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Cast Announced for West Coast Premiere of These Paper Bullets!



LOS ANGELES (August 5, 2015) – Geffen Playhouse announces the cast of the the West Coast premiere of THESE PAPER BULLETS! A Modish Ripoff of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing opening the not-for-profit organization’s 20th anniversary season in the Gil Cates Theater. Written by Pulitzer Prize finalist and Emmy Award nominated writer Rolin Jones (Friday Night Lights, Boardwalk Empire) with songs by Grammy Award winner Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong and staged by Jackson Gay, THESE PAPER BULLETS! was commissioned by Yale Repertory Theatre where it premiered in 2014.

The cast of THESE PAPER BULLETS! features James Barry, Kate Blumberg, Damon Duanno (Brief Encounter on Broadway), Christopher Geary, Brad Heberlee, Justin Kirk (Showtime’s Weeds, HBO’s Angels in America, ABC’s Modern Family), Tony Manna, Rod MacLachlan (Magnolia, The Audience on Broadway), Keira Naughton, Adam O’Byrne (Netflix’s Bosch and CBS’ Extant), Lucas Papaelias (Once on Broadway), Nicole Parker (Wicked on Broadway, MADtv) Greg Stuhr (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Fish in the Dark on Broadway), Nick Ullett (Loot on Broadway) and Ariana Venturi.

The show will run from September 8 through October 18, 2015 in the Gil Cates Theater, with the opening night on September 16. THESE PAPER BULLETS! is a co-production with Atlantic Theater Company in New York and will be performed there following the Geffen Playhouse engagement.

Meet the Quartos. Ben, Claude, Balth, and Pedro. Their fans worship them. Scotland Yard fears them. And their former drummer will stop at nothing to destroy them. Can these fab four from Liverpool find true love in London and cut an album in seven nights?

TIME magazine called THESE PAPER BULLETS! one of the “10 Reasons for Theater Lovers to Leave New York in 2014,” and topped the list of the Hartford Courant’s Best 10 Theater Productions for 2014.

Charles Isherwood of The New York Times said, “All the mod markers have been spruced up and put in place in this freely swinging Shakespeare-inspired romp. Cheekily described as ‘a modish ripoff’ of Much Ado About Nothing, the production evokes with tangy authority the sights, sounds and styles of London rumbling through the youthquake years. The Vidal Sassoon bobs are spot on; the bowl cuts for the boys raise a smile; A-line miniskirts expose milky thighs above go-go boots snugly hugging calves. The strumming guitars and tight harmonies are provided by Billie Joe Armstrong, who has written a small but select group of pop nuggets for the show.”

Frank Rizzo in the Hartford Courant said, “I loved it! It somehow, improbably, delightfully works in what is the most playful, exuberant show of the season. Rolin Jones' witty, puckish mash-up of a script, Jackson Gay's giddy direction, Armstrong's terrific musical homage, and the ever-buoyant cast of mods and rockers —- and did I mention the nifty costumes, sets, arrangements and a guest appearance by the Queen of England? It all adds up to the most fun I've had at the theater since The Book of Mormon.”

Fred Sokol on Talking Broadway, said, “The result is a theatrical stunner: the show is most clever, musically smashing, complex, intriguing, amusing, and joyful. Performed with feeling, vivacity, and great discipline and showcasing songs by Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong, it is a multi-dimensional hit. Director Jackson Gay should be afforded a long bow for bringing all of this together.”

Los Angeles audiences may recall the Geffen Playhouse and Atlantic Theater Company last teamed-up in 2009 for the Atlantic Theater Company production of Farragut North. The Los Angeles run featured Dan Bittner, Mia Barron, Justin Huen, Chris Noth, Chris Pine, Olivia Thirlby and Isiah Whitlock, Jr.; the play enjoyed sell-out houses every performance and was later adapted into a feature film.

In addition to the opening night, the run of THESE PAPER BULLETS! will feature over a dozen pre-show and post-show Signature Series events. Ranging from the cerebral to the celebratory these include TGIF at the Geffen, Talk Back Tuesdays (Audience Q+A with artists), Lounge Fridays, Girls Night Out and Wine Down Sundays. Thanks to the support of Geffen Playhouse partners and sponsors, all elements of Signature Series evenings are complimentary as part of the ticket price. Signature Series events include:

Talk Back Tuesdays give theater lovers a chance for a deeper conversation to discuss plot, character, themes or any other questions directly with the artists with a post-show Q+A from the stage. Complimentary coffee and tea provided pre-show at the concessions bar.

