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PRESS ROOM

Press Releases

THE VISITOR

PRESS RELEASES

With heart, humor, and lush new songs, Pulitzer Prize and Tony-winning team Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey and Kwame Kwei-Armah bring their soul-stirring new musical based on the acclaimed independent film, THE VISITOR by Thomas McCarthy, to The Public for its World Premiere. Widowed and living alone, Walter is a college professor whose life has lost a sense of purpose. When Tarek, a vivacious drummer, and Zainab, an iron-willed jewelry maker, enter his life in the most unexpected circumstances, Walter is swept up into their struggle to stay in an America that they have made their home, but seeks to cast them out. Tony winner Daniel Sullivan directs this unforgettable new musical about friends and lovers caught between two worlds.

The complete cast of THE VISITOR features Jacqueline Antaramian (Mouna), Robert Ariza (Ensemble), Anthony Chan (Ensemble), Alysha Deslorieux (Zainab), Delius Doherty (Ensemble), C.K. Edwards (Ensemble), Will Erat (Ensemble), Brandon Espinoza (Ensemble), Sean Ewing (Swing), Crystal Joy (Swing), Marla Louissaint (Ensemble), Ahmad Maksoud (Ensemble), Sahar Milani (Swing), Dimitri Joseph Moïse (Ensemble), Takafumi Nikaido (Ensemble/Drummer), David Hyde Pierce (Walter), Paul Pontrelli (Ensemble), and Katie Terza (Ensemble).

CULLUD WATTAH

2021 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize winner Erika Dickerson-Despenza’s new Afro-surrealist play premieres at The Public about three generations of Black women living through the current water crisis in Flint, Michigan. It’s been 936 days since Flint has had clean water. Marion, a third-generation General Motors employee, is consumed by layoffs at the engine plant. When her sister, Ainee, seeks justice and restitution for lead poisoning, her plan reveals the toxic entanglements between the city and its most powerful industry, forcing their family to confront the past-present-future cost of survival. As lead seeps into their home and their bodies, corrosive memories and secrets rise among them. Will this family ever be able to filter out the truth? Directed by Lilly Award winner Candis C. JonesCULLUD WATTAH blends form and bends time, diving deep into the poisonous choices of the outside world, the contamination within, and how we make the best choices for our families’ future when there are no real, present options. CULLUD WATTAH comes to us from the same playwright and director duo behind the thrilling digital production of shadow/land.

 

The complete cast of CULLUD WATTAH features Crystal Dickinson (Marion), Jennean Farmer (Marion/Ainee Understudy), Lizan Mitchell (Big Ma), Ta’Neesha Murphy (Plum/Reesee Understudy), Andrea Patterson (Ainee), Alicia Pilgrim (Plum), Chavez Ravine (Big Ma Understudy), and Lauren F. Walker (Reesee). 

MERRY WIVES

We’re thrilled to return to Central Park this summer for Free Shakespeare in the Park beginning July 6 through September 18, with MERRY WIVES, a fresh and joyous adaptation by Jocelyn Bioh of Shakespeare’s MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR, directed by our Associate Artistic Director and Resident Director Saheem Ali.

Set in South Harlem, amidst a vibrant and eclectic community of West African immigrants, MERRY WIVES is a New York story about tricks of the heart, performed in the heart of the City—Central Park’s magical Delacorte Theater. A raucous spinoff featuring the Bard’s most beloved comic characters, this hilarious farce tells the story of the trickster Falstaff and the wily wives who outwit him in a new celebration of Black joy, laughter, and vitality.  

The all-Black cast of MERRY WIVES will include Abena (Anne Page), Shola Adewusi (Mama Quickly), Gbenga Akinnagbe (Mister Nduka Ford), Pascale Armand (Madam Ekua Page), MaYaa Boateng (Fenton/Simple), Phillip James Brannon (Pastor Evans), Brandon E. Burton (Ensemble), Joshua Echebiri (Slender/Pistol), Branden Lindsay (Ensemble), Ebony Marshall-Oliver (Ensemble), Jarvis D.  Matthews (Ensemble), Jacob Ming-Trent (Falstaff), Jennifer Mogbock (Ensemble), Julian Rozzell Jr. (Shallow), Kyle Scatliffe (Mister Kwame Page), David Ryan Smith (Doctor Caius), and Susan Kelechi Watson (Madam Nkechi Ford).

FREE SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK

FREE SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK at The Delacorte Theater in Central Park is one of the cornerstones of The Public Theater’s mission. Since 1962, over five million people have enjoyed more than 150 free productions of Shakespeare and other classical works and musicals. 

THE PUBLIC THEATER

PRESS RELEASES

THE PUBLIC is theater of, by, and for all people. Artist-driven, radically inclusive, and fundamentally democratic, The Public continues the work of its visionary founder Joe Papp as a civic institution engaging, both on-stage and off, with some of the most important ideas and social issues of today. Conceived over 60 years ago as one of the nation’s first nonprofit theaters, The Public has long operated on the principles that theater is an essential cultural force and that art and culture belong to everyone. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham, The Public’s wide breadth of programming includes an annual season of new work at its landmark home at Astor Place, Free Shakespeare in the Park at The Delacorte Theater in Central Park, the Mobile Unit touring throughout New York City’s five boroughs, Public Forum, Under the Radar, Public Studio, Public Works, Public Shakespeare Initiative, and Joe’s Pub. Since premiering HAIR in 1967, The Public continues to create the canon of American Theater and is currently represented on Broadway by the Tony Award-winning musical Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Girl From the North Country. Their programs and productions can also be seen regionally across the country and around the world. The Public has received 59 Tony Awards, 184 Obie Awards, 55 Drama Desk Awards, 58 Lortel Awards, 34 Outer Critic Circle Awards, 13 New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, 56 AUDELCO Awards, 6 Antonyo Awards, and 6 Pulitzer Prizes. publictheater.org 

The Public Theater stands in honor of the first inhabitants and our ancestors. We acknowledge the land on which The Public and its theaters stand--the original homeland of the Lenape people. We acknowledge the painful history of genocide and forced removal from this territory. We honor the generations of stewards and we pay our respects to the many diverse indigenous peoples still connected to this land. The Public Theater honors and celebrates the people and legacy of Seneca Village, one of the earliest free Black communities in New York City, which was located in what is now Central Park from 1825–1857.