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The Two River Theater Box Office and Administrative Offices will be closed Monday, May 27.

Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine

Written and Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson

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When liberal, Upper West Side resident Judith befriends Zeke, a highly educated yet once-homeless man she meets at a soup kitchen, their fragile hold on history begins to slip. Tony Award-winner Ruben Santiago-Hudson (director of Two River’s critically acclaimed productions of August Wilson’s Jitney and Two Trains Running) brings us a provocative, daring, and immensely powerful world-premiere drama about race, sacrifice, and legacy.

WATCH

Official Trailer

CRITICAL ACCLAIM

Highly entertaining & scrupulously directed

TWO RIVER TIMES/SCENE ON STAGE

A timely and important production that everyone should see — now

BROADWAYWORLD.COM

A wild ride & thought-provoking experience

THEATER CUES

MEET THE ARTISTS

THE CAST

Brandon J. Dirden

BRANDON J. DIRDEN (CAESAR WILKS) recently appeared on Broadway starring in the Tony Award winning production of Take Me Out and Skeleton Crew for which he received a Drama Desk nominationHe also appeared on Broadway as Martin Luther King, Jr. in the Tony Award-winning production of All the Way, with Bryan Cranston, as ‘Booster’; the Tony Award winning revival of August Wilson’s Jitney; Clybourne Park; Enron; and Prelude to a Kiss. Off-Broadway, he has appeared in The Piano Lesson, for which he won Obie, Theatre World and AUDELCO awards; The First Breeze of Summer and Day of Absence at Signature Theatre; Detroit ’67 at the Public Theater and Classical Theatre of Harlem; Peter and the Starcatcher at New York Theatre Workshop; and as ‘Brutus’ in TFANA’s production of Julius Caesar. On screen he has appeared in “The Good Wife”, “For Life”, “Evil”, “The Big C”, “Public Morals”, “Manifest”, “The Get Down”, “The Accidental Wolf”, “Blue Bloods, “The Quad”, the FX miniseries “Mrs. America” and four seasons of FX’s “The Americans” as Agent Dennis Aderholt. He has directed numerous plays by Dominique Morisseau and August Wilson and recently Wine in the Wilderness by Alice Childress for Two River Theater. Brandon is an Associate Arts Professor on the faculty of Tisch Grad Acting at NYU; a frequent volunteer at the 52nd Street Project; and a proud member of both Actor’s Equity Association and Fair Wage On Stage.    

Andrew Hovelson

Andrew Hovelson Broadway: Lucky Guy (w/ Tom Hanks), An Enemy of the People (MTC). Off-Broadway: Theridamas in Tamburlaine the Great (TFANA), Golden Age (MTC), As You Like It (NYSF). World Premieres: a cautionary tale by Christopher Oscar Pena, KMT adapted by Keith Reddin (dir. Mark Wing-Davey). Regional: Chautauqua Theater Company, American Players Theatre, Odyssey Theatre LA, Antaeus Theater Company. Film: Threshold, Inaudible, The Rapture of 1863, and the upcoming Stranger in the Dunes.TV: Unforgettable, The Good Wife, ER. Training: M.F.A. NYU Graduate Acting, B.F.A. University of MN/Guthrie Theater Actor Training Program. Thank you God, April, Maverick, and family!

Merritt Janson

Merritt Janson Off-Broadway: The Public (Richard II w/WNYC, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Theatre for a New Audience (Julius Caesar, Measure for Measure, Tamburlaine the Great, Notes From Underground), Red Bull Theater (Coriolanus), 59E59, Transport Group, Abingdon Theater. Regional: American Repertory Theater, Yale Repertory Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Shakespeare Theater DC, Two River Theater, Denver Center, Westport Playhouse, Shakespeare & Company, Wilma Theater, Theatre de la Jeune Lune. TV includes “Billions,” “Elementary,” “Madam Secretary,” “Quantico.” Training: MFA, American Repertory Theater at Harvard University. 

