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People Not Plot Points

9 Apr
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Lisa Tejero as Linda and Colin Sphar as Daniel.

We’re in the final weekend of About Face Theatre‘s critically-acclaimed and audience-adored production of after all the terrible things I do in Chicago, and we’re just about to start the final week of Ma-Yi Theatre Company‘s critically-acclaimed and conversation starting production of House Rules in New York.

I am incredibly grateful to the directors, casts, and creative teams of both these shows and incredibly proud of the work we’ve done, not just because it’s fun to put on a show. I’m also excited that so many people in the theatre — audiences, artists, and journalists — have responded so positively to stories centered on people who seldom get to be the most important people in their own stories.

You have three chances left to see after all the terrible things I do and nine chances left to catch House Rules. Don’t miss them! Get tickets here and here.

In that vein, take a look at this article published on Playbill last week in which Olivia Clement interviewed the cast of House Rules and myself about the play and Asian-American stories.

Why We Need to Start Telling a Different Kind of Asian-American Story (Playbill, April 7, 2016)

House Rules

Tina Chilip as Twee, Jeffrey Omura as JJ, James Yaegashi as Rod, and Tiffany Villarin as Momo

And here’s an interview of me from Stage Buddy talking about being a writer of color, developing work, and the Ma-Yi Labbies’ pursuit of world domination.

Interview: 5 Questions with “House Rules” Playwright Rey Pamatmat (Stage Buddy, April 6, 2016)

And if you want to hear me and a bunch of people WAY COOLER THAN ME speak in person about diversity in the theatre, the McCarter Theater and Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts has organized a day long symposium commemorating the 20th anniversary of the delivery of August Wilson’s speech “The Ground from Which I Stand.” The event is called The Ground On Which We Stand: Diversity and Opportunity in the American Theatre, Twenty Years After August Wilson’s Foundational Speech. I’ll be around for the whole symposium and will participate in the second panel that day “The Ground from Which We Step: Wilson’s Legacy and Our Contemporary Conversations” with Vivienne Benesch (who, by the way, taught me acting one summer a million years ago!), Polly Carl, Jade King Carroll, and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins.

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Lisa Tejero as Linda and Colin Sphar as Daniel.

I’d love to see you there. More importantly, though, come see the shows to experience the work and ideas in action and to support the “normalization” of the American Theatre (I’ve got some issues with using the word “diversity” — sue me). Those ticket links again are here for terrible things and here for House Rules.

More Positive terrible things

29 Mar

AFtt ReviewsThe good news keeps on rolling in. Two more great reviews of About Face Theatre‘s after all the terrible things I do came out this weekend.

REVIEW: after all the terrible things I do (Chicago Theater Beat, March 28, 2016)

Buzz-eriously! 3 reasons to see after all the terrible things I do from About Face Theatre (Buzz On Stage Chicago, March 29, 2016)

I am so thrilled by the show and that Chicago has welcomed it with open arms. I love that city so much, and I’m glad I could contribute something meaningful to their theatre scene. Don’t miss this chance to see the amazing, critically-acclaimed work of Andrew Volkoff, Colin Sphar, and Lisa Tejero. There are ten performances left!

I Posted Too Soon

23 Mar

Time Out Chicago reviewed About Face’s production of after all the terrible things I do half a day after I posted all those other ones, and they gave us 4 stars!

“[A] smart and keenly acted About Face Theatre production… after all the terrible things I do, like O’Hara’s “Poem,” is a quietly evocative consideration of forgiveness.”

REVIEW: after all the terrible things I do (Time Out Chicago, March 23, 2016)

SERIOUSLY, EVERYBODY, GO BUY TICKETS NOW. Don’t do that thing where you try to go in the last week, and you can’t get in even if you pay full price. See it now, or at least get your tickets. There’s even a promotion for $20 matinee seats if you use the code AFT20 going that probably won’t last much longer considering all these amazing notices.

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Excellent Reviews for terrible things at About Face Theatre

23 Mar

AFtt JeffIn terms of critically acclaimed productions, after all the terrible things I do is officially three for three. Congratulations to Andrew and everyone at About Face Theatre!

“Pamatmat… upends the pat notions we may have about the dynamics of homophobia and bullying…. Andrew Volkoff’s handsome production has much to recommend it, especially in the nuanced give-and-take between Sphar and Tejero, from good-natured teasing to spiky anger.”

