Monday, October 03, 2005

Tucson: ATC presents BAD DATES


From: Arizona Theatre Company
Sent: Monday, October 03, 2005 6:16 AM
Subject: Make a Great Date With BAD DATES

For Immediate Release

October 3, 2005

April Brown, 520.884.8210 x 8205


Arizona Theatre Company stages hit Off-Broadway comedy about looking for
love in all the wrong places

"Cholesterol Man." "Bug Guy." No, they're not lackluster superheroes, just
two in a hilarious-and eerily familiar-series of bad dates for single mom
Haley Walker, the charismatic heroine in Arizona Theatre Company's
uproarious production of Bad Dates. Written by Theresa Rebeck and making its
Tucson premiere, Bad Dates runs from October 22 through November 12 at the
Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave., in downtown Tucson and continues
its run in Phoenix from November 17 though December 4 at the Herberger
Theater Center. The production underwriters for Bad Dates are Bette and
Gerald Zatuchni. The 2005-2006 season underwriters are I. Michael and Beth

Haley Walker is a New Yorker by way of Texas who has worked her way up in
the restaurant business from waitress to manager. In between raising her 12
year-old daughter, admiring her 600 pairs of shoes, and managing a hot new
Manhattan restaurant, Haley decides to plunge back into the romance scene,
and the story opens with her preparations for her first date in some five
years. As Haley shares one disastrous date after another, the audience
follows her career successes and failures, her brushes with Zen Buddhism and
the Romanian mob, and her steady pursuit of discounted designer shoes that
audiences will find fills the void left by the very popular, recently
departed Sex and the City.

Beneath Haley's sole-searching, playwright Theresa Rebeck has created a
character that she hopes the audience will admire, despite the character's
failing. "The more I worked on her, the more I wished that I was this
character," said Rebeck. "She makes some very questionable choices, but I
feel that she is determined not to be a victim, not to fall to the
vicissitudes of life. She refuses to be squashed by her own mistakes. She

ATC audiences will find themselves in a more direct relationship to the
action than they often experience at the theatre. "Bad Dates is part play,
part story, and a story needs not only to be told, but also heard," said
director Aaron Posner, making his ATC debut. "In this sense, the audience is
cast as our heroine's friend and confidant."

"The universal delight that has greeted Bad Dates in the many productions
around the country over the last two years is really no surprise. Everyone
at some time has experienced the joys and horrors of trying to make a love
connection," Artistic Director David Ira Goldstein said, "But what Theresa
Rebeck has so masterfully accomplished in Bad Dates is to take those
universal feelings and ground them in the achingly real details of one
particular, very real woman. We can't help but root for Haley Walker because
she never lies to us about her feelings. Her passions, and, of course, her
deep abiding love for designer shoes purchased at bargain prices."

Theresa Rebeck's first published play, Spike Heels (1992), was produced at
Second City Stage in New York with Kevin Bacon and Tony Goldwyn in the
principal roles. In 2003, her play Ominum Gatherum, co-written with
Alexandra Gersten-Vassilaros, was a hit at the Humana Festival in Louisville
and went on to become a Pulitzer Prize for Drama finalist. Her many other
playwriting credits include The Bells (2005), Dollhouse (2000), Abstract
Expression, View of the Dome, Sunday on the Rocks, The Family of Mann and
The Two Orphans.

Ms. Rebeck is also acclaimed for her writing for TV and film. Her work on
NYPD Blue won the Writer's Guild of America Award for Episodic Drama, the
Hispanic Images Imagine Award, and a Peabody Award. Her further television
credits include the HBO series Dream On, Brooklyn Bridge, Third Watch, and
L.A. Law, and she was a co-executive producer and writer of Law & Order:
Criminal Intent. Her film work includes writing credits for Harriet the Spy,
Gossip and Catwoman.

