Kansas City and the KC Rep offer the world premiere, at 8 p.m. tomorrow, May 1, on the Copaken Stage inside the H&R Block building in the downtown area when locally grown, renown playwright, Nathan Louis Jackson, debuts his newest creation, “Sticky Traps.”
Directed by Kyle Hatley, former associate artistic director for the Rep, “Sticky Traps” marks his return to lead the creative team for Jackson’s newly penned play. Hatley directed at several venues throughout Kansas City, Missouri in the past few seasons and also expanded his acting resume while here. Hatley was a regular in the KC Rep productions. Jackson grew up in Kansas City, Kansas and graduated from Washington High School and later attended Kansas City Kansas Community College before furthering his education at Kansas State University. Jackson’s previous plays have brought his acclaim, most notably, “Brokology.”
According to the Rep, “In a small town not far from Kansas City, a mother protects her homosexual son’s honor when his funeral is protested by a local church, in a new play by KC Rep Playwright-in-Residence Nathan Louis Jackson (“When I Come to Die,” and “Broke-ology”). Her actions have unintended consequences that will test her whole family — and the power of their love — in the face of hate.”
The show looks at religion and prejudice by shining a light into the dark realms of religious injustice and intolerance. Those in the metro area can easily prescribe similarities to a religious cult leader and his followers in Topeka, Kansas. The show is appropriate for teens and up.
“Sticky Traps,” continues the KC Rep’s 50th anniversary season with the new play running April 24 through May 24. Previews began on April 24. This is Jackson’s first world premiere as KC Rep’s Mellon Foundation Playwright in Residence, a spokesman for the KC Rep said. Previously, the Rep produced both of Jackson’s other plays, “When I Come to Die” and “Broke-ology,” directed by Hatley. Jackson has been hailed by American Theatre magazine said that Jackson is “one of the important new voices of American theatre.”
The ensemble cast, drawn from across the country, includes: Joshua Boone, Dawn-Lyen Gardner, Mark Robbins and Blair Sams. Performances begin Friday, April 24 and run through Sunday, May 24 at the Copaken Stage, downtown Kansas City. Opening night is Friday, May 1.
For “Sticky Traps,” the KC Rep plans some special events and invites patrons to attend these free show-related forums with the artists and creative teams. Before the curtain each night, there is a free pre-show conversation with the artistic staff. May 9, a scholars’ forum follows the 2 p.m. performance. A Free Playwright Slam follows the Sat. May 9 8 p.m. performance. “This community event invites the audience to participate as playwrights, actors, and cheering spectators for a night of impromptu short play readings” a Rep spokesman said. Finally, on May 10 after the matinee and again on May 13, following the 7 p.m. performance the actors will host an Actor’s Forum.
For more information about dates, times, cost, and ticketing, check the KC Rep website.