• Happy hour Lounge Fridays turns the Geffen Playhouse into a haven to help fast-paced Angelenos ease into their weekend and unwind at this cultural happy hour. Complimentary sparkling joins other enticing refreshments starting at 7:00 pm. Sponsored by LAArtsOnline.com

Wine Down Sundays provides the perfect pairing – pre-performance wine sampling courtesy of Dievole followed by a 7pm curtain time to close out the week. The winery’s objective is to recover the character of the historically indigenous Tuscan grapes and transfer them into the glass with the utmost respect for the authenticity of the terroir and varietal identity.

• Geared towards the ladies, with enticements for the guys, Girls Night Out at the Geffen is the ultimate night out in LA. For the first after-party of our 20th anniversary season, popular designer and artist Reka Lena Silk returns with her gorgeous scarves on display and for sale. Plus eclectic jams from DJ Mike, signature cocktails, delectable buffets, a photo booth and Pixi Beauty take-away gift.

TGIF at the Geffen takes place on Friday of preview week and is the ideal cultural meet up and hot-spot on the west side. Enjoy classic to contemporary tunes from DJ Mike pre-show on the Simms Courtyard patio plus drink specials at the concessions bar.

For Signature Series dates associated with the run of THESE PAPER BULLETS!, visit http://www.geffenplayhouse.org/ThesePaperBullets

Tickets are currently priced from $32 to $82 and are available in-person at the Geffen Playhouse box office, via phone at 310.208.5454 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org. Fees may apply.

Geffen Playhouse in association with Atlantic Theater Company
Presents the Yale Repertory Theatre production of
THESE PAPER BULLETS! A Modish Ripoff of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing
Written by by Rolin Jones
Songs by Billie Joe Armstrong
Directed by Jackson Gay
West Coast Premiere in the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse
September 8 – October 18, 2015; Opening Night is Wednesday, September 16

James Barry as Pedro
Kate Blumberg as Paulina / Frida
Damon Daunno as Claude
Christopher Geary as Anton / Mr. Crumpet / Queen & Others
Brad Heberlee as Mr. Urges
Justin Kirk as Ben
Tony Manna as Mr. Cake
Rod McLachlan as Boris
Keira Naughton as Ulcie
Adam O’Byrne as Don Best
Lucas Papaelias as Balth
Nicole Parker as Beatrice
Greg Stuhr as Mr. Berry
Nick Ullett as Leo
Ariana Venturi as Higgy

Scenic Design by Michael Yeargan
Costume Design by Jessica Ford
Lighting Design by Paul Whitaker
Sound Design and Incidental Music by Broken Chord
Projection Design by Nicholas Hussong
Music Direction by Julie McBride
Choreography by Kevin Williamson
Fight Choreography by Mike Rossmy
Dialect Coach Paul Wager
Production Stage Manager Rob Chikar
Assistant Stage Manager Bree Sherry
Casting by Tara Rubin, CSA and Phyllis Schuringa, CSA

Monday No performance
Tuesday – Friday 8:00pm
Saturday 3:00pm; 8:00pm
Sunday 2:00pm; 7:00pm

Tickets are currently priced from $32 to $82 and are available in-person at the Geffen Playhouse box office, via phone at 310.208.5454 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org. Fees may apply.

Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse
10886 Le Conte Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Rolin Jones’ (Playwright) THESE PAPER BULLETS! received its 2014 world premiere at Yale Repertory Theatre and won four Connecticut Critics Circle Awards, including Best Production of the Year. His play The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow received the Obie Award for Excellence in Playwriting. Jenny Chow was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Drama and was produced at the Atlantic Theater Company (NYC), South Coast Repertory, Old Globe Theatre, Yale Rep, Studio Theatre (D.C.), Portland Center Stage, among others. His play The Jammer received an Edinburgh Fringe First Award for Best New Writing and was also produced Off-Broadway at the Atlantic Theater Company. He has written for the television shows Weeds, Friday Night Lights and Boardwalk Empire. His Friday Night Lights episode, The Son, received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Dramatic Writing and was named by Time magazine as the best episode of television for the year 2010. He recently wrote the film adaptation of American Idiot for Universal Pictures and is currently writing an adaptation of the “This American Life” episode, 129 Cars for the fine folks at Fox Television Studios. A proud founding member of the theater and television producing company, New Neighborhood.