Aaron Posner is a director, adaptor, teacher and non-profit and
philanthropic consultant. He was the co-founder and resident director of
Philadelphia's Arden Theatre Company where he has directed more than 40
productions over the last 17 years including nine of his original
adaptations from literature, and, most recently Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz
and Guildenstern are Dead and Steve Martin's The Underpants. He also directs
nationally, at The Folger Theatre (where he recently received a Helen Hayes
Award for his direction of The Two Gentlemen of Verona), Seattle Repertory
Theatre, Actor's Theatre of Louisville, and many, many others. He won a
Barrymore Award for Outstanding New Play for his 1998 adaptation of Chaim
Potok's The Chosen and for directing for A Midsummer Night's Dream, both at
the Arden.

Making her ATC debut as Haley Walker is Erika Rolfsrud. Ms. Rolfsrud lives
in New York City, where some of her credits include The Glory of Living
(directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman), How I Learned to Drive, Love's Fire, O
Pioneer!, and Eclipsed. Her regional theatre credits include Outrage at
Wilma Theatre; Jumpers at ACT Theatre; The Dazzle at Hartford Theatreworks;
Much Ado About Nothing at the Great Lakes Theatre Festival; The Seagull,
Cymbeline, Henry IV parts 1 & 2, Dancing at Lughnasa and Macbeth at The Old
Globe; and the Shakespeare festivals of Utah, Seattle and Idaho. She has
been seen on Third Watch and on All My Children, and appeared in the short
film Alone.

The veteran artistic team includes William Bloodgood (Scenic Designer),
resident scenic designer for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival where he has
designed over 150 productions, who returns to ATC for his fourth production,
having last designed scenery here for Blues for an Alabama Sky in 1999; Sam
Fleming (Costume Designer), the associate costume designer for The Phantom
of the Opera on Broadway, who previously designed Permanent Collection, A
Streetcar Named Desire, A Moon for the Misbegotten, Wit and Proof for ATC;
Rick Paulsen (Lighting Designer) who returns to ATC having designed lighting
for Macbeth last season. Previously, he designed Copenhagen, The Drawer Boy,
Fully Committed, Inventing van Gogh, Master Class, Rocket Man, The Illusion,
Private Eyes, Dancing at Lughnasa and Minor Demons; Brian Jerome Peterson
(Resident Sound Designer) celebrates his 20th season and 47th sound design
for ATC; Glenn Bruner (Production Stage Manager).

Tickets range from $26-$44 depending on date and section choice and are
available at or by calling the ATC box office at
(520) 622-2823. Discounts are available for students, seniors and active
military. Half-price student rush tickets are available for balcony seating
for all performances one hour prior to curtain at the ATC box office
(subject to availability; must show ID). For discounts on groups of eight or
more, call (520) 884-8210 x 8204.

ATC will offer a Pay What You Can performance on Tuesday, October 25 at 7:30
PM. A limited number of tickets will go on sale at the Temple of Music and
Art at 11 AM on the day of the performance. Purchases are limited to two
tickets per order with a suggested donation of $5 per ticket and are sold on
a first come, first served basis. The tickets must be purchased in person
and with cash only.

ATC offers audio-described performances for patrons who have low vision or
are blind on Thursday, November 10 at 2 PM. Interested patrons may request a
tactile tour one hour prior to curtain. Braille and large-print playbills
are available upon request from the house manager. An American Sign
Language-interpreted performance is offered Saturday, November 5 at 8 PM.
Patrons who are deaf or hard of hearing will receive a biography of the
interpreters, a description of the play and name signs of each character. An
open-captioned performance is offered on Thursday, November 10 at 2 PM. As
the play progresses, those in open-captioned seating will be able to read
the play's dialogue displayed in large green letters on an LED. The service
is for patrons with mild to severe hearing loss who may not be ASL-literate.
Tickets to all performances are available through the ATC box office at
(520) 622-2823. TTY access for the box office is available via Arizona Relay
at (800) 367-8939 (TTY/ASCII).

For ticket information for the Phoenix run of Bad Dates, call the ATC box
office in Phoenix at (602) 256-6995 or visit our website at

One of America's Great Regional Theatres
For more information about Arizona Theatre Company's production of Bad
Dates, including specific performances and special events, please visit the
Bad Dates fact sheet.

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to be directed to the Bad Dates fact sheet

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