Mixed Blood substitutes previously announced spring show
THE UPSTAIRS CONCIERGE with exciting new play
by Philip Dawkins: CHARM!
Continuing its long-term investment in new work by our most exciting contemporary theatre makers, Mixed Blood will replace the previously announced spring show, THE UPSTAIRS CONCIERGE, with a new play by Philip Dawkins titled CHARM.
Mixed Blood Theatre’s production of THE UPSTAIRS CONCIERGE will be postponed, and audiences can expect to see this contemporary farce by Pulitzer-nominated playwright Kristoffer Diaz (The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity) in the 2017-18 season. To that end Diaz, who has been engaged in rewrites on the script, and Mixed Blood Artistic Director Jack Reuler, who is slated to direct, plan to workshop and produce a new version of the play at Arizona State University in early 2017.
Says Director Jack Reuler: I laughed aloud when I first read Kris’s modern-day farce about America’s toxic obsession with status and celebrity. It is a cultural blizzard of baseball scouts, paparazzi bloggers, gothic romance novelists, hotel owners, bellmen, and “the upstairs concierge” running wildly through six slamming doors. When he asked for more time to re-write and develop the show’s comic precision and structure, I reached out to long-time collaborators at ASU who shared my enthusiasm for supporting Kris’ process. It poses a win-win-win-win-win for playwright, university, its students, Mixed Blood, and Twin Cities audiences.
Good news for audiences is that they will still have an opportunity to see new work by Diaz on Mixed Blood’s stage, as he is one of the contributing writers to DJ LATINIDAD’S LATINO DANCE PARTY, opening March 4!
Replacing THE UPSTAIRS CONCIERGE is Philip Dawkins’ CHARM, a beguiling comic drama revolving around Mama Darleena, an African American trans woman in her 60s teaching an etiquette class to trans youth experiencing homelessness in a LGBTQI Chicago community center. Her students range in sexuality, race, and gender identity from a Latina trans woman, to a cisgender couple, to a member of a local gang, to a gay suburban teen. They fight each other and their instructor in equal measure, struggle through their daily battles with poverty, prejudice, and personal identity, seek solace in each other, succeed and fail separately and together. While loneliness, personal demons, and anti-social reactions dominate much of their lives, ultimately the rules of charm become rules for living. CHARM is a beautifully drawn portrait of pain, kindness, and an LGBTQI community in transition.
CHARM had its world premiere in late 2015 at the Steppenwolf Garage, produced and commissioned by Northlight Theatre. Mixed Blood’s production will be directed by NNPN Producer in Residence Addie Gorlin, and feature a cast of trans and cisgender actors. It opens April 22 and performs Wednesdays-Sundays through May 8.