Chester Theatre Company Presents Martin Zimmerman’s “On the Exhale”

Chester, MA – Chester Theatre Company (CTC) is proud to present Martín Zimmerman’s On the Exhale July 25-August 4. First preview is July 25 at 2:00pm, and the opening is July 25 at 8:00pm. Written in the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting, the play takes a unique look at the issues surrounding guns and gun violence in America. The production stars CTC Associate Artistic Director and Berkshire native Tara Franklin.
In the face of a senseless, unspeakable tragedy, a college professor copes with her loss in a most unexpected way. On the Exhale grapples with the uniquely American epidemic of mass shootings, and invites contemplation from all sides of the gun debate.
“It’s such a divided country, to work on a play that speaks to multiple viewpoints feels important right now,” said director Colette Robert. “Whatever your gun control position is, you can experience this woman’s journey, and then hopefully leave with your eyes and heart opened to a new perspective.”
“This play is exactly the kind of work that Chester Theatre Company is here to create and offer, and all of us here at the company have embraced it with our whole hearts,” said Artistic Director Daniel Elihu Kramer. “You may look at the subject matter of On the Exhale and think to yourself, “I don’t know if I want to see that.” Please, think again. This is a story we felt compelled to tell. I believe you will be stirred by this play, and you will be glad you came.”
Tickets are available by calling the box office at (413) 354-7771 or at chestertheatre.orgA limited number of discounted tickets* are available for opening night only (July 25 at 8pm) by using the code EXHALE on the phone or online.
The artistic team of On the Exhale includes:
Colette Robert (Director) is a Los Angeles native currently based in New York. She returns to CTC after having directed Mary’s Wedding last summer and The Mountaintop in 2016. Other recent directing credits include: Behind the Sheet (Ensemble Studio Theatre, New York Times Critic’s Pick), Outside of Eden (The New Ohio), Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again (Barnard College), and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (NYU Grad Acting). As a playwright, her play The Harriet Holland Social Club Presents the 84th Annual Star-Burst Cotillion in the Grand Ballroom of the Renaissance Hotel recently received a grant from New York City’s Women’s Film, TV, and Theatre Fund for a production in 2020 (co-produced by New Georges and The Movement Theatre Company). Colette is a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre, a New Georges affiliated artist, and an adjunct lecturer at Hunter College. She was previously an Audrey Resident at New Georges, a Van Lier Directing Fellow at The Public, and The Drama League’s 2018 Beatrice Terry Director in Residence.
Tara Franklin (Woman) returns to the Chester Theatre Company stage, where previous credits include Bar Mitzvah Boy and Sister Play. Off Broadway: Sleep No More (Punchdrunk Theatre Company); Regional: Naked, At Home At The Zoo (Zoo Story), The Homecoming, Mary & Edith, The Lion in Winter, The Puppetmaster of Lodz, Birthday Boy, The Guardsman, Ghosts, A Man For All Seasons, Educating Rita, Amadeus, Equus, The Misanthrope, Peter Pan, Dimetos and A Dream Play (Berkshire Theatre Group); Burning Desire (Seven Angels Theatre); Henry VLove’s Labours Lost, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Nebraska Shakespeare Festival); Translations, The Trojan Women, Red Noses and Misalliance (Connecticut Repertory Theatre); The Manuscript Found In Saragossa (Lookingglass Theatre Company); and Gravid Water (Improv Olympic.) Film: Labor Day. Tara holds a BFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, an MFA from the University of Connecticut, and currently serves as the Associate Artistic Director and Director of Education here at CTC.
Martín Zimmerman (Playwright) is a multi-ethnic, bilingual playwright and screenwriter whose plays include Seven Spots On The Sun, On The Exhale, White Tie Ball, The Making Of A Modern Folk Hero, The Solid Sand Below,and Let Me Count The Ways, and have been produced or developed at The Kennedy Center, Goodman Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, Alley Theatre, Roundabout Underground, LCT3, New York Theatre Workshop, Victory Gardens Theater, The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Playwrights Conference, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Marin Theatre Company, The Playwrights’ Center, Alliance Theatre, A.C.T. (Seattle), PlayPenn, Icicle Creek Theatre Festival, American Theater Company, The Theatre @ Boston Court, Chicago Dramatists, Primary Stages, Teatro Vista, Ojai Playwrights Conference, Playwrights Foundation, Cara Mía Theatre Co, Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, The City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs, Theatre Row, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Borderlands Theater, Source Festival, The Gift, Collaboraction, Red Tape, The University of Texas at Austin, and Duke University with upcoming projects at Roundabout Underground, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, La Jolla Playhouse, and Milwaukee Repertory Theater. A recipient of the Terrence McNally New Play Award, Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award Citation, Humanitas Prize New Voices Award, Sky Cooper New American Play Prize, McKnight Advancement Grant, Jerome Fellowship, Carl Djerassi Playwriting Fellowship, and the National New Play Network’s Smith Prize, Martín was a Staff Writer on Netflix’s Narcos, is a Story Editor on the upcoming Netflix Series Ozark, has been the Alliance for Latino Theater Artists (ALTA) Artist of the Month, was a member of the 2011-2012 Playwrights’ Unit at Goodman Theatre, is a Playwright in Residence at Teatro Vista, a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists, and has been a finalist for the Kendeda Competition and Heideman Award. MFA in Playwriting: The University of Texas at Austin. BA in Theater Studies, BS in Economics: Duke University.
The rest of the artistic team includes Lara Dubin (Lighting Designer), Travis George (Scenic Designer), James McNamara (Sound Designer), Charles Schoonmaker (Costume Designer), and Keri Schultz (Stage Manager).
Individual tickets are $42.50. Chester and Middlefield residents, members of the military and their families, and those holding EBT/SNAP cards may purchase $10 tickets at the door or by calling the box office. Student Rush $10 tickets are available day of show in person or on the phone. Tickets may be purchased online at, or by phone at 413.354.7771. Special rates for groups of 10 or more are available.
About Chester Theatre Company
Chester Theatre Company, a professional theatre company located between the Berkshires and the Pioneer Valley and convenient to both, is known for presenting high-quality productions with top-notch actors, directors, and designers from across the country since 1990. Founded by former Artistic Director of Dublin’s Abbey Theatre Vincent Dowling, CTC is now in its 30th season, and produces four thought-provoking plays each summer in the intimate setting of the Town Hall Theatre at 15 Middlefield Road in Chester, MA.
For further information, please call CTC at 413.354.7770, or visit

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