The Israel Horovitz Project
Submitted to: Theatre 
Posted: November 03 2006

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3 November 2006 (Jewswire.com) - One of America’s most celebrated and produced playwrights, Israel Horovitz, will be launching a new theater company in NYC that has been 32 years in the making. This February will mark the start of a producing wing of The New York Playwrights Lab, a “secret society” founded by Horovitz in 1975. The new company’s 1st offering will be the NYC premiere of Horovitz’s newest play The Secret of Mme. Bonnard's Bath. Prior to the official launch of the New York Playwrights Lab, there will be the production of Horovitz’s Lebensraum, directed by Jonathan Rest, with previews beginning Wednesday, December 13, 2006, press opening Sunday, December 17, and running through December 30, 2006 at Theatre Row Theatre, Produced by Studio J Productions in association with Erika Feldman and Adam Fitzgerald (kef productions). And in January, Israel Horovitz’s New Shorts, the NYC premiere of nine new Horovitz plays, opens at the 78th Street Théàtre Lab, presented by Barefoot Theatre Company (Francisco Solorzaro Artistic Director, Victoria Magvalno, Managing Director).

"Powerful and touching” is how the NY Times described Israel Horovitz’s Lebensraum. A cast of three actors create an ensemble of over eighty characters in Lebensraum. Horovitz’s daring comic-drama is based on the premise that a German Chancellor might, as an act of redemption, invite six million Jews to relocate in Germany, with promises of citizenship and employment. Lebensraum follows an out of work Jewish dock-worker from Massachusetts to Bremerhaven, an Auschwitz survivor who returns to Berlin to find the woman who betrayed his family to the Nazis, a young German girl who falls in love with a teenaged Jewish American “new citizen”, and scores of others. Ultimately, Lebensraum explores the roots of WWII, and the terrifying possibility that history may well repeat itself in our time.

Cast includes: T. Ryder Smith (Drama Desk nom, Underneath the Lintel, Thom Pain), Suli Holum (Currently Live Girls – Urban Stages, Film: Say Yes Quickly, Two Headed Calf), and Ryan Young (most recently with the RSC, in Britain). Creative team includes: Susan Zeeman Rogers (NEA/TCG award winner for scenic design), Chris Bailey (lighting and sound design) and Samantha Miller (costume design).

Lebensraum

Begins performances December 13; Opening Sunday, December 17 – December 30, 2006

Performances are Wednesday – Saturday at 8PM; Saturday at 2PM; Sunday at 3PM

Theatre Row’s Kirk Theatre is located at 410 West 42nd Street

Tickets are $18. Please visit www.ticketcentral.com or call 212 -279-4200

Israel Horovitz’s New Shorts

Begins performances Wed,, January 17, Opening Sat., January 20 – February 4, 2007,

New York Playwrights Lab presents

The Secret of Mme. Bonnard's Bath

Performances February – March, 2007, at Theatre Row Theatre

Press dates for Lebensraum are: Thursday 12/14; Friday, 12/15;

Saturday 12/16 at 2/8; Sunday 12/17 opening.

Dr. Rest and Mr. Horovitz are available for interviews.

Please contact Springer Associates PR (212 354 4660) to arrange press seats or interviews.

Bios:

ISRAEL HOROVITZ (playwright) is author of more than 50 produced plays, several of which have been translated and performed in as many as 30 languages, worldwide. Horovitz plays have introduced such notable actors as Al Pacino, John Cazale, Richard Dreyfuss, Jill Clayburgh, Marsha Mason, and Gerard Depardieu. In 1975, Horovitz founded the New York Playwrights Lab, and remains the Lab’s Artistic Director. Mr Horovitz was honored with The Massachusetts Governor’s Achievement Award, as well as Boston's prestigious Elliot Norton Prize, both for his work with the Gloucester Stage Company, which Horovitz founded 27 years ago. He has won numerous writing awards, including the OBIE (twice), the EMMY, the Prix de Plaisir du Théâtre, The Prix du Jury of the Cannes Film Festival, The Prix Italia (for radio plays), The Christopher Award, The Drama Desk Award, an Award in Literature of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, The European Academy Award, a Lifetime Achievement Award from B'Nai Brith, The 1996 Literature Prize of Washington College, an honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Salem (Massachusetts) State College, and many others. In 1979, Horovitz co-founded The Gloucester Stage Company in Massachusetts as a "safe harbor for playwrights and new plays". Under Horovitz's artistic direction, Gloucester Stage produced more than 50 world premieres. Plays developed at Gloucester Stage have gone on to critical and popular acclaim on Broadway, off-Broadway, across the United States, and around the world. Mr. Horovitz visits France, frequently, where he often directs French premieres of his plays. He is the most-produced American playwright in French theatre history.

JONATHAN REST (Lebensraum director ) is a free-lance director based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He served as the Artistic Director of the Jewish Theatre of Pittsburgh (JTOP) for four years, where his production of Lebensraum was the most successful non-musical production in the theatre’s history. His work has also been seen in New York, and several regional theatres. Rest is also a writer. His multi-media presentation entitled Cosmic Chemistry ran at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Science Center for three years. He was on the writing staff for the CBS/Paramount Television series “Diagnosis Murder” for 3 seasons. Rest received the 1999 Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Internship Award for single camera directing. He is a member of the Lincoln Center Director’s Lab, and a graduate of Carnegie-Mellon School of Drama where he received his MFA in 1999. He also holds an M.D. degree from the University Of California San Francisco School Of Medicine. He completed a residency in Family Medicine at UCLA and practiced medicine in Berkeley, California for twelve years before returning to graduate school for his MFA in directing. During his years in practice, he appeared on several television and radio stations as a medical reporter, including KRON and KCBS in San Francisco and KTVU Oakland, California. He was selected as one of the best family doctors in the Bay Area by San Francisco Magazine.

NEW YORK PLAYWRIGHTS LAB was founded in 1975 by Israel Horovitz as a ‘secret society”, with an ever-changing group of 15 professionally-produced playwrights. Over the years, NYPL writers have included such distinguished playwrights as Horovitz, Wendy Wasserstein, Peter Parnell, David Rimmer, Michael Brady, Elizabeth Diggs, Neena Beber, Nicole Burdette, Erin Cressida Wilson, Max Mayer, Kenneth Lonergan, Frank Pugliese, Dan Reitz, Matthew Weiss, Jonathan Marc Sherman, Warren Leight, and many others. NYPL writers begin a new play on the same day in autumn, meet frequently throughout the year to read and critique pages from their developing plays. In its 32 year history, virtually every play ever written in the New York Playwrights Lab has been produced professionally. Horovitz’s new company will produce a three or four play season at Theatre Row Theatre, each year, to showcase a combination of well-known plays from the New York Playwrights Lab’s past, and world premieres of new plays from the current Lab membership. The first official production of this new producing company will be Mr. Horovitz’s The Secret of Mme. Bonnard's Bath, which had a highly successful world premiere at Gloucester Stage, this past summer.

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