Cleveland Play House presents "The Good Peaches": Brett Mitchell & Laura Kepley

Featured Audio

Cleveland Play House, in Collaboration with The Cleveland Orchestra, Debuts World-Premiere Production of the Music-Theatre Odyssey  The Good Peaches

Written by Pulitzer Prize Winner Quiara Alegría Hudes

April 14 – 16 in the Allen Theatre

CLEVELAND, OH (January 13, 2016) – Cleveland Play House (CPH) and The Cleveland Orchestra  announce details of their latest collaboration, The Good Peaches, a play commissioned by CPH and written by Pulitzer Prize and Roe Green Award-winning playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes. The play will make its world premiere April 14 – 16 on the Allen Theatre stage.  The Good Peaches features three actors and a 55-piece chamber orchestra and will be directed by CPH Artistic Director Laura Kepley and conducted by the Orchestra’s Associate Conductor, Brett Mitchell.  This presentation marks the third collaboration between CPH and the Orchestra and will feature music excerpted from Benjamin Britten’s Sea Interludes and John Adams’s Shaker Loops.  This production is part of the New Ground Theatre Festival, CPH’s annual showcase of new theatrical works, and was made possible by an Art Works Award from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), which supports both the creation and presentation of both new and existing work, lifelong learning in the arts, and public engagement with the arts.  Additional support was made possible by New Ground Honorary Producer Roe Green, the Keithley Fund for Artistic Collaboration and Westlake Reed Leskosky. 

Aurora’s task is simple: deliver a wedding dress to the queen.  But when an unexpected storm hits, the young girl finds herself on an adventure beyond her wildest imagination.  Music and theater will collide through the bursting swells of a massive storm and in an extraordinary teaming of actors and chamber orchestra.  Set amongst the stirring melodies of Benjamin Britten and John Adams, The Good Peaches combines a compelling drama of survival with live music performed by a world class orchestra. 

CPH Artistic Director Laura Kepley states, “Only two other major plays for actors and orchestra exist, so we are very proud to be working with Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Quiara Hudes, and collaborating with the world-class Cleveland Orchestra to add another play to the canon.  Cleveland audiences will experience it first but I am certain that orchestras around the country will be lining up to add this beautiful, evocative, girl versus nature musical odyssey to their seasons.”  

Brett Mitchell, Associate Conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra adds, “All of us at The Cleveland Orchestra are enormously excited to collaborate with Cleveland Play House on this groundbreaking project. Working with the entire CPH team throughout this process has been an absolute dream, and we're delighted that these great orchestral works of John Adams and Benjamin Britten are such an integral part of telling this magnificent new tale, written in such beautiful poetry by Quiara Hudes and brought to life with such spirit by this extraordinary company.”

CPH’s generous sponsors also include Centennial Season Sponsor KeyBank and Centennial Community Outreach Sponsor Dominion.  Cleveland Play House is also grateful to the George Gund Foundation and the Cleveland Foundation for their generous support of the Centennial Season. 

Featured Music
Overture: Benjamin Britten, Four Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: I. Dawn.
After Scene 1: Benjamin Britten, Four Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: II. Sunday Morning.
After Scene 2: Benjamin Britten, Four Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: IV: Storm.
After Scene 3: John Adams, Shaker Loops: I. Shaking and Trembling.
After Scene 4: John Adams, Shaker Loops: II. Hymning Slews.
After Scene 5: John Adams, Shaker Loops: III. Loops and Verses.
Epilogue: John Adams, Shaker Loops IV. A Final Shaking.

Performance Dates, Location & Times
Cleveland  Play House, Allen Theatre
1407 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44115
Thursday, April 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, April 15 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 at 7:30 p.m.


