New York Times Critics' Pick, Timeout ny 5 Stars

Miles for Mary

Premiered at The Bushwick Starr | October - November 2016

It’s 1988, and the planning committee for Garrison High School’s ninth annual Miles For Mary Telethon is fired up and ready to go. Across subcommittee sessions in the Phys. Ed teachers' lounge, Drama Desk-nominated The Mad Ones assemble an analog elegy to the camcorder 1980s, Girls Track and Field, and the consecrated American High School.

“Miles for Mary,” which is set in an Ohio high school office where a group of teachers conduct a series of preparatory meetings for a charity television marathon, provides an ideal showcase for this company’s strengths. As directed by Lila Neugebauer, with a precision-tuned six-member cast, the production cannily uses interactive acting to plumb the dysfunction in group dynamics." 
- The New York Times | Ben Brantley | Critics' Pick
"...this meticulous creation from The Mad Ones theater troupe would send you bolting for the exit, screaming, if it weren’t so funny and unexpectedly touching." 
- The New York Times | Ben Brantley | Critics' Pick
"Your troubles lift from your shoulders while you're watching the Mad Ones show Miles for Mary, a bittersweet comedy about high-school committee work in 1989... Essentially, it's pure delight, an easy way to pay a few bucks for radiating pleasure." 
- TimeOut NY | Helen Shaw | 5 STARS
"...tilting almost imperceptibly from spoof to heartbreak, and then, in a climactic scene that commences with a failed tutorial on a new set of speakerphones, descending precipitously into a remarkable five-way argument that is so absurd and yet so plausible that it feels like an education in itself." 
- The New Yorker
"...As someone who grew up in Northeast Ohio in the 1980s, I totally appreciated returning to Northeast Ohio in the 1980s in the Mad Ones’ “Miles for Mary,” at the Bushwick Starr. Set in a high school teachers’ lounge, the production nailed the nostalgia-inducing props (a massive Apple desktop computer), costumes (acid-wash jeans) and music. “Don’t Dream It’s Over” never sounded so sweet."  
The New York TimesMemorable Theater of 2016: Twining Twins, Bathroom Sex and Cod Kisses, Erik Piepenburg

 

Created by The Mad Ones in collaboration with Amy Staats and Stacey Yen, Directed by Lila Neugebauer, Set Design by Amy Rubin, Costume Design by Asta Hostetter, Lighting Design by Mike Inwood, Sound Design by Stowe Nelson, Dramaturgy by Sarah Lunnie,

Featuring Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto, Amy Staats, Stephanie Wright Thompson and Stacey Yen. 

Miles for Mary was commissioned and developed through the support of The Bushwick Starr with additional developmental support from Ars Nova. Miles for Mary is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Subsidized studio space provided by the A.R.T./New York Creative Space Grant, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Additional support provided by the Studio42 Legacy Grant and The Nancy Quinn Fund, a program of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./New York).

 

New York Times Critics' Pick, Timeout ny 4 Stars

THE ESSENTIAL STRAIGHT & NARROW

Premiered at THE NEW OHIO THEATRE | May 2014

A lo-fi ode to the Kodachrome 1970s, rock and roll antics, and the mystical American Southwest: The Essential Straight & Narrow recalls a roadside layover in Pinos Altos, New Mexico, where passing the time becomes reliving the past. Between original country rock songs, bouts of $10,000 Pyramid, and late night craft time, The Mad Ones turn out an intimate anthem about regret and reinvention. 

*American Theatre Wing's Henry Hewes Design Award Nominations for Laura Jellinek, Asta Bene Hostetter, and Mike Innwood. New York Times Critic's Pick

“Ingenious and tricksy, its story lines tantalize and confound. But just when you’re ready to dismiss it as a postmodern goof, it shoots straight at your heart. With excellent aim.”
The New York Times | Alexis Soloski
"Say what you will about the Mad Ones, they don’t pander." 
The New York Times | Alexis Soloski
"If it’s a single as good as 'The Essential Straight & Narrow,' play it again.” 
The New York Times | Alexis Soloski
"No one does period like The Mad Ones...there’s a party straight out of Fellini, a Cassavetes hangdog vibe, a pair of jeans borrowed from Jane Fonda. The band jams briefly, and though you’ll keep reminding yourself that there never was any such group, you’ll miss it keenly. I still hope they get back together. Maybe they’ll tour?"
 - TimeOut NY | Helen Shaw | 4 Stars
"HEARTY PARTY: A chicken, a mermaid, a sad clown and a Navajo chief crowd a motel room in New Mexico, boozing and dancing and bobbing for apples. Riotous and melancholy, this Halloween bacchanal at the close of the Mad Ones’ The Essential Straight & Narrow lets the good times roll and then, as evening collapses into morning, the bad ones, too."
- The New York Times | A Bare Beginning, A Ghostly Ending: Stage Memories from 2014 | Alexis Soloski

Created by The Mad Ones in collaboration with the ensemble, Directed by Lila Neugebauer, Set Design by Laura Jellinek, Costume Design by Asta Hostetter, Lighting Design by Mike Inwood, Sound Design by Stowe Nelson, Dramaturgy by Sarah Lunnie

Featuring Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto & Stephanie Thompson, with Clare Barron, Jonathan Bock, Blake DeLong, Maya Lawson, Matthew Summersgill, & Merlin Whitehawk

The Essential Straight & Narrow is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and the Puffin Foundation. The Essential Straight & Narrow was developed through the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Process Space Residency, a SPACE on Ryder residency, and the Archive Alliance.

