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2012 Media release - This is Our Youth

MEDIA RELEASE: WEDNESDAY 8 FEBRUARY 2012

SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE, DAVID BINDER,
ERIC SCHNALL & JAYNE BARON SHERMAN PRESENT
THIS IS OUR YOUTH
14 – 25 MARCH 2012
SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE, DRAMA THEATRE

WITH:                     MICHAEL CERA, KIERAN CULKIN & EMILY BARCLAY
WRITTEN BY:      KENNETH LONERGAN
DIRECTED BY:   MARK BROKAW

Funny, moving and beautifully written’.
The Times

The play is outstanding.’
Indie London

Very funny . . . . . . supercool entertainment.’
The New York Times

Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin and Emily Barclay will bring a piece of New York City to the Sydney Opera House stage this autumn, with Kenneth Lonergan’s seminal work This is Our Youth – a darkly funny play about coming of age in New York in the 80s. Award-winning American director Mark Brokaw will re-visit the show (since directing its acclaimed world premiere season in 1996 and a revival in 1998) to work with the all-star cast for this new production. 

This is Our Youth traces a day in the lives of three angst-ridden, New York slackers trying to find a way to escape the gilded cage of their dysfunctional families and decipher their place in the world. Set in 1982, this is a timeless portrait of a disaffected generation, stifled and set adrift by the sudden affluence that came to characterise Reagan’s America. By turns touching, scathingly witty and bittersweet This is Our Youth gives a voice to a group of over-privileged and hyper-articulate kids in a way that questions the similarities in our youth today.

This Is Our Youth has become legendary among theatregoers for its edgy honesty and engaging reflection of the real world. In New York and London the play has seen its fair share of high profile actors including Mark Ruffalo, Hayden Christensen, Matt Damon, Colin Hanks, Chris Klein, Jake Gyllenhaal and Anna Paquin and now it’s Sydney’s turn to see Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin and Emily Barclay in these celebrated roles.

Director Mark Brokaw said, ‘This is Our Youth is one of the most beautifully written American plays of the last 20 years.  Kenneth Lonergan’s ear for these kids’ language, and feel for their emotional heart, bowls me over every time I hear the play.  It's funny, deeply moving, surprising - all at the same time.  It's a real gift to be able to share time with these three characters during their life-changing night in Manhattan.’

Jonathan Bielski, Executive Producer, Sydney Opera House said, ‘Sydney Opera House is excited to bring this thrilling new production of a modern American classic to the Australian stage.  We are delighted to be working with Broadway producer David Binder and this stellar cast, under the inspired direction of Mark Brokaw, and we hope that these young stars will attract a new audience for theatre.’

Canadian screen actor and BAFTA- and SAG-Award nominee Michael Cera is best known to audiences for his starring roles in TV series Arrested Development (2003 onwards) and films including Juno (2007), Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist (2008), Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010), Superbad (2007) and Youth In Revolt (2009).

Golden Globe-nominated Kieran Culkin has starred in films including The Cider House Rules (1999), Igby Goes Down (2002), Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010) and Margaret (2011). He is an accomplished stage actor and appeared in the highly acclaimed 2002 production of This is Our Youth in London’s West End alongside Colin Hanks and Alison Lohman.

AFI- and Inside Film Award-winning Emily Barclay is known for her on-screen role of Katrina in Suburban Mayhem (2006) for which she won the AFI Award for Best Lead Actress. On stage, she has appeared in Melbourne Theatre Company’s The Importance of Being Earnest with Geoffrey Rush, Belvoir’s Gethsemane (2009), That Face (2010) and alongside David Wenham and Judy Davis in The Seagull (2011). In 2012 she will appear in Belvoir’s Strange Interlude (from 5 May). 

Stage director Mark Brokaw is the Artistic Director of the Yale Institute for Music Theatre and will revisit This is Our Youth after having directed the world premiere in 1996, and the 1998 production starring Mark Rosenthal, Mark Ruffalo and Missy Yager. He has directed numerous stage shows, both on- and off-Broadway. He directed the world-premiere of the Pulitzer prize-winning How I Learned to Drive, for which he won a Drama Desk Award, Obie Award and the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Direction of a Play. This will be the first time his work has been showcased in Australia.

Pulitzer Prize and Academy Award-nominated writer Kenneth Lonergan also co-wrote the script for the acclaimed Scorsese-directed film Gangs of New York (2002). In 2000 he wrote and directed You Can Count on Me which went on to be nominated for two Academy Awards. He has written other plays including The Waverley Gallery (2000) and screen plays including The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle (2000) and Margaret (2011).

NOTES TO EDITORS
DATES & TIMES:
       14 – 25 March 2012 
                                        Tuesdays to Fridays – 8.00pm; Saturdays – 2.00pm & 8.00pm; Sunday – 1.00pm & 6.00pm
                                        * On Wednesday 21 March, there will be an additional matinee performance at 2pm followed by a post-show talk with the actors
VENUE:                        Sydney Opera House, Drama Theatre
TICKETS:                     From $69
BOOKING:                   Tickets on sale from 10 February 2012 
                                       
www.sydneyoperahouse.com / 02 9250 7777

MEDIA INFORMATION
For more MEDIA information, contact
Meera Hindocha, Senior Publicist. Sydney Opera House:
mhindocha@sydneyoperahouse.com / 02 9250 7834

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Sydney Opera House

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