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The Immigrant

March 12 — April 7, 2019

March 12 — April 7, 2019

Playwright
Mark Harelik

Mark Harelik

Playwright

Mark Harelik has appeared in THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA and THE BEARD OF AVON at the Goodman Theatre. Off-Broadway, he has appeared in THE BEARD OF AVON and OLD MONEY. He also appeared in the national tour of THE HEIDI CHRONICLES. Regionally, he has appeared in numerous plays at The Mark Taper Forum, the American Conservatory Theater, Seattle Repertory Theatre, the Intiman Theatre, the Denver Center Theater Company, the La Jolla Playhouse, The Globe Theatres and South Coast Repertory Theater. Film credits include Election, Eulogy, Jurassic Park III, A Gnome Gnamed Gnorm, and Barbarians at the Gate. Television credits include Seinfeld, Star Trek Voyager, Boy Meets World, The Practice, Picket Fences, Cheers, The Single Guy, Players, Angel, Diagnosis Murder, and the television movies War Stories, The Partridge Family, Hefner Unauthorized and My Brother's Keeper. He is the author of THE IMMIGRANT, THE LEGACY, and HANK WILLIAMS — LOST HIGHWAY. Mr. Harelik is a Fox Foundation Fellow.

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Director
Jim Jack

Jim Jack

Director

Jim Jack (Director) returns to directing for GSP’s mainstage following the critically acclaimed productions of My Name is Asher Lev in spring 2016 and Trying in 2018. Directing credits for GSP’s Educational Tour and Community-based programs include: Terra Incognita; Our Town Now; Gabi Goes Green!; Austin the Unstoppable; IRL: in real life; New Kid; Peacemaker; and Break the Chains. Additional New York and regional credits include: The Road; Where is Home?; The Way It Was; K2 (Drama Logue Award for Outstanding Direction); Life and Limb; The Dumb Waiter; and The Zoo Story. Jim is the Director of Education and Outreach for the George Street Playhouse.

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Conceived By
Randal Myler

Randal Myler

Conceived By

Randal Myler has received two Tony Award nominations (Best Musical/Best Book of a Musical) and a Drama Desk nomination (Best Musical Revue) for IT AIN'T NOTHIN' BUT THE BLUES, which ran at both Lincoln Center and Broadway's Ambassador Theatre. LOVE, JANIS, Mr. Myler's musical biography of Janis Joplin, reached 700 performances at Eric Nederlander's Village Theater, where he also staged DREAM A LITTLE DREAM: THE MAMAS AND THE PAPAS MUSICAL with Denny Dougherty. LOST HIGHWAY received its premiere at the Tony Award – winning Denver Center Theatre Company and then moved to the Mark Taper Forum, the Old Globe, and the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. Regional directorial credits: Kennedy Center, Arena Stage, New Victory, B.B. King's in NYC, Geffen Playhouse, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Coconut Grove Playhouse, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Cincinnati Playhouse, Royal George, Virginia Stage, Missouri Rep, Meadow Brook and Bay Street. A 17-season veteran of the Denver Center, Mr. Myler's recent projects include TOUCH THE NAMES: LETTERS TO THE VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL, John Fante's 1933, the musical version of THE IMMIGRANT and the critically acclaimed Cuban-American play UNION CITY, NEW JERSEY, WHERE ARE YOU?, starring Rosie Perez. His latest work (co-authored with Dan Wheetman) is FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN: THE MUSIC OF THE COAL MINES, and he recently directed Betty Buckley in the new musical, DINER STORIES at the Denver Center.

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Mark Harelik

Mark Harelik

Conceived By

Mark Harelik has appeared in THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA and THE BEARD OF AVON at the Goodman Theatre. Off-Broadway, he has appeared in THE BEARD OF AVON and OLD MONEY. He also appeared in the national tour of THE HEIDI CHRONICLES. Regionally, he has appeared in numerous plays at The Mark Taper Forum, the American Conservatory Theater, Seattle Repertory Theatre, the Intiman Theatre, the Denver Center Theater Company, the La Jolla Playhouse, The Globe Theatres and South Coast Repertory Theater. Film credits include Election, Eulogy, Jurassic Park III, A Gnome Gnamed Gnorm, and Barbarians at the Gate. Television credits include Seinfeld, Star Trek Voyager, Boy Meets World, The Practice, Picket Fences, Cheers, The Single Guy, Players, Angel, Diagnosis Murder, and the television movies War Stories, The Partridge Family, Hefner Unauthorized and My Brother's Keeper. He is the author of THE IMMIGRANT, THE LEGACY, and HANK WILLIAMS — LOST HIGHWAY. Mr. Harelik is a Fox Foundation Fellow.

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Cast
R. Ward Duffy

R. Ward Duffy

Cast

R. Ward Duffy (Milton Perry) New York credits include Manhattan Theater Club, Lincoln Center, New Dramatists and the Cherry Lane Theatre among others. Regional credits include Speaking In Tongues (2012 Acclaim Award) Cincinnati Playhouse in The Park, Othello (2007 Arty Award) Pioneer Theatre Company, True West (Best Actor 2008 Best of the Suncoast) Banyan Theater Company; Rep of St. Louis, Indiana Rep, Missouri Rep, Asolo Rep, Merrimack Rep, Portland Center Stage, Old Globe, among others.  Television and film credits include Madame Secretary, Blindspot, Blue Bloods, Law & Order: Criminal Intent and SVU, Shades Of Blue, You Can’t Have It All
 

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Lauriel Friedman

Lauriel Friedman

Cast

Lauriel Friedman (Leah Harelik) New York: Vanity Fair, The Dingdong, The Winter’s Tale (Pearl Theatre Company); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (New York Classical Theatre); Fire (Theatre 54); The Merchant of Venice, The Two Gentlemen of Verona (Drilling Company). Regional: The Diary of Anne Frank (Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey); Pride and Prejudice, Peter Piper (Guthrie Theater). Workshops: New York Theatre Workshop, The Lark, Abingdon Theatre Company, Workshop Theater Company, National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene, and more. Training: Guthrie Theater B.F.A. Actor Training Program and London's Globe Theatre Education.

