SHAKESPEARE THEATRE COMPANY ANNOUNCES BOOK CLUB SERIES FOR 2019/20 SEASON, BEGINNING WITH RABBIT CAKE BY ANNIE HARTNETT TO ACCOMPANY EVERYBODY BY BRANDEN JACOBS-JENKINS

2 October 2019, Washington, D.C.: On Tuesday November 5, the Shakespeare Theatre Company will host a free Book Club discussion for Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett in The Forum at Sidney Harman Hall (610 F St. NW) from 6 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. for interested readers. STC’s Book Club series aims to offer new perspectives on the themes, characters, and playwrights that are featured on-stage in the upcoming 2019/20 season. STC welcomes book lovers and theatre lovers alike to discuss the featured book over a glass of wine with Shakespeare Theatre Company staff. This event is open to the public; no ticket purchase is necessary.

The first featured book Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett perfectly echoes the existentially comedic tone of Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ Everybody, and Book Club attendees have the opportunity to put these two works in conversation by also seeing the 7:30 p.m. performance of Everybody at the Lansburgh Theatre on November 5 (tickets for the performance must be purchased separately). Readers will delight in Annie Hartnett’s debut, a darkly comic novel about a young girl named Elvis trying to figure out her place in a world without her mother. Elvis is a truly original voice in an exploration of grief, family, and the endurance of humor after loss. Rabbit Cake has been named Best Book of 2017 at Kirkus Reviews, Book Riot, The Chicago Review of Books, and more. The Boston Globe praises: “DARKLY FUNNY AND SOULFUL….Rabbit Cake is an unpredictable story of healing, and the young woman at its center is immediately lovable because she is delightfully human.”  

This will be the first of five Book Club sessions throughout our season. During the summer, STC staff nominated books pertaining to five of the season’s plays, narrowing the many worthy options to three books per play within the Company. In a public poll shared online, the books with the most votes were officially selected to accompany STC’s productions for the season.  “New stories, old stories and classics are all in this book club season,” STC’s Book Club Coordinator and Audience Enrichment Manager LeeAnet Noble elaborates. “I am most excited about the wide range of books inspired by the variety of our plays this season. I can’t wait to read them all.”

The official Book Club listing is as follows:

Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett, November 5 at 7:30pm

Inspired by Everybody by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins playing October 15 -November 17, 2019 at The Lansburgh Theatre. http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/everybody-19-20/

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson, January 7 at 7:30 pm

Inspired by Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie, adapted by Lauren Gunderson, playing December 3, 2019-January 12, 2020 at Sidney Harman Hall. http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/peter-pan-19-20/

Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin, March 3 at 7:30pm

Inspired by The Amen Corner by James Baldwi,n playing February 11- March 15, 2020 at Sidney Harman Hall. http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/the-amen-corner-19-20/

Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel, May 12 at 7:30pm

Inspired by Romantics Anonymous by Emma Rice, lyrics by Christopher Dimond, music by Michael Kooman, playing April 7 -May 17, 2020 at the Lansburgh Theatre. http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/romantics-anonymous-19-20/

Beatrice and Benedick by Marina Fiorato, June 9 at 7:30pm

Inspired by Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare, playing May 5- June 14, 2020 at Sidney Harman Hall. http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/much-ado-about-nothing-19-20/

About EVERYBODY:

“One of this country’s most original and illuminating writers” (The New York Times) shines his light on the 15th-century play Everyman with startling results. Everybody—a role assigned each night from a small cast of actors by lottery live on stage—is a happy person, a free person, a person who believes nothing but the best lies ahead. Then Death comes calling and Everybody must go on the journey of a lifetime. Obie Award winner and MacArthur “Genius” Grant recipient Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (An Octoroon) has created an irreverent, rollicking ride that asks deep questions of all who see it. Remixing the archetypal medieval morality play into an explosive experiment of wit and emotion, Everybody “fills the heart in a new and unexpected way” (The New Yorker).

Everybody will be on stage at the Lansburgh Theatre from October 15 to November 17. Tickets are $35 – $120. For more information, please see the website: http://www.shakespearetheatre.org/events/everybody-19-20/

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