Photo Credit: Preston Burford
Created by Austin Ruffer and Neil Douglas Reilly, with words by Austin Ruffer (Executable Mother, The Fair Folk, City Horror Anthology) and Maggie Herskowitz (Monster Prom, Loch Lomond), and music by Neil Douglas Reilly (Loch Lomond; orchestrations for Clinton, Rocky, and Stars of David), this new rock show presents a twisted adaptation of The Bacchae by Euripides.
BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS uses an original rock score to bring to life the conflict between two long lost cousins, the unyielding king Pentheus and a vengeful god Dionysus, both desperately fighting to hold on to power of their kingdom. The king's strong-willed mother, Agave, and the people of Thebes are caught in the crossfire of this epic battle. How far would you go to protect your family name, and at what cost? BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS asks, is your life really yours when you’re stuck between gods and kings?
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Eason
MARCH 22, 2019
The twisted adaptation of The Bacchae continues until May 9
“What an honor to come back to performing and get to sing the most DELICIOUS and DYNAMIC rock score with this unbelievable company…..you're gonna flip out,” said Sheri Sanders (Rock The Audition, Urinetown First National Tour), who tore down the house in her long-awaited return to the New York stage as Agave, Queen mother of Thebes. Neil Douglas Reilly (Loch Lomond, Orchestrations for Clinton: The Musical, Stars of David, Rocky: Broadway), the songwriter and co-lyricist behind the show’s rock score said “It’s electrifying to have these songs performed by a cast like this–Jimmy Schumacher as the punk rock King Pentheus and Jacob Shipley as the vengeful Dionysus are absolute rockstars, and Sheri Sanders brings an energy to Agave that will absolutely tear you apart.”
“In BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS, Agave finds herself alternatively at the mercy of her rigid and unbending son King Pentheus, or else under the spell of the chaotic Dionysus, god of sex and wine. She speaks for the disenfranchised, asking how you can ever be free when you’ve got no power,” said Maggie Herskowitz (Monster Prom, Loch Lomond), co-lyricist and book writer. “Merging the modern and the ancient to breathe new life into these characters - with the help of dear friends and a phenomenal band - has been an exhilarating adventure.” Austin Ruffer, co-lyricist and book writer, said “This play has been speaking to storytellers and their audiences for 2500 years because it so viscerally captures the fear and beauty of humanity’s struggle between order and stability, and desire and animal need. It’s been thrilling to discover how it resonates here and now in with this remarkable group of artists.”
“Our company has achieved something really exciting with this staging of BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS. Every part of BEDLAM BAR on Avenue C is both the performance space and the house–there’s no in between. The actors perform in the same open space the patrons can walk through, they climb on top of the same bar the patrons are ordering drinks from, and they interact with the patrons throughout the night. They share a space, they’re part of the same community,” said producer Taylor Shubert, “The Village is where guerilla theater and Off-Off-Broadway were born in the 50s and 60s–BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS is bringing that vitality and connectivity back to theater in the Village.”
BEDLAM BAR is a storied meeting place for downtown’s nightlife community, and BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS continues that legacy. “Whether I’m behind the bar or on stage, I’m presenting the most heightened version of myself. It’s exciting to live in between both worlds while exploring this piece.” said Ryan Ortega, one of the show’s dynamic cast members, who is also an active member of the nightlife community in the Village. “We’re doing something really special in the East Village. This production and these songs truly feel like rock–the way we rehearse it, the way we perform it, and the way you’re going to get to experience it are all true to a Village rock-n-roll show,” said music producer James Dobinson (The View Upstairs), “I can’t wait to see you there!”
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Eason
The actor-musician cast and band also includes Nicholas Lerangis, Emily Iaquinta, Ryan James Ortega, Derrick Medrano, and Tristan Marzeski.
Executive produced by Taylor Shubert and Katherine M. Carter, music produced by James Dobinson, BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS is presented in a non-traditional space with an immersive staging. The show features an original rock score by Neil Douglas Reilly and words by Austin Ruffer and Maggie Herskowitz.
BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS will be produced by Our Establishment, LLC, and Neil Douglas Reilly with Kathryn Fray. Sound Design by Kevin Heard. Lighting Design by Jonathan Cottle. Costume Design by Caitlin Cisek. Stage Managed by Abigail Strange. General Manager is Kathryn Fray.
BETWEEN GODS AND KINGS is presented in agreement with Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Eason
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