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Huntington Theatre Company Adds Moving New Drama, Contemporary Comic Revival, And Recent Smash Broadway Hit To Complete 2013-2014 Season That Features The Return Of Many Beloved Huntington Artists.

(BOSTON) — Huntington Theatre Company adds three titles to its 2013-2014 program to complete a season featuring celebrated artists who are beloved by Boston audiences. Continuing its 31-year tradition, the Huntington will present world-class productions of new works and classics made current including a moving new drama, a sexy smash Broadway comedy, and a contemporary comic revival, in addition to the previously announced ravishing new musical adaptation by a visionary director, stirring world premiere by the Huntington's new playwright-in-residence, sharp new work by Boston's most recent Broadway playwright, and master's classic brought to life by two outstanding interpreters of his work.

 

NEWLY ADDED TO THE 2013-2014 SEASON

  • The Power of Duff, a moving new drama by Stephen Belber; directed by Peter DuBois (Sons of the Prophet and the upcoming Rapture, Blister, Burn); at the South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA October 11 — November 9, 2013
  • The Cocktail Hour, a comedy on the rocks by A.R. Gurney (The Dining Room and The Snowball), directed by Maria Aitken (Betrayal and Private Lives); at the Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre November 15 — December 15, 2013
  • Venus in Fur, a sexy new comedy by David Ives, directed by Daniel Goldstein (God of Carnage); at the Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre January 3 — February 2, 2014

A non-subscription production to be performed in the Calderwood Pavilion's Roberts Studio Theatre will be announced at a later date.

DETAILS ABOUT THE COMPLETE 2013-2014 SEASON

THE JUNGLE BOOK

Based on the stories of Rudyard Kipling and the Disney animated film
Adapted and directed by Mary Zimmerman (Candide)
Produced in association with the Goodman Theatre
September 7 – October 6, 2013
Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre

RAVISHING NEW MUSICAL

From the imagination of Tony Award winner Mary Zimmerman (Candide) comes a captivating new musical adaptation of a timeless favorite. The jungle springs to life in a kaleidoscopic song-and-dance-filled production that chronicles young Mowgli's adventures growing up in the animal kingdom. Based on Rudyard Kipling's time-honored tales and featuring music from the classic Disney film, this ravishing world premiere will enchant audiences of all ages. As the TAB/Wicked Local says, "Let Mary Zimmerman dazzle you!"

"I recently heard Mary Zimmerman and her creative team's take on The Jungle Book music while in Chicago," says Huntington Artistic Director Peter DuBois. "I was immediately reminded of what I love about Mary and what she brings to The Jungle Book – her big heart, sophisticated mind, and a playful imagination. In this latest creation, she brilliantly interweaves Kipling's evocative prose with the story of the classic film and marries traditional Indian instruments to its jazzy, instantly recognizable tunes. It's a dream!"

"I'm absolutely thrilled to be returning to Boston and to the Huntington," says Zimmerman. "I love the theatre and its audience. We've just finished our second, very intense, very joyful music workshop at the Goodman where six swing/jazz musicians and six Indian musicians brought their virtuosity to the project. The songs from the film are utterly recognizable, yet renewed and enriched by these new, beautiful sounds, and it was the thrill of a lifetime to work with Richard Sherman of the original composing team."

 

THE POWER OF DUFF

by Stephen Belber
Directed by Peter DuBois (Sons of the Prophet and the upcoming Rapture, Blister, Burn)
October 11 – November 9, 2013
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA

MOVING NEW DRAMA

When burnt-out local TV newscaster Charlie Duff suddenly begins offering a prayer at the end of his nightly broadcasts, he instantly becomes a popular and controversial figure to an expanding audience. But even as his prayers inspire millions, Charlie struggles with his own beliefs and his inability to connect with his estranged son. American Theatre says, "Stephen Belber confronts messy reality with an unflinching eye and singular voice."

"Uniquely comic and unabashedly theatrical, The Power of Duff also pulses with incredible emotional clarity," says DuBois. "It tells the transformative story of one man waking up to life, just as it seemed he was too lost and it was too late."

 

THE COCKTAIL HOUR

by A.R. Gurney (The Dining Room and The Snowball)
Directed by Maria Aitken (Betrayal and Private Lives)
November 15 – December 15, 2013
Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre

COMEDY ON THE ROCKS

The pre-dinner cocktail is a revered ritual in John's parents' elegant home, but when he returns to announce that he has written a play about them, their calm demeanor dissolves. As the martinis flow, so do the revelations and recriminations, both funny and poignant, in this heartfelt comedy about the ties that bind. The New Yorker calls The Cocktail Hour, "Funny and moving!"

"The family roast can't seem to get to the table, and cocktail hour is extended. What's not to love?" says DuBois. "We have been talking about a revival of A.R. Gurney's American comedy of manners for a few years now, and when we knew Maria Aitken was available to direct it, the cocktail was complete!"

"The idea of a year going by without working at the Huntington is so stressful that I have sought solace in the occasional martini while working elsewhere," confesses Aitken. "I was filled with joy when the opportunity arose to return to my favorite theatre in America to direct The Cocktail Hour, for I am already in training in the cocktail department."