Select Photo Credit Fitz Patton, Chance Magazine

 

New York Times Critics' Pick | Timeout ny 4 Stars | Drama desk nomination

Samuel & ALasdair:
A Personal History
of the Robot War

The Brick, Ars Nova, The New Ohio Theatre  | 2009-2012

 In an alternate global history, the cold war was decided not by detente, not by nuclear holocaust, but by massive robot invasion. Among the survivors, a team of Russian radio hosts, warmed to a lost culture of 1950s Americana, broadcast a story of brothers’ love drawn straight from the American heartland. “Samuel & Alasdair: A Personal History of the Robot War” combines 1950s radio drama, vintage country music, and Soviet science for a look back in time and forward to what’s next.

*Winner of  2010 New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Production of A Play, Outstanding Ensemble, & Outstanding Sound Design. Nominated for Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Sound Design, New York Magazine Top 10 of 2012, New York Times Critic’s Pick, The Independent Theater Bloggers Association 2012 recipient of the Fourth Annual Patrick Lee Theater Blogger Awards Outstanding Off-Off Broadway Play

“Written by Mr. Bovino and Mr. Curnutte, and fluidly directed by Lila Neugebauer, the show doesn’t burlesque its pop culture sources but honors them. When Ms. Wright Thompson’s Anastasia sings, the music has real power. ”
- The New York Times | Rachel Saltz | Critics' Pick
“This is one of the most smoothly functional theatrical metaphors you’ll have seen in a while, a great, small play about decline and denial and the subtler, unspoken bonds of devotion. Without a crumb of optimism, Samuel & Alasdair is still a spot of warmth in a cold world.”
- New York Magazine | Scott Brown
“The show may feel as fragile as a vacuum tube, but it’s actually unbreakably deft- and delightful to its minutest detail… rest assured, you are safe in the hands of some confident new theatrical talents.”
- Time Out NY | Helen Shaw | 4 Stars
“…pleasantly eccentric and unexpectedly poignant … the acting is dynamic”
- Village Voice | Alexis Soloski

Created by The Mad Ones, Directed by Lila Neugebauer, Set Design by Laura Jellinek, Costume Design by Jessica Pabst, Lighting Design by Mike Inwood, Sound Design by Stowe Nelson, Music Direction by Michael Dalto

Featuring Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto and Stephanie Wright Thompson

TIMEOUT NY 4 STARS

THE Tremendous tremendous

PREMIERED AT THE BRICK | APRIL 2011

Flushing, New York, 1939. It’s been a tremendous summer here at the New York World’s Fair, filled with technological marvels, real life mermaids and those can’t miss show stoppers, the Tremendous Traveling Abbotts. Their arousing soft shoe, swinging musical skill and impeccable timing have left jaws here on the fairgrounds agape in awe. Bravo!

Join The Mad Ones as they pull back the curtain on a tremendous moment in American history and reveal the closing night party of those irascible Abbotts, a tremendous traveling family with an unsettling secret.

*Nominated for NYIT Award for Outstanding Ensemble, Top 10 Show of 2011 according to L Magazine

“The Mad Ones project is nostalgia—exploring it and creating it—and in an elegant marriage of form and content, The Tremendous Tremendous exists most sweetly in memory… carefully articulated in the service of a heartbreaking cumulative affect.” 
-TimeOut NY, Helen Shaw, (4 Stars)
"The Mad Ones’ hilarious vaudevillian romp lived up to the promise of its title. Five tremendous actors portray five tremendous actors acting, watching each other act and brilliantly babbling backstage on the night of their last performance in the 1939 World’s Fair. One room, one act, one hour—a real-time tour-de-force."
-The L Magazine, 10 Best Things on Stage 2011
“Is it innovative and original or is it uninspired wanking? In theater and far beyond, ‘experimental’ is a dirty word; works billed as such are generally hit-or-miss. The Mad Ones’ production… is unwaveringly on target.”
-The L Magazine, Eugene Reznik
The Tremendous Tremendous is a rich and rewarding work of theatre that transports its audience not only to the time and place where it unfolds but to other locations private and personal to each of us; it kind of magically casts a spell to bring you to a place in your own past where you felt something akin to what you’re witnessing on stage. The Mad Ones...are definitely a company to watch.”
-NYTHEATRE.COM, Martin Denton

Created by The Mad Ones, Directed by Jeff Withers, Set Design by The Mad Ones, Costume Design by Sydney Gallas, Lighting Design by Mike Inwood, Sound Design by Stowe Nelson, Music Direction by Michael Dalto, Makeup by Michael Anthony

Featuring Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto, Stephanie Wright Thompson and Henry Vick

Photo Credits for Video: William Hereford
Select Photos: William Hereford