We did it!

Last night, we announced the plays that Philadelphia Theatre Company will produce in our 2019-2020 45th Anniversary Season.  PTC will open with Obie Winner Adam Bock’s play A Small Fire, followed by Chelsea Marcantel’s Everything is Wonderful and finally go out with a bang, with the rowdy Pulitzer Finalist The Wolves. Sarah DeLappe’s award-winning first play took New York by storm in 2017, and we are thrilled to bring it to you.

As I considered plays for next year, the word “triumph” kept banging around in my head. Where were the characters who found a light at the end of something dark, that found redemption, forgiveness, peace, acceptance?  I looked for gestures of grace, and in each play there are tiny, tiny acts of kindness. A Small Fire features a woman used to running things - her construction business, her employees, her family. Her relationship to being in control is acutely tested when she suddenly and mysteriously starts losing her senses. Suddenly, she is vulnerable and we watch as she learns to relate to her family in a new way.

Everything is Wonderful burns slow.  It forces the audience to breathe, to listen, and to get comfortable with silence, with the cryptic and repressed dialogue of an Amish family grieving the untimely loss of two children. But both plays end with coups de theatre that offer true emotional catharsis. You may have noticed that lots of plays today have very ambiguous - even ambivalent - endings. These do not.  

A runaway hit Off-Broadway, and a 2017 Pulitzer Finalist, The Wolves is about a girls’ soccer team preparing for competition, and how their personalities intersect with friendship, ambition, and rivalry.  The Wolves, says Chris Jones of the Chicago Tribune, “is not just about girls, but about girls and their mothers, about how the adult world intersects with that of teenagers...given the news, we do a lousy job of protecting them, but here, at least, you feel that they are being understood.”

The upcoming season once again features an array of interesting women, and even if magical, surprising things happen to them, the characters in each play are relatable. There are no heroes or heroines; everyone is flawed in some way, but ultimately, triumphant.  

This season isn’t over yet, however. Don’t miss our final show of this season, How to Catch Creation, by Christina Anderson, and directed by Nataki Garrett, which begins previews this Friday, March 22nd. Christina is working on the play as we rehearse, shaping it for publication right here at PTC. How to Catch Creation is our first “Kilroys List” play, representing our commitment to providing opportunities for underproduced writers who identify as women, trans, and/or non-binary, who are nominated by industry leaders. Why? Much like we gave a home to the work of Terrence McNally and David Mamet, we now want PTC to be home to the next generation of important writers, telling today’s stories.

I’m excited that PTC will bring work to Philadelphia that might not otherwise be seen on this level.  It is our hope that by naming this commitment, audiences will connect with and value new work. We also hope that the Kilroys will, at first, be a source for more theatres and then ultimately, be rendered obsolete because the field is producing the full scope of stories that reflect our world.

We’re still learning from you, so I hope you’ll let me know what you think about our new season (read a little more about it HERE).  Feel free to ask questions, too...when subscriptions become available next month, we want you to be ready and excited to rejoin us at PTC.



PS - BIG NEWS!  Nataki Garrett, the director of PTC's How to Catch Creation, was named this morning as the new Artistic Director of Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  This is one of the most prestigious theaters in American today, and we congratulate Nataki on her appointment to this plum position.

See Nataki's work!  Call the box office at 215-985-0420 to get your tickets for How to Catch Creation, or visit our website.