11:03 AM

Melissa Rain Anderson Directs Tarah Flanagan, Jennifer Cody, and Roger Clark in Staged Reading of New Michael Raver Play, CONTROL



Wednesday, October 13, 2021 at 7 PM at TheatreLab NYC - 357 W 36th St, 3rd Floor - Admission is Free

Proof of vaccination and masks will be required.


On October 13, Melissa Rain Anderson** directs a live, in-person reading of Michael Raver’s brand new play, Control. Written in conversation with Aristophanes’ classic, Lysistrata and inspired by the group, Moms Demand Action, Control addresses the very charged issue of gun violence in America. Set in Southlake, Texas, the play centers on a group of parents who rally together for change after a violent shooting at their children’s school.

The piece was written as a commission per the City Artists Corps Grant.

“I’m honored to have received this grant,” Raver says. “It’s a major honor. I wanted to write something that commented the insane number of mass shootings that have taken place in this country, and in the process, got to examine how such a turbulent issue impacts human relationships.”

The cast features Ka-Ling Cheung*, Jennifer Cody*, Roger Clark*, Katie Fabel*, Tarah Flanagan*, Liz Ramos*, and playwright Raver*. Stage directions will be read by Erin Mendez Stapleton.

I am happy to be collaborating with Michael Raver again and working on his new play, Control,” observes director Anderson. “I'm interested in the play's themes on what it means to be a good parent, a good partner and a good friend. Control explores all of these relationships through the lens of a shared traumatic event. I believe it is important now, more than ever, to shine a light on shared trauma and, hopefully, connect to each other as a source of healing.”

Raver's adaptation of The Picture of Dorian Gray was produced by Sonnet Repertory Theatre at the Signature Theatre Center in 2012. His plays Fire On Babylon, Riptide and Quiet Electricity have all been O’Neill semifinalists. His political period drama, Evening, has been a ScreenCraft Stage Play finalist and is currently a semifinalist at the Austin Film Festival. His work has been presented by The Pearl Theatre Company, Sonnet Repertory Theater, Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, The Martha Graham Company, The Bridge Street Theater, Playhouse on Park and many others. He served as a  judge for the Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBTQIA+ Fiction for three years and has written for Hamptons Magazine, Classical TV, NYC Monthly, Hamptons Monthly, Playbill, Dance Magazine, Cool Hunting, The Huffington Post, Imagista, MsMojo, Art 511 Magazine and Q-Life. Michael is a proud member of The Dramatists Guild, Actor’s Equity, and SAG-Aftra.

Melissa Rain Anderson most recently directed RII at Santa Cruz Shakespeare. Selected directing work includes the Regional Premier of The Play that Goes Wrong and The Wolves at The Repertory Theater of St. Louis; Macbeth, Big River and The Cocoanuts at Utah Shakespeare Festival; A Christmas Carol at Denver Center Theater Company (several years); The Wolves at Syracuse Stage and All is Calm- The Christmas Truce of 1914 at Alabama Shakespeare. Melissa is an Affiliate Artist at Geva Theatre Center where she has directed In the Heights, HAIR, La Cage Aux Folles, A Funny Thing…Forum, Spamalot, Spelling Bee among others. Melissa is a proud member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, Actor’s Equity, and SAG-Aftra.

*denotes a member of Actor’s Equity Association

**denotes a member of The Stage Directors and Choreographers Society

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