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The SUNY Sullivan Theater Program is proud to announce a double feature of live theater, with performances of the ZOO STORY/THE DUTCHMAN by Edward Albee and LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka, respectively.

ZOO STORY/THE DUTCHMAN, directed by Nick López, Adjunct Professor of Theater at SUNY Sullivan will perform March 6-14, 2020, Wednesday – Saturdays at 8 PM and Sunday at 2 PM in the Seelig Theater at SUNY Sullivan, 112 College Road, Loch Sheldrake, NY, 12759.

We are excited to have plays that touch on the spirit of 1969 with shades of the Stonewall riots launching the LGTBIQ+ movement, Woodstock, the Vietnam War, Love/Peace, Racial Tension, Disability Awareness, the Cold War, and Identity.

For reservations, email jbarkl@sunysullivan.edu or buy tickets at the door. Ticket prices are a suggested donation of $10, with all donations going to help the theater program.

Zoo Story Synopsis

In ZOO STORY, to escape his wife, two daughters and two parakeets, Peter sits on a bench in Central Park, reading and thinking. Jerry joins him, having just been to the zoo. He draws the unwilling Peter into conversation and extracts information from him. In return Jerry supplies Peter with a curious medley of information about his wanderings in New York. The outcome of the meeting is a willing death for one of them.

The Dutchman Synopsis

THE DUTCHMAN presents a stylized encounter that illustrates hatred between blacks and whites in America as well as the political and psychological conflicts facing black American men in the 1960s. The play won an Obie Award as best American Off-Broadway of 1964 and was made into a film in 1967. Set in a New York City subway car, the play involves Clay, a young middle-class black man who is approached seductively by Lula, a white fellow passenger.

About the Playwrights

Edward Albee, playwright for ZOO STORY, was born on March 12, 1928, in Virginia. A three-time Pulitzer-Prize winning playwright, he was inducted into the American Hall of Fame in 1985. He also received the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award as a Master American Dramatist in 1999, a Kennedy Center Honor in 1996, and the National Medal of Arts in 1996. Albee’s plays have been challenged, engaged and, at times, confounded audiences since he first burst upon the scene with THE ZOO STORY (which he wrote in two and a half weeks). Ben Brantley, chief theater critic of THE NEW YORK TIMES, thinks Albee was one of the great American dramatists. “Is there anyone else who dares to take on questions that that big?” Brantley asks. “I’m not talking about questions of politics or immediate topical issues. Edward Albee asks questions – the most basic existential questions – he confronts death, he confronts sex with, I think, eyes that remain very wide open.”

LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka, playwright for THE DUTCHMAN, is a well-known African-American writer of fiction, drama, poetry, and music. With books such as TALES OF THE OUT AND THE GONE, he has received the PEN Open Book Award and is also respected as one of the most widely published African American authors of his generation. Born in 1934, Amiri Baraka was raised in the USA. Amiri Baraka has taken influences from a number of musical orishas such as John Coltrane, Malcolm X, Ornette Coleman and Thelonius Monk. His study on ‘African-American music’ and the play DUTCHMAN and BLUES PEOPLE is commendable. Also, his published collection of essays, The Essence of Reparations and poems like Somebody Blew up America added more fame to his name. He has been recognized with a long list of awards and honors that includes the James Weldon Johnson Medal for contribution to the arts, the American Academy of Arts & Letters award, the Poet Laureate of New Jersey and Professor Emeritus at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.