The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois
by Adam Rapp
directed by Crispin Whittell
WORLD PREMIERE
NICHOLAS STUDIO
April 23, 2014 - May 4, 2014

Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois

Ellis Shook lives alone in a small duplex apartment in Paducah, Kentucky. He works nights buffing floors, keeps to himself—and always remembers to take his medication. But when two teenage girls arrive at his doorstep one autumn afternoon, their visit will force him to confront a tragic past while also offering him a glimpse at hope.

Previews: April 23-24, 2014
Opening Night: April 25, 2014
Regular Performances: April 26- May 4, 2014

Recommendation: This play contains adult language and situations. High school and above.

Running Time: Approximately 80 minutes with no intermission.

Please Note: No Late Seating
The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois is performed without scene breaks or intermission in our Nicholas Studio. Due to the theatre’s configuration—the entry door opens at stage left—late seating will not be permitted to avoid disruption to the actors and seated audience members. We appreciate your understanding. You may speak with a Ticket Services staff member if you have any questions.

Adam Rapp is an Obie Award-winning playwright and director. He is the author of numerous plays, which include Nocturne (American Repertory Theater, New York Theatre Workshop), Finer Noble Gases (26th Humana Festival, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), Stone Cold Dead Serious (A.R.T.), Blackbird (Bush Theatre), Essential Self-Defense and Kindness (Playwrights Horizons), The Metal Children (Vineyard Theatre), The Hallway Trilogy (Rattlestick), The Edge of Our Bodies (36th Humana Festival), Dreams of Flying Dreams of Falling (Atlantic Theater Company) and Red Light Winter (Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Barrow Street Theatre), which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. In 2006, his production of Finer Noble Gases garnered a Fringe First Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he received the List Magazine/Writers’ Guild of Great Britain’s Best Newcomer Prize. Other playwriting honors include the Helen Merrill Prize, the 2006 Princess Grace Statue, a Lucille Lortel Playwrights’ Fellowship, the Benjamin H. Danks Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation Award.

Cast
William Apps
William Apps as Ellis. Apps is making his SCR debut. He professional actor based in New York City. His theatre credits include True West at Actors Theatre of Louisville, Bad and the Better at Playwrights Horizons, Hallway Trilogy at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, Happy in the Poorhouse at PS 122, Ghosts in the Cottonwoods at Theater 80 St. Marks. His film credits include Regretting Fish (Cadillac Films).

Connor Barrett
Connor Barrett as Barrett. Barrett is making his SCR debut. He previously worked with Adam Rapp off-Broadway, regionally and internationally on two of Rapp’s other plays: Finer Noble Gases at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company; Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre; Bush Theater, London; and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where the production won the Fringe First Award; and The Metal Children at Vineyard Theatre, NYC. Most recently, Barrett played Saul Kimmer in Adam Rapp’s production of the Sam Shepard play True West at Actors Theatre of Louisville. His other regional credits include the Geva Theatre, McCarter Theatre Center and Williamstown Theatre Festival. His other New York credits include the Summer Play Festival and the New York Fringe Festival. His film and television credits include “You’re Whole” (Adult Swim), “Parks and Recreation,” “CSI: NY,” “Harry’s Law,” Razzle Dazzle (Funny or Die), “Rita Rocks,” “Do Not Disturb,” “The Jury” and “Guiding Light.” Barrett received his BFA from Northwestern University and his MFA from New York University’s Graduate Acting Program.

Christina Elmore
Christina Elmore as Monique. Elmore is making her SCR debut. She is a recent graduate of American Conservatory Theater’s MFA program, where her favorite roles included Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Olga in Three Sisters, and Woman in Will Eno’s The Flu Season. Her regional credits include Belle in ACT’s A Christmas Carol, Marianne in Sacramento Theater Company’s Tartuffe and writer/ensemble member in the Guthrie Theater’s Going Live, part of the Guthrie Experience for actors in training. Now based in Los Angeles, she can be seen in last year’s Sundance Grand Jury Prize winning film, Fruitvale Station and as regular a on TNT’s new series, “The Last Ship” premiering on June 22.

Virginia Veale
Virginia Veale as Catherine. Veale is making her SCR debut. She is a Juilliard School graduate and recipient of the 2012 John Houseman Award for showing excellence in the classics. She appeared most recently in Five Very Pretty Girls (New York Theatre Workshop), Barefoot in the Park (Bucks County Playhouse), My Children! My Africa! and All My Sons. Her recent film credits include Harmony Hill, Hotline and Awkward Moments. Veale is the co-founder of the breakout sketch series “Don’t Talk In The Kitchen.” The series’ most recent episode was awarded as one of the top 25 videos of 2013 by Funny Or Die.

