The contemporary American experience, in all its vigor and complexity, takes center stage this season at Palm Beach Dramaworks in downtown West Palm Beach.
Producing Artistic Director William Hayes has planned a season that features two Pulitzer Prize-winning plays, “Topdog/Underdog” by Suzan-Lori Parks and “August: Osage County” by Tracy Letts; the world premiere of “The Science of Leaving Omaha” by Carter W. Lewis; and the classic “Twelve Angry Men” by Reginald Rose.
With the exception of “Twelve Angry Men,” the plays were written in the 21st century and all tell stories that reflect America’s diverse tapestry as they shine a light on family dynamics and the tribulations of modern life. According to Hayes, even though “Twelve Angry Men” was introduced in 1954, it, too, speaks with unnerving immediacy to today’s audiences.
Direction is by J. Barry Lewis, who also helms “Twelve Angry Men,” Dec. 9 - 24. The play examines how the baggage and prejudices people bring into a jury room can impede the Constitutional guarantee of a fair trial.
Next up is the world premiere of “The Science of Leaving Omaha,” Feb. 3 – 19, a standout from the 2022 New Year/New Plays Festival. Bruce Linser directs this play about young, marginalized, working-class Midwesterners with limited options.
The fourth production is the Pulitzer Prize-winning “August: Osage County,” March 31 – April 16, a harrowing and hilarious comic drama about a middle-class Oklahoma family. Hayes directs. The season concludes with another Pulitzer Prize-winner, “Topdog/Underdog,” May 26 – June 11, and is directed by Be Boyd. It’s the story of a pair of African-American brothers, both in their thirties, who were abandoned as teenagers by their parents and are caught in an endless struggle to survive.
For tickets and more information, go to PalmBeachDramaworks.org.