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Michael R. Jackson & Common to Join Second Stage Theater’s Winter’s Ball

Second Stage Theater will host a Winter’s Ball geared towards young professionals and arts patrons. The fundraising event will take place on Monday, February 27 at The Pierre Hotel (2 East 61st Street).

The evening will feature three parts, starting with an intimate cocktail party, followed by an exclusive performance by Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael R. Jackson, and ending with a dance party hosted by Academy Award, Grammy and Emmy-winner Common, who is currently starring in Second Stage‘s acclaimed production of Between Riverside and Crazy.

The evening’s Co-Chairs are Natasa and Michael Valocchi and the Host Committee includes Tara and Michael Adashev, Mia and Fergus Campbell, Janet Lynne Knopf, Sarah Kupferman, Dre and Pitch Lindsay, Max Needle, Anne and Adrian Perry, Victoria Tomkins, Sydney Wolofsky and Joshua Diamond.

The Ball begins at 8:00pm with cocktails, followed the performance at 9:00pm and the dance party at 10:00pm. All funds raised from the evening support Second Stage‘s mission to produce a diverse range of plays and musicals from America’s most respected artists, as well as new works from emerging voices.

For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit https://2STWintersBall.givesmart.com or call Second Stage‘s Special Events Office at 212-787-8302 x119.

BIOGRAPHIES

is one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people of 2022. His Pulitzer Prize and New York Drama Critics Circle winning A Strange Loop (which had its 2019 world premiere at Playwrights Horizons in association with Page 73 Productions) received 11 Tony nominations in 2022, winning Best Musical, and was called “a full-on laparoscopy of the heart, soul, and loins” as well as a “gutsy, jubilantly anguished musical with infectious melodies” by Ben Brantley for The New York Times. In The New Yorker, Vinson Cunningham wrote, “To watch this show is to enter, by some urgent, bawdy magic, an ecstatic and infinitely more colorful version of the famous surreal lithograph by M. C. Escher: the hand that lifts from the page, becoming almost real, then draws another hand, which returns the favor.” Awards and associations include: a New Professional Theatre Festival Award, a Jonathan Larson Grant, a Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award, an ASCAP Foundation Harold Adamson Award, a Whiting Award, the Helen Merrill Award for Playwriting, an Outer Critics Circle Award, a Drama Desk Award, an Obie Award, an Antonyo Award, a Fred Ebb Award, a Windham-Campbell Prize, a Dramatist Guild Fellowship and he is an alum of Page 73’s Interstate 73 Writers Group.

Academy Award, Emmy and Grammy-winning artist, actor, author, and activist, COMMON most recently appeared opposite Keke Palmer in the film Alice, which premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. He recently wrapped production on Stefon Bristol’s Breathe opposite Jennifer Hudson, Milla Jovovich, and Quvenzhan√© Wallis, as well as Apple TV+’s upcoming sci-fi drama series, “Wool” and the independent Hollywood satire, El Tonto. Other film and television work includes Mindy Kaling‘s hit Netflix series “Never Have I Ever;” Ava for director Tate Taylor; The Informer with Joel Kinnaman and Rosamund Pike; The Kitchen opposite Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish and Elisabeth Moss; The Hate You Give with Amanda Stenberg, Issa Rae and KJ Apa; the Warner Bros animated film Smallfoot; the indie film All About Nina; the action film Hunter Killer with Gerard Butler, Gary Oldman and Linda Cardellini; David Ayer’s Suicide Squad; John Wick: Chapter 2; and A Happening of Monumental Proportions with Allison Janney. He serves as an executive producer of Showtime’s hit TV series “The Chi” and the Netflix drama Burning Sands. He starred in the Oscar nominated film, Selma, and co-wrote with John Legend the song, “Glory,” for which he won the 2015 Academy Award and 2016 Grammy Award for “Best Original Song in a Motion Picture.”

His many albums include A Beautiful Revolution Parts 1 and 2, Let Love, and Black America Again, among others. He has written two memoirs, Let Love Have the Last Word and One Day It’ll All Make Sense, both of which became New York Times best-sellers. For the past several years, Common has dedicated countless hours and has been deeply engaged in social justice and advocacy work around mass incarceration, mental health, and voting. After the success and impact of his Imagine Justice concert in 2017 and his Hope & Redemption Tour to eight different prisons, Common decided to establish and launch “Imagine Justice” as a new nonprofit in 2018. Through his Common Ground Foundation, Common is dedicated to empowering high school students from underserved communities to become future leaders.

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Second Stage Theater’s 44th Season kicked off last fall with Bess Wohl‘s new play, Camp Siegfried, directed by David Cromer. This spring, the season will continue with the new musical, White Girl in Danger, written by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winner Michael R. Jackson, directed by Lileana Blain-Cruz and featuring choreography by Raja Feather Kelly. The musical, a co-production with Vineyard Theatre, will begin previews March 15th and open April 10th at the Kiser Theater. The season will conclude with an all-new production of Larissa FastHorse‘s The Thanksgiving Play, directed by Rachel Chavkin, beginning previews March 23rd and officially opening on April 20th at the Hayes Theater.

