Rabbit Island is a comedy about what it takes to become a real New Yorker. Coming to the city to fulfill your destiny can be as perilous as riding the Cyclone. And dating people here? Forget it. The ones who haven’t become crazy are so wrapped up in weird stuff it’s hard to have something genuine. The city can grip you and shake you for all you’re worth. Some days it seems the only choice you have is between losing your focus and losing your mind. It all turns into a Shoot the Freak game…and guess who the freak is?
Alex zigzags irregular relationships with an erratic therapist, his off-again/on-again girlfriend, an untamed burlesque dancer and The Cleanse. But what more will it take for this verbose Canadian mime to become a Real New Yorker? “When life sucks as bad as your mental health, go to Rabbit Island.”
Elephant Run District is proud to present this Coney Island-themed comedy the 2012 Frigid Festival at the Kraine Theater. Written by Chris Harcum, one of NYTheatre’s People of the Year for 2011, and directed by Aimee Todoroff, Rabbit Island stars Ethan Angelica, Carrie Heitman, Mel House, Joel Nagle, Laura Butler, and Mariko Iwasa. With an original score by Scott Garapolo, stage management by Heather Olmstead, and lighting design by Maryvel Firda, this is sure to please the outsider in all of you.
Chris Harcum (Playwright): One of NYTheatre's People of the Year and his play, Green, was published in the Indie Theatre Now Best of 2011 Collection. His full-length plays include G. Dot’s Revenge, Trading Lunches, Rabbit Island, Milk & Shelter, Instant Gratification and The Devil in Ms. Spelvin. Chris co-adapted and played the title role in a modern version of Moliere’s The Hypochondriac. As a solo performer, he has created and performed Green, Some Kind of Pink Breakfast, Gotham Standards, Anhedonia Road, Mahamudra, The Monster and the City, Weight and Weightlessness and American Badass (0r 12 Characters in Search of a National Identity). Along with his play We Haven't Told Anyone About This, these pieces have been published on Indie Theatre Now. American Badass was also published in the Plays and Playwrights 2009 anthology and The Best of the Frigid Collection. His writing has also appeared in The New York Times and NYTheatre. He is co-writing the screenplay for Meet the Hammernickys, a feature-length comedy, with the director Jason Cusato. Chris is a member of Actors’ Equity, Dramatists Guild and the League of IndependentTheater. chrisharcum.com.
Aimee Todoroff (Director): New York based actress and director. She has performed at venues across the country, was the recipient of the Sinclair Foundation Award for Excellence in Performance and is proud to have been a part of several Obie Award winning productions. Her directing work has been seen throughout NYC at locations as varied as traditional theatres, bars and found spaces. She has directed for Primary Stages, ArtEffects Theatre Company, The Metropolitan Theatre Company (2011 Obie Grant recipient), and others, and has helmed the world premieres of works by Chris Harcum (Green, We Haven’t Told Anyone About This), Nora Vetter (Details), Cusi Cram (Jump) and the East Coast premiere of Martin Blank’s The Law of Return. Aimee is the co-founder of the independent theater company Elephant Run District. aimeetodoroff.com.
Ethan Angelica (Alex): NYC credits: Peg O’ My Heart (MITF Best Musical), Those Whistling Lads (Spotlight On! Award, Outstanding Actor), Honestly Abe (Mint Theater). Regional: Theatreworks/USA (7 tours), Guthrie Theater, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, American Folklore Theatre, Lake Placid Center for the Arts. BFA from NYU/CAP21. Huge thanks to Chris and Aimee for this extraordinary show! ethanangelica.com.
Laura Butler (Elastic Girl): Laura is a New York-based actress and singer-songwriter. She trained in London with Trestle Theatre, Theatre de Complicite, Actors from the London Stage, Royal Shakespeare Company, and The New Globe. In addition to New York, she has performed with The Human Race Theatre Company, The Cleveland Playhouse, The Wexner Center, and The Dorset Theatre Festival. She has appeared in numerous films and television shows on NBC, ABC, HBO, USA Network, and MTV. She has performed in music venues all over New York, and recently released her first album, "Crushing Blue Cupcakes," a jazzy-folk delicious blend with the warmth of Norah Jones, uniqueness of Joni Mitchell, phrasing of Billie Holiday, versatility of Judy Garland, and poignancy of Edith Piaf. laurabutlernyc.com.
Carrie Heitman (Karen): Carrie has appeared Off-Broadway, regionally, and traveled extensively performing in the UK, Poland, Russia and Malaysia. Selected favorites include: Emma in Phallacy (w/Simon Jones), Sarah in The Man Who Came to Dinner (dir. Michael Sexton), Mary Beth in A Prayer For Owen Meany (U.S. Premiere PRC), Alice in Hobson’s Choice (dir. Blake Robison), Metamorphoses (dr .Joe Haj), Goneril (us) in King Lear (dir. Mark Wing-Davey), The Mystery Spot (dir. Holly Hughes) TV/Film: Lipstick Jungle, Contracts (dir. Roni Ezra, Oscar Nominee Helmer & Son) 10 Days to Paradise, A Piece of Cake, The Patriot. cheitman.wordpress.com.