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Gretchen Hall

Gretchen Hall

Cast

Gretchen Hall (Ima Perry) Theatre: Broadway: Stickfly. Off Broadway: Saturn Returns, The Seventh Monarch. Regionally: A.C.T, The Old Globe, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Arena Stage, Theater Calgary, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, Westport Country Playhouse, Dorset Theater Festival, Shakespeare on the Sound, Center Stage and The Continuum Company. Television: The Blacklist, The Path, Elementary, Person of Interest, Gossip Girl, Law & Order and Lipstick Jungle. Film: The Weekend and Almost in Love. Education: BA from Fordham University, MFA from NYU Graduate Acting. Ms. Hall is a faculty member at Seton Hall University.

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Benjamin Pelteson

Benjamin Pelteson

Cast

 Benjamin Pelteson (Haskell Harelik) UPCOMING: Indecent (Oregon Shakespeare) THEATRE: Photograph 51 (EST), The Mines of Sulphur (City Opera), Wikipedia Plays (Ars Nova), King Lear, Cymbeline, Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window (Oregon Shakespeare), Disgraced (Denver Center), Merchant of Venice (Shakespeare Theatre), Peter and the Starcatcher, Dracula, Christmas Carol (Actors Theatre of Louisville), Murder of Isaac (Baltimore Centerstage), Angels in America (Wilma Theater), Lady Windermere's Fan (Williamstown), Hamlet (Capital Rep) others. TV: Homeland, The Americans, The Blacklist, Unforgettable, Law & Order, StartUp, Silly Little Game. Barrymore Nominee for Outstanding Supporting Actor Louis in Angels in America. BFA Carnegie Mellon.

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Russian-Jewish emigrant Haskell Harelik arrives at the port of Galveston, Texas in 1909 seeking refuge from his homeland.  With only his banana cart in tow, Haskell finds compassion and friendship from an unlikely couple, falls in love, and creates a pastoral life for his family.  About The Immigrant, USA Today said “the scenes evoke the rural era with the firm-handed clarity of a Jewish Horton Foote … they glow.”

"Haskell’s story is no doubt admirable and exceptional, epitomizing much that is wonderful about America and its history."

The Star-Ledger

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Photos by T. Charles Erickson 

View the playbill

Design Team Bios

Read. Talk. See:The Immigrant is this year's Book Club selection.  Package includes: A copy of the script, ticket to the performance, audience engagement guide and staff member discussion. 

The Immigrant is sponsored by The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation and Phil and Mindy Kirstein.

Watch the official trailer below!

 

 

 

"timely, heartwarming....an important moment in this theatrical season."

MyCentralJersey

"a theatrical gem....a moving and brilliant portrait of an American family"

Broadway World

"Pelteson is excellent...Hall is wonderful....Under Jim Jack's smooth direction, the relationships grow and deepen"

Scene on Stage

"beautifully dramatized"

Curtain Up

"poignantly charming....Jim Jack directs with compassion and skill"

NJ Arts Maven

"a beautiful story performed by an outstanding cast"

Says Me, Says Mom

Press
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A relatable 'coming to America' story centered on two very different couples

Playwright Mark Harelik's grandfather emigrated from his native Russia in 1909. Harelik's "The Immigrant," which centers on the patriarch's efforts to not only adapt but to soar in his new homeland, debuted in 1985. Yet the heartfelt family drama, at George Street Playhouse through April 7, is as relevant today as it was more than 30 years ago, director Jim Jack said. Learn More

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'The Immigrant' opens at George Street Playhouse; based on real life story

Opening at George Street Playhouse, “The Immigrant” by the grandson of an immigrant is based on the real-life accounts of Haskell Harelik that rings true today as the country wrestles with allowing those seeking a better life to live in the states. Learn More

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Director Jim Jack Talks About "The Immigrant" On Stage At George Street Playhouse

Mention of the immigration of the early 20th century evokes images of the “wretched refuse” floating into New York Harbor and washing up on Ellis Island. But not all of “your tired, your poor” landed in New York, and we learn about one of the exceptions in Mark Harelik’s play “The Immigrant,” on stage at the George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick from March 12 through April 7. Learn More

BWW Interview: Benjamin Pelteson in THE IMMIGRANT at George Street Playhouse

During the first 1/4 of The Immigrant, Haskell speaks only Yiddish. (I don't speak Yiddish, so I had to learn that phonetically thanks to a terrific coach, Motl Didner.) As Haskell begins to learn English, there's an accent that starts off quite heavy and modulates over time. So that's all technically pretty tricky. Learn More

World premieres, Mamma Mia on tap on NJ stages - The Immigrant

In addition to studying with a coach to get his Yiddish and accent correct, Pelteson also spent time studying pogroms and the first-hand accounts of those who arrived in America at the turn of the century. Learn More

A timeless script: Play about a Russian-Jewish immigrant’s struggles has modern overtones

Although a play at the George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick is set in the early 20th-century, its story of a Russian Jew’s flight from persecution and struggle to find acceptance in America has modern resonance. Learn More

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George Street Playhouse announces 2018-19 season

George Street Playhouse's 2018-19 five-play mainstage season features a Tony Award-nominated play, a Laurents/Hatcher Foundation Award winner set during the early days of the Civil Rights movement, a suspenseful courtroom drama, a heartwarming story of arriving in a strange land for the first time, and the world premiere of a new musical. Learn More