Critic Howard Miller names Kentucky Cantata as one of the top plays of 2015 on Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway!
Listed with Arthur Miller, Annie Baker, Naomi Wallace, Stephen Karam, Amiri Baraka, et al.

"Off Broadway and Off Off Broadway productions often present some of the most creative, risk-taking, and compelling work in any theatrical season. Of the 120 shows I saw in the world of Off and Off Off since the start of 2015, I’ve identified a baker’s dozen that stood out among the pack."

"Kentucky Cantata. Paul David Young’s devastating play about a family tragedy, a blend of naturalism and a fourth-wall-breaching expressionistic design, was given a stellar production at HERE Arts Center under the direction of Kathy Gail MacGowan. Its stars, Dan Patrick Brady and Marta Reiman, were particularly effective as a married couple whose lives are stretched to the breaking point."

-- Howard Miller, Upstage-Downstage

Upstage-Downstage

Kentucky Cantata Jan. 19 to Feb. 8, 2015 at HERE, N.Y.C.

New York Innovative Theatre Awards nomination announcements, 20 July, 2015. Tony Naumovski for Outstanding Actor in a Feature Role.

New York Innovative Theatre Awards nomination announcements, 20 July, 2015. Tony Naumovski for Outstanding Actor in a Feature Role.
Tony Naumovski is nominated for New York Innovative Theatre Awards Outstanding Actor in a Featured Role for Kentucky Cantata!!! Tony is one of only seven actors nominated out of the hundreds of shows and actors in the past year.

"Kentucky Cantata is a masterful work that is likely to stay with you for a long time after the final bows."
"devastating"
"Kentucky Cantata is a brilliantly-composed play in which the metaphorical fourth wall separating the actors from the audience is raised and lowered at various times, so that the effect is one of alternately looking through the two ends of a telescope. Some of the story is deliberately distancing, with an expressionistic tone and narrated directly to the audience. At other times — especially in the scenes between Larry and Dora (exceptionally well acted by Mr. Brady and Ms. Reiman) — the play takes on a naturalistic tenor. Collectively, the two styles engage the heart and the mind throughout."
-- Howard miller, talkinbroadway.com

http://www.talkinbroadway.com/ob/1_24_15.html

"A dark, poetic play"

"The play is directed with nuanced details by Kathy Gail MacGowan, with movement consultation by Kristin Swiat."

"Guitarist Chris Funke performs gracefully and with subtle charm"

"As Carolyn, Hayley Treider performs well"

"Tony Naumovski does a great job"

"Playwright Paul David Young's poetic writing moves comfortably between the psychological world of the characters (where a character speaks directly to the audience) and the traditional dialogue between a pair of actors at a specific time and place."

Angel Lam, Theater Is Easy

http://www.theasy.com/Reviews/2015/K/kentuckycantata.php
“And then there’s Kentucky Cantata, at Here Arts Center, which tells the story of a young actress from rural Kentucky who moves to NYC and is raped in a parking lot. Written by Paul David Young, whose ingenious play In the Summer Pavilion greatly impressed me Off-Broadway in 2012, Kentucky Cantata will feature onstage musicians and a nonstop musical score interacting with the actors, hoping to combine music and language in new ways.”
— Erik Haagensen, Bwaytunes.com

http://www.bwaytunes.com/node/816887

Kentucky Cantata Jan. 19 to Feb. 8, 2015 at HERE, N.Y.C.


ARTISTIC AND CREATIVE TEAM

CREATIVE:

