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Ithaca, NY — Kitchen Theatre Company’s 2015-2016 Season begins next month!

This season marks a major milestone for the theater: the 25th Anniversary Season and the sixth in its beautifully renovated, LEED-certified home at 417 W. State/MLK, Jr. St. in downtown Ithaca, NY.

Led by Artistic Director Rachel Lampert and Managing Director Stephen Nunley, Kitchen Theatre Company is Central New York’s Off-Broadway theater, a small professional Equity company producing new and modern plays.

“Important conversations happen in the Kitchen” is the motto that has defined the work of this company for over two decades and motivated the play choices in this silver anniversary season. Subscriptions for the seven-play season are on sale now.

What’s playing?

Show 1: Opening the 2015-2016 Season is a play The New York Times called “irresistible, delicious and wickedly funny” – Buyer & Cellar by Jonathan Tolins. Kitchen Theatre Company favorite Karl Gregory plays Alex, an out-of-work LA-based actor, who finally gets a job – as a one-man shopping mall manager in Barbra Streisand’s basement!

And when Barbra descends the spiral stairs, watch out! A hilarious one-man show about celebrity and staying true to yourself. The play is directed by Ithaca College Department of Theatre Arts faculty member Wendy Dann. Previews are September 6, 8, and 9, opening night is September 10, and the play runs through September 27. Ages 14+

Show 2: Next in the season is The Mountaintop by Katori Hall, which looks at one of modern history’s most revered figures, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Winner of the Olivier Award for Best New Play in 2009, The Mountaintop is powerful, surreal imagining of Dr. King’s last night on Earth. A conversation between King and a mysterious hotel maid who brings him a cup of coffee prompts him to confront his life, his past, his legacy, and our national story. Directed by Nicole A. Watson. Previews are October 11, 13, and 14, opening night is October 15, and the play runs through October 25. Ages 14+

Show 3: The playful and moving I and You by Lauren Gunderson is the third play of the season. Chronic illness has kept Caroline out of school for months. Then Anthony shows up at her door with waffle fries, a beat-up copy of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, and a shared English project deadline. This seemingly ordinary school project unlocks a much deeper mystery that has brought them together. Directed by Emily Jackson. Previews areNovember 8, 10, and 11, opening night is November 12, and the play runs through November 22. Ages 14+

Show 4: Next, we celebrate our 25th season with a home grown work: an encore production of The Soup Comes Last, Rachel Lampert’s real-life memoir of her 1997 trip to stage the first-ever production of West Side Story in the People’s Republic of China. The Soup Comes Last features miscommunications, awkward translations and cultural missteps that beg the question, “Will the show go on?” It is a one-woman play with a dozen characters, about clashing and collaborating, written and performed by KTC Artistic Director, Rachel Lampert and directed by Emily Jackson. Previews are November 29,December 1, and 2, opening night is December 3, and the play runs through December 13. Ages 14+

Show 5: Winner of five 2012 Tony Awards, Peter and the Starcatcher by Rick Elice is a swashbuckling musical adventure! This grown-up’s prequel to Peter Pan is an innovativetheatrical extravaganza featuring twelve actors playing over one hundred unforgettable characters. Previews are January 31, February 2, and 3, opening night is February 4,and the play runs through February 21. Ages 10+

Show 6: We welcome the spring with the funny and poignant Dancing Lessons by Mark St. Germain. After an unfortunate encounter with a taxi, Senga’s Broadway dance career is sidelined. Her downstairs neighbor, Ever, a brilliant scientist, is in need of dancing lessons. Sound like a good match? There’s just one problem – he has Asperger’s and a no-touch policy. Dancing Lessons is a wonderfully complicated story about understanding ourselves and others. Previews are March 20, 22, and 23, opening night is March 24,and the play runs through April 3. Ages 14+.

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Show 7: Closing out the celebratory 2015-16 Anniversary Season is Heidi Schreck’s Grand Concourse. Shelley is a nun who runs a Bronx soup kitchen, but lately her heart is not in her job… or her faith. When a college dropout with rainbow hair arrives to volunteer, her mix of generosity and self-involvement brings Shelley’s midlife crisis to a boil. Grand Concourse is an astute examination of forgiveness, faith, and what makes a “good person.” Previews are May 1, 3, and 4, opening night is May 5, and the play runs throughMay 22. Ages 14+

More info

Performances this season are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 PM, Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 PM, and Sundays at 4:00 PM. New this season is a 7:00 PM Tuesday preview performance in the first week of each run. Our 2:00 PM Thursday matinee falls on the second week of every run. Pay What You Can tickets will be available at the Tuesday performances.

Subscriptions and subscriptions are available over the phone at (607) 272-0570, in person at the Kitchen offices (409 W. State St.) Monday-Friday, 10:00 AM-6:00 PM and at the theater (417 W. State St.) Saturday-Sunday, 12:00-4:00 PM.

This season’s directors are NYC-based directors Margarett Perry, Nicole A. Watson, and Sara Lampert Hoover; KTC Artistic Director, Rachel Lampert; and KTC Artistic Associate Emily Jackson. The company of actors includes professionals from NYC and Ithaca who are in residence for 5 to 7 weeks over the course of the season.

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