New York University’s Graduate Acting Program and the Department of Design for Stage and Film in the Tisch School of the Arts have announced the world premiere of the new play Wonder: an American hymn to the shimmer of television and the end of history, by Steve Yockey. The play, an original commission by the Graduate Acting Program and created through the Joint-Stock Method, will open December 3 and run through December 7, 2009.

The time and setting in Wonder, directed by Rachel Chavkin, are described by one word: America. Within this realm an epic solar eclipse marks the end of history and the beginning of life as seen on television. A fledgling Eden blooms in a suburban living room, and the desperate memory of something grand savagely bangs on the door. A muted husband, his struggling wife, a terrified single mother, her prescient son, a traveling salesman, a bourbon-soaked newspaperman and everyone at the local television affiliate collide as life unravels. Chavkin was winner of the 2008 Edinburgh Fringe First Award for her production of Architecting and was also nominated for Best Ensemble Scottish Critics Award.

Mark Wing-Davey, chair of the Graduate Acting Program, seeks to engage students in the process of creating theater through the Joint-Stock Method, which is a distinctive style of working with writers, designers and directors using company research to inspire. In a workshop on a given subject, actors research and re-tell events in theatrical form as well as improvisations. This provides the playwright with an imaginative springboard for her or his own creative process.

Wonder will be performed at the Atlas Theatre, located at 111 2nd Avenue, 3rd Floor, Thursday and Friday, Dec. 3 and 4 at 8pm, Saturday, Dec. 5 at 8pm, Sunday, December 6 at 2pm and 7pm, and Monday, Dec. 7 at 8pm. Tickets may be purchased in advance at, or by calling 212.868.4444.

NYU Graduate Acting is a three year M.F.A program which invites 18 actors each year to train for performance in theater, film and television. The Department of Design for Stage and Film is three year M.F.A program which enables students to focus on one or two primary areas of design - set, film, costume, or lighting in theater and film. As part of the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, both programs work in close collaboration with each other offering students the highest level of training in New York City at the center of creative endeavors nationally and internationally.

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Richard Pierce
Richard Pierce
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