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July 23, 2015

Chautauqua Theater Company Continues Season
with Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel,
Artistic Director Vivienne Benesch Directs


(Chautauqua, NY) Chautauqua Theater Company (CTC), under the leadership of Artistic Director Vivienne Benesch and Managing Director Sarah Clare Corporandy, presents Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel from July 24 through August 2 on the Bratton Stage.

Directed by CTC Artistic Director Vivienne Benesch, the cast is lead by CTC 2013 Conservatory alumna Tangela Large (CTC’s Clybourne Park; Pittsburgh City Theatre Company’s Mr. Joy; Trinity Rep's Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike), as Esther and Kathryn Hunter Williams (PlayMakers Rep.) as Mrs. Dickson. Conservatory Actors Matthew Baldiga (American Conservatory Theater), Kyle Vincent Terry (Brown/Trinity), Kate Eastman (The Juilliard School) and Whitney White (Brown/Trinity graduate) complete the cast.

Intrigue and Romance from a Pulitzer-Prize Winning Playwright

Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s beautifully written and intensely personal story weaves a delicate tapestry of the joys and sorrows of an African American seamstress in 1905 New York City. Esther sews elegant intimates for socialites and prostitutes alike as a vibrant cast of characters plays part in her determined search for love and respect in a world that seems to overlook her. “Intimate Apparel is about filling in the story of people whose stories were never told,” explains CTC Artistic Director Vivienne Benesch, who directs the production. “I am so excited to be working on a play that is going to join the canon of great American plays with the likes of Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams.”

Nottage’s collection of work focuses on the lives of those often neglected by history. “All of my plays are about people who have been marginalized… who have been erased from public record,” says Nottage. Her Pulitzer Prize-winning play Ruined has received an Obie Award, the Lucille Lortel Award, New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award, Drama Desk Award, and Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Play (Manhattan Theatre Club, Goodman Theatre). Other plays include Intimate Apparel (New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play; Roundabout Theatre, Center Stage, South Coast Repertory); Fabulation, or The Re-education of Undine (Obie Award; Playwrights Horizons, London’s Tricycle Theatre); Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers, and Poof! Nottage is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2007 MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant, the National Black Theatre Festival’s August Wilson Playwriting Award, the 2004 PEN/Laura Pels Award for Drama, and the 2005 Guggenheim Grant for Playwriting, as well as fellowships from the Lucille Lortel Foundation, Manhattan Theatre Club, New Dramatists, and New York Foundation for the Arts. She is a member of The Dramatists Guild, an alumna of New Dramatists and a graduate of Brown University and the Yale School of Drama, where she is a visiting lecturer.

The creative team for Intimate Apparel includes Alexis Distler (Set), Anne Kennedy (Costumes), Scott Bolman (Lighting) and Justin Ellington (Sound). Bonnie Brady is Production Stage Manager.

Tickets for Intimate Apparel are $35 and are on sale now. Performances are July 24 through August 2. For more information, please visit

About Chautauqua Theater Company
Dedicated to the next generation of theater artists, the development of new work, first-rate productions of modern and contemporary classics, and fresh insight into Shakespeare’s canon, CTC produces the best of a year-round regional theater within an eight week summer season as the resident theater of the Chautauqua Institution. Chautauqua Theater Company is where the finest theater artists of tomorrow bridge the gap between their training and the professional world.

About Chautauqua Institution
The pre-eminent expression of lifelong learning in the United States, Chautauqua Institution is a 140-year-old community on the shores of Chautauqua Lake in southwestern New York State that comes alive each summer with a unique mix of fine and performing arts, lectures, interfaith worship and programs, and recreational activities.

Roya Kousari
Marketing Director, Chautauqua Theater Company 
Office: 716.357.6437
Cell: 412.448.4712