American Dreams

Leila Buck
Tamilla Woodard

Working Theater, a Drama Desk and AUDELCO award winning Off Broadway company, in partnership with Round House Theatre (Bethesda, MD), Salt Lake Acting Company (Salt Lake City, UT)), Marin Theatre Company (Mill Valley, CA), a consortium of cultural institutions representing greater Hartford lead by  HartBeat Ensemble, The Bushnell and UConn’s Thomas J. Dodd Center, (Hartford, CT)  Arizona State University Gammage (Tempe, AZ) and Texas Performing Arts (Austin, TX) join forces to present a unique co-production– leading the theater industry (and the 2020-2021 season) with the return of a full-scale production this fall—of American Dreams.  Written by and featuring Leila Buck (HKEELEE (Talk to Me), American Dreams is directed by Working Theater’s Co-Artistic Director Tamilla Woodard (Where We Stand, WP Theater, associate director, Hadestown on Broadway) and will be live-streamed as an  interactive event.

American Dreams is a participatory performance that imagines a world where the only way to gain U.S. citizenship is by competing in a nationally-televised game show run by the government. Through America’s most valued democratic process — voting — audience members decide who will win instant citizenship. Taking a page from America’s favorite game shows, this playful interactive production uses voting, polling, trivia and more to explore what it means to be a citizen and how we choose our neighbors.

American Dreams is a play that needs to happen now as we are approaching an election,” says Working Theater Co-Artistic Director Mark Plesent. “I think that the American Experiment is failing on so many levels. American Dreams offers us a safe opportunity, full of humor, to experience our individual complicity in the dangers facing our nation, and also points to ways to change course, beginning with ourselves.” 

In a unique partnership with a cross section of leading theaters and cultural organizations, representing every region of the United States, the 2020 live interactive presentation of American Dreams follows a much celebrated and sold-out run at The Cleveland Public Theatre in 2018.