ETC Opens 2015-2016 30th Anniversary Season with Regional Premiere of LUNA GALE

ENSEMBLE THEATRE CINCINNATI OPENS 2015-2016 30TH ANNIVERSARY
SEASON WITH THE REGIONAL PREMIERE OF LUNA GALE

ETC_Luna Gale logo(Cincinnati, OH) Fasten your seat belts for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati’s 30th anniversary lineup! The 2015-2016 season opens with the regional premiere of Luna Gale, an intense and heartbreakingly honest drama by award-winning playwright Rebecca Gilman. This forceful and sobering story examines our foster care system and how an innocent baby girl becomes the object of a family’s life-altering game of tug-of-war. LUNA GALE plays September 8-27, 2015 and is directed by D. Lynn Meyers.

Veteran social worker, Caroline, thinks she has a typical case on her hands when she meets Peter and Karlie, two teenage drug addicts accused of neglecting their baby. But when she places their infant daughter in the care of Karlie’s mother, Caroline sparks a family conflict that exposes a shadowy, secretive past—and forces her to make a risky decision with potentially disastrous consequences. Powerful and arresting, LUNA GALE is a heartbreaking and unforgettable tale about moral ambiguity and knowing how to do good in the world.

Cast includes several regulars Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati performers, including: Charlie Clark (Pastor Jay), Annie Fitzpatrick (Caroline), and Kate Wilford (Cindy).

Additionally, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati welcomes Brent Vimtrup (Cliff) in his ETC debut, as well as former 2014-2015 acting interns Molly Israel (Karlie), Patrick E. Phillips (Peter), and Natalie Joyce Smith (Lourdes) in their main stage debut.

“I’m a huge fan of Rebecca Gilman’s writing,” explains Producing Artistic Director D. Lynn Meyers. “When I read LUNA GALE, I have to admit that, at first, I felt it was unsettling with its honesty. It only took me a few more moments to realize that is why we needed to do it. Luna Gale has twists and turns that take us places we don’t expect. The show teaches us about judgment and our inability to sometimes see things clearly and fairly, even when a life lives in the balance.”

About the Cast

Annie Fitzpatrick (Caroline) recently appeared in Hands On A Hardbody at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati. Other favorite productions include: Next Fall, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Rabbit Hole, String of Pearls (for which she received an Acclaim Award), Wayfarer’s Rest, Intimate Apparel, The Exonerated, Women of Lockerbie, Earhart. In addition, she won Cincinnati Entertainment Awards for her performances in Copperheads, Dinner With Friends, and Mauritius. She appeared in Pride and Prejudice and Hank Williams: Lost Highway at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Little Women, A Man for All Seasons and Blithe Spirit at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, and Pluto and Collapse at the Know Theatre of Cincinnati. She has worked regionally at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Geva Theatre, Florida Stage, Florida Studio, CATCO, Human Race Theatre Co., Porthouse Theatre, and New Edgecliff Theatre. She was a founding member of The New Group in New York and toured internationally with Murder à La Carte. She has appeared in numerous soaps and in local and national commercials. TV and film credits include Those Who Kill on A&E, Army Wives, Little Accidents, Fun Size, and Milk Money.

Charlie Clark (Pastor Ray) was last seen at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati as Benny Perkins in Hands on a Hardbody and Don in Rapture, Blister, Burn. Previous Cincinnati credits include Next to Normal, Next Fall, Grey Gardens, Don’t Make Me Pull This Show Over, The Frog Princess, and Alice in Wonderland, all with Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati; Carousel, Oliver! and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, all at The Carnegie; Loves Labour’s Lost and Henry VIII, both with Cincinnati Shakespeare. Other local credits include The Full Monty, Sunday in the Park with George and Take Me Out for New Stage Collective; See What I Wanna See, Know Theatre; Hello Again, The Satori Group; and Charlie in The Charlie Clark Show at the 2008 Fringe Festival. Prior Chicago credits include Kiss of the Spider Woman with Apple Tree Theatre, The Hawkshaws with The Baum House, Merrily We Roll Along, Into the Woods and Company, all for Porchlight Music Theatre Chicago, among others.

Molly Israel (Karlie) is a graduate of Muhlenberg College and was a member of Ensemble Theatre’s 2014-2015 Acting Intern Company where favorite roles included Love and Information (Ensemble) and The Other Place (The Woman U/S). At Muhlenberg, her stage credits included Riley in the world premiere of Brighde Mullins’ The Bourgeois Pig and Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, for which she received Irene Ryan nominations. Next, Ms. Israel will be flying off to Neverland to play Molly Aster in the Cleveland premiere of Peter and the Starcatcher at the Dobama Theatre in December.

