Tag Archives: Matthew Hancock

Fountain Theatre earns 4 NAACP Theatre Award nominations

I AND YOU star faces

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch in “I and You”.

The Fountain Theatre’s acclaimed 2015 productions of Lauren Gunderson’s I and You and Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine have earned four NAACP Theatre Award nominations for productions presented between January – December, 2015.

The NAACP Theatre Awards is presented by the Beverly Hills/Hollywood NAACP Branch in partnership with the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles City Council President/Councilmember District 10 Herb Wesson, Jr. and co-chaired by Byron K. Reed, Senior Vice President of Wells Fargo-West Region Community Relations, and Jeffrey Rush of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.

“We’re always pleased to be acknowledged by the NAACP theatre committee,” says Fountain Co-Artistic Director Stephen Sachs. “We have a long and successful history of supporting and presenting the work of a rich variety of artists on our stage. Diversity and inclusion is at the core of our artistic mission.”

CITIZEN Fountain Theatre in Memory 2

‘Citizen: An American Lyric’ at the Fountain Theatre

The mission of the NAACP Theatre Awards is to entertain, educate, and inspire the community and create diversity in the arts and entertainment industry. To honor LA theatre artists and celebrate live theatre in Los Angeles.

This year, the Fountain Theatre has received the following nominations:

  • Best Lead Male – Matthew Hancock, I and You
  • Best Choreography – Anastasia Coon, Citizen: An American Lyric
  • Best Lighting – Jeremy Pivnick, I and You
  • Best Set Design – Tom Buderwitz, I and You

The awards show will be held on Monday, November 21, 2016, at 6:00 p.m. at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills. More info.

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PHOTO SLIDESHOW: First reading of new play on passionate and iconic 1960’s dancer

4The upstairs rehearsal room at the Fountain last night was transported back to 1964 and Andy Warhol’s Factory with the first reading of the new play, Freddie, written by Fountain Co-Artistic Director Deborah Lawlor. Freddie tells the unforgettable true story of Frederick Herko, the young avant garde dancer who galvanized audiences and those who knew him in New York’s East Village during the turbulent 1960’s.

Herko 1964

Frederick Herko 1964

Continuing its commitment to developing new plays, the reading last night offered Lawlor and the Fountain team the opportunity to hear the script read aloud by actors for the very first time. Reading the new play last night were actors Kristin Carey, Faith D’Amato, John Dyer, Harry Farmer, Dennis Gersten, Matthew Hancock, Rob Nagle, Natalie Ochoa, Erin Reed, and Donna Simone Johnson. The reading was directed by Frances Loy.

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A dazzling storm of charisma, beauty and artistic passion, Herko was a brilliant 28 year-old dancer of extraordinary talent haunted by dark self-destructive demons. A fiery denizen of Andy Warhol’s Factory and the experimental scene in Greenwich Village, Herko became more eccentric, unpredictable and self-destructive. In 1964, while dancing in his apartment to Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Herko leapt out the window and fell to his death five stories down. Created by Deborah Lawlor, who was a close friend of Herko in the final year of his life, the project chronicles the blazing comet of the Icarus-like Freddie and the explosive creative energy of the 1960’s. By fusing theatre, music, and dance the project will capture the explosive spirit of a passionate artist and a turbulent era.

herko

Freddie Herko

The development of Freddie is supported, in part, by a grant from the national Endowment for the Arts. A workshop presentation of the new work will be presented this fall. 

Fountain Theatre earns 4 NAACP Theatre Award nominations for ‘The Brothers Size’

Trio 2

Gilbert Glenn Brown, Matthew Hancock, Theodore Perkins in ‘The Brothers Size’.

The Fountain Theatre’s acclaimed 2014 production of Tarell McCraney’s The Brothers Size has been nominated for 4 NAACP Theatre Awards. The Awards are presented annually by the Beverly Hills-Hollywood branch of the NAACP and are part of a four-day festival to honor outstanding people of color in theatre. 

