ANGELS IN AMERICA
PART I: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES &
PART II: PERESTROIKA
By Tony Kushner, Directed by Jason Loewith & Ryan Rilette
Co-produced with Olney Theatre Center
Part of A CELEBRATION OF TONY KUSHNER
September 7 – October 30, 2016
Just in time for election season, Round House Theatre and Olney Theatre Center present the 25th Anniversary production of Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning masterpiece. Sexuality, religion, and politics collide at the beginning of the AIDS crisis in one of the most celebrated plays of the 20th century. Don’t miss Part I: Millennium Approaches & Part II: Perestroika, presented in rotating repertory.
Please be advised that Millennium Approaches and Perestroika contains nudity, strong sexual content, and adult language.
Run Time: Millennium Approaches runs approximately three hours. Perestroika runs approximately three hours and 40 minutes.
ABOUT THE PARTNERSHIP
Round House Theatre and Olney Theatre Center have announced a two-year commitment to co-produce outstanding plays in Montgomery County. The first,Angels in America by Tony Kushner, will be presented in the fall of 2016, with a second theatrical event planned at Olney Theatre Center in the fall of 2017.
Tony Kushner grew up in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and attended Columbia University and New York University. Kushner is best known for his two-part epic, Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes. His other plays include A Bright Room Called Day, Slavs!, Hydrotaphia, Homebody/Kabul, and Caroline, or Change, the musical for which he wrote book and lyrics, with music by composer Jeanine Tesori. In 2012 he wrote the screenplay for Spielberg’s movie Lincoln. His screenplay was nominated for an Academy Award, and won the New York Film Critics Circle Award, Boston Society of Film Critics Award, Chicago Film Critics Award, and several others. In addition, a revival of Angels in America ran off-Broadway at the Signature Theater and won the Lucille Lortel Award in 2011 for Outstanding Revival. The first part of Angels in America, Millennium Approaches (1990), won a Pulitzer Prize and a Tony Award for best play; the second, Perestroika (1991), also won a Tony Award for best play. Angels in America proved to be extremely popular for a work of its imposing length (the two parts run seven hours in total), and it was adapted for an Emmy Award-winning television film that aired in 2003. His recent work includes a collection of one-act plays entitled Tiny Kushner, and The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures. He received the National Medal of Arts in 2013.
Jason Loewith has made theater as a producer, director, playwright and dramaturg in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and now Washington, DC. As a playwright, he won Lucille Lortel, Outer Critics Circle, and Jeff Awards for Best New Musical for Adding Machine: A Musical, which he co-wrote with composer Joshua Schmidt. He produced the world premiere at Chicago’s Next Theatre Company (Next) in 2007, where he served as Artistic Director from 2002-2008. That production went on to a six-month run Off-Broadway in 2008, winning four OBIE Awards for direction, design and performance. Mr. Loewith directed a dozen regional and world premieres at Next, where his programming twice received the After Dark Award for Outstanding Season (03-04 and 05-06), and work that he directed or produced won multiple Jeff, After Dark, and Black Theatre Alliance Awards and received critical accolades from Chicagoland’s major media outlets. Since moving to Washington in 2009, Mr. Loewith has directed new plays for Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre, DC’s Studio Theatre, and Baltimore’s Everyman and CENTERSTAGE, where he also served as Associate Producer for Special Programs. During that time, Mr. Loewith served as Executive Director of the National New Play Network (NNPN), the country’s alliance of theaters that champions the development, production, and continued life of new plays. Mr. Loewith was a Theatre Communications Group (TCG) New Generations mentorship grantee in the first year of the program. His book The Director’s Voice, Volume 2 was published by TCG in 2012.
Ryan Rilette is entering his fifth season as Artistic Director of Round House, where he directed The Night Alive by Conor McPherson, This by Melissa James Gibson and How to Write a New Book for the Bible by Bill Cain. Prior to joining Round House, he served as Producing Director of Marin Theatre Company for five years. For MTC, he has directed the world premieres of Bellwether by Steve Yockey and Magic Forest Farm by Zayd Dohrn. He also directed God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza; Fuddy Meers by David Lindsay-Abaire; Boom by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb; and In The Red and Brown Water by Tarell Alvin McCraney, the first part of The Brother Sister Plays Trilogy, which MTC co-produced with American Conservatory Theatre and Magic Theater, and which was named “the theatrical event of the year” by the San Francisco Chronicle. Prior to joining MTC, Rilette served as Producing Artistic Director of Southern Rep Theatre, the leading professional theater in New Orleans, from 2002 to 2007. At Southern Rep, he directed the world premieres of The House of Plunder by Jim Fitzmorris, The Vulgar Soul by John Biguenet, and The Sunken Living Room by David Caudle; and the regional premieres of Edward Albee’s The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?, In Walks Ed by Keith Glover, and Kimberly Akimbo by David Lindsay-Abaire. He also commissioned, developed, and directed two plays about Hurricane Katrina and its effect on the region: Rising Water by John Biguenet and The Breach by Tarell Alvin McCraney, Catherine Filloux, and Joe Sutton. Rilette is the co-founder and former Artistic Director of Rude Mechanicals Theatre Company, the immediate past president of the National New Play Network, and a former professor at Tulane and Loyola universities in New Orleans. He earned his MFA in Acting from American Conservatory Theatre.