PAUL DAVID YOUNG

Paul David Young’s (Writer) play, In the Summer Pavilion, was produced to critical acclaim in the 2011 FringeNYC and at 59e59 Theaters in New York in 2012. The Village Voice hailed his 2013 Fringe hit Clown Play as “completely unconventional” and “intelligently bizarre.” He won the Kennedy Center’s Paula Vogel Playwriting Award and was a finalist for the Kendeda Fellowship. His work has been performed at MoMA PS1, Marlborough Gallery, the Living Theatre, apexart, The Brick, LMAK Projects, Lion Theatre, Kraine Theater, Chain Theatre and Red Room, and at the Kaffileikhusid in Reykjavik. His plays have been developed at Primary Stages, New York Theater Workshop, Alliance Theater of Atlanta, and the Kennedy Center. He is a Contributing Editor at PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art (MIT Press) and writes for Art in America and Hyperallergic. His translations, with Carl Weber, of Heiner Müller’s Anatomy Titus Fall of Rome and Macbeth were published in 2012 under the title Heiner Müller: After Shakespeare. His book newARTtheatre: Evolutions of the Performance Aesthetic was published by PAJ in 2014. He is a graduate of Yale University (Phi Beta Kappa), Columbia Law School (Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar), and the New School for Drama (MFA Playwriting) and was a Fulbright Scholar in Germany. New York Live Arts (formerly Dance Theater Workshop) selected him, along with Jess Barbagallo, to write Context Notes for the 2014-15 season. Lower Manhattan Cultural Council awarded him a five-month Process Space residency on Governors Island for 2015. He was born and raised in Paducah, Kentucky. www.pauldavidyoung.com.

KATHY GAIL MACGOWAN

Kathy Gail MacGowan (Director): Kathy has assiduously focused on both the development and the direction of new work. She has received many accolades for her direction, most recently for "Broad Channel" by James Bosely with the UP Theater Company: "One of the finest pieces of theater I've seen...directed like a master" (nytheater now). She is thrilled to be collaborating once again with Paul after successfully directing the premiere of "In The Summer Pavilion" at the New York International Fringe Festival (Backstage Critic's Pick, Village Voice and Daily News- Highlights) and its move to Off Broadway @ 59E59th Street Theaters (NY Times: "Careful Direction"). Other recent work: the critically acclaimed "The Golden Year" by Daniel Damiano @ The WorkShop Theater: "direction skilled and razor-sharp (nytheatre.com) "The Lover" by Harold Pinter and "Eden" by Eugene O'Brien @ Abingdon, "The Shape of Things" by Neil LaBute @ The Cell. Guest direction: Stella Adler Conservatory and NYU Company Shows: including "Glengarry Glen Ross", "Vinegar Tom", and "Necessary Targets". Festival Work and Winners: "The Enlightment of Mrs. Cartwell" by Daniel Damiano and "Crossing Borders" by Pat Montley Estrogenius (MTS), "Seal Songs" by Jennifer Fell Hayes (OOBR Final Forty and MITF Outstanding Award nominee), "Gifted Child" by Eddie Antar (Best Director, Nominee), "HR" by Eric Coble and "The Fatwa of Johnny Jones" by Greg Bodine (Samuel French Final Forty). She was delighted to direct a reading this Fall of "Meet the Earth" at the Drama Bookstore starring Austin Pendleton. MFA, 2009, 2010 Drama League Directing Finalist, 2009/2013 SDC Observership Finalist. www.kathygailmacgowan.com


ASHLEÉ MILLER

American clarinetist Ashleé Miller (music composition and clarinet) has been praised for her rich “color and imagination” [NPR]. Winner of the 2005 North Carolina Soloist competition, Ashleé made her solo debut at the age of sixteen with the North Carolina Symphony on their opening tour. She was the first clarinetist to receive the Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist award, which included a $10,000 career grant, a performance on NPR’s “From the Top,” and a community art project sponsored by NPR. Ashleé was a featured performer in the Young Musician’s Forum recital series and has appeared as a guest artist with the Elysium Ensemble and Alaria Trio at Carnegie Hall. She is the former principal of the New York Youth Symphony and member of the Mannes Orchestra. She has published numerous program notes in the Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully PLAYBILL for the Mannes Orchestra. Ashleé has held fellowships at the Bowdoin International Music festival and Sarasota Music Festival, and is an alumna of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. She received her high school diploma from the University of the North Carolina School of the Arts and was awarded her Bachelor and Master Degrees from Mannes College of Music, graduating as student speaker, winning honors and the Lotte Pulvermacher-Egers Humanities Award. Ashleé currently holds a Doctoral fellowship and is a Doctoral of Musical Arts candidate at the CUNY Graduate Center where she studies with Charles Neidich. Ashleé teaches at Hunter College and the College of Staten Island.
KIA ROGERS

