Monday, May 4, 2009

Press release - The Unseen


Contact: Mark St. Amant
213.309.2482 or


Playwright and creator of TV’s Dirty Sexy Money
Set to Direct the Road Theatre’s Mounting of

4 MAY 09: Co-Artistic Directors Taylor Gilbert and Sam Anderson of The Road Theatre Company have announced the next presentation from the ever-ambitious company, where the long-extended west coast premiere of Keith Huff’s The Bird and Mr. Banks plays on to appreciative crowds and critical acclaim through May 16.

Opening at the Road on Friday, June 19 is Emmy and Drama Desk-nominated writer Craig Wright’s THE UNSEEN, which debuted at the Actors’ Theatre of Louisville’s Humana Festival 2007 and concluded a much-heralded off-Broadway run at the Cherry Lane in March. THE UNSEEN expands the Road’s association with Wright, as the playwright will make his directorial debut at the Road, continuing the company’s artistic collaboration with one of the American theatre’s most talented writers. The multi-award-winning company’s 2008 west coast premiere of Wright’s Lady received four Ovation Awards and five LA Weekly Award nominations, garnering two LaWee wins, including Best Supporting Actor for Matt Kirkwood, who will also be featured in THE UNSEEN.

Last season’s subsequent New York debut of Lady was recently nominated for a Drama Desk Award as Outstanding New Play and received a nomination for Chicago’s Joseph Jefferson Award. Wright’s other works for the stage include The Pavilion, also a Drama Desk nominee in 2006; Main Street; Orange Flower Water; Recent Tragic Events; Molly’s Delicious; Melissa Arctic, which won Washington, DC’s Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play; Grace, a nominee for the Hayes Award and, for L.A.’s Furious Theatre, winner of the LA Drama Critics Award for Best Play and a TicketHolder Award for Wright as Best Playwright of 2006. Wright is the recipient of fellowships from the McKnight Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and holds a M.Div. degree from United Theological Seminary. He has written for numerous television shows, including his Emmy-nominated work as Executive Story Editor for Six Feet Under; Supervising Producer for Lost; Co-Executive Producer for Brothers and Sisters; and he was the creator and Executive Producer of the ABC series Dirty Sexy Money.

THE UNSEEN is a Kafka-esque, darkly humorous examination of faith in an uncertain world, a curiously fascinating psychological thriller about two prisoners (Matt Kirkwood and Darin Singleton) incarcerated by a totalitarian regime. Mercilessly tortured for unknown crimes and living without hope of escape or release, they desperately try to crack the code of their cryptic imprisonment. Only familiar to each other by voice as they cannot see one another, the men try to keep mentally and emotionally stable through their cell walls by sharing stories of their interrogations and torture, putting the pieces together about their captors, and attempting to devise a plan of escape.

The puzzle is further complicated with the introduction of a new prisoner placed between them, who only poses more questions than answers, and a childish yet sadistic guard (Douglas Dickerman) who seems to regret his job as resident torturer as much as he relishes talking about the details of it. As noted of the Cherry Lane production in TimeOut New York Magazine, “[THE UNSEEN] demonstrates what the Greeks always knew: If the writing is good enough, violence needn’t be seen to be believed.”

The Road Theatre Company has enjoyed an amazing 17-year history, honored with 10 Critic's Choice selections from the LA Times, 5 Pick of the Week selections from L.A. Weekly, 12 Critic’s Picks from Back Stage, 61 Valley Theatre League Artistic Director Achievement (ADA) Awards, 8 LA Drama Critics Circle Awards, 4 LA Weekly Awards, 2 Back Stage Garland Awards and 32 Garland Critic’s Citations, 15 Ovation Awards, 4 TicketHolder Awards and 27 runners-up mentions from Entertainment Today, and 5 Robby Awards. The company was honored with the 1998 LA Drama Critics Circle Margaret Hartford Award for Sustained Excellence in Theatre and the 2003 Back Stage West Landmark Award for Excellence in Theatre. The Lankershim Arts Center is a facility of the Cultural Affairs Department of Los Angeles.

THE UNSEEN opens Friday, June 19, playing Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm through Saturday, Aug. 22 at The Road Theatre, located two blocks south of Magnolia Bl. in the historic Lankershim Arts Center, 5108 Lankershim Bl. in the heart of North Hollywood’s NoHo Arts District. General admission is $30.00 ($10.00 for special preview performances on June 16, 17 and 18 at 8pm). Visa and MasterCard are welcomed and discounts are also available for senior, student, 3-A union members, and groups. For further information, call 866.811.4111 or log on at

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