Play | Utah Premiere
January 12—27, 2024
From award-winning playwright Karen Zacarías (The Book Club Play) comes a contemporary comedy that reminds us: we can’t always choose our neighbors. Rising attorney Pablo and his doctoral candidate (and very pregnant) wife Tania, have just purchased a D.C. home next to a well-established couple with a prize-worthy English garden. But an impending barbeque for Pablo’s colleagues and a delicate disagreement over a long-standing fence line soon spirals into an all-out border dispute, exposing both couples’ notions of race, taste, class, and privilege. Zacarías’ hilariously biting play sees well-intentioned neighbors turned into feuding enemies in a garden party culture clash for the ages.
“Timely, thoughtful, and hilarious.” – BroadwayWorld
“Native Gardens” is presented in arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc.
KAREN ZACARÍAS (Playwright) was recently hailed by American Theater Magazine as one of the ten most-produced playwrights in the US. Her award-winning plays include The Copper Children, Destiny of Desire, Native Gardens, The Book Club Play, Legacy of Light, Mariela in the Desert, The Sins of Sor Juana and the adaptations of Just Like Us, Into the Beautiful North and How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent. She is the author of ten renowned TYA musicals (including Ella Enchanted: The Musical) and the librettist of several ballets.She is one of the inaugural resident playwrights at Arena Stage, a core founder of the Latinx Theatre Commons – a large national organization of artists seeking to update the American narrative with the stories of Latinos – and she is the founder of the award-winning Young Playwrights’ Theater (YPT). YPT was cited by the Obama administration as one of the best arts-education programs on the nation. Karen was voted 2018 Washingtonian of the Year by Washingtonian Magazine for her advocacy work involving the arts. She is an inaugural 2019 Sine Fellow for Policy Innovation at American University and is selected by The League of Professional Theatre Women to receive the 2019 Lee Reynolds Award, given annually to a woman in theater who has helped illuminate the possibilities for social, cultural or political change. In 2021, Karen was awarded a United States Artists Fellowship award. Karen lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband and three children. www.KarenZacarias.com
TIMOTHY DOUGLAS (Director) helmed the PTC productions of Clybourne Park and Fences. Recent credits include The Color Purple (Signature Theatre; Helen Hayes Award for Best Musical), Jeanine Tesori & Tazewell Thompson’s Blue (New Orleans Opera, the U.S. premiere of Natasha Gordon’s Nine Night (Roundhouse Theatre), Lynn Nottage’s Clyde’s (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Terence Blanchard’s Champion (Boston Lyric Opera), the premiere of Something Happened in Our Town (Children’s Theatre Company), the U.S. premiere of Tristan Bernay’s adaptation of Frankenstein (Classic Stage Company), and the Great Theatre of China’s production and tour of Disgraced. He has made productions for Arena Stage, Cleveland Playhouse, Denver Center, Downstage New Zealand, Folger Shakespeare Theatre, Guthrie Theater, Juilliard School, Kennedy Center, Mark Taper Forum, Milwaukee Rep, Off Broadway, Portland Center Stage, Red Bull, Steppenwolf, among many others, including Yale Rep with the world premiere of August Wilson’s Radio Golf. Instagram: @timdirects | TimothyDouglas.org
EMILY NACRISSA GRIFFITH* (Production Stage Manager) This is Emily’s eighth season with Pioneer Theatre Company. She graduated from UVU with multiple awards for her work, including the Kennedy Center’s Meritorious Achievement Award. She has also managed multiple productions for Sundance’s Summer Theatre.
JAMES O. HANSEN* (Stage Manager) is thrilled to be in his first season here at Pioneer Theatre Company! Recent PTC credits include: Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, The Rocky Horror Show, and Christmas in Connecticut. Clue (starring Sally Struthers), The Wedding Singer, and A Christmas Carol at The Gateway Playhouse. Joseph…Dreamcoat (starring David Archuleta), Mary Poppins, and Wonderland at Tuacahn Amphitheatre. James earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts Management from Dean College. Special thanks to his Mom, Family, and Ostie for their love and support! DHH.
BOB CLINE (Casting) is the founder of Bob Cline Casting in New York. He has cast film, TV, commercials, over 75 national tours, and numerous regional theaters across the country and has been associated with the casting for PTC for many years. Cline is currently a proud faculty member in Pace University’s theatre program, in charge of the senior BFA musical theatre majors. He is the Associate Director of Broadway Artists Alliance, enjoys working with The Open Jar Institute, and often teaches through The Growing Studio and The Actor’s Loft.
PIONEER THEATRE COMPANY (PTC) Now celebrating its 62nd season, the award-winning PTC is Utah’s premiere professional theatre company and leading arts organization of the West. Led by Artistic Director Karen Azenberg and Interim Managing Director Diane L. Parisi, PTC presents world-class productions that celebrate diversity in culture and society and serve as the connecting bridge between art and scholarship as an affiliate of the University of Utah.
ACTORS’ EQUITY ASSOCIATION (AEA) Founded in 1933, AEA represents more than 51,000 professional Actors and Stage Managers nationwide. Equity seeks to foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of society and advances the careers of its members by negotiating wages, improving working conditions and providing a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans. Actor’s Equity is a member of the AFL-CIO and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. #equityworks
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
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SYNOPSIS: From award-winning playwright Karen Zacarías (The Book Club Play) comes a contemporary comedy that reminds us: we can’t always choose our neighbors. Rising attorney Pablo and his doctoral candidate (and very pregnant) wife Tania, have just purchased a D.C. home next to a well-established couple with a prize-worthy English garden. But an impending barbeque for Pablo’s colleagues and a delicate disagreement over a long-standing fence line soon spirals into an all-out border dispute, exposing both couples’ notions of race, taste, class, and privilege. Zacarías’ hilariously biting play sees well-intentioned neighbors turned into feuding enemies in a garden party culture clash for the ages.
LANGUAGE: Mild adult language
VIOLENCE: Characters in a verbal conflict express themselves physically by destroying and threatening to destroy each other’s property.
FOR WHICH AUDIENCES?: Contains some adult themes and arguments, pregnancy/childbirth, microaggressions, and discussion of racism. If Native Gardens were to be made into a film, it would likely be PG-13.