23/24 Season


Theatre for a New Audience Presents
The Annie Dorsen Production
Prometheus Firebringer (CLOSED)
September 15–October 1, 2023
Hybrid Performance/Lecture
Written, Directed, Performed by Annie Dorsen
After Aeschylus
Off-Broadway Premiere

Running time: 45 minutes

Writer-director Annie Dorsen will use artificial intelligence to generate speculative versions of the missing sections of Aeschylus’s 2,500-year-old Prometheia trilogy.  Each performance will feature a different iteration performed by AI-generated masks.”— Zachary Stewart, TheaterMania

“What shall I do?” is a question at the heart of every Greek tragedy, observes philosopher Simon Critchley. When there are no good options, when every course of action comes with unbearable costs, how do you choose? This question inspires a new lecture-performance by Annie Dorsen, Prometheus Firebringer, which continues her exploration of the ambiguous impacts of technology.

In ancient Greek mythology, Prometheus stole the gods’ fire to give it to humans—sparking sudden and dramatic advances in technology and the arts, and dramatic new sources of conflict. His story is told in the 2,500-year-old Prometheia trilogy attributed to Aeschylus, of which only Prometheus Bound remains in full.

In Prometheus Firebringer, Dorsen uses the predictive text model GPT-3.5 (the same model that runs ChatGPT) to generate speculative versions of the missing story. Each night a chorus of AI-generated Greek masks performs a different iteration, while Dorsen engages the audience in reflections on power, knowledge, and doubt.

For the past decade Dorsen has been making work about how our reliance on computational tools and systems is changing our relationship to language, power, and thought—what we know and how we know it.

Three Free Post Performance Conversations with Ms. Dorsen and Guests (to be announced) will be offered on weekends. Details to follow.

Annie Dorsen is a theatre director and writer whose works explore the intersection of algorithms and live performance. Her most recent project, Infinite Sun (2019), is an algorithmic sound installation commissioned by the Sharjah Biennial 14. Previous performance projects, including The Slow Room (2018), The Great Outdoors (2017), Yesterday Tomorrow (2015), A Piece of Work (2013), Spokaoke (2012), and Hello Hi There (2010), have been widely presented in the US and internationally.

Her work has been presented at Performance Space New York (formerly PS122), Le Festival d’Automne de Paris, The Holland Festival, BAM’s Next Wave Festival, New York Live Arts, Kampnagel Summer Festival, Kaaitheater, and The New York Film Festival’s “Views from the Avant-garde” series, along with many others.

She is the co-creator of the 2008 Broadway musical Passing Strange, which she also directed.

A retrospective of Annie Dorsen’s algorithmic work was presented in 2022 at Bryn Mawr College with major support by the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage. The publication Algorithmic Theater: Essays and Dialogues, 2012-2022 was created as a literary companion to the event, collecting a decade of writings by and about Dorsen, including dialogues with artistic collaborators in addition to provocative essays on theatre and technology.

In addition to awards for Passing Strange, Dorsen received a 2019 MacArthur Fellowship, a 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship, and the 2014 Herb Alpert Award for the Arts in Theatre.

Ryan Holsopple, Video & Systems Designer
Ruth Waldeyer, Lighting Designer
Ian Douglas Moore, Sound Designer
Sukanya Aneja, Software Designer and Programmer
Okwui Okpokwasili, Voiceprint
Livia Reiner, Voiceprint
Harry Kleeman
, 3D Artist
Tom Sellar, Dramaturg
Natasha Katerinopoulos, Producer 

Original support for Prometheus Firebringer was provided to Bryn Mawr College by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, Philadelphia.

Prometheus Firebringer is supported in part by commissions from New York Live Arts’ Live Feed Residency Program with additional support from Partners for New Performance, and Media Art Xploration’s MAXmachina laboratory funded in part by Science Sandbox. The piece was developed with the support of the Eureka Commissions program created by Onassis Foundation, and the Mercury Store. The Off-off Broadway premiere was co-presented by the Chocolate Factory Theater, May 11-13, 2023.

Waiting for Godot (CLOSED)
By Samuel Beckett
Featuring Michael Shannon as Estragon and Paul Sparks as Vladimir
Toussaint Francois Battiste as a boy, Jeff Biehl as Lucky and Ajay Naidu as Pozzo
Directed by Arin Arbus
November 4 – December 23, 2023

Since their first appearance in a tiny Paris theatre in 1953, Samuel Beckett’s iconic down-and-outs Vladimir and Estragon have rarely been off the stage. Nearly every evening, somewhere on the globe, they show up for their dubious appointment with a savior named Godot who never comes, filling time with games and musing aphoristically on existence. Hilarious and heartbreaking, Waiting for Godot is the modern theatre’s indispensable document of rootlessness, uncertainty, and perpetually postponed deliverance. Godot will be directed by Arin Arbus (Resident Director, TFANA) whose critically acclaimed productions for the company include her OBIE Award-winning staging of Thornton Wilder’s The Skin of Our Teeth. This production will reunite actors Michael Shannon and Paul Sparks, who last worked together for TFANA in Ionesco’s The Killer, directed by Darko Tresnjak in 2014.