 

VENUS IN FUR

by David Ives
Directed by Daniel Goldstein (God of Carnage)
January 3 – February 2, 2014
Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre

SEXY NEW COMEDY

Vanda has her eyes on the lead role in Venus in Fur, an adaptation of the classic erotic novel. Her charged audition for the director becomes an electrifying game of cat and mouse – and the lines blur between fantasy and reality, seduction and power, love and sex. A smash Broadway hit, this hilarious and sexy new comedy makes its New England premiere. The New York Times calls Venus in Fur "90 minutes of good, kinky fun."

"This savage, sexy, smart, and funny new play took my breath away," says DuBois. "Director Daniel Goldstein set our stage on fire with God of Carnage, and I know he will make our new production the hottest date night in Boston."

 

THE SEAGULL

by Anton Chekhov
Directed by Nicholas Martin (The Cherry Orchard)
March 7 – April 6, 2014
Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre

PASSIONATE CLASSIC

Nicholas Martin and Kate Burton (The Corn is Green and The Cherry Orchard) – renowned interpreters of Chekhov's blend of humor and pathos – reunite for this emotionally rich classic. Celebrated actress Irina Arkadina's visit to her aspiring playwright son with her successful novelist lover in tow kindles unrequited passions in this masterpiece about love, missed connections, and what it means to be an artist. Burton's son Morgan Ritchie, who appeared with her in The Corn is Green, plays Arkadina's son Konstantin. WBUR praises, "Nicholas Martin is a master." 

"Nicholas Martin and Kate Burton are a Chekhov dream team," says DuBois. "Add Kate's son Morgan in the role of Konstantin, and this production is definitely one to anticipate."

"I'm thrilled to reunite with my beloved Nicholas Martin, my leading man from The Corn is Green – Morgan Ritchie, and one of my favorite theatres, the Huntington," says Burton.

BECOMING CUBA

by Melinda Lopez
Directed by M. Bevin O'Gara
March 28 – April 26, 2014
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA

STIRRING NEW DRAMA

In 1898 Cuba on the eve of the Spanish-American War, spirited widow Adela runs a pharmacy, indifferent to the mounting conflict around her. But when the rebellion comes home to Havana, she must choose between loyalty to country or to family. By turns funny, steamy, and political, this powerful new drama from Playwright-in-Residence Melinda Lopez (Sonia Flew) asks whether freedom is something we all want. Huntington Associate Producer M. Bevin O'Gara directs. Variety says, "Melinda Lopez is a genuine talent."

"Since I arrived at the Huntington, people have asked when we would stage another new play by Melinda Lopez," says DuBois. "Becoming Cuba is exuberant, passionate, and well-worth the wait. It's an incredible way to kick off Melinda's new position as the Huntington's playwright-in-residence."

"Becoming Cuba takes me back to my favorite theatrical territory – mining big stories rooted in a shared history of the US and Cuba," says Lopez. "I am so pleased to be returning to the Huntington, my artistic home, and I am especially excited to again work with director M. Bevin O'Gara. Bevin understands my sensibility and my humor, and I trust her to wring the most and the best from my work. We are a terrific team."

 

SMART PEOPLE

by Lydia R. Diamond
Directed by Peter DuBois
May 23 – June 21, 2014
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA

SHARP NEW COMEDY

Are our beliefs hard-wired into us? Four Harvard intellectuals – a doctor, an actress, a psychologist, and a neurobiologist studying the human brain's response to race – search for love, success, and identity in a complex world. With barbed wit, Huntington Playwriting Fellow Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly) explores the inescapable nature of racism and other tricky topics in this controversial and fiercely funny new play that will be directed by Huntington Artistic Director Peter DuBois (Sons of the Prophet and the upcoming Rapture, Blister, Burn). Boston Herald proclaims, "Lydia Diamond's dialogue is so damn smart and clever."

"Quick-witted, wildly intelligent, and as entertaining as it is unsettling, Smart People is Lydia Diamond's most ambitious play to date," say DuBois.

"What an outrageous honor – the luxury of returning to a theatre I've come to call home," says Diamond. "I can think of no better place to launch my new play than within the warm embrace of the Huntington. Smart People takes on big ideas and lives in the world of risky questioning and flawed humanity. It is thrilling to have Peter DuBois at the helm of this ship."

 

SUBSCRIPTIONS ON SALE NOW

Subscriptions to the Huntington's 2013-2014 Season are on sale now. Seven-play seated packages start at just $126 and offer the very best value – seven plays for the price of six so it's like seeing one show for free – and up to 54% off single ticket prices. FlexPass packages (a minimum of 4 tickets that can be used for any show and never expire) are also available.

Subscriptions may be renewed or purchased by calling the Huntington Box Office at 617 266 0800 or by visiting huntingtontheatre.org/subscribe. Groups of 10 or more can place orders by calling 617 273 1665.

Single tickets will go on sale this summer.

 

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 champions 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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