Book by Doug Wright
Lyrics by Amanda Green
Music by Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green
April 27-June 17, 2012
When an auto dealership in Longview, TX launches an endurance contest, ten economically-strapped strangers embark on a journey that puts their hearts, minds and bodies to the test. The contestant that keeps at least one hand on a brand-new hardbody truck the longest gets to drive it off the lot. Featuring a brilliant rock, folk and country score from Amanda Green (Bring It On: The Musical) and Trey Anastasio (leader of the improvisational jam band Phish), extraordinary dance numbers from Benjamin Millepied (Black Swan) and a masterful story from Pulitzer Prize winner Doug Wright (I Am My Own Wife, Grey Gardens), this world premiere musical is bound to become an American classic.
By J. T. Rogers
June 12 – July 8, 2012
Blood and Gifts tells the story of the secret spy war behind the official Soviet-Afghan War of the 1980s. Spanning a decade and playing out in Washington DC, Pakistan and Afghanistan, the play offers up a slice of historical fiction laced with dark humor, as it follows the character of CIA operative Jim Warnock and his struggles to stop the Soviet Army's destruction of Afghanistan. The ground constantly shifts for Jim and his British, Russian and Pakistani counterparts as the political and personal alliances between the men keep changing. In this thrilling, high-stakes game of cat-and-mouse, Blood and Gifts depicts the unknown men who shaped one of the greatest historical events in recent history, the repercussions of which continue to shape our world.
Book and lyrics by Steven Sater
Music by Duncan Sheik
July 10 – August 5, 2012
A compelling contemporary musical based on Hans Christian Andersen's classic tale, The Nightingale tells the story of a young emperor in ancient China, whose luxurious but constricted life inside the walls of the Forbidden City is upended by the song of an extraordinary bird that lives beyond his reach. With music of Grammy- and Tony Award-winning pop composer/musician Duncan Sheik, book and lyrics by Tony and Grammy Award winner Steven Sater, and direction by Tony Award nominee and Playhouse favorite Moisés Kaufman, The Nightingale will captivate audiences with its poetic pop sensibility, while engaging them in the process of creating a brand new work.
By Denis O’Hare and Lisa Peterson
Based on Homer’s “The Iliad,” translated by Robert Fagles
August 11 – September 9, 2012
On a bare stage, a storyteller emerges from the back of the theatre to re-tell The Iliad, one of the oldest stories in Western civilization. The elements are familiar -- the 10-year siege of Troy, the Greeks and Trojans locked in a brutal combat, the heroic and final battle between Achilles and Hector. But this storyteller points at something more in the epic text. In this eye-opening version, we are on the front lines of every major war in history, reliving a futile struggle that has replayed itself over thousands of years. An Iliad transports us through time to feel the glory and honor of war -- as well as the loneliness and pain it leaves in its wake.
By David Mamet
September 18 – October 21, 2012
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for drama, Glengarry Glen Ross is David Mamet’s scorching play about a group of desperate salesmen in a Chicago real estate office. When a contest pits the men against each other, they resort to manipulation, bribery and even theft to keep their jobs. The Darwinian struggle that ensues is a stinging indictment of a culture that rewards the strong, punishes the weak and values success above all else. One of the most influential plays of the 20th century, Glengarry Glen Ross shows Mamet at the height of his literary and dramatic powers. Playhouse Artistic Director Christopher Ashley directs this modern masterpiece with a keen eye for the remarkable dialogue and personal defeat at the heart of this story.
Story by Wayne Coyne and Des McAnuff
Music and lyrics by The Flaming Lips
Yoshimi is a young Japanese artist facing the battle of her life: the battle for her life. Adrift from her family and lover, Yoshimi journeys alone into a fantastical robot-world where she wages a war with fate. Will her will to survive be powerful enough to master the evil forces that threaten to destroy her? Inspired by the whimsical and psychedelic music of Wayne Coyne and The Flaming Lips, this world premiere musical integrates music from several albums (“Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots,” “The Soft Bulletin,” “At War with the Mystics”) with Coyne and multiple Tony Award-winning director Des McAnuff’s poignant, humanistic story about the triumph of love and optimism over the mystery of our own mortality. The result is a dazzling, multi-media experience that offers an allegory of our modern battle for progressive thought and individuality in the face of blind acceptance and conformity.
For information about La Jolla Playhouse, visit www.lajollaplayhouse.org.