Book-It’s BEHOLD THE DREAMERS: Beyond the Theatre

Imbolo Mbue’s thought-provoking and compassionate 2016 novel Behold the Dreamers follows the experiences of Jende and Neni Jonge, Cameroonian immigrants who are pursuing the American dream in New York City on the cusp of the 2008 financial crisis.

Book-It Repertory Theatre’s adaptation of Mbue’s BEHOLD THE DREAMERS, adapted and directed by Myra Platt, runs June 6 to 30, 2019. Here are a few books to enhance your experience of the show, with a longer list linked at the end of this post.
For other narratives that similarly shed a light on immigrants’ experiences in the United States, check out these novels and memoirs:

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Acclaimed Nigerian author Adichie offers a compelling depiction of globalization and immigrant life through the eyes of Ifemulu, a young Nigerian woman striving to build a life in America, and her friends and family. Continue reading “Book-It’s BEHOLD THE DREAMERS: Beyond the Theatre”

Book-It Repertory Theatre’s MY ÁNTONIA: Beyond the Theatre

Book-It Repertory Theatre presents MY ÁNTONIA by Willa Cather, adapted and directed by Annie Lareau, from November 29 to December 30, 2018. Librarians at Seattle Public Library created this list of books, video, and podcasts to enhance your experience of the show.

photo of lead actors in Book-It's production of My Antonia

book cover image for My AntoniaAnnie Lareau, director of Book-It Repertory Theatre’s 2018 production of MY ÁNTONIA, has a long history with the book. Lareau wrote the theatrical adaptation of Willa Cather’s classic novel and starred in the premiere of the work at Book-It in 2008. My Ántonia is the story of a young immigrant arriving in the Great Plains at the close of the 19th century. Lareau used “her dog-eared copy of the book” to write the adaptation, rediscovering “her own adolescent markings of passages she thought were important… ‘It’s Ántonia’s spirit that gets me,’ Lareau said, ‘so open-hearted, she comes to this country under really difficult circumstances and is a survivor. For all her hardships, she always comes back to that mix of fierceness and hope.’” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) Continue reading “Book-It Repertory Theatre’s MY ÁNTONIA: Beyond the Theatre”

Seattle Rep’s A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS: Beyond the Theatre

What happens when a compelling work of fiction is adapted into a script for the stage?  It comes alive!   See for yourself in the Seattle Repertory Theater’s production of A Thousand Splendid Suns. Khalid Hosseini’s tale portrays a 14 year old orphan’s forced marriage to an abusive husband. At first, her relationship with his first wife is strained and then, the women bond around their mutual plight.  Witness how, war, love, death, loyalty and betrayal shape the fate of each character. Continue reading “Seattle Rep’s A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS: Beyond the Theatre”

Book-It Repertory Theatre’s JANE EYRE: Beyond the Theatre

Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel, adapted and directed by Julie Beckman, will be playing from September 13 to October 14, 2018 at Seattle’s Book-It Repertory Theatre. Since its publication in 1847, Jane Eyre has inspired countless readers. Below are a few books and films to enhance your experience of the show:

The Secret History of Jane Eyre. by John Pfordresher
Why did Charlotte insist on hiding her authorship of JANE EYRE from everyone but her sisters? Pfordresher lays bare the painful parallels between Charlotte’s life and her novel. Continue reading “Book-It Repertory Theatre’s JANE EYRE: Beyond the Theatre”

Intiman’s Native Gardens: Beyond the Theatre

A familiar story is taking place. Faces change but tensions remain the same. What to do about the new neighbors?

Playwright Karen Zacarías

In Native Gardens, playwright Karen Zacarías makes a scene, actually many, out of the dilemma a couple of couples face while getting to know ”the neighbors.”

Set in the adjoining backyards of two townhouses in Washington, D.C., stark differences are, readily, apparent. The Butley’s, a well-to-do middle-aged white couple have put years of loving care into their property. In fact, they hope their formal garden will be a prize winner in the upcoming annual horticultural competition. Continue reading “Intiman’s Native Gardens: Beyond the Theatre”