Kia Rogers (Lighting Design) - Off Broadway: Pressing Empty, Sistas The Musical, Made In Heaven, Passage through Light and Shadows. International credits: Associate Lighting Designer for Slutforart/98.6 in Gothenburg, Sweden with Muna Tseng. Tours: The God Box Project with Mary Lou Quinlan, Soledad Barrio & Noche Flamenca and Flamenco Vivo. Assistant credits include working with Justin Townsend, Thomas Dunn, and Nicole Pearce. She has been a creative partner with Flux Theatre Ensemble since 2012. Favorite OOB credits include Jane The Plain, The Gin Baby, In The Summer Pavilion, Ajax In Iraq, Hearts Like Fists, and Sans Merci. Kia received the NYIT award for Outstanding Lighting Design in 2014, and nytheatre.com voted her people of the year, 2012. She has been a supporter, lighting designer and the lighting director for Estrogenius since 2006. www.krogersld.com
FRANKLIN EVANS

FRANKLIN EVANS

Franklin Evans (Set Design) was born in Reno, Nevada. He has degrees from Stanford University, University of Iowa, and Columbia University. Since 2005, he has had sixteen solo exhibition in the United States and Europe and numerous group exhibitions at venues that include, among others: MoMA PS1, New York, NY; Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, NV; de Cordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA; DiverseWorks, Houston, TX; RISD Museum, Providence, RI; Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, NC; Futura, Prague, Czech Republic; El Museo del Barrio, New York, NY; The Drawing Center, New York, NY; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, CA; Federico Luger, Milan, Italy; Sue Scott, New York, NY; Ameringer McEnery Yohe ,New York, NY. He collaborated with Trajal Harrell on visual design for Twenty Looks or Paris Is Burning (M), which was performed at, among others: New Museum, New York, NY; The Kitchen, New York, NY; ICA, Boston, MA. His work has been featured and reviewed in The New York Times, Art in America, New York Magazine, Artforum, The New Yorker, Modern Painters, Brooklyn Rail, Art-Agenda, Artcritical, Hyperallergic, Flash Art International, among other publications. Awards and grants include: Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant; NYFA Fellowship (Painting); PM Foundation; Tribesice; Yaddo; The Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation Space Program; and LMCC. Evans work is included in the public collections of Orlando Museum of Art, Orlando, FL; El Museo del Barrio, New York; NY; Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, NC; Sweeney Art Gallery, University of California, Riverside, CA; Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH; The Progressive Art Collection, Cleveland, OH; Roanoke College, Salem, VA. www.franklinevans.com
SCOUT ISENSEE

Scout Isensee (Costume Design) is a recent graduate of London College of Fashion with a BA (Hons) in Costume for Performance, as well as an AAS in Fashion Design from Fashion Institute of Technology. Currently working in the wardrobe department on “Matilda” at the Shubert Theatre, she has also done work placements in the wardrobe departments of Cirque du Soleil’s “KOOZÅ”, “Singin’ in the Rain” in the West End, and Punchdrunk’s “Sleep No More.” She recently went to Belfast, Northern Ireland to be a costume trainee on the upcoming film High Rise (2015) directed by Ben Wheatley and starring Tom Hiddleston. She designed the costumes for Paul David Young’s “Clown Play” for the New York International Fringe Festival 2013 and was wardrobe supervisor on his film, In the Summer Pavilion. She is delighted to be working on his latest production, “Kentucky Cantata.” http://www.scoutisensee.com/

