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GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE ANNOUNCES WORLD PREMIERE OF LIVE, VIRTUAL AND INTERACTIVE THEATRICAL EXPERIENCE “INSIDE THE BOX”
WRITTEN AND PERFORMED BY PUZZLE MASTER AND MAGICIAN DAVID KWONG
MARKS SECOND FULL-LENGTH PRODUCTION FROM GEFFEN STAYHOUSE
PREVIEWS BEGIN SEPTEMBER 29 - OPENING NIGHT IS OCTOBER 8
LOS ANGELES (September 3, 2020) – Geffen Playhouse today announced the world premiere of Inside the Box, a live, virtual, and interactive theatrical experience written and performed by renowned puzzle master, magician, and New York Times crossword constructor David Kwong. Inside the Box marks the second full-length production to emerge from the Geffen’s recently launched Geffen Stayhouse banner.
Inside the Box takes us into the world of puzzles with magician and New York Times crossword constructor David Kwong. As he regales us with stories of the world’s most extraordinary puzzle-makers through history, we are treated to an entirely interactive event of puzzle-solving, wordplay, multi-layered games, and surprises.
Inside the Box will take place virtually via the Zoom platform with a maximum of 24 participants per show. Each participant will receive an advance email with a link to download and print a packet of puzzles they will use to participate and interact with Kwong during the live performance.
“David Kwong’s brand-new show takes us on a puzzle-solving, code-breaking wild ride through the history of puzzle-making,” said Geffen Playhouse Artistic Director Matt Shakman. “Part game night, part mystery, and 100% exciting interactive theatre, Inside the Box is a virtual gift from one of our great puzzle masters. And if you love this show, you can see David live and in-person at the Geffen next spring in The Enigmatist.”
“When you sit down to solve a crossword puzzle, you’re engaging in an invisible connection with the puzzle-maker. The puzzle-maker’s goal is to challenge your brain, throw in some amusing twists and turns, and maybe even a little misdirection (after all, I am a magician),” said Kwong. “With Inside the Box, I’m excited to bring games, wordplay, and mystery into your home through virtual puzzles. These puzzles will be fun, interactive, and not too hard, I promise! So put on your thinking caps, bring the whole family, and join the puzzle party!”
The world premiere of Inside the Box marks an ongoing collaboration between Kwong and the Geffen. After postponement due to COVID-19, his one-man show The Enigmatist will make its West Coast premiere in 2021 at Geffen Playhouse as part of the theater’s 25th Anniversary Season. The Enigmatist had its world premiere in 2019, with a sold-out run of 125 performances at The High Line Hotel in New York.
The Geffen Stayhouse banner originally launched in March 2020, in response to the Geffen temporarily closing as a result of COVID-19. This new initiative began by providing free, short-form original content from Geffen Playhouse alumni and others on a weekly basis, including Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays (Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, A Gentlemen’s Guide to Love and Murder), Tony Award nominee Rory O’Malley (Hamilton, The Book of Mormon), Obie Award winner Lauren Patten (Jagged Little Pill, Fun Home), Emmy Award nominee Kathryn Hahn (Transparent, Bad Moms), Drama Desk Award winner Benjamin Scheuer (The Lion), Drama Desk Award nominee Dixie Longate (Dixie’s Tupperware Party), and others.
Geffen Stayhouse went on to develop and produce its first full-length effort The Present, a live, virtual, and interactive experience from magician, illusionist, and storyteller Helder Guimaráes, which made its world premiere in April 2020. Currently running, The Present has been extended three times and will close Saturday, October 17, with a special grand finale performance that is available to audiences worldwide.
Previews for Inside the Box begin September 29. Opening night is October 8.
INSIDE THE BOX
Written and Performed by David Kwong
Previews: Tuesday, September 29 – Wednesday, October 7
Opening Night: Thursday, October 8
Closing Night: Sunday, November 8
PRODUCTION TEAM CREDITS
Creative Director Brett J. Banakis
Puzzle Consultant Dave Shukan
Video Designer Josh Higgason
Dramaturg Amy Levinson
Monday No performance
Tuesday 6:00 p.m. PT
Wednesday 8:00 p.m. PT
Thursday 6:00 p.m. PT
Friday 8:00 p.m. PT
Saturday 3:00 and 8:00 p.m. PT
Sunday 2:00 and 7:00 p.m. PT
Tickets are currently priced at $55.00 - $65.00 per household. Available by phone at 310.208.2028 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org. Fees may apply.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
David Kwong (Writer and Performer)
With his expertise in enigmas and illusions, David Kwong delights and challenges audiences around the world with his intellectual brand of magic. A veteran “cruciverbalist” (crossword puzzle constructor), Kwong routinely creates puzzles for the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Wall Street Journal. Kwong was the puzzle and secret code consultant for the hit NBC show Blindspot. He was the head magic consultant on the 2013 worldwide hit film Now You See Me. Other films Kwong has worked on include The Imitation Game, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, Project Power and The House with a Clock in its Walls. A TED Talk favorite, Kwong regularly speaks to companies, demonstrating the principles of illusion and the science of why your brain is fooled. Kwong’s book Spellbound: Seven Principles of Illusion to Captivate Audiences and Unlock the Secrets of Success was published by Harper Business. After 125 sold-out performances in New York, Kwong’s one-man show, The Enigmatist, will premiere in Los Angeles in 2021 at Geffen Playhouse. Kwong is a graduate of Harvard University, where he studied the history of magic.
OPENING NIGHT SPONSORS
City National Bank
ABOUT GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE
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 Executive Director Gil Cates, Jr., Artistic Director Matt Shakman and Board Chair Howard Tenenbaum. Proudly associated with UCLA, the Geffen maintains extensive education and community engagement programs, designed to involve underserved young people and the community at large in the arts. www.geffenplayhouse.org
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