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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Dreamcatcher Offers “Meet the Artist” New Play Readings on May 16 & 23


Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, professional Theatre in Residence at the Oakes Center in Summit, will present its annual Meet the Artist new play reading series on Wednesday, May 16 and Wednesday, May 23 at 7 pm at the Oakes Center.

The new play reading series is a chance for the audience to participate in the development of new works, both to hear the play read by professional actors and also to discuss the project with the playwright, director and actors afterward.  Feedback from these evenings helps the playwrights to further refine their scripts and also gives them a first-hand experience of how the audience will respond to the finished work. These evenings provide a fun and lively way to interact with the creative process, and to receive a preview of plays that may be performed on Dreamcatcher’s mainstage in the future.

On May 16, Dreamcatcher will present a reading of Psychodrama by Phoebe Farber. The play is a seriocomic story of the members of a weekly divorce group, held in the basement of the Unitarian church. The members are suddenly left stranded when Mitchell, their leader, leaves halfway through. Luckily, Barb has appeared to be the new group leader. Her methods are unconventional, to say the least. The reading will be directed by Betsy True, and the cast will be Harry Patrick Christian, Laura Ekstrand, Julian Gordon, Anna Marie Sell and Harriett Trangucci.

Phoebe Farber’s plays have been seen around New York and New Jersey. Her play Scrimmage was seen at The Players Theatre (best play, NYC), The Short Play Lab (best play, NYC) and Strangedog short play festival (NJ). Home Care was seen in the Strawberry One-Act Festival (Finalist, NYC), The Aery Theatre’s One-Act Play Festival (NY),Variations Theatre Group (NYC) and at Lab at Luna through Luna Stage (NJ). Jump It was a finalist at The Depot Theater 20/20 festival in Garrison, New York, and appeared at The Everyday Inferno Theater Festival (NYC) and at Lab at Luna (NJ). Class Reunion was seen at The Cell Theater (NYC) and Strangedog short play festival (NJ). Readings have included Jump It and Nina at Fresh Produced Reading Series (NYC) and Dancing in Captivity at Horsetrade Theatre Group (NYC). Her plays have been published in Applause Theatre & Cinema Books and The Best Plays from the Strawberry One-Act Festival. Phoebe lives in Montclair, New Jersey, has a private psychotherapy practice and is a professor at Montclair State University.

May 23’s play, Wolf at the Door by Richard Dresser, is a comic allegory for our time. An upper west side apartment building has a new owner, and the residents are spooked. Why are their neighbors steadily disappearing? Why are the Norwegians being confined to the top floor? And what are the intentions of their landlord, who has yet to keep any of his promises? The reading, directed by Laura Ekstrand, will feature Nicole Callender, Clark Carmichael, Kat Choe, Noreen Farley, Scott McGowan and Jason Szamreta.

Richard Dresser’s plays have been produced in New York, regional theater, and Europe. They include Rounding Third, which started in Chicago, appeared off-Broadway and has had hundreds of productions.  It was recently made into a film starring John C. McGinley and Garret Dillahunt for release in 2016.  Below the Belt and Gun-Shy, both started at the Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville before moving off-Broadway.  Below the Belt was made into the film  “Human Error” directed by Robert M. Young which appeared at Sundance.  His trilogy of plays about happiness in America includes Augusta (working class), The Pursuit of Happiness (middle class), and A View of the Harbor (upper class).  Other plays are: The Last Days of Mickey & Jean, Something in the Air, The Downside, Alone at the Beach, Wonderful World, and Better Days, plus many short plays. ​

The readings are at the Oakes Center, located at 120 Morris Avenue in Summit.  Admission is $10, and tickets can be purchased at www.dreamcatcherrep.org or by calling Brown Paper Tickets at 800-838-3006. The parking lot is accessible from Ashwood Avenue, behind the theatre. For information on any of Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre's programs, please contact Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre at the Oakes Center, 120 Morris Avenue, Summit, NJ 07901, 908-514-9654, www.DreamcatcherRep.org.

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