Betsy Graver, Boca Raton Theatre, Candace Caplin, Clay Cartland, comedy, Deborah Zoe Laufer, Ken Clement, Kim St. Leon, Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, Parade Productions, Studio Theatre, The Last Schwartz, theatre
Parade Productions to present
Deborah Zoe Laufer’s The Last Schwartz
January 31 – February 23, 2014
The Schwartz family is on its last legs. Their father is dead and their Catskills home is going up for sale. Norma Schwartz’ husband hasn’t spoken to her since she turned their 15 year old son in for smoking pot; it doesn’t seem like brother Herb’s wife will ever present him with an heir; middle sibling Simon has one foot on the moon; and youngest brother Gene arrives at the family compound with an unexpected guest. What unfolds is the funny, surprising, and ultimately moving story of a family at a key moment in their history.
Parade Productions will present Deborah Zoe Laufer’s The Last Schwartz from January 31st through February 23rd at the Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center’s Studio Theatre. The play received unanimously glowing reviews when it debuted at Florida Stage in 2002.
Director Kim St. Leon was immediately drawn to the piece. “We see a family’s history and future collide on one fateful weekend,” she says. “While we need to understand where we come from, we can’t let it hinder where we’re going. In The Last Schwartz some hold on to the past too tightly while others let go of it too freely. The machinations of families have always fascinated me and The Last Schwartz does that with laughter, charm, and poignancy.”
Ken Clement and Betsy Graver have already committed to the project, and casting for the rest of the roles is underway.
“I’m very excited that we’re doing The Last Schwartz,” says Parade Productions Executive Producer Candace Caplin. “It’s one of my all-time favorite plays. It has everything; it’s funny, it’s touching, it’s full of surprises; its characters are people we all know and deal with. It’s been top of my list for years.”
Playwright Deborah Zoe Laufer is a recipient of the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award and a Lilly Award. She is a graduate of The Juilliard School and a two-time recipient of the LeCompte du Nouy grant from The Lincoln Center Foundation. Her plays have been developed at Florida Stage, The Eugene O’Neill Playwrights Conference, Williamstown Theatre Festival, The Ojai Playwrights Conference, The Missoula Colony, The Cherry Lane Alternative, The Dramatists Guild Fellowship Program, New Georges, The Lark Play Development Center, and Geva Theatre Center. She has received a National New Play Network rolling premiere and commission. She is a member of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop as a lyricist and librettist.
Parade Productions is a not-for profit theatre company whose mission is “To produce high quality theatre experiences that entertain, enlighten, inform, uplift, and inspire audiences, sending them home with new thoughts, insights, questions, and ideas.”
The Last Schwartz will have one preview performance on January 30th, 2014. It will open on January 31st, and will run through February 23rd, with performances Thursday through Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays at 3 p.m. Ticket prices are $35 ($30 for groups of 20 or more).
Tickets will go on sale June 1st, and will be available at: www.paradeproductions.org, or by calling 866-811-4111. For Group Sales please call: 561-291-9678.
Critical praise for The Last Schwartz:
“. . . metaphysically profound . . . The Last Schwartz is rollicking, sad, shocking, goofy, and thoughtful. It is comic drama firing on all cylinders, a superb work of theater by a playwright in full command of her considerable gift for character and dialogue.” T.L. Ponick, The Washington Times
“Anyone who has lived in a family for even a minute will be able to identify with the wackiness and heartbreaks in The Last Schwartz.” Laufer creates “alternately funny and emotional dialogue.” Donna Hartman, Bradenton Herald
“The Last Schwartz balances comedy and drama. We ache for the Schwartz family members. We love them and hate them and laugh all the way to the family patriarch’s grave and beyond.” Alec Clayton, Tacoma News Tribune / The Olympian
The Last Schwartz
By Deborah Zoe Laufer
January 31-February 23, 2013
Preview: January 31, 2013
Thu-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 3 pm
The Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, Studio Theatre, 2nd Floor
201 Plaza Real
Boca Raton, FL 33432
Group Sales: 561-291-9678
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