Straight from New York Off Broadway, Don Reed's One-Man Play 'EAST 14th - True Tales of a Reluctant Player' at The Marsh

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San Francisco 6-Week Engagement, May 8 - June 14, 2009, Press Opening May 16, 2009

The Marsh, a breeding ground for new performance, is pleased to present Don Reed's EAST 14th - True Tales of A Reluctant Player. In the spirit of John Leguizamo's "Freak," Sarah Jones "Bridge And Tunnel" and Whoopi Goldberg's "Whoppi," comes this hilarious solo show chronicling the true tale of a young man raised by his mother and ultra-strict step-father as a middle class, straight A, God-fearing church boy. The boy, however, wanted to be just like his dear old Dad. Too bad he didn't know dear old Dad was a pimp. Very funny, definitely poignant - a ride down a street you won't soon forget.

EAST 14th - True Tales of A Reluctant Player, opens for a limited engagement at The Marsh on May 8, 2009 and runs through June 14. The official opening night is Sunday, May 16. Weekend show times are Friday at 8:00 pm, Saturday at 8:30 pm and a Sunday matinee at 3:00 pm.

THE MARSH is located at 1062 Valencia Street, near 22nd street in the Mission District of San Francisco. Tickets are now on sale by calling Brown Paper Tickets, a 24/7 ticketing hotline, at 1-800-838-3006, or by visiting All seating for this performance is first-come, first-served. For more information, visit or

The play is set in Oakland, CA in the 1970's. Reed's father was super talented, cool as hell and very funny. He would say the most outrageous stuff, whether it was sexually charged or just a good old fashioned diss. He played the congos and was offered to travel with well-known bands. But he had never learned to read and felt he might be required to interpret a hotel bill or something - thus risking his "cool." So he let his dream pass. And for a while - got caught up in "The Life."

He had three sons. Darrell was really focused on digging women. He LOVED women. ALL of them, and he became a beautician - a very good one - so he could be around them all the time. "You know somethin' - every guy doin' hair in that shop is gay" he used to say. Then he smiled like a wolf in a hen house and said, "But, I'm not." Although a womanizer, he was deeply generous. Darrell would literally give anyone in need his very last dollar. His other brother, Tony, was a study in effeminate elegance and assassin level self-defense. Tony could whoop ANYBODY in the neighborhood and accordingly stomped the stereotype of "the weak gay man" to bits.

Reed himself was called Blinky because he had the habit of blinking his eyes. He remembers doing it on the bus ride all the way over to visit his father on Sundays. Sometimes his father wouldn't be there - but he'd leave the door unlocked and Reed would get one of Darrell's jackets out of the closet. Then he'd walk to the corner store, get a pint of Carnation Strawberry Ice Cream and coolly walk "The Stroll," pretending to be older. And the street walkers would ask, "Why you blinkin' like that?" then interject --"Wanna date baby?" And he'd say, after taking a spoonful of the delicious strawberry magic: "I could buy some if I wanted to - but I don't want to."

EAST 14TH - True Tales of a Reluctant Player ran the entire summer of 2008 Off Broadway in New York City. It was a double nominee - Best Actor and Best Playwright - for the 2008 NAACP THEATRE AWARDS - as well as a nominee for 2008 Best Solo Performance for the Audelco "Viv" Awards. Here's what some of the critics had to say about EAST 14TH - True Tales of a Reluctant Player, during its 2008 Off-Broadway run:

  • "Hilarious. The audience can't stop laughing…Don Reed plays all the characters with both ease and inexhaustible energy" - THE NEW YORKER
  • "A graceful genial performer...It's hard not to love 1970's funk and soul and Don Reed." - NEW YORK TIMES
  • "GO! "Most amazing, however, is that between all the laughs, Reed sneaks in a poignant yarn…" - LA WEEKLY

WHO: Don Reed's one-man show East 14th - True Tales of a Reluctant Player
WHERE: The Marsh, 1062 Valencia Street, @ 22nd Street in San Francisco
WHEN: Opens May 8th for a limited six-week engagement and runs until June 14th
TIX: $20 - $35 sliding scale. $50 for reserved seating
For tickets, call 800-838-3006 or visit
INFO: For more information or visit The Marsh website at
PHOTOS: For photos, email lajones (at) lajonesmedia (dot) com or diana (at) themarsh (dot) org

An Oakland native, Don Reed has performed, written & directed for film, television and theatre to great acclaim. His work on a Robert Townsend HBO special of up-and-coming comedians years ago caught the attention of Bill Cosby and led to the creation of a guest-starring role for him on "The Cosby Show." Reed went on to play the recurring role of Chip in "The Cosby Show" spin-off "A Different World" and was recently in "Bee Movie Shorts" starring Jerry Seinfeld.

Reed has performed all over the country and opened for Tony Award winner Tommy Tune. You may have heard his voice on: "Spiderman," "The Flintstones," "Johnny Quest," "ER," "Frasier," "Golden Globes," and "SNL." He has written/produced/directed short films for HBO/Russell Simmons/Stan Lathan/Brillstein-Grey and developed screenplays with Spike Lee's 40 Acres and Mule Filmworks and Maverick Films. He has an upcoming starring role in the independent feature "Go West." Additionally, Reed is the CEO/President of Reediculous Media having created movie trailers, television promos, game and commercial spots for "Get Smart," "Blades of Glory," "The Illusionist," Tyler Perry's "Why Did I Get Married?," "Will & Grace," "Sex and the City," "Family Guy," "Chappelle's Show," "Girlfriends," "Rescue Me," "The Shield" and "Law & Order."

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