The following press release was sent to the Bloomingtonian:
Constellation presents the Indiana Premiere of Webster’s B!+@# by Jacqueline Bircher, starring Diane Kondrat and Henry Woronicz
Woodward/Newman Award Winning Play | On Stage Jan 25 – Feb 11 at the TJP
Bloomington, IN – A Play About Words and the People Who Define Them. Constellation is ringing in the new year with its 23/24 Season Woodward/Newman Award Winning Play: Webster’s B!+@# by Jacqueline Bircher, on stage January 25 – February 11 at the Ted Jones Playhouse. Directed by Constellation’s Associate Artistic Director, Daniella Wheelock, this Constellation Original tackles the power of language, gender dynamics, and office politics in the age of social media. Featuring a star-studded cast of favorites like Diane Kondrat and Henry Woronicz, this witty new play is not to be missed!
When their Editor-in-Chief gets caught using some unexpected profanity, the employees of Webster’s Dictionary find themselves at the center of an internet uprising over gender and obscenity in the age of social media. As office politics collide with ambition, morality, and lexicography, the future of the English language hangs in the balance.
Constellation is thrilled to be bringing this comedic and powerful new play to Bloomington audiences! Webster’s B!+@# was the recipient of this season’s Woodward/Newman Award, an exclusive honor offered by Constellation, started through the support of Joanne Woodward, Newman’s Own Foundation, and the Newman family, celebrating Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward’s tremendous history of work on stage and screen. The award honors the best unpublished play of the year with a cash prize of $3,000 and a full production as part of Constellation’s Mainstage season.
Not only is Constellation excited to be producing the Indiana premiere, it’s thrilled to announce the return of a number of beloved actors to the Constellation stage, including Diane Kondrat and Henry Woronicz! Diane Kondrat, starring as Joyce, was last seen in Cardinal Stage’s Every Brilliant Thing in 2021. Now based in Portland with a robust west-coast theatrical career, Diane is no stranger to Bloomington, having starred in Cardinal Stage’s Doubt and Ann. Henry Woronicz, starring as Frank, is an actor and director, with extensive experience in regional theater, who starred in Julius Caesar on Broadway and served as the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Artistic Director for several seasons. Henry also played the Stage Manager in Cardinal Stage’s first ever production of Our Town.
Also returning to Constellation are Jenni Putney and Jay Hemphill. Jenni, starring as Gwen, recently relocated to Bloomington from New York after having performed regionally and Off-Broadway; she was last seen in the Bloomington Playwrights Project’s Heist in 2022. Jay Hemphill, an Indianapolis-based actor last seen in Cardinal’s The Great Gatsby and Rounding Third, is starring as Nick. Making her Constellation debut is AJ Huq, a fourth year Indiana University Theater student majoring in Musical Theater, who will be playing Ellie, Gwen’s younger sister.
Webster’s B!+@# is directed by Constellation’s very own Daniella Wheelock. Daniella recently started as Constellation’s Associate Artistic Director, having served for just over six months. This will be her directorial debut with Constellation, but her work was seen previously in Bloomington in Cardinal’s The Roommate in January of 2020. Joining the creative team are Scenic Designer David Wade, Lighting Designer Chelsie McPhilimy, Costume Designer Becky Underwood, Sound Designer Abigail Hughes, Props Master Aubrey Krueger, Props Artisan Barb Steininger, Stage Manager Katie Ayer, and Assistant Stage Manager Brooke Werner.
Webster’s B!+@# runs January 25 – February 11 at the Ted Jones Playhouse and tickets are on sale now! Tickets start at $35 for adults and $20 for students. In addition to traditionally priced performances, Constellation offers Pay What You Will Thursdays for all Thursday evening performances. Supported by Jessika and Bryan Hane, this program allows audiences the chance to choose their own ticket price (from $5-$75) when attending on Thursday evenings. Tickets are available through Constellation’s website (seeconstellation.org), over the phone at (812) 336-9300 (Mon-Fri 12-5pm), or in-person at 122 S Walnut St (open Wed-Fri 12-5pm).
The future of the English language hangs in the balance! Help define history January 25 – February 11 at the Ted Jones Playhouse in Downtown Bloomington.