A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of the Great Lakes

January 12 - February 7, 2015

New Georges in association with Women’s Project Theater

by Kate Benson
directed by Lee Sunday Evans


New York Times Critics Pick

4 Stars Time Out New York- Bright Half Life CRITICS’ PICKTime Out New York

HIGHBROW & BRILLIANT” – New York Magazine

For those of you just tuning in, Thanksgiving is already in progress here at Wembly kitchen. The stands are nice and full; it’s quite a crowd that’s gathered. They’re in for a real treat.

“Ms. Benson, the playwright, is fearless and remarkably assured in this dizzyingly entertaining work. The direction of Ms. Evans unfurls with wit and verve, conjuring the story — the preparation and serving of a gigantic family dinner — without so much as a salad plate in sight.”  – The New York Times


Join the conversation on Twitter @WomensProject #GreatLakes

Kate Benson

(Playwright/Narrator) Kate Benson is a writer and actor living in Brooklyn. Plays include: [PORTO] (The Bushwick Starr), A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of the Great Lakes (Obie winner), (New Georges with the Women’s Project Theater), Super Magic Wild Forest (Clubbed Thumb Biennial Commission), and Desert (for Now). She has an MFA from the Brooklyn College Playwriting program.  Performances include: I’ll Never Love Again (Bushwick Starr), Tiger, Tiger (on the Nature of Violence) (Dixon Place), Fondly, Collette Richland (Elevator Repair Service at NYTW), Nomads (the Incubator), Good Person of Szechwan (the Public & LaMama), and home/sick (the Assembly).

Lee Sunday Evans

(Director) Lee Sunday Evans is a director and choreographer. Credits Include: Wellesley Girl by Brendan Pelsue at Humana/Actors Theater of Louisville, a workshop production of Miller, Mississippi by Boo Killebrew at Alley All New, D Deb Debbie Deborah by Jerry Lieblich at Clubbed Thumb; A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks… by Kate Benson at New Georges/Women’s Project Theater (OBIE Award), The Play About My Dad by Boo Killebrew at 59E59 Theatres; God’s Ear by Jenny Schwartz at Juilliard; Family Play (1979 to Present) by CollaborationTown; and The Caucasian Chalk Circle by Bertolt Brecht with original music by Nicholas C. Williams. Additionally, her work has been presented/developed at Baryshnikov Arts Center, Sundance Institute Theater Program, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, CATCH, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center. She is currently developing new projects with Andy Bragen, Kate Benson and Matthew Paul Olmos among others. As the resident director for CollaborationTown, she is currently developing a new musical as part of New Victory’s LabWorks, and working on a commission from LCT3. Upcoming: Macbeth at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival.

Jessica Almasy

(Everywoman) Jessica Almasy is a co-founder of the TEAM and a member of the wook taut majesty. She is an actress and a writer. BFA Acting: NYU Tisch. MFA Playwriting: Brooklyn College.

Gerry Bamman

(GrandDada) Gerry Bamman received Obie and Drama League awards and a Drama Desk nomination for best featured actor for his performance as Richard Nixon in Nixon’s Nixon.  He was a founding member of the Manhattan Project, one of the foremost experimental theater companies of the 1970’s, directed by Andre Gregory. His most recent work includes Keen Company’s The Film Society, Jen Silverman’s Phoebe in Winter and Merchant of Venice, and Enemy of the People on Broadway. Films: Runaway Jury, Two Family House, Passion of Mind, Home Alone 1 and 2, Lorenzo’s Oil, Secret of My Success, Bodyguard, True Believer, Pink Cadillac. Many appearances on Law and Order.

Christian Felix

(Everyman) Christian Felix is originally from Evanston, IL, which sits on the shores of the greatest of the Great Lakes. Past theater credits: Blacken the Bubble (Liberation Theater), The Two Lives of Napoleon Beazley (Vital Theater), Romeo and Juliet (Public Theater), Take Me Out (Barebones, Pittsburgh). Film credits: Sardines Out of a CanWaiting Room. TV: Guiding Light. BA: Dartmouth College. Thanks to my Family and Friends for their support!