Mel House (Barbara): Mel House is excited to join the Elephant Run District team on Rabbit Island. She got a taste for this magical group while collaborating on All My Sons and Uncle Vanya. She has worked in NYC and around the globe at Playwrights Horizons, Red Bull Theater Company, Ohio Theatre, New Georges, Baltimore’s Centerstage, Baltimore Shakespeare Festival, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Mel has been seen on One Life to Live, Rescue Me, and in the films Nicky Newark, 4960, Missy, Plus One, and The Film You Did Not See. She is a founding member of The Drawing Board and a
graduate of the University of Exeter’s School of Drama and the William Esper Studio. She thanks Vander and Iziah for their love, support and flexibility!
Mariko Iwasa (Usagi Sally): Born in Kanagawa, Japan. Mariko graduated Nihon Art University of Art, with a degree in Theater Acting. As an actress and dancer, she performed around Tokyo and was a Tokyo Disneyland Countdown Parade dancer in 2003. She came to NYC in 2007, wanting to convey to foreign people how her energy and personality are.....!!!!, to meet new people, and to find good dance lessons. She found many exciting, crazy fun people in NYC !!!!!! Two to three years ago she found a slapstick class in NYC that was a new world of entertainment to her, and began clown acting, physical comedy, and some simple juggling. This caused a bit of a shift change for her. She has performed in works she created at the Galapagos open variety show, New York Down Town Clown Revue, Whoa Wednesday etc. She is so glad and excited to perform with Rabbit Island. It is challenging, really. New York City is still exciting to her. By the way, everyone, she still wants to make more friends. :)
Joel Nagle (Dr. Bob): actor, writer, filmmaker. The Straitjacket, Kernel Of Sanity (Audelco Award nomination, Outstanding Ensemble Performance); M21/Bellevue, South Delancey, Henry’s Lunchroom, The Trials of MS. Katherine and Second (Plays and Playwrights 2005; Guiding Light (CBS) & All My Children (ABC), and the films The Challenger, Entropy, Say Nothing and Last Words of the Holy Ghost which has recently screened at several film festivals including: Lucerne International Film Festival in Switzerland, Aguilar Film Festival in Spain, LA Shorts Fest, Austin Film Festival, Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, Driftless Film Festival, Coney Island Film Festival and the Big Apple Film Festival. SAG-AFTRA-AEA. Many thanks to Aimee, Chris, everyone involved in this production and my life coach, B.Y.O.B.
Maryvel Bergen Firda (Lighting Design): Maryvel is thrilled to be working with Chris and Aimee again, after most recently lighting We Haven’t Told Anyone About This. Other recent designs include Woman of Manhattan for the Iron Jaw Company, Festival of the Vegetables (2010) at the Metropolitan Playhouse, and King Lear for ShakespeareNYC. Maryvel is especially happy to be back with Frigid, after collaborating with Chris for American Badass for the 2008 Festival.
Scott Garapolo (Sound Design/Original Composition): Born and raised in Oak Park, Illinois, earned a bachelor's degree in music from the University of Miami before moving to New York City. He has freelanced here, and toured nationally, as a drummer with seemingly countless bands for the last fifteen years. He now splits his musical time behind the drums and in the producer's chair, producing bands and singers and also composing music for theater, commercials and websites. Currently he is developing a deep passion for speaking of himself in the third person. Please stop by and visit at iamadrummer.com.
Heather Olmstead (Stage Manager): is tickled pink to be joining Elephant Run Productions again for another funtastic show. She has worked professionally at a handful of theatres in Ohio as well as Metropolitan Playhouse, La MaMa ETC, The Frigid Festival, The Fringe Festival and Theatre Askew's Youth Performance Experience in NYC. When not wearing black and lurking in the shadows she is playing with yarn. Much love to her family and friends for supporting her theatre habit, especially Kevin.
About the Company: Elephant Run District
Elephant Run District is a collective devoted to challenging expectations, inspiring dialogue in our community and creating long-lasting memories. Elephant Run seeks to entertain its audience at the same time it addresses social justice issues. The District is a place where traditions collide and new possibilities are explored in the hunt to create stories that are ultimately human. Like any community, The District is in a constant state of evolution, becoming more diverse and exciting as collaborators move in, set up shop and offer their creative wares to the world. Established in 2010, we have produced 2 full-length plays and various smaller projects. Our first production was hailed “a highlight of the theatrical season” by Martin Denton in 2011. elephantrundistrict. org.
Thursday, Feb. 23 at 9 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 25 at 8:30 p.m.
Monday, Feb. 27 at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 1 at 6 p.m.
Saturday, March 3 at 5:30 p.m.
Theater: Kraine Theater
Address: 85 East 4th Street
New York, NY 10003
Cost:$12 to $16
Buy Tickets Online or Call: SmartTix at 212-868-4444