CAPE MAY – In a captivating, modern evaluation of identity and religion, the 2013 Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Disgraced” by Ayad Akhtar follows a married couple, Amir Kapoor, a Pakistan born Muslim, who left his faith and history behind to be a corporate lawyer, and his wife, Emily, a painter, inspired by Islamic culture. The couple hosts a small dinner party in their lavish Upper East Side apartment and soon, before anyone can stop it, polite etiquette is abandoned and the talk turns to politics, stereotypes and betrayal.
Roy Steinberg, award-winning director, producer, actor and producing artistic director of Cape May Stage, will direct the 2013 Pulitzer Prize winner, which will continue Cape May Stage’s investigation of freedom in the 2016 season. Steinberg says, “The freedom of religion and freedom of identity in post 9/11 America has never been more topical than now in this presidential election year. People say never discuss politics and religion. This play does both.”
Playing Amir, a lawyer who briefly helps his nephew with a case defending a man of Muslim faith, making his personal and professional life slowly unravel, is Rav Val Denegro. Rav is winner of the Breakout Action Star Award and Best Screenplay Award at the 2014 and 2012 Action on Film International Film Festival for “Taxi Wallah” and “Urban Turban.” Playing Emily, wife of Amir and emerging artist, is Katie Zaffrann whose New York theater credits include “Dijla wal Furat: Between the Tigris” and “The Euphrates,” and will soon include the world premiere of the musical “In My Body” at the Prince Theatre in Philadelphia.
Playing Isaac, a confrontational, self-assured art dealer, is Marc Geller. Marc recently played Doc in “West Side Story” at the Summer Theatre of New Canaan. His New York credits include Off Broadway productions of “Cloud 9,” “Nora” and “The Box Office Poison.” Playing Jory, a funny, rising star corporate lawyer and colleague of Amir’s, is Bliss Griffin. Bliss is a 2015 Barrymore Award winner for her work in “Little Rock” at Passage Theatre Company. Her New York credits include “Macbeth,” “The Importance of Being Earnest” and “Henry IV.”
Joshua Salvador will be playing Abe, the nephew of Amir. Joshua is a native of New Jersey and a Cape May Stage veteran. Salvador was a member of the 2014 Emerging Artist Program and since his graduation he has been training with the Barrow Group in NYC and The Shakespeare Group of New Jersey.
Hailed by New York Times as “terrific and turbulent, with fresh currents of dramatic electricity,” “Disgraced” runs September 14 through October 14. There will be a Pay-As-You-Wish matinee on September 17, a cultural talkback on September 22 with cast and crew, a half-price senior matinee on September 24 and a final talkback with cast and crew on October 7. The show runs Wednesday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. with matinees on Saturday and Sunday at 3 p.m. For ticket information, visit capemaystage.org or call the box office at (609) 770-8311.