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Geffen Playhouse Presents the West Coast Premiere of "The Niceties"

GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE PRESENTS THE WEST COAST PREMIERE OF “THE NICETIES”

WRITTEN BY ELEANOR BURGESS AND DIRECTED BY KIMBERLY SENIOR

FEATURING LISA BANES AND JORDAN BOATMAN

PREVIEWS BEGIN APRIL 9 - OPENING NIGHT IS APRIL 17

LOS ANGELES (February 4, 2019) – Geffen Playhouse will present the West Coast premiere of The Niceties, it was announced today, written by Eleanor Burgess (Chill, Start Down) and directed by Kimberly Senior (Disgraced, Career Suicide). This world premiere production of The Niceties is currently running at McCarter Theatre Center in New Jersey, and replaces Antigone in the Geffen Playhouse 2018/2019 season lineup.

The production features Lisa Banes (Present Laughter on Broadway, Gone Girl) as the professor Janine, and Jordan Boatman (Hulu’s The Path) as the student Zoe, in this story of a white professor and a black student who become involved in a polite clash of perspectives that quickly explodes into an urgent and dangerous debate threatening to ruin both their lives.

Previews for The Niceties begin Tuesday, April 9, in the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse. Opening night is Wednesday, April 17, and the production will close Sunday, May 12.

At an elite East Coast university, an ambitious young black student and her esteemed white professor meet to discuss a paper the college junior is writing about the American Revolution. They’re both liberal. They’re both women. They’re both brilliant. But very quickly, discussions of grammar and Google turn to race and reputation, and before they know it, they’re in dangerous territory neither of them had foreseen — and facing stunning implications that can’t be undone.

The world premiere of The Niceties was co-produced in the 2018-2019 season by the Huntington Theatre Company (Peter DuBois, Artistic Director, Michael Maso, Managing Director), Boston, MA; Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, Artistic Director, Barry Grove, Executive Producer), New York, NY; and McCarter Theatre Center (Emily Mann, Artistic Director/Resident, Playwright Michael S. Rosenberg, Managing Director), Princeton, NJ. Originally developed at the Contemporary American Theater Festival in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, in July 2017, under the leadership of Ed Herendeen, Producing Director, and Peggy McKowen, Associate Producing Director. Developed in part at Portland Stage Company, Anita Stewart, Executive & Artistic Director.

THE NICETIES

Written by Eleanor Burgess
Directed by Kimberly Senior

Previews: Tuesday, April 9 – Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Opening Night:Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Closing Night: Sunday, May 12, 2019

CAST
Lisa Banes as Janine
Jordan Boatman as Zoe

PRODUCTION TEAM
Set Designer Cameron Anderson
Costume Designer Kara Harmon
Lighting Designer D.M. Wood
Original Music and Sound Design by Elisheba Ittoop
Casting Director Alaine Alldafer

PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE
Monday No performance
Tuesday – Friday 8:00 p.m.
Saturday 3:00 and 8:00 p.m.
Sunday 2:00 and 7:00 p.m.

Running time is 90 minutes, with one 15 minute intermission

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

TICKET INFORMATION
Tickets currently priced at $30.00 - $120.00. Available in person at the Geffen Playhouse box office, by phone at 310.208.5454 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org.Fees may apply.

Rush tickets for each day’s performance are made available to the general public 30 minutes before showtime at the box office. $35.00 General / $10.00 Student

COLLEGE AUDIENCES
Through a variety of events and other opportunities, the Geffen Playhouse welcomes college students to experience the live storytelling presented on our stages. We are proud of our association with UCLA’s School of Theater, Film, and Television, and open our doors to all college students throughout Los Angeles. More information is available at www.geffenplayhouse.org/college.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Eleanor Burgess (Playwright)
Eleanor Burgess's work has been produced at Manhattan Theatre Club, McCarter Theatre Center, Huntington Theatre Company, Alliance Theatre, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Portland Stage Company and Centenary Stage, and developed with The New Group, New York Theatre Workshop, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Salt Lake Acting Company, the Lark Play Development Center and the Kennedy Center/NNPN MFA Playwrights Workshop. She's been a member of Page 73's writers' group Interstate 73 and The Civilians' R&D Group, and the recipient of the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Award, an EST/Sloan commission, a Huntington Playwriting Fellowship, a Keen Teens Commission and the Susan Glaspell Award for Women Playwrights. She grew up in Brookline, Massachusetts, studied history at Yale College and recently completed the M.F.A. in Dramatic Writing at NYU/Tisch.

Kimberly Senior (Director)
Kimberly Senior directed the Broadway premiere of Ayad Akhtar's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Disgraced, which she previously directed Off-Broadway at Lincoln Center Theater (LCT3), Goodman Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Berkeley Rep and Mark Taper Forum. Off­-Broadway: The Niceties (Manhattan Theatre Club), Career Suicide (produced by Judd Apatow), Sakina's Restaurant (Audible), Discord (Primary Stages), Engagements (Second Stage Theater), The Who and the What (LCT3). Regionally: Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley (Milwaukee Repertory Theater); The Niceties (Huntington Theatre Company); Disgraced, Rapture, Blister, Burn and Support Group for Men (Goodman Theatre); Buried Child, The Scene, Marjorie Prime, The Diary of Anne Frank, Hedda Gabler, The Letters (Writers Theatre); Sheltered (Alliance Theatre); Sex with Strangers (Geffen Playhouse); Want andThe North Plan (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); Other Than Honorable (Geva Theatre Center); among others. Television: Chris Gethard: Career Suicide (HBO). Senior is the recipient of the 2016 Special Non-Equity Jeff Award, 2016 Alan Schneider Award (TCG) and 2018 Einhorn Award (Primary Stages).

Lisa Banes (Janine)
Broadway: Rumors, High Society, Arcadia, Accent on Youth, Present Laughter. Off­-Broadway: Look Back in Anger (Theatre World Award), A Call From the East, My Sister in this House (Obie Award), Three Sisters, Antigone, Isn't it Romantic (Drama Desk nomination), Emily, Fighting International Fat, Ten by Tennessee, The Alice Complex, Go Back to Where You Are, The Niceties. Film: Gone Girl, A Cure for Wellness, The Hotel New Hampshire, Marie, Young Guns, Cocktail, Dragonfly, The Jackal, Pumpkin, Without Limits, Freedom Writers. Acres of television includes the series The Trials of Rosie O'Neil, Girls Club, Son of the Beach. Recurring roles include China Beach, Six Feet Under, King of Queens, Royal Pains, Masters of Sex, Nashville. Graduate of the Juilliard School and alumna of The Acting Company.

Jordan Boatman (Zoe)
Jordan Boatman is a 2018 graduate of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and recently appeared in Hulu's The Path. Some of her favorite past roles include Berniece in August Wilson's The Piano Lessonand Emilia from Shakespeare's Othello. lnstagram: @jordanknolveree

OPENING NIGHT SPONSORS
Audi of America
City National Bank
Hint
KIND Snacks
Napa Valley Grille
Sipsmith Gin

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 welcomes an audience of more than 130,000 each year, and maintains extensive education and community engagement programs, designed to involve underserved young people and the community at large in the arts. www.geffenplayhouse.org

DOWNLOAD KEY ART FROM THE GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE WEBSITE HERE:
https://geffenplayhouse.org/gallery_photos.php?gallery_id=177

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MEDIA CONTACT
Zenon Dmytryk
Geffen Playhouse

310.966.2405