Under the artistic direction of Carole Rothman, Second Stage Theater operates three New York City venues, exclusively dedicated to producing living American Playwrights.

Second Stage recently completed its 43rd season, which included the Tony Award-winning revival of Richard Greenberg‘s Take Me Out and the New York premiere production of Lynn Nottage‘s Tony-nominated play Clyde’s, as well as the world premieres of Rajiv Joseph‘s Letters of Suresh and JC Lee’s To My Girls. The company’s 2021-22 productions received several nominations and awards, including Tony Awards for Best Revival of a Play (Take Me Out) and Best Featured Actor in a Play (Jesse Tyler Ferguson – Take Me Out); the Outer Critics Circle Awards for Outstanding Revival of a Play (Take Me Out), Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play (Jesse Tyler Ferguson – Take Me Out) and Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play (Uzo Aduba – Clyde’s); the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Projection Design (Shawn Duan – Letters of Suresh); and the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Costume Design for a Play (Jennifer Moeller – Clyde’s).

Second Stage‘s first season on Broadway at The Hayes Theater included Lobby Hero by Kenneth Lonergan, directed by Trip Cullman (Tony nominee for Best Revival of Play, Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role, Michael Cera and Brian Tyree Henry) and Straight White Men by Young Jean Lee, directed by Anna D. Shapiro.

Among Second Stage‘s 180 productions are the 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner Between Riverside and Crazy by Stephen Adly Guirgis; the 2010 Pulitzer Prize winner Next to Normal by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey; the 2012 Pulitzer Prize winner Water by the Spoonful by Quiara Alegria Hudes; Mary Page Marlowe by Tracy Letts; The Last Five Years by Jason Robert Brown; Dogfight by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Peter Duchan; Dear Evan Hansen by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Steven Levenson; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark by Lynn Nottage; Trust and Lonely, I’m Not by Paul Weitz; Grand Horizons by Bess Wohl; The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity by Kristoffer Diaz; Everyday Rapture and Whorl Inside a Loop by Dick Scanlan and Sherie Rene Scott; Let Me Down Easy and Notes From the Field by Anna Deavere Smith; Becky Shaw by Gina Gionfriddo; Torch Song by Harvey Fierstein; Eurydice by Sarah Ruhl; The Little Dog Laughed by Douglas Carter Beane; Metamorphoses by Mary Zimmerman; The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin; Jitney by August Wilson; Crowns by Regina Taylor; Saturday Night by Stephen Sondheim; Afterbirth: Kathy & Mo’s Greatest Hits by Mo Gaffney and Kathy Najimy; This Is Our Youth by Kenneth Lonergan; Coastal Disturbances by Tina Howe; A Soldier’s Play by Charles Fuller; The Good Times Are Killing Me by Lynda Barry; and Tiny Alice and Peter and Jerry by Edward Albee.

The company’s more than 170 citations include six 2017 Tony Awards for Dear Evan Hansen (Best Musical; Best Lead Actor in a Musical, Ben Platt; Best Featured Actress in a Musical, Rachel Bay Jones; Best Book of a Musical; Best Original Score; Best Orchestrations); the 2009 Tony Awards for Best Lead Actress in a Musical (Alice Ripley, Next to Normal), Best Score (Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey, Next to Normal), and Best Orchestrations (Tom Kitt and Michael Starobin, Next to Normal); the 2007 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play (Julie White, The Little Dog Laughed); the 2005 Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical (Rachel Sheinkin, …Spelling Bee) and Best Featured Actor in a Musical (Dan Fogler, …Spelling Bee); the 2002 Tony Award for Best Director of a Play (Mary Zimmerman for Metamorphoses); the 2002 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Body of Work, 29 Obie Awards, 11 Outer Critics Circle Awards, four Clarence Derwent Awards, 17 Drama Desk Awards, 11 Theatre World Awards, one Dorothy Louden Award, 20 Lucille Lortel Awards, the Drama Critics Circle Award and 23 AUDELCO Awards.

In 1999, Second Stage Theater opened The Tony Kiser Theater, its state-of-the-art, 296-seat theater, designed by renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. In 2002, Second Stage launched “Second Stage Theater Uptown” to showcase the work of up-and-coming artists at the 99-seat McGinn/Cazale Theater. The Theater supports artists through several programs that include residencies, fellowships and commissions, and engages students and community members through education and outreach programs.

In 2018, Second Stage began producing at its 581 seat Broadway home, The Hayes Theater. Originally named “The Little Theater” and built in 1912, the city landmark has been remodeled by David Rockwell of Rockwell Group.

For more information, please visit www.2ST.com. Follow Second Stage on Twitter: @2STNYC, Instagram: @2stnyc and Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/2STNYC.


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