Roslyn Ruff

Janeece

Roslyn Ruff
Charles Weldon

Charles Weldon  is the Artistic Director of The Negro Ensemble Company, Inc. (NEC) and a veteran director and actor of stage, film, and television. Directing credits include: the NEC productions of Futurology the Musical, Cabaret, and The Picture Box. He directed Colored People’s Time for the New York Public Schools, The Offering at Rip Rap Studio Theater in Los Angeles, Waiting to End Hell, at the Shadow Theatre in Denver. His career began as the lead singer with the group The Pardons in 1961, writing and recording the number one smash hit, Diamonds and Pearls. He performed in the original San Francisco cast of Hair. Charles came to New York with the Broadway musical Big Time Buck White with Mohammed Ali, and in 1970 he joined the legendary Negro Ensemble Company as an actor. He was seen in NEC’s The Great MacDaddy, The Offering, The Brownsville Raid, A Soldier’s Play, and NEC’s Broadway production of The River Niger. Other productions include: Second Stage Theatre’s award-winning play Birdie Blue with S. Epatha Merkerson; Thunder Knocking at the Door at The Guthrie Theater; Fences and King Lear at the Asolo Theatre; It Ain’t Nothing But the Blues at The Kennedy Center; Piano Lesson, at Center Stage; Touch the Names: Letters to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (original cast recording); Much Ado About Nothing, Taming of the Shrew, and Driving Miss Daisy at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival; The Madwoman, A Selfish Sacrifice, A Streetcar Named Desire, King Hedley II, Jitney, Coming of the Hurricane and Two Trains Running at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Film credits include: Stir Crazy, Serpico, A Woman Called Moses, The River Niger and, more recently, Malcolm X and Showtime’s The Wishing Tree with Alfre Woodard and Blair Underwood. Television credits include: Roots: The Next Generation, and appearances on Law & Order: Trial by Jury, Police Story, New York Undercover and Law & Order. He has won several awards including: the “HENRY” (Excellence in Regional Theater) for Best Supporting Actor in Gem of the Ocean by August Wilson, and Best Supporting Actor by Audelco for his role in Seven Guitars at Signature Theatre. In addition to his role as Artistic Director, Charles is proud to be the co-founder of The Negro Ensemble Company, Inc. Alumni Organization

THE CREATIVES

Playwright and Director

Ruben Santiago-Hudson
Ruben Santiago-Hudson

Ruben Santiago-Hudson returns to Two River, where he directed August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Two Trains Running, and Jitney and his own world-premiere play, Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine. He Broadway production of Jitney won Tony, Drama Desk, Drama League, New York Drama Critics’ Circle, and Outer Critics Circle Awards. He recently directed and performed his Obie Award-winning solo show Lackawanna Blues at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles; his screenplay for the HBO adaptation received the Humanitas Prize, Christopher Award, National Board of Review Honors, and NAACP Image Award, and Emmy, Golden Globe, and Writers Guild of America nominations. Santiago-Hudson made his directorial debut with Gem of the Ocean (McCarter Theatre and American Conservatory Theater). His other recent directing credits include Othello (Delacorte Theater); two world premieres by Dominique Morisseau, Skeleton Crew (Atlantic) and Paradise Blue (Williamstown); Athol Fugard’s My Children! My Africa!, The Piano Lesson, Seven Guitars and The First Breeze of Summer (all for Signature Theatre Company, where he was an Associate Artist 2008-2009); Quiara Alegria Hudes’ The Happiest Song Plays Last (for Second Stage); Things of Dry Hours (New York Theatre Workshop); and Radio Golf (Kennedy Center). Santiago-Hudson made his Broadway acting debut in Jelly’s Last Jam. His performance in Seven Guitars earned him the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play. His recent theater performances include August Wilson’s How I Learned What I Learned (Signature Theatre), Stick Fly (Broadway), A Winter’s Tale (NYSF), and Gem of the Ocean (Broadway). He was seen on TV in the ABC show Castle as Captain Roy Montgomery for three seasons and most recently on the AMC Drama Low Winter Sun; his other TV credits include: The Family, Billions, Public Morals, The Good Wife, Low Winter Sun, Person of Interest, Forgotten Genius, The West Wing, Law & Order The Red Sneakers, Solomon and Sheba, Rear Window. His film credits include Selma, Their Eyes Were Watching GodAmerican Gangster, Shaft, Devil’s Advocate, and Domestic Disturbance, among many others.  He has been honored with numerous awards, including three Obies, Lucille Lortel, Outer Critics Circle, Dramalogue, Joe A. Calloway Directing Award, Clarence Derwent, and Helen Hayes Awards, the Distinguished Alumni Award from Wayne State University, AUDELCO Awards, a Black Filmmaker’s Award, and an HBO Arts Festival Theater Award. He is the recipient of Honorary Doctorate degrees from both Buffalo State College and Wayne State University. The Ruben Santiago-Hudson Fine Arts Learning Center in Lackawanna, New York was named in his honor.

