ASK SOMEONE ELSE, GOD
A surreal comedy about the prophet Jonah
Written by Kenneth Nowell
Directed by Shari Johnson
September 9 - October 4, 2009
Who’s that lady? Wait, that’s no lady.
That’s the Super-Essential Godhead, source of all being!
And she wants Jonah to go to Ninevah.
But how does he feel about it?
Looking Glass Theatre proudly presents the world
premiere of ASK SOMEONE ELSE, GOD, a surreal comedy
about the prophet Jonah written by Kenneth Nowell and
directed by Shari Johnson, as part of its exciting Fall 2009
lineup. Ask Someone Else, God opens at The Looking Glass
Theatre, 422 West 57th Street, on Wednesday, September 9.
Performances are scheduled every Wednesday through
Saturday at 8 p.m. and every Sunday at 5 p.m. through October 4.
Running time is 80 minutes.
About The Show…
Jonah is simultaneously God’s prophet and a burned-out businessman working through personal issues. Just as he’s finally escaped the clutches of dehumanizing urban life and the suffocation of a middle class lifestyle, God commands him to return to Nineveh with a message of repentance. Jonah journeys first away and then towards his destiny through a kaleidoscopic dreamscape that evokes the worlds of folktales, Kafka and the Marx Brothers. And then, there’s that whale part.
Director Shari Johnson uses the rich musicality of composer/playwright Kenneth Nowell’s text to create a layered production. Along with the songs inherent in the script, (sailors sing sea chanteys, prophets chant prophesy), the ensemble cast creates a live soundscape using both voices and props. Imagine humming and hand drums, the snick of a spray can or jars of water to create the sounds of the sea. The stage will be transformed with bizarre and unusual props, everything from skeletons to children’s flotation toys. Ask Someone Else, Godcelebrates and explores the absurdities of life along with its difficult choices. Expect deep laughs and deeper thoughts. New York Innovative Theatre Award nominated actor Will Ellis returns to The Looking Glass Theatre in the role of Jonah. Ellis, a California native, received praise and accolades for his performances in Nowell’s The Fall and Nowell’s adaptation of Frank Wedekind’s Spring’s Awakening as well as Kate Marks' Odyssey at The Looking Glass Theatre. Joining Ellis in the stellar ensemble cast are Adriana Disman, Ricky Dunlop, Kristen Niche Jeter, Courtney Kochuba, Janelle Mims, Mary Regan and Hanlon Smith-Dorsey, who earned numerous Looking Glass Forum Award honors this June for his work as Lysidamus in Casina. Creative team includes: Dana Dobreva (Assistant Director/Stage Manager), Maureen Stanley (Assistant Director/Stage Manager), Julia Noulin-Mérat (Scenic Designer), David Monroy (Lighting Designer), Jessica Lustig (Costume Designer) and Jennifer Woo (Assistant Scenic Designer).
About the Playwright Kenneth Nowell…
Kenneth Nowell is a playwright from Mississippi living in Brooklyn. Most recently, his original play Helix 999 and his adaptation of Wedekind’s Spring’s Awakening were produced at The Looking Glass Theatre. The New York Times said about his original work, The Fall: “Mr. Nowell’s technique is poetic, clipped, precise ... a kind of Cubist sculpturing of consciousness and event that replicates the pain and absurdity of family trauma. Think of Donald Margulies’ world skewed by a noir Thorton Wilder collaborating with a Gertrude Stein.” Read the entire rave review here.
About the Director Shari Johnson…
Ms. Johnson has directed eight shows at The Looking Glass Theatre, most recently Everyman in May 2008. Other directing work at The Looking Glass Theatre includes: Not Enough Princesses,"M," Muncie and Mayhem, How to Ruin Romeo and Juliet and Creatures of the Cabaret. She has directed in various theatres throughout Manhattan, including Bowery Poetry Club, the Lamb’s Theatre, Theater 1050, Theatre Studio Inc., and The Outrageous Fortune Company. Ms. Johnson also directed the premiere of Addicted to Christmas at the 2007 Midtown International Theatre Festival. She holds a BA in English and Theatre from Hope College in Michigan and is a member of the improv group Amnesia Wars, which performs experimental long form.
About Looking Glass Theatre…
Looking Glass Theatre’s mission is to theatrically and truthfully reflect a female vision on the stage. We fulfill this by presenting female directors' visions of classics and by staging new plays either written or directed by women. In June 2006, Looking Glass Theatre and Artistic Director Justine Lambert received The Lucille Lortel Award from The League of Professional Theatre Women. The New York Times called our Fall 2008 production of Adventures of the Puppet Princess “charming” and “especially amusing to children under 10...a substantial introduction to the culture of Bali.”
