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PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Wednesday, February 29, 2012 CONTACT: Patrick Finlon, Marketing Director 315-443-2636 or


Sizzling Bio-Drama of Famed Painter Mark Rothko— Winner of the 2010 Tony Award for Best Play (Syracuse, NY)—The 2010 Tony Award-winner for Best Play, Red is an intense and exciting bio-drama of the famed Abstract Expressionist painter Mark Rothko at the time that he was working on a commission for a series of murals for New York’s Four Seasons restaurant. On paper, the play has two characters, Rothko and young assistant. On stage, the paintings themselves become characters adding a stunning visual presence and making palpable the intense physical process of the art. As Rothko and his young protégé prepare paint and canvas and assess and reassess each work, they engage in a combative struggle over the methods and purpose of art that is sharp, funny and mentally invigorating. Running March 7—25, Red will be performed in the Archbold Theatre at Syracuse Stage, 820 East Genesee Street. Tickets range $18-$50 and are available at the Syracuse Stage Box Office, 315-443-3275 or The presenting sponsor is The Dorothy and Marshall M. Reisman Foundation. Sponsors are Key Bank and Tompkins Financial Advisors, with additional support from The Grandma Brown Foundation. Media sponsors are Clear Channel Media and Entertainment and the Syracuse New Times. Syracuse Stage’s 2011-2012 season sponsors are The Post-Standard and Time Warner Cable. Playwright John Logan—whose screenplays include Hugo, Gladiator, Rango, Coriolanus and the latest James Bond Skyfall—has said that Red was inspired by Rothko’s art itself. He was working on a film in London when he visited the Tate Modern where several of the Rothko murals are displayed. He was struck first by how deeply moving he found the canvases, and second, by how other patrons disparaged them as shallow and meaningless. The contrast inspired him to find out more about Rothko. “He believed that art matters,” Logan said in a televised interview with Charlie Rose. “Rothko was much more concerned with being listened to and understood than being liked. He asked that we put a little care and effort into viewing his work.” Penny Metropulos (Picasso at the Lapine Agile and Up) returns to Syracuse Stage to direct Logan’s play after recently winning multiple Joseph Jefferson awards for her production of Madness of George III at the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. For Metropulos, the key to Red is


the passion that drives the characters, and the very real human need to connect, an idea, she says, that is contained in the play’s first line: “What do you see?” “We’re always trying to know if the other person sees the world the same as we do,” she explains. “It’s about connection. This artist more than anything wants the viewer to connect with his art in the same way that he connects to music. It’s a spiritual connection. What happens in the play is an unknown need to connect with this young man overtakes him. And the young man has a need to connect with him as an artist and as a mentor.” Rothko will be played by veteran actor Joseph Graves, who is the Artistic Director of Peking University’s Institute of World Theatre and Film in Beijing, China where he has directed and/or produced 70 plays, including many Chinese premieres of Western plays. As an actor, Graves is well-known in Great Britain and the United States for Shakespearean roles such as Macbeth, King Lear, Richard III, Richard II, Titus, Timon, Antony, Falstaff, Hamlet and Romeo. Rothko’s assistant, Ken, will be played by Matt Amendt, whose credits include Henry V, Peter Gynt, The Merchant of Venice, The Great Gatsby, Hamlet, As You Like It, and Death of a Salesman, all at the acclaimed Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis. Mark Rothko (originally named Marcus Rothkowitz) was born in Russia and came to the United States with his family in 1913. After dropping out of college, he moved to New York, where a chance invitation brought him to a drawing class at the Art Students League where he discovered his love of art. Rothko painted in a figurative style for nearly twenty years, his portraits and depictions of urban life baring the soul of those living through The Great Depression in New York. In the 1930s, Rothko exhibited with The Ten, a close-knit group of nine American painters, which provided an important incubation for the Abstract Expressionist school to come. In the 1940s, Rothko moved to pure abstraction, which ultimately led to his signature style of two or three rectangles floating in fields of saturated color in 1949. Beginning in the early 1950s Rothko was heralded, along with Jackson Pollock, Willem deKooning, Franz Kline and others, as the standard bearers of the New American Painting—a truly American art that was not simply a derivative of European styles. A major figure in New York’s Abstract Expressionist movement, Rothko has been the subject of retrospectives at the Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and other major museums around the world. LOCAL CONNECTIONS EXHIBIT: Motifs, Evocations. Personal Images Located in the Sutton Pavilion and Upper Lobby at Syracuse Stage throughout the run of Red. A Collective Exhibition by Local Latina & Latino Artists. Featured works by: Juan Cruz, Oscar Garces, Marcela Hanford, Abisay Puentes, Esperanza Tielbaard and Angela Arrey-Wastavino. Motifs, Evocations. Personal Images features new works by the artists that originated the collective at La Casita Cultural Center. FILM: Cinema Syracuse Presents Rothko’s Rooms Sunday, March 11 at 4 p.m. in the Storch Theatre at Syracuse Stage, following the 2 p.m. matinee of Red. Free and open to the public. Learn more about this event on Facebook.


