Photo Flash: Gayfest NYC Presents MOTHER TONGUE
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by BWW News Desk
GAYFEST NYC, Inc., (Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman,Producers), the country's premier producer of new LGBT-themed plays, continues its FourthAnnual Festival, a five-week event (May 6 - June 6, 2010) filled with new theatre worksspotlighting gay issues, with the world premiere of the new play Mother Tongue written by F. J. Hartland with direction by Margarett Perry. Performances began May 13, 2010 for a limitedengagement through Sunday, May 23, 2010 in the Dorothy Strelsin Theatre at the Abingdon TheatreArts Complex (312 West 36 th Street). Opening night is Friday, May 14, 2010.
Mother Tongue is play about a young painter who finds his life turned upside down by a new loverwith a mysterious past and a mother pursuing a career as a stand-up comedian. Whose side will hetake?The 3-member cast features Jake Paque as Matt, Kevin Spirtas as Cale and J.J. VanName as Bertie. The creative team includes Michael Hotopp (Set), T. Michael Hall (Costumes), and JesseBelsky (Lights). The Production Stage Manager is Andrea Wales.Mother Tongue will play the following performance schedule: Tuesdays - Saturdays at 8:30 p.m.and Sundays at 6:30 p.m. with a special matinee performance on Saturday afternoon, May 15 th at 2:00 p.m.Currently in performance through May 16 th is the U.S. premiere of Romeo and Hamlet by writtenby R. Jonathan Chapman and Kevin Stefan and directed by Sidney J. Burgoyne. The Festival concludes with the world premiere of the new musical This One Girl's Story (inspired bythe proud life of Sakia Gunn and based on a true story) with Book by Bil Wright, and Music andLyrics by Dionne McClain-Freeney with direction by Devanand Janki (May 27 - June 6, 2010, June Havoc Theatre).
Tickets are now on sale atwww.Theatermania.com or by calling 212-351-3101. For additional information log onto: www.GAYFESTNYC.com.
Sponsors of GAYFEST NYC include American Airlines, Macy's, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Bud Light, GreyGoose Vodka, Lladro, Sutter Home Vineyards, DG Neary Real Estate, Jamie deRoy, Sutter HomeVineyards, Starbright Floral Design, The Protein Bakery, Bamboo 52/Philip Marie, Burgers & Cupcakes, Theatermania.com and media sponsors including the Village Voice, Back Stage, EdgePublications, Next Magazine, GO! Magazine, FunMaps, Mark Nelson Events, HHC Marketing andothers. GAYFEST NYC receives generous support from the Office of the Manhattan BoroughPresident."GAYFEST NYC's mission is twofold," said Jack W. Batman, co-Producer of the festival. "First, todevelop new voices for the LGBT community and, in doing so, expand the reach and accessibility ofboth emerging and established playwrights, composers and lyricists while providing high levelentertainment to a discerning and supportive audience. The second part of our mission is to giveback.
To that end, through our fundraising efforts and the generosity of our sponsors, advertisersand supporters, we have established a scholarship fund to benefit students of Harvey Milk HighSchool," continued Batman. "Since 2007, GAYFEST NYC, Inc. has awarded twenty-threescholarships to graduating seniors and established an accredited elective Playwriting program at theschool." Harvey Milk High School (HMHS) is a fully-accredited, voluntary NYC public high schoolfocused on the educational needs of teenagers who are in crisis or at risk of physical violence and/oremotional harm in a traditional educational environment. "GAYFEST NYC, Inc. is also committed to producing plays that will have a life outside the Festival,"said Bruce Robert Harris, co-Producer of GAYFEST NYC, "plays that will represent the Festival inproductions around the English-speaking world and which might also be brought to life in televisionand/or film presentations.
Board members of GAYFEST NYC, Inc. include Lily Tomlin, TerrenceMcNally, Charles Busch, Douglas Carter Beane, Mario Cantone, Kate Clinton and a distinguishedgroup of Broadway producers, actors, writers, artistic and executive directors of regional theatresplus other entertainment professionals."
Photo credit: Gustavo Monroy