George Street Playhouse releases 2016-2017 season

Family — in particular sons — seems to be a theme in the just announced 2016-2017 season at the George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, N.J. It’s also is made up of predominantly new work.

“Mama’s Boy” features Lee Harvey Oswald and his mother Marguerite; “American Son” focuses on a biracial son arrested by police; “Bad Jews” pits three young-adult Jewish cousins whose Holocaust survivor grandfather just passed away,  and an orphan girl who  writes letters to her unknown benefactor as she makes her way in the world. That last one  is a musical and sounds familiar because of the 1953 movie with  56-year-old Fred Astaire chasing 24-year-old  Leslie Caron. (Don’t get me started on the obvious. I’ll leave that to the movie bloggers).

A fifth slot — as George Street often does — will be booked later just in case something really, really good becomes available. You never know.
Here are the basics. More info on tickets and casting later.
 Marguerite Oswald, played by Betsy Aidem, talks with her son, Lee Harvey Oswald, played by Graham Emmons, after he is charged with the murder of President John F. Kennedy in the world premiere of the play "Mama's Boy" at the Good Theater Company in Portland, Maine,  in November of 2016. (Courtesy of Good Theater Company)
Marguerite Oswald (Betsy Aidem) talks with her son, Lee Harvey Oswald (Graham Emmons) after he is charged with the murder of President John F. Kennedy in the world premiere of the play “Mama’s Boy” at the Good Theater Company in Portland, Maine,  in November of 2016. (Courtesy of Good Theater Company)

Mama’s Boy

October 18 – November 6, 2016

Marguerite Oswald was domineering, obsessive and desperate in her need to be loved by her younger son, Lee Harvey. A chilling glimpse into what may have happened in the Oswald household in the months leading up to that fateful November morning in Dallas.

Daddy Long Legs

Based on the classical novel by Jean Webster
November 29 – December 24, 2016

A witty and winsome young woman`s wishes are answered when an anonymous gentleman she nicknames Daddy Long Legs gives her the opportunity to leave her orphanage and attend university. In return, Jerusha shares her life with her unknown benefactor through treasured letters as she grows into an intelligent and independent woman and experiences a budding romance with a young suitor. This heartwarming new musical has charmed audiences of all ages from London to New York. Click here to visit the musical’s website

Tamara Tunie ("Law & Order: SVU") and Michael Hayden in the world premiere of "American Son" at Barrington Stage through July 9. (PHOTO: Scott Barrow)
Tamara Tunie (“Law & Order: SVU”) and Michael Hayden in the world premiere of “American Son” at Barrington Stage through July 9. (PHOTO: Scott Barrow)

American Son

February 7-26, 2017

Jamal’s mother is a psychology professor and black. His father is an FBI agent and white. Although their marriage is in tatters they both fiercely love their biracial son. We meet them in a police station as they try to determine what happened and where their son is. With no explanation forthcoming and emotions building, this highly-charged drama twists, turns and builds to an explosive conclusion. The play received its world premiere at the Barrington Stage Company, Pittsfield, Mass., last month.

Bad Jews
March 21 – April 9, 2017

Liam is a self-proclaimed “bad Jew” – and he may actually be an atheist. It is the night after his grandfather`s funeral, and Liam and his cousin Daphna are arguing over who should inherit “Poppy`s” Chai necklace. The verbal battle rages until Liam stakes claim to the necklace, and a vicious and hilarious brawl about family, faith and legacy begins. The play premiered Off-Broadway in October 2012 at the Roundabout Theatre Company‘s Black Box Theatre, then transferred upstairs to the Laura Pels Theatre. To read the New York Times review and watch a video, click here.

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