MCC Theater Announces 2021-22 Season featuring Jocelyn Bioh, Van Hughes, Nick Blaemire, Ana Nogueira, and Donja R. Love
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 02:27 pm EDT 06/03/21



2021-22 SEASON







APRIL – MAY 2022


MAY – JUNE 2022





(June 3, 2021 – New York, NY) MCC Theater (Bob LuPone, Bernie Telsey, Will Cantler, Co-Artistic Directors; Blake West, Executive Director) announced today their 2021-2022 season.

MCC expects to kick off its return to in-person theater in October 2021 with Nollywood Dreams by Burnt Umber Playwright-in-Residence Jocelyn Bioh (School Girls; or, The African Mean Girls Play) and directed by Saheem Ali (Fires in The Mirror). In January 2022 MCC will present a full production of the previously announced Space Dogs, a new musical by Van Hughes (Burn All Night) and Nick Blaemire (Glory Days). Here She Is, Boys, by Ana Nogueira (Empathitrax) and directed by Mike Donahue (MCC's Collective Rage), will premiere in April 2022. The season will conclude in May 2022 with soft by Donja R. Love (one in two) and directed by Whitney White (What to Send Up When It Goes Down). MCC will also present Uncensored, an MCC Youth Company Production, in Spring of 2022.

Dates, casting, creative teams, and individual ticket on sales will be announced at a later date.

MCC will closely monitor and adhere to all local, state and federal guidelines for all in-person activity and will alter plans if it is deemed in the best interests of public health. MCC is committed to the health and safety of its staff, artists, production crews, students and audience members. The theater has expanded its safety initiatives by installing a Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization (NPBI) technology system, upgrading the HVAC system with MERV 14 & MERV 15 filters, placing standing HEPA filters throughout the building, as well doubling the facility deep cleaning schedule, and going contactless with digital ticket scanning and digital playbills, among other efforts.

Details for 2021/2022 Include:

Written by Burnt Umber Playwright-in-Residence Jocelyn Bioh
Directed by Saheem Ali
Newman Mills Theater
October – November 2021

It's the 1990s and in Lagos, Nigeria, the NOLLYWOOD film industry is exploding and taking the world by storm. Ayamma dreams of stardom while working at her parents' travel agency alongside her lovable and celebrity-obsessed sister Dede. When Ayamma lands an audition for a new film by Gbenga Ezie, Nigeria's hottest director, she comes head-to-head with Gbenga's former leading lady, Fayola. Tensions flare just as sparks start flying between Ayamma, the aspiring ingénue, and Wale, Nollywood's biggest heartthrob, in this hilarious new play about dreaming big.

Nollywood Dreams is supported by The Laurents/Hatcher Foundation, The Bonnie Cashin Costume Design Fund, and by public funds from The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the city council.

A new musical written and performed by Van Hughes and Nick Blaemire
Susan & Ronald Frankel Theater
January – February 2022

Space Dogs tells the heartbreaking, mind-blowing true story of Laika and the Chief Designer -- a stray dog and the top-secret Russian scientist who sent her to space during the Cold War. Written and performed by actor-musicians Van Hughes and Nick Blaemire, it is a sweeping, kaleidoscopic tale of invention, betrayal, international political intrigue, and the immortal friendship that exists between man and dog, as they journey together to the stars.
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Space Dogs is supported by the Gary Platt Initiative for New Musicals, Nicole and Stephen Eisenberg, the Burton A. Zipser and Sandra D. Zipser Foundation, and public funds from The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the city council. Space Dogs was developed in MCC's SongLabs with leadership support provided by Jill Furman.

By Ana Nogueira
Directed by Mike Donahue
Newman Mills Theater
April – May 2022

The year is 2015 and Jeff and Judy are right where they're supposed to be: waiting outside the stage door of If/Then to get an autograph from the star. But the conversation they have while they wait will change the course of their decades-long friendship forever. Warning: Beware of Tourists.

Here She Is, Boys is supported by public funds from The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the city council.

