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"A Sleeping Country" by Melanie Marnich

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The Los Angeles Theatre Center

514 South Spring Street

Los Angeles, CA 90013

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Join us for a reading of "A Sleeping Country" by this year's HUMANITAS honoree Melanie Marnich! Presented by Latino Theatre Company.

About this Event

Julia has The Worst Insomnia in the World. It’s threatening her health, her sanity, her relationship with her fiancé, everything. After all sleep-inducing treatments fail, her unhinged-but-brilliant psychiatrist suggests she has Fatal Familial Insomnia (an actual disease that seems to only affect Italians with a certain strain of royal blood). A very desperate Julia heads to Italy for a cure. And it’s there that she discovers a sleepless woman who shows her the difference between not sleeping…and being truly awake.

Written by Melanie Marnich

Produced by Latino Theatre Company

Directed by José Luis Valenzuela

Cast

Laura Mann, Rupak Ginn, Liz Fenning, Sharon Lawrence, Asia Pitts

*A reception will follow with music from the James Cornelison Trio.

Melanie Marnich is an award-winning television writer-producer and playwright. She co-created and serves as executive producer and co-showrunner for the upcoming Amazon series, The Expatriates. She’s written for Big Love on HBO; Showtime’s The Big C and The Affair (as co-executive producer); and for AMC’s Low Winter Sun. She also served as co-executive producer on The OA for Netflix. Her episode, “Come, Ye Saints” for Big Love earned her a Writers’ Guild award nomination for best drama episode. It was also named Best Television Episode of 2009 by Entertainment Weekly, rated third in TIME Magazine’s list of 10 Best TV episodes of 2009, and ranked in TV Guide’s 100 Best Episodes of All Time. She received a Golden Globe for her work on The Affair. She’s developed work with HBO, AMC, Joel Silver’s Silver Pictures, Amblin, Scott Free and TNT. Her plays have been produced at Manhattan Theatre Club, The Kennedy Center, Dallas Theater Center, Baltimore Center Stage, Steppenwolf Theatre Company and The Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Humana Festival. She is a member of The Playwrights’ Center and an alum of New Dramatists. She also serves on the board of trustees for the Humanitas Foundation.

Latino Theatre Company/Los Angeles Theatre Center Latino Theater Company's mission at The Los Angeles Theatre Center (the LATC), is to provide a world-class arts center for those pursuing artistic excellence; a laboratory where both tradition and innovation are honored and honed; a place where the convergence of people, cultures, and ideas contribute to the future.

José Luis Valenzuela is the Artistic Director of the Latino Theater Company (LTC), and The Los Angeles Theatre Center (LATC) and is also a Distinguished Professor and Head of the MFA Directing program at UCLA’s School of Theater, Film & Television. Valenzuela is an award-winning theater director, and has been a visionary and an advocate for Chicano/Latino Theater for over 30 years. He has directed critically acclaimed productions at major theaters both internationally and nationally including the LATC where he created the Latino Theatre Lab in 1985 and the Mark Taper Forum where he established the Latino Theater Initiative in 1991. Most recently he directed Karen Zacarias’ Destiny of Desire at Arena Stage, South Coast Rep, The Goodman Theatre, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He produced the national Encuentro Festival in 2014 and national and international Encuentro de las Americas in 2017.

As the Artistic Director of the Latino Theater Company, operators of the LATC, he has been responsible for developing its artistic vision and organizational mission of producing programming that represents the diversity of Los Angeles. In 2010, under Valenzuela’s leadership, the LATC was nominated for an LA Stage Alliance Ovation Award for “Best Theatre Season.” His recent directing credits at the LATC include: The Mother of Henry, Members Only, Dementia, for Encuentro de las Americas, A Mexican Trilogy: Faith Hope and Charity, La Olla – Plautus’s The Pot of Gold, La Olla – Plautus’s The Pot of Gold for the Getty Villa Theater Lab Series, Premeditation, Henrik Ibsen’s Peer Gynt at the Ibsen Theater of Norway in 2013Melancholia by The Latino Theater Lab, Faith, Hope and Charity (Parts I, II, III of A Mexican Trilogy) by Evelina Fernandez, Habitat by Judith Thompson, and La Victima by El Teatro de La Esperanza. In 2007, Valenzuela was featured in the New York Times for the LTC’s annual holiday pageant, La Virgen de Guadalupe, Dios Inantzin, at Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral. In 2002 he directed the world premiere of Dementia, written by Evelina Fernandez, which won the 2003 GLAAD Award for Outstanding Theater Production in Los Angeles. Other international directing credits include Manuel Puig’s Kiss of the Spider Woman at the National Theatre of Norway, and he has assisted his mentor, Norwegian director Stein Winge, with Hamlet, The Glass Menagerie, Barrabas, Pantagleize, Die Walkurie, The Inspector General and The Wild Duck.

Valenzuela’s film directing credits include Dementia currently in post-production; the award-winning film Luminarias for Sleeping Giant Productions and Distributed by New Latin Pictures; How Else Am I Supposed To Know I’m Still Alive? for Universal’s Hispanic Film Project, Una Vez Al Año Para Toda Una Vida, La Redada and A Bowl of Beings, for PBS’ Great Performances.

Valenzuela’s artistic vision and community commitment has garnered numerous recognitions, nominations and awards including the Ann C. Rosenfield Distinguished Community Partnership Prize and the Hispanic Heritage Month Local Hero of the Year Award sponsored by Union Bank and KCET – both awards recognize distinguished individuals for their contributions to improving the quality of life throughout their respective communities. Valenzuela also serves on the national Steering Committee of the Latina/o Theatre Commons.

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514 South Spring Street

Los Angeles, CA 90013

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