Sun, 26 April 2020
Content Warning: Violence
Anchors Bob Tunley and Fran Mercer are the iconic voices behind radio’s KLWP News Hour — but today, they’ve become the story. As bizarre and menacing soundbites interrupt their live broadcast, the studio crew begins to fear that they’re under attack.
Mark Brokaw (Broadway’s How I Learned to Drive, Cinderella) directs Obie winner Eisa Davis (Passing Strange, PoA’s Gun Show), Tony nominees Jeremy Shamos (Clybourne Park, PoA’s Hedgehog Years) and Steven Boyer (Hand to God, PoA’s Human Resources), and Tony winner Katie Finneran (Noises Off, PoA’s La Traviata) in FAKE NEWS by Pulitzer Prize winner Doug Wright (I Am My Own Wife, PoA’s Wildwood Park). After the episode, host Claudia Catania talks with the artists about writing plays specifically for audio and how these genius actors were able to play around with different accents and impressions on such short notice.
Doug Wright’s FAKE NEWS is Part One of a two-part thriller that continues next week with Rajiv Joseph’s CLEAN SLATE. Both pieces are world premieres through Playing on Air and Axe-Houghton Foundation’s annual Wordsmith Duo Project, which invites two extraordinary playwrights to explore a shared theme or story through original, partnered plays.
Playing on Air is a non-profit, listener-supported production. To help support our fall season, visit https://playingonair.org/donate. Thank you for listening!
Sun, 19 April 2020
There's a lot of money to be made at this funeral.
Friends and flames have gathered to celebrate and remember the WILD AND PRECIOUS LIFE of the charismatic, outrageous Sheila (Tony & Emmy winner Debra Monk) — but the dearly departed still has one more trick up her sleeve.
WILD AND PRECIOUS LIFE by Emmy winner Patricia Cotter (PoA's Rules of Comedy, The Daughters) features an ensemble cast of Playing on Air favorites — Monk, Scott Adsit, Lucy DeVito, Denise Manning, Lisa Emery, and Jeff Biehl — and original music by folk-rock duo Misner & Smith, produced and recorded by John Kilgore, arranged and performed by Charlie Rosen. Associate Producer Michele O’Brien directs. Stay tuned after the episode, as host Claudia Catania chats with the artists about celebrating life and how they’d like to be remembered.
Sun, 12 April 2020
Content Warning: Violence
“I don’t want you hunting anyone. What if you become the prey?”
On a night walk in Brooklyn, pregnant Ayanna and her husband Ezra witness a sudden, violent attack. But when they call the police, doubts arise. Did they get a good look at the attacker’s face? What color was his sweatshirt? And — why do their memories differ so drastically?
Originally commissioned as part of New Black Fest’s “Facing Our Truth: Ten-Minute Plays on Trayvon, Race and Privilege,” NIGHT VISION launches Playing on Air’s yearlong celebration of MacArthur ‘Genius Grant’ winner Dominique Morisseau (The Detroit Projects, Pipeline, Ain't Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations). Directed by Stori Ayers (Chautauqua Theater Company, "The Last O.G.”), NIGHT VISION stars OBIE winner April Matthis (Toni Stone, Elevator Repair Service, PoA’s Hate Baby) and Eden Marryshow (“Jessica Jones,” Broadway’s Ink) and features music by guest composer Jimmy Keys.
Sun, 5 April 2020
Tony Shalhoub and Kristine Nielsen star in Amanda Quaid’s THE CLAM, the Second Place winner of Playing on Air’s 2019 James Stevenson Prize competition.
After a lifetime of playing it safe , a wistful clam (Shalhoub) decides to come out of his shell with help from a therapist (Nielsen). His friends are disappearing without a trace, he’s lost touch with thousands of his children, and he’s desperate for a pearl to call his own. Alternately tongue-in-cheek and deeply identifiable, THE CLAM is a comedy for anyone who’s ever felt adrift in their search for happiness.
Tony nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Broadway’s Bernhardt/Hamlet, Hand to God) directs Tony, Emmy, and Golden Globe winner Shalhoub (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” The Band’s Visit, “Monk”) and Tony nominee Nielsen (Gary: A Sequel to Titus Androninus, PoA’s Wildwood Park). The opening episode of PoA’s 2020 Spring Season, THE CLAM was recorded live at New York’s Pershing Square Signature Center.