|Keen Co announces the first cast members for All-Star Benefit Broadcast of Orson Welles’s legendary War of the Worlds, to air Friday October 30th|
|Posted by: Official_Press_Release 11:39 am EDT 10/16/20|
|Drama Desk and Obie Award-Winning
Announces the First Cast Members for
All-Star Benefit Broadcast of
Orson Welles's Legendary
War of the Worlds,
by H.G. Wells, Adapted by Howard Koch
Cast to Be Led by Jason Tam (Be More Chill, KPOP), Who Will be Joined by Arnie Burton, Morgan Siobhan Green, and Khiry Walker, and More
Benefit Livestream To Air Friday October 30th at 8pm
Keen Company's 2020-'21 Season will feature a series of all-star benefit broadcasts, beginning with Howard Koch's legendary adaptation of War of the Worlds made popular by Orson Welles followed by Sorry, Wrong Number by Lucille Fletcher, which was once called "the greatest single radio script ever written."
Each one-night only event will feature a starry cast performing the audio piece live, and include a talkback after the show with artists. Tickets to these fundraiser events will support Keen Company's Hear/Now audio theater season, as well as our Keen Playwrights Lab for mid-career writers and Keen Teens which serves students in all five boroughs of NYC. Tickets are only $25 and are available on at broadwayondemand.com.
Today Keen Company Artistic Director Jonathan Silverstein announced some of the cast for War of the Worlds, led by Jason Tam, who will be joined by Arnie Burton, Morgan Siobhan Green, and Khiry Walker, with more to be announced shortly. War of the Worlds will have original music by Paul Brill.
"Since the early days of the pandemic, I became increasingly obsessed with old time radio and the ways these early pioneers provoked their audience to use their imagination in new ways. One of the greatest of these programs is Orson Welles's War of the Worlds, which skillfully used 'fake news' to create real life panic on October 30, 1938. 82 years later, I am thrilled to be collaborating with a wonderful group of talented and generous Keen friends to create an all new audio version of this famous broadcast. I look forward to sharing this one of a kind revival, which will not only entertain, but also bring to light some eerily similar themes between its original broadcast and today," said Mr. Silverstein.
This one-night only benefit performance of Howard Koch's adaptation of H.G. Wells' classic novel was made infamous during its original broadcast, sounding so realistic it incited mass hysteria across America and elevated "fake news" to an art form. Listen as a news station reports sinister machines and mysterious creatures making their way towards New York City, during Keen's starry live performance of one of the most famous radio plays in history on the night before Halloween. Orson Welles's legendary production originally aired on October 30, 1938 as part of The Mercury Theater on the Air and was similarly the product of NYC theater company learning to diversify.
Jason Tam was last seen on TV in the hit NBC Live "Jesus Christ Superstar" as Peter. Most recently on Broadway he was in the cult hit Be More Chill, and Off-Broadway in the immersive show KPOP for which he won the Lortel Award, and Keen Company's Marry Me A Little. Jason's Broadway credits include If/Then, Lysistrata Jones, and the original Paul in the revival of A Chorus Line. He has also been part of numerous Off-Broadway and regional theatre productions. Jason has been a regular on "One Life to Live" and "Beyond the Break" and can be seen in the documentary Every Little Step.
Arnie Burton's Broadway credits include Machinal, Peter and the Starcatcher, The 39 Steps, The New Yorkers (Encores!), A Free Man of Color, Amadeus. Off-Broadway credits include The Government Inspector (Red Bull Theater); Mystery of Irma Vep (Drama League Nomination); Talespin!;, Lives of the Saints; The Tempamentals (Drama Desk Award, outstanding ensemble); Peter and the Starcatcher (NYTW); The Merchant of Venice/The Jew of Malta (TFANA); Mere Mortals (Primary Stages and commercial run); The Last Sunday in June (Rattlestick and commercial run); The Venetian Twins, The Cherry Orchard (Pearl Theatre) UK: The Merchant of Venice (RSC, Stratford).
Morgan Siobhan Green's credits include: Broadway: Be More Chill. Off-Broadway: Folk Wandering, ARTNYC; Sweetee, Signature; Missed Connections, New Ohio. Regional: Moby-Dick, A.R.T.; Between The Lines, Kansas City Rep. Education/?Training: BS, Bradley University; MA, Long Island University.
Khiry Walker's Off-Broadway credits include Blues for an Alabama Sky (Keen Company), Much Ado About Nothing (Public Theater), Measure for Measure, Drunk Shakespeare, Three Musketeers (CTH), 3/Fifths (3LD). Training: BFA from SUNY Purchase. @khirywalker
Keen Company is an award-winning Off-Broadway theater creating story-driven work that provokes identification, reflection, and emotional connection. In intimate productions of plays and musicals, the company tells stories about the decisive moments that change us. Keen also runs a developmental new work initiative for mid-career playwrights and a unique educational outreach program for teens in all five boroughs of NYC.
As part of Keen Company's 21st Season, the company will be producing a year of audio theater. Hear/Now welcomes patrons into a theater of their imagination now through June 2021, featuring the world premiere of five new audio plays by Pearl Cleage, Kate Cortesi, finkle, James Anthony Tyler, and musical team Melissa Li and Kit Yan. All new audio plays will be released completely free for patrons on Keen Company's website as well as through popular podcast platforms. For early access and exclusive perks, support Keen Company by joining as a season member. Membership levels start at just $1 a month and bonus content, including talkbacks with playwrights and artists, panels with experts, behind the scenes interviews, digital programs, opening night premiere parties, and more. Look for Hear/Now on your podcast app and learn more about membership packages at www.keencompany.org.
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