ASK SOMEONE ELSE, GOD
September 9 - October 4, 2009
SCHEDULE: Wednesday-Saturday @ 8 p.m., Sunday @ 5 p.m.
ADDRESS: 422 West 57th Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues
TDF Vouchers Accepted!
This show is now closed.
ADRIANA DISMAN (Fisher 3/Exterminator/Voice 1/Candleholder) is a graduate of The Etobicoke School of the Arts (Theatre Major) and The Neighborhood Playhouse. She has performed both classic and contemporary roles in venerated theaters and festivals across Toronto including the Toronto Fringe Festival, the Paprika Festival, Theatre Passe Muraille, and the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre. She was most recently seen in Lament and Fragmentation at The Flea Theater and Clownsville, The Musical at Manhattan Children's Theatre. She now lives in NYC and is truly happy.
RICKY DUNLOP (Waiter/Pedestrian/Voice 5) is thrilled to be back on stage! He studied Theatre at the University of Florida before arriving in New York last September. His New York theatre credits include: Robbie in Shopping & F***ing (Rude Monkey Theatre Group), Van in Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead (Red Door Theatre Company), Captain in Wild Thing (The New Acting Company), Stevie Moore in a reading of Escape From Happiness (Algonquin Productions) and he is an original collaborator on the brand new In Fields Where They Lay (The Dreamscape Theatre) opening sometime this Winter. Ricky would like to thank everyone at Looking Glass Theatre for this opportunity to be absurd and much love to the cast/crew for being so wonderful! Because of this production, I now have a greater appreciation for sharks. Become my FAN on Facebook!!!
WILL ELLIS (Jonah)-NYC Stage: Twelfth Night (Gloria Maddox Theatre), Odyssey, Spring’s Awakening, The Fall (Looking Glass Theatre - NYIT Award nomination), The Other End, Macbeth, Rock of Ages. Regional: Hamlet, A Vampire Tale, Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (Portfolio Awards), The Foreigner, Laughter on the 23rd Floor. TV/Film: “Law and Order,” “As the World Turns,” A Dangerous Place. Thank you to Shari and Ken and Justine; you fulfilled my “certain expectations.” To the cast and the crew: Repent! To my family and friends: you’re amazing. And to Erin - my true Love and my Like: is there ever a time to stop reaching? SDG.
KRISTEN NICHÉ JETER (Fisher 2/Woman 2/Police/Voice 4) is making her New York City theater debut after recently graduating from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. She would like to say that she is very proud to be a part of the ASEG cast and very thankful for the opportunity to make the transition from a student to a professional. Blessings to my supportive family in Smyrna, GA.
COURTNEY KOCHUBA (Wife/Fisher 1), delighted to be making her Looking Glass Theatre debut, is tickled pink that she gets to play onstage with this incredible cast every night! Courtney recently appeared in Bartholomew Fair, NJ (Midtown International Theatre Festival, The Theater Company) and Comic Potential (Hudson Theatre Ensemble). An alum of Carnegie Mellon University (B.A. Creative Writing), she has also performed with Pittsburgh Musical Theater, Rauh Conservatory Theater Company and Scotch’n’Soda Theatre. To find out which eyebrow Courtney can raise (and other legitimate info), check out www.courtk.com. As always, she gives endless love/thanks to her Lorelai, Choochie, mwj and the best friends for which a gal could ask.
JANELLE MIMS (Elegant Woman) can’t swim...so she's glad she’s playing God and not Jonah...because that would be tragic. While trying to stay afloat, she can often be found giving the greatest karaoke performance of her life (well, that week) somewhere in the city. Some of her recent credits include Memory River (Emerging Artists Theatre), The Bully (Vital Theater) and The Eight: Reindeer Monologue (Reality Aside Theatre). She is grateful for this learning experience and hopes that you enjoy the show!
MARY REGAN (Captain/Lawyer/Voice 2/Woman 1) is happy to be back working at the Looking Glass Theatre, where she appeared in Mariginal Women as Elizbaeth Bathory several years ago. Other NYC credits include Tumor Brainiowicz and The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great, both at La Mama E.T.C., The Murders at Argos with Cobblestone Productions and roughly a billion improv comedy shows at UCB, Magnet Theatre and The PIT with such groups as My Kickass Van, The Ghosty Teen Mysteries and Yum Yum Bangkok. She’d like to dedicate her performance to her Dad.