Arin Arbus (Director) Resident Director, TFANA, and the company’s former Associate Artistic Director, for whom she directed Denis Johnson’s Des Moines, The Winter’s Tale, The Skin of Our Teeth (Obie Award), Strindberg’s The Father and Ibsen’s Doll’s House in rep, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Taming of the Shrew, Macbeth, Measure for Measure, Othello, and most recently the critically acclaimed The Merchant of Venice starring John Douglas Thompson. She directed Terrence McNally’s Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (Tony nom. for best revival) with Audra McDonald and Michael Shannon on Broadway. Arbus spent several years making theatre with prisoners in association with Rehabilitation Through the Arts and in 2018, she directed an adaptation of The Tempest in a refugee camp in Greece for The Campfire Project.

Riccardo Hernández, Scenic Designer
Susan Hilferty, Costume Designer
Chris Akerlind, Lighting Designer
Palmer Hefferan, Sound Designer
Byron Easley, Choreographer
Bill Irwin, Creative Consultant
Andrew Wade, Voice Director
Jon Knust, Properties Supervisor
Jonathan Kalb, Dramaturg
J. David Brimmer, Fight Director


TFANA and Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Soho Rep and the NAATCO National Partnership Project’s

Public Obscenities (CLOSED)
Written and Directed by Shayok Misha Chowdhury

January 17 – February 25, 2024

Public Obscenities explores the pleasures and pitfalls of living in translation as it follows a queer studies PhD student returning to his family home in Kolkata with his Black American boyfriend.

This “gorgeously precise” (The New Yorker) bilingual (English and Bangla) new play had its premiere at Soho Rep in 2023 and enjoyed a very successful run. It was a New York Times Critic’s Pick which hailed Shayok Misha Chowdhury as “a writer with great promise.” 

Shayok Misha Chowdhury is a many-tentacled writer and director based in Brooklyn. A Mark O’Donnell Prize and Princess Grace Award recipient, Misha was an inaugural Project Number One Artist at Soho Rep, where he recently directed the world premiere of his playwriting debut Public Obscenities “with a swooning hypnotism reminiscent of the best works of neorealism” (New York Times, Critic’s Pick). Co-produced by Soho Rep and NAATCO, Public Obscenities was nominated for three Drama League and four Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Direction, and the cast won the Drama Desk Ensemble Award for embodying “the transnational world” of Misha’s “bilingual play with memorable authenticity, remarkable specificity, and extraordinary warmth.” Misha is also a Jonathan Larson Grant awardee for his body of work writing musical theater with composer Laura Grill Jaye; their as yet unproduced musical How the White Girl Got Her Spots and Other 90s Trivia was awarded the 2022 Relentless Award in honor of Adam Schlesinger and Philip Seymour Hoffman. Misha was also a collaborator on the Grammy-winning album Calling All Dawns. Other recent collaborations: Brother, Brother (New York Theatre Workshop) with Aleshea Harris; SPEECH (Philly Fringe) with Lightning Rod Special; MukhAgni (Under the Radar @ The Public Theater) with Kameron Neal. A Sundance Fellow, Misha is the creator of VICHITRA, a series of short films including Englandbashi (Ann Arbor Film Festival); The Other Other (Ars Nova); An Anthology of Queer Dreams (Audio Unbound Award finalist); and In Order to Become (The Bushwick Starr). A NYSCA/NYFA, Fulbright, and Kundiman fellow in poetry, Misha has been published in The Cincinnati Review, TriQuarterly, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Asian American Literary Review, and elsewhere. Residencies: Hermitage, Ucross, Rhinebeck Writers Retreat, SPACE on Ryder Farm, NYTW 2050, The Public’s Devised Theater Working Group, Ars Nova’s Makers Lab, Soho Rep’s Writer Director Lab, New York Stage and Film, Drama League, Mercury Store, BRIC. BA: Stanford. MFA: Columbia.


TFANA in association with Rose Theatre, London
Macbeth (an undoing) (CLOSED)
A Royal Lyceum Theatre Production
Written and Directed by Zinnie Harris
After William Shakespeare

April 5 – May 4, 2024

In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Lady Macbeth begins the play as the driving force who ruthlessly plans and implements regicide. But she soon disappears from the action and re-emerges in the last Act, guilt-ridden, hallucinating and tormented by sleep deprivation. What happened? Zinnie Harris imagines what might be the gaps in Shakespeare’s story, undoing the play as we know it and retelling it with Lady Macbeth at its center.

As Harris recently told BBC’s Start the Week, “The shame of the Shakespeare in a way is we lose one half of the marriage; we don’t see that through. I wanted to continue that journey by putting my feet in Lady Macbeth’s shoes and walking through the tale from her perspective.

Setting the play in 1930s Scotland during an economic depression and the pre-World War II rise of fascism, Harris incorporates Shakespeare’s original text both as written and reassigned to other characters, as well as integrating her own language. She also introduces class into the action in assertive ways, as Shakespeare’s play mostly excludes Scotland’s underclass.

