South Coast Repertory to Premiere Julia Cho’s Office Hour
Sandra Oh Leads Cast
COSTA MESA, Calif. (Nov. 23, 2015) South Coast Repertory announced today that Office Hour, a commissioned work by Julia Cho, will receive its world premiere April 10-30, 2016, the slot previously listed as TBA. Stage, film and television actor Sandra Oh will lead the cast in performances that will be directed by Neel Keller on the Julianne Argyros Stage, as part of the Pacific Playwrights Festival. Tickets are available at www.scr.org.
Office Hour is set on a university campus, where one student sits in the back of the classroom, wearing dark glasses, a baseball cap pulled down low…never speaking. His creative writing assignments are violent, twisted—and artless. He scares the other students. He scares the teachers. The kid is trouble. Or is he just mixed up, using his writing to vent, provoke, maybe even protect himself? Gina is the only teacher willing to get close. But at what risk?
“Julia Cho has crafted a tense and riveting drama that draws on the threat of campus violence and challenges audiences to empathize with both student and teacher. She encourages us to try to understand people unlike ourselves,” said Artistic Director Marc Masterson. “With a play like Office Hour, we have the ability to find a deeper understanding and connection to someone who might be struggling with issues of violence or the threat of it. Julia’s play lets us see it in a very real, personal way.”
Office Hour is the third world premiere by Cho at SCR, after The Piano Teacher (2007) and The Language Archive ( 2009).
Cho’s full-length plays—including Durango, The Winchester House, BFE, The Architecture of Loss and 99 Histories—have been produced by numerous companies including New York’s Roundabout Theatre Company, The Public Theater, Vineyard Theatre, Playwrights Horizons and New York Theatre Workshop and regionally at Long Wharf Theatre, South Coast Repertory, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and The Theatre @ Boston Court. Her play, Aubergine, will have its world premiere at Berkeley Repertory Theatre in February and March 2016. She has received multiple honors including the Susan Smith Blackburn Award for The Language Archive, the National Theater Conference’s Barrie Stavis Award, the Claire Tow Award for Emerging Artists and the L. Arnold Weissberger Award for Playwriting. She has been the recipient of a New York Foundation for The Arts grant and a Van Lier Fellowship from New York Theatre Workshop. She also was a Lila Acheson Wallace Playwriting Fellow at The Juilliard School and a resident at New Dramatists.
Oh’s work on the stage includes the world premieres of Satellites and Stop Kiss by Diana Son (Public Theater) and Dog Eaters by Jessica Hagedorn (La Jolla Playhouse), in addition to The Vagina Monologues, off-Broadway. Her film and television credits include “Grey’s Anatomy,” Sideways, Under the Tuscan Sun, Last Night, The Red Violin and Dancing at the Blue Iguana.
ABOUT SOUTH COAST REPERTORY: Tony Award-winning South Coast Repertory, founded in 1964 by David Emmes and Martin Benson, is widely recognized as one of the leading professional theatres in the United States. While its productions represent a balance of classic and modern theatre, SCR is renowned for its extensive new-play development program, which includes the nation’s largest commissioning program for emerging and established writers. One-quarter of SCR’s 525 productions have been world premieres. SCR-developed works have garnered two Pulitzer Prizes and eight Pulitzer nominations, several Obie Awards and scores of major new-play awards. Located in Costa Mesa, Calif., SCR is home to the 507-seat Segerstrom Stage, the 336-seat Julianne Argyros Stage and the 94-seat Nicholas Studio. www.scr.org