GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE BRINGS BESTSELLING BOOK SERIES “LETTERS FROM A NUT” BY TED L. NANCY TO THE STAGE
A SPOTLIGHT ENTERTAINMENT SERIES PRODUCTION WRITTEN BY AND STARRING AUTHOR TED L. NANCY AND DIRECTED BY PIERRE BALLOÓN; JERRY SEINFELD PRODUCES
PREVIEWS BEGIN JUNE 23, OPENING NIGHT IS JUNE 28
LOS ANGELES (March 23, 2017) – Letters from a Nut by Ted L. Nancy, a brand-new show based on the bestselling book series of prank letters and their responses from Ted L. Nancy (aka Barry Marder), will debut in June at the Geffen Playhouse as part of the theater’s Spotlight Entertainment Series. The show is produced by Jerry Seinfeld, and written by Nancy, who will star alongside Beth Kennedy and Sam Kwasman. Pierre Balloón will direct.
Letters from a Nut by Ted L. Nancy will begin previews in the Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater at the Geffen Playhouse on Friday, June 23, with opening night set for Wednesday, June 28. Closing performance is Sunday, July 30.
Ted L. Nancy is a customer in need of service. He writes to the city of Huntington Beach requesting a permit for operating his Electronic Nose Blowing Machine, invites Czechoslovakian President Václav Havel to become Treasurer of Ted’s Vacuum Club, asks Nordstrom about buying a mannequin that looks like his deceased neighbor to present to the grieving widow, and more. Time after time, well-meaning representatives offer earnest replies to his letters. Nancy brings his madcap collection of correspondence to the Geffen stage for a one-of-a-kind show that is both outlandish and uproarious.
Asked to comment on the show, Nancy said, “I like my fork! I eat the following foods with my fork: gumbo, melon chunks, cake, hamburger, imitation crab, yam, teriyaki.”
Added Seinfeld, “What is Ted’s compulsion to disturb innocent hardworking people? People who are clearly doing nothing more than attempting to conduct their business in a dignified manner?”
The first book in the Letters from a Nut series was published in 1997 with an introduction by Jerry Seinfeld. The series includes More Letters from a Nut, Extra Nutty! Even More Letters from a Nut, Hello Junk Mail!, Ted L. Nancy’s Afternoon Stories, and All New Letters from a Nut. A children’s book, Letters From A Nut's Family Tree, a collection of letters from Nancy’s ancestors, was published by Scholastic in 2013. The books are published all over the world and have been translated into Japanese and Portuguese. They are suitable for all ages.
In 2016, Hulu released Scammers, a web series of animated shorts by Nancy. Produced by Sundance Productions, the episodes feature hilarious exchanges between a relentless Nancy and the internet scammers who send mass emails promising financial wealth.
LETTERS FROM A NUT BY TED L. NANCY
Written by Ted L. Nancy
Directed by Pierre Balloón
Produced by Jerry Seinfeld
Previews: Friday, June 23, 2017
Opening Night: Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Closing Night: Sunday, July 30, 2017
Ted L. Nancy as Himself
Beth Kennedy as Service Representative
Sam Kwasman as Pagliacci
Scenic & Lighting Designer Daniel Ionazzi
Dramaturg Phyllis Murphy
Casting Director Phyllis Schuringa, CSA
Illustrator Alan Marder
Video Carolla Digital
Monday No performance
Tuesday – Friday 8:00 p.m.
Saturday 3:00 and 8:00 p.m.
Sunday 2:00 and 7:00 p.m.
Tickets are on sale beginning Monday, March 27. Prices start at $65.00. Available in person at the Geffen Playhouse box office, by phone at 310.208.5454 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org. Fees may apply.
