“ S L A V E P L A Y ”
THE EXPLOSIVE NEW BROADWAY PLAY ANNOUNCES FULL CAST
ATO BLANKSON-WOOD, JAMES CUSATI-MOYER, SULLIVAN JONES, JOAQUINA KALUKANGO, CHALIA LA TOUR, IRENE SOFIA LUCIO,
ANNIE MCNAMARA, AND PAUL ALEXANDER NOLAN
New York, NY (August 13, 2019) – Producers Greg Nobile and Jana Shea of Seaview Productions, Troy Carter, Level Forward, and Nine Stories, founded by Jake Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker, announced full casting today for the upcoming Broadway premiere of Slave Play, the acclaimed new work by Jeremy O. Harris, directed by Robert O’Hara.
The cast features Ato Blankson-Wood, James Cusati-Moyer, Sullivan Jones, Chalia La Tour, Irene Sofia Lucio, Annie McNamara, and Paul Alexander Nolan, who are bringing their acclaimed Off-Broadway performances to the Golden Theatre (252 West 45th Street). They are joined by Joaquina Kalukango who will create the role of Kaneisha for the Broadway production. The cast is being understudied by Eboni Flowers, Thomas Keegan, Jakeem Dante Powell, and Elizabeth Stahlmann.
Slave Play is playing a strictly limited 17-week engagement at the Golden Theatre with preview performances beginning Tuesday, September 10, ahead of an official opening night of Sunday, October 6.
When it premiered last fall, Slave Play immediately became the most talked about play of the year, garnered intense critical acclaim, stunned audiences with its unflinching examination of race and sex, and hailed Harris as “one of the most promising playwrights of his generation” (Chloe Schama, Vogue).
With the Broadway premiere of this “explosive, raw, and very funny piece of theater about race, sex, and power” (Tim Teeman, The Daily Beast), Harris becomes the sixth black writer to have a new play on Broadway in the last decade.
Prepare for “the single most daring thing I’ve seen in theater in a long time” (Wesley Morris, The New York Times).
The Old South lives on at the MacGregor Plantation — in the breeze, in the cotton fields...and in the crack of the whip. It’s an antebellum fever-dream, where fear and desire entwine in the looming shadow of the Master’s House. Jim trembles as Kaneisha handles melons in the cottage, Alana perspires in time with the plucking of Phillip’s fiddle in the boudoir, while Dustin cowers at the heel of Gary’s big, black boot in the barn. Nothing is as it seems, and yet everything is as it seems.
The creative team for the production includes Tony Award® winner Clint Ramos (scenic design), four-time Drama Desk Award nominee Dede Ayite (costume design), Drama Desk Award nominee Jiyoun Chang (lighting design), three-time Drama Desk Award nominee Lindsay Jones (sound design and original music), Amauta
Marston-Firmino (dramaturg), Byron Easley (movement), Claire Warden (intimacy and fight director), Doug Nevin (production counsel), and Taylor Williams (casting director). Mark Shacket serves as Executive Producer.
Slave Play is the recipient of the Rosa Parks Playwriting Award, the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award, The Lotos Foundation Prize in the Arts and Sciences, and the 2018 Paula Vogel Award. The play was nominated for the Outer Critics Circle’s John Gassner Playwrighting Award and the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Play.
JEREMY O. HARRIS (Playwright) is a writer and performer living in New York City. His full-length plays include: Slave Play, which will open on Broadway this Fall at the Golden Theater (New York Theatre Workshop, New York Times Critics Pick, winner of the 2018 Kennedy Center Rosa Parks Playwriting Award, the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award, and The Lotos Foundation Prize in the Arts and Sciences), Daddy (Vineyard Theatre/The New Group), Xander Xyst, Dragon: 1, and WATER SPORTS; or insignificant white boys (published by 53rd State Press). His work has been presented or developed by Pieterspace, JACK, Ars Nova, The New Group, New York Theater Workshop, Performance Space New York, and Playwrights Horizons. Harris co-wrote A24’s upcoming film Zola with director Janicza Bravo, is developing a pilot at HBO, and worked on their hit new series “Euphoria.” He is the 11th recipient of the Vineyard Theatre’s Paula Vogel Playwrighting Award, a 2016 MacDowell Colony Fellow, an Orchard Project Greenhouse artist, a resident playwright with Colt Coeur, and is under commission from Lincoln Center Theater and Playwrights Horizons. Harris is a graduate of the Yale MFA Playwrighting Program.
