INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Lawrence-based Acting Up Productions (AUP) will present “Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo” by the American playwright on October 25, 26 and November 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 2013 at Theatre on the Square (TOTS) mainstage.

More than fifty years after writing one of the most iconic plays in the history of American theatre, “The Zoo Story”, Edward Albee wrote a prequel to his classic entitled “Home Life”. Now the first act of “Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo”, “Home Life” contains the events in Peter’s life immediately preceding his encounter with Jerry on the park bench in “The Zoo Story” (now the second act of the complete work). We meet Peter’s wife Ann, and witness the conversation that compelled Peter to go for that fateful walk in the park and the interaction with Jerry that audiences will talk about long after viewing the play.


R. Brian Noffke (Greenfield), AUP Artistic Director discusses his thoughts on producing this particular show, “The role of Jerry in ‘The Zoo Story’ is a classic tour-de-force role which many character actors set their sights on.  At first, I wanted to produce the show and portray Jerry, but shortly decided that I wanted to remain a producer and offer the role to another actor that I respect and admire.  I chose frequent cast member Scott Russell (Indianapolis), an up-and-coming talent in Indianapolis (currently on stage in IRT’s “The Crucible”).  Having worked with Scot Greenwell (Indianapolis) as an actor and a director before, he was the first and only person I felt should direct the first production of our 3rd season.  Upon applying for the rights to perform the show, I found that Albee had written a prequel to “The Zoo Story”, focusing on Peter (the other character in “The Zoo Story” and his wife, Anne, before that fateful day in the park).  Scot completed casting the final two roles: Peter, now the central character of the play, and Anne.  Greenwell cast AUP newcomers, Joshua Ramsey (Irvington) in the role of Peter and Allison Reddick (Greenwood) in the role of Anne. Acting Up Productions is proud and honored to be presenting the Indianapolis premiere of ‘Edward Albee’s At Home At the Zoo’.”


Edward Albee, the American playwright probably best known for writing Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? has won multiple Pulitzer Prizes, Drama Desk Awards, and Tonys – including a Special Tony for Lifetime Achievement in 2005.  Yet he seems to achieve commercial and critical success specifically because they don’t motivate him. He’s creating something very purposeful with his art.  And while the theatre consuming public has been satisfied with “The Zoo Story” for more than 50 years, Albee wasn’t. What veins of storytelling did this highly-acclaimed playwright realize remained untapped in a work that was still being widely and popularly performed after five decades?

“The Zoo Story”, originally titled “Peter and Jerry”, is Albee’s first one-act play. It was written in 1958 and completed in just three weeks. The play explores themes of isolation, loneliness, miscommunication as anathematization, social disparity and dehumanization in a commercial world. Initially the play was rejected by New York producers. Albee first had it staged in Europe, premiering in West Berlin at the Schiller Theater Werkstatt on September 28, 1959. In its first American staging, it was performed by the Provincetown Playhouse in 1960 and paired with Samuel Beckett’s “Krapp’s Last Tape”. In this first American production, Peter and Jerry were played by William Daniels and George Maharis, respectively.  “At Home at the Zoo had its premiere Pittsburgh production and was the inaugural show for the Ghostlight Theatre Troupe in Gibsonia, PA in July 2010. It starred Rich Kenzie as Peter, Mary Romeo as Ann and Ned Johnstone as Jerry and was directed by Gabe Herlinger.


AUP’s production is directed by Greenwell, with Danna Sheridan (Indianapolis) as stage manager.  Noffke will design the set and lights, and Brian Hartz (Indianapolis) is the sound designer.


“Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo” will be presented Fridays, and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. October 25 – November 10 at Theatre on the Square, 627 Massachusetts Avenue, Indianapolis.  Tickets are $12 Reserved or $10 for Seniors/Students with ID and $15/$12 at the door.  Tickets may be purchased by calling the box office at 317-207-0171 or online at http://ActingUp-Productions.com.

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