FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press contact: Lucy Pollak
[email protected] (818) 887-1499 (for media only)
World premiere of ‘Rapunzel Alone’ returns
to 24th Street Theatre April 9 – May 1
LOS ANGELES (REVISED April 7, 2022) — 24th Street Theatre’s world premiere production of Rapunzel Alone, presented in association with the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, returns to the 24th Street venue April 9 through May 1 following a two-weekend run at The Wallis. To increase audience accessibility, all performances feature Spanish supertitles.
Commissioned by 24th Street and written by Olivier Award-winning playwright Mike Kenny (Walking the Tightrope), Rapunzel Alone is the story of Lettie, a young mixed-race girl from London sent to the countryside for her own safety during the daily bombings of World War II. On an isolated country farm, Lettie faces her own battles with a strict new guardian and a very “fowl” goose.
24th Street initially commissioned Kenny in 2019, pre-pandemic, to adapt the classic fairy tale in response to increasing isolation among teens coming of age in the world of social media. Then everything changed. Over the course of the past two years of pandemic, lockdown, social uprising, election, insurrection, climate calamities and war, the play continued to evolve as the world changed around us.
“The play is about our need for connection,” says 24th Street Theatre artistic director Debbie Devine, who co-directs with Jesús Castaños–Chima. “How the consoling power of connection heals the agony of isolation.”
Tara Alise Cox, William Leon and Jacquelin Lorraine Schofield star, with playwright Kenny providing narration and puppeteer Matt Curtin bringing ornery Gertrude the Goose to life. The original score is composed by pianist Bradley Brough.
“I’m a fan of historical fiction, but rarely see anyone who looks like me in that genre,” says Cox, a mixed-race actor who stars as Lettie.
Theater critic Ernest Kearney calls the production “a magical, mythical morality play not to be missed… a celebration of everything that is magical about the theatrical experience… hints at the “maiden-in-the-tower” motif while invoking a far more powerful spirit… examines the tragic realities which imprison life through the prism of a child’s viewpoint.”
24th Street Theatre, a multiple award-winning professional theater company, has created a name for itself as leading producer of emotionally rich and provocative productions for families. Rapunzel Alone can be enjoyed by adults, as well as by kids ages 7 and up.
“It’s non-generational theater,” explains 24th Street executive director Jay McAdams. “Theater for the whole family that doesn’t look, taste or smell like children’s theater.”
The creative team for Rapunzel Alone includes scenic and puppet designer Keith Mitchell; video designer Matthew G. Hill; lighting designer Dan Weingarten; sound designer Jeff Gardner; costume designer Shannon Kennedy; and graphic designer Tara Nitz. Casting is by Michael Donovan, CSA and Richie Ferris, CSA. “Lettie’s Journal” was created by high school student Leah Abazari under the mentorship of Hill. Spanish translation is by Jesús Castaños–Chima and supertitles are by Aleida Montejo. The production stage manager is Ethan Niven. Jennie McInnis produces for 24th Street Theatre.
Mike Kenny is one of the England’s leading writers, specializing in young people’s theater. He is the recipient of numerous awards, was included in the Independent on Sunday’s list of Top Ten Living UK Playwrights and his plays are performed regularly throughout the UK and all over the world. In 2013 he was given an Honorary Doctorate of Letters by Nottingham University, England.
24th Street Theatre is a multiple award-winning professional theater company with a unique connection to its local inner-city community: the giant green doors to the theater (a historic 1928 carriage house located on the edge of L.A.’s historic West Adams historic district) are literally kept open to the street every day. Neighborhood residents, homeless people, local kids, students and visiting parents from nearby USC, and others stop in daily for coffee, conversation or to access educational, cultural and social service resources. Founded in 1997 as a more traditional theater, the community needs changed the theater’s focus from simply creating high caliber art to using that art to make a difference in the lives of the local neighborhood residents. With a mission to engage, educate, and provoke its diverse community and city with an eclectic array of high quality artistic programming, 24th Street Theatre serves over 10,000 people annually: 6,000 children and youth, and 4,000 adults, the majority of whom are low-income. The 24th Street brand, marked by resolute commitment to the integrity of the work and a heightened, minimalistic style, is reflected in its arts education programs as well as in its mainstage productions for families.
Performances of Rapunzel Alone continue at 24th Street Theatre April 9 through May 1, on Saturdays at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. (no matinee on Saturday, April 9; dark on April 17). Tickets are $24 for adults; $15 for students, seniors and teachers; $10 audiences under 18; and $2.40 for residents of the theater’s surrounding North University Park neighborhood. 24th Street Theatre is located at 1117 West 24th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007 (at the intersection of 24th and Hoover). To purchase tickets and for more information, call (213) 745-6516 or go to www.24thstreet.org.
Details for Calendar Listings
24th Street Theatre’s world premiere production of Rapunzel Alone, presented in association with the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, returns to the 24th Street venue following a two-weekend run at The Wallis. Lettie, a young mixed-race girl from London, is sent to the countryside for her own safety during the daily bombings of World War II. On an isolated country farm, she faces her own battles with a strict new guardian and a very “fowl” goose. Appropriate for ages 7+.
• Written by Mike Kenny
• Directed by Debbie Devine and Jesús Castaños–Chima
• Music composed by Bradley Brough
• Starring Tara Alise Cox, William Leon, Jacquelin Lorraine Schofield
• Narration by Mike Kenny
• Puppeteer (Gertrude the Goose): Matt Curtin
• Presented by 24th Street Theatre in association with the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts
April 9 – May 1:
• Saturdays at 3 p.m.: April 16, April 23, April 30 (no matinee on April 9)
• Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.: April 9, April 16, April 23, April 30
• Sundays at 3 p.m.: April 10, April 24, May 1 (dark April 17)
24th Street Theatre
1117 West 24th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90007-1725
• Adults: $24
• Under 18: $10
• Family Four Pack (2 adults & 2 children): $40
• Seniors, Students and Teachers: $15
• Preview tickets: $5
• North University Park residents (with ID): $2.40
(213) 745-6516 or www.24thstreet.org
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