Founding Artistic Director Jeffrey Horowitz observes, “As noted by scholar Emma King, the provenance of Lady Macbeth’s rage and guilt, murder and motherhood, masculine and feminine drives stretch back to Greek drama and characters such as Clytemnestra, Medea, and Orestes (who, like Lady Macbeth, is haunted by nightmares and cannot sleep). Zinnie Harris is not reclaiming Shakespeare’s play for any group. She is exploring the myth behind Lady Macbeth and questioning if the myth might take a different track. Is Lady Macbeth doomed and damned because she disrupts the patriarchy in the play? Must this cycle repeat?”

When Macbeth (an undoing) had its world premiere February 2023 at the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh, The Guardian praised its “audacious conjuring of Shakespeare’s Macbeth” and the “superb” Nicole Cooper as Lady Macbeth along with her costar Adam Best in the title role. With its UK company led by Cooper and Best, the production made its London premiere at the Rose Theatre March 2024.

Zinnie Harris, Associate Artistic Director, Royal Lyceum, is a multi-award-winning playwright, screenwriter and theatre director. She first came to prominence in 2000 with her early play Further Than the Furthest Thing (Tron Theatre / Royal National Theatre) which won the Peggy Ramsay Playwriting Award, the John Whiting Award, and a Fringe First Award and has now been translated and performed all over the world.

Her recent plays include The Duchess (of Malfi) (Royal Lyceum Theatre, Citizens Theatre); Meet Me at Dawn (Traverse Theatre / Edinburgh International Festival); This Restless House, three new plays based on Aeschylus’ Oresteia (Citizens Theatre / National Theatre of Scotland / Edinburgh International Festival), winner of Best New Play at the Critics’ Awards for Theatre in Scotland 2016 and shortlisted for Susan Smith Blackburn Award and UK Theatre Awards Best New Play; and How to Hold Your Breath (Royal Court Theatre), winner of the Berwin Lee Award 2015.

Her adaptations for the stage include Rhinoceros (Edinburgh International Festival), A Doll’s House (Donmar Warehouse), Master Builder (West Yorkshire Playhouse), and Miss Julie (National Theatre of Scotland).

Her screen writing includes two 90-minute dramas for Channel 4 (Richard Is My Boyfriend and Born with Two Mothers), and episodes for the BBC1 Drama Spooks. She was lead writer and Series Creator for the BBC1 Agatha Christie adaption Partners in Crime.

As a theatre director she has directed numerous main stage productions for the RSC, the Traverse Theatre, Royal Lyceum Theatre, and the Tron theatre. She won Best Director for the CATS 2017 for her direction of Caryl Churchill’s A Number at the Lyceum Theatre and recently directed Scent of Roses at the Lyceum Theatre. She is Professor of Playwriting and Screenwriting at the University of St. Andrews.

Macbeth (an undoing) is the first production in The Shakespeare Exchange, the exchange of two productions of Shakespeare in the 2024 and 2025 seasons between Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh and Theatre for a New Audience, New York. In the winter of 2025, TFANA’s staging of The Merchant of Venice, starring John Douglas Thompson and directed by Arin Arbus, will play at the Royal Lyceum.




All of the above productions offer free complementary humanities programming exploring the language and ideas of the authors and productions.
TFANA Talks: Post-performance conversations with artists and thinkers that take place during the run of each production.
Bianca Vivion: Reflections: Commentator and essayist Bianca Vivion hosts post-performance discussions with guests from the worlds of the arts and activism, lensing the work onstage through political and cultural questions that matter to a rising generation of New Yorkers.
360 Viewfinder: An online publication exploring each production. 


Enhanced Flexibility This Season

  • Free exchanges or refunds in the event a patron has been diagnosed with, tested positive for, or exhibited symptoms of COVID-19; or has been in close proximity to any individual who has been diagnosed with, tested positive for, or exhibited symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Subscribers have access to free ticket exchanges until curtain and unlimited guest tickets.
  • Single ticket buyers and New Deal ticket buyers have access to no-fee ticket exchanges until 24 hours prior to curtain. (A $5 exchange fee applies after that point.)




TFANA will also continue its popular New Deal Program, which offers a $20 ticket for the best available seats at all performances for all productions, for those age 30 and under or full-time students of any age. (Proof of age or full-time student status required.) Click here to learn more.

*Each New Deal ticket holder must be 30 years of age and under or full-time students. ID required for pick up.

All productions, artists, and dates are subject to change. 23-24 Subscriptions are non-refundable, subject to change, and valid only for the 23-24 Season.

Deloitte and Bloomberg Philanthropies are the 2023-2024 Season Sponsors.

Principal support for Theatre for a New Audience’s season and programs is provided by the Bay and Paul Foundations, the Howard Gilman Foundation, the Jerome L. Greene Foundation Fund in the New York Community Trust, The SHS Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, and The Thompson Family Foundation.

Theatre for a New Audience’s season and programs are also made possible, in part, with public funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities; Shakespeare in American Communities, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature; and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.