‘after all the terrible things I do’ lets words drive the action (Chicago Tribune, March 22, 2016)

“Andrew Volkoff’s staging for About Face Theatre offers dynamic performances by Colin Sphar as a young, gay writer with a big secret and Lisa Tejero as an aging bookseller with one of her own.”

REVIEW: after all the terrible things I do (Chicago Reader, March 22, 2016)

“A lacerating drama by A. Rey Pamatmat… magnificently mined by Andrew Volkoff….”

Chicago Theater Review: after all the terrible things I do (Stage and Cinema, March 19, 2016)

“I highly recommend this beautiful, engaging performance. If history tells us what happened, it is shows like this that tell us why.”

REVIEW: About Face Theatre’s ‘after all the terrible things I do’ (Showbiz Chicago, March 19, 2016)

“Pamatmat’s writing deftly and eloquently explores people grappling with things they regret, but can’t put right… Andrew Volkoff’s production and his two outstanding actors tell a story that shows people at their ugliest and most vulnerable, and still treats them with great sensitivity… a highly rewarding drama.”

REVIEW: after all the terrible things I do (Chicago Critic, March 21, 2016)

“…a highly polished and authentic two-hander brimming with humor, mystery and drama.”

Strong work in AFT’s after all the terrible things I do (Third Coast Review, March 21, 2016)

“Highly recommended. About Face Theatre is on a roll.”

REVIEW: after all the terrible things I do (Around the Town Chicago, March 18, 2016)

Don’t miss out! Get tickets here before About Face’s production of after all the terrible things I do closes on April 10th.

An Opening, a Tech, A. Rey, and a Jeff

18 Mar

Following an awesome opening night performance, About Face’s Chicago premiere of after all the terrible things I do is a Jeff recommended show! Not a bad way to start off a run, right?

AF TTDo. Not. Miss. Out. Go early in the run as there is no possibility of extension. Don’t say I didn’t warn you! Here are some pretty production photos to whet your whistle.

HR PosterMeanwhile, I’m already in tech for Ma-Yi Theatre Company’s world premiere of House Rules, which begins previews in New York next Friday, March 25. As I’ve mentioned before, this cast and creative team are so stupidly talented. I really can’t wait until you see what we’ve come up with, so click here for show info. You can also visit Ma-Yi’s blog where the theatre has been posting Q & As and bios with the creative team and cast.

And look at that poster — I love that poster! It’s an actual sculpture assembled and photographed by Noah Scalin.

And then of course there’s this craziness:

Tickets for terrible things are here for you Chicago folks, and tickets for House Rules are here for my New Yorkers.

Finally, for more info about both shows and about me, American Theatre published a profile of me yesterday to coincide with my two show spring. Having my work honored this way is wonderful, but the fact that the article also honors the awesome artists, theatres, and institutions that supported me blows my mind. Thank you to Suzy Evans and everyone else at American Theatre, as well as May, Ralph, Andrew, and all the rest!

This Time It’s Personal for A. Rey Pamatmat (American Theatre Magazine, March 17, 2016)

terrible Press for Chicago’s terrible Opening Tomorrow

16 Mar

12829304_10153490204373977_7762546481561146278_oOpening night for About Face Theatre’s Chicago Premiere of after all the terrible things I do is right around the corner! We’ve been tinkering with the show a bit in previews, and I’m excited for you to see the results. This cast and creative team made me fall in love with Chicago all over again (which, come on, wasn’t hard to do), and as you can see from preview audience responses posted in these images, Chicago has been in love with us!

In advance of tomorrow’s show, The Windy City Times interviewed Andrew Volkoff and me about the show. Check it out here:

New About Face Theatre Production Explores Race, Sexuality, and Identity (Windy City Times, March 16, 2016)

And, in case you missed it, the show has been on multiple must-see lists for Chicago in March, like Time OutChicago Magazine, and the Windy City Times itself.

The show runs until April 10th, so get your tickets now!

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after all the terrible things I do

by A. Rey Pamatmat
directed by Andrew Volkoff

A gripping and intimate new play from one of American theatre’s rising stars explores the dark side of ordinary people, second chances, and the price of forgiveness.

Returning to his Midwestern hometown after college, Daniel, a young, gay writer, takes a job at the local bookstore he knew as a child. After he and Linda, the Filipina bookstore owner, begin working together, they discover they share a dark connection that goes much deeper than a love of literature.

