Toronto Premiere of Studio 180 Theatre’s Production of INDECENT
For Immediate Release (First released August 10. Updated October 19)
Contact: John Karastamatis, Sue Toth, Randy Alldread – Mirvish Productions
Toronto Premiere of Studio 180 Theatre’s Production of INDECENT
October 14 to November 6, CAA Theatre
Tickets on sale Saturday August 13
David Mirvish is pleased to present the long-anticipated Toronto premiere of Studio 180 Theatre’s production of INDECENT directed by Joel Greenberg — the same company and director who have created such successful past Off-Mirvish productions as Clybourne Park, Oslo and King Charles III — will feature a cast of 10 of the country’s finest artists who will portray more than 40 characters as they bring to dramatic life this story about the transformative power of theatre.
The Tony Award®-winning play INDECENT is the first show in the 2022-23 Off-Mirvish season and begins performances October 14 to November 6, 2022 at the CAA Theatre. Tickets go on sale rday August 13 on mirvish.com
The cast of INDECENT includes Matt Baram, Jonathan Gould, Jessica Greenberg, Tracy Michailidis, Dov Mickelson, Sarah Orenstein, Nicholas Rice, Emilyn Stam, John David Williams and Laetitia Francoz-Lévesque.
INDECENT by Paula Vogel, is directed by Joel Greenberg; with set design by Ken Mackenzie; costume design by Michelle Tracey; lighting by Kimberly Purtell; projection by Cameron Davis; sound design by Thomas Ryder Payne; properties by Chynah Philadelphia, and Score and Original Music by Lisa Gutkin and Aaron Halva. The Stage Manager is Laura Baxter.
ABOUT THE PLAY
In 1923, after highly celebrated and groundbreaking productions in Europe, the Broadway debut of Sholem Asch’s drama God of Vengeance set the stage for an explosive moment in theatrical history when it finally opened on Broadway. What European audiences had found brilliant, dazzling and moving, Broadway audiences responded with shock and disgust. The entire cast was arrested and charged with obscenity. Suddenly this evocative work of Jewish culture that explores religious hypocrisy, among other social issues, was a cause célèbre. The evocative work of Jewish culture was praised and criticized for taboo themes of censorship, immigration, and anti-Semitism.
In 2015, inspired by these true events and the controversy of God of Vengeance on Broadway, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel debuted a play about this explosive moment in theatre history. Premiering at Yale Repertory Theatre, she called her play INDECENT. Combining music, song, dance and comedy, INDECENT takes us behind-the-scenes to tell the true story of this forgotten controversy and the courageous artists who risked their careers and lives to perform a work deemed “indecent.” The play explores the nature of theatre, anti-Semitism, censorship, politics, homophobia and true love.
INDECENT was immediately praised as gripping and wildly entertaining. The play opened in New York at the prestigious off-Broadway Vineyard Theatre and, in 2017, transferred to Broadway, where its reception was the opposite to the one that greeted God of Vengeance almost a century earlier, winning two Tony Awards®.
Filled with music and dance, INDECENT combines the high entertainment of theatre with the heartbreak of the loss of art and culture for an entire people. An ensemble of 10 Canadian actors and musicians portray more than 40 roles in this riveting and richly theatrical backstage drama. “Brimming with good faith” (The New York Times), this enchanting Tony Award®-winning play is a testament to the transformative power of theatre that is more timely than ever.
This production of INDECENT marks the 20th Anniversary season of Studio 180.
“Superbly realized…. Indecent, the powerful play by Paula Vogel, sheds an eye-opening light on a little-known time when theatrical history, Jewish culture, and the frank depiction of homosexuality intersected, with explosive results.” - The New York Times
“Gorgeous. Illuminating and heartbreaking. Rich in sympathy, Indecent has the scope of an epic but the intimacy of a chamber piece…. It celebrates and illustrates the power of theater.” - Time Out New York
“Gravely beautiful, quietly moving, altogether exquisite.” - The Boston Globe
“Indecent reminds us of the power of art to tell us truths long before we are able to recognize them as such.” - Los Angeles Times
“Revelatory…. As intimate and immediate as a whispered secret. Vogel’s play thrums with music, desire, fear, and it’s shrewd about the ways in which America isn’t free, and about how art does and doesn’t transcend the perilous winds of history.” - New Yorker
“So much rich emotion about history and the theater. A gripping and entertaining show with laughter and tears!” - Newsday
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT, Paula Vogel
For Studio 180: debut. Paula Vogel has written How I Learned To Drive (Pulitzer Prize, New York Drama Critics Award, Obie Award, Lucille Lortel, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and many more.) Other plays include A Civil War Christmas, The Long Christmas Ride Home, The Mineola Twins, Hot ‘N’ Throbbin, The Baltimore Waltz, Desdemona, And The Baby Make Seven, and The Oldest Profession. Her plays have been produced by Second Stage, New York Theatre Workshop, the Vineyard Theatre, Roundabout, and Circle Repertory Company. Her plays have been produced regionally all over the United States, at the Center Stage, Intiman, Trinity Repertory, Woolly Mammoth, Huntington Theatre, Magic Theatre, The Goodman Theatre, American Repertory Theatre, Dallas Theatre, Berkeley Repertory, and Alley Theatres to name a few. Harrogate Theatre and the Donmar Theatre have produced her work in England. Her plays have been produced in Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand as well as translated and produced in Italy, Germany, Taiwan, South Africa, Australia, Romania, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Poland Slovenia, Canada, Portugal, France, Greece, Japanese, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Brazil and other countries.
