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Friday, May 8, 2015

‘Five Mile Lake’ closes McCarter Theatre season

five daeeow          Nathan Darrow and Kristen Bush (photo by T.Charles Erickson)

Winner of the 2014 Weissberger Award for Playwriting to receive its East Coast Premiere directed by McCarter Artistic Director Emily Mann

Jason Babinsky, Kristen Bush, Nathan Darrow, Mahira Kakkar, and Tobias Segal are featured in this heartfelt look at small-town life
Five Mile Lake runs through May 31 on McCarter’s Berlind Stage

Jamie (Tobias Segal) enjoys a quiet life in his small Pennsylvania town, fixing up his grandfather’s old lake house and pining after Mary (Kristen Bush), his troubled coworker. When his brother (Nathan Darrow) comes back to town with a new girlfriend (Mahira Kakkar), Jamie’s peaceful world is thrown into disorder. What follows is a tender and heartfelt tale about regret, lost loves, and the murky depths that lie beneath still waters.
Continuing its proud tradition of introducing major new plays and writers to the American Stage,(Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, The Convert, and Anna in the Tropics) McCarter Theatre Center is pleased to present the East Coast Premiere by playwright Rachel Bonds, whose work contains a “sublime tone” (The New York Times) in its well-constructed mix of character, potent dialogue, and nuanced subtext.
Five Mile Lake was presented as a staged reading as part of McCarter Theatre Center’s 2013 Lab Reading Series.  Costa Mesa, CA’s South Coast Repertory presented the world premiere in the spring of 2014 with a script lauded as “a gift for actors” by the Los Angeles Times.
In the words of director Emily Mann, “I am exceedingly proud of McCarter’s reputation as a home and a hub for original work and emerging artists. Rachel’s writing is exquisite. Her plays capture quiet moments and interactions that have large, life-changing implications for the characters, all of whom are vividly drawn, familiar, and lovable. Five Mile Lake is about a small town—not unlike the small towns from which both Rachel and I hail. When I read it, I immediately connected to the story, which seems, in so many ways, to capture elements of my own young adulthood.”
The cast of Five Mile Lake is a true ensemble of talent, including returning McCarter artists Kristen Bush (Proof) as Mary, Tobias Segal (Antony & Cleopatra) as Jamie, and Mahira Kakkar (Miss Witherspoon) as Peta. Newcomers to McCarter include Jason Babinsky (Billy Eliot and Ghost on Broadway) as Danny and Nathan Darrow (known for his role as Secret Service Agent Edward Meechum on Netflix’ House of Cards) as Rufus.
The creative/design team for Five Mile Lake consists of five artists at the top of their creative games. Scenic Designer Edward Pierce, whose Broadway credits include Wicked, Billy Elliot, 9 to 5, and Pippin (just to name a few) returns to McCarter after opening the current season in a starkly beautiful fashion with the design for Antony & Cleopatra. Lighting Designer Jeff Croiter, veteran of numerous McCarter productions including Miss Witherspoon and Last of the Boys, won the 2012 Best Lighting Design of a Play Tony Award for his stellar work on Peter and The Starcatcher. Sound Designer Daniel Perelstein contributes original music as well, and is a 2-time Barrymore Award Winner for Outstanding Sound Design. Obie Award-Winning Costume Designer Jennifer von Mayrhauser returns to McCarter, having designed for more than 15 productions directed by Emily Mann.
About Emily Mann (Director, Artistic Director/Resident Playwright)
Multi-award-winning Director and Playwright Emily Mann is celebrating her 25th season as Artistic Director of McCarter Theatre where she has overseen over 200 productions. Under Ms. Mann’s leadership, McCarter accepted the 1994 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theater and the 2013 Tony Award for best new play for Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. Recent productions directed at McCarter include Antony & Cleopatra, Proof, A Delicate Balance, and the world premieres of The Convert (also at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago and CTG in Los Angeles); The How and the Why; and Edward Albee’s Me, Myself & I (also at Playwrights Horizons). Notable Broadway productions include A Streetcar Named Desire, Anna in the Tropics, Execution of Justice (playwright and director), and Having Our Say, which Ms. Mann wrote and directed, adapted from the book by Sarah L. Delany and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth. Emily’s other plays include: Annulla, An Autobiography; Still Life; Greensboro (A Requiem); Meshugah; and Mrs. Packard. Her adaptations include: Antigone, Uncle Vanya, The Cherry Orchard, a free adaptation of The Seagull: A Seagull in the Hamptons and The House of Bernarda Alba (recently staged in London).  Ms. Mann’s adaptation of Ingmar Bergman’s Scenes from a Marriage premiered this fall at New York Theatre Workshop.  A winner of the Peabody Award, the Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award and the Edward Albee Last Frontier Directing Award, Emily is a member of the Dramatists Guild and serves on its council. She is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from Princeton University.