Creative Team
Crispin Whittell (Director) was born in Kenya, studied English literature at Cambridge University and lives in Los Angeles. He has written and directed numerous plays, including Villa America (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Clever Dick (Hampstead Theatre), Happy Valley (Liverpool Everyman), Killing Her (Old Red Lion), Killing Him (Pleasance, Edinburgh) and his adaptation of Martin Amis’s novel Success (Pleasance, Edinburgh), which was shortlisted for The Guardian Award. His other plays/adaptations include The Primrose Path (Guthrie Theater), A Christmas Carol (Guthrie Theater), Party Tricks (Nottingham Playhouse) and Darwin in Malibu (Birmingham Repertory Theatre), which was nominated for a TMA Award for Best New Play. He translated Rafael Spregelburd’s play Stupidity (“La Estupidez”) for the National Theatre Studio. His other directing credits include Dissonance (Falcon Theatre) and Danny Boy (Etcetera Theatre). He is under commission to write the book and lyrics for a new musical based on Goldsmith’s She Stoops to Conquer for the Guthrie Theater.

Sara Ryung Clement (Scenic/Costume Design) returns to SCR where her recent pro-jects include costumes for 4000 Miles, sets and costumes for The Night Fairy and How the World Began, and the set design for Absurd Person Singular. Her additional regional and local design credits include East West Players, Open Fist Theatre Company, TheatreWorks, Cornerstone Theater Company, Denver Center Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, CenterStage, A Noise Within, Marin Theatre Company, SPF, Elephant Theatre Company and Deaf West Theatre. Clement holds a MFA in design from the Yale School of Drama and received her AB from Princeton University.

Adam J. Frank (Lighting Design) returns to SCR, where he designed Cattywampus and Ameryka for Studio SCR. His designs have been produced at Syracuse Opera, Merry-Go-Round Playhouse, REDCAT, The Theatre@Boston Court, A Noise Within, CalArts, USC, The New School of Drama and Columbia University. Frank is most proud of designing Waterwell’s Goodbar at The Public Theater in New York City. His commercial designs and programming include events at Universal Studio’s Hollywood, Walt Disney Studio’s El Capitan, Six Flags, Ford Amphitheater, Mandalay Bay Resort, Fox News and the Hollywood Palladium. He assisted at the LA Opera, Geffen Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, Tri-Cities Opera, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, New York Shakespeare Festival and on Broadway. He earned his MFA from CalArts.

Corinne Carrillo (Sound Design) is currently the audio supervisor at SCR. She also served as the resident sound designer for the Laguna Playhouse for three seasons. Some of her sound designs include Shirley Valentine, Private Lives, Marvelous Wonderettes: Caps and Gowns, Plaid Tidings, Chapter Two, Having It All and Steel Magnolias. She is the resident sound designer for Breath of Fire Latina Theater Ensemble, for whom she designed the world premiere of Angel of the Desert at SCR. She has designed two world premiere musicals at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Unfortunates and The Cocoanuts. She is currently in production at Cal State University Northridge’s production of Electricidad. Carrillo is also thrilled to be a part of SCR’s own Dialogue/Diálogos production of The Long Road Today/ El Largo Camino Hoy in September. She is a graduate of UC Irvine’s MFA program in sound design.

Kelly L. Miller (Dramaturg) is the literary director of SCR and the co-director of the Pacific Playwrights Festival. Regionally, she has worked at Actors Theatre of Louisville, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and as the literary manager of Long Wharf Theatre and Playscripts, Inc. In 2008, she co-founded Creative Destruction, a company dedicated to the support of playwrights and the development of new work. Her favorite dramaturgy at SCR includes Fast Company, The Parisian Woman, The Whale, How to Write a New Book for the Bible, The Prince of Atlantis, Completeness, Circle Mirror Transformation, Becky Shaw, Doctor Cerberus, Saturn Returns and Emilie; Big Love, War of the Worlds and Creditors (Actors Theatre of Louisville); Hearts, Wintertime and Going Native (Long Wharf Theatre). Miller has worked as a freelance consultant for The O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, The Playwrights’ Center, The Public Theater, Huntington Theatre Company, New Dramatists, NEA/Arena Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, PlayPenn, Carnegie Mellon and The Kennedy Center.

Ashley Boehne Ehlers (Stage Manager) received her MFA in stage management from UC Irvine and her BA in theatre and history from Murray State University in Ky. She currently teaches stage management at CSULB and is also the production manager for the Theatre Department. She is excited to return to SCR, where she served as a stage management intern six years ago. Her recent work includes The Morini Strad (The Colony Theatre, West Coast Premiere), Spring Awakening, LA Intimate Cast Premiere (Over the Moon Productions with four Ovation Nominations) and this summer, Singin’ in the Rain (Broadway in the Park). Ehlers is also a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.
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From the Blog
Purple Lights GroupFrom Africa to America: Director and Playwright Crispin Whittell
Crispin Whittell's early life was globally shaped, the opposite of the characters in the play he’s directing, The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois. Born in Kenya, Whittell is now based in Los Angeles. read more
Adam RappFinding Hope in The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois
Adam Rapp is in demand as a playwright, screenwriter and author of young adult fiction. Take a look at his work, including SCR’s premiere of The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois.read more
Cast For The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois May Be New, But Known
Four actors make their SCR debut in Adam Rapp’s new work, The Purple Lights of Joppa Illinois. But you may recognize them from other places—television, film and stage.read more