New York Times Bestselling author Joyce Carol Oates attended the staged reading of her play I STAND BEFORE YOU NAKED on Sunday, November 28th. The evening was a benefit for Safe Horizon, a charity that helps victims of domestic violence. (www.safehorizon.org). The reading was presented at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater and featured Broadway stars Barbara Walsh (COMPANY, HAIRSPRAY, FALSETTOS), Nikka Lanzarone (WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN), Stephanie D'Abruzzo (AVENUE Q), Mary Stout (BEAUTY AND THE BEAST), Janet Carroll (LITTLE WOMEN), and Bree Williamson (ONE LIFE TO LIVE).
The evening featured a pre-show panel discussion with Joyce Carol Oates, three experts from John Jay College, and a representative of Safe Horizon. Ariel Zwang, the CEO of Safe Horizon, made a keynote address.
I STAND BEFORE YOU NAKED presents an extraordinary array of women betrayed by their husbands, their lovers, and sometimes themselves - it is a searing look at misplaced love, infidelity, and the primal desire to be loved.
Other performers included: Abby Royle (ACTS OF LOVE), AnnMarie Benedict (ROBESON), Jennifer McCabe (MEDEA IN JERUSALEM), Elizabeth Pojanowski (Cincinnati Opera), Melissa Miller (TARTUFFE) and Karin de la Penha (HASSAN & SYLVIA). The director was Bill Connington (Joyce Carol Oates' award-winning ZOMBIE). Casting was by Robin Carus. Razors Edge Productions, Small Pond Entertainment, and Sarah Melissa Rotker produced.
The distinguished cast and production team included multiple award-winners: Barbara Walsh (nominated for the Tony Award, and two Drama Desk awards), Stephanie D'Abruzzo (nominated for the Tony Award and the Drama Desk award; winner of the Theatre World Award), and Bill Connington (multiple Off-Broadway awards for Joyce Carol Oates' ZOMBIE).
Joyce Carol OATES has written some of the most enduring fiction of our time, and is considered to be one of America's greatest living authors. In a prolific and varied career she has proven herself one the most influential and important storytellers in the literary world. She is a New York Times bestselling author, and winner of the National Book Award, who has written the national bestsellers WE WERE THE MULVANEYS, BLONDE (a finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize), THE FALLS (winner of the 2005 Prix Femina) and THE GRAVEDIGGER'S DAUGHTER. She has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize four times, and is often considered for the Nobel Prize for Literature. A winner of innumerable awards, she has written almost 100 books. She is a distinguished professor at Princeton University. Ms. Oates writes an average of two or three books a year. Her work frequently has dealt with the deeper meaning of sexual abuse, desire for power, and violence.
SAFE HORIZON is the largest victims' services agency in the United States, with more than 60 locations serving more than 250,000 children, adults, and families affected by crime and abuse throughout New York City each year. Since 1978, Safe Horizon has provided victims of domestic violence, child abuse, human trafficking, rape and sexual assault, as well as homeless youth and families of homicide victims, with a wide range of comprehensive support. Our programs also partner with governmental and other community agencies so we can offer additional assistance, including finding resources for those living outside New York City. In addition to our direct services, Safe Horizon also advocates for policies on a local, state, and national level on behalf of those affected by violence and abuse.