For Members of the Press

August 1st, 2011 | CF Monkey | No Comments

Click here for THE BEREAVED media page with promotional images.
Click here for 410[GONE] media page with promotional images.      

Click here for THE TAMING media page with promotional images.







THE BEREAVED by Thomas Bradshaw- April 4-27  (Press Opening April 8)

410[GONE] by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, – June 6-29 (Press Opening June 10)

THE TAMING by Lauren Gunderson – October 3-26 (Press Opening October 7)

Thick House

1695 18th St, San Francisco.

2013 Season Press Release (Click to download Season Press Release in PDF format.)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Contact: David Hyry (415) 864-3547

Crowded Fire Theater (CFT) kicked off the 2013 Season with the Matchbox Reading Series (MBRS) playing to capacity houses  January 28 – February 5, at CFT’s new home the Thick House, a theater in San Francisco. MBRS featured new works by three extraordinary local playwrights, Christopher Chen, Lauren Gunderson, and Geetha Reddy, and by the internationally acclaimed Australian playwright, Lachlan Philpott. Committed to diversifying the canon of contemporary plays, Crowded Fire champions playwrights whose work offers a vital contribution to the American theater landscape.  

“We believe art is always political,” states Crowded Fire Artistic Director Marissa Wolf, “ in order to move toward a more just society, theaters must offer a wider range of aesthetics and voices on our stages.”  The 2013 Season productions reflect the social, the personal, and the political. Crowded Fire Theater’s Mainstage season launches in April with the West Coast Premiere of THE BEREAVED a wickedly funny take on Sex, Drugs, and the American Dream by Thomas Bradshaw (April 4-27  Opening April 8) staged by Marissa Wolf. The summer begins with the world premiere of 410[GONE] a frenetic and richly poetic look at the bonds of love between siblings in a landscape ruled by the Goddess of Mercy and  Monkey King by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig (June 6-29, Opening June 10) directed by Evren Odcikin. The season concludes in October with the The World Premiere of  Lauren Gunderson’s THE TAMING (October 3-26 Opening October 7) a Crowded Fire commission directed by Marissa Wolf, The Taming is a mashup of America’s cracked political rhetoric and the sexy power play of Shakespeare’s Shrew. “Southern Fried Politics.”  

All three playwrights in this 2013 Season have participated in CFT’s Matchbox Readings Series, with these productions receiving development support through Crowded Fire. The Matchbox: Commissioning and Developing New Plays grew out of CFT’s commitment to the playwrights’ revision processes, to strengthen the scripts before rehearsals for the professional productions began. The Matchbox programming includes three different initiatives, including Commissions, in-house Workshops, and slots in the annual Matchbox Readings Series — public staged readings of plays in development.  

Lauren Gunderson whose THE TAMING was commissioned and developed through The Matchbox, says of The Matchbox, “I have worked in many new play development settings across the country, but the support, standards, and deep commitment to using San Francisco as a launching pad for work that ignites the country’s new play sphere is real and it’s at Crowded Fire. They aren’t just doing readings to satisfy they are truly developing and committing to new plays, many by women and by local Bay Area writers. I don’t need to tell you how important this is, but I can tell you that when I travel and speak with theater colleagues nationwide, everyone knows Crowded Fire.”  

Programming in Crowded Fire’s 2013 Season is funded by generous support from The Dramatists Guild (THE BEREAVED), The National Endowment for the Arts (THE TAMING), the San Francisco Foundation (The Matchbox), The Tournesol Foundation (THE TAMING), and Venturous Theater Fund (THE BEREAVED). Crowded Fire gratefully acknowledges general operations funding from Grants for the Arts/SF Hotel Tax Fund and The Kenneth Rainin Foundation.  


THE BEREAVED by Thomas Bradshaw,   In this West Coast Premiere of Thomas Bradshaw’s THE BEREAVED the wife and breadwinner Carol realizes she is on borrowed time. Before she goes, you can be damn sure she will put her affairs in order. After all, what is more important than being certain her family maintain their upper-class-private-school Manhattan lifestyle? Ferocious, startling, and unsettling, THE BEREAVED is a dark, gleaming comedy exposing the blithe entitlement of upper-middle-class America alongside the feral appetites and violent prejudices roiling just beneath the surface.  

410[GONE] by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig,   Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig‘s  World Premiere of 410[GONE] is a journey into a frenetic landscape ruled by the Goddess of Mercy and the Monkey King, where time is suspended, and Dance Dance Revolution holds the key to Transmigration.  Filled with richly poetic language, 410[GONE] looks at the bonds of love between siblings when a sister searches for her lost brother in the Chinese Land of the Dead.  