By Donja R. Love
Directed by Whitney White
Susan & Ronald Frankel Theater
May – June 2022

Flowers are magically in bloom—in Mr. Isaiah's classroom, in the halls of the correctional boarding school where he teaches, and in the depths of his students' imaginations. After one boy dies by suicide, Mr. Isaiah struggles to figure out how to save the Black and Brown boys he teaches from a world that tries to crush their softness.

soft is supported by The R&S Shulman Fund at MCC Theater, and by public funds from The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the city council.

An MCC Youth Company Production
Spring 2022

An annual highlight of the MCC calendar, the 21st Edition of Uncensored will feature New York City teens taking over MCC's main stage to speak their truth. MCC Youth Company's Performance Lab and Brooklyn Youth Company branches put on exhilarating shows with student-written monologues, scenes, music, and ensemble pieces. Uncensored is a celebration of young voices who speak to their experiences, hopes and dreams reflecting on today, while looking toward the future. Their words are emboldened with music and movement, resulting in a show that will bring you to your feet.

This program is supported by The Pinkerton Foundation, the Tiger Baron Foundation, and by public funds from The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the city council.

Priority subscriptions for MCC's 2021/22 season start at $212 (including all handling fees) and include all the productions plus unlimited free ticket exchanges, 20% off guest tickets, waived ticket fees, and first access to tickets. Memberships start at $67 (including all handling fees) and include all of the productions at a discounted rate of $45 per ticket, up to three free ticket exchanges per production, 10% off guest tickets, waived ticket fees, and access to tickets ahead of the general public. Subscriptions and memberships are available for purchase beginning today at mcctheater.org.

Subscriptions purchased between June 3 and 18 will receive an MCC Subscriber mug and an MCC mask. Memberships purchased between June 3 and 18 will receive an MCC mask. All gifts will be available for pick up during the first performance patrons are scheduled to attend.


MCC Theater is one of New York's leading nonprofit Off-Broadway companies, driven by a mission to provoke conversations that have never happened and otherwise never would. Founded in 1986 as a collective of artists leading peer-based classes to support their own development as actors, writers and directors, MCC is one of the only theaters in the country led continuously by its founders, Artistic Directors Bob LuPone, Bernie Telsey, and Will Cantler. MCC fulfills its mission through the production of world, American, and New York premiere plays and musicals that challenge artists and audiences to confront contemporary personal and social issues, and robust playwright development and education initiatives that foster the next generation of theater artists and students.

MCC Theater's celebrated productions include Aziza Barnes' BLKS; Jocelyn Bioh's School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play; Penelope Skinner's The Village Bike; Robert Askins' Hand to God (Broadway transfer; five 2015 Tony Award® nominations including Best Play); John Pollono's Small Engine Repair; Paul Downs Colaizzo's Really Really; Sharr White's The Other Place (Broadway transfer); Jeff Talbott's The Submission (Laurents/Hatcher Award); Neil LaBute's reasons to be pretty (Broadway transfer, three 2009 Tony Award® nominations, including Best Play), Some Girl(s), Fat Pig, The Mercy Seat, and All The Ways To Say I Love You; Michael Weller's Fifty Words; Alexi Kaye Campbell's The Pride; Bryony Lavery's Frozen (Broadway transfer; four 2004 Tony Award® nominations including Best Play, Tony Award® for Best Featured Actor); Tim Blake Nelson's The Grey Zone; Rebecca Gilman's The Glory of Living (2002 Pulitzer Prize finalist); Margaret Edson's Wit (1999 Pulitzer Prize); and the musicals The Wrong Man, Alice by Heart, Ride the Cyclone, Carrie, and Coraline. Many plays developed and produced by MCC have gone on to productions throughout the country and around the world.

Over the years MCC has worked with thousands of students through the innovative MCC Youth Company, school partnerships, and student matinee programs.

Executive Director Blake West joined the company in 2006. MCC opened the doors to its new home in Manhattan's Hell's Kitchen neighborhood, The Robert W. Wilson MCC Theater Space, on January 9, 2019, unifying the company's activities under one roof for the first time and expanding its producing, artist development, and education programming.