Rush tickets for each day’s performance are made available to the general public 30 minutes before showtime at the box office. $35.00 General / $10.00 Student
Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater at the Geffen Playhouse
10886 Le Conte Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90024
Through a variety of events and other opportunities, the Geffen Playhouse welcomes college students to experience the live storytelling presented on our stages. We are proud of our association with UCLA’s School of Theater, Film, and Television, and open our doors to all college students throughout Los Angeles. More information is available at www.geffenplayhouse.org/college.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Ted L. Nancy (Playwright, Barry Marder)
Ted L. Nancy is a pseudonym used by Barry Marder, a comedian, former writer for Seinfeld and the co-writer of DreamWorks’ animated hit Bee Movie. He has written for Bill Maher, Jay Leno and David Letterman. He also wrote with George Carlin. Currently, he is involved with Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.
Pierre Balloón (Director)
Pierre Balloón is an innovative, progressive French director. He specializes in abstract films using stark images and vivid colors. His movie Le Petit (The Small) is a good example. He has directed theater, most recently in the West Indies, garnering numerous awards and much acclaim for his production of The Odd Couple, starring Champak Daya (Oscar) and Gunjan Harjeet (Felix). Monsieur Balloón lives with his wife, Paithooon, their two children, Meryle and Roy, and their dog Mushroom. He is the son of Marcel Balloón, a former lighting director, and Babette Peep of the Peep Sisters. His current project is Letters From A Nut by Ted L. Nancy.
Jerry Seinfeld (Producer)
Jerry Seinfeld is an American comedian, actor, writer, producer and director. He is known for playing a semi-fictional version of himself in the sitcom Seinfeld, which he created and wrote with Larry David. Seinfeld was a writer and producer on DreamWorks’ Bee Movie, for which he also voiced the lead role. He is the creator and host of the web series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.
Beth Kennedy (Service Representative)
Beth Kennedy most recently appeared in the film Kong: Skull Island. She can also be seen in Mother’s Day, New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day and Georgia Rule, all directed by Garry Marshall. Additionally, she performed in Marshall’s opera directing debut, The Grand Duchess, at the Los Angeles Opera. Kennedy is a long-standing member of the Troubadour Theater Company, producing and performing in more than 30 original productions throughout Southern California and beyond, most recently Little Drummer Bowie (Ovation Recommended) at the Garry Marshall Theatre/Falcon Theatre in Burbank. Previously, she produced and performed in Haunted House Party, a Roman Comedy (Ovation Recommended) at the Getty Villa. She is the recipient of multiple Ovation, Backstage and LA Drama Critics Circle Awards, most notably the LADCC Natalie Shaffer Award for Emerging Comic Actress. Television credits include Speechless, Agents of Shield, The Bridge, Gilmore Girls and CSI. She is a graduate of CalArts and Loyola Marymount University.
Sam Kwasman (Pagliacci)
Sam Kwasman is a veteran actor and comedian. He has appeared on such television shows as The Bob Newhart Show, Family Ties, Lou Grant, Airwolf, MADtv, Evening at the Improv and The Jerry Lewis Telethon, in addition to lending his voice to such cartoons as Robot Chicken with Seth Green and as Little Quacker on the Cartoon Network’s The Tom and Jerry Show. As a stand-up comic, he has appeared at The Comedy Store, the Improv, The Ice House and comedy clubs around the country. For more than 17 years, Kwasman has worked as the voice of Donald Duck at Walt Disney Studios.
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ABOUT GEFFEN PLAYHOUSE
Geffen Playhouse has been a hub of the Los Angeles theater scene since opening its doors in 1995. Noted for its intimacy and celebrated for its world-renowned mix of classic and contemporary plays, provocative new works and second productions, the not-for-profit organization continues to present a body of work that has garnered national recognition. Named in honor of entertainment mogul and philanthropist David Geffen, who made the initial donation to the theater, the company was founded by Gilbert Cates, and is currently helmed by Artistic Director Randall Arney, Executive Director Gil Cates, Jr., and Co-Chairs of the Board Martha Henderson and Pamela Robinson. Proudly associated with UCLA, the Geffen welcomes an audience of more than 130,000 each year, and maintains extensive education and community engagement programs, designed to involve underserved young people and the community at large in the arts. www.geffenplayhouse.org
Ashley Bodul, Geffen Playhouse
310.208.6500 Ext. 159