Nina Hellman

(Trifle) New Georges: Great Lakes (Jam on Toast Fest). Off Broadway: Paris Commune (BAM – Civilians); The Internationalist (Vineyard – Lucille Lortel Nomination – featured actress); Trouble in Paradise (Hourglass – Obie Award); Curmudgeons in Love (EST Marathon); The Ladies, In The Footprint (The Civilians); Boozy, Heddatron (Les Freres); Once in a Lifetime (Atlantic). Regional: Huntington, South Coast Rep, Geva. Film/TV: Nurse Jackie (Season 7 – recurring), Wet Hot American Summer (Upcoming Netflix series – recurring), Role Models, The Ten, Wet Hot American Summer, Damages, Venture Brothers, L&O:CI. Wainy Days (web series). Affiliated artist: Civilians, Clubbed Thumb, Les Freres Corbusier.

Brooke Ishibashi

(Cheesecake) NY: Good Person of Szechwan (Public, La MaMa), Trade Practices (HERE), Help Me To Make It (CTown), Takarazuka!!! (Clubbed Thumb), Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G (Ma-Yi, Vampire Cowboys), Happy Sunshine Kung Fu Flower (Ars Nova, Zipper). Workshops/readings: Vineyard, La Jolla Playhouse, Lark, Lincoln Center, New Victory, Prelude, Clubbed Thumb, HERE, PEN World Voices, 2G, NAAP, Pan Asian, Music-Theatre Group, Leviathan Lab, Maltby & Shire’s Behind The Painting & BD Wong’s The Post Office. Concerts: Highline Ballroom, Joe’s Pub, City Winery. Brooke is developing an independent feature, a pilot treatment for TV, & a musical solo show. brookeishibashi.com

Mia Katigbak

(Snapdragon) Recently seen in NYTW’s Scenes from a Marriage. Other NYC: Public Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Foundry Theater, Civilians, Ma-Yi, Target Margin, New Georges, Clubbed Thumb, Women’s Project, Pan Asian Rep and NAATCO, of which she is Artistic Producing Director and co-founder. Regional: Berkeley Rep (CA), Swine Palace (LA), Guthrie (MN). International: Philippines, Abu Dhabi. Awards: Obie (NAATCO’s Awake and Sing!, 2014); Lucille Lortel, Lee Reynolds Awards (League of Professional Theatre Women); AEA’s Rosetta LeNoire Award; New Dramatists’ Charles Bowden Actor Award. Founding director, CAATA (Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists). BA: Barnard College. MA: Columbia University.

Kristine Haruna Lee

(Gumbo) Kristine Haruna Lee is a playwright, director, and performer living in Brooklyn, NY. She’s a founding member of harunalee theater company. She has performed nationally and internationally with artists such as Taylor Mac, NAATCO, Jim Neu, Yubiwa Hotel, Andrea Geyer’s Comrades of Time at the Whitney Biennial, Mettawee, and Antony and the Johnsons. Her work as part of harunalee has received a Dixon Place Artist Residency and Commission for War Lesbian, an LMCC Grant for Drunkfish Oceanrant, and she’s a recipient of the New Dramatists Van Lier fellowship. She teaches Theatre at York College. BFA: Tisch. MFA: Brooklyn College.

Hubert Point-Du Jour

(@ color commentary) Previously appeared in Nightlands with New Georges. A Fable (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), The Model Apartment (Primary Stages), A Map of Virtue (13P), Angels in America (Signature Theatre Company), The Tempest (Target Margin Theater), The Brother/Sister Plays (The Public Theater, u/s), The Gentleman Caller (Clubbed Thumb). Regional credits: The Two Gentleman of Verona (The Old Globe), A Raisin in the Sun, directed by Phylicia Rashad (Westport Country Playhouse), Romeo and Juliet (The Shakespeare Theatre Company), Blue Door (Seattle Repertory Theatre). TV credits: The Good Wife (CBS), happyish (Showtime), Law & Order and Law & Order: SVU (NBC), Over/Under (USA), Black Jack (Comedy Central). Film credits: James White and SWEEP (SAG short). Training: New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. YoungArts awardee.