Scenic Designer

Michael Carnahan
Michael Carnahan

Michael Carnahan previously designed The Ballad of Little JoYour Blues Ain’t Sweet Like MineThirdOn Borrowed Time, and August Wilson’s Seven Guitars and Two Trains Running at Two RiverOff-Broadway—Atlantic Theater Company: Skeleton Crew; 59E59: I and You; Second Stage: The Happiest Song Plays Last; Signature Theatre: The Piano LessonThe First Breeze of Summer; Life Could Be a DreamThe Marvelous WonderettesThree Mo’ TenorsPygmalionHowie the RookieBrando. Tours—Cheers, Live On StageA Christmas Story The Musical, Peter & The Starcatcher. Regional credits include Mark Taper Forum, Arena Stage, American Conservatory Theater, The Kennedy Center, McCarter Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Baltimore Center Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Pasadena Playhouse, Two River Theatre, Chautauqua Theater Company, Cleveland Play House, Detroit Public Theater, Laguna Playhouse, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Northlight Theatre, Signature Theatre, Bucks County Playhouse, Ogunquit Playhouse, Arsht Center, Musical Theatre West, San Jose Repertory, Center Repertory. michaelcarnahandesign.com Instagram: Carnypics Twitter: @mike_carnahan

Costume Designer

Karen Perry
Karen Perry

KAREN PERRY (Costume Designer) previously designed August Wilson’s King Hedley IIMa Rainey’s Black BottomJitneyTwo Trains Running, Seven Guitars and Radio Golf at Two River, as well as Love in Hate NationOo-Bla-DeeLives of ReasonYour Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine, Guadalupe in the Guest RoomThird and Trouble in Mind. Her most recent credits include Run-Boy-Run & In Old Age (New York Theatre Workshop), Mothers (Playwrights Realm), Jazz (MTC), Lackawanna Blues with Ruben Santiago-Hudson (Mark Taper Forum), Fun Home (Baltimore Center Stage), Steel Magnolias, Hair, Dreamgirls (DTC), Oklahoma! (Houston Ballet at TUTS) and Cinderella Ballet (Eglevsky Ballet Company). Other credits include Danai Gurira’s Familiar (Woolly Mammoth, Guthrie, Seattle Rep), Cabin in the Sky (Encores!), Pearl Cleage’s Blues for an Alabama Sky (Pasadena Playhouse), John Grisham’s A Time to Kill, dir. Ethan McSweeny (Arena), Crownsstop. reset, Trinity River Trilogy by Regina Taylor (Goodman, STC, DTC/Arena), The Trip to Bountiful, Walter Mosley’s The Fall of Heaven, dir. Marion McClinton (Cincinnati Playhouse), The Brother/Sister Plays by Tarell McCraney, dirs. Tina Landau and Robert O’Hara (The Public/McCarter), Having Our Say by Emily Mann (McCarter), and Resurrection by Daniel Beaty (Arena). She has designed every play in August Wilson’s American Century Cycle except Fences. Film/TV credits include Gregory Hines ShowSaturday Night Live, and The Brother from Another Planet by director John Sayles. Wine in the Wildness is proudly Karen’s 14th production with TRTC. Currently: Raisin in the Sun @ the Public Theater.

Lighting Designer

Driscoll Otto
Driscoll Otto

Driscoll Otto Previously designed Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine and Seven Guitars at Two River. This summer, Driscoll designed the lighting for Turandot at a quarry in Austria for Oper im Steinbruch. Recently he designed Lighting and Projections for Houston Grand Opera’s Marian’s Song, lighting for The Huntington Theatre Company’s production of The Purists directed by Billy Porter, projection design for Maggio Musicale Fiorentino’s The Flying Dutchman, lighting and projections for Iolanta at Chicago Opera Theatre. Mr. Otto’s design work is seen frequently in NYC, regional theatre, and opera. Other credits include The Huntington Theatre Company, Utah Opera, The Old Globe, Opera Omaha, Opera Philadelphia, Dallas Theater Center, Drury Lane Theatre, The Dallas Opera, Chicago Opera Theatre, Houston Shakespeare Festival, Trinity Repertory Company, Hangar Theatre, Flat Rock Playhouse, Lyric Opera Kansas City, and productions of Legally Blonde and Rock of Ages for Norwegian Cruise Lines. Highlights to his resume include projection design for Santa Fe Opera’s production of The Golden Cockerel and The Metropolitan Opera’s production of La Donna Del Lago. Upcoming projects include The Life reimagined and directed by Billy Porter for New York City Center’s Encores!, Paul Moravec, and Mark Campbell’s new oratorio Sanctuary Road. He received his MFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. His work can be seen at www.DriscollOtto.com

Sound Designer

Robert Kaplowitz
Robert Kaplowitz

Robert Kaplowitz has been lucky enough to spend the last 24 years designing sound and composing music, and has been honored with an Obie for Sustained Excellence in Sound Design and a Tony for Fela!.  For Mr. Santiago-Hudson, he designed Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine and August Wilson’s Two Trains Running here at Two River, as well as Skeleton Crew at the Atlantic and Athol Fugard’s My Children! My Africa! at the Signature Theatre. He lives in Philadelphia, where he’s created work with PlayPenn, Arden, Interact, Wilma, PTC, Lantern, Pig Iron, Elastic, Azuka, and Lucidity Suitcase. In other cities, his work has been heard at The Public, MCC, both Signatures, NYTW, Lincoln Center, The National Theatre of England, The Guthrie, MTC, Playwrights, and basically every 99-seat theater in NYC. His love of his art is exceeded only by his love of his family.

