Leonie Ettinger (MA '16) Produces "A Stopping Place"

Wednesday, Jun 15, 2016

Planet Connections Theatre Festivity is pleased to announce the world premiere of A Stopping Place, a new one-man show written and performed by Stephen Powell. A Stopping Place, the first original play by Powell, brings to the stage a riveting exploration of the lasting effects that trauma inflicts on the individual, told through the personal meditations of a lone, anonymous character.

Performance Schedule:
Fri 6/17 at 7pm, Weds 6/22 at 7pm, Thurs 6/30 at 7:30pm, 
Sat 7/2 at 9pm and Sun 7/3 at 1pm

Written and performed by Stephen Powell
Directed by Clara Pagone
Producer: Leonie Ettinger
Stage Manager: AnnieRose Kafer
Assistant Stage Manager: Elizabeth Kristian

A Stopping Place is a play about connection: those bridges we form with one another, and those we don’t. Using memory, alienation, and metaphor, a nameless character confides in, and insulates himself from, the audience, who discover a man trying to confront something profound and impossible to articulate. Through his hardship, he explores the contours and limits of the bonds between the self and the other, the individual and society. Can we ever truly know another person, and what they hold in their past? Can we ever truly heal ourselves?

At the core of A Stopping Place is the ubiquity of trauma. No single person is unscathed by some form of violence, by neglect, by coercion. Each of us develops mechanisms to cope with these scarring memories in order to move beyond them. Since the source of the character’s trauma remains unspecified, the audience witnesses a struggle that transcends into their own. In recent years, much attention has been paid to the social safety net in America, as well as to mental health and domestic violence. A Stopping Place addresses the common theme of trauma underlying these vital social issues.

Stephen Powell is the playwright and performer in A Stopping Place, his first original play. He trained at Stella Adler Studio, and is a graduate of Harvard University. His major work includes playing Hal in Proof by David Auburn (STS Playhouse), Telling the Bees, a collaborative piece with Sina Heiss and Lonesome George Productions, and two summer seasons at Theater Barn. He has worked extensively with the graduate directors and playwrights of Columbia’s School of the Arts, most recently in 7 Deadly Sins (dir. Palina Jonsdottir), a modern adaptation from Brecht’s musical ballet, and in The Conflabbergation, by Becca Plunkett.

Clara Pagone (Director) is a screen and stage actor who has trained in Italy, Australia, UK, and USA. She came to New York to join SITI Company’s Inaugural Conservatory class, and is now a Phoenix Theatre Artistic Associate. Selected credits include directing How to Direct From Inside (a sold-out run at Midsumma Festival at La Mama Melbourne) and performing her own one-woman show, Mrs. Marx, at the Sarasolo Festival in Sarasota, FL.

Leonie Ettinger (Producer) is a performance curator, producer, and scholar who just received her master’s degree in Performance Studies at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Past New York collaborations include The Private Theatre, The Civilians, La Mama ETC, FringeNYC, and Franklin Furnace. Leonie is an artistic associate of The Living Theatre and the associate artistic director of Brave New World Repertory Theatre. She is a graduate of Goldsmiths College and Stella Adler Studio of Acting. This fall, she will pursue a Ph.D. at NYU’s German Department.

The Planet Connections Theatre Festivity (PCTF) is New York's premiere eco-friendly/socially conscious not-for-profit arts festival. Fostering a diverse cross-section of performances and events, the PCTF seeks to inspire artists and audiences both creatively and fundamentally, in a festive atmosphere forming a community of like-minded artists. At the heart of the Festivity are like-minded individuals striving to create professional, meaningful theatre, music and film, while supporting organizations which give back to the community at large.

As part of the PCTF mission, A Stopping Place is proud to partner with MCCNY Homeless Youth Services, a charity that supports a high-risk homeless population in New York City: young LGBT individuals in crisis. The organization provides emergency overnight services, connections to long-term housing, case management and advocacy groups.