SEXSTING to Make West Coast Premiere with Katselas Theatre, 2/23
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by BWW News Desk
Winning a Guthrie Theatre commission, and chosen for development by The Katselas Theatre Company's INKubator program, the West Coast Premiere of SEXSTING is the inaugural production for KTC's 2013 season. Opening at the popular Skylight Theatre Complex on February 23rd, the stellar cast includes Gregory Itzin (Tony, Drama Desk, and Emmy Award nominee), JD Cullum (Stones in His Pockets-Mark Taper Forum, Of Equal Measure-Kirk Douglas Theater), The Cripple of Inishmaan (Geffen Playhouse).
Based on true events: Predator or prey? Posing as a 14-year-old girl, an FBI agent goes online with unexpected results as seductions are being carefully plotted. Can a man be arrested for a fantasy, for an intention? Who draws the line between fantasy and crime?
DORIS BAIZLEY (Playwright) is a founding member of LA Theater Works. At the Mark Taper Forum she served as Dramaturge for the Other Voices Program and, for seven years, was resident playwright for the Taper's Improvisational Theater Project for young audiences. Currently, Doris leads a playwriting workshop at East West Players' David Henry Hwang Writers' Institute. The first incarnation of her play SEXSTING, written in collaboration with Oakland criminal defense attorney Susan Raffanti, won the 2004 Guthrie Theater/Playwrights' Center "Two-Headed Challenge" development grant and was produced by the Salt Lake City Acting Company in 2007. Selected plays include Mrs. California (CBS/Dramatists Guild Award), Catholic Girls, (LA Dramalogue Award), Tears Of Rage (recorded on L.A. Theatre Works' "The Play's the Thing" with Frances Conroy, Barbara Bain, Anthony Edwards and Ping Wu), Guns, a musical with music by Harry Aguado, which will be presented by KTC later this season. Daniel In Babylon, Agnes Smedley: Our American Friend, and an adaptation of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol have been performed at US regional theaters such as Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Cleveland Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum, National Theater of the Deaf, and internationally at the Semafor Theater in Prague and the Icon Theater in Taipei. Selected screenplays: Until She Talks (with Pamela Reed, directed by Mary Lampson, American Playhouse, 1984), nominated for Best American Playhouse Screenplay Land Of Little Rain (with Helen Hunt, directed by Evelyn Purcell, American Playhouse 1987), winner of Denver Center for the Performing Arts Best Western Screenplay.
SEXSTING opens February 23, 2013 and runs 8pm Fridays & Saturdays, and 7pm Sundays through April 14, 2013. The Skylab Theatre Complex is located at 1816 1/2 N. Vermont, LA, 90027. Tickets are ($30 - $34). Reservations: 702 KTC-TKTS (702-582-8587) or online at www.katselastheatre.com.
"The Guthrie Theatre and The Playwrights' Center in Minneapolis commissioned a play for collaboration between a playwright and someone from outside the theatre. The contest was called "The Two Headed Challenge," and SEXSTING won. Criminal defense attorney Susan Raffanti told me about an influx of FBI Internet sex sting cases she and her colleagues were handling and the description of these cases quickly led to discussions of identity, guilt, sexuality, and justice. Text and subtext, brought intrigue and legal dilemma. Through KTC's INKubator series, I was able to re-write and fully develop the piece around its essential conflict." - Playwright Doris Baizley
JIM HOLMES (Director) is a multi-award winning director (including Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for his direction of Avenue A), whose work has been seen regionally and in New York, Off Broadway at the 29th Street Repertory Theatre. He spent seven seasons at the New Mexico Repertory Theatre, where he directed Brecht's Happy End and Shakespeare's Othello as well as playing a host of classical and contemporary roles, including the role of "Jerry" in the world premiere of Mark Medoff's Stumps. His film The Corndog Man, an independent feature, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Jim directed the short film Mystery Cave, which premiered at the Filmstock International Film Festival in England. Jim received his MFA from the California Institute of the Arts.
