Performances: October 7-26, 2008
Opening/Press Night: October 10, 2008 7:30 pm
Live Theatre Week: Stonecarving Open Studio Tour 10/13 6-8pm
Free Night of Theater 10/16
Seattle WA, -- Much like stonecarvers themselves, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center Artistic Director Jacqueline Moscou and local playwright Daniel W. Owens have been perfecting, sculpting, and shaping the play Bobbie and Jerome for over four years. They met in 1992 and planned for years to work together. In 2004 Owens asked Moscou to set up an early reading and work through some rewrites. Immediately Moscou said yes, and together they readied Bobbie and Jerome for the LHPAC stage.
Connecting with the Stonemason's Union and a seasoned stone carving professional to consult was crucial to the play's development and success. West Seattle stone carver Sabah Al-Dhaher joined the creative team and was tasked with leading a special intensive "Stonecarving Boot Camp" for the playwright, director, and actors. "I will never look at a rock the same way again! My hands are still recovering," says local actor G. To'mas Jones. who plays the role of Bobbie.
Bobbie and Jerome is the captivating story of two cousins fighting their addictions, their joined past, and each other. The complex art of stone carving is at the play's core and an authentic depiction of the craft is crucial to the play's success. Errol is the "Stone Yard's" master mason who admires both Bobbie and Jerome for their talent as stone carvers, but also fears for their futures. Set in the stone yard of a gothic Harlem cathedral in 1998, this world premiere drama opens a lens into the lives of two men struggling to save the Stone Yard and settle a past score.
"Bobbie and Jerome embodies everything LHPAC is about. We create a home for African American arts and its artists, and are dedicated to the development of new works," says Jacque Moscou. Throughout Bobbie and Jerome's development process LHPAC has pooled creative resources and connected with many different corners of the artistic community. Moscou continues, "Art transforms people's lives. This play drives that message home. Personally, connecting with art through stonecarving has been a blast!"
On October 13 the general public is invited to get a taste of "Stonecarving Boot Camp" and chat with the actors, director, playwright, and local stone carver Sabah Al-dhaher at his open studio tour. This free event will be held from 6-8 pm at 3838
Delridge Way SW and is part of Theatre Puget Sound's Live Theatre Week.
LHPAC always encourages new audiences to experience the thrill of Live Theatre. October 7 is a "Pay-What-You-Can-Preview" performance and LHPAC will participate in Live Theatre Week's FREE Night of theatre on October 16th.
plays Jerome and
Bobbie and Jerome is recommended for ages 12 and older. Performances will be held at Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center at 17th & Yesler in Seattle. Previews are Oct.7-9 at 7:30 pm. Opening Night is October 10 at 7:30 w
ith a special "Taste of Harlem" reception afterwards. Shows run Thursdays - Sundays at 7:30 p.m. with 2 p.m. matinees on Saturdays and Sundays (no 2 p.m. matinee on Oct 26).
Advance ticket prices are $20 for adults; $15 for youth and seniors; and $24 day of show at the door. A special discount is offered to groups of 10 or more. Ticket Line: 206-386-1177. Tickets are available at the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center and through Brown Paper Tickets: www.brownpapertickets.com or 1-800-838-3006.
play Mutambi and Lindstrom was read in 2006 at the McCarter Theater in Princeton, New Jersey. Stage/screen and television actor John Amos read the role of Mutambi. Owens' The Measuring Stick [aka The Chisler] was staged in 2003 as part of the 2nd Annual Seattle FringeACT Festival of New Original Works. He wrote the book for the musical Little Ham which received "rave" reviews in the New York Times and The New Yorker in December 2001. Little Ham was also produced Off-Broadway in the Fall of 2002. He also wrote the book for The MoreYou Get - The More You Want, which was produced Off-Broadway by the FDCAC. In 2002 his play Forever My Darlin' had an extended run at Chicago's ETA Theater. And in the summer of 1999 Mutambi and Lindstrom was produced at the 15th Annual National Black Theater Festival in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
In 1997, Owenswas commissioned by Seattle's ACT Theatre, as part of their "FirstACT" play development project, to write Aunt Lou and Miss Sara. His 1992 play, The Gang on the Roofd his work produced by: The New Federal Theater, The Frederick Douglass Creative Arts Center (FDCAC), The Negro Ensemble, The George Street Playhouse (New Brunswick, New Jersey), and The Westport Summer Playhouse (Westport, Conn.). He was twice a participant in the Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights Conference (Waterford, Conn.) and was the recipient of a Rockefeller Grant for Playwriting. Mr. Owens graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Boston with a B.A. in English, attended Yale School of Drama, and receivedhis M.Ed. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is a native of Malden, Massachusetts and currently lives in Seattle with his daughter Gabriela. was one of six grant recipients from the Fund for new American Plays - Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. That play was successfully produced by the Capital Theater Company in Albany, New York. While living in New York City Mr. Owens ha
Sabah Al-Dhaher was born in Nasriyah, Iraq. At the age of fifteen he was accepted to the Institute of Fine Arts in
Basra, Iraq, where he lived and received his training in classical art, graduating
first in his class in 1989. Al-Dhaher fled Iraq in 1991 due to his involvement in a failed uprising against the regime of Saddam Hussein at the end of the first Gulf war. After spending 2 ? years in a refugee camp in the desert of Saudi Arabia, he came to the U.S. as a political refugee in 1993. Al-Dhaher currently teaches stone carving at the Pratt Fine Arts Center in Seattle. Visit www.aldhaher.net for more information.