“We are always pleased and proud to be recognised by the Beverly Hills/Hollywood NAACP theatre committee,” stated Fountain Co-Artistic Director Stephen Sachs. “It’s a continuing affirmation to our decades-long commitment to diversity on our stage.”

For this current Award cycle, the Theatre Viewing Committee considered productions from January to December of 2014.  The Fountain’s 2014 Los Angeles Premiere of The Brothers Size earned the following four nominations:
  • Best Playwright – Tarell Alvin McCraney
  • Best Director – Shirley Jo Finney
  • Best Choreography – Ameenah Kaplan
  • Best Ensemble Cast – Gilbert Glenn Brown, Matthew Hancock, Theodore Perkins 
“I am excited about combining the awards show and the festival because this platform will bring thespians and theatre lovers from across the country to the city of Los Angeles to enjoy the art that is theatre,” said Ron Hasson, president of the Beverly Hills/Hollywood NAACP. “The NAACP Theatre Awards Show represents an ever-growing theatre community in Los Angeles and we want to elevate this already highly recognized event in Los Angeles and heighten its visibility nationwide.”

Winners of the 25th Annual NAACP Theatre Awards will be announced on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at a press conference and reception at the Nate Holden Performing Arts Center. More Info

 

Fountain Theatre wins 17 StageSceneLA Awards including Top Intimate Theatre

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch in 'I And You'.

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch in ‘I And You’.

Editor Steven Stanley today announced his recipients of the 2014-15 StageSceneLA Theatre Awards. The Fountain Theatre was awarded 16 citations for its 2014-15 productions of I And You, Reborning and Broomstick.  Steven Stanley’s StageSceneLA.com has spotlighted the best in Southern California theater since 2007.

  • The Year’s Top 8 Intimate Theatres – Fountain Theatre
  • The Year’s Top 8 Productions, PLAY –  I And You 
  • Outstanding Drama (Intimate Theater)  Reborning
  • Outstanding Production, Solo Performance Broomstick
  • Ensemble Cast, Drama (Intimate Theatre) Reborning
  • Performance in a Play Jennifer Finch,  Matthew Hancock, I and You
  • Lead Performance, Duo Ensemble, (Intimate Theatre) Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock, I and You
  • Performance by a Lead Actress (Intimate Theatre) Joanna Strapp, Reborning
  • Best Solo Performance  Jenny O’Hara, Broomstick
  • Direction of a Drama (Intimate Theatre) Simon Levy, Reborning
  • Direction of a Comedy/Drama, (Intimate Theatre) Robin Larsen, I  and You
  • Direction of a Solo Performance Stephen Sachs, Broomstick
  • Production Design (Intimate Theatre) Broomstick
  • Composer of the Year Peter Bayne, Reborning
  • Scenic & Properties Design of the Year Andrew Hammer (set) and Misty Carlisle (properties) for Broomstick

Click here for the full list of award recipients

To be eligible for a 2014-2015 Scenie, a production must have been one of the nearly 250 reviewed on StageSceneLA between September 1, 2014, and August 31, 2015.

Isa’s Intern Journal: The beauty of being close to another human being in ‘I And You’

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch in 'I And You'.

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch in ‘I And You’.

by Isabel Espy

One Friday night about a month ago, still in the process of interviewing for this internship, I came to the Fountain Theatre with two of my best friends to see my first show here: I and You. As soon as we entered the space I had the unsettling feeling that I had accidentally broken into a seventeen ­year-old’s bedroom. I was in complete awe at the level of detail and specificity of Tom Buderwitz’s set.

Before the actors had even appeared on stage, I already felt like I was getting to know a character – the room. The Fountain’s 78-seat theatre really allows the audience to feel as if they themselves are part of the play. The lighting and set design had already brought me thoroughly into the world of the play even before the house lights were completely dimmed.