Gary Grossman (Producer/Artistic Director) started his career in New York at The Public Theatre, Café La Mama, and Sheraton Square Playhouse. He has produced over 300 stage plays, including more than 50 world premieres. Among his celebrated productions are Romeo and Juliet directed by Milton Katselas (3 LADCC Awards), Dylan (3 LADCC Awards), Dream Man, Lone Star, Balm In Gilead, Four, The Tenth Man, Visions and Lovers, Rabbit Hole, La Ronde De Lunch, Influence, and Mad Women. In addition to his work for the Katselas Theatre Company, Gary has produced for the prestigious Matrix Theatre Company, where he was associated with the celebrated productions The Homecoming, Endgame, and The Seagull. For television he co-produced Sadie and Son (CBS) and the sitcom pilot Man In The Kitchen (ABC). He is the Executive Producer for award-winning director Chuck Workman's documentary, The Actor's Life.
THE KATSELAS THEATRE COMPANY is widely respected for its history of developing artists (actors, musicians, writers, designers, and directors) while helping to create the next generation of theatre goers - thus its passion for new original plays that speak to today's audiences. In just the last two years, KTC has produced 12 World Premiere productions including INFLUENCE (2010 Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle nomination for Best Actor and two LA Weekly nominations for Best Play and Best Production), HERMETICALLY SEALED (2011 Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle nomination for Best Actress, an LA Weekly nomination for Best Ensemble and the LA Times List of top ten productions for 2011) and MAD WOMAN (2011Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle nomination and an LA Weekly nomination for Best Solo Performance). KTC programs, (INKubator, SoloMojo, KTC Playwrights Lab, KTCKids, KTC Underground and NewVoices), its educational workshops - even its main stage productions are designed to help the artist find their unique voice and achieve their vision....and audiences love it! All by itself, in just two small theatres, KTC's monthly INKubator series (launched Jan 2011) has premiered new works-in-progress by more than forty Los Angeles writers ages 17 to 80 for over 1200 audience members. Adding audience "chats" and quarterly follow-ups with the artists to monitor their progress; the entire venture has been an unqualified success.
Gregory Itzin (Richard Roe) is a Tony Award and Drama Desk Award nominated actor for his role in the Pulitzer Prize winning play The Kentucky Cycle, and a two time Emmy nominee for his work on the television series 24, as Vice President Charles Logan, who became "President," by his second season on the show. He starred on Broadway as Kenneth Lay, in Enron and he is a member of the Matrix Theatre Company in Los Angeles, where credits incluce the award winning production of Waiting For Godot, The Homecoming, and The Birthday Party (he received a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for each). He appeared on stage as Louis de Rougemont in the world premiere of Donald Margulies' Shipwrecked! An Entertainment at South Coast Repertory, and subsequently revived at the Geffen Playhouse. Gregory is a member of Anteaus Theatre and was seen as the Earl of Kent in their production of King Lear, for which he received a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award. Numerous screen credits include roles in Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, I Know Who Killed Me, and Law Abiding Citizen with recurring roles on television series such as Friends, Murder One, Star Trek, NCIS, and The Mentalist. He currently has a recurring role on Covert Affairs.
JD CULLUM (John Doe) was recently seen in Absurd Person Singular at South Coast Repertory, and starred in Moliere's The Bungler Much, and Ado About Nothing (A Noise Within). Notable productions include Stones in His Pockets (Mark Taper Forum), Side Man (Pasadena Playhouse), Of Equal Measure (Kirk Douglas Theater), The Malcontent (Antaeus Company), The Foreigner (Odyssey Theater), The Cripple of Inishmaan (Geffen Playhouse), and Waiting for Godot (Matrix Theatre Company). He will soon be seen in The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp. TV appearances include: The Mentalist, The Newsroom, The Event, Madmen, The Closer, Lie to Me, and Weeds. His voice can be heard on many video games, radio commercials and as the character "Mini" for Kellogg's Frosted Mini Wheats.
WOLFIE TRAUSCH (Jason/Tastygirl) was seen in Kathryn Graf's critically acclaimed (LA Times - CRITICS CHOICE) Hermetically Sealed. Other credits credits include the teen comedy film Barely Legal, the Russian Miniseries, Alien Persona, and the National Geographic movie Party Like an Emperor.
Additionally, featured performers include: Bonnie Brewster, Danielle Marie Gavaldon, Christian Lynons, and Carl Weintraub
DESIGN TEAM: Jeff McLaughlin (Set and Lighting Designer), Christopher Moscatiello (Sound Designer)