EXHIBIT: Works by Visual Art Students from CFAC's Creative Arts Academy Located in the Coyne Lobby at Syracuse Stage throughout the run of Red. Celebrating its 40th anniversary, Community Folk Art Center (CFAC) is a proud unit of the African American Studies Department at Syracuse University, with the mission of exalting cultural and artistic pluralism by collecting, exhibiting, teaching and interpreting the visual and performing arts. Creative Arts Academy is a tuition-free, pre-professional, after school arts academy for students in grades 7-12 in the Syracuse City School District who want to pursue a career in the arts. LECTURE: Sumi Hayashi on Mark Rothko, Presented by SU’s Department of Art March 20 at 6:30 p.m. at Shemin Auditorium in the Shaffer Art Building on Syracuse University’s main campus. Free and open to the public. Sumi Hayashi, Curator, Kawamura Memorial Museum of Art, presents a lecture on Abstract Expressionist artist Mark Rothko. Hayashi co-organized the 2009 Rothko exhibition at the Tate Modern in London and is currently translating James Breslin’s Mark Rothko: A Biography. MUSEUM: Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, Museum of Art Two original Rothko paintings (Abstraction Number 11, 1947 and Abstraction Number 18, 1951) can be viewed at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, Museum of Art located in Utica NY. SPECIAL EVENTS TUES, March 6 at 7:30 p.m.

M&T Bank Pay-What-You-Can Night $9 suggested donation to watch the final dress rehearsal. Tickets available at the Syracuse Stage Box Office on day of show starting at 10 a.m. Call 315-443-3275.

THUR, March 8, 6:00 p.m.

Jazz Vocal Project Live music before the 7:30 p.m. show featuring SU Drama student vocalists and the Bill Horrace Trio.

FRI, March 9

LIVE in the Sutton Series A post-show party in the Sutton Pavilion following the 8 p.m. opening night performance with drinks, complimentary food, and live music by Nancy Kelly.

WED, March 14 at 1 p.m.

Wednesday @1 Lecture Series A 1 p.m. lecture, located in the Sutton Pavilion, before the 2 p.m. performance.

WED, March 14 at 2 p.m.

Gifford Open Captioned Series Open captioned 2 p.m. performance.

SAT, March 17 at 3 p.m.

Welch Allyn Sign Interpreted Performance Series In Memory of Susan Thompson

SUN, March 18

Actor Talkback Series Meet the actors after the 7:00 p.m. performance.


THUR, March 22

Happy Hour & Jazz Vocal Project Half-price drinks 6:30-7:30 p.m., before the 7:30 p.m. performance. Live music entertainment starts at 6 p.m. by the Jazz Vocal Project, featuring SU Drama student vocalists with the Bill Horrace Trio.

SAT, March 24 at 3 p.m.

Audio Described Series Patrons who are blind or visually impaired may pick up an infrared audio receiver upon arriving at the theatre, and during the performance a live narrator will verbalize visual details about the actors and scenic elements. Due to limited availability, audio receivers must be reserved in advance at our Box Office, 315-443-3275.

SUN, March 25 at 2 p.m.

Gifford Open Captioned Series Open captioned 2 p.m. performance.

SYRACUSE STAGE Syracuse Stage is Central New York’s premier professional theatre. Founded in 1974, Stage has produced more than 235 plays in 38 seasons including a number of world, American, and East Coast premieres. Each season 90,000 patrons enjoy an adventurous mix of new plays and bold interpretations of classics and musicals featuring the finest theatre artists. In addition, Stage maintains a vital educational outreach program that annually serves over 30,000 students from 24 counties. A solid core of subscribers and supporters helps keep Syracuse Stage a vibrant artistic presence in Central New York. Additional support comes from the government, foundations, corporations and Syracuse University. Syracuse Stage is a constituent of the Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre, and a member of the Arts and Cultural Leadership Alliance (ACLA), the University Hill Corporation and the East Genesee Regent Association. Syracuse Stage is a member of The League of Resident Theatres (LORT), the largest professional theatre association in the country.


Info Sheet BASIC INFO Red By John Logan Directed by Penny Metropulos March 7-25, 2012 Archbold Theatre at Syracuse Stage 820 East Genesee Street; Syracuse, NY 13210 SPONSORS Season Sponsors:

The Post-Standard Time Warner Cable

Presenting Sponsor: The Dorothy and Marshall M. Reisman Foundation Show Sponsors:

Key Bank Tompkins Financial Advisors

Additional support: The Grandma Brown Foundation Media Sponsor:

Clear Channel Media and Entertainment Syracuse New Times

TICKETS Adults: $28-$50 18 & Under: $18 40 & Under: $28 *Senior discounts available all performances except Friday and Saturday evenings. *Rush tickets day of performance only: $20-$25 general public and $18 with valid student ID, subject to availability. Online: Call: 315-443-3275 In person: 820 East Genesee Street Groups (10 or more): 315-443-9844 CAST Matthew Amendt (Ken) Joseph Graves (Rothko)


DESIGNERS William Bloodgood (Scenic Designer) Thomas C. Hase (Lighting Designer) Gretchen Darrow-Crotty (Costume Designer) Jeremy J. Lee (Sound Designer) STAGE MANAGEMENT Laura Jane Collins (Stage Manager) SHOW CALENDAR (MARCH) SUN












7:30 PWYC

7:30 P

7:30 P

8:00 O

3:00 8:00









2:00 W, OC



3:00 S 8:00

7:30 18












3:00 AD

7:00 D



2:00 OC

PWYC=Pay What You Can Night (Final Dress Rehearsal) P=Preview O=Press Opening, LIVE in the Sutton S=Sign Interpreted AD=Audio Described OC = Open Captioned D=Actor Talkback W=Wednesday @ 1 Lecture

### Syracuse Stage I Producing Artistic Director: Timothy Bond I Managing Director: Jeffrey Woodward 820 E. Genesee St. I Main: 315-443-4008 I Box Office: 315-443-3275 I