The Aliens by Annie Baker

//The Aliens by Annie Baker
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Directed by David M. Jenkins

 

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Two lost and disillusioned young men sit behind a Vermont coffee shop and discuss music and Bukowski. When a lonely high-school student arrives on the scene, they decide to teach him everything they know. A play with music about friendship, art, love and death.

“Gentle and extraordinarily beautiful…inordinately delicate…Ms. Baker may just have the subtlest way with exposition of anyone writing for the theater today…there is something distinctly Chekhovian in the way her writing accrues weight and meaning simply through compassionate, truthful observation.” —NY Times

“[Baker] again employs nakedly humanist sympathies and carefully cloaked formal rigor, this time to illustrate the twin solaces of friendship and art…Without losing her keen ear for the humor in modern language, Baker turns to classicism—the Aristotelian unities are here, but so are the symbolically loaded entrances and the final act messenger speech. With such Grecian clarity in its bones, THE ALIENS can afford incredible layers of detail without ever seeming muddled.” —Time Out NY

“The talented young playwright Annie Baker sets her new play behind a Vermont café, in a break area dotted with dead plants and milk crates that’s accessible only by hopping a fence…Baker’s gift is for humor and empathy—we’d roll our eyes at KJ and Jasper in real life, but she shows us their absurdity and makes us love them.” —The New Yorker

 

Meet The Artists

annie-bakerAnnie Baker (Playwright) grew up in Amherst, Massachusetts. Her full-length plays include BODY AWARENESS (Atlantic Theater Company, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle nominations for Best Play/Emerging Playwright), CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION (Playwrights Horizons, OBIE Award for Best New American Play, Drama Desk nomination for Best Play), THE ALIENS (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, OBIE Award for Best New American Play), and NOCTURAMA. Her work has also been developed and produced at New York Theatre Workshop, MCC, Soho Rep, the Orchard Project, the Ontological-Hysteric, Ars Nova, the Huntington, South Coast Rep, the Magic Theater, the Cape Cod Theatre Project, the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, and the Sundance Institute Theatre Lab in Utah and Ucross, Wyoming. Annie is a member of New Dramatists, MCC’s Playwrights Coalition, and EST, and an alumna of Youngblood, Ars Nova’s Play Group, and the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab. Recent honors include a New York Drama Critics Circle Special Citation, a Susan Smith Blackburn Prize nomination, a Time Warner Storytelling Fellowship, a MacDowell Fellowship, and commissions from Center Theatre Group and Playwrights Horizons, MFA, Mac Wellman’s playwriting program at Brooklyn College.

david-jenkins-headshotDavid M. Jenkins (Director/Sound Designer) is the Producing Artistic Director and a co-founder of Jobsite Theater, the resident theater company at the Straz Center. He holds a Ph.D. in Communication (Performance Studies) from the University of South Florida, an M.F.A. in Acting from the University of Florida, and a B.A. in Theater Performance, also from USF. He has additionally studied with Moscow State University, the Russian Academy of Theatre Arts (GITIS) and the San Francisco Mime Troupe. David teaches in both the Theater department and Honors College at USF. He has recently directed productions of The Maids, Lebensraum, SILENCE! The Musical, Annapurna (with Summer Bohnenkamp), Twelfth Night, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom, Return to the Forbidden Planet, Macbeth and Hedwig and the Angry Inch. He still occasionally dabbles in acting, most recently Time Stands Still (James), Sins of the Mother (Frankie/Philly Verga), The Hound of the Baskervilles (Dr. Watson), and The Lonesome West (Coleman). The latter earned him a Theatre Tampa Bay nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor, recognition as a Top 9 performance of 2013 by Creative Loafing’s Mark Leib, and the Best Actor Award in CL’s Best of the Bay Reader’s Poll. He was the 2014 recipient of the Best Director Award from CL’s Reader’s Poll and Best Director of a Musical in the BroadwayWorld Tampa Regional Awards. Creative Loafing has twice honored him as both Best Artistic Director and Best Actor. David has published articles in Text & Performance Quarterly, Liminalities, and Departures in Critical Qualitative Research. He lives in Tampa Heights in a neat old house with his rad wife and a mess of critters.