ROBERT O’HARA (Director) has received the NAACP Best Play and Best Director Award, the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play, two Obie Awards, and the Herb Alpert Award. He directed the world premieres of Jeremy O. Harris’ Slave Play, Nikkole Salter and Dania Guiria’s In the Continuum, Tarell Alvin McCraney’s The Brother/ Sister Plays (Part 2), Colman Domingo’s Wild with Happy, Kirsten Childs’ Bella: An American Tall Tale, as well as his own plays, Mankind, Bootycandy, and Insurrection: Holding History. His plays Zombie: The American and Barbecue world premiered at Woolly Mammoth Theater and The Public Theater, respectively. His recent directing projects include, Lorraine Hansberry’s Raisin in the Sun at Williamstown Theater Festival, Aziza Barnes’ BLKS at MCC, Inda Craig-Galvan’s Black Superhero Magic Mama at the Geffen Playhouse, the Universes’ Uni/Son, inspired by the poetry of August Wilson at Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Shakespeare’s Macbeth at Denver Center for the Performing Arts.
ATO BLANKSON-WOOD (Gary). Broadway: Hair and Lysistrata Jones. Off- Broadway: The Rolling Stone at Lincoln Center Theater, Slave Play at NYTW (Lortel Award nomination), The Total Bent at The Public (Drama League and Lortel Award nominations), The Public Works’ Twelfth Night and As You Like It, Transfers at MCC, Antigone in Ferguson at the Harlem Stage, the Foundry Theater’s O. Earth, and Iphigenia in Aulis at CSC. Film/TV: What is Life Worth?, BlacKkKlansman, The Kindergarten Teacher, Detroit, It’s Kind of a Funny Story, “When They See Us” (Netflix), “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (Amazon), “She’s Gotta Have It” (Netflix), and “The Good Fight” (CBS). Member of The Actors Center and Graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and The Yale School of Drama.
JAMES CUSATI-MOYER (Dustin). Broadway: Six Degrees of Separation (directed by Trip Cullman). Off-Broadway: Slave Play (New York Theatre Workshop, directed by Robert O'Hara), Nijinsky in World Premiere of Fire and Air by Terrence McNally (Classic Stage Company, directed by John Doyle); The Devil in The Soldier's Tale featuring Michael Cerveris (Carnegie Hall, directed by Liz Diamond). Regional: Kiss at Yale Repertory Theatre (Connecticut Critics Circle Nominee, Best Featured Actor), Westport Country Playhouse, Williamstown Theatre Festival. Film: False Positive (A24) Television: “Prodigal Son,” “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt," “The Path,” “Red Oaks,” “Blue Bloods,” and “Time After Time.” Training: MFA, Yale School of Drama.
SULLIVAN JONES (Phillip) Jones’ stage credits include appearances with New York Theater Workshop, Epic Theater Ensemble, Williamstown Theater Festival, The Denver Center, Berkeley Repertory Theater, Baltimore Center Stage, The Long Wharf Theater, and TheaterWorks Silicon Valley, among others. On screen, Jones was a series-regular in Hulu’s limited series “The Looming Tower,” and has made appearances on “Blue Bloods,” “Parks and Recreation,” “The Blacklist,” “The Good Fight,” “House of Cards,” and “NCIS: New Orleans.” Jones can soon be seen in Hulu’s original series “Wu-Tang: An American Saga,” and A24’s upcoming horror movie False Positive, written by and starring Illana Glazer. Jones studied Theater at Brown University and the UCLA School of Theater. He is a recipient of the Princess Grace Award for Theater.
JOAQUINA KALUKANGO (Kaneisha) was last seen on Broadway in the Tony®, Emmy®, and Grammy® Award-winning revival of The Color Purple as Nettie. Her other Broadway credits include Holler If You Hear Me and Godspell. Off-Broadway she was seen in the Red Letter Plays: F-ing A (Signature), Our Lady Of Kibeho (Signature), Antony and Cleopatra (The Public Theater and Royal Shakespeare Company), Emotional Creature (Signature and Berkeley Rep), Hurt Village (Signature, Theatre World Award, Drama Desk Award nomination) and Rent (NYTW). In spring 2020, she will also be seen in the musical adaptation of The Visitor, opposite David Hyde Pierce and directed by Daniel Sullivan at The Public Theater. In television she can currently be seen in “When They See Us” directed by Ava Duvernay on Netflix and “Instinct” on CBS All Access.
CHALIA LA TOUR (Teá) is an alumna of the Yale School of Drama's MFA Acting program. Theater: Slave Play (New York Theatre Workshop); Cadillac Crew (Yale Repertory Theatre); The Review, or How to Eat Your Opposition (Women's Theatre Project). Television: “The Good Fight,” “The Code,” and “Elementary” on CBS. Film: The Future is Bright, Love Repeat, and Three Pregnant Men. The Future is Bright had the honor of screening at the inaugural Smithsonian African-American Film Festival. Voiceover: “Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire” (Pit Stop Productions). LaTour is also an alumna of the Actors Theatre of Louisville Professional Training Program and The British American Dramatic Academy. She is a proud member of Actors Equity Association. For more information on her work go to chalialatour.com
IRENE SOFIA LUCIO (Patricia). Broadway: Wit. Off-Broadway: Slave Play, Love and Information (NYTW), Orange Julius (Rattlestick), Undertaking (BAM), King Liz (Second Stage), We Play for the Gods (Women’s Project). Regional credits: Yale Rep, Studio Theater D.C., and Cal Shakes among others. Television: “The Americans,” “Bartlett,” “Madam Secretary,” “Gossip Girl,” and “Casi Casi." Lucio co- created the web series “Buts” (NBC Short Film Festival winner). A Princeton and YSD graduate, she is originally from Puerto Rico.
