With a Newly Adapted Script by Renowned Polish Writer, Slawomir Mrozek
Adapted and Directed by Aimée Hayes
VITAL THEATRE COMPANY is pleased to present “THE MARTYRDOM OF PETER OHEY,” by SLAWOMIR MROZEK, adapted and directed by AIMÉE HAYES. The production begins previews Thursday, August 14th at 8 PM and opens Saturday, August 16th at 8 PM. Performances run Wednesdays through Sundays through August 29th. All performances are at 8 PM. All tickets are $15.00. For information or to reserve tickets, call (212) 592-0129 or go to www.vitaltheatre.org.Vital Theatre Company is located on Theatre Row at 432 W 42nd Street, 2nd floor, between 9th and 10th Avenues.
VITAL DIRECTIONS, a new program created to support and encourage the director’s vision. This program provides directors access to the resources necessary to mount a challenging piece of theatre. THE MARTYRDOM OF PETER OHEY inaugurates this new venture at Vital.
THE MARTYRDOM OF PETER OHEY is an Absurdist comedy by internationally famous & much produced Polish playwright, Slawomir Mrozek: A Tiger in the Bathroom! Hmm! Our faithful government MUST investigate, and “save” Peter Ohey’s family. An allegory for our times right here in the good ‘ol US of A. Scathing and fabulous, Aimee Hayes, via Mrozek's satiric script, takes aim at our Big Brother and the society that allows him his grip.
Now in his early seventies, SLAWOMIR MROZEK is an internationally produced Polish-born playwright, satirist and master of the short story. MROZEK has lived the life of an expatriate writer since 1963, returning to his homeland only in 1996. He is arguably the most produced Polish playwright in Poland and abroad, and for years he has been one of the most popular writers in Poland. The Centre for International Culture Cooperation describes his work as “exploit[ing] the grotesque, absurd exaggeration, satire, and parody with an unerring sense of the comic. At the same time, he peppers his works with themes that turn them into parables, morality tales, or philosophical experiments. He has become a part of the Polish language: particularly nonsensical everyday situations are described as ‘straight out of Mrozek.’” TANGO catapulted MROZEK onto the world stage (produced by the RSC in 1968). Other important and oft produced works include THE POLICE, THE EMIGRANTS, PARTY, and STRIPTEASE. His work sharply dissects the eternal power game, showing how we terrorize ourselves and others.
Adaptor and director AIMÉE HAYES most recently directed PEDESTRIANS by Ross Maxwell (Vital Theatre Co.; Samuel French One-Act Competition). Originally from New Orleans, Hayes lately directed at the Actors Theatre of Louisville: WALTZING DENIRO, ROSENCRANTZ AND GUILDENSTERN ARE DEAD, EYE TO EYE, BLUE WINDOW, and CARNALITY (Premiere) as well as BACK STORY (Premiere) in the Humana Festival. While working for the Shakespeare Festival at Tulane in New Orleans, Hayes directed MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING and THE ANTICIPATION/RECOLLECTION MACHINE, as well as co-directing RICHARD II and THE WINTER’S TALE with Aimee Michel. Other directing credits include: a tour of VITA AND VIRGINIA to NYC and the VA Women’s Festival, originating from the University of Mississippi, and productions of Chekhov, Mac Wellman, Shakespeare, Arthur Kopit, and others at the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans, University of Alabama, and Tulane University. As an assistant director, Hayes has worked with Jon Jory, Eddie Levi Lee, and Aimée Michel. Her education includes, among many other things, a directing internship at the Actors Theatre of Louisville with Jon Jory and master classes in playwriting with Mac Wellman at University of Alabama.
Featured in the cast are ERIK KEVER RYLE, NINA MAGNESSON, MICHAEL DOWNING, MALINDA WALFORD, KEVIN CONROY, TOM JOHNSON, LAKSH SINGH, RENE RAGAN, BRENNAN ROBERTS, ALEX LEMONIER and ANDREW LEMONIER with original music by JANE SHEPARD. Erik Kever Ryle, playing the beleaguered Peter Ohye, also starred in Vital’s OOBR Award winning production of FUNNY, presented in the 2002/2003 Season.
Now entering its sixth season, Vital Theatre Company’s main stage has seen 13 full-length productions, five short-play series and seven installments of Vital Signs Festival of New Work. Vital also presents five Vital Children’s Theatre productions each year and tours as well. Over 25,000 people have experienced a Vital play. This year, a Vital Theatre production is featured on Ellis Island where over 30,000 visitors are expected. Vital Theatre Company is a three-time winner of the Off-Off Broadway Review’s AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE. It was also named the 2002 THEATRE COMPANY OF THE YEAR by the New York Theatre Experience. Vital Theatre Company’s mission is to provide a home where the creative impulses of theatre artists can be nurtured and explored.