The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and count Leo Tolstoy: Discord
directed by David Harewood
Comedy – Regional Premiere – A Founding Father, a Victorian literary celebrity, and a Russian aristocrat/anarchist clash in a provocative new comedy that pits three of the world’s greatest minds against each other in a battle of wits and wills. Jefferson, Dickens, and Tolstoy find themselves locked in a room with no exit. Attempting an escape, they ransack the philosophies of their lives and work, searching for a truth that will set them free. From playwright and former stand-up comedian Scott Carter (writer of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher), this whip-smart comedy examines just what happens when great men of history are forced to repeat it.
Comedy – World Premiere – A hilarious comedy set in the heart of Appalachia where two estranged bothers push sibling rivalry beyond absurdity to the point of death. Jimmy returns home after drifting from coast to coast for 20 years to help his brother find the remains of their dead father, whom they buried beneath the cabin floor decades ago. The state has taken possession of the property to build a road through the cabin and the two brothers must find their father’s remains before the state does. As they excavate, the paternal twins dig up much more than bones in this twisted and sardonic comedy. Imagine a Cohen Brother’s version of Sam Shepard’s True West.
Drama – Midwest Premiere – Seamlessly blending the personal and the political, Grounded tells the story of a hot-rod F16 fighter pilot whose unexpected pregnancy ends her career in the sky. Repurposed to flying remote-controlled drones in the Middle East from an air-conditioned trailer near Vegas, the Pilot struggles through surreal twelve-hour shifts far from the battlefield, hunting terrorists by day and being a wife and mother by night. A tour de force play for one actress, Grounded flies from the heights of lyricism to the shallows of workaday existence, targeting our assumptions about war, family, and the power of storytelling.
Drama – Central Ohio Premiere – Waiting to Be Invited is the true tale of three black women who summoned the courage to test the Supreme Court decision on integration by riding in the front of the bus on their way to stage a sit-in at an all-white lunch counter in Atlanta. Based on the experiences of the author’s grandmother, this riveting story allows us to see the effect that the civil rights movement had on the feelings and actions of average citizens.
Romantic Drama / Revival – RHP originally produced the play in 1996 – With her signature offbeat humor and fierce passion, the author of Keely and Du and other well known plays examines the many labors of love in a modern comedy of manners. While most romances focus on the search for Mr. or Ms. Right, Jack and Jill explores what happens after two people find the right fit. From an awkward courtship to marital bliss and beyond, the author playfully portrays the hard work of love that requires balancing intimacy with commitment, self discovery, and personal change.
Comedy / Revival – RHP originally produced the play in 1997 – Set in Edward Hopper’s classic painting, Nighthawks is a tongue and cheek tribute to film noir in this lighthearted and fun murder mystery. Columbus playwright Johnrick Hole brings to life the four characters in Hopper’s painting to find out just who killed Bernie the Bookie. Was it Jerry the counter man who has an unhealthy obsessive passion for his pies, Don the gambler who owed Bernie a lot of money, or Flo the mysterious redhead with an old score to settle. Sarge, the Detective, asks the questions and turns the screws to get to the bottom of this madcap and silly comedy.
World Premiere – Working in collaboration with Avanza Together, Red Herring has adapted stories of hardship and heroism of migrants who have traveled from Mexico and central America to make their home among us in our community. Many undocumented Americans have lived in the U.S. for decades, worked and paid taxes and started and then raised families. This play documents their stories and explains why they chose to leave their homes, how they crossed thousands of miles to sneak across the U.S., to make their homes amongst us, and help us build our community. En Común reminds us that America a nation of immigrants and our greatest strength is our diversity.
Regional Premiere – In a pre-industrial landscape, an unsettling and threatening love triangle emerges between the young woman, the ploughman and the hated miller. As the young woman journeys from ignorance to knowledge, her liberation is found through language and her need to name things to understand their place and how they fit into her world. “I look at a tree and say tree and walk on. But there is more of the tree that is god which I have no names for. Each day I want to know more. A puddle I can see under. A tree when it is blown by the wind. A carrot that is sweeter than the others. The cold earth under a rock. The warm breath of a tired horse. A man’s face in the evening after work. The sound a woman makes when no one hears her. I now know I must find out the names for myself.” Knives in Hens is a remarkable play about the transformative power of knowledge and an emerging consciousness as the world moves from rural to the urban and industrial.
Regional Premiere – Winner of the 2016 Tony Award for Best Play The Humans is an uproarious, hopeful, and heartbreaking play that takes place over the course of a family Thanksgiving dinner. It is the quintessential family reunion: a group of people who dearly love each other but still wrestle with basic human fears; old age, abandonment, poverty, and death. The Humans is a perfectly balanced piece of theatre that consists of equal parts of humor and hurt.
when the animals took christmas
directed by Steve Emerson & Mark Hale, Jr.
The animal kingdom strikes back in this delightfully cheeky Christmas musical for the whole family. Pop culture, politics, Broadway and literature all get a send up in this original musical theater experience. Created by Steve Emerson and The Meowhatten Project, 4-time winners of The Columbus Improv Wars and produced by Red Herring Productions this clever holiday musical will have you laughing into the New Year!