Grammy Award-winner Alicia Keys with Reuben Cannon & Nelle Nugent are proud to announce the Broadway premiere of STICK FLY, the critically-acclaimed American play by Lydia R. Diamond and directed by Kenny Leon, opening on Broadway on Thursday, December 8, 2011 at the Lyceum Theatre (149 W. 45th Street). Preview performances begin Friday, November 18, 2011. Opens December 8, 2011. Tickets are now on sale through Telecharge.com.
"This is a story that everybody can relate to," said producer Alicia Keys. "I'm passionate about this play because it is so beautifully written and portrays Black America in a way that we don't often get to see in entertainment. I know it will touch all audiences, who will find a piece of themselves somewhere inside this house."
"Stick Fly is one of those unique plays with a beauty that lies in its universality," said director Kenny Leon. "Lydia Diamond is a master storyteller, combining humor with intellect. Her reach is as great as my friend August Wilson — her poetry and the world of the characters may differ, but the results are the same: an evening full of laughter and thought that keeps us talking long after we've left the theatre. I love plays where everyone can find themselves in the story on stage."
STICK FLY follows the LeVays, an affluent African American family who come together to spend a summer weekend at their Martha's Vineyard home. The adult sons, aspiring novelist Kent and golden boy plastic surgeon Flip, have each brought their respective ladies (one Black and one White) to meet the parents. Food, drink, and Trivial Pursuit tangle with class, race, and identity politics in this contemporary comedy of manners.
STICK FLY was developed in a recent co-production last year between the Huntington Theatre Company in Boston and Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. The play had its world premiere at Chicago's Congo Square Theatre Company in 2006 and was subsequently performed at theatres including the McCarter Theatre in 2007 and the Matrix Theatre Company in Los Angeles in 2009. STICK FLY is the recipient of 2011 Independent Reviewers of New England Awards for Best Production, Best Direction, and Best Ensemble Performance; a 2010 LA Garland Award for Playwriting; a 2009 LA Weekly Theatre Award for Playwriting; and the 2006 Black Theatre Alliance Award for Best New Play. It was also a 2008 Susan Blackburn Prize finalist and a nominee for the 2006 Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work.
Critical acclaim for previous productions of STICK FLY:
"ACUTELY OBSERVANT, LAUGH-OUT-LOUD FUNNY, ACHINGLY PAINFUL, and complicated as only real human stories can be — It's a fine night in the theater if a play earns even one of these descriptions. To provide all of that and more, as Lydia R. Diamond's Stick Fly does — well, that's just CAUSE TO SHOUT FOR JOY." — The Boston Globe
"A REFRESHINGLY VITAL STORY ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS AND RICHLY COMPLEX CHARACTERS. Although race and class are pivotal issues here, the drama is human." — Variety
"FUNNY and PROVOCATIVE!" — The Washington Examiner
"A COMPLEX, FUNNY, MOVING PLAY from big-brained playwright Lydia R. Diamond." — Boston Herald
Casting, creative team, and additional production information will be announced soon. Tickets are available by calling Telecharge.com at 212 239 6200, 800 432 7250 outside the NY metro area, or online at Telecharge.com. For more information, visit www.StickFlyBroadway.com.
LYDIA R. DIAMOND (playwright) is making her Broadway debut with her award-winning play Stick Fly ('10 IRNE Award — Best Play, '10 LA Critics Circle Awards, '10 LA Garland Award — Playwriting, '08 Susan S. Blackburn Finalist, '06 Black Theatre Alliance Award — Best Play). Other productions include Voyeurs de Venus ('06 Joseph Jefferson Award — Best New Work, '06 BTAA — Best Writing), The Bluest Eye ('06 Black Arts Alliance Image Award — Best New Play, '08 American Alliance for Theatre and Education Distinguished Play Award), The Gift Horse ('05 Theodore Ward Prize, Kesselring Prize 2ndPlace), Harriet Jacobs, Stage Black, and Lizzie Stranton (2008 Boston University Playwriting Initiative Commission). Theatre include: Arena Stage, Chicago Dramatists, Company One, Congo Square, Everyman Theatre Company, Freedom Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Hartford Stage, Huntington Theatre Company, Jubilee Theatre, Kansas City Rep, LA TheatreWorks, Long Wharf, Lorraine Hansberry Theratre, McCarter Theatre Company, Mo'Olelo Theatre Company, MPAACT, New Vic, Playmakers Rep, Plowshares Theatre Company, Providence Black Rep, Steppenwolf, TrueColors, The Matrix, Underground Railway Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and The Contemporary American Theatre Festival. Lydia's plays have been produced at Universities around the country including Duke, Howard, Boston University, Northwestern University, University of Wisconsin, Columbia College Chicago, Spelman College, University of California — San Marcos, and University of Maryland. Lydia has been commissioned by Steppenwolf, McCarter, Huntington, Actor's Theatre of Louisville/Victory Gardens, Humana, Boston University, and the Roundabout. Stick Fly and Harriet Jacobs are published by NU Press, The Bluest Eye, Gift Horse, Stage Black — Dramatic Publishing. Lydia was an '05/'06 W.E.B. DuBois Institute non-resident Fellow, a 2009 NEA/Arena Stage New Play Development Grant Finalist, is a TCG Executive Board Member, a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists, an Honorary Doctorate of Arts Recipient from Pine Manor College, and a recent recipient of the Huntington Theatre Company's 2011 Wimberly Award. Lydia is on faculty at Boston University.
KENNY LEON (director), Tony nominated director and Julia Hansen Award winner; Kenny Leon is one of the most acclaimed directors in contemporary American theatre. In 2010, his hit Broadway production ofFences garnered 10 Tony Nominations including Best Director and won the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play, Best Actor, and Best Actress. Past Broadway credits include Radio Golf, Gem of the Ocean and the Tony-winning revival of Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun. Mr. Leon was nominated for Best Director by the Directors Guild of America for the television film of 'A Raisin in the Sun' which also received Emmy and Golden Globe nominations and won 3 NAACP Image Awards. Prior to founding Kenny Leon's True Colors Theatre Company, he served 11 years as Artistic Director of the Alliance Theatre, where he produced the premieres of Disney's Elaborate Lives: The Legend of Aida, Pearl Cleage's Blues for an Alabama Sky and Alfred Uhry's The Last Night of Ballyboo. Other directorial credits include Toni Morrison's opera Margaret Garner, the world premiere of Flashdance: The Musical, Alicia Keys' As I Am worldwide tour, and the August Wilson Century Cycle at the Kennedy Center, for which he was Artistic Director. He has directed extensively around the United State, including Chicago's Goodman Theatre, Boston's Huntington Theatre Company, Baltimore's Center Stage, Los Angeles' Center Theatre Group, and New York's Public Theatre. This past fall, Mr. Leon directed the world premiere of Marcus Gardley'sEvery Tongue Confess starring Phylicia Rashad at Arena Stage in D.C. He will return to Broadway in 2011 to direct Katori Hall's The Mountaintop starring Samuel L. Jackson, and will direct the feature films Babylon and Cotton later this summer. He has also directed episodes of "Private Practice" for ABC and "Ghost Whisperer" for CBS.
ABOUT THE HUNTINGTON
The Huntington Theatre Company, in residence at Boston University, is Boston’s largest professional theatre company. Led by Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso, the Huntington creates world-class productions, runs nationally renowned programs in education and new play development, and serves the local theatre community through its operation of the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA. For more information, visit huntingtontheatre.org.