Join us for a staged reading of “A Picasso” by Jeffrey Hatcher.
It’s Paris, 1941. Pablo Picasso has been summoned from his favorite café by the German occupation forces to a storage vault for an interrogation. Miss Fischer, a beautiful and wily “cultural attaché” from Berlin, is eager to discover which of the three supposed Picasso paintings confiscated by the Nazis from their Jewish owners are indeed by the artist. When Picasso discovers the reason for this inquiry, a cat-and-mouse drama about art, politics, sex, and truth ensues.
“Artful, remarkable, and genuinely dramatic, with impressive sensitivity and wit.”—The New York Daily News
Directed by Mary Hall Surface and staring Ed Gero as Picasso and Shanara Gabrielle as Miss Fischer.
Special thanks to Michele Volansky, dramaturg of the original production of A Picasso
Mary Hall Surface is an award-winning director, playwright and teaching artist. Recent projects include being among the 10 playwrights for Arena Stage’s films May 22, 2020 and The 51st State, directing The Skin of Our Teeth (Constellation Theatre), The Second Shepherds’ Play (Folger Shakespeare Theatre), and Ella Enchanted (Adventure Theatre MTC). Nominated for nine Helen Hayes Awards, Mary Hall received the 2002 Outstanding Director of a Musical for her Perseus Bayou. As the founding artistic director of Atlas INTERSECTIONS Festival, she curated over 600 all-arts performances and events from 2009–2015. A museum educator, Mary Hall is the founding instructor of the National Gallery of Art’s Writing Salon and is a popular creative and reflective writing instructor with the Smithsonian Associates. She has written and directed four theatre productions for the National Gallery of Art, most recently Color’s Garden, inspired by the cut-outs of Henri Matisse. She has had 18 productions at the Kennedy Center, where she is a National Teaching Artist. www.maryhallsurface.com
Working across the country and in the Washington theater community since 1983, Ed is a sixteen-time nominee and four-time recipient of the Helen Hayes Award. Among the 200 professional productions he has done, (many as a decades-long artistic affiliate of the Shakespeare Theatre Company), he is perhaps best known for his performance as Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in the Arena Stage production of The Originalist by John Strand that toured the country from 2015 and arrived Off-Broadway in 2018. Notable performances include Falstaff in Henry IV, Part 1 at The Folger Theater, Mark Rothko in RED, and Scrooge in Ford’s Theatre A Christmas Carol. Since the pandemic, Ed appeared on film, in radio plays of Christmas Carol and The Tempest, presentations of Zoom Theater productions (King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Tru, and The African Company Plays Richard III) with a variety of theaters across the country. He also created a cooking show on YouTube “Cooking with Eddie: La Mia Cucina,” sharing traditional Italian dishes. He is also a Professor of Theater and Head of Performance maintaining a full-time teaching schedule at George Mason University. In 2019, Mr. Gero received the Congressional Gold Medal from the OSS Society for his narration of a documentary commemorating the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. In 2015, he was named a recipient of the prestigious Lunt-Fontanne Fellowship at Twelve Chimneys. www.edwardgero.com
Shanara Gabrielle is grateful to be joining this fantastic team for A PICASSO at The Phillips Collection! As a theatre artist working in a wide variety of mediums with a focus on gutsy, inventive, engaging theatre for all audiences, Shanara is keen to find points of intersection and discover new ways to shape the future of performance and civic engagement. As an actor, director, and producer driven by exploring stories of justice and tales of imagination, she is interested in creating new work and reimagining traditional texts with artists of courage and depth. Shanara’s acting credits in the DC area include - Signature: Easy Women Smoking Loose Cigarettes, Arena Stage: Junk; Shakespeare Theatre: Comedy of Errors, Romeo & Juliet; Taffety Punk: Trojan Women, Imagination Stage: Charlotte’s Web. NYC: The Wild Party, American Girls Revue, War Bonds, Twelfth Night. REGIONAL: Guthrie Theatre: She Loves Me, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville: A Christmas Carol, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis: Clyboure Park, Macbeth, Comedy of Errors; Great Lakes Theatre: Blithe Spirit; Stages: They’re Playing Our Song; The Black Rep: Black Pearl Sings; Northern Stage: Guys and Dolls, Lend Me A Tenor. NATIONAL TOUR: In The Mood. TV & FILM: Chicago Fire, The Enemy Within, House of Cards, Conan, Conviction, Guiding Light, indie films and many commercials. TRAINING: BFA, Musical Theatre, Webster Conservatory. OTHER: Princess Grace Foundation Award, AEA, SAG-AFTRA, SDC. CONNECT: www.shanaragabrielle.com, TW: @shanarag, IG: @shanaragabrielle
Jordanna Hernandez (she/her) is a queer, Chicane actor, writer, and educator. She’s a company member of 4615 Theatre and has performed with Imagination Stage, Spooky Action Theatre, among other local theatres. She tells stories of Chicane culture, of daughters and their mothers, of first-generation Americans, socio-economic inequity, of mental health, and of queerness. She lives to find light within darkness, transform it into art and use it to heal the world. Jords enjoys weightlifting, tennis, spicy food, flossing, and taking jokes too far.
Ann Greer is founding producer of theater programming at The Phillips Collection, beginning in 2010 when she also directed communications and marketing at the Phillips. Ann has produced staged readings, scenes from plays, and panel discussions, all with the goals of enriching the museum's presentation of artists and their work and of exploring museum practice. Past programs include staged readings of Art, Six Degrees of Separation, and Vincent in Brixton; and panels on new play development in DC and August Wilson's ten-play cycle of 20th-century Black America.
Ann has written about theater for The Washington Post, American Theatre, and Capitol File, among others. She was an arts reporter for WAMU and was the region's first online theater critic, for AOL Digital City Washington. She studied acting at Studio and Shakespeare Theatres, and was on the staff of Arena Stage and the Folger.
IMAGE: Pablo Picasso, The Blue Room, 1901, Oil on canvas, 19 7/8 x 24 1/4 in., The Phillips Collection, Acquired 1927 © 2022 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York