Michael John LaChiusa’s First Daughter Suite & More Tapped for Public Theater Season
View Comments The Public Theater has announced its 2015-16 off-Broadway season, which will include the world premiere of First Daughter Suite, a new musical by Michael John LaChiusa, featuring Rachel Bay Jones, Mary Testa and more. Also in the season lineup is Stew and Heidi Rodewald’s previously announced The Total Bent, Robert O’Hara’s Barbecue and Sarah Burgess’ Dry Powder.The season kicks off on September 4 with a musical adaptation of Homer’s The Odyssey written by Todd Almost. Lear deBessonet will direct the Public Works production, which will run through September 7 at the Delcorte Theater in Central Park.The world premiere of O’Hara’s Barbecue will run from September 22 through November 1. The play follows the O’Mallery family as they stage an intervention for their drug-addicted sister Barbara. The event takes a harsh turn as familial stereotypes and politics collide. Kent Gash will direct.After his 1993 musical First Lady Suite at the Public, LaChiusa will present his follow-up work First Daughter Suite, featuring a cast that includes Jones, Testa, Barbara Walsh, Theresa McCarthy, Isabel Santiago and Carly Tamer. Kirsten Sanderson will direct the tuner, which explores the complex relationships between First Ladies Particia Nixon, Roselyn Carter, Betty Ford, Nancy Reagan and Barbara Bush and their daughters. Performances will run from October 6 through November 15.The Gob Squad returns to the Public for Before Your Very Eyes from October 17 through November 29. The show has been created over the past two years by kids ages eight-14. The show puts audiences behind the safety of one-way mirrors as performers live out seven lives in fast forward: from teenage angst to elder years.Thomas Kail will direct the world premiere of Burgess’ Dry Powder, which will run from March 1, 2016 through April 10. The comedic drama follows Rick, the owner of a private equity firm who finds himself in a PR nightmare after he throws an extravagant engagement party immediately after his company faces extreme layoffs. His two managing directors have various schemes to either save the day or drive the company to bankruptcy.The New York premiere of Head of Passes will run from March 15, 2016 through April 24. Tina Landau directs the Tarell Alvin McCraney drama in a co-production with Berkeley Repertory Theatre. In the contemporary parable inspired by the Book of Job, Head of Passes follows a family reunion at the mouth of the Mississippi River that turns into a test of faith and love.The Total Bent, featuring a book by Stew and a score by Stew and Heidi Rodewald, will begin performances on May 10, 2016. The show was originally slated for the 2014-15 season, but was replaced with Buzzer. Directed by Joanna Settle, the tuner explores the passions that divide a gospel star and his songwriting son as they make their music and make their choice between salvation and selling out. Performances will run through June 19, 2016.The season will also include two Mobile Shakespeare Unit tours: All’s Well That Ends Well (November 2 through November 22) and Romeo and Juliet (May 10, 2016 through May 29). Additionally, the twelfth annual Under the Radar Festival will kick off in January 2016, and will include Halory Goerger and Antoine Defoort’s Germinal, which features four performers on an empty stage as they attempt to construct the world (including physics, philosophy, music and language) from scratch.