Press Release: FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER: LISA KRON IN REPERTORY

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For Immediate Release
December 27th, 2016
Contact: Cara Hanhurst – 619-220-6830 x105
Press@Diversionary.org
SAMANTHA GINN AS "LISA" IN WELL & SHANA WRIDE AS "LISA" IN 2.5 MINUTE RIDE. PHOTO CREDIT: SIMPATIKA

SAMANTHA GINN AS “LISA” IN WELL & SHANA WRIDE AS “LISA” IN 2.5 MINUTE RIDE. PHOTO CREDIT: SIMPATIKA

Who: Diversionary Theatre will produce the San Diego Premiere of WELL and the San Diego Revival of 2.5 MINUTE RIDE, both by Tony Award-winner Lisa Kron, presented for the first time in repertory.

What: 2.5 MINUTE RIDE, starring Shana Wride* and directed by Rosina Reynolds & WELL, starring Samantha Ginn and Annie Hinton* and directed by Kym Pappas.

When: February 9th – March 19th. Performances run Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7pm, Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays at 2pm & 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm & 7pm.  There are two Monday performances: Monday, February 27th at 7pm & Monday, March 6th at 7pm.
Where: The Diversionary Theatre Mainstage in University Heights at 4545 Park Boulevard, San Diego CA 92116.
Tickets: Are available one month prior to performances and range from $15 – $45. Discounts are available for Seniors, Educators, Students, Groups, and Military. To be notified of ticket sales, please sign up for the Diversionary Theatre Email List:http://diversionary.org/mailinglist/

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THE CAST OF WELL : L-R, TIFFANY TANG, DURWOOD MURRAY, SAMANTHA GINN, ANNIE HINTON, CASHAE MONYA AND ADAM CUPPY. PHOTO CREDIT: SIMPATIKA
San Diego, CA

This Spring, Diversionary continues its tradition of presenting innovative theatre. For the first time in history, two plays by Tony Award Winner Lisa Kron (Broadway’s FUN HOME) will play in rotating repertory. As female playwrights continue to fight for equal representation  in the American theatre, THE KRON REP offers a heaping dose of gender parity. In both 2.5 MINUTE RIDE and WELL, the playwright’s life gets catapulted onto the stage. These two autobiographical(ish) plays delightfully fracture theatrical structure, turning conventional notions of theatre on its head.

Diversionary brings together Craig Noel Award winners Shana Wride* and Rosina Reynolds for an artistic tour-de-force in the San Diego revival of 2.5 MINUTE RIDE. In this breakout hit first seen at La Jolla Playhouse in 1996,  Shana Wride plays Lisa and takes her audience on a roller coaster ride to investigate her relationship with her father through three life events: a family outing to an Ohio amusement park, a wedding in a Brooklyn Jewish Community Center, and a searing trip to Auschwitz. Kron demonstrates remarkable skill in combining humor and pathos in this 75 minute portrait of a loving and complex man and father. Rosina Reynolds, last seen at Diversionary with THE MARRIAGE BED, directs.

In WELL, Lisa (played by San Diego favorite Samantha Ginn, SCROOGE IN ROUGE) “comes from a family where everyone is ill.” And now she wants to know why. Lisa tells the tale of her mother Ann, (played by Annie Hinton*, A CIVIL WAR CHRISTMAS) a champion of social justice. Ann works tirelessly to integrate her midwestern town, despite her inability to cure her own chronic illness. Lisa’s struggle to create the play she wants is thwarted by both rebellious actors (gleefully played by Adam Cuppy,Cashae Monya, Durwood Murray and Tiffany Tang) and her mother’s desire to “help” tell the story.  Lisa fights to define both the narrative and her relationship with her mother to hilarious and poignant consequences. Kym Pappas (Co-Artistic director of InnerMission Productions) directs.

Executive Artistic Director Matt M. Morrow says of this Repertory: “Lisa Kron made theatre history last year when she and her writing partner were the first female musical theatre writing team to win the Tony Award for Best Musical. I’m beyond thrilled to celebrate her playwriting genius by pairing these two remarkable pieces together for the first time.”

Audiences are encouraged to experience The KRON REP in its entirety – special package pricing is available for guests who choose to see both WELL and 2.5 MINUTE RIDE – call the Box Office at 619-220-0097 for more information.

