*National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere*
DONNIE and RAYMOND are best friends (don’t tell RAYMOND that, though). They’re also becoming fathers. Looking at the dads they’ve seen and grown up with, though, this doesn’t seem the best proposition. Maninars, Primal Screams and therapy sessions fill their night in RAYMOND’S basement as they wonder how to be the men they need to for the women upstairs. The women who changed their lives before and if this night has anything to say about it, might just do it again!
2M. Single Set.
Riverside Theatre, Iowa City IA
Salt Lake Acting Company, SLC UT
Actor’s Summit, Akron OH
“”Brilliant…pregnant belly-laugh hilarious, with just enough heart-breaking moments to keep it grounded…The show’s world premiere opened to roars, cheers, whistles and an immediate standing ovation Friday night”– Cedar Rapids Gazette/Hoopla
”Outrageous, insightful and above all very, very funny.”– Iowa Theatre
“Hit the audience’s collective funny bone.”- Salt Lake Tribune
“(Critic’s Pick) Charming and satisfying…Lewis is savvy enough to recognize that there’s no simple dichotomy between Dad the Protector and Dad the Nurturer…with his snappy dialogue, Manning Up manages to find rich human comedy in figuring out that there’s a particular courage in deciding you’ve got what it takes to do the best you can.” City Weekly
“Manning Up is a funny, delightful play, one that will certainly spark debate and conversations about manliness and parenthood as it receives more and more productions. This is Lewis’s first foray into pure comedy, and it is a successful endeavor.”- Utah Theater
“Highly recommended”- Cleveland Examiner
“Lewis knows his subject well…evokes laughter by pulling out the ridiculousness of the plight of a modern suburban man”- Broadway World
“Sweet and funny… Manning Up is a life-affirming, often poignant exploration of men’s insecurities as they face the uncontrollable uncertainties of first-time fatherhood… an emotionally heartfelt comedy.” – Kerry Clawson Beacon Journal
“The show may be billed as a comedy, but the playwright brings some serious topics to the stage. People leave the theater talking about more than where they parked the car…“Manning Up” brings new thoughts and actions to a local stage. I urge my readers to enjoy this production.”- Akron News Leader
“The play is a pathway to self-discovery, maturity, and acceptance… the intimate two-hander upends traditional notions of manhood, gender roles and male bonding.” -Cleveland Jewish Times
“Warm and funny”- Stow Sentry
Buy the book from Original Works Online.
Synopsis: Set in modern Iraq, this savage contemporary fable ignites when a pair of American soldiers return from a routine surveillance detail covered in blood. The barracks are no safe haven. The Captain fights to control his troops as they walk the high-wires of a secret homosexual affair, the sexual abuse of a female soldier, a missing Iraqi boy, and a baby found in the desert, ala Moses. This play explores how violence begets violence, lies beget lies, truth is born from trust, and understanding war makes as much sense as sand raining from the heavens.
Halcyon Theatre, Chicago
Know Theatre, Cincinnati
Bang and Clatter, Cleveland
National Center for New Plays, Stanford University
HOTINK! Festival of New Plays, NYC
Theater for the New City, NYC
10.15.08 City Beat, Cincinnati
“Critic’s Pick… a searing outcome, demonstrating the troublesome repetition of violence that begets more violence”
10.20.08 Onion A.V. Club Interview
10.30.08 Time Out Chicago
“Lewis’s proposition — that unfamiliar terrain can turn our moral judgment topsy-turvy — is intriguing, and there are moments of transcendence.”
10.30.0810.20.08 Chicago Reader
“Highly Recommended… a fascinating, disturbing evening”
11.14.08 Chicago Stage Review
“compelling, vital and exciting …”
Cleveland Public Theatre
NY International Fringe Festival
Winner of the Kennedy Center’s inaugural Rosa Parks Award for Social Justice in Playwriting.
“An engaging two-person drama”- Time Out NY
“A very poignant drama”- New York Amsterdam News
“Harsh and intriguing”- Talkin Off Broadway
“Visceral… compelling… fascinating to think about and discuss”- Cleveland Free Times
“Signals the arrival of a promising political playwright”- Cleveland Jewish News
The Aperture takes audiences on a wild journey that explores America’s fetishizing of global turbulence, violence and race. Halfway between dream and reality the piece explores the relationship of an American artist trying to save a boy soldier from Uganda. In this world premiere production, two actors play six parts in an energetic and insightful expose.
Sean on NPR in Cleveland discussing the play:
A great article about the play at Child Soldier Relief:
2006 ArtSpark Festival, Austin TX
Written and Directed by Sean Christopher Lewis and Cristina Pippa
A multimedia play based on the story of a woman from rural Michigan who left her family at the onset of the Iraq War to go and serve as a medic in the US Army. Intertwining video, facebook, myspace, slam poetry and straight ahead theater the piece examines a family turned upside down when the matriarch of the group sets off to “finally do something important.” A play about patriotism, family and how we value ourselves.
THE GONE CHAIR
Penn State University’s Cultural Conversations Festival
Openstage Harrisburg’s Flying Solo Festival
What happens when a child does something so horrific that he has to be sent away? What do you do when you are that child’s parent? Based on actual cases and fictionalized into the story of a single man searching for his emotionally disturbed son- THE GONE CHAIR- tells the story of Martin Dregger a mild mannered every day father in the Pacific Northwest. When his son is sent away to a boot camp for children with violent tendencies Martin is left to ask if his own past has led to his son’s problems. And when his son goes missing… Martin is pushed into the middle of a storm trying to discover who’s to blame when the entire world seems pretty sick.