Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's "The Weird" Heads to Manhattan Source Theater

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Opens February 18, 2010

Melissa Pinsly, Mark Stetson, Allison Hirschlag, Matt Cohn in Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s THE WEIRD.

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Comic book writer and playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s collection of pulp plays THE WEIRD will be staged at Manhattan Theatre Source (177 Macdougal Street), opening February 18. The production stars Matt Cohn, Allison Hirschlag, Melissa Pinsly, Lucky Gretzinger, Mark Stetson and Mark Rosenthal, and is directed by Celine Rosenthal and Erin Gilmore. Performances are February 18 through 20 at 8:00 PM; February 20 through 21 at 2:00 PM. Tickets ($18) are available at: theatermania.com.

THE WEIRD is produced by Wake Up, Marconi! Productions, a New York City company formed in 2005 by a group of New York University Tisch School for the Arts’ students.

THE WEIRD is a collection of six short pulp plays that riff on classic horror movies, urban legends and comic book characters, linked together by themes of trust and the nature of relationships. Each one takes archetypal characters from well-known tales of terror and fantasy and throws them into more turmoil than the original creators could ever have imagined. In The Ten Minute Play About Rosemary's Baby, Rosemary must cope quickly with her husband's betrayal while carrying the spawn of Satan. Insect Love teaches us that mad scientists have a difficult time asking people out too. Morning Becomes Olestra is a cautionary tale for any woman considering cheating on her husband, especially with a vampire. Anything can happen when the horrors of love are mixed up with the horrors of the supernatural, but one thing is for sure, no one is going to make it out alive.

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s (playwright) other works include The Muckle Man (City Theatre in Pittsburgh), Dark Matters (Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre), Based on a Totally True Story (Manhattan Theatre Club), and The Mystery Plays (Yale Rep/2econd Stage Theatre). His early comedies Golden Age and Say You Love Satan were nominated for GLAAD Media Awards. For Marvel Comics, Aguirre-Sacasa is the Harvey Award-winning author of Angel: Revelations and The Dead of Night: Man-Thing. His latest title Marvel Divas was released in 2009. Most recently, he joined the writing staff of HBO’s Big Love and developed a series about werewolves, Howl, for the Fox Network. The Los Angeles Times named Aguirre-Sacasa one of their “Faces to Watch in 2010.”

Allison Hirschlag (Company Manager; Producer; “Laurie,” “Girl,” “Abigail,” “Frances”) is a graduate of Northwestern University with a B.S. in theater and is most recognized for her contract role as “Lizzie Spaulding” on Guiding Light. Daytime television was a place she was quite familiar with -- her mother, actress Julia Barr, played “Brooke English” for over 30 years on All My Children. Allison’s off-off Broadway productions include: The Illiad at the CSC; Whiskey, Beer, and Apple Pie at the Abingdon Theater; The Lead at Manhattan Repertory. Regional credits include: Fuddy Meers; Time of Your Life; Hot L Baltimore; and Landscape of the Body. Other TV credits: Law and Order: CI; Law and Order: SVU; Michael and Michael Have Issues. She also stage managed for the Aquila Theater Company and the Vineyard Theater.

Melissa Pinsly (Wake Up, Marconi! Co-Founder; Artistic Director; Producer; “Caroline,” “Woman,” “Wanda,” “Supergirl”) is a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and Stella Adler Studio of Acting. Off-off Broadway credits include: Laura in Haters, The Governess in Turn of the Screw, and Helena in Look Back in Anger. Melissa is an avid lover of comedy, having performed sketch comedy with The Wicked Wicked Hammerkatz at NYU, the Vital Theater, and Upright Citizens Brigade. She has done extensive voice-over work for products ranging from AT&T to Pop-Tarts.

Celine Rosenthal (Wake Up, Marconi! Co-Founder; Managing Director; Director; Producer; Lighting and Sound Design) is a graduate of NYU's Tisch School for the Arts, proud NYC paramedic, and founder of the Neela Theatre Project in Mumbai. Her first producer credit was for The Secret Garden for Taal Theatre Without Borders. She has directed several WUM!'s productions including V-Day the Aftermath and Breaking Free (a benefit for Arts and Autism), as well as many children's productions while she was living in Mumbai, India; most notably the original Smile at the Muktangan School, and Pankhudi's inaugural Children's Day Play Festival in the Suman Nagar slum.

Matthew Cohn (“Dr. DeLambre,” “Boy,” “Matthew,” “Stage Manager”) is a graduate of Dartmouth College where he majored in theater and philosophy. Recent roles include: Bérenger in Rhinoceros with The Mighty Theater; Richard in Aliens Exist at Manhattan Repertory Theater; and Curan in King Lear at the National Black Theater of Harlem, starring Tony-Award Winner Trazana Beverly.

Mark Stetson (“Man,” “Harold,” “Bibbo”) is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago Theater School. He is a student of comedy and co-founder of the sketch comedy group "So Busted Comedy," the improv group “Maybe Sherman,” and the children's sing-along and puppet show "Lil' Bits."

Erin Gilmore (Director) holds a BFA in film and television production from NYU and currently works as a film editor/producer for BBC America. Recent theatre directing credits include: Three Sisters with Rebellious Subjects, T.A.B. with HERE Arts Center/Downtown Urban Theatre Festival, and Haters at the Midtown International Theatre Festival.

More information and tickets for THE WEIRD at: theatermania.com and http://www.marconitheatre.com .

Media contact: Rodi Rosensweig, 203/270-8929, rodicompany(at)earthlink(dot)net.

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