The Good Peaches Creative Team

QUIARA ALEGRÍA HUDES (Playwright) is a Pulitzer Prize winning playwright whose work has been produced around the globe, from Broadway’s Richard Rodgers Theatre, to Off-Broadway’s Second Stage, to London’s Southwark Playhouse, to translated productions in Armenia, Germany, Brazil, Korea, Japan, Puerto Rico, and beyond. Her plays include The Happiest Song Plays LastWater by the Spoonful (Pulitzer Prize for Drama), Elliot A Soldier’s Fugue (Pulitzer Finalist), and the book of the Broadway musical In the Heights (Pulitzer Finalist, Tony Award for Best Musical, Tony Nomination for Best Book of a Musical, Lucille Lortel Award, Outer Critics Circle Award). A passionate teacher, Hudes is honored to be the Shapiro Distinguished Professor of Writing and Theatre at Wesleyan University, where she teaches playwriting. She is an artist-in-residence at Signature Theatre, where she will premiere three new plays over the next five years. Previously, she was a Page 73 Playwriting Fellow and a resident writer at New Dramatists. Other honors have included the United States Artists Fontanals Fellowship, the Joyce Fellowship at the Goodman Theatre, the Aetna New Voices Fellowship at Hartford Stage, the Roe Green Award at the Cleveland Playhouse, and fellowships at the Sundance Theater Institute and the O’Neill Theater Center. March 16, 2014 was named “Quiara Alegría Hudes Day” in the City of Philadelphia and Mayor Rahm Emmanuel declared April 27, 2013 “Quiara Hudes Day” in Chicago. She was featured in “Latinas of the Year” in Latina Magazine.  After graduating from public school in Philadelphia, Hudes received a B.A. in music composition from Yale University and an M.F.A. in playwriting from Brown, where she studied with Paula Vogel. She was recently inducted into the Central High School Hall of Fame--in the first group of women to receive this honor since the school’s founding in 1836.  Hudes is on the board of Philadelphia Young Playwrights, which produced her first play in the tenth grade. She lives in New York with her husband and children.

LAURA KEPLEY (Director) is in her third season as Artistic Director and has directed Cleveland Play House mainstage productions of The Crucible, Fairfield (world premiere), The Little Foxes, Venus in Fur, Good People (also at Syracuse Stage), A Carol for Cleveland (world premiere), In the Next Room, or the vibrator play, My Name is Asher Lev and CPH readings of Roe Green Award-winning plays Soups, Stews and Casseroles: 1976, Marjorie Prime and Daphne’s Dive. She joined CPH in 2010 as Associate Artistic Director, having arrived from Trinity Repertory Company in Providence, Rhode Island where she was Resident Director and Artistic Associate for four seasons and Interim Director of the Brown/Trinity Rep M.F.A. in Directing Program for one. She has also directed for The Alliance Theatre, Asolo Repertory Theatre, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Contemporary American Theatre Festival, among others. A native Ohioan, Laura received her undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and her Master of Fine Arts from Brown University/Trinity Rep. She is a Drama League Fellow and a recipient of the 2009—2011 National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Career Development Program for Directors.

BRETT MITCHELL (Conductor) The 2015-16 season is Brett Mitchell’s third year as a member of The Cleveland Orchestra’s conducting staff and as music director of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.  His contract has been extended through the 2016-17 season, with his title raised from assistant conductor to associate conductor.  Mr. Mitchell serves as cover conductor for Severance Hall and Blossom Music Festival subscription concerts, and provides assistance to music director Franz Welser-Möst — in his first season, he stepped in on several occasions to lead concerts of The Cleveland Orchestra for ailing colleagues, at Severance Hall and Blossom.  In June 2015, he led the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra in the ensemble's second international tour, to China. As a guest conductor, Mr. Mitchell has led performances throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, including appearances with the orchestras of Columbus, Detroit, Houston, Milwaukee, Oregon, Rochester, Saint Paul, and Washington D.C., and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony, among others.  He has also acted as musical assistant and cover conductor with the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, London Philharmonic Orchestra, and Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra.  Recent return engagements include appearances with the orchestras of Detroit, Houston, Rochester, Saint Paul, and Washington D.C. A native of Seattle, Brett Mitchell holds a doctor of musical arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin.  He earned a bachelor of music degree in composition from Western Washington University, participated in the National Conducting Institute in Washington D.C., and studied extensively with Lorin Maazel at the Castleton Festival and with Kurt Masur as a recipient of the inaugural American Friends of the Mendelssohn Foundation Scholarship.

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