*Actors Appear Courtesy of Actor’s Equity Association

More information can be found atwww.diversionary.org/kronrep

High Resolution Photos are available: http://bit.ly/2i3DZz7

For interviews and additional materials, please contact Cara Hanhurst, Connectivity Manager at 619-220-6830×105 or by emailing Press@diversionary.org

SPECIAL EVENTS:

Low Cost Previews Thursday, February 9th
Thursday, February 16th
First Fridays

To say thank you to those that serve, Diversionary offers complimentary tickets to Active Duty, Veterans and their families. Email Cara@Diversionary.org for more information.

Friday, February 10th at 8pm
(WELL)
Opening Night

Pre-and post show festivities – celebrate with the cast and company sponsored by our Events Partners, Chi Extraordinary Kitchen and Plumeria Vegetarian.

Friday, February 17th at 8pm
(2.5 MINUTE RIDE)& Saturday, February 18th at 8pm (WELL)
Industry Night

Theatre Professionals enjoy a special discount to our only Monday evening performance!

Monday, February 27th at 7pm (WELL)

& Monday, March 6th at 7pm
(2.5 MINUTE RIDE)

Backstage Thursdays: Designer Spotlight

Join us in Fritz’s Lounge before the show to meet the Design Team, see a display of the concepts used in producing the show and hear the influences and process involved. Hosted hors d’oeuvres round out a fun pre-show experience! The party starts at 6pm before the 7pm performance.

Thursday, February 23rd at 6pm
(2.5 MINUTE RIDE)
Backstage Thursdays: Director Happy Hour 

Join Directors Kym Pappas and Rosina Reynolds in Fritz’s Lounge for hosted hors d’oeuvres and a chance to chat before the show! Pre Show reception at 6pm, performance at 7pm.

Thursday, March 2nd at 6pm (WELL)

& Thursday, March 9th at 6pm
(2.5 MINUTE RIDE)

Backstage Thursdays: Next Act

Next Act is your opportunity to mix and mingle with the stars of the upcoming show: BALLAST! They’ll be available to answer questions about the production, and you’ll benefit from complimentary appetizers! Join us starting at 6pm before the 7pm show.

Thursday, March 16th at 6pm
(WELL)
THE CAST

2.5 MINUTE RIDE

Shana Wride*: (Lisa) seen at Diversionary in Baby with the Bathwater,The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler, Next Fall and A Late Snow. Other acting credits include-  Faded Glory and Broken Glass (North Coast Repertory Theatre); Much Ado About Nothing (Intrepid Theatre); Private Lives (Cygnet Theatre);  Women Who Steal, A Christmas Carol, SudsWorking, Six Women with Brain Death (San Diego Repertory Theatre); A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, Merry Wives of Windsor (Shakespeare Festival Los Angeles); Indoor/Outdoor (The Colony Theatre); Macbeth, Fen, Wooden Breeks, Measure for Measure (Open Fist Theatre); Heidi Chronicles and Lips Together, Teeth Apart (Gaslamp Theatre);  Henry IV Parts 1 & 2, Love’s Labor’s Lost (Idaho Shakespeare Festival); New, Shadowy WatersNo Time Like The Present (Sledgehammer Theatre).  Directing credits include: The WhaleMistakes Were Made (Cygnet Theatre), Walter Cronkite is Dead (San Diego Repertory Theatre), Boys & Girls and Anita Bryant Died for Your Sins (Diversionary Theatre), Or (Moxie Theatre) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Compass Theatre).  She co-hosted the nationally syndicated radio show, “Women Aloud” with actor/comedienne Mo Gaffney.

WELL

Adam Cuppy (Ensemble) is honored, truly honored, to be back at Diversionary. Previously for Diversionary: A Civil War Christmas; As an Associate Artist for Next Stage Rep: Joe Sutter in The Spitfire Grill, Jeffrey Hatcher in Mrs. Mannerly, Henry Harry in Brilliant TracesEmil in Three Viewings, Jim (the gentleman caller) in The Glass Menagerie.  Elsewhere: The Belle’s StratagemRoom Service and The History of Dr. Faustus (Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Tom Wingfield in The Glass Menagerie (ArtAttack Theatre). adamcuppy.com.