HANLON SMITH-DORSEY (Bound Man/Groucho/Voice 3/Voyeur) is an actor and dancer who most recently appeared in the Built on Stilts Dance Festival on Martha's Vineyard. He was last seen at Looking Glass in Casina, which was part of the Spring 2009 Writer/Director Forum. He holds a BA in Theater from Bard College and an MFA in Acting from DePaul University.
KENNETH NOWELL (Playwright) is a playwright from Mississippi living in Brooklyn. Most recently, his original play Helix 999 and his adaptation of Wedekind’s Spring’s Awakening were produced at The Looking Glass Theatre. The New York Times said about his original work, The Fall: “Mr. Nowell’s technique is poetic, clipped, precise ... a kind of Cubist sculpturing of consciousness and event that replicates the pain and absurdity of family trauma. Think of Donald Margulies’ world skewed by a noir Thorton Wilder collaborating with a Gertrude Stein.”
SHARI JOHNSON (Director) has directed eight shows at The Looking Glass Theatre, most recently Everyman in May 2008. Other directing work at The Looking Glass Theatre includes: Not Enough Princesses, "M," Muncie and Mayhem, How to Ruin Romeo and Juliet and Creatures of the Cabaret. Beyond the various off-off theatres she has worked at, last year she highlighted her career with a trip to Uganda to teach drama to elementary age students. She holds a BA in English and Theatre from Hope College in Michigan, and is a member of the improv group Amnesia Wars, which performs experimental long form.
DANA DOBREVA (Assistant Director/Stage Manager) recently returned to the U.S. after spending three years in Bulgaria where she taught theatre to middle and elementary school children and directed plays. Some of her credits include Polaroid Stories, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and two original musicals: Soul Notes and Puppets Shadows. She has also traveled to Namibia to teach theater and to Brazil and Argentina to learn tango, samba, and maracatu. She is very happy to be working on her first show at The Looking Glass Theatre.
MAUREEN STANLEY (Assistant Director/Stage Manager) is proud to be living the dream. This marks Maureen's fourth show in NYC since moving here in February. Most recently she was the production assistant on The Ordinary Theatre's production of The Joys of Fantasy. Previous NYC credits: Brecht’s Galileo (AD/SM) with Milk Can Theatre Company, and Red Fly/Blue Bottle (lighting intern) at HERE. In Fall of 2007, she was the production management intern at New York Theatre Workshop. She would like to thank her family and friends for eternal support.
JULIA NOULIN-MÉRAT (Scenic Design) hails from Montreal, Canada and is now New York based. Recent theatre work: November (Hangar Theatre), Moonchildren (Attic Theatre), Haunted House (Audax Theatre- Irish Art Centre), The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Gerald Lynch Theatre- Lincoln Centre), Dark Play or Stories for Boys, Memory House and The Firebugs (TheareZone). Recent opera credits:Carmen (BOC), The Barber of Seville (Opera Institute), The Elixir of Love (Sugarcreek Festival), Little Red Riding Hood and The Telephone (Opera Boston). TV: “Guiding Light” (CBS). BFA: Design for the Theatre from Concordia University, Montreal. MSc Arts Administration and MFA in Scenic Design from Boston University. www.noulinmerat.com
DAVID MONROY (Light Design) is a member of NY Artists Unlimited with blossoming experience in theater and music. David came to New York to broaden his scope of experience by completing freelance audio projects, live performance sound and most currently lighting design. In his quest for enlightenment, David gave up a promising career as a ninja to become a sound and lighting designer.
JESSICA LUSTIG (Costume Design) enjoys playing with clothes, and has done so at several small theatres and a few larger ones. Some favorite design credits include Ruthless with the Richmond Triangle Players, Macbeth at The University of Washington, Glass Menagerie at The Ethnic and Cultural Theatre, Seattle, and several shows with Storm Theatre and Stone Soup Theatre Arts. She also finds teaching great fun, and does so at Montclair State University. Jessica spent eight months of 2007-2008 traveling the world on the Bonderman Travel Fellowship. She wrote about it here: www.trailingphinneasfogg.blogspot.com. Spain, Nepal, and India were particularly exciting…
JENNIFER WOO (Assistant Scenic Designer) is a New York based designer originally from Montreal, Quebec. This is her sixth production with Julia and her first with The Looking Glass Theatre. Recent credits include Haunted House, Moonchildren, the Montreal’s Urban Mythology and No Cycle. Jennifer is also a visual artist and holds a BFA in Design for the theatre from Concordia University, Montreal.
The Fishers prepare to throw Joanah overboard.
Jonah (Will Ellis) and a Fisher (Adriana Disman) anticipate a storm.
“a briskly paced romp through daydreams” –The New York Times
“charmingly original” – The Huffington Post
“delivers the goods, and much more!” -The Happiest Medium