Pulitzer Prize Winner “Clybourne Park” Makes Its NJ Premiere Next Month

Clybourne_Park_jpgUNION – Premiere Stages will present the New Jersey premiere of Clybourne Park by Bruce Norris from July 11 through 29 in the Zella Fry Theatre at Kean University. Directed by Wes Grantom, this Tony Award-winning play is a satire that explores the reactions of Clybourne Park’s 1950s all-white community when a couple unknowingly sells their house to a black family. The tables of gentrification turn when – fifty years later – the now all-black community greets the news of an impending sale to a white family with the same level of apprehension.

Lorraine Hansberry’s masterpiece A Raisin in the Sun served as the inspiration for Clybourne Park and Premiere Stages will offer a free screening of the film to all ticket buyers as a preview to the production. The screening will take place on Saturday, July 6 at 3 p.m. in the STEM Building Auditorium. For information or to reserve tickets for the screening, call 908-737-4092.

Clybourne Park will feature Frank Deal as Russ/Dan and Kate Goehring as Bev/Kathy. Deal recently appeared on Broadway in August: Osage County; Goehring originated the role of Harper Pitt in the National Tour of Angels in America. Premiere’s cast also features Tim McGeever (Karl/Steve), who recently appeared in Pittsburgh Public Theater’s production of Clybourne Park; Danielle Slavick (Betsy/Lindsey), seen in Adam Rapp’s Through the Yellow Hour at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater; Samuel Stricklen (Albert/Kevin), whose regional credits include the Old Globe; Brett Robinson (Francine/Lena), who appeared in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Actors Theatre of Louisville; and Dustin Fontaine (Jim/Tom/Kenneth), who played Rodrigo in Lulu at New York’s Riverside Theatre.

Premiere Stages will partner with The American Conference on Diversity for the production. Founded in 1948, the Conference is one of the leading human relations organizations in New Jersey. The organization’s goal is to create a positive, inclusive society by educating and empowering our next generation of leaders; enhancing New Jersey workplaces; and helping to create inclusive communities. Renee Ayers, Director of Professional Development at The American Conference on Diversity, will join Resident Dramaturg Clare Drobot in creating a customized talk-back program following the Sunday matinees on July 14 and July 21. The talk-backs will focus on issues of both racism and gentrification. Admission to both post-show talk-backs is included with the purchase of a ticket to either Sunday performance. For more information on The American Conference on Diversity,  visit their website at http://americanconferenceondiversity.org.

Clybourne Park runs Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 3 and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m. Tickets are $30 standard, $20 senior citizen, and $15 student. Significant discounts for groups of 10 or more apply. To make reservations or to order a season brochure, call the Kean Stage Box Office at 908-737-SHOW (7469) or visit Premiere online at www.kean.edu/premierestages.

Premiere Stages will host a special Opening Night party on July 12th. The event will feature a pre-show party with wine and hors d’ oeuvres at the new four-star gourmet restaurant Ursino, a ticket to the play and a post-show champagne toast and dessert reception with the cast, for $55. Tickets can be purchased by calling 908-737-4092.

All performances take place on the Kean University campus, located at 1000 Morris Avenue, in the Zella Fry Theatre of the Vaughn Eames Fine Arts Building.

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