Samantha Ginn (Lisa) Is thrilled to be back at Diversionary!  Other Diversionary credits include Scrooge in Rouge and Senor Phil’s Casa del Haha. Samantha graduated from Sonoma State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre Arts.  Some acting credits include:  When It Comes (The Old Globe Creative Catalyst), The Weir, Sylvia, The Miss Firecracker Contest, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Much Ado About Nothing (New Village Arts), She-Rantulas from Outer Space in 3D! (New York Fringe Festival), The Car Plays (La Jolla Playhouse), Trouble in Mind, Hickorydickory (San Diego Critics Circle Award), Coming Attractions (Moxie Theatre), Edgar and Annabel/Far Away (ion theatre), Seminar, Dog Sees God (InnerMission Productions), and The Warrior’s Duet (Circle Circle dot dot).  Recent artistic endeavors include writing for Bedrooms and Boyfriends at the San Diego Fringe Festival and teaching her acting class, Monday Night Live! (with Kids Act), which is geared for young adults with special needs to create their own sketch comedy show.

Annie Hinton*  (Anne) Diversionary  Theatre, Civil War Christmas. Regional: Old Globe Theatre, The Hostage (Jack O’Brien); Seattle Repertory Theatre, Our Town (Dan Sullivan); A Contemporary Theatre; Empty Space Theatre; Seattle Children’s Theatre; and New Mexico Rep. Local: Ion Theatre, Grey Gardens; San Diego Rep, The Clean House; Cygnet Theatre, Book of Liz, A Christmas Carol, Private Lives; North Coast Rep, Importance of Being Earnest, Travesties, Glorious.  Film/TV: Bring It On; 29th & Gay; The Jenni Project (Disney); Veronica Mars and many others.  MFA University of Washington.

Cashaé Monya (Ensemble) is pleased to back at Diversionary after spending last holiday season on this stage in Civil War Christmas. Recent credits include: Miss You Like Hell and Memphis (The La Jolla Playhouse); Ruthless!, Our Lady of Kiebho, Trouble in Mind, Crumbs From the Table of Joy, Counterweight: The Elevator Love Play and The Bluest Eye (Moxie Theatre); Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill and Chicago: Speakeasy Caberet (Ion Theatre); Little Shop of Horrors and Our Town (Cygnet Theatre); You Can’t Take it With You and The Glory Man (Lamb’s Players). Upcoming: The Revolutionists (Moxie).

Durwood Murray (Ensemble) Diversionary;A Civil War Christmas; New Village Arts;To Kill A MockingbirdOne Flew Over the Cuckoo’s NestOf Mice and Men; Ion;The Little Flower of East Orange.

Tiffany Tang (Ensemble) Tiffany was last seen on the Diversionary stage as The Extra in Amazons and Their Men and could not imagine returning with a more fantastic group of talent.  Local theatre credits include MacbethRomeo and Juliet (Intrepid); Longview TXThe Vagina Monologues (InnerMission); Derbywise, Invasion (Circle Circle dot dot); Lifestages: Reflections, S.R.O. (Playwrights Project); A Shayna Maidel, Almost Maine (Carlsbad Playreaders). NYC credits include New York Theatre Workshop, Cry Havoc, Jaxx Theatricals and Gallery Players. Recent film credits include Thane of East County, A Life Lived (Frazzled Man Productions); Reality Bytes (GrooveKo). Tiffany is the author of Creepy Little Death Poems. BA: Mount Holyoke College MFA: Actors Studio Drama School.

THE CREATIVE TEAMRosina Reynolds (Director, 2.5 Minute RideDiversionary Theatre: 2.5 Minute Ride; Marriage Bed; Happy Endings are ExtraTwilight of the GoldsBeautiful ThingWrinkles; Another American; Asking and TellingGross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar WildeBreaking The Code; Lot’s Daughters. North Coast Repertory Theatre: The Cocktail Hour; Fallen Angels; Broken Glass; Glorious; Don’t Dress For Dinner; Relatively SpeakingImportance of Being EarnestTravestiesAn American DaughterThe Sum of UsBlithe SpiritCorpseRough CrossingChekov in Yalta. San Diego Repertory Theatre: Bad Dates. Cygnet Theatre: Atwater, Fixin’ to Die. Renaissance Theatre: Caretaker (San Diego Critics Circle Award). Compass Theatre: Three Days of Rain. Fritz Theatre: Vigil. Gaslamp Quarter Theatre: Marvin’s Room.  Founding Artistic Director of Chequamegon Children’s Theatre in Wisconsin, now in our 29th season.

Kym Pappas (Director, Well) is the Co-Artistic Director of InnerMission Productions. Kym developed the Charles K. Nichols Internship Program at OnStage Playhouse and has served as its director since 2006. Directing credits include the San Diego Premieres of The Kid Thing by Sarah Gubbins (MOXIE Theatre), Seminar by Theresa Rebeck, Fat Pig by Neil Labute, Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead  by Burt V. Royal, and the World Premiere of Disappearing Act by Delia Knight. She directed and developed an original theatre piece, ONE with the L.E.T Youth Crew and the San Diego Domestic Violence Council. She is a member of the Pasadena Playhouse Directors Lab West and she studied at the American Conservatory Theatre.

