Joan Stein and Richard Frankel (Producers) announced that the new theatrical event Standing On Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays, which premieres Off Broadway at the Minetta Lane Theatre in NYC this fall, will join with Tectonic Theater Project (Moisés Kaufman, Artistic Director; Greg Reiner, Executive Director) to help take the play's message of marriage equality across the globe. On Monday, November 14, Diversionary Theatre in association with La Jolla Playhouse will join in this effort by presenting a reading of Standing On Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays. Directed by Playhouse Artistic Director Christopher Ashley, the reading is intended to raise awareness and vital funds in support of marriage equality. Marriage equality is an issue that transcends borders, and it's vital that the message of Standing On Ceremony reaches far and wide.
This special performance of Standing On Ceremony will begin at 8:00 pm. Proceeds from the performance at Diversionary Theatre will benefit The San Diego LGBT Center's Marriage Equality Program.
"This series of short plays by such celebrated writers as Doug Wright, Moises Kaufman and Neil LaBute offers compelling and often hilarious perspectives on the state of gay marriage in our country," said La Jolla Playhouse Artistic Director Christopher Ashley. "It is vital that The Playhouse play a role in this national conversation, and we are delighted to partner with Diversionary Theatre to bring this astonishing and timely piece of theatre to San Diego audiences." John Alexander, Diversionary's Executive Director, had this to say, "we are thrilled at the chance to work with La Jolla Playhouse and Christopher Ashley on this timely and entertaining project and know it will get San Diego audiences talking."
To date, more than 40 theatres and universities are confirmed to participate, in 25 states across America including: Texas, North Dakota, Florida, Kansas and Michigan, where both gay marriage and civil unions are banned; North Carolina, where the vote on a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage was moved up to 2012; California, where gay marriage was legalized and then overturned by the passage of Proposition 8 in 2008; and many states where marriage equality is not yet a reality. Beyond America, theatres as far flung as Sydney, Australia will also participate, making this a truly international event
Christopher Ashley has served as Artistic Director of La Jolla Playhouse since October, 2007. During his tenure, he helmed the world premiere of Arthur Kopit and Anton Dudley's A Dram of Drummhicit, Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, the world premiere of Claudia Shear's Restoration, and the acclaimed musical Xanadu and Memphis, which won four 2010 Tony Awards including Best Musical. Mr. Ashley spearheads The Playhouse's Resident Theatre program, which encourages the artistic development of up-and-coming theatre companies and provides a temporary home each year to one of the many vibrant local theatre troupes without a permanent venue. He was also instrumental in developing The Edge series, a program designed to bring the freshest, most adventurous work to The Playhouse's stages. In addition, he oversaw the world premieres of Little Miss Sunshine, Limelight: The Story of Charlie Chaplin, Surf Report, Bonnie & Clyde, Doug Wright's adaptation of Creditors, the Page To Stage workshop of Charlayne Woodard's The Night Watcher, and the West Coast premiere of 33 Variations. Prior to joining The Playhouse, Mr. Ashley directed the Broadway productions of Xanadu (Drama Desk nomination), All Shook Up and The Rocky Horror Show (Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Award nominations), as well as the Kennedy Center Sondheim Celebration productions of Sweeney Todd and Merrily We Roll Along. Other New York credits include: Blown Sideways Through Life, Jeffrey (Lucille Lortel and Obie Awards), The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, Valhalla, Regrets Only, Wonder of the World, Communicating Doors, Bunny Bunny, The Night Hank Williams Died, Fires in the Mirror (Lucille Lortel Award), among others. He also directed the feature film Jeffrey and the American Playhouse production of Blown Sideways Through Life for PBS. Mr. Ashley is the recipient of the Princess Grace Award, the Drama League Director Fellowship and an NEA/TCG Director Fellowship.