KRISTIN SWIAT

Kristin Swiat (Movement Consultant) studied dance at North Carolina School of the Arts and attended Juilliard, under the direction of Benjamin Harkarvy, where she danced in works by Ohad Naharin, Jiri Kylian, Margi Gillis, and Eve Gentry, and studied composition under Liz Kean, Pat Catterson,and Martha Clarke. After earning her BFA in 2003, Kristin spent several years in Europe working mainly as a collaborative performer with choreographer Prue Lang. In Brussels, she danced in Robert Wilson's production of Alceste at La Monnaie Opera House and also collaborated with Gaetan Faik (director/writer) on the presentation of La Jeune Fille aux Doights Doree, at Bruegel Cultural Center. A collaborative work with Natalie Thomas, A Junk Experiment, was presented at The Panacea Dance Festival in Stockholm in 2004. Upon returning to NY in 2008, Kristin began working as a collaborative performer with both Shannon Gillen and Guests in Clap for the Wolfman and Botlek, and with Michael Bodel in Dance and Other Archives, and To Ellis Island, a dance film based on interviews with and writings about her grandmother's immigration to the US from Poland. In 2012, Kristin took part in Bard's Summerscape Opera production of The King Despite Himself directed by Thaddeus Stassberger and choreographed by Marjorie Folkman, and she began working with Jen Harmon as a collaborative performer on The Beginning Of Something which was performed at Dixon Place and AUNTS in NYC. She took part in the 2013 production for Rick Moody entitled When I left the house it was still dark, produced by the Brooklyn Beat Festival. In 2014, she worked on the artistic team of Odyssey Works again to create a performance for Jen Harmon and began a collaboration with Jessica Myers. In September, Kristin performed as an actor/dancer in The Future of Story Telling Summit at Snug Harbor with the art-tech corporation Fake Love. At Danaka Dance, she worked as a collaborative performer with choreographer Dana Katz on the creation of Thousand Plateaus, performed at The Irondale Theater. Kristin's creative work has also been presented in New York as part of Theater Lab's Estro Genius Festival with the collective Women In Motion, as a part of Waxworks at Triskellion Arts, at Bushwick Open Studios, The Green Room Salon curated by Xandra Clark and Ayden LeRoux, The Home Audio Series curated by Mara Mayer, The Ready or Not Series at 100 Grand and with the Non-Profit Dance Organization LiveDanceLive.

CAST:
DAN PATRICK BRADY

Dan Patrick Brady * (Larry) has enjoyed decades as a professional actor Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway, and in Regional Theatre. His Off-Broadway credits include Richard in THE LOVER, Billy in EDEN, Vinnie in WOMEN AND FOOTBALL and Wesley in the original NYC revival of Sam Shepard’s CURSE OF THE STARVING CLASS. His Regional credits include Tom in THE GRAPES OF WRATH, Ray in BLACKBIRD, and John Merrick in THE ELEPHANT MAN. Part of his early career was spent working with playwright Romulus Linney on HEATHEN VALLEY, YANCEY, and LAUGHING STOCK. As a producer and actor, Dan brought back to New York the first revivals of the entire trilogy of THE NORMAN CONQUESTS and JOURNEY OF THE FIFTH HORSE, both critically acclaimed by the Village Voice. His TV credits include NBC’s “SHOOT FIRST: a Cop’s Vengeance,” ABC’s “All My Children” and “Loving,” and he can be seen on film in “Paradise Falls,” “My Demon Lover,” among others.
CHRIS FUNKE

Chris Funke (Guitar) began his career in guitar playing jazz and in musical theator productions in Buffalo, NY. He then went on to receive a bachelors in music performance at SUNY Buffalo, studying with Joanne Castellani and privately with Jason Vieaux. In 2010 and 2012 he received Masters and Professional Artist Diploma degrees from Mannes College under Michael Newman and Frederick Hand. Chris has performed across the country as both soloist and in ensembles, as well as in Granada, Spain for a festival of Spanish Song. In 2011 he performed in Shingo Fuji’s “Concierto de Toronto” with William Kanengeiser (Los Angeles Guitar Quartet) for the New York City Classical Guitar Society concert series. In 2012 he performed on guitar with the Amore Opera Company’s New York City production of Donizetti’s “Don Pasquale”. For six years Chris has maintained an active ensemble with Rebecca Kuehl and regularly performs for music series and festivals across the country. Past venues have included Americas Society NYC, New England Classical Guitar Society, Classical Guitar Society of Upstate New York, Bronxville Women’s Club Midland Music Series, Taos Chamber Music Group, Baruch Performing Arts Center with William Kanengiser, Bard College, Hidden Valley Music Seminars, Essex-on-Lake-Champlain Community Music Series and Salon 74 in NYC. He also plays in two other groups doing Celtic music, classic rock, pop and original songs. He is currently teaching at the Mozartina Musical Arts Conservatory as well as privately while studying Alexander Technique at ATNYC, and occasionally accompanies instrumentalists and vocalists from area colleges and universities (NYU, Princeton, Mannes College).
REBECCA KUEHL