Sean Fanning (Scenic Design) is a Southern California-based scenic designer with a career spanning over fifty productions on local stages. Previously for Diversionary: The Mystery of Love and SexThe Boy Who Danced on Air, Now or Later, Birds of a Feather, Pippin, and Harmony, Kansas.  Elsewhere: Full Gallop, the Globe for All tours of Measure for Measure & All’s Well That Ends Well, A Doll’s House, Kingdom, and Plaid Tidings (The Old Globe); My Manana Comes (Marin Theatre Company); Manifest DestinitisThe Oldest Boy, Everybody’s Talkin’, Honky, In the Heights, and Walter Cronkite is Dead (San Diego Repertory Theatre); Equivocation (Lamb’s Players Theatre) Seven Guitars, King Hedley II, GypsyHay Fever, The Vortex, Dogfight, The Whale, Sons of the Prophet, Pageant (Cygnet Theatre Company); Brownsville Song (b-side for tray), A Raisin in the Sun (Moxie Theatre); and The Imrov at Harrah’s and Menopause the Musical (Harrah’s Las Vegas). Sean holds an M.F.A. in Scenic Design from San Diego State University. See more of his work at www.seanfanningdesigns.com.

Kate Bishop (Costume Designer) Kate is thrilled to be back at Diversionary for another great adventure. Her previous shows at this theatre were Amazons and Their MenBaby With The Bathwater and Boys & Girls. Other recent San Diego productions include Moxie Theatre’s Eternally Bad and New Village Arts’  Lord of the FliesWait Until Dark and Plaid Tidings. Prior to that, Kate lived in LA, where she was resident costume designer for Invertigo Dance Theatre (favorites include After It Happened, Give Me Wings) and Independent Shakespeare Company in Griffith Park (favorites include She Stoops To Conquer, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Much Ado About Nothing). She also designed some movies nobody saw, TV shows on channels you didn’t know you had, and a terrible music video for a pop icon she wishes wasn’t still available on YouTube. For more of her work, find her on Facebook: Kate Bishop Costume Design.

Curtis Mueller (Lighting Designer) returns to Diversionary having designed Lizard BoyManhandledNow or LaterA Civil War Christmas, Amazons and Their MenMan Clan, and A New Brain. Select local credits include: Gutenberg! The Musical (Backyard Renaissance); End of The RainbowQuality of LifeThe 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, I Hate Hamlet, All My Sons, Macbeth (Intrepid Theatre Company); Big RiverThe 1940s Radio HourSeascape (NewVillage Arts); Chess in concert, Next to Normal, Spring Awakening (Cabaret at the Merc Summer Series). Curtis has also worked extensively with Coronado School of The Arts, CYT San Diego, and CAST Productions. Curtis holds a BFA in Lighting Design from California Institute of The Arts.

Melanie Chen (Sound Designer) is thrilled be back at Diversionary! She is a San Diego based freelance sound designer who has designed over 70 productions in San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Recent regional credits include: An Iliad (New Village Arts); Marjorie Prime, Neil Simon’s Laughter on the 23rd FloorThe Cocktail Hour (North Coast Repertory Theatre); The Two Gentlemen of Verona (The Old Globe/ USD MFA Program); Native Son (UC San Diego MFA Program); Seven Guitars, King Hedley II (Cygnet Theatre). Melanie just returned from working on a large scale immersive installation version of Peter Pan with Broadway Asia in Beijing as the Sound Design Associate. Coming up, she will work with New Village Arts on their production of Awake and Sing and North Coast Repertory Theatre’s An Illusion. Melanie holds an M.F.A. in Sound Design for Theatre & Dance from UC San Diego. Visit www.melaniesound.com for more information.

Bonnie Durben (Property Master) Diversionary Theatre: The Mystery of Love and Sex,  The Boy Who Danced on Air, Now or Later, She-Rantulas, Baby With The Bathwater, A New Brain and Amazons and Their Men. Mira Costa Theatre; These Shining Lights,  Romeo and Juliet, Seven, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Urinetown. Moonlight Theatre Productions; Sister Act, Peter Pan, Titanic, Addams Family, Music Man, Shrek, All Shook Up and Big Fish. Intrepid Theatre: Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, Quality of Life , Hamlet, and I Hate Hamlet. Member of the Society of Property Artisans and Managers.