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR, Joel Greenberg
For Studio 180: (selected credits) Oslo, King Charles III, My Name is Asher Lev, You Will Remember Me, Clybourne Park, The Normal Heart, Our Class, Parade, The Overwhelming, Blackbird, Stuff Happens, The Laramie Project. A co-founder of Studio 180, Joel is a Chalmers and Dora Award–winning playwright and director who has directed productions across Canada. Elsewhere: Ain’t Misbehavin', What the Butler Saw, Taking Sides, Vanities, Bells Are Ringing, Second City (Toronto and Chicago), Dames at Sea (too many times), Tonight at 8:00…8:30 in Newfoundland (all three editions), The Foreigner, Alice, Drink the Mercury and The Nuclear Power Play. Joel taught at Humber College Theatre School from 1984 to 1989 and the Drama Department at the University of Waterloo from 1991 to 2014, also serving as the Chair of each department.
ABOUT THE CAST
Matt Baram, Lemml
Matt Baram is a proud alumnus of the legendary Second City Comedy Theatre in Toronto where he wrote and performed in six revues. He is a co-creator of the improvisational hits: The Script Tease Project, Impromptu Splendour and The Carnegie Hall Show. He is a graduate of The University of Alberta Conservatory Acting School and can be seen on stages and screens both large and small. You can catch Matt in the up-coming Netflix limited series, Painkiller starring Matthew Broderick.
Jonathan Gould, Avram
On Broadway Jonathan appeared as Ned in School of Rock (Winter Garden Theatre/NY). Selected Theatre includes several seasons with the Stratford Festival, Shaw Festival, Soulpepper Theatre, Citadel Theatre, Belfry Theatre, Grand Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Banff Centre and 78th Street Theatre Lab in NYC. Jonathan is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and The Birmingham Conservatory at the Stratford Festival. Selected Film/Television: Suits, Scaredy Squirrel, Star Falls, BeyWheelz, Buck Calder Experience, Kim's Convenience. Upcoming: Zone (Apple Studios), Essex County (CBC).
Jessica Greenberg, Chana
For Studio 180: Jessica has appeared in King Charles III, NSFW, Cock, Our Class, Parade, Blackbird, Offensive Shadows and The Passion of the Chris. She has been a Studio 180 Core Member since 2004, heading the successful IN CLASS education program for high school students for over ten years, and is currently the Director of Youth and Community Engagement. Other stage credits include Crow’s Theatre, Project: Humanity, Canadian Stage, YPT, Harold Green Jewish Theatre, Passe Muraille, Citadel, Theatre New Brunswick, Musical Stage Company, Thousand Islands Playhouse, Theatre in Port, Green Thumb, MTYP, Willow Cabin Theatre, TheatreWorks/USA, and the Manhattan Ionesco Festival. She has appeared on TV in The Handmaid’s Tale, Murdoch Mysteries and Being Erica and voiced multiple characters for the animated series and feature film Fish ‘n Chips. Jessica holds an Honours BA in political science and women’s studies from McGill University and completed her classical acting training at Circle in the Square Theatre School in New York and as an apprentice at the Actors Theatre of Louisville in Kentucky.
Tracy Michailidis, Halina
For Studio 180: Parade. For Mirvish: Piaf/Dietrich. For Musical Stage Company: Life After (Dora Award), Parade (also with Studio 180), The Light in the Piazza. Previous: Tracy played Aurora in Eclipse Theatre's inaugural production of Kiss of the Spider Woman at the Don Jail, for which she received a Dora nomination, and toured Europe with Theaturtle's production of Charlotte: A Tri-Colored Play. She has spent seasons at the Shaw Festival, Stratford Festival and Charlottetown Festival and spends her time between New York City and Toronto making some art and enjoying the views. A proud graduate of Queen's University, Tracy is also a teaching artist who runs her own private studio and is on the faculty for both The Performing Arts Project and MTCA in New York City.
Dov Mickelson, Mendel
Dov Mickelson is thrilled to make his Studio 180/Mirvish debut with Indecent. He’s an actor, writer and teacher based in Toronto. He toured Canada and the UK with Catalyst Theatre’s award-winning productions of Pootsie Plunket, Blue Orphan, and Frankenstein. Dov has written and performed original works at Rhubarb, Hatch, The Red Cabaret and Lab Cab festivals. Selected Theatre: Indecent (Segal Centre); Munschtime (YPT); Hogtown (Hogtown Collective); Bingo (Factory Theatre); The Wizard of Oz (Globe); Amadeus (CanStage/Citadel); The Jones Boy (Surface/Underground); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanStage); The Trials of John Demjanjuk (Asylum); The Amorous Servant (Pleiades); Dying To Be Sick (Pleiades/NAC); Gladstone Variations (Resurgence); Like The First Time (One Little Goat); Winslows of Derryvore, and The Right Road to Pontypool (4th Line Theatre). Dov is in the award-winning feature film Lune by Aviva Armour-Ostroff/Arturo Perez and the short Found Objects (Old World films). He has appeared on TV in Baroness Von Sketch, Murdoch Mysteries (CBC); Wedding Season (Netflix); Finding Christmas (Hallmark); Fairyland (Nickelodeon) and The Associates (CTV).