KJ

KJ

DERRICK PHILLIPS  (KJ) was most recently scene in the role of Orlando in As You Like It  at Jobsite Theatre.. Other regional credits include: Jimmy Floyd in The Pitmen Painters at American Stage, Richard in Richard III, Leonato in Much Ado About Nothing, Macduff in Macbeth, Lord Capulet in Romeo and Juliet(Tampa Shakespeare Festival); Actor #2 in Lebensraum, Theo in The Underpants (Jobsite Theatre); Man in Tender Napalm (TRT2); Joseph Cardin in The Children’s Hour and Peter Shaw in Silent Sky (Tampa Repertory Theatre); The 39 Steps and Fox on the Fairway (Southern Arena Theatre). Chicago credits include: Ludicrous Theatre and Riddlemark Theatre. Derrick will be appearing in Aliens at Stageworks Theatre this season. He serves as an artistic associate with the Tampa Shakespeare Festival. He received his MFA in Performance from the University of Southern Mississippi. He would like to thank his family and friends for their love and support.

Jasper

Jasper

Chris Jackson (Jasper) is a native of Tampa and has been seen on Bay Area stages for over a decade. His most recent credits include Hamlet in Hamlet, Louis De Rougemont in Shipwrecked,  Lucas Brickman in Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Lyman Sanders in Harvey, and he won the Tampa Bay Theatre award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Matt in Good Egg. In 2016, Jackson founded Jackson Fresh Pictures, specializing in photography and independent film production.

 

 

 

 

 

Evan

Evan

FRANCO COLON (Evan) will be making his second appearance at Stageworks Theatre, having played Yo-Yo in the season opener, Psycho Beach Party. He has acted in the Orlando area since his freshman year in high school. He looks forward to expanding into the Tampa area and is He is grateful for his parents and friends for the constant support they continue to show in all of his endeavors! He is so excited to perform such a beautiful show!

 

 

 

 

 

FRANK CHAVEZ (Scenic and Costume Designer)  has worked as a costume and scenic designer for 20 years. Previous Stageworks designs include, Psycho Beach Party,The Divine Sister, Sylvia, Of Mice and Men and A Raisin in the Sun and Ain’t Misbehavin’. Frank’s designs have also been seen at American Stage (The Piano Lesson, Seven Guitars, Hair) and Tampa Rep (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Heroes). This year he received his third Best of the Bay award, two for Scenic Design and one for Costume Design. Along with his local work, Frank has designed numerous productions Off­-Broadway and regionally. He is currently the resident Costume Designer at the University of Tampa.

jo_headshotJo Averill-Snell (Lighting Designer) is delighted to be designing Aliens. Stageworks audiences have recently seen her light Broadway Bound, This Wonderful life, and The Motherfucker with the Hat.  Next she will be lighting The Other Place for Tampa Rep.  Jo is also the Artistic Director for literary performance troupe Improbable Athenaeum, for whom she will be directing Lady Gregory Augusta’s The Story Brought by Brigid in April.  

 

 

 

 

amandaAmanda Zappia (Production Stage Manager)  is excited to be back at Stageworks! She last worked as a production stage manager for Psycho Beach Party and The Great Gatsby. She is a working actor and stage manager around the Tampa area but considers Stageworks a home! She gives thanks to everyone who has ever supported her. Continue to support local theatre!

 

 

 

 

 

mariana-headshotMariana Rocha Hunt (Rehearsal Stage Manager)  is a 2011 University of Tampa Theater Performance graduate, who has been wearing many hats for the past 10+ years. Lately, things have gotten even busier for her, which doesn’t al- low her to be as involved in theater as she would like. However, Mariana is al- ways excited to have the opportunity to come back to her theater family and to have Stageworks to call home. Seeing a product of art growing is an incredible thing, and she is eternally grateful to all those who contribute to that experience. She’d like to thank her theater family – for all their hard work, commitment and dedication, and for always welcoming her back; you – for supporting local arts; and her husband Jon – for the never ending love, support, encouragement and inspiration. Happy Holidays everyone, and to all an amazing 2017!