WEST ORANGE, NJ — Luna Stage recently announced that its 24th season will include three world premieres of new plays, two of which have been commissioned for the theater, and a fun twist on a timeless holiday classic.
The 2016-2017 season line up includes the world premiere of “King of the Mountains,” by Ben Clawson; “This Wonderful Life,” a one-person telling of the film “It’s A Wonderful Life” by Steve Murray; the world premiere of “Indian Head,” the newest play by Obie-Award winner Nikkole Salter; and the world premiere of “Tranquil,” by Andrew Rosendorf.
“King of the Mountains,” which will run Oct. 6 through 30, was commissioned with the support of The Dramatists Guild Foundation in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of The National Park Service. The play offers a private glimpse into the historic three-day 1903 camping trip between President Teddy Roosevelt and naturalist John Muir. It is a complex look at the ongoing battle over what to do with public lands told through the unique wit and whimsy of Luna favorite Ben Clawson.
“This Wonderful Life,” which will run Dec. 1 through 18, offers performer extraordinaire Erica Bradshaw a tour de force role. For the holiday season, Bradshaw inhabits every single role of this stage adaptation of the iconic holiday film “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
“Indian Head,” which runs Feb. 2 through March 5, 2017, was commissioned by the NJPAC Stage Exchange. In a story ripped from the headlines, “Indian Head” provides a window into the perspective of a young Lenape girl as she grapples with the effects of her anti-mascot activism and ultimately is forced to consider the cost of reclaiming dignity.
“Tranquil,” which runs April 13 through May 13, 2017, closes the theater’s 2016-2017 season. Paralyzed in the car accident that claimed her mother’s life, 17-year-old Ellen is determined to experience all her teenage years have to offer. But when the past comes knocking on the door — in the form of Ellen’s brother — her small family’s delicate balance is upended. In a home awash with anger, guilt and Ellen’s raging hormones, “Tranquil” is a raw exploration of one shattered family striving to be whole again.
Luna Stage is located at 555 Valley Road in West Orange. Season passes are now on sale and can be purchased at lunastage.org, or at the box office Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Or call 973-395-5551.