Minneapolis, Minnesota’s Children’s Theatre Company comes Seedfolks, making its Off-Broadway Premiere at The New Victory Theater from May 4 – 11, 2018!
Based on the book by Newbery Medal-winning Paul Fleischman (Joyful Noise) and directed by Children’s Theatre Company Artistic Director Peter C. Brosius (TCG’s Alan Schneider Directors’ Award), the many diverse characters of an immigrant neighborhood are brilliantly brought to life by Ivey Award-winning actress Sonja Parks.
In Seedfolks, which was selected from 800 plays to represent the United States at the International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People’s World Congress in 2017, audiences will meet the fascinating residents of Gibb Street. From Ana, a crotchety old Romanian woman, to Gonzalo, a feisty Latino teenager, a fractured neighborhood comes together when a young girl plants some precious beans in a nearby vacant lot. Aided by video projection and a lively mix of recorded music, Ms. Parks, named a featured artist by TIME Magazine and one of “Seven Artists You Must See” by American Theatre, embodies a dozen distinct and diverse characters in this enthralling solo production.
“I was captured by the story’s beautiful message of hope that allows us to see the potential within ourselves,” says director Peter C. Brosius (L.A. Drama Critics Circle Award, Ivey Award for Best Director). “It’s a joy to return to The New Victory Theater, a venue that shares CTC’s belief that even our youngest neighbors can be a catalyst for social transformation in their communities.”
Seedfolks was developed by the Children’s Theatre Company (CTC) as part of the company’s longstanding dedication to developing new works for young audiences. As the only theater focused on young audiences to win the coveted Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, CTC creates theater experiences that educate, challenge and inspire more than 275,000 people annually. For its production of A Year with Frog and Toad (New Vic 2002), CTC is also the only theater in Minnesota to receive three Tony nominations. CTC is committed to producing world class productions at the highest level and to developing new works, more than 200 to date, dramatically changing the canon of work for young audiences.
Seedfolks features set and projection design by Jorge Cousineau, costume design by Sonya Berlovitz, lighting design by Paul Whitaker and music composed and recorded by Victor Zupanc.
The New Victory Theater presentation of Seedfolks is supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Learn more about Seedfolks at NewVictory.org.
Public Performance Schedule:
Friday, May 4 at 7pm
Saturday, May 5 at 11am* / 3pm
Sunday, May 6 at 11am / 3pm
Friday, May 11 at 7pm**
*audio-described performance **sign-interpreted performance
Seedfolks has a running time of 60 minutes with no intermission, and is recommended for ages 8 and up.
To purchase tickets in person, the New Victory box office is located at 209 West 42nd Street (between 7th / 8th Avenues). Box office hours are Sunday & Monday from 11am-5pm and Tuesday through Saturday from 12pm-7pm.
More about Sonja Parks
An accomplished actor, writer and director, Ms. Parks has worked with many notable venues including The Public Theater, The Royal Shakespeare Company, The Kennedy Center, Playwrights Horizons, The Boston Center for the Arts, the Guthrie Theater and Penumbra Theatre. She trained at University of Texas Austin, The Dance Theatre of Harlem and The National Black Theatre with its founder, the late Dr. Barbara Ann Teer. An original member of Doris Duke Fellow Sharon Bridgforth’s celebrated root wy’mn theatre company, she originated two one-woman shows, garnering an Osborn Award nomination by the American Theatre Critics Association.
She is an NEA Fellow, a McKnight Artist Fellow, a two-time Minnesota State Arts Board Fellow, a two-time Minneapolis Ivey Award winner (Acting 2009 and Directing 2010), a TCG/Fox Distinguished Achievement Resident Acting Fellow and a McCarter Theatre Center-Princeton/Sallie B. Goodman Fellow. She has been a featured artist in TIME Magazine, named “One to Watch” and one of “Seven Artists You Must See” by American Theatre Magazine. She taught acting and theater for six years as a member of the Theatre Arts faculty at The University of Minnesota Twin Cities and has been a guest teaching artist at DePaul University (Chicago), Hampshire College (Amherst), Cornish College of the Arts, Seattle and The University of Cape Town, South Africa.
More about author Paul Fleishman
Mr. Fleischmann’s novels, plays, picture books and nonfiction are known for innovation and multiple viewpoints. Before the thirteen monologues in Seedfolks came Bull Run with its account of the first Civil War battle told through sixteen characters’ eyes. His verbal chamber music includes Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices (winner of the Newbery Medal), I Am Phoenix and the four-voice poems in Big Talk. Bridging the page and stage are Mind’s Eye, Seek and Breakout (a finalist for the National Book Award). The presence of the past and importance of community, art and imagination are frequent themes in his books. In 2012, he was named the United States’ nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award for the body of his work. He lives in Santa Cruz, California.
About The New Victory Theater
The New Victory Theater brings kids to the arts and the arts to kids. Created in 1995 on iconic 42nd Street, this nonprofit theater has become a standard-bearer of quality performing arts for young audiences in the United States. Reflecting and serving the diverse city it calls home, The New Victory is committed to arts access for all students, teachers, kids, families and communities of New York to experience and engage with the exemplary international programming of theater, dance, circus, puppetry and more on its stages. A leader in arts education, youth employment and audience engagement, The New Victory Theater has been honored by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities with the 2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, by Americans for the Arts with a National Arts Education Award, and by the Drama Desk for “providing enchanting, sophisticated children’s theater that appeals to the child in all of us, and for nurturing a love of theater in young people.”
About The New 42nd Street
Founded in 1990, The New 42nd Street is an independent nonprofit organization charged with the continuous cultural revival of 42nd Street between 7th and 8th Avenues, building on the foundation of seven historic theaters to make extraordinary performing arts and cultural engagement part of everyone’s life. The New 42nd Street fulfills this purpose by ensuring the ongoing vibrancy of 42nd Street’s historic theaters; supporting performing artists in the creation of their work at the New 42nd Street Studios and The Duke on 42nd Street; creating arts access and education at The New Victory Theater, New York’s premier theater for kids and families; and through the New 42nd Street Youth Corps, its model youth development initiative, which pairs life skills workshops and mentorship with paid employment in the arts for NYC youth. Inspired by the city it serves, The New 42nd Street is committed to the transformational power of the arts.
Disclosure: No monetary compensation was provided for this post. All opinions are my own.