sought stories that would continue to captivate, touch the heart, illuminate, and ultimately inspire our very discerning audiences. We’re confident that these six new plays accomplish that goal and then some.”
Additionally, for the first time in the theatre’s 49-year history, the lineup of directors will be entirely female. Returning to SLAC are Alexandra Harbold (THE WOLVES, CLIMBING WITH TIGERS); Penelope Caywood (PINKALICIOUS THE MUSICAL, HOW I BECAME A PIRATE); Adrianne Moore (CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION, 4000 MILES); SLAC Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming (SATURDAY’S VOYEUR); and Nancy Borgenicht (ANGELS IN AMERICA, SATURDAY’S VOYEUR). Making her SLAC debut will be Ars Nova and Atlantic Theatre Company alum Melissa Crespo.
In regard to SLAC’s first-ever lineup of all-female directors, Fleming stated, “This season, we examined each of our productions and sought the best storytellers to bring each to its fullest life. It just so happens that these productions will be best-served by these fierce females at the helm.”
Orders for season tickets are currently being accepted. For more information, visit our season subscription page or call our Audience Services team at 801.363.7522.
DEATH OF A DRIVER
By Will Snider | Directed by Alexandra Harbold
September 11-October 20, 2019
When Sarah, an American engineer, moves to Kenya to build a road that will shape the country’s future, her charismatic African driver, Kennedy, becomes her first employee and trusted friend. But when a dispute over a local election lands him in jail, she questions the integrity of their alliance. DEATH OF A DRIVER is a sharp political drama about the complexities of “doing good” abroad.
FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN
By Charly Evon Simpson | Directed by Melissa Crespo
October 16-November 17, 2019
Navigating adolescence is not for the faint of heart, but Amali’s got this. She is twelve years old, she is wise, and she is fascinated – by A Midsummer Night’s Dream; by her changing body; by the story of the children killed in the woods. With humor, magic, blood, and fire, FORM OF A GIRL UNKNOWN is not your typical coming-of-age story.
PETE THE CAT*
By Sarah Hammond and Will Aronson | Directed by Penelope Caywood
December 6-30, 2019
A Utah premiere based on the popular children’s book and Amazon Prime series! When Pete the Cat gets caught jamming after bedtime, the cat-catcher sends him to live with the Biddle family to learn his manners. But for Pete, life is an adventure no matter where you wind up, and the minute he walks in the door, he gets the whole family rocking. The whole family that is, except for young Jimmy Biddle, the most organized second grader on planet Earth. But when Jimmy draws a blank in art class during the last week of school, it turns out Pete is the perfect pal to help him out. Together, they set out on a mission to help Jimmy conquer second grade art, and along the way, they both learn a little something new about inspiration.
*Season subscription add-on
A DOLL’S HOUSE, PART 2
By Lucas Hnath | Directed by Nancy Borgenicht
February 5-March 8, 2020
HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE
By Sarah Ruhl | Directed by Adrianne Moore
April 8-May 10, 2020
SATURDAY’S VOYEUR 2020
By Allen Nevins & Nancy Borgenicht | Directed by Cynthia Fleming
June 17-August 23, 2020
SLAC’s ever-original musical satire and Utah’s biggest summer party. Not to mention, one of the longest-running shows of its kind in the nation. Now in its 42nd year of raucous, tongue-in-cheek fun.
NOTE: Due to an unforeseen scheduling conflict with our previously announced line-up, HOW TO TRANSCEND A HAPPY MARRIAGE will now be directed by Adrianne Moore.