Billie Joe Armstrong (Music and Lyrics) is the frontman of the Grammy Award winning, multi-platinum band Green Day. Green Day’s albums include 1039/Smooth Out Slappy Hours; Kerplunk; 1994’s Dookie, which sold 15 million copies and garnered their first Grammy (and inspired a raft of imitators); Insomniac; Nimrod; Warning; 2004’s landmark American Idiot, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard chart, spawned five hit singles, and won two Grammys, including Best Rock Album; 21st Century Breakdown (Grammy Award, Best Rock Album); and 2012’s consecutively released ¡Uno!, ¡Dos!, and ¡Tré! (as well as the behind the scenes DVD,¡Cuatro!). Last year, Armstrong and Norah Jones released Foreverly, a tribute to the Everly Brothers’ 1958 album, Songs Our Daddy Taught Us. The Tony and Grammy winning musical American Idiot, featuring lyrics by Armstrong, music by Green Day, and a book written by Armstrong and director Michael Mayer, debuted at Berkeley Rep in 2009 and opened on Broadway the next year. Throughout its run, Armstrong made cameo appearances in the role of St. Jimmy. The recent documentary, Broadway Idiot, chronicled his road to the Great White Way. His other film and TV credits include This is 40, Nurse Jackie, and the upcoming feature films, Like Sunday, Like Rain and Geezer greenday.com

Jackson Gay (Director) Upcoming projects: Jen Silverman’s The Moors (Yale Rep); Grounded by George Brant (Alley Theatre). Recent projects: I Saw My Neighbor On The Train And I Didn’t Even Smile by Suzanne Healthcote (co-production New Neighborhood/ Berkshire Theatre Festival); Elevada by Sheila Callaghan (Yale Rep); The Insurgents by Lucy Thurber (Labyrinth Theater Company); These Paper Bullets!, 2014 Connecticut Critics Circle Award Best Production and Best Director- (Yale Rep); 3C by David Adjmi (Rattlestick/piece by piece/Rising Phoenix); Kingdom City by Sheri Wilner (La Jolla Playhouse); Arlington by Victor Lodato with music by Polly Pen (San Francisco’s Magic Theatre); Lucy Thurber’s Where We’re Born - 2014 Obie Award winning The Hilltown Plays (Rattlestick); Rolin Jones’s The Jammer (Atlantic Theater Company) and The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow (Atlantic; Yale Rep, Connecticut Critics Circle Award – Outstanding Production of a Play); A Little Journey (Mint Theater Company; Drama Desk nomination – Outstanding Revival of a Play). Jackson is a founding member of New Neighborhood. She is the Director of Artistic Programming for Fuller Road Artist Residency in Vermont and teaches directing at Columbia University School of the Arts and Yale College. MFA Yale School of Drama.

Geffen Playhouse has been a hub of the Los Angeles theater scene since opening its doors in 1995. Noted for its intimacy and celebrated for its world-renowned mix of classic and contemporary plays, provocative new works and second productions, the not-for-profit organization continues to present a body of work that has garnered national recognition. Named in honor of entertainment mogul and philanthropist David Geffen, who made the initial donation to the theater, the company was founded by Gilbert Cates, and is currently helmed by Artistic Director Randall Arney, Executive Director Gil Cates, Jr., and Co-Chairs of the Board Martha Henderson and Pamela Robinson Hollander. Proudly associated with UCLA, the Geffen welcomes an audience of more than 130,000 each year, and maintains an extensive education and outreach program, designed to engage young people and the community at large in the arts. Following a strong 2014/2015 season during which five productions extended, the company’s 20th anniversary season features eight productions (two world and three West Coast premieres) featuring some of the nation’s leading playwrights and directors. www.geffenplayhouse.org.

Atlantic Theater Company (Neil Pepe, Artistic Director; Jeffory Lawson, Managing Director) is the award winning Off-Broadway theater that produces great plays simply and truthfully, utilizing an artistic ensemble. Atlantic believes that the story of a play and the intent of its playwright are at the core of the creative process. The plays in the Atlantic repertory, from both new and established playwrights, are boldly interpreted by today’s finest theater artists and resonate with contemporary audiences. Celebrating 30 years of theater since its inception in 1985, Atlantic has produced more than 150 plays, garnered 12 Tony Awards, 12 Lucille Lortel Awards, 15 Obie Awards, seven Drama Desk Awards, five Outer Critics Circle Awards and three Drama League Awards. Atlantic also operates The Atlantic Theater Company Acting School, which has an undergraduate program in conjunction with NYU, as well as a two-year professional acting program and a six-week intensive workshop every summer. Atlantic for Kids and the Educational Outreach Program partners with schools and teachers throughout the greater New York metropolitan area coordinating in-school visits of teaching artists and post-theater talkbacks.


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