Hear short, contemporary stage plays with first-rate casts. Playing on Air brings together award winners and emerging young talent, and each play is followed by a conversation with the playwrights and cast. Tune in for great American plays with great American actors, hosted and produced by Claudia Catania.
HOW MY GRANDPARENTS FELL IN LOVE by Cary Gitter (Re-Release)
“A gorgeous high note...a Jewish screwball romance… uproarious and beautifully cast, with tone-perfect direction by Colette Robert."
— The New York Times
It's 1933, and a young Jewish immigrant has returned to his Polish hometown in search of a wife. On a snowy afternoon, he sets his sights on Chava, a savvy, sarcastic shopgirl in a local hat store.
Directed by Colette Robert (STEW, Behind the Sheet), HOW MY GRANDPARENTS FELL IN LOVE by Cary Gitter (EST’s Youngblood, The Sabbath Girl) features a sparkling cast: Eli Gelb (Skintight, Indignation) and Lucy DeVito (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” PoA’s Gun Show). After the play, host Claudia Catania moderates a conversation with the artists.
NAPOLEON IN EXILE by Daniel Reitz (Re-Release)
“I felt I really had given birth ... rebirth ... to Napoleon.”
“So wait. Am I Napoleon? Or do I need to look for a job?”
Everyday life is a battlefield for single mother Evelyn and her adult son Corey, who has ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder). But underneath their sparring over Minecraft and job applications, a game-changing crisis is bubbling.
Directed by Golden Globe winner Marsha Mason (“Grace and Frankie,” The Goodbye Girl), NAPOLEON IN EXILE by Daniel Reitz (New Dramatists, Ensemble Studio Theatre) is a moving, unexpectedly funny portrait of a family on the brink. Emmy nominee Jane Kaczmarek (“Malcolm in the Middle,” Good People) and Will Dagger (HBO’s “I Know This Much Is True,” PoA’s The Press Conference) star as mother and son. After the performance, the artists join host Claudia Catania to discuss writing for actors and bringing theater chops to the world of sitcom TV.
SKIN by Naveen Bahar Choudhury (Re-Release)
Nobody comes to the campus health clinic looking for love. But as he waits for the nurse to call him in, Robby (Vandit Bhatt) finds himself drawn to Angie (Nitya Vidyasagar), a disenchanted writer with problems of her own. Can two strangers find unexpected poetry in each other? And do they even want to?
SKIN by Naveen Bahar Choudhury (My Name is Yusuf, Ma-Yi Writers Lab) features Bhatt (“Quantico,” Indian Ink, “New Amsterdam”) and Vidyasagar (“Sesame Street,” The Glorious Ones) in a rom-com for cynics. Playwright Naveen Bahar Choudhury joins host Claudia Catania for a post-performance conversation.
THE FINAL INTERROGATION OF CEAUSESCU’S DOG by Warren Leight (Re-Release)
In the wake of the 1989 Romanian Revolution, a dictator’s beloved pet must answer for the crimes of his owner. What’s the cost of staying loyal to the hand that feeds you — especially if that hand belongs to a tyrant?
Jesse Eisenberg (Zombieland, Happy Talk, PoA’s The Blizzard) and Golden Globe winner Ed Asner (Elf, “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” PoA’s New York Story) open the 2021 Winter Mini-Season with a sly satire: THE FINAL INTERROGATION OF CEAUȘESCU’S DOG by Tony winner Warren Leight (“In Treatment”, Side Man, “Law & Order: SVU”). After the play, host Claudia Catania joins Asner and the playwright for a behind-the-mic interview.
Winter Mini Season Begins Next Sunday, February 7th!
Throughout February, Playing on Air returns with four episodes from our back catalog starting Sunday, February 7th.
BIRD by Rachel Bonds
The year is 2030. On the snowy outskirts of DC, an underground musician (Tony winner Julie White) and her pragmatic teenage daughter (Erin Wilhelmi) battle the forces, seen and unseen, that threaten their survival.
Directed by Adrienne Campbell-Holt (Colt Coeur, PoA’s 52nd to Bowery…), Bird is a world-premiere recording and, in partnership with the Axe-Houghton Foundation, a Wordsmith Duo commission.
After their previous run as mother and daughter in Broadway’s A Doll’s House, Part 2, White (Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus, “Alpha House”) and Wilhelmi (To Kill A Mockingbird, The Crucible) reunite in this final episode of the 2020 Fall Season. After the play, they join Bonds, Campbell-Holt, and host Claudia Catania for a behind-the-mic interview.