Then the actors stepped on stage. All my attention shifted from admiring the posters on the walls and the string of fairy lights behind the bed, because suddenly I was in the story. As I sat through the performance I could hear my friends laugh and gasp as they followed the action. At one point, all three of us gasped in perfect unison. 

I And You is 100% contemporary, referencing Instagram and Facebook right and left, making jokes anyone with any online presence can relate to. Yet, while social media plays a deep role in the piece, the issues that it brings up are universal to all, digitally savvy or otherwise. It is a play that deals with the fragility of true human connection. We have all been there. We have all had those moments of difficulty, felt the pain of isolation, the embarrassment of being vulnerable to another person, and the beauty of being close to another human.

Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

I won’t give anything away, but I can tell you that as we left the theatre both of my friends’ faces had the telltale wetness of cathartic tears. On our drive back to Westwood (with a quick stop at Chipotle for a post-show treat) we couldn’t stop talking about the play. I and You ends its run this weekend, and if you still have a chance, I would definitely recommend getting your butt over to the Fountain Theatre!

Final 2 performances: Saturday, June 20th @ 8pm; Sunday, June 21st @ 2pm.

Get Tickets/Info

Isabel Espy is the Fountain Theatre’s Summer Arts Intern from UCLA. 

Fountain Theatre Extends Acclaimed ‘I And You’ for Two Added Performances June 20 & 21

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch

Matthew Hancock and Jennifer Finch

The Fountain Theatre’s critically acclaimed Los Angeles premiere of I And You will extend for two added performances on SaturdayJune 20 at 8pm and Sunday, June 21 at 2pm.
On the night before a class assignment is due, Caroline and Anthony plumb the mysteries of a Whitman poem…unaware that a deeper mystery has brought them together. Written by Lauren Gunderson and directed by Robin Larsen, our Los Angeles Premiere stars Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock and has earned outstanding critical praise, including highlighted as Critic’s Choice in the Los Angeles Times.
Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

CRITIC’S CHOICE… a stunning exploration of cosmic interconnectedness …  a testimonial to the power of intimate theater.” — Los Angeles Times

“WOW! At once funny, captivating, and profoundly moving, a powerful piece of theater … Two of the finest young actors you’ll see all year!” – StageSceneLA

DAZZLING…those performances are extraordinary… moving, unearthly, and completely satisfying” — Los Angeles Post

DYNAMIC… one of those plays you’ll want to see more than once…a great story beautifully told” — Discover Hollywood

UPLIFTINGSUPERB… compelling performances … the Fountain has a gift for presenting extraordinary plays which are at once entertaining and thought-provoking, and ‘I and You’ is no exception.” — Examiner

BEAUTIFUL… packs a real punch … a very lovely play” — ArtsBeatLA

Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock

With these two added performances, only 10 performances remain. The run now ends Sunday, June 21, 2pm. Get Tickets/More Info 

High School Students Enjoy ‘I And You’ and Meet Actors at Fountain Theatre

Actors chat with students after the performance
Actors chat with students after the performance

“It was great. It was really amazing,” exclaims student

What’s better than skipping class to see an acclaimed production of the Los Angeles Premiere of an award-winning play? Students from three Los Angeles area high schools — Campbell Hall, John Marshall High School,  and Westmark School — enjoyed a special matinee yesterday of I And You at the Fountain. For some, it was their first time seeing a professional production of a play. For many, it was an experience they’ll never forget.

The full house of students had a great time watching the funny and heartfelt comedy/drama starring Jennifer Finch and Matthew Hancock about two high school students discovering they share a mysterious connection. Many were blown away by the sudden twist of the powerful ending. The Fountain production of I And You has been highlighted as Critic’s Choice in the LA Times, hailed as “a testimonial to the power of intimate theater.”

After the performance, the students engaged in a lively Q&A Talkback with the two actors.  

The students came by bus from three schools representing three communities in the LA area. This special daytime student matinee was made possible through Theatre As A Learning Tool, the Fountain Theatre’s educational outreach program making the live theatre experience accessible to students in Southern California.

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