Rebecca Kuehl (Flute) received her Bachelor of Music in Flute Performance at the University of Minnesota with Immanuel Davis and her Master of Music and Performance Artist Diploma in Flute Performance at Mannes College with Keith Underwood. Ms. Kuehl has performed as Principal Flute with the Mannes Orchestra in prestigious venues, including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fischer Hall, and Alice Tully Hall. In addition to performing flute, Rebecca is a teacher of the Alexander Technique and received her training from ATNYC with John Nicholls. She teaches both flute and Alexander Technique at the Mozartina Musical Arts Conservatory in Tarrytown, New York. Rebecca is also an instructor of flute and Alexander Technique at the Bard Conservatory Preparatory Summer Program. Rebecca maintains an extensive concert schedule across the country with her flute-guitar ensemble DuoEssence.
TONY NAUMOVSKI

Tony Naumovski* (Kareem) - NY based classically trained actor. He has appeared in over 100 Theater, Film and TV productions internationally to critical and commercial acclaim. Selected credits. Film: RUN ALL NIGHT (With Liam Nesson and Ed Harris - upcoming premiere 2015); The Award Winning WHAT ABOUT US? (Produced by Jasmine Guy); the award winning US A LOVE STORY directed by 2011 Sundance Winner Alrick Brown; THIS IS NOT AN AMERICAN MOVIE (Europe) etc. TV: BLUFF; PERSON OF INTEREST; ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK; LAW & ORDER:SVU; THE WORLD'S ASTONISHING NEWS (Japanese National TV); etc. Theater: Oberschaarfuhrer Dietz in THE DIAMOND EATER (Tazewell Thompson/HERE, OUTSTANDING ACTOR IN A FATURED ROLE Nomination NYITA) Stalin in FINAL ANALYSIS (Ludovica Villar Hauser/Signature Theater), A in LISSABON (Hristo Hristov/LaMaMa) Jocasta in OEDIPUS REX XX/XY (Mark Greenfield/LaMaMa E.T.C); Karpovsky in BEST OF THEATERWORKS (Tamilla Woodard/Working Theater); Jason in MEDEA (Gia Forakis/GF&CO); Bugsy Brodsky in Tennessee Williams' SOMETHING CLOUDY, SOMETHING CLEAR (Cosmin Chivu); KGB Leader Laverenti in the US Premire of PURGE (Zishan Ugurlu/LaMaMa E.T.C); Cengiz Pasha the leader of Crete in the World Premiere of THREE GRACES (Marcy Arlin/ Ice Factory Festival); Hamlet in THE OPHELIA LANDSCAPE (Naum Panovski/Mark Morris); Odysseus in THE ODYSSEY (Jake Witlen/The Internationalists); Urosh in WAXING WEST (Benjamin Mosse/LaMaMa E.T.C) etc. Tony is a company member of Gia Forakis and Company, an Artistic Associate of Poiesis Theatre Project and a member of Visigoth Picture. Tony is fluent in four languages. He is also a singer, a drummer, a Martial artist. UPCOMING: In November 2014, Tony will be seen in the role of O.Rex produced by GF & CO at Triad Theater Stage 72.. http://www.tonynaumovskirotino.com/


MARTA REIMAN

Marta Reiman* (Dora): New York Credits include: The Cherry Lane Theatre: Box Office Poison; The Workshop Theater Co.: The Jazz Age, as Zelda Fitzgerald; Manhattan Theatre Source: The Chekhov Dreams; The Actor’s Studio Miss Golden Dreams, as Marilyn Monroe; Bill’s Nineties: Courting Mae West, as Mae West. Regional Theatre: the Fulton Theatre Co: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Arizona Theatre Co: The Great Gatsby; Caldwell Theatre Co: Dangerous, The Voysey Inheritance, The Paper Mill Playhouse: Summer and Smoke; Hartford Stage Co: The Night of the Iguana; A Christmas Carol-A Ghost Story of Christmas; Dorset Theatre Festival: Tom Jones; The Electric Theatre Co. The Dinging Room. Marta has also appeared on TV in such shows as The Good Wife, All My Children and One Life to Live and in various independent films, music videos, and commercials. Marta received her BFA from The University of Hartford, The Hartt School. Marta is a proud member of AEA and SAG- AFTRA.
HAYLEY TREIDER