Monica Perfetto (Resident Stage Manager, Stage Manager for Well is grateful to call Diversionary home as both Production Coordinator and Resident Stage Manager. Monica has a BA in Theatre Arts and Performance Studies from the University of San Diego. At Diversionary: The Boy Who Danced on Air, Now or Later, In the Va Va Voom RoomA Civil War Christmas, Bright Half Life, and A New Brain. Elsewhere: RENT  (Southwestern College), Annie (California Youth Conservatory), Much Ado About Nothing, I Hate Hamlet, All My Sons, Macbeth, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream the Musical  (Intrepid). As Production Assistant/ Assistant Stage Manager: Ain’t Misbehavin’, The Fox on the Fairway, Side by Side, Chapter Two (North Coast Repertory Theatre), and The Two Gentleman of Verona (The Old Globe/USD MFA Program). 

James Ramirez (Stage Manager, 2.5 Minute Ride) is making his Diversionary Theatre debut with 2.5 Minute Ride. Elsewhere: My Mañana ComesOutside Mullingar, and Rapture, Blister, Burn (San Diego Repertory); Lost in the Pines (Magnetic North Theatre Co); Lettice and Lovage(Scripps Ranch Theatre); A Discourse of Wonders on the Invisible World (Moxie Theatre); Vinegar TomA Little Night Music (San Diego State University) and various concert series’ for Mainly Mozart.

Scott Amiotte (Master Carpenter)

lisa-kron-headshot-smABOUT LISA KRON

Lisa Kron has been writing and performing theater since coming to New York from Michigan in 1984. Her work has been widely produced in New York, regionally, and internationally. Her plays include the musical Fun Home, a musical written with composer Jeanine Tesori and based on the graphic novel by Alison Bechdel (Tony Award, Best Book, Music & Lyrics, Best Musical); The Ver**zon Play, which premiered 2012 Humana Festival; In The Wake which received Lortel and GLAAD Media Award nominations, was a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, named a “Best Play of 2010” by TimeOut and Backstage, and was included in the Best Plays Theater Yearbook 2010-2011; Well, which premiered at the Public Theater, was named a “Best Play of 2004” by the New York Times, the Associated Press, the Newark Star Ledger, Backstage, and the Advocate, included in the Best Plays Theater Yearbook of 2003-2004, and moved to Broadway where both she and Jayne Houdyshell received Tony nominations for their performances. 2.5 Minute Ride, which had its New York premiere at the Public Theater, received OBIE, L.A. Drama-Logue, New York Press, and GLAAD Media Awards, and continues to be performed by Lisa and others all over the world; 101 Humiliating Stories, which received a Drama Desk nomination for its PS122 premiere and was a part of Lincoln Center’s 1993 “Serious Fun!” performance series.

Lisa is a founding member of the legendary OBIE and Bessie Award-winning collaborative theater company The Five Lesbian Brothers whose plays, Oedipus at Palm Springs, Brave Smiles, Brides of the Moon and The Secretaries have all been produced by their theatrical home, New York Theater Workshop, and have been performed widely throughout the country both by the Brothers and by other companies. Their plays are published by T.C.G. in the anthology, “Five Lesbian Brothers/Four Plays” and also by Samuel French.

Lisa has received playwriting fellowships from the Lortel and Guggenheim Foundations, Sundance Theater Lab, the Lark Play Development Center, and the MacDowell Colony, the Cal Arts/Alpert Award, a Helen Merrill Award, and grants from the Creative Capital Foundation and New York Foundation for the Arts. She was a resident playwright at the American Voices New Play Initiative at Arena Stage.

As an actor, Lisa’s professional career as began in 1983 when Michael Kahn chose her as member of the ANTA Company, which toured three plays in rep for a season. Since then she has acted in her own plays and the plays of the Five Lesbian Brothers, and has also been seen in such productions as the Foundry’s GOOD PERSON OF SZECHWAN at LaMama, THE NORMAL HEART at the Public Theater, SPAIN at M.C.C., and THE MOST FABULOUS STORY EVER TOLD, at NYTW.

Lisa has hosted and emceed benefits, galas, variety nights, rent parties, talent shows, pig roasts, bingo nights, awards ceremonies, bar mitzvahs, brisses and birthday parties too numerous to mention.

Lisa is a member of Actors Equity and serves on the Council of the Dramatists Guild of America.

 

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