“The Sensuality Party” at the New Group Opens April 15, 2016

April 11, 2016 | News, Off-Broadway, Previews | Tags:
“The Sensuality Party” at the New Group (Closed Friday May 13, 2016)
By Justin Kuritzkes
Directed by Danya Taymor
Preview by David Roberts
Theatre Reviews Limited

The New Group proudly presents “The Sensuality Party” as part of its 2015-2016 season.  This New York premiere of a new play by Justin Kuritzkes was developed through The New Group’s New Group/New Works play development program.  Directed by Danya Taymor, this production will play 18 performances only at college campuses across all five boroughs of New York City, with venues including Brooklyn College, LaGuardia Community College, Gallatin School (New York University), Baruch College, Lehman College, Pace University NYC Campus, Pace University Westchester Campus and the College of Staten Island.  Full schedule of venues and dates follows. “The Sensuality Party” features Catherine Combs, Jeff Cuttler, Katherine Folk-Sullivan, Jake Horowitz, Layla Khoshnoudi, and Rowan Vickers.

Brought to life in common rooms and student unions at college campuses across all five boroughs of New York City, Justin Kuritzkes’ new play “The Sensuality Party” depicts six college students – three women and three men – who reflect on an afternoon of group sex they shared during their first semester, and how what began as a rather casual experiment went suddenly and horribly wrong.  As they internalize and even fetishize this event, they battle their own disaffection and disconnection from the wider world.  Kuritzkes offers an incisive look at his own post-9/11 generation’s consciousness.

“The Sensuality Party” was developed over a couple years in our NewGroup/NewWorks program, in which we tailor-make our development process to suit the needs of each play.  When we decided to produce the play, we wanted to find a way to honor Justin’s intention that there be ‘a minimal divide between the audience members and the actors,’ and therefore we felt a non-theater setting with no technical barriers might be ideal,” says Artistic Director Scott Elliott.  “We’ve also wanted to expand the New Group/New Works program to works produced not just on the mainstage, but also in smaller, more intimate settings; “The Sensuality Party” is a perfect fit to launch this next stage of the program.  The subject and setting of the play suggested that performing at colleges might allow the play to resonate even more, while also making sure that peers of the young author and actors get to attend.  A bonus is that this is a rare opportunity for us to bring The New Group’s work to the outer-boroughs and reach a larger community.  We relish the adventure that this bold, thought-provoking play has inspired.”

“The Sensuality Party” plays April 25May 13 as follows:

Tuesday, April 26 at 7:00 p.m. and Wednesday, April 27 at 7:00 p.m.: Pace University NYC Campus (Eddie Layton Student Union, 9 Spruce Street, New York, NY)

Thursday, April 28 at 3:30 p.m. and Thursday, April 28 at 7:00 p.m.: Pace University Westchester Campus (Kessel Student Center, Gottesman Room, 860 Bedford Road, Pleasantville, NY)

Friday, April 29 at 7:00pm: Gallatin School, New York University (Jerry H. Labowitz Theatre for the Performing Arts, 1 Washington Place, New York, NY)

Monday, May 2 at 7:00 p.m.; Tuesday, May 3 at 7:00 p.m.; and Wednesday, May 4 at 7:00 p.m.: Brooklyn College (Roosevelt Hall, 206 Roosevelt Extension, 2950 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY)

Thursday, May 5 at 2:00 p.m. and Thursday, May 5 at 7:00 p.m.: Lehman College (Speech and Theatre Building, Room B-20, 250 Bedford Park Blvd. West, Bronx, NY)

Monday, May 9 at 7:00pm: College of Staten Island (Room 223, Center for the Performing Arts, 2800 Victory Blvd., Staten Island, NY)

Tuesday, May 10 at 7:00pm: Stella Adler Studio of Acting (31 West 27th Street, 3rd Floor, Studio 6, New York, NY)

Wednesday, May 11 at 2:30 p.m. and Wednesday, May 11 at 7:00 p.m.: LaGuardia Community College (Room C-401, 29-10 Thomson Avenue, Long Island City, NY)

Thursday, May 12 at 7:00 p.m. and Friday, May 13 at 7:00 p.m.: Baruch College (Skylight Room, 3rd Floor, 17 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY)