Off-Broadway Theater: NOLLYWOOD DREAMS (MCC Theater)

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by Gregory Bernard on October 21, 2021

in Theater-New York

MCC Theater (511 W 52nd St) opens its 2021-22 season with Nollywood Dreams, which reunites the entire cast from the 2020 MCC production that was postponed due to the theater shutdown. Written by Jocelyn Bioh (School Girls; or, The African Mean Girls Play), Nollywood Dream will begin previews in-person at MCC Theater’s  Newman Mills Theater on October 21, 2021. Directed by Saheem Ali (Fires in The Mirror), Nollywood Dreams will have an opening night on November 11, 2021 and play a limited run through November 28, 2021. Tickets on sale now at MCC Theater.

It’s the 1990s and in Lagos, Nigeria, the Nollywood film industry is exploding and taking the world by storm. Ayamma dreams of stardom while working at her parents’ travel agency alongside her lovable and celebrity-obsessed sister Dede. When Ayamma lands an audition for a new film by Gbenga Ezie, Nigeria’s hottest director, she comes head-to-head with Gbenga’s former leading lady, Fayola. Tensions flare just as sparks start flying between Ayamma, the aspiring ingénue, and Wale, Nollywood’s biggest heartthrob, in this hilarious new play about dreaming big.

The reunited cast is Abena (School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play), Charlie Hudson, III (A Raisin in the Sun), Nana Mensah (Man from Nebraska), Sandra Okuboyejo (Hamilton), Ade Otukoya (Gem of the Ocean), and Emana Rachelle (In The Name Of).

Nollywood Dreams features scenic design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costume design by Dede Ayite, lighting design by David Weiner and Jiyoun Chang, sound design by Palmer Hefferan, projection design by Alex Basco Koch, and hair & wig design by Nikiya MathisDawn-Elin Fraser is the dialect coach and Alyssa K Howard is the production stage manager.

The next shows of the 2021/2022:

SPACE DOGS

A new musical written and performed by Van Hughes and Nick Blaemire
Susan & Ronald Frankel Theater
January – February 2022

Space Dogs tells the heartbreaking, mind-blowing true story of Laika and the Chief Designer — a stray dog and the top-secret Russian scientist who sent her to space during the Cold War. Written and performed by actor-musicians Van Hughes and Nick Blaemire, it is a sweeping, kaleidoscopic tale of invention, betrayal, international political intrigue, and the immortal friendship that exists between man and dog, as they journey together to the stars.

HERE SHE IS, BOYS

By Ana Nogueira
Directed by Mike Donahue
Newman Mills Theater
April – May 2022

The year is 2015 and Jeff and Judy are right where they’re supposed to be: waiting outside the stage door of If/Then to get an autograph from the star. But the conversation they have while they wait will change the course of their decades-long friendship forever. Warning: Beware of Tourists.

soft
By Donja R. Love
Directed by Whitney White
Susan & Ronald Frankel Theater
May – June 2022

Flowers are magically in bloom—in Mr. Isaiah’s classroom, in the halls of the correctional boarding school where he teaches, and in the depths of his students’ imaginations. After one boy dies by suicide, Mr. Isaiah struggles to figure out how to save the Black and Brown boys he teaches from a world that tries to crush their softness.

UNCENSORED
An MCC Youth Company Production
Spring 2022

An annual highlight of the MCC calendar, the 21st Edition of Uncensored will feature New York City teens taking over MCC’s main stage to speak their truth. MCC Youth Company’s Performance Lab and Brooklyn Youth Company branches put on exhilarating shows with student-written monologues, scenes, music, and ensemble pieces.  Uncensored is a celebration of young voices who speak to their experiences, hopes and dreams reflecting on today, while looking toward the future.  Their words are emboldened with music and movement, resulting in a show that will bring you to your feet.

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