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August 4, 2009

Diverse City Theater Explores Racial & Social Politics
in RACE MUSIC Beginning September 3rd @ 8PM
at The Beckett Theatre for Limited Run

Former WQXR President Warren Bodow Pens Play;
Features Chris Ceraso, Brandon Jones, Kevin Kelleher, Penelope Lowder,
Teresa Stephenson and Julia Sun; DCT's Victor Lirio Directs

RACE MUSIC by Warren Bodow

For Immediate Release
Press Contact:
Janet Appel Public Relations LLC

NEW YORK—Diverse City Theater Company ("DCT") today announced its 2009 Mainstage production of "Race Music" by Warren Bodow, directed by DCT’s Artistic Director Victor Lirio. Performances will begin Thursday, September 3rd @ 8PM thru Saturday, September 19th @ 8PM. "Race Music" will play at Theatre Row’s The Beckett Theatre located at 410 West 42nd Street in New York City and will feature Chris Ceraso*, Brandon Jones*, Kevin Kelleher*, Penelope Lowder*, Teresa Stephenson and Julia Sun.

“Race Music” is set in a metropolitan Midwestern city in 1999. Lebron Malek, a 26 year-old classical music lover, applies for a radio-announcing position at a classical music radio station but is rejected because he is black. Six characters of varying colors and ancestral origins, struggle to come to terms with the changing racial landscape of our country in pre-Obama 1999.

“With affirmative action being a ‘hot button’ issue from the classroom to the boardroom, ‘Race Music’ raises the question: how much has changed in American racial and social politics since 1999? The answer remains to be seen as we continue to hear real-life stories of racism and racial profiling six months after President Obama is elected,” said DCT’s Artistic Director Victor Lirio.

He added: “The play takes a hard and nuanced look at prejudice, race relations, and social politics. It examines how racial stereotyping informs our opinions, stirs our emotions, and conflicts with our instinct to appear unbiased. However, the human condition is deep and complex. ‘Race Music’ proves that despite our flaws as human beings, we can evolve.”

A self-proclaimed “second act” playwright, Mr. Bodow was formerly President of New York classical radio station, WQXR (recently sold by The New York Times to WNYC and Univision Radio). His full length play, “Harry the Hunk on His Way Out,” was produced at The Cherry Lane Theatre in October 2007. He has a number of short plays that have been presented at Beowulf Alley Theatre’s “Out to Lunch Series” in Tucson, Arizona, including his Valentine Trilogy of one-acts. Mr. Bodow is a member of Tucson’s Old Pueblo Playwrights and has served on the Boards of the New York State Broadcasters Association and the Newhouse School at Syracuse University.

Actor, director, and producer Victor Lirio directed Cassandra Medley’s award-winning play, “Noon Day Sun,” for DCT’s Mainstage 2008 to audience and critical acclaim earning Audelco Award nominations for Best Dramatic Production of the Year and Best Play, and Time Out New York’s Critics Choice Pick. He has directed and produced several plays for DCT’s Mainstage and Green Room Series since 2005 including Kristine Reyes’s “Quarter Century Baby,” Jorshinelle Taleon-Sonza’s “Pure” (The Cherry Lane Theatre), Eric Gamalinda’s “Resurrection,” among others, as well as commissioned, developed, and curated DCT’s 2006 and 2007 theater festival of one-act plays. Victor most recently appeared in Chay Yew’s “Long Season” at Huntington Theatre in Boston, directed by Peter Dubois (starring Tony Award winner Cady Huffman), and Christine Toy Johnson’s “Paper Son,” directed by Evan Yionoulis at Queens Theatre in the Park. Victor produced Tony Award winner Lea Salonga’s sold-out and critically acclaimed concert at Carnegie Hall in November 2005.

“Race Music” will begin performances on September 3 thru September 19, 2009 at The Beckett Theatre at Theatre Row located at 410 West 42nd Street in New York City with the following performance schedule:

September 3 to 5, 2009: Thursday-Saturday at 8PM
September 5, 2009: Saturday @ 2PM
September 8 and September 15: Tuesdays @ 7PM
September 9 to 19, 2009:  Wednesdays to Saturdays at 8PM
September 12 and 19, 2009:  Saturdays 2PM

Producing Director:  Natasha Marco; Managing Director/Marketing: Martha Zamirski; Line Producer: Megan Kingery; Creative Director: David Derr; Assistant Director: Christopher Kloko; Production Stage Manager: Chandra LaViolette*; Assistant Stage Manager: Paul Herbig; Set & Lighting Design:  Maruti Evans; Sound Design:  Elizabeth Rhodes; Costume Design:  Arnulfo Maldonado.

* Member of Actors' Equity Association

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About Diverse City Theater Company

Diverse City Theater Co. Inc., is an independent not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization-run by artist playwrights, directors and actors - that focuses on promoting diversity and multiculturalism in the theater arts. Its mission is to commission, develop and produce powerful and though-provoking original plays that explore and examine diversity issues in our national culture, create multiculturally fluent theater audiences and advocate the non-traditional casting of actors.

Formed in 2003, Diverse City Theater Co., Inc. is based in New York City. For more information, visit the organization's website at