A COMEDY IN TWO ACTS.

Four Women. Two Men. 

  • WINNER, 2012 ESSENTIAL THEATRE PLAYWRITING AWARD
  • NOMINEE, 2012 GENE-GABRIEL MOORE PLAYWRITING AWARD

When a complaint is filed against one of the 70,000 teachers in New York’s public schools, they’re sent to a “Reassignment Center,” one of a series of empty offices in the Department of Education Building. There, they sit and wait for their case to be reviewed. Usually for months. Sometimes for over a year.

A claim of improper behavior by a failing student lands Evelyn Reid in “the rubber room,” where she encounters a group of teachers, some guilty, some not, who have long since lost any hope of returning to a classroom.

Over the course of the school year, these colleagues form an unlikely alliance, reminding each other of forgotten passions, emerging to face life outside in unexpected new directions. They also learn French and workshop a screenplay.

Evelyn in Purgatory was workshopped as part of Working Title Playwrights’ Ethel Woolsen Lab in July 2010, directed by Patricia Henritze, with dramaturgy by Suehyla El-Attar. The cast was Stacy Melich (Evelyn); Shelly McCook (Lila); Bobbie Elzey (Roberta); Matthew Myers (Toby); Mark Gray (Fred); and Megan Hayes (Candace). 

The play had its World Premiere on July 5, 2012 as part of the Essential Theatre Festival (Peter Hardy, Artistic Director) at Actor’s Express in Atlanta, Georgia. The production was directed by Betty Hart. The cast was Amanda Cucher (Evelyn); Jo Howarth (Lila); Betty Mitchell (Roberta); Jonathan Wierenga (Toby); Rial Ellsworth (Fred); Megan Hayes (Candace); Josie Burgin Lawson (Atwood); and Taylor M. Dooley (US, Candace).

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