Black Milk, by the Russian playwright Vassily Sigarev (translation by Sasha Dugdale), will have its New York premiere Off-Broadway this summer from July 19 – August 4, 2012 in a production helmed by the acclaimed Venezuelan director Michel Hausmann at East 13th Street Theatre, 136 East 13th Street (home of Classic Stage Company). Black Milk, which played a successful, critically lauded run at London's Royal Court Theatre in 2003, also marks the New York debut work by Sigarev, "A writer with an unflinching love of extremes" (The Guardian, UK). Tickets for this limited engagement are $30 and can be arranged online at www.Smarttix.com. Running time: 100 minutes. For more info, please visit www.blackmilktheplay.com
"When you get back to your capital, you can tell them how people live in Russia, 'cause they don't have the faintest idea." In Black Milk, Lyovchik and Poppet, a small-time crook and his heavily pregnant, chain-smoking, lollipop-sucking wife, descend on a post-Communist wasteland, swindling villagers out of their savings. The young couple sits stranded in a remote train station and as the night persists, the strange, cruel, and whimsical world of their homeland teaches them a lesson. Michel Hausmann directs a cast that includes Liba Vaynberg, Josh Marcantel, Anna Foss Wilson, John Bambery and Emily Ward with Set design by Ika Avaliani, lighting design by Yuki Nakase and Liene Dobraja is the costume designer. The production is produced by High Staked Theatre (Katharine Beckett Sullivan, founder) and Palo de Agua (Artistic Director Michel Hausmann and Executive Producer Yair Rosemberg).
Vassily Sigarev was born in 1977 in the Lower Tagil region of the Urals where he still lives and works. His plays have been translated and performed around the world. English-language premieres include: Plasticine in London (Royal Court Theatre, 2000); Black Milk in London (Royal Court Theatre, 2002) and in Belfast (2009); Ladybird in London (Royal Court Theatre, 2004), Los Angeles (2007) and in Australia (2009). Productions in the rest of the world include: Plasticine in Denmark, Greece and Romania; Black Milk in Poland, Belgium, Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania; Ladybird in Germany and Romania; Phantom Pains in Poland, Latvia and Romania; Lie Detector in Czech Republic; Goupiochka in Estonia, Slovakia, France and Belgium; and Agasfer in Slovenia and Serbia. He has recently completed his first film, Spinning Top in Russia. Vassily's awards include: The Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright; the Charles Wintour Award for Most Promising Playwright; the Anti-Booker Prize; the Debut Prize; the Eureka prize.
Director Michel Hausmann is a Venezuelan-born theater director and producer. He is the co-founder and artistic director of Palo de Agua, a leading Venezuelan theater Production Company. Last fall Michel directed the New York premiere of The Color Of Desire, the latest work by Pulitzer Prize winning author Nilo Cruz at the Repertorio Español. With Moisés Kaufman, he co-directed the Venezuelan premiere of Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde with his Theater company in 2010. Also for Palo de Agua, Michel has translated into Spanish and directed Fiddler on the Roof, The Producers, Jesus Christ Superstar, God's Favorite and Play it Again, Sam. All produced in Caracas as well as other major cities of Venezuela. Hausmann Is currently finishing his M.F.A in Directing at Columbia University under Anne Bogart and Brian Kulick.
Palo de Agua (Producer) is an award winning Venezuelan based theater company established in 2003 by Artistic Director Michel Hausmann and Executive Producer Yair Rosemberg. It's credit's include the Venezuelan premiere of Moises Kaufman's Gross Indecency: The Three trials of Oscar Wilde, The Musicals Fiddler on the Roof, The Producers and Jesus Christ Superstar, as well as the world premiere of Isaac Chocron's Los Navegaos. Palo de Agua has also produced in Venezuela Woody Allen's Play it Again, Sam, Neil Simon's God's Favorite and the children's show Raton y Vampiro, currently on stage in Caracas. At the request of the Sucre Municipal government Palo de Agua heads the renewal and administration of the Cesar Rengifo Theater of Petare in Caracas, at the heart of Latin America's biggest Favela. Palo de Agua has also produced concerts for local and international talents including Academy Award-winner Jorge Drexler and the Grammy-nominated band "Jarabe De Palo." The company has been at the forefront on the fight for cultural independence in Venezuela, and has been in the center of several disputes with the Government of Hugo Chavez.