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DISNEYLAND UNVEILED (1954) -In front of an early rendering by Disney legend Peter Ellenshaw, Walt Disney unveils his plans for Disneyland to a national television audience during the premiere of €œ”Disneyland”€ the television show, October 27, 1954. (Image credit: Disneyland)

Playwright Lucas Hnath

As Soho Rep’s Spring show goes on sale, FEED wants to introduce you to the totally amazing playwright who gave birth to A PUBLIC READING OF AN UNPRODUCED SCREENPLAY ABOUT THE DEATH OF WALT DISNEY, the extraordinary wordsmith Lucas Hnath. WALT DISNEY is a fantasia that centers on Walt’s final hours and his desire to control every shred of his image and legacy.

Lucas’s plays have been featured at Actors Theatre of Lousiville’s Humana Festival of New American plays, The 2012 Prelude Festival produced by our friends at CUNY/Martin E. Segal Theater Center, and he has an upcoming production early next year of his terrifc Alfred P. Sloan Science commission, ISAAC’S EYE, at Ensemble Studio Theater here in New York. Lucas is also a member of New Dramatists.

Firstly, here is a scene from his Humana play DEATH TAX, starring two Soho Rep favorite actors: Quincy Tyler Bernstine (WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT…, BORN BAD) and Judith Roberts (FEED’s reading of Chekhov’s THE WOOD DEMON). DEATH TAX looks at an old millionaress who insists that her Caribbean nurse is methodically poisoning her at the behest of her daughter, so the daughter will avoid a death tax that has been temporarily lifted by the federal government. The rhythmic, considered, clipped and stylized tone you may pick-up on in this excerpt is consistent throughout Lucas’s plays and is one of the reasons we find him such an exciting writer.

http://youtu.be/G-C57NLEZjc

Secondly, we have a clip in which Lucas discusses DEATH TAX. This is such an exciting segment because Lucas seems to laser in on an overall stylistic and dramaturgical conceit that many of his plays share. He could just as well be talking about WALT DISNEY!

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