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To the Orchard

Playwright Les Hunter

Playwright Les Hunter

TO THE ORCHARD

College student Rachel Bergman is propelled to reveal her sexual identity to her conservative father, who has hidden his own past from the family for years. An orthodox rabbi, a queer studies professor, and the spirits of Robert Plant and Virginia Woolf inhabit this slightly magic-realist play about family, making mistakes, retribution and coming clean.

WE ALL HIDE. THE QUESTION IS HOW TO STOP?

I loved that there was a struggle between finding answers in the grounded world and looking to some other metaphysical geography where scripture, history, and dream swirl together.
— JPP Panelist

"JPP's nomination of my play TO THE ORCHARD was instrumental in helping Cleveland-based theater group Playwrights Local 4181 select and especially promote my play to a diverse audience. JPP's mission to bring new, distinct and innovative Jewish plays to a wide audience of theatergoers is immensely important in building inroads between communities of disparate theatergoers, Jewish or otherwise." - Les Hunter

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Les Hunter wrote for all three parts of the collaborative Jackson Heights Trilogy (Theatre 167, pub., Indie Theatre Now). Other dramatic projects include his plays Cyrano de Bergen County, New Jersey (published: Playscripts), Lion of the East (Bates College, America-In-Play), Notes Towards a Dialectical Theatre Deconstructed, Reconstructed, and Ultimately Discarded: A Love Story (St. Joseph’s College, Eat It Fest, Playwrights Local 4181) To the Orchard (Foundation for Jewish Culture New Play Grant) and First Base Coach with Elana Averbach (licensed: Brooklyn Publishers); an American adaptation with Ozen Yula of his play, For Rent (LPAC, dev., The Lark); a devised piece, What is Love? with Anjanette Hall (Baldwin Wallace University); a screenplay, Lion (Dubai Film Connection); and a musical, ’99, with Ben Morss of the band Cake (Theatre 167). Les’ essays, articles, and short stories have appeared in American Theatre Magazine, Fiction Southeast, OffOffOnline, The Dramatist, Cutbank Literary Magazine, Experimental O’Neill, The Eugene O’Neill Review, Ecumenica, and Comparative Drama. Les is an Assistant Professor of English and theater at Baldwin Wallace University, Literary Director of Theatre 167, past Curator of New Plays at LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, a member of the  Playwrights GYM at Dobama Theatre, and co-founder of the Brooklyn Playwrights Collective. He has held residencies at Millikan University and Soaring Gardens and is a past participant of the Mellon School for Theater and Performance Research at Harvard University. MA: Brooklyn College, MFA: Boston University, PhD: Stony Brook University.

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