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Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Luna Stage welcomes Kareem Badr to the cast of Heartland

Luna Stage welcomes Kareem Badr to the cast of Heartland, playing April 4-April 28. Badr is featured alongside Brian Corrigan and Lipica Shah in Gabriel Jason Dean’s love story set in Nebraska and Afghanistan, directed by Luna Stage Artistic Director Ari Laura Kreith.

Described as "a magical new play about family, grace, and the consequences of defending an American Empire,” Heartland is Luna’s fourth MainStage play this season. Weaving back and forth through time in an exploration of literature, language, religion, and culture, Heartland delves into the uncertain terrain of love, moral responsibility, and what it truly means to care for one another.
“A charming and charismatic Kareem Badr” (Austin Chronicle) recently performed in the double-hander Woman in Black at Austin’s Scottish Rite Theater, in a “performance that [was] simultaneously meticulous and effortless” (BroadwayWorld), and for which he was named one of Austin Chronicle’s Top 10 Theatrical Performances of 2017. An actor, improviser, and teacher based out of Austin, TX, Badr is co-owner of The Hideout Theatre, and performs and teaches internationally with his improv troupe PGraph.

“I am thrilled that I get to be part of this beautiful show,” says Badr. “It's such a rare gift as an actor to get to tell a story that is both global and so intensely personal in scope. I know that this play is going to tug on the heartstrings of our audiences and I truly can't wait to experience it with them.”
Tickets are $16-39, and are available at LunaStage.org/Heartland or by calling 973-395-5551. A limited number of premium Opening Night tickets are available for $59, which includes the post-show party with cast and creative team.

About the Artists
Kareem Badr is an actor, improviser, and teacher based out of Austin, TX. He is thrilled to be making his Luna Stage debut in Heartland. Recent stage credits include The Actor in Woman in Black, Brigham Young in For Time and Eternity, and Nazrullah in Vortex Rep's production of Heartland in Austin. He is a co-owner of The Hideout Theatre, and performs and teaches internationally with his improv troupe PGraph.

Brian Corrigan’s performance experience includes… Theater: Measure for Measure, As You Like It, The Taming of the Shrew, Gun Shy, Below the Belt, Sylvia, Baby with the Bath Water, All in the Timing, El Grande de Coca-Cola. Film & Television: The Blacklist, Inside Amy Schumer, Master of None, The Late Show, Forever, House of Cards, Law & Order SVU, Blow Out, Being There, Best Friends. Over 40 years of radio and television commercials, primarily as a voice actor.

Lipica Shah is a New York City-based actor/singer who thrives on collaborative work and has a passion for new script development. Luna Stage: Debut! Select NYC: India Pale Ale and Cost of Living (MTC), Assembled Identity (HERE), Bunty Berman Presents… (The New Group), Coping (Fringe); Select Regional: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Orange, Passing Strange, and simultaneously originating the title roles in The Chronicles of Kalki and Shiv as part of the “The Displaced Hindu Gods Trilogy” (all at Mixed Blood), The Lake Effect (Geva Theatre), The Who and The What (Gulfshore Playhouse); Select Film/TV: A Silent Voice, Admission, Time After Time, The Following, White Collar, Pokémon, Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin. She is on the leadership team of Kalakars, an organization that nurtures South Asian and South Asian-American talent in front of and behind the camera. www.LipicaShah.com

Gabriel Jason Dean’s plays have been seen or developed throughout the U.S. at theatres such as New York Theatre Workshop, Manhattan Theatre Club, McCarter Theatre, The Flea, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and American Theatre Company. In Bloom was a finalist for the Laurents/Hatcher Award, received the Kennedy Center’s Paula Vogel Prize, and was runner-up for the Princess Grace. His play for children, The Transition of Doodle Pequeño received the AATE Distinguished Play Award, the NETC Aurand Harris Award and has been anthologized numerous times. Other notable plays include Terminus (2016 Austin Critic’s Table “Best Drama”) and Qualities of Starlight (2016 Broadway Blacklist, Kesselring Nominee). Fellowships include the Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, the Dramatist’s Guild Fellowship and the Sallie B. Goodman/McCarter Theatre Fellowship. Dean is currently an affiliated writer at The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis and a usual suspect at New York Theatre Workshop. He earned his MFA at the University of Texas at Austin’s James A. Michener Center for Writers.
Ari Laura Kreith recently directed Luna’s production of Pirira. She is also the founder and Artistic Director of Theatre 167, where she conceived and directed The Jackson Heights Trilogy — three full-length plays collaboratively written by 18 playwrights featuring 37 actors in 93 roles in 14 languages. NYC World Premieres: Mourning Sun (Theatre 167/Uganda), Pirira, Tina Howe’s Singing Beach. European premiere: Adam Guettel’s Myths and Hymns. Immersive, site-specific: Queens Museum, NY Transit Museum; touring excerpts of Marina Budhos’ novel Watched. Commissions: New Ohio; Queens Theatre. LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award; NYIT Caffe Cino Fellowship. BA: Yale, MFA: UC Davis, Member: SDC. www.arilaurakreith.com
About Luna Stage
Luna Stage develops and produces vibrant plays about local and global experiences. Luna brings communities together for artistic events that spark conversations and create understanding and change. Firmly rooted in New Jersey's Valley Arts District—a crossroads of cultures—the Company celebrates the diverse voices that surround us. Luna Stage is dedicated to eliminating barriers to participation and nurturing the next generation of audiences and artists.
Luna’s classes for children and adults, and its developmental programs for early career artists, inspire community members to nurture their own creativity and vision.
Luna Stage has contributed to the development of over 80 new works for the stage, earning a reputation for artistic excellence. Some of those plays have gone on to productions in New York City and beyond. Luna’s unique approach to producing, as well as the work itself, fosters an environment of inclusivity, understanding, and infinite possibility.

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