Original Music

Bill Sims, Jr.
Bill Sims, Jr.

Bill Sims, Jr. is an internationally respected “Master of the Blues.” With the Heritage Blues Orchestra, he was a 2012 Grammy nominee for “And Still I Rise” in the category of Best Blues Album. His recent theater credits include August Wilson’s Two Trains Running and Jitney at Two River and The Piano Lesson at Signature Theatre. Off-Broadway: Lackawanna Blues (Public Theater, Obie Award for Music, 2001), Seven Guitars, The First Breeze of Summer (both Signature), Things of Dry Hours (NYTW). Other theater: Deep Down (INTAR), Gem of the Ocean (McCarter), Crowns (Intiman), Trick the Devil (Freedom Theatre), Moms and Her Ladies (The Producers Club), Polk County (Berkeley Rep). Mr. Sims was the subject of the documentary An American Love Story (PBS) for which he composed many of the songs for the soundtrack. Other film credits: Lackawanna Blues, New York Stories, Miss Ruby’s House, American Gangster, Cadillac Records. His voice can be heard in many TV and radio commercials. His critically acclaimed 1999 CD release Bill Sims (Warner Bros.) demonstrates his knowledge of the many facets of the Blues. Training: Ohio State University. www.heritagebluesorchestra.com

Fight Director

Thomas Schall
Thomas Schall

Thomas Schall has served as fight director on over 70 Broadway shows, among them Six Degrees of Separation, Groundhog Day, Jitney, The Present, The Front Page, The Crucible, Blackbird, War Horse, Of Mice and Men, Romeo and Juliet, Death of a Salesman, Venus in Fur, A View from the Bridge. He has worked extensively at Lincoln Center Theater (Disgraced, Blood and Gifts), The Public Theater (Hamlet, King Lear, Mother Courage), MTC (Ruined, Murder Ballad), New York Theatre Workshop (Red Speedo, Othello) and the Met Opera (Nozze di Figaro, Il Trovatore).

Casting

Heidi Griffiths
Heidi Griffiths

Heidi Griffiths has worked for more than 25 years at the Joseph Papp Public Theater in NYC, where she has cast over 200 productions Off-Broadway and at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, including Shakespeare, new plays, and musicals. On Broadway: The Girl From The North Country; The Inheritance; The Iceman Cometh; Sweat; Shuffle Along; The Crucible, Eclipsed; A Delicate Balance; A Raisin in the Sun; Lucky Guy; Chinglish; The Motherf**ker with the Hat; The Merchant of Venice; Hair; Passing Strange; Caroline, or Change; Take Me Out (Tony Award, Best Play 2003); Topdog/Underdog (Pulitzer Prize, 2002); The Wild Party; Bring in ’Da Noise, Bring in ’Da Funk; On the Town; and The Tempest. She also cast the films The Incredibly True Adventures of Two Girls in Love, MURDER and murder, Saving Face and Ladybird. Radio Golf is her 12th collaboration with Two River Theater.

Kate Murray
Kate Murray

Two River Theater: TheoKing Hedley IIThe Importance of Being EarnestThe Women of Padilla, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Seven GuitarsYour Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine, and The School for Wives. Broadway (as Casting Associate): The CrucibleA View from the Bridge, A Delicate Balance, A Raisin in the SunLucky Guy (Casting Assistant). Additional casting credits include work with Arena Stage, Center Theater Group, The Cherry Lane, Bedlam, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, LAByrinth, New Georges, TheaterWorks Hartford, and The Studio TheatreKate is a Casting Director at The Public Theater.

Production Stage Manager

Laura Wilson
Laura Wilson

Laura Wilson Previously at TRT: Ma Rainey’s Black BottomSeven Guitars, Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine, Third, No Place to Go. Broadway: Roman Holiday (OOT Tryout), Jitney, All The Way, First Date, A Free Man of Color, The People in the Picture. Off-Broadway: Paradise Blue (Signature Theatre); School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play (MCC); Skeleton Crew (Atlantic Theater Company); Exit Strategy (Primary Stages); The Really Big Once, A Family of Perhaps Three (Target Margin Theater). Regional: Bull Durham (Alliance Theatre); Guys and Dolls (Riverside Theatre); The Three Sisters, The Boys from Syracuse, and Things of Dry Hours (Centerstage, Baltimore); Tom Stoppard’s On the Razzle (Clarence Brown Theatre).

PHOTOS

Dates and tickets

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