ANNIE MCNAMARA (Alana). Selected theater: Slave Play (New York Theatre Workshop); Iowa (Playwrights Horizons, Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical); We’re Gonna Be Okay (Humana Festival/Actors Theatre of Louisville); Map of Virtue (13P); That Pretty Pretty (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater); Rapture, Blister, Burn (Huntington Theatre Company). With Elevator Repair Service: Gatz (Daisy - 2019 & Catherine - Original Cast); Everyone’s Fine with Virginia Woolf, The Sound and the Fury. With Clubbed Thumb, where she is an affiliated artist: The World My Mama Raised, Tomb of King Tot, 41-derful, Lay Me Down, Justin Timberlake, and U.S. Drag. Film: Blue Jasmine. Television: “Orange is the New Black,” “The Knick,” and “Mozart in the Jungle.”
PAUL ALEXANDER NOLAN (Jim) is a renowned Canadian actor who recently starred in Jeremy O. Harris’ critically acclaimed Slave Play at New York Theater Workshop. Previously he was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Bright Star, and he starred last year in Escape to Margaritaville. Other Broadway: Doctor Zhivago (Outer Critics Circle nomination), Once, Chicago, and Jesus Christ Superstar. Television: “The Code,” “Madam Secretary,” and “Instinct” for CBS. He recently shot the independent film The Scottish Play. Additional credits include the Off-Broadway world premiere and cast album of Daddy Long Legs; and appeared at the Stratford Festival in The Who’s Tommy, West Side Story, and As You Like It.
EBONI FLOWERS (Understudy for Kaneisha/Teá) is making her Broadway debut in Slave Play. Off-Broadway: Too Heavy For Your Pocket (Roundabout). Recent credits: A Raisin in the Sun (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Two Trains Running (Weston Playhouse), Father Comes Home from the Wars 1-3 (Yale Rep/A.C.T). Other theater credits: Dead Dog Park, Paradox of the Urban Cliche', Court Martial at Fort Devens, Too Heavy For Your Pocket (Alliance), Freddie Hendricks' Youth Ensemble of Atlanta. B.A: Clark Atlanta University. M.F.A: Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Big love and thanks to my Artist-Angels, wish you were here: Carol Mitchell-Leon, Jekonni Barber, Darius Truly, and Eloise Flowers. Luke 1:45
THOMAS KEEGAN (Understudy for Jim/Dustin) is honored to be making his Broadway debut with Slave Play. Regional theater: Junk, Watch on the Rhine (Arena Stage); Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare Theatre Company); The Glass Menagerie, Death of a Salesman, Jefferson's Garden (Ford's Theatre); Angels in America, Fool for Love (Roundhouse Theatre); world premieres of Zombie: The American, Women Laughing Alone with Salad, (Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company); Othello, The Taming of the Shrew (Folger Shakespeare Theatre). Television and film: “Turn: Washington's Spies,” “Veep,” “Madame Secretary,” “Elementary,” and Harriet (November 2019). Twitter/IG: @TheThomasKeegan.
JAKEEM DANTE POWELL (Understudy for Gary/Phillip) is a recent graduate from the Yale School of Drama. He most recently played Sebastian in Twelfth Night at the Yale Repertory Theatre and Gary in Slave Play at the Yale School of Drama.
Additional credits include Joseph Asagai in A Raisin in the Sun at the Dallas Theatre Center, Kasim in If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be A Muhfucka at the Yale School of Drama, and as Trigorin in The Seagull also at the Yale School of Drama.
ELIZABETH STAHLMANN (Understudy for Alana/Patricia) is a recent graduate of the Yale School of Drama and has most recently been seen in The Humans and The Cake at the Alley Theatre in Houston. Upon graduating from Yale, Stahlmann won a Connecticut Critic's Circle Award for her performance in the one woman show Grounded at Westport Country Playhouse. A proud alumna of The Acting Company, she toured nationally and Off-Broadway for three seasons performing in Romeo and Juliet, The Comedy of Errors, and As You Like It. Other regional credits include The Real Thing, A Christmas Carol (Guthrie Theater), Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival, and Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater. In television, Elizabeth was recently seen in an episode of “Law & Order: SVU.”