THE TAMING by Lauren Gunderson   Southern Fried Politics…The third installment in Gunderson’s “Revenge Comedies,” THE TAMING is a mash-up of America’s cracked political rhetoric and the sexy power play of Shakespeare’s Shrew with the help of some choice pharmaceuticals and a sweet singing’ beauty queen. Hey, ya’ll can we talk? A Crowded Fire commission also featured in this year’s Matchbox Reading Series.  


Thomas Bradshaw (THE BEREAVED) – Thomas Bradshaw’s play BURNING was produced off-Broadway by the New Group in the Fall of 2011. His play JOB was produced by The Flea Theater in Fall 2012. As a result of that sold-out run the play returns to New York in January 2013. He is also the author of MARY, which premiered at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre in 2010; THE ASHES; THE BEREAVED, which was named one of the Best Plays of 2009 by Time Out New York and was a New York Times Critics’ Pick; and SOUTHERN PROMISES and DAWN, both listed among the Best Performances of Stage and Screen for 2008 in The New Yorker. Bradshaw has been featured as one of Time Out New York’s ten playwrights to watch, and as Best Provocative Playwright in the Village Voice. He is the recipient of a 2009 Guggenheim Fellowship, the 2010 Prince Charitable Trust Prize, The Lark’s NVNY Fellowship for 2011, and the 2012 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Award. He is creating a television series for HBO and Harpo Films. Bradshaw is also a Professor at Northwestern University.  

Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig  (410[GONE]) – Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig’s play LIDLESS received the Yale Drama Series Award, an Edinburgh Fringe First Award, the Keene Prize for Literature, and the David Calicchio Emerging American Playwright Prize. In 2011 she was awarded the Wasserstein Prize by the Educational Foundation of America for her most recent work, THE WORLD OF EXTREME HAPPINESS. Her plays have been produced by the Goodman Theatre, Trafalagar Studios 2 on the West End, Page 73 Productions in New York, Interact Theatre in Philadelphia, Borderlands Theatre in Tucson, and the Contemporary American Theatre Festival in West Virginia. She has received commissions from South Coast Rep and Seattle Rep. Frances received an MFA in Writing from the James A. Michener Center for Writers at UT Austin, a BA in Sociology from Brown University, and a certificate in Ensemble Created Physical Theatre from the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre. Her work has been published by Yale University Press, Glimmer Train, Methuen Drama, Samuel French, and Dramatists Play Service. Frances was born in Philadelphia, and raised in Northern Virginia, Okinawa, Taipei and Beijing.  

Lauren Gunderson (THE TAMING) – Lauren Gunderson is an award-winning playwright living in San Francisco. She studied at Emory University and NYU’s Tisch School of Performing Arts, where she was a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. Her work has been produced and developed at companies across the U.S., including South Coast Rep (EMILIE, SILENT SKY), The Kennedy Center (THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF DR. WONDERFUL AND HER DOG!), Playwrights Foundation, The Lark, and The O’Neill (FIRE WORK). EMILIE: LA MARQUISE DU CHATELET DEFENDS HER LIFE TONIGHT is published with Sam French. The first play in her Shakespeare Series, EXIT, PURSUED BY A BEAR is published with Playscripts. Her second in the Shakes Series, TOIL AND TROUBLE, premiered last year at Impact. BY AND BY will premiere at Shotgun Players this May. She is currently under commission with SF Playhouse, Crowded Fire, and South Coast Rep and is working on a musical with Harry Connick Jr. She has spoken nationally and internationally on the intersection of science and theater. She is a Playwright in Residence at The Playwrights Foundation, and a proud Dramatists Guild member. More on Lauren   For Calendar Editors   THE BEREAVED  West Coast Premiere by Thomas Bradshaw Directed by Marissa Wolf Presented April 4-27  (Press Opening April 8)   410[GONE]  World Premiere by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig Directed by Evren Odcikin Presented June 6-29 (Press Opening June 10)   THE TAMING  World Premiere by Lauren Gunderson Directed By Marissa Wolf Presented October 3-26 (Press Opening October 7)  


THE BEREAVED by Thomas Bradshaw- April 4-27  (Press Opening April 8)
410[GONE] by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, – June 6-29 (Press Opening June 10)
THE TAMING by Lauren Gunderson – October 3-26 (Press Opening October 7)  

WHERE: Thick House, 1695 18th St, San Francisco.(between Carolina St.& Arkansas St. in Portrero Hill )  

PERFORMANCES: Wed-Saturdays 8 PM
With Special Opening Night Performances on Mondays, 8PM Tickets: Prices range from $10-$35 progressively during the course of the run. We offer Pay-What-You-Can Preview performances and student/senior/group rates. Tickets: Visit for more information and to purchase tickets.   Box Office by phone (415) 746-9238 or (415) 655-3866  


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