Sarah Orenstein, Vera
For Studio 180: Oslo, My Name is Asher Lev, God of Carnage, The Normal Heart, Stuff Happens. Sarah Orenstein started her career at the age of 5. She studied at the prestigious Vancouver Playhouse Acting School. Appearing on stages from her native Halifax to the Queen Charlotte Islands, Sarah has won multiple awards in a career spanning 50 years. Her most recent of many Film and TV credits is the series Station Eleven. She Is committed to mentoring young actors and directors, and to new play development. She has recently begun to explore direction in her association with Studio 180. Some credits: Shaw Festival – thirteen seasons, including The Millionairess, Blithe Spirit and Heartbreak House. Tarragon Theatre: Patience, The Collected Works of Billy the Kid, Scorched (Canadian tour). Stratford Festival: five seasons, most recently seen in Birds of a Kind and Nathan the Wise.
Nicholas Rice, Otto
For Studio 180: debut. Nicholas is delighted to appear in Indecent. He comes straight to this production from runs of his solo-show, A Side of Rice, at Fringe festivals in Hamilton and Victoria. Other theatre credits include Bar Mitzvah Boy, Angels in America, and The Golden Land (Winnipeg Jewish Theatre); Mrs. Warren’s Profession and Pygmalion (Classic Theatre Festival); Oliver! (Capitol Theatre, Port Hope); Waiting for Godot (Centaur Theatre); Nature of the Beast (Safeword); The Diary of Anne Frank (Manitoba Theatre Centre and Segal Centre); The Odd Couple (Leah Posluns); Fiddler on the Roof (YES Theatre); and The Price (Persephone). His screen credits include Look Who’s Talking and The Grey Fox, as well as episodes of Suits, Coroner, and Locke and Key. A Winnipegger, Nicholas trained at UBC and settled in Toronto in 1981. He is a teacher, a writer, a proud dad, and a student at High Park Martial Arts. He dedicates his performance in Indecent to his cousin, Tom Churchill.
Emilyn Stam, Musician, Music Director
Emilyn Stam is an Ontario-based fiddler, pianist and accordionist who creates, performs, records and teaches in folk, trad, and neo-trad styles from Europe and Canada. Her unique style is largely influenced by her mentor, the late Oliver Schroer. She has toured throughout Canada and Europe with the Lemon Bucket Orkestra, Filippo Gambetta (accordionist from Italy), John David Williams, and more. She regularly crosses over into other art forms collaborating with improvising clowns, theatre groups, contemporary dancers and poets. In 2013 she co-founded Balfolk Toronto, a movement of social folk dancing in Toronto which hosts weekly dance evenings with live music jams and larger ‘bals’ featuring international performers throughout the year. In 2018 she started Canada’s first “Balfolk” Festival, The Big Branch, set in rural Ontario featuring performers from Europe. Her duo with John David Williams, an album of original and traditional music for dancing, titled “Honeywood”, was released in 2020.
John David Williams, Musician
John David Williams is a clarinettist based in Ontario. After studying classical music with the late world renowned clarinettist Avrahm Galper, and at the University of Toronto, John began his own exploration of improvisation, composition, traditional jazz, klezmer, and folk dance traditions of Western Europe. He has played mostly with Lemon Bucket Orkestra, Jaron Freeman-Fox and the Opposite of Everything, his duo with Emilyn Stam, and his own band, The Boxcar Boys. He has performed in China, Australia, throughout Europe, the USA and across Canada, and can be heard on many acclaimed and award-winning recordings including LBO’s Juno-nominated albums Lume, Lume and Moorka, The Opposites’ Canadian Folk Music Award-winning self-titled album, and three releases that predominately feature his own compositions by The Boxcar Boys.
Laetitia Francoz-Lévesque, Musician
Laetitia Francoz-Lévesque is a Montreal-based violinist who has been immersed in music since her childhood. Growing up in a family of musicians, she began her violin studies with her mother at the age of 6 and never stopped evolving in the artistic world. She has completed a classical formation in college, as well as a major in jazz violin. Her travels around Eastern Europe and Latin America have also enriched her musical tastes and brought her to play many different world music styles such as tango, klezmer, Algerian Chaabi, Balkan music and Quebec trad. It is Laetitia’s rich musical upbringing and diverse influences that make her a unique, sensitive, and versatile player that make her an asset to any musical ensemble. Laetitia is currently very active in the Montreal music scene, performing all over Quebec and Europe. She plays in, as well as arranges and composes, for such bands as Syroko, ZeRadcliffe Fanfare, Excavation et Poésie, LiKouri and more.
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