Tag Archives: sign language

Staged Reading of ‘Cyrano’ Soars at New York Theatre Workshop

'Cyrano' at New York Theatre Workshop

‘Cyrano’ at New York Theatre Workshop

The Fountain Theatre and Deaf West Theatre brought their lyrical and romantic  deaf/hearing updated-version of Cyrano to New York last Monday, April 29, for a special staged reading at the acclaimed New York Theatre Workshop. The staged reading was performed for a full house of NY theater producers and invited VIP’s for the purpose of solidifying interest in a possible New York production.

Four original cast members were flown in from Los Angeles: Troy Kotsur, Paul Raci, Victor Warren and Al Bernstein.  The rest of the ensemble was cast with local New York actors Matt Biagini, Robert De MayoSamira Wiley, John McGinty, Puy Navarro, James W. Guido, Alexandria Wailes, Richard Dent, and original cast member Maleni Chaitoo who happens to now live in NY.

The company rehearsed with director Simon Levy for only three days. Our thanks to our friends at Primary Stages for providing their rehearsal studios to the Cyrano company. Also in attendance at rehearsals were playwright Stephen Sachs, Deaf West Artistic Director David Kurs, Fountain Producing Artistic Director Deborah Lawlor, DWT Founder Ed Waterstreet and his wife, actress Linda Bove.

The highly regarded New York Theatre Workshop is the Tony-winning company dedicated to developing new plays and musicals.  Over their 30-year history, they have launched many acclaimed productions and have transferred several to Broadway, including Rent, Dirty Blonde, Homebody/Kabul, Peter and the Starcatcher, Once, and more. The Cyrano staged reading was held Monday in the NYTW upstairs rehearsal hall. An invited list of producers and VIP guests attended, including representatives from New York Theatre Workshop, The Public Theater, Manhattan Theatre Club, Primary Stages, 59E59 Theatres, Broadway director Jeff Calhoun, and more. The actors performed Cyrano entirely memorized and off-book and cleverly incorporated the use of captioning and video design on a large TV flat screen monitor.

Our sincere and heartfelt thanks to our Cyrano donors who contributed to our fundraising campaign and made this very important New York opportunity possible: Phillip Baron, Cal Bartlett, JB Blanc, Eve Brenner, Carlease Burke, Johnny Clark, Kyle Colerider-Krugh, Cathy Colloff, Debra Conklin, James Conley, Kimberly Cyzner Family, Lorraine Danza, Timothy Davis-Reed, Fred Dean, Donna Duarte, Susan Duncan, Michael Edwin, Mark Freund, Amy Frost, Heidi Girardoni, Jane Gordon, Gaby Gross, William Dennis Hurley, Trice Koopman, Ken LaZebnik, Robert Leventer, Dennis Levitt, Ruth Linnick, Betsy Malloy, Caitlin Marcus, Donne McRae, Susan Merson, Mills, Michelle Montooth, Joel Moreno, Russell Nore, Jenny O’Hara, Susan Oka, Z. Oppenheim, Patricia Parker, Cynthia Paskos, Patty Paul, Terry Paule, Sharon Perlmutter, Ralph Pezoldt, Allison Pickering, Lawrence Poindexter, Priscilla Pointer, Bill Pugin and The Sign Language Company, Terri Roberts, Mark Routhier, Rita Schneir, Sandy Schuckett, Susanne Spira Survivors Trust, Suanne Spoke, Marjorie Throne, Eileen T’Kaye, Zoltan & Dorcas Tokes, Andrede Toledo, Tate Tullier, Jessica Turner, Nick Ullett, Heidi Girardoni, Carol Watson, Marianne Weil, William Wilk. We could not have done it without you!

What happens now? We’ll see what the future holds for our unique, thrilling and moving ASL/spoken English version of Cyrano. In the meantime, enjoy these snapshots of the rehearsal process and the staged reading!

‘Cyrano’ in New York 

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New Video: Romantic Balcony Scene from CYRANO

Enjoy this new video created from our critically acclaimed sold-out 2012 production of Cyrano.  This world premiere of a new play, a re-imagined sign language spin on the romantic classic Cyrano de Bergerac reset in a modern city, has been named a Theater Highlight of 2012 by LA Stage Times.

In this funny, poetic and powerful co-production between Fountain Theatre and Deaf West Theatre, Cyrano is a brilliant deaf poet in love with a hearing woman.

‘Cyrano’ Actor and Playwright Nab Ovation Award Nominations

Troy Kotsur as Cyrano

The Fountain Theatre‘s acclaimed and sold-out co-production with Deaf West Theatre of Cyrano received two Ovation Award nominations last night.   Actor Troy Kotsur has been nominated for Best Lead Actor in a Play for his lead role as Cyrano , and playwright  Stephen Sachs for Best Original Play.

The Ovation Awards are considered LA’s version of the Tony Awards. Founded in 1989 by the LA Stage Alliance, the  Ovation Awards are the only peer-judged theater awards in Los Angeles. To give you an idea of the size and scope of the theatrical landscape in Southern California, there were 400 total productions registered for Ovation Award consideration from 173 companies throughout the region.  For the 2011-12 voting season, there are a grand total of 191 nominations for 77 productions, presented by 50 companies.

The Fountain Theatre has the distinction of receiving more nominations and winning more awards than any other intimate theatre in the history of the Ovation Awards.

For a complete list of the current Ovation Award nominees, click here.

The 2012 Ovation Awards ceremony will take place on Monday, November 12, at the historic Los Angeles Theatre, 615 South Broadway, in downtown Los Angeles, at 7:30 pm.  For more information: www.LASTAGEOvations.com.

Photo Slideshow: ‘Cyrano’ Closing party

Snapshots from our party celebrating the magical sold-out run of the world premiere of Cyrano after the final performance on Sunday, July 29th.

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L.A. Poet Expresses ‘Spellbinding’ Emotion of “Cyrano” Best Way He Can: As a Poem

by Marvin B. Farber

Written after a riveting matinee performance of The Fountain Theatre and Deaf West Theatre  co-production of a new play, Cyrano.

Erinn Anova and Troy Kotsur in “Cyrano”.

BRILLIANCE

An inspired deaf poet
patterns his poetry of love
with graceful, sensual 
movements of the hands.
American Sign Language
Skill of the deaf actor
his body and hands
a ballet of movement
complemented by the 
sensuous voice of a hearing actor.

The deaf poet’s face
expresses deep emotions
of man and woman
an afternoon of spellbinding theater.
Sign language performers
combine with speaking actors
the stature of live theater lifts
poetry to a new level of imagination.

(July 2012)

Marvin B. Farber is a poet living in Los Angeles.

‘Cyrano” Cast Members Are “Sexy” in ASL Music Video

Actors Chip Bent and Maleni Chaitoo, two cast members from our smash hit production of Cyrano, got together on their own time and created this ASL Music Video, “Sexy and I Know It”.  Check it out!

New! “Cyrano” Video Trailer

Cyrano  Final Extension! Must End July 29th! (323) 663-1525  More Info