With Colin Sphar and Lisa Tejero

Presented by About Face Theatre
Theater Wit, 1229 West Belmont Avenue
Chicago, IL
Previews, March 11 – 13, 2016
Performances, March 17 – April 10, 2016

Get Tickets Here

terrible Chicago Weekend

21 Feb

aatttid-slider-2I was fortunate enough to spend time in rehearsal with About Face‘s production of after all the terrible things I do this weekend. They’re almost midway through their process and doing excellent work! Hanging out with Artistic Director and director of the play Andrew Volkoff was great, and  Colin Sphar and Lisa Tejero  are having a lot of hilarious (and sometimes scary) fun with Daniel and Linda.

There’s information about the production on Broadway World and on About Face’s website and tickets are already on sale here. The theatre is just coming off of a big hit with a production of Philip Dawkins’s beautiful play Le Switch, which has meant tickets for our show have already been selling. Don’t get shut out! I’m serious. BUY NOW.

I’m excited to rejoin everyone for previews March 11 – 13, and I hope that I either see you there or that you catch the show later in the run!

Snowy Wyoming

16 Feb

IMAG1796As you may already know, I’ve been tucked away in Wyoming since the beginning of this month thanks to the wonderful people at the Sundance Theatre Institute and the Ucross Foundation. I don’t think I’ve ever needed a retreat more in my life, and I don’t think I’ve ever been on a retreat quite as wonderful as this one in my life, either. Thank you to any and everyone who made this possible.

One of my goals coming out here was to recover from an overwhelming winter and to prepare for a busy spring. Now that I finally feel more myself, I thought it was probably a good idea to update my website and emerge from hibernation! Thanks for checking in even though I haven’t kept you posted about my activities. I’m going to be much more diligent in the coming weeks.

To start, when the Ucross retreat ends this Friday, I’m heading directly to Chicago where Andrew Volkoff and the folks at About Fact Theatre are already in rehearsals for the Chicago premiere of after all the terrible things I do. I’m so excited for this cast and production. While I’m only in town for this weekend of rehearsals, I’ll be back for previews on March 11th. Get your tickets now and join us at Theater Wit!

terrible PostcardWe’ll leave it there for now. I’m going to post a couple of historical things just because I use this website as a record of plays sometimes, and I’ll also post soon about Ma-Yi’s world premiere of House Rules, for which we’re starting rehearsals next week.

More soon!

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Another Two Show Spring!

15 Sep

That’s right! It looks like Spring 2016 has decided to mimic Spring 2015 only in two separate cities.

Ma-YI LogoFirst, the world premiere news! In March 2016, my newest play House Rules will be produced by The Ma-Yi Theatre Company at HERE Arts Center, directed by Ma-Yi Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña. To say that I am bouncing off the walls that this play is being mounted by my primary artistic incubator would be an understatement. I’m in pain, y’all, IN PAIN from all this bouncing off walls, floor, ceiling, down stairs… OW!!! And for this season my show will come just after Washer/Dryer by Nandita Shenoy (a fellow member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab of which I’m currently co-director) and a remount of Lloyd Suh’s The Wong Kids in the Secret of the Space Chupacabra GO! (who was co-director of the Lab for much of my membership and Artistic Director of 2g when they mounted the world premiere of Thunder Above, Deeps Below). This spring will truly be a family affair, pushing the boundaries of new Asian-American playwriting and (particularly with this season) comedy. WE GOT JOKES.

There’s an official announcement for Ma-Yi’s full season on Broadway World. Please ignore the blurb for my show, though. It got kind of cut up and weird somewhere down the line. If you need a blurb, check this out:

House Rules by A. Rey Pamatmat. Rod thinks the game is fixed. Momo’s still learning the rules. Twee doesn’t think winning is enough. JJ hates his hand. And why the hell is Henry still playing? Two families (and some guy named Henry) panic with hilarious and heart-breaking results when they realize their parents won’t be around forever. Can anybody prepare for the inevitable moment when they’re the ones left holding all the cards?

AFlogoAlso, you may have already heard since they announced in July (whoops, sorry), after all the terrible things I do will be seen next March in About Face Theatre’s 25th Anniversary Season, directed by AF Artistic Director Andrew Volkoff! I’m thrilled not just for the Chicago premiere (you know how much I love that city!!!), but because the other shows in the season are by artists for whom I have the deepest admiration. A new play by Philip Dawkins and a Bonnie Metzgar-directed production of The Five Lesbian Brothers’ The Secretaries is the very definition of being in esteemed company. I am so honored and grateful to be in the same sandbox as these folks, and if I were a Chicago resident, this is a season to which I would subscribe in a heartbeat (HINT HINT).

afterall-nodate1More news to come!

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