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Other Desert Cities

Other Desert Cities
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Jon Robin Baitz
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 57
Pub. Date: 2012
ISBN-10: 0822226057
ISBN-13: 9780822226055
Cast Size: 3 women, 2 men

About the Play:

A Finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Drama also Nominated for the 2012 Tony Award for Best Play

Other Desert Cities is a full-length drama by Jon Robin Baitz. The Wyeth family Christmas erupts when daughter Brooke arrives bearing a soon-to-be-published memoir full of long held family secrets. Knives are drawn, wagons are circled, and the family's very existence is put at risk.

Other Desert Cities tells the story of the Wyeth family. Once-promising novelist Brooke Wyeth returns home to Palm Springs after a six-year absence to celebrate Christmas with a copy of her latest manuscript – one she's not showing her parents. Her apolitical younger brother is a reality show producer, her dad a former movie actor turned politician, her mother a 1960s-era comedy writer turned socialite – but now long-buried secrets threaten to put her picture-perfect famous family back on the tabloid pages. Conflict ensues after Brooke announces that she is about to publish a memoir dredging up a pivotal and tragic event in the family's history – a book that focuses on the politically explosive and tragic death by suicide of her antiwar activist brother – a long festering wound that her socially prominent parents would rather not have revealed to the world, because there is a secret about the suicide they have kept from everyone for decades. In effect, Brooke draws a line in the sand and dares them all to cross it. Hold onto your seats – things are about to get bumpy. With her politically conservative parents trying to cling to their Reaganesque social status, the family is torn apart and must come to grips with its painful past.

Other Desert Cities premiered in 2011 off-Broadway at Mitzi E Newhouse Theater in the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts complex and was named Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play by the Outer Critics Circle. It subsequently transferred to Broadway at the Booth Theatre and was a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The play enjoyed widespread acceptance among leading regional theatres, and has become a popular choice for community theatre productions.

Cast: 3 female, 2 male

What people say:

"The most richly enjoyable new play for grown-ups that New York has known in many seasons… In his most fully realized play to date, Mr. Baitz makes sure our sympathies keep shifting among the members of the wounded family portrayed here. Every one of them emerges as selfish, loving, cruel, compassionate, irritating, charming and just possibly heroic…leaves you feeling both moved and gratifyingly sated." — The New York Times

"Astutely drawn…juicy and surprising." — New York Daily News

"Spending time with these messed-up, complicated people is a genuine pleasure." — New York Post

"Power, passion, and superbly crafted palaver stippled with blowdarts of witthis is what Baitz does best." — New York Magazine

"Other Desert Cities is for anyone who has ever complained that they don't write 'em like that anymore. Richly dramatic and keenly observant, it's a hugely satisfying mixture of the political and the personal." — BackStage

About the Playwright:

Jon Robin Baitz is an American playwright, screenwriter, television producer, and occasional actor. He is the creator of Brothers & Sisters, a television series that ran for five seasons on ABC. Other television work includes PBS's version of Three Hotels, for which he won the Humanitas Prize, and episodes of The West Wing and Alias. He is a two time Pulitzer Prize finalist, as well as a Guggenheim, American Academy of Arts and Letters, and National Endowment for the Arts Fellow.

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