(BOSTON) – The Huntington Theatre Company’s production of Huntington Playwriting Fellow Kirsten Greenidge’s The Luck of the Irish closed yesterday as the highest grossing and attended Huntington world premiere at the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA since the fall of 2004. The Luck of the Irish played for a total of 41 performances from March 29 through May 6, including a one-week extension due to popular demand that was announced on April 13. Ticket demand for The Luck of the Irish was so high that an advanced waiting list was introduced in April and final extension performances were sold out.
The production, which was directed by Obie Award winner Melia Bensussen, received universal critical acclaim:
- “Superb! Kirsten Greenidge is a writer of compassion and deep understanding...How rich Greenidge’s dialogue is, how satisfyingly detailed the two interwoven stories are, and how uniformly well acted The Luck of the Irish is.” – The Boston Globe
- “Extraordinary! I lost myself in this piece and have not stopped thinking about it.” – Jared Bowen, WGBH
- “Greenidge’s finest work to date! Poignant and truly touching. A delight to watch.” – Metro Boston
- “Haunting, thought-provoking, and deeply moving. The memory will linger with lucky theatergoers long past the final blackout. Greenidge has given delicate yet honest voice to racial and class issues with great insight and subtle eloquence.” – BroadwayWorld.com
- “Magnificent! A great play that should be seen and savored.” – BerkshireFineArts.com
- “Remarkable! The Luck of the Irish is not to be missed!” – EdgeBoston.com
- “A flawless cast and a world-class production. A story that resonates with anyone who ever searched for a place to call home.” – Talkin’Broadway.com
The Luck of the Irish spans two time periods and three generations. In the late 1950s, Lucy and Rex Taylor, a well-to-do African-American couple living in Boston’s South End, aspire to move to a nearby suburb to provide a better life for their two daughters. Unable to purchase a home in a segregated neighborhood themselves, they pay Patty Ann and Joe Donovan, a struggling Irish family to “ghost-buy” the house on their behalf and then sign over the deed. Fifty years later, Lucy’s granddaughter Hannah lives in the house with her family, where she grapples with the contemporary racial and social issues that stem from living in a primarily white community. When Lucy dies and leaves the house to Hannah and her sister Nessa, the now elderly Donovans return and ask for “their” house back, which catalyzes Hannah’s questioning of family’s place in the predominantly white community. This complex yet intimate new play examines the long-term emotional costs of racial integration and the universal longing for a sense of place.
Kirsten Greenidge is a Huntington Playwriting Fellow and the author of the plays Milk Like Sugar (Lucille Lortel nomination), Bossa Nova, Rust, The Curious Walk of the Salamander, Sans-Culottes in the Promised Land, 103 Within the Veil, and The Gibson Girl. She has developed her work at Sundance (Utah and Ucross), Magic Theatre, National New Play Network, Cardinal Stage, South Coast Repertory, Madison Rep, Page 73, Hourglass, Bay Area Playwrights, Playwrights Horizons, New Dramatists, The Mark Taper Forum, A.S.K., Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, Guthrie Theater, Mixed Blood, McCarter Theatre, Humana Festival of New American Plays, Moxie, and New Georges. She is the recipient of an NEA/TCG residency at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company and a residency at Boston’s Company One. She has also received Sundance’s Time Warner Award for Bossa Nova and a commission from Yale Repertory Theatre. Ms. Greenidge attended Wesleyan University and the Playwrights Workshop/University of Iowa, and is a member of New Dramatists and Rhombus. She is represented by Mark Orsini at Bret Adams, LTD.
Greenidge is a part of an accomplished and acclaimed group of Huntington Playwriting Fellows to be produced by the Huntington including Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly), Ronan Noone (The Atheist, Brendan), Melinda Lopez (Sonia Flew), Sinan Ünel (The Cry of the Reed), Rebecca Maggor (Shakespeare’s Actresses in America), Ryan Landry (the upcoming “M” and Psyched), and Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro (Before I Leave You).
ABOUT THE HUNTINGTON
Since its founding in 1982, the Huntington Theatre Company has developed into Boston’s leading theatre company. Bringing together superb local and national talent, the Huntington produces a mix of groundbreaking new works and classics made current. Led by Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso, the Huntington creates award-winning 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. The Huntington is in residence at Boston University. For more information, visit huntingtontheatre.org.
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