East West Players (EWP), the nation’s longest-running professional theatre of color in the country and the largest producing organization of Asian American artistic work, is pleased to announce Nancy Keystone as director of our upcoming production of Next To Normal, which begins performances on May 11 and runs until June 11, 2017, with opening night on May 17.

Next to Normalmusic by Tom Kitt, and book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey—tells the story of the seemingly perfect Goodman family. However, Diana, the mother, is a little too happy. Her husband Dan constantly worries. Her daughter Natalie is awfully intent on getting that scholarship to Yale. And her son Gabe, well… This Tony Award- and Pulitzer Prize- winning rock musical is a heartbreaking, humorous, and unflinchingly authentic look at a suburban family struggling with the effects of bipolar disorder.

“What a great honor to work at East West Players, such a historically significant and artistically exciting organization,” says Next to Normal director Nancy Keystone. “I’m thrilled to be directing Next to Normal here. It’s a fascinating and powerful piece, and I can’t wait to dig into it with this group of actors and designers, who, no doubt, will shine new light on the story and ideas!”

“Nancy Keystone is one of the most interesting, innovative, and visionary directors that I know,” says EWP Artistic Director Snehal Desai. “I have been a huge fan of her work ever since I saw her production of The Dying Gaul in Atlanta a decade ago. I am thrilled to be introducing her bold vision for this musical to East West Players. Next to Normal is a profoundly moving piece of theater, and I can’t wait for Los Angeles theater audiences to experience it in the hands of this exceptionally talented production team led by Nancy.”

Nancy Keystone is a director, multi-disciplinary artist, and the artistic director of Critical Mass Performance Group (CMPG). Among CMPG’s works: Ameryka (Shakespeare Center of LA), Alcestis (Getty Villa and The Theatre @ Boston Court), Apollo (Kirk Douglas Theatre and Portland Center Stage), and The Akhmatova Project (CMPG). As a freelance artist she has directed and designed dozens of award-winning theatre productions and opera around the country including at Portland Center Stage, Center Theatre Group, Georgia Shakespeare Festival, Long Beach Opera, Actor’s Express (Atlanta), and San Francisco Shakespeare Festival. Keystone is the recipient of a 2014 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award, a United States Artists Hoi Fellowship (2011), Theatre Communications Group Alan Schneider Director Award (2003), and she has been named one of the Los Angeles Times’ “Faces To Watch.” She is on visiting faculty at UCLA, and is a frequent university guest lecturer. For more information, please visit www.nancykeystone.com.

The creative team includes Nancy Keystone (Director), Marc Macalintal (Music Director), Hana Sooyeon Kim (Scenic Design), Glenn Michael Baker (Assistant Scenic Design/Prop Master), Karyn Lawrence (Lighting Design), Bruce Yang (Assistant Lighting Design), Lena Sands (Costume Design), Cricket Lawrence (Sound Design), and Letitia Chang (Assistant Stage Manager).

All performances of Next to Normal will be staged at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the Union Center of the Arts at 120 Judge John Aiso Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Previews are Thursday, May 11 through Sunday, May 14, with 8pm shows from Thursday to Saturday, and a 2pm matinee show on Sunday. All preview seats are $30. Regular performances run from Thursday to Sunday, with 8pm shows from Thursday to Saturday, and 2pm matinee shows on Saturday and Sunday. Opening night is Wednesday, May 17 at 8pm. “Pay-What-You-Can” performance is on Thursday, May 18 at 8pm. The production runs until June 11.

Tickets may be purchased at www.eastwestplayers.org or please call (213) 625-7000, making sure to mention any wheelchair/accessible seating needs. Student, senior, and group discounts are available. General Admission ticket prices range from $30 to $70. Dates, details, and ticket prices are subject to change.

East West Players is proud to stage Next to Normal as part of Radiant, a 51st Anniversary Season that focuses on featuring stories by and about women.

For more information about East West Players, please visit www.eastwestplayers.org.


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