“Every decade is about a community that is being built as a result of being torn apart.“—Taylor Mac.
(Lenox, MA) – Shakespeare & Company presents Obie Award-winning playwright Taylor Mac’s dark comedy HIR, directed by Alice Reagan, and featuring long-time Company veterans John Hadden and Elizabeth Aspenlieder. Performances run in the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre September 13 – October 7.
The play begins with Isaac, who has returned from the war in Afghanistan, only to discover a household in revolt. The insurgent: his mom. Liberated from an oppressive marriage with a now ailing husband, and with Isaac’s newly out transgender sibling as her ally, she’s on a crusade to dismantle the patriarchy. But in Taylor Mac’s sly, subversive comedy, we learn that annihilating the past doesn’t always free you from it.
“What I love about this play is that the characters live on the edge where cruelty and love converge,” said Director Alice Reagan. “MacArthur Fellow Taylor Mac has written an outrageous, hilarious play in the rich tradition of black comedies centered on the dysfunctional American nuclear family. HIR examines the conflict between our need for safety and our desire to risk it all to find a better, truer way to live—no matter the collateral damage to those we love. I think audiences will find themselves laughing out of both shock and recognition. We humans can be brutally honest, even hurtful towards each other, in our quest to live fully. Change hurts. However, change is what is necessary if we want to live wide-awake lives. Wrapped inside this verging-on-absurd domestic tragicomedy is a rousing call to life.”
Alice Reagan returns to Shakespeare & Company after 2016’s acclaimed production ofOr, to direct this black comedy starring Elizabeth Aspenlieder (Paige) and John Hadden (Arnold) alongside Jack Doyle (Max) and Adam Huff (Isaac). The production features an all-female design team including Carolyn Mraz (Set Design), Deb Sullivan (Lighting Design), Charlotte Palmer-Lane (Costume Design), Amy Altadonna (Sound Design), and Fran Rubenstein (Stage Manager).
Tickets for HIR are available online at shakespeare.org, or by calling Shakespeare & Company’s box office at (413) 637-3353. The Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre is air-conditioned and wheelchair accessible. Shakespeare & Company is located at 70 Kemble St. in Lenox, Massachusetts. HIR is generously sponsored by Claudia Perles.
AT A GLANCE
Playwright: Taylor Mac
Director: Alice Reagan
Assistant Director: Mary-Corinne Miller
Set Designer: Carolyn Mraz
Lighting Designer: Deb Sullivan
Costume Designer: Charlotte Palmer-Lane
Sound Designer: Amy Altadonna
Vocal Coach: Ariel Bock
Violence Coordinator: Allyn Burrows
Stage Manager: Fran Rubenstein
Elizabeth Aspenlieder (Paige)
Jack Doyle (Max)
John Hadden (Arnold)
Adam Huff (Isaac)
Thursday, September 13 – 7:30 PM (preview)
Friday, September 14 – 7:30 PM (preview)
Saturday, September 15 – 7:30 PM (opening)
Sunday, September 16 – 3:00 PM
Friday, September 21 – 7:30 PM
Saturday, September 22 – 3:00 PM & 7:30 PM
Sunday, September 23 – 3:00 PM
Friday, September 28 – 7:30 PM
Saturday, September 29 – 3:00 PM & 7:30 PM
Sunday, September 30 – 3:00 PM
Friday, October 5 – 7:30 PM
Saturday, October 6 – 3:00 PM & 7:30 PM
Sunday, October 7 – 3:00 PM (closing)
About Alice Reagan
(Director, HIR) S&Co: Or,. Other directing credits: Grounded by George Brant (Dobama Theatre); Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue by Quiara Alegría Hudes (Profile Theatre); Jackie by Elfriede Jelinek (Boom Arts); Enter THE NIGHT by Maria Irene Fornes (Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble); The Miser by Molière (Brave New World); Nomads by Julia Jarcho (Incubator Arts Project); I Came to Look for You on Tuesday by Chiori Miyagawa (La Mama). Mabou Mines/SUITE Resident Artist Program; Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab; Women’s Project Directors Lab; Lincoln Center Directors Lab; Princess Grace Award and Princess Grace Special Project Grant; Drama League Directing Fellow. Alice is Associate Professor of Professional Practice in Directing at Bard College. MFA: Columbia. alicereagan.com.
About Taylor Mac
(Playwright, HIR) Taylor Mac (who uses “judy,” lowercase sic, not as a name but as a gender pronoun) is a playwright, actor, singer-songwriter, performance artist, director and producer. Judy’s work has been performed at the Lincoln Center, The Public Theatre and Playwrights Horizons, Royce Hall, Minneapolis’s Guthrie Theater, Steppenwolf Theatre, the Sydney Opera House, American Repertory Theatre, SodraTheatern, the Spoleto Festival, Curran Theater and MOMA, and literally hundreds of other theaters, museums, music halls, opera houses, cabarets, and festivals around the globe. Judy is the author of seventeen full-length plays and performance pieces including HIR, The Lily’s Revenge, The Walk Across America for Mother Earth, The Young Ladies Of, Red Tide Blooming, and The Be(a)st of Taylor Mac. Mac has won the Doris Duke Performance Artist Award, a Guggenheim Award, the Herb Alpert Award in Theater, the Peter Zeisler Memorial Award, the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award and an Obie.
About Shakespeare & Company
Located in the beautiful Berkshires of Western Massachusetts, Shakespeare & Company is one of the leading Shakespeare festivals of the world. Founded in 1978, the organization attracts over 40,000 patrons annually. The Company is also home to an internationally renowned Center for Actor Training and award-winning Education Program. More information is available at www.shakespeare.org.