Hayley Treider* (Carolyn): New York: Double Falsehood (CSC), Best of Everything (HERE), Adventures of Tom Sawyer (New Victory), Bakken Formations (Ars Nova ANT Fest). Regional: Westport Country Playhouse, Two River, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Bard SummerScape, Roanoke Island Festival Park. TV: Orange Is the New Black, Law & Order: SVU, Person of Interest, The Drama Dept. Fellow of Leonore Annenberg Fellowship Fund for the Performing and Visual Arts. Proud graduate with BFA from UNCSA and member of Actors Equity. Hayley is also a playwright and songwriter. Her play DAWN was recently featured at the Emerging Artists Theatre's New Works Series. www.hayleytreider.com


BETHANY CLARK

Bethany Clark* (Stage Manager) is a freelance stage manager and a graduate of the Design Technology program at SUNY Purchase College. Stage management has always been her passion, and she is overjoyed to be working on her third production with Paul David Young. Recent credits include Play/Date by 3-Legged Dog, The Untiltled Tina Landau Project at Classic Stage Company (Props Artist), Il Viaggio a Reims and Il Postino at the New School of Music, Clown Play at the 2013 NYC Fringe Festival, City Center's 2013 Fall for Dance Festival, and In The Summer Pavilion at 59 E 59th Street. Special thanks to the Purchase alumni, and Kathy MacGowan.

* by the names of the actors indicates that they are all members of Actors Equity Association. Kentucky Cantata is being presented as an Actors Equity Showcase.

Actors Equity Association

PHOTO CREDIT FOR MAIN WEB SITE IMAGE AND SHOW IMAGE: "Parking lot in Woodside, Queens, New York," © Joseph Kranak, March 29, 2007. (Altered and used by permission: Flickr Creative Commons 2.0)

TALKBACKS and RELATED EVENTS
RE:GENDER and LEGAL MOMENTUM:
TWO TALKBACKS ON RAPE AND VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
Thursday, January 29, and Tuesday, February 3

Our fiscal sponsor Re:Gender, along with Legal Momentum, hosted two talkbacks during our run. After the performances on Thursday, January 29, and Tuesday, February 3, Re:Gender and Legal Momentum led a public discussion immediately in the theater immediately after the end of the performance. These two leading advocacy organizations addressed rape and violence against women, using the play as a springboard for the discussion.

COMPOSER ASHLÉE MILLER (Sunday, February 1) and VISUAL ARTIST FRANKLIN EVANS (Sunday, January 25):
TWO TALKBACKS ON COLLABORATION

Franklin Evans: Visual Art and the Stage, after the performance on January 25, 2015

Ashleé Miller: Musical Collaboration, after the performance on February 1, 2015

talkin' broadway talkinbroadway.com

Marta Reiman, seated, and Hayley Treider PHOTO: Sasha Karasev, karasevstudio.com

Kentucky Cantata

Theatre Review by Howard Miller

Imagine you are the parent of an 18-year-old daughter, a recent high school graduate eager to leave her home in rural Kentucky and head to New York City to study acting. She has talent, a dream, the promise of a sofa to sleep upon, and an appointment with the Stella Adler Studio. And what if you reluctantly let her go alone to that place about which you have nightmares? And what if your very worst nightmare comes to pass?

This is the premise of playwright Paul David Young’s devastating new play Kentucky Cantata, now at the HERE Arts Center. It is about a brutal rape committed by an undocumented immigrant, a cab driver who picks up the young woman, Carolyn (Hayley Treider), at the airport and takes her to a deserted parking lot off the highway.

The rape, which occurs early on in the 70-minute play, is not directly depicted, but we are given first-hand accounts of it from Carolyn and from the rapist, Kareem (Tony Naumovski), who says of himself, “I am the one you cannot hear or see, the dark water that envelopes you.” Kareem has his own sad tale to tell, but, really, he should not go looking for sympathy from the audience. For the rest of the play, our hearts are entirely with Carolyn and her parents, Larry (Dan Patrick Brady) and Dora (Marta Reiman).

Kentucky Cantata is a brilliantly-composed play in which the metaphorical fourth wall separating the actors from the audience is raised and lowered at various times, so that the effect is one of alternately looking through the two ends of a telescope. Some of the story is deliberately distancing, with an expressionistic tone and narrated directly to the audience. At other times — especially in the scenes between Larry and Dora (exceptionally well acted by Mr. Brady and Ms. Reiman) — the play takes on a naturalistic tenor. Collectively, the two styles engage the heart and the mind throughout.