About Rachel Bonds (playwright)

Rachel Bonds’ plays have been developed or produced by South Coast Rep, Ars Nova, Manhattan Theatre Club, The McCarter Theatre, Roundabout Underground, Atlantic Theater Company, New Georges, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Studio Theatre, SPACE on Ryder Farm, Williamstown Theatre Festival, The Arden and New York Stage & Film, among others.  She is currently working on commissions for Ars Nova/MTC’s Writer’s Room, South Coast Rep and Atlantic Theater Company.  Upcoming projects include the World Premiere of SWIMMERS at Marin Theatre Company, directed by Mike Donahue, in March 2016.  Bonds is a graduate of Brown University.

McCarter Theatre is located at 91 University Place in Princeton, NJ. For more information,

Five Mile Lake – Production Facts
Creative, Production, and Design Team

Written by: Rachel BondsDirection: Emily Mann
Scenic Design: Edward Pierce
Costume Design: Jennifer von Mayrhauser
Lighting Design: Jeff Croiter
Original Music and Sound Design: Daniel PerelsteinCasting Director: David Caparelliotis, CSA
Associate Artistic Director: Adam Immerwahr
Production Stage Manager:   Cheryl Mintz
Director of Production:   David York
Managing Director:  Timothy J. Shields

CAST (in order of appearance)

Jamie: Tobias Segal
Mary: Kristen Bush
Rufus: Nathan Darrow
Peta: Mahira Kakkar
Danny: Jason Babinsky

Ticket Information and Performance Schedule
Single tickets for Five Mile Lake start as low as $25 and are on sale now online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Theatre Ticket Office, located at 91 University Place in Princeton.
Five Mile Lake will be performed on the Berlind Stage. The production will be one hour, forty five minutes with no intermission.
Friday                    May 1                                    8:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 2                                    8:00 p.m.
Sunday                 May 3                                    2:00 p.m. (Community Think post-show event)

Tuesday               May 5                                    7:30 p.m.
Wednesday        May 6                                    7:30 p.m.
Thursday             May 7                                    7:30 p.m.
Friday                    May 8                                    8:00 p.m. (Opening Night/Press Opening)
Saturday              May 9                                    3:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 9                                    8:00p.m.
Sunday                 May 10                                 2:00 p.m. (Dialogue on Drama)
Tuesday               May 12                                 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday        May 13                                 7:30 p.m. (Post-Show Discussion)
Thursday             May 14                                 7:30 p.m. (Pride Night)
Friday                    May 15                                 8:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 16                                 3:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 16                                 8:00 p.m.
Sunday                 May 17                                 2:00 p.m. (Post-Show Discussion)
Sunday                 May 17                                 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday        May 20                                 7:30 p.m.
Thursday             May 21                                 7:30 p.m.
Friday                    May 22                                 8:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 23                                 3:00 p.m. (Open Captioning Performance)
Saturday              May 23                                 8:00 p.m.
Sunday                 May 24                                 2:00 p.m.
Sunday                 May 24                                 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday               May 26                                 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday        May 27                                 7:30 p.m. (Audio Described Performance)
Thursday             May 28                                 7:30 p.m.
Friday                    May 29                                 8:00 p.m.
Saturday              May 30                                 3:00 p.m. (ASL Interpreted Performance)
Saturday              May 30                                 8:00 p.m.
Sunday                 May 31                                 2:00 p.m. (Closing Performance)                 

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