Patrick E. Phillips (Peter) is a graduate of Xavier University where he received his BA in Theatre and English. He is also the recipient of the League of Cincinnati Theatres’ 2014 Rising Star Award and was nominated for Best Supporting Actor the same year. He was last seen on the ETC stage in the 2014-2015 Acting Intern production of Love and Information (Ensemble) and in the holiday show, Sleeping Beauty (Branch/Dragon). During his internship, he understudied Michael G. Bath (Hands on a Hardbody, The Other Place), Bruce Cromer (An Iliad) and Brian Isaac Phillips (Outside Mullingar). Some of Mr. Phillips’ favorite collegiate credits include The Crucible (Rev. Hale; co-production with Cincinnati Shakespeare Co.), From White Plains (Gregory), Avenue Q (Princeton), and The Taming of the Shrew (Lucentio).

Natalie Joyce Smith (Lourdes) last appeared at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati in Love and Information as part of the 2015 Fringe Festival. Ms. Smith is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University School of Theatre. She was a proud member of the 2014-2015 Intern Company for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati, where she understudied roles in Hands on a Hardbody and An Iliad. Some of her favorite roles include Georgie in Theresa Rebeck’s Spike Heels and Maria in The Sound of Music.

Brent Vimtrup (Cliff) makes his Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati debut. His artistic home is with the resident ensemble at the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company where he has played a slew of amazing roles including John Proctor in The Crucible (League of Cincinnati Theatre Award for Best Actor), and title roles in Hamlet and Richard II. Selected additional credits include The Lieutenant of Inishmore at Syracuse Stage, The Voysey Inheritance at Milwaukee Rep, and Sight Unseen at InProximity Theatre, for which he was a nominated for a 2011 New York Innovate Theatre Award for Best Actor in a Featured Role.

Kate Wilford (Cindy) was seen last seen at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati in Hands On A Hardbody and Sleeping Beauty. Her other past Ensemble favorites are Becky’s New Car, Good People, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, The Women of Lockerbie, as well as the world premieres of the musicals Snow White, Don’t Make Me Pull This Show Over, and Joe McDonough’s drama Wayfarer’s Rest. Elsewhere, she won Acclaim and CEA awards as best actress for her performance in Death of a Salesman. Other award-winning performances include When The Rain Stops Falling at Know Theatre of Cincinnati and Don’t Make Me Pull This Show Over Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati. She has appeared at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company in Romeo And Juliet, The Cherry Orchard, All My Sons, and Bedroom Farce. Regionally, she has also worked at The Lyceum Theatre, Beef N Boards, Westgate Theatre, The Kenley Players, and was a founding member of The Troupe, here in Cincinnati, as well as directed at Xavier University, Thomas More College, and for three years at Cincinnati Children’s Theatre

Production team includes Brian c. Mehring (Resident Scenic & Lighting Designer), Jack Murphy (Technical Director), Matthew Hollstegge (Production Manager & Master Electrician), Shannon Rae Lutz (Properties Master & Design Assistant), Matt Callahan (Sound Designer), and Reba Senske (Costume Designer). Production Stage Manager is Brandon T. Holmes.

Performance Information
Performances run Tuesday through Sunday. Tuesday-Thursday, 7:30 pm; Friday and Saturday, 8:00 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 2:00 pm; and Sunday, 7:00 pm. A complete calendar of performances is available online at www.ensemblecincinnati.org.

Ticket Prices
Ticket prices range from $28 to $44 for adults; student tickets are $25; and children are $18. For the 2015-2016 season, ETC continues its popular $15 student and half-price rush tickets for all performances, which are available two hours prior to show time and may be purchased by phone or in person at the box office.

Available Discounts
Military, Educator, Public Radio Perks Card, ArtsWave FunCard, AAA, Senior, and Enjoy the Arts discounts available; tickets and seating are subject to availability.

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Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati is supported, in part, by the generosity of community contributions to the ArtsWave Campaign.

The Ohio Arts Council helps fund Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

2015-2016 Season Presenting Sponsor is the Otto M. Budig Family Foundation. Additional support provided by Garfield Suites Hotel, the Shubert Foundation, and PNC.

Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati is a professional theatre dedicated to producing world and regional premieres of works that often explore compelling social issues. We fulfill our mission through our stage productions and educational outreach programs that enlighten, enliven, enrich and inspire our audiences.

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