‘The Motherhood Almanac’ Opening at Shelterbelt Theatre


Shelterbelt Theatre is pleased to present The Motherhood Almanac by Noah Diaz, at 3225 California Street, January 27- February 19, 2017.  Performances are Thursday/Friday/Saturday  at 8pm and Sunday at 6pm (except for the February 19 performance at 2pm.)

Ticket Prices:  (Thursdays | $12 • Friday/Saturday/Sunday | $20 – general, $15 – students, seniors 65+, TAG). Ticket sare on sale at http://www.shelterbelt.org (click box office), or boxoffice@shelterbelt.org or 402.341.2757.

On Saturday, January 28, the theatre will host a post-show talkback with the playwright.

A series of women, scattered across time and space, search for understanding of what it means to mother:  one writes a letter to her unborn daughter on Burger King napkins, one delivers a speech about knowing when mothering stops, one toasts her daughter’s new bride, and so on. This is a fiercely passionate tapestry about the life inside of each us, as told by women and the women who raised them.

The cast features: Eli Ami, Erin Stoll, Jenna Briggs, Kathy Longe, Jill Walmer and Sue Mouttet.

Stage Manager: Nichole Hawkins

Set/Properties/Costume Design: Cea Larkin

Lighting Design: Joshua Mullady

Projections: Martin Magnuson

Sound Design: Shannon Smay

“In September 2014, Noah sent me a monologue titled When a Mother Leaves Her Prenatal Appointment,Bloated and Lonely, She’ll Write a Letterto Her Unborn Daughter on Yesterday’s Burger King Napkin and stated that he was working on turning this into a full length play. I was intrigued.  What does a 21 year old man know about motherhood?  Then I read it and was floored,” says Shelterbelt Artistic Director, Beth Thompson. “This is the first time that I have witnessed a play’s entire process, from idea to script to Before the Boards stagedreading (2015) to an intense workshop process via Seven Devils andnow to full production. There was never a doubt in my mind that we would produce this piece.”

The Motherhood Almanac was chosen for the prestigious Seven Devils Playwriting Conference in Idaho in 2015, was among the top 25 finalists for the Chicago Blue Ink Playwriting Award and was selected from over 200 scripts for a full production at Shelterbelt Theatre.

“I have been surrounded by powerful, vulnerable, stubborn, open-hearted, and profoundly human women my entire life and this play is about and for them. It is not necessarily biography, but rather testament to the lives they’ve led and the lives they’ve raised,” says Diaz, a Council Bluffs native, about his first fully produced play. “I wanted to honor the ferocity of spirit that those women have and this play is the product of that labor.”

“I don’t think I’ve ever directed a play that continued to move me, night after night, the way this one does. I first read it early in the morning on Mother’s Day, and was blown away by both the language and the imagery. It is a feast for the ears, and I hope the final production will be a feast for the eyes, mind and heart, as well,” said Moira Mangiameli, the production’s director.

Diaz adds, “I think it’s been the overwhelming scope of what it means to be a mother that has touched me most of all. There is no one way to be a mother or to have a mother, so that there is an infinite number of ways to understand motherhood is humbling to me.”

“This show gives a fresh take on what it means to be a mother. All kinds of mothers are examined in this piece and Noah and Moira have constructed a stunning homage to perhaps the most complicated and beautiful relationship most of us will ever know,” said Thompson.

In the gallery, Shelterbelt presents mixed media by Julia Hinson and digital maniuplation by Roxanne Wach.  Shelterbelt Theatre is Omaha’s home for new plays. This is Shelterbelt’s 24th season, By Local/Buy Local,featuring scripts celebrating our local playwrights. Shelterbelt Theatre is a 2015 and 2016 recipient of the international 50/50 Applause Award by the International Centre For Women Playwrights, which applauds theatres that produce a season with an equal or greater number of plays written by female playwrights. (www.womenplaywrights.org).



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