The Catastrophic Theater will produce The Book of Grace by pioneering playwright Suzan-Lori Parks. The Book of Grace is directed by Luis Galindo and Jeff Miller and runs April 1 through April 24 at Midtown Arts and Theater Center Houston.
Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at matchouston.org or by calling the MATCH box office at 713-521-4533. Performances are Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m., and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. All performances are Pay-What-You-Can.
“Sometimes the Alien is in your own house. Sometimes in your own blood. And you have to build a wall around it.”
Grace is a waitress who lives in a small South Texas border town with her husband Vet, a Border Patrol agent. She encourages Vet’s estranged son, Buddy, to return home and reunite with his father in time for a celebration honoring Vet’s service. What ensues is a battle for power and revenge. In The Book of Grace, acclaimed playwright Suzan-Lori Parks explodes the American family portrait to expose the borders and fences destroying the American home and, by extension, the country.
Theater founders Jason Nodler and Tamarie Cooper have a long history with Parks that began with the commission and world premiere of his play f-ing A, which Parks also directed, with Catastrophic’s predecessor company, Infernal Bridegroom Productions ( IBP). The play had its New York premiere at the Public Theater and was widely produced and studied. Cooper and Nodler are delighted to produce this important piece by their old friend and collaborator. Despite his famous and prolific career, IBP introduced Parks to Houston audiences, and his work is still rarely produced in Houston.
Luis Galindo, Patricia Duran and Bryan Kaplún make up the dynamic cast. The Book of Grace is co-directed by Luis Galindo and Jeff Miller with sets by Ryan McGettigan, lighting by Andrew Archer, sound design by Yasminne “Jazz” Zepeda, costumes by Macy Lyne, props by Tabitha Bounds and a video by Tim Thompson. Scott Lupton will lead the stage with Courtney Lomelo, Lindsey Hardin, Clarity Welch and Edgar Guajardo rounding out the team.
Named one of Time magazine’s “100 Innovators for the Next Wave,” Suzan-Lori Parks is one of America’s most acclaimed playwrights today. She was the first black woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, is a recipient of the MacArthur “Genius” Prize, and in 2015 she received the prestigious Gish Prize for Excellence in the Arts. She has also received grants and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Rockefeller Foundation, Ford Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, and New York Foundation for the Arts. She is also the recipient of a Lila-Wallace Reader’s Digest Award, a CalArts/Alpert Award in the Arts, and a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. She is an alumnus of New Dramatists and Mount Holyoke College. Parks’ 365 Days/365 Plays project (where she wrote a play a day for an entire year) has been produced by over 700 theaters worldwide, making it one of the biggest grassroots collaborations ever. theater history. His other plays include Topdog/Underdog (2002 Pulitzer Prize winner); The Book of Grace; Unchain My Heart: The Musical Ray Charles; In the Blood (2000 Pulitzer Prize finalist); Venus (1996 OBIE Award); The death of the world’s last black man; Imperceptible Mutabilities in the Third Kingdom (1990 OBIE Award, Best New American Play); The America Play and f-ing A’s first IBP in 2000. His adaptation of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess won the 2012 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical. His recent cycle of plays, Father Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3) – set during the Civil War – received the Horton Foote Award, the Edward M. Kennedy Award for Drama and was 2015 Pulitzer Prize finalist.
All shows are held at the Midtown Arts and Theater Center (MATCH). Tickets can be ordered online (catastrophictheatre.com OR matchouston.org) or by phone (713-521-4533). ALL PERFORMANCES ARE PAID WHAT YOU CAN.
The Catastrophic Theater and the MATCH are closely monitoring developments around COVID-19 and the novel coronavirus that causes it, and are reaching out to the Houston Health Department, Harris County Public Health and other health authorities public for advice and recommendations. At this time, every audience member is required to wear a mask throughout the performance. MATCH is taking precautions to ensure guests stay safe and comfortable, including enhancing daily cleaning and sanitizing procedures that emphasize sanitizing public areas. They are also providing hand sanitizer and tissues in theaters, rehearsal rooms, offices and backstage.