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JOCELYN BIOH (Playwright) is an award winning Ghanaian-American writer/performer from New York City. Her written works for theatre include: Nollywood Dreams (MCC Theater), GODDESS the musical which will have its world premiere at Berkeley Rep in 2022 and the multi award winning School Girls; Or The African Mean Girls Play which was originally produced at MCC Theater in 2017/2018 and has gone on to have over 20 regional productions. She is a former TOW playwriting fellow (2017) and has been commissioned by MTC, Atlantic Theater Co., Williamstown Theatre Festival and Second Stage.

SAHEEM ALI (Director) is a proud immigrant from Kenya, and currently serves as the Associate Artistic Director/ Resident Director of The Public Theater. His recent productions include Romeo Y Julieta and Richard Ii (The Public/WNYC), Shipwreck (Woolly Mammoth), Fires In The Mirror (Signature Theatre), The New Englanders (MTC), The Rolling Stone (Lincoln Center Theater), Passage (Soho Rep), Fireflies (Atlantic Theater Company), Dangerous House (Williamstown Theater Festival), Sugar In Our Wounds (MTC), Tartuffe (Playmakers Rep), Twelfth Night (The Public), Kill Move Paradise (National Black Theater), Nollywood Dreams (Cherry Lane) and The Booty Call (Inner Voices). Upcoming productions include Merry Wives at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, and the world premiere of the musical Goddess, which Saheem conceived and will direct for Berkeley Repertory Theatre. He is a Usual Suspect at New York Theater Workshop, a Sir John Gielgud SDCF Fellow and a Shubert Fellow.

VAN HUGHES (Playwright, Actor) is an actor, musician, and composer. Broadway: Deaf West's Spring Awakening, American Idiot, 9 to 5, and Hairspray. Off-Broadway: Whisper House (The Civilians), Son of a Gun (Beckett), Saved (Playwrights Horizons). Regional: Almost Famous (Old Globe), When We're Gone (Lyric Theatre), A Little More Alive (KC Rep, Barrington), Rocky Horror Picture Show (Bucks County). Film: Sex And The City: The Movie I & II, Rachel Getting Married. TV: "Royal Pains," "Law & Order: SVU," "One Life To Live." As a composer, Van scored the films Sequence Break and Space Clown and co-authored the musical Burn All Night (ART). B.A. in Theatre from Fordham University.

NICK BLAEMIRE (Playwright, Actor) is a writer and performer based in Brooklyn. At 23, Nick wrote the score to the Broadway one-night sensation Glory Days (book by James Gardiner), which was recorded by Ghostlight Records and has had over 50 productions around the world. He has since written the book, music and lyrics for five other original musicals: A Little More Alive (commissioned by Broadway Across America, produced at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Kansas City Rep and Barrington Stage); Soon (premiered at Signature Theatre, won the Stephen Sondheim Young Artist Citation); Fallout (with Kyle Jarrow), Edge of the World (with Ethan Slater) and Space Dogs (with Van Hughes). Nick has released three EPs of pop songs, all available on iTunes and Spotify. As an actor, he most recently completed the National Tour of Falsettos as Mendel, and was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for his performance as Jonathan Larson in the Off-Broadway Revival of Tick, Tick...Boom!. He is repped by CAA, Artists & Representatives and Writ Large Management.

ANA NOGUEIRA (Playwright) is a writer and actress based out of Brooklyn. Here She Is, Boys was on the 2019 Kilroy's list and was chosen to be part of the Pacific Playwrights Festival at South Coast Rep. In 2016, her play Empathitrax received its world premiere production with the critically- acclaimed theater company Colt Coeur. Her work has been developed at South Coast Rep, Second Stage, The New Group, SPACE on Ryder Farm, Barrington Stage and Ensemble Studio Theater. She is a recipient of a Sloan Grant for playwriting, and the Elizabeth George Emerging Playwright commission. Ana co-wrote and starred in the short film We Win, which premiered at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival, and won Best Screenplay at the Rhode Island Film Festival. Acting credits include Engagements, Mala Hierba (both at Second Stage), Bump (Ensemble Studio Theatre), Knives and Other Sharp Objects (The Public, LAByrinth) and the Starz series "Hightown." She is a proud alumni of The Boston Conservatory of Music and the Obie Award-winning playwriting group Youngblood at Ensemble Studio Theater, and a member of Colt Coeur.

