Theater Jonesing

Kitchen Dog Theater's new season includes David Mamet and The Motherf**ker With the Hat

Kitchen Dog Theater explores touchy subjects in upcoming season

David Mamet
David Mamet's play Race is the second of four productions for Kitchen Dog Theater in 2013-2014. Photo courtesy of David Mamet official site
The Motherfucker with Hat
Bobby Cannavale and Chris Rock starred in the original Broadway production of The Motherfucker With the Hat, making its regional premiere with Kitchen Dog Theater. Photo courtesy of Drama Queen NYC
McKinney Avenue Contemporary
McKinney Avenue Contemporary continues to host Kitchen Dog Theater productions for the 2013-2014 season. Photo courtesy of MAC
David Mamet
The Motherfucker with Hat
McKinney Avenue Contemporary

There are some theater companies that aim solely for entertainment. Then there are those like Kitchen Dog Theater, whose stated goal is to "choose plays that challenge our moral and social consciences [and] invite our audiences to be provoked, challenged and amazed."

That mission is certainly evident in the 2013-2014 season, which features plays that tackle themes of social niceties, racial conflict, addiction and bullying. The season is split evenly between dramas and comedies, all of which are making regional premieres.

Kitchen Dog opens its season September 27 with Detroit, a play by Lisa D'Amour that was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize and won the 2013 Obie Award for Best New American Play. The comedy follows a couple whose attempts at establishing a friendship with their new neighbors backfires, which has them reevaluating their lives in unintended ways. It runs through October 26.

KDT's second production is Race, written by the esteemed David Mamet. As implied by the title, it examines racial conflict through a court case in which a wealthy white businessman is accused of raping a black woman. At the heart of the drama is how his lawyers defend him and how a new legal assistant brings ups things that often go unsaid. It runs November 15-December 14.

The third play is one with a familiar — and profane — name known to even casual theater fans: The Motherfucker With the Hat. It premiered on Broadway in 2011 and scored Tony nominations for Best Play and three of its five actors. In this comedy, a recovering alcoholic discovers another man's hat in the apartment he shares with his girlfriend, which leads to an ill-conceived quest for vengeance. It runs February 14-March 15, 2014.

The final regular production is Gidion's Knot, a drama about one of the most pressing issues in schools today: bullying. Set during a single parent-teacher conference, a mother and her son's teacher attempt to decipher fifth-grader Gidion's recent behavior. Trying to figure out whether he was the victim or the perpetrator is not as easy as it seems. It runs March 28-April 26, 2014.

Kitchen Dog also presents its annual New Works Festival in May and June 2014, featuring a yet-to-be-determined Main Stage Production, six staged readings, and PUP Fest highlighting work from up-and-coming playwrights.

All of Kitchen Dog Theater's 2013-2014 productions take place, as always, at McKinney Avenue Contemporary.