The play is rich with both imagery and down-to-earth detail. The family is not vaguely from Kentucky, but specifically from Monkeys Eyebrow, Kentucky (a real place). The route the driver takes from the airport is named, as is the business where the parking lot is located. Any New Yorker who has taken that well-traveled route will have no trouble envisioning the locale. The relationship between Larry and Dora is explored as well, and we can see that their marriage is as complicated as any, but that their ties to one another are unbreakable, even in the wake of the shattering events that unfold after one of them convinces the other to allow Carolyn to make the trip.

The performances are supported by a trio of talented musicians: Chris Funke on guitar, Rebecca Kuehl on flute, and Ashleé Miller, who composed the moody score, on clarinet. The musicians remain onstage and walk among the actors throughout the well-crafted production, directed by Kathy Gail MacGowan. Kentucky Cantata is a masterful work that is likely to stay with you for a long time after the final bows.

Kentucky Cantata Through February 8 HERE,145 6th Avenue - Enter on Dominick St., One block south of Spring St. Tickets online and current Performance Schedule: www.here.org

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Theater is Easy theeasy.com
Kentucky Cantata

By Paul David Young; Directed by Kathy Gail MacGowan

Off Off Broadway, New Play
Runs through 2.8.15
HERE Arts Center, 145 6th Avenue

by Angel Lam on 1.27.15

Hayley Treider in Kentucky Cantata. Photo by Sasha Karasev, karasevstudio.com.

BOTTOM LINE: A dark, poetic play about a young woman's dream to become an actor in New York City colliding with a mentally troubled illegal immigrant taxi driver.

Kentucky Cantata is a fictional story about a young woman named Carolyn from Monkeys Eyebrow, Kentucky (this is a real city). Her mother Dora (performed by Marta Reiman) has been worried and warns Carolyn (Hayley Treider) not to make the trip to the dangerous city. Dora dreams of her daughter working in a steady, stable occupation in rural Kentucky, but Carolyn is determined to leave. With the support of her father Larry (performed by Dan Patrick Brady), she sets out to New York City alone, not knowing that her life will soon come to a distressing halt.

The opening of the play describes a brutal rape scene, where the entire ensemble (including musicians) suggests the ominous event through body language, movements, and sounds. The scene sizzles with a disturbing sexual energy. Musicians intertwine between the actors, and the sounds/melodic lines punctuate the actors' speech. The score (performed by three musicians, composed by Ashleé Miller who also plays the clarinet) is sparse and hollow. Guitarist Chris Funke performs gracefully and with subtle charm in a scene interacting with Dora's sultry monologue.

The story unfolds non-chronologically, with a few long, bare monologues that depict detailed portraits of individual characters. Tony Naumovski does a great job with the difficult role of Kareem the taxi driver, a torn-hearted, lonesome visitor who is illegally staying in the country. As Carolyn, Hayley Treider performs well with choreographic movements as a young and distressed soul, moving between the physical world and the non-physical. Playwright Paul David Young's poetic writing moves comfortably between the psychological world of the characters (where a character speaks directly to the audience) and the traditional dialogue between a pair of actors at a specific time and place. The play is directed with nuanced details by Kathy Gail MacGowan, with movement consultation by Kristin Swiat and Marjorie Folkman.

(Kentucky Cantata plays at HERE Arts Center, 145 6th Avenue, through February 8, 2015. Performances are Tuesdays through Saturdays at 7PM and Sundays at 2PM. Tickets are $18 and are available at here.org or by calling 212.352.3101.)

http://www.theasy.com/Reviews/2015/K/kentuckycantata.php

“And then there’s Kentucky Cantata, at Here Arts Center, which tells the story of a young actress from rural Kentucky who moves to NYC and is raped in a parking lot. Written by Paul David Young, whose ingenious play In the Summer Pavilion greatly impressed me Off-Broadway in 2012, Kentucky Cantata will feature onstage musicians and a nonstop musical score interacting with the actors, hoping to combine music and language in new ways.”

— Erik Haagensen, Bwaytunes.com

— Erik Haagensen, Bwaytunes.com

For information about this upcoming production, visit our dedicated web site:

LINK to KENTUCKYCANTATA.COM