MIKE DONAHUE (Director). NYC credits include: world premieres of Matthew Lopez's The Legend Of Georgia McBride (MCC, The Geffen, Denver Center); Jen Silverman's Collective Rage (MCC, Woolly Mammoth), Phoebe In Winter (Clubbed Thumb); Jordan Seavey's Homos, Or Everyone In America (Labyrinth); and Ethan Lipton's Red-Handed Otter (Playwrights Realm). Regionally: Little Shop Of Horrors with MJ Rodriguez, George Salazar and Amber Riley (Pasadena Playhouse), and world premieres of Jen Silverman's The Roommate (Humana, Williamstown, Long Wharf); Rachel Bonds' Curve Of Departure (South Coast Rep, Studio Theatre), The Wolfe Twins (Studio Theatre); Kate Cortesi's Love (Marin); Matthew Lopez's Zoey's Perfect Wedding & Lauren Feldman's Grace, Or The Art Of Climbing (Denver Center); and Shostakovich's Moscow, Cheryomushi with a new libretto by Meg Miroshnik (Chicago Opera Theatre). Upcoming: Anne Carson's adaptation of Euripides The Bakkhai with new music by Diana Oh (Baltimore Center Stage) and the world premiere of Matt Schatz's A Wicked Soul In Cherry Hill (The Geffen).Top of FormBottom of Form

DONJA R. LOVE (Playwright, he/him) is Black, Queer, HIV-Positive, and thriving. A Philly native, he's the recipient of the Antonyo's inaugural Langston Hughes Award, the Helen Merrill Award, the Laurents/Hatcher Award and the Princess Grace Playwriting Award. Other honors include the Philadelphia Adult Grand Slam Poetry Champion. He's the co-founder of The Each-Other Project, an organization that helps build community and provide visibility, through art and advocacy, for LGBTQ People of Color. He's also the creator of Write It Out – a playwrights' program for writers living with HIV. Plays include soft (MCC), one in two (The New Group), Fireflies (Atlantic Theater Company), Sugar in Our Wounds (Manhattan Theatre Club, Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Nominations), and What Will Happen to All That Beauty?. He's a graduate of the Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program at The Juilliard School. IG/Twitter: @donjarlove

WHITNEY WHITE (Director) is an Obie Award and Lily Award-winning director, writer, and musician originally from Chicago. She is a believer of alternative forms of performance, multi-disciplinary work, and collaborative processes. Whitney is currently staffed on the Boots Riley series I'M A VIRGO for Amazon. Recent directing: The Amen Corner (Shakespeare Theatre Company), Our Dear Dead Drug Lord (WP Theatre and Second Stage, NYT Critic's Pick), Aleshea Harris' What to Send Up When it Goes Down (The Movement Theatre Company, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, American Repertory Theatre, The Public Theater, NYT Critic's Pick), An Iliad (Long Wharf). Digital projects include: What is Left Burns by James Ijames (Steppenwolf), Finish the Fight by Ming Peiffer (The New York Times), Animals by Stacy Osei-Kuffour (Williamstown and Audible). Her five-part cycle deconstructing Shakespeare's women and female ambition is currently in development with American Repertory Theater (Boston, MA). MFA Brown University. BA Northwestern University.
Link http://mcctheater.org

Next: DARKNIGHTS AND DAYDREAMS, adapted from Michael Uslan's 'The Boy Who Loved Batman,' aims for Broadway 2022 /2023 - Official_Press_Release 02:25 pm EDT 06/03/21

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