Casting announced for “Future Labs” reading of Layalina at Goodman Theater

Casting announced for “Future Labs” reading of Layalina at Goodman Theater
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Casting announced for “Future Labs” reading of Layalina at Goodman Theater

Casting announced for the January 30, “Future Labs” reading of Layalina by Martin Yousif Zebari, directed by Azar Kazemi. The Goodman’s first streaming effort of 2021 is near capacity

Goodman Theatre announces the full cast for the FREE live reading of Layalina, January 30 at 7pm, continuing work on the first project of the new Future Labs program.

The full SWANA (South West Asian, North African) cast all make their Goodman debuts with this reading; find the full cast list below. Written by Martin Yousif Zebari and directed by Azar Kazemi, Layalina examines how families maintain their love in the midst of turbulent global and social change.

Future Labs develops works authored and directed by Black, Indigenous, Latinx, AAPI and other artists of color, curated by Quenna L. Barrett (Associate Director of Education and Engagement), Jonathan L. Green (Literary and New Works Manager) and Ken-Matt Martin (Associate Producer) and a Goodman Staff Evaluation Team composed of individuals of intersectional identities and in areas across the theater.

Goodman Theater in Chicago, Photo courtesy of the Goodman Theater

Goodman Theater in Chicago, Photo courtesy of the Goodman Theater

The FREE virtual reading of Layalina premieres January 30 at 7pm. Capacity is limited to 1,000 patrons and registration for this FREE event is required. Current run time of the production is two hours, including a 10-minute intermission. For more information, visit GoodmanTheatre.org/Layalina.

The Goodman is grateful for the generosity of its New Work sponsors, including: Pritzker Pucker Family Foundation and the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, Major Support of New Work; Ruth D. and Ken M. Davee New Works Fund, Major Support of New Play Development; The Glasser and Rosenthal Family, Mayer Brown LLP, and Shaw Family Supporting Organization, Support of New Work.

In 2003, newly wed Layal plans a future with her family as they prepare to immigrate to the U.S. from Baghdad. Living just outside of Chicago 18 years later, Layal’s life and responsibilities look unimaginably different from what she had envisioned two decades before.

Full Company of Layalina
By Martin Yousif Zebari
Directed by Azar Kazemi

Sahar Dika……………………..……….Karima/Layal
Arash Navarro Fakhrabadi………..…Sahir/Amin
Ethan Hova……………………..………Yasir/Mazin
Becca Khalil……………………….……Layal/Marwa
Revon Yousif……………………………Mazin/Yousif
Gloria Imseih Petrelli………………..…Stage Directions Reader

Designed primarily for Chicago-based writers who have not had a play produced at the Goodman, Future Labs will feature up to nine workshops and presentations, beginning with Layalina. Selected projects receive rehearsal time, artistic, dramaturgical and casting support and an optional free public reading. This new development series is the latest effort among the Goodman’s programs that support living writers and develop new plays—including New Stages, Playwrights Unit and more than two dozen individual artist commissions.

ABOUT GOODMAN THEATRE

Chicago’s theater since 1925, Goodman Theatre is a not-for-profit arts and community organization in the heart of the Loop, distinguished by the excellence and scope of its artistic programming and community engagement. Led by Artistic Director Robert Falls and Executive Director Roche Schulfer, the theater’s artistic priorities include new play development (more than 150 world or American premieres), large scale musical theater works and reimagined classics. Artists and productions have earned two Pulitzer Prizes, 22 Tony Awards and more than 160 Jeff Awards, among other accolades. The Goodman is the first theater in the world to produce all 10 plays in August Wilson’s “American Century Cycle.” Its longtime annual holiday tradition A Christmas Carol, now in its fourth decade, has created a new generation of theatergoers in Chicago. The Goodman also frequently serves as a production and program partner with national and international companies and Chicago’s Off-Loop theaters.

As a cultural and community organization invested in quality, diversity and community, Goodman Theatre is committed to using the art of theater for a better Chicago. Using the tools of the theatrical profession, the Goodman’s Education and Engagement programs aim to develop generations of citizens who understand the cultures and stories of diverse voices. The Goodman’s Alice Rapoport Center for Education and Engagement is the home of these programs, which are offered free of charge for Chicago youth—85% of whom come from underserved communities—schools and life-long learners.

Goodman Theatre was founded by William O. Goodman and his family in honor of their son Kenneth, an important figure in Chicago’s cultural renaissance in the early 1900s. The Goodman family’s legacy lives on through the continued work and dedication of Kenneth’s family, including Albert Ivar Goodman, who with his late mother, Edith-Marie Appleton, contributed the necessary funds for the creation of the new Goodman center in 2000.

Today, Goodman Theatre leadership also includes the distinguished members of the Artistic Collective: Rebecca Gilman, Henry Godinez, Dael Orlandersmith, Steve Scott, Kimberly Senior, Chuck Smith, Regina Taylor, Henry Wishcamper and Mary Zimmerman. Jeff Hesse is Chairman of Goodman Theatre’s Board of Trustees, Fran Del Boca is Women’s Board President and Megan McCarthy Hayes is President of the Scenemakers Board for young professionals.

Ray Hanania

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