Heather Alicia Simms

(Cherry Pie): Broadway: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom; A Raisin in the Sun; Gem of the Ocean, VSMS.  Other Theater: The Rattlestick, Soho Rep, The Public, Playwrights Horizons, McCarter, Berkeley Rep, Cincinnati Playhouse. TV: The Good Wife, Life Support, Law & Order, Law & Order: CI, Whoopi, Third Watch and Homicide.  Film: Red Hook Summer, Broken Flowers, The Nanny Diaries, You Belong to Me, Head of State.  Heather is the recipient of an Audie Award for the audiobook Upstate.  Fox Foundation Resident Actor Fellowship through TCG.  BA: Tufts University. MFA: Columbia University.  www.heatherasimms.com

Ben Williams

(# in charge of action) Ben Williams is an actor and a sound designer. With Elevator Repair Service: Arguendo; Fondly, Collette Richland; The Select (The Sun Also Rises); Shuffle, The Sound and the Fury (April Seventh, 1928); No Great Society; and Gatz. Other collaborators include: Julia Jarcho, Christina Masciotti, Sibyl Kempson, Suzanne Bocanegra, The Wooster Group, New York City Players, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Awards for Sound Design: 2012 Obie, 2012 Lucille Lortel, 2013 LADCC. Ben is the Editor of Performance Texts for BODY, an online literary journal, where you can read an excerpt from this play: www.bodyliterature.com.

Kathleen Doyle

(Costume Design) Kathleen Doyle designs costumes and puppets for theater, opera, dance and animation.  Recent projects include Sunfish – Daegu Opera House – South Korea, The Magic Flute – Boston Symphony Orchestra, Lollapalooza – Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Light Princess – American Repertory Theater, The Snow Queen – Here, Sassy Swings Tokyo – La MaMa, Gideon’s Knot – 59E59, Cendrillon -Manhattan School of Music, Fireweather – The Joyce Theater, Girl of The Golden West – New Ohio Theater. Doyle is the recipient of many awards and grants, including two Fulbrights. Her artwork was recently exhibited in a solo show called Criacoes in Brazil. MFA in Theatrical Design, NYU. www.kathleendoyledesign.info

Barbara Samuels

(Lighting Design) Select Designs Include: Seagull dir. Brian Mertes, co-designed with Dan Scully (The Lake Lucille Project); Various projects with Portia Krieger, Jess Chayes, Lee Sunday Evans, and Morgan Gould; Three Sisters Who Are Not Sisters dir. Richard Gammon (Manhattan School of Music, NYC); Grimly Handsome dir. Julia Jarcho (Incubator Arts Project, Obie Award); The Pits dir. Sarah Krohn and The Valley of Fear dir. Lila Neugebauer (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Previous Projects with New Georges: Great Lakes, The Vaults, Primal Play. Other: 13P General Manger emeritus. Education: Fordham University, BA; NYU Tisch, MFA.

Sara C. Walsh

(Scenic Design) Sara designed JAM on Toast for New Georges last year! Previous other designs include: Get Mad at Sin! with Andrew Dinwiddie and Jeff Larson (The Chocolate Factory, The San Diego Museum of Art), Confidence Man with the Woodshed Collective, Faye Driscoll’s You’re Me (The Kitchen, UCLA, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston), There Is So Much Mad in Me (Dance Theatre Workshop), and 837 Venice Blvd. (HERE Arts Center – Bessie Award Winner). She was Head of Design for Queen of the Night. This year Sara will be designing and performing in The Kioskers, a suitcase band show of astounding proportions. Written by Scott Adkins, directed by Meghan Finn with music by the sublime Alaina Ferris. Next up: Social Security by Christina Masciotti directed by Paul Lazar at the Bushwick Starr. www.saracwalsh.com

New Georges

New Georges, founded in 1992, is one of New York City’s premiere downtown theater companies, a home and a playground for some of the most adventurous theater artists (who are women) working today. New Georges supports the largest ongoing working community of women theater artists in New York City (made up of playwrights, directors, actors and designers) and has advanced the careers of more than 80 women playwrights and directors by providing them with productions, often their first in New York.  The adventurous, boundary-pushing aesthetic that makes “a New Georges play” is recognized nationwide.  www.newgeorges.org

  • A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of the Great Lakes: OBIE AWARDS Acceptance Speeches

  • A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of the Great Lakes Trailer