|The Punishing Blow
| Open: 08/13/10 Close: 08/28/10
THE YORK SHAKESPEARE COMPANYis pleased to announce the New York Premiere of Randy Cohen’s THE PUNISHING BLOW, directed by Seth Duerr,who together will be conducting Q&A sessions after every Saturday and Sunday matinee. THE PUNISHING BLOW will play a three-week limited engagement at the Kirk Theater (410 West 42nd Street address). Performances begin Friday, August 13 and continue thru Saturday, August 28. Opening Night is Friday, August 13 (8 p.m.).
PRESS IS WELCOME AT ALL PERFORMANCES
Working in the classical Actor-Manager system, Seth Duerr directs and performs infour-time Emmy Award-winner and New York Times “Ethicist” Randy Cohen’s The Punishing Blow: An Illustrated Lecture Delivered by Order of the Orange County Criminal Court. Duerr directs and plays Leslie, an anti-Semitic college professor whose court-ordered public lecture is this play. Dark, yet humorous, Leslie’s lecture transcends its purpose and becomes a reflection on the nature of hate and of the professor himself. Following the performance, both Cohen and Duerr will hold a Q&A session on this provocative one-man show.
After being arrested for drunk driving followed by an anti-Semitic rant, college professor Leslie (Duerr) can avoid jail time if he enters rehab, attends anger management classes, and gives a lecture on a figure from a list of The 100 Most Influential Jews of All Time. Rather than choose a more famous figure, such as Einstein or Moses, he picks Number 82: Daniel Mendoza, the 18th century British bare-knuckle boxing champion and father of “scientific boxing.”
In presenting the life and times of Mendoza, Leslie allows details about his personal life to creep into his monologue. The audience discovers, through quick and sardonic asides, what led him to this point, gaining insight to the professor’s tumultuous marriage, arrest, sentencing, and character. The Punishing Blow is an exploration of anti-Semitism, boxing, marriage, and of a man’s own insecurity and bitterness.
THE PUNISHING BLOWplays the following regular schedule through Sunday, August 28:
Wednesdays at 8pm
Thursdays at 8pm
Fridays at 8pm
Saturdays at 2pm
Saturdays at 8pm
Sundays at 3pm
There is an added performance on Tuesday Aug 24, 2010 at 7pm
Ticketsare $18 and are now available online at www.telecharge.com or by calling 212-239-6200. Tickets may also be purchased in-person at the Theatre Row Box Office, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily. TDF vouchers accepted.
Running Time: 84 minutes, no intermission
Talkbacks with Randy Cohen and Seth Duerr every Saturday at 2pm and Sunday at 3pm. In addition, they will join guest speakers at the following performances:
Wednesday, August 18: David Margolick, an American journalist who was a contributing editor at Condé Nast Portfolio. Before joining Portfolio, Margolick was a longtime contributing editor at Vanity Fair, where he wrote about culture, the media, and politics.
Wednesday, August 25: Binnie Klein, author ofBlows to the Head: How Boxing Changed My Mind.
Thursday, August 26: Paul Lukas, an ESPN contributor who obsesses over sleeve lengths, sock stripes, and other uniform minutiae in his Uni Watch column, and has been appearing on Page 2 since 2004.
Friday, August 27: David Rakoff, a Canadian-born writer based in New York City who is noted for his humorous, sometimes autobiographical non-fiction essays. Rakoff is an essayist, journalist and actor and is a regular contributor to Public Radio International's This American Life.