Lucy Thurber - The Hill Town Plays
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Rattlestick's annual festival will present a series of new plays in several prominent West Village theaters, based around one playwright or common theme. The goal is to involve the collaboration of many producing partners, deepening community engagements and audience experiences. This year, we're launching the festival with Lucy Thurber's The Hill Town Plays. Theater:Village signifies a major shift in the ways theaters work. It challenges the assumptions that we must cut back and compete more fiercely with each other in order to survive as nonprofit arts institutions, and promotes collaboration and community-conscious programming to expose emerging audiences to essential new work they would not otherwise be able to see.

About The Hill Town Plays:
The Hill Town Plays is a cycle of five plays: Scarcity, Ashville, Where We're Born, Killers and Other Family, and Stay. Each play investigates a pivotal stage of the main character's life, spanning from a childhood in rural Western Massachusetts, through college and coming to terms with her sexual identity, and onto adulthood as a successful author. The cycle is an examination of the culture of poverty in America; how we are always a part of where we come from, and yet our future is determined by who we choose to be. We all come with these stories we've created; urban or rural, we have narratives we construct as a means of survival. Often they keep us from allowing others to know us, to touch the parts of ourselves we kept secret in order to remain whole. The Hill Town Plays examine how, in order to overcome the past, we have to accept the fact that it takes courage to live in the present.

An Introduction to Theater:Village by New Dramatist's Todd London (PDF 152K)

About the theaters:

Axis Theatre
Axis Company (Artistic Director, Randy Sharp) was formed with a mission to present aggressive surrealism, classic vaudeville turns and vanguard adaptation. Past productions include Beckett's "Play", Benjamin Baker's 1848 vaudeville "A Glance at New York" (Edinburgh & NYC), "Last Man Club" (2013 Drama Desk nomination) and the U.S. premiere of Sarah Kane's "Crave", starring Deborah Harry. Axis has also produced the premiere of Edgar Oliver's "East 10th Street" (NY Times Critic Pick; Fringe First Award: Edinburgh; Spoleto USA 2011). Beginning in October 2013 Axis will present their newest original play centering on Houdini's crusade against false spirit mediums in the early 20th century.

Cherry Lane Theatre
Cherry Lane's mission is to cultivate an urban artist colony, hone its groundbreaking history, and engage audiences in creating theater that illuminates contemporary issues, and at its best, transforms the spirit. Situated in a landmark building in Greenwich Village, Cherry Lane Theatre serves as a vital lab for the development of new American works and a home for groundbreaking productions of both new and classic theatre of the highest caliber. As New York's longest continuously running Off-Broadway theatre, Cherry Lane has helped to define American drama, fostering fresh, daring, and relevant theater since 1924.

The New Ohio Theater
New Ohio Theatre is a two-time OBIE Award-winning performance venue that serves the vast independent theatre community of New York and the adventurous audiences who love it. As a small, downtown, artist-run organization with a twenty-plus year history as a beacon for bold and inventive work, we know the challenges and rewards of producing and presenting alternative, groundbreaking theatre. In any given year, there are over 500 independent theatre companies working for opportunities to develop and present new work. We believe the best of this community operates at the core of the contemporary theatre conversation (about both content and form) and acts collectively to expand the boundaries of the public imagination.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater
"If you want to support a writer, produce the first five plays he writes." – August Wilson. The mission of Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is to provide a positive, nurturing experience for emerging playwrights, to present diverse and challenging plays that otherwise might not be produced and to foster the future voices of American theater. Although there are other companies that showcase new playwrights, there are very few who can match Rattlestick's focus, achievement and continuing support from a play's inception to its final production.

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