PRE-SHOW FOR MILLENNIUM: SETTING THE SCENE
The year: 1985. The place: New York. The mood: apocalypse. Join a member of our staff on Wednesdays and Thursdays before performances as they provide context and background for the play you’re about to see. Discuss the progression of HIV/AIDS, the rise of Reaganism, and the setbacks to gay rights as we provide you with an introduction to Angels’ key themes.
PRE-SHOW FOR PERESTROIKA: PREVIOUSLY ON ANGELS IN AMERICA…
From the destruction of Millennium Approaches rises a new work: Perestroika. Before the second half of your Angels experience, discuss major plot points, character arcs, and themes. Delve into the twists and turns of Millennium in order to prepare yourself for Perestroika.
September 7, 2016 – Design Discussion, Post-Show Discussion
September 9, 2016 – Director Discussion
September 14, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
September 15, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
September 16, 2016 – #FreeBeerFriday
September 28, 2016 – Director Discussion
October 2, 2016 – Post-Show Panel Discussion (details below)
October 5, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 6, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 7, 2016 – #FreeBeerFriday
October 9, 2016 – Post-Show Panel Discussion (details below)
October 12, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 13, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 14, 2016 – #FreeBeerFriday
October 16, 2016 – Post-Show Panel Discussion (details below)
October 19, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 20, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 21, 2016 – #FreeBeerFriday
October 23, 2016 – Post-Show Panel Discussion (details below)
October 26, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 27, 2016 – Pre-Show Discussion
October 28, 2016 – #FreeBeerFriday
Panels: Angels in Conversation
Over the four weeks of October, join our four panels of experts to discuss the broader themes of Angels in America: the HIV/AIDS epidemic, LGBTQ rights, spirituality, and the play’s own dramatic legacy. Continue the conversation after each October Sunday matinee performance, and truly engage with this epic work.
Medicine: October 2 following the matinee performance
15,527 sick. 12,529 dead. Angels in America opens as the plague of HIV/AIDS continues to swell, with no end in sight. The only hope lies in an experimental treatment called AZT, which has just begun its first human trials. Our panel of NIH experts recounts their race against time to stem the tide of HIV/AIDS, as present-day activists discuss the continued—and underreported—struggle to eradicate the epidemic once and for all.
Dr. David Morens, Senior Scientific Advisor, NIH
Dr. Victoria Harding, author of 30 Years of AIDS
Devin Barrington-Ward, Director of Communications, Whitman-Walker Health
Law: October 9 following the matinee performance
“We will be citizens,” Tony Kushner promises at the end of Angels in America—and history seems to have vindicated his optimism. On the twenty-fifth anniversary of Kushner’s masterpiece, the LGBTQ community has won marriage equality, a repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” and mainstream political acceptance; but the fight is far from over. Our legal panel explores both the triumphs and setbacks of the 21st century, including the ongoing state-level legal backlash against LGBTQ rights.
Hayley Gorenberg, Deputy Legal Director, LAMBDA Legal
Zack Ford, LGBT Editor, ThinkProgress
Religion: October 16 following the matinee performance
“In my church,” Mormon character Harper asserts, “we don’t believe in homosexuals.” Yet Angels in America goes on to reveal a far more complex vision of sexuality and religion, one that seeks to reconcile faith and acceptance. Our panel of faith leaders from the DMV area discusses their own organizations’ efforts to unite these two concepts, while also engaging in a broader conversation about the true nature of a personally and spiritually fulfilling worldview.
Pastor Tim Hughes, Brown Memorial Church
Representatives from 6th and I, and Affirmation DC
Legacy: October 23 following the matinee performance
Two parts, eight acts, thirty-one characters—Angels in America is not a small play, nor was its creation a small task. Join us as our panel explores the story behind the saga, from the play’s conception to its first production at the Eureka Theatre to its impact on American culture, all through oral history and firsthand accounts.
Isaac Butler, co-author of Angels in America: The Oral History
Tom Kamm, Angels in America original scenic designer