Symphony Space will present the world premiere of ULYSSES by the elevator repair service

Symphony Space, which celebrates James Joyce’s masterpiece Ulysses in its beloved annual Bloomsday on Broadway, marks the landmark occasion of the book’s 100th anniversary with a new commission in which Elevator Repair Service (ERS) brings the novel to a wild and illuminating theatrical life. Directed by John Collins, this world premiere event takes the stage at Symphony Space’s Peter Jay Sharp Theater on Thursday, June 16 at 8 p.m.

Ulysses, Joyce’s complex, maddening and epic novel about a single day in Dublin at the turn of the century, has perplexed scholars and readers for a century. It’s a fitting next challenge for the experimental theater company which has based its past works on Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury and Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, with much acclaimed results. The New York Times called ERS “one of the few truly essential theater companies in New York City”, described them as “a heroic company that dares to venture into literary fields where theater artists are known to sink and drown,” and wrote, “count me in if Elevator Repair Service decides to take the phone book on as their next project.”

At Symphony Space, a cast of seven ERS ensemble members – Dee Beasnael, Kate Benson, Maggie Hoffman, Vin Knight, Scott Shepherd, Christopher-Rashee Stevenson and Stephanie Weeks – will present a curated selection from each of the novel’s 18 episodes, in less than two hours, with a crazy dose of activity, fast-paced vocals, and a full embrace of the text’s iconic mix of styles. Using the simple format of an academic roundtable transformed into a wild theatrical embodiment, the play will resonate with both the novel’s literary achievement and its notorious chaos, debauchery and rejoicing.

Ulysses is directed by ERS Artistic Director John Collins, with stage design by dots, costume design by Enver Chakartash, lighting design by Mark Barton, sound design by Ben Williams and stage design by accessories by Patricia Marjorie.

Tickets and address

Tickets are $28 for non-members, $23 for members, and $17 for those 30 and under, and can be purchased at symphony space.org.

Symphony Space is located at 2537 Broadway (corner of 95th Street), New York, NY 10025.

COVID-19 Safety Policy

Everyone’s health and safety are top priorities at Symphony Space. Symphony Space requires all staff, performers and patrons to be fully immunized and that everyone (except performers on stage) wear masks while in the building. For more information on the institution’s current COVID-19 safety policy, please visit https://www.symphonyspace.org/your-visit/what-you-need-to-know.

About the cast

Dee Beasnael is an award-winning actor whose theater credits include The Securely Conferred, Vouchsafed Keepsakes of Maery S. (Abrons Art Center); Silence and Fear (French production on tour), All Over Everywhere (The Kitchen/MITU), In the Solitude of The Cotton Fields (NYU Skirball Center/Brooklyn Museum), 12 shouts to the 10 Forgotten Heavens (Whitney Museum of American Art) , and Police and Robbers (The Performing Garage). His voiceovers include Caillou (French/Canadian distribution), Sorghum and Spear (PepSqually Productions), Opal Watson Private Eye, (Pinna Originals) and Kyle’s World, (Pinna Originals).

Kate Benson is a writer and actress living in Brooklyn. Performances include Variations on the Main (Jack), Raw Bacon from Poland (Abrons Arts Center), I’ll Never Love Again (Bushwick Starr), Tiger, Tiger (on the Nature of Violence) (Dixon Place), Fondly, Collette Richland (Elevator Repair Service at New York Theater Workshop), Fleeing the Knife Holder (The Chocolate Factory), Nomads (the Incubator) and Good Person of Szechwan (The Public & LaMama). His pieces include [PORTO], produced by Bushwick Starr and WP Theater; A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of the Great Lakes (Obie winner), produced by New Georges with WP Theatre; Where are we going?; Super magical wild forest; and The Assembly’s I Will Look Forward to This Later (co-writer, with Emily Perkins-Margolin). She is a graduate of the Brooklyn College MFA playwriting program.

Maggie Hoffman is one of the founders of avant-punk performance ensemble Radiohole and The Collapsable Hole concert venue in New York City. She has starred in six ERS productions and will appear in ERS’ next show, Seagull, which will premiere at the NYU Skirball Center in July 2022.

Wine Knight. With ERS: Everybody’s Fine with Virginia Woolf; measure for measure; Sincerely, Collette Richland; To mix together; The Select (the sun also rises); The Sound and the Fury; No big company and Gatz. Other stage credits include The Music Man (Sharon Playhouse), Spam (JACK), Our Man in Havana (Portland Stage), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (2013 Broadway revival), Marie Antoinette (ART and Yale Rep), The Temperamentals (Barrow Group) and US Drag (thumb stick). Film and television credits include “Inventing Anna”, “Search Party”, “Orange Is the New Black”, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”, “Succession”, “Bull”, “The Blacklist”, and “Homeland”. He graduated from Yale University.

Scott Berger. In Scott Shepherd’s first ERS show, McGurk: A Cautionary Tale (1994), he slept on a radiator for 20 minutes. In Total Fictional Lie, he wore a fake mustache for eyebrows and ate lit matches. In Gatz, he read a novel aloud. Other ERS shows include Measure for Measure, No Great Society, Cab Legs and Shut Up I Tell You. He has worked with The Wooster Group since 1997, playing Hamlet in Hamlet and other roles in The Town Hall Affair; Old square; Poor theatre; To You, The Birdie (Phèdre); and Brace Up!, among others. He has two Obie Awards, for Gatz and Poor Theatre. His screen appearances include First Cow, El Camino, Bluff City Law, X-Men: Dark Phoenix, True Detective, Wormwood, The Young Pope, Jason Bourne and Bridge of Spies.

Christopher-Rashee Stevenson is a theater artist from Baltimore, Maryland. He was a SUITE/SPACE artist (’20-’21) at Mabou Mines and is a Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab ’18 alumnus. His work as a director and performer has been featured at Performing Garage, Tank, JACK, HERE Arts Center, Actor’s Studio, American Repertory Theatre, Millennium Film Workshop, Lincoln Center Education, LaMaMa and Eubie. Blake Jazz Institute.

Stephanie Weeks is an award-winning actress and director. She has performed at renowned theaters including Lincoln Center, Playwrights Horizons, Soho Rep, La Jolla Playhouse, among others. With Target Margin Theater, she received for her years of dedication, the OBIE for recognition of artistic achievement and commitment to excellence in theater as an associate artist. Stephanie also starred in the Melvin Van Peebles film Confessionsofa Ex-Doofus-ItchyFooted-Mutha, which was an Official Selection of the Tribeca Film Festival. Weeks’ TV credits include Tales of The City, starring Laura Linney, on Netflix; The Good Fight (CBS; and Law and Order (NBC). Her directing work has recently directed Colman Domingo’s A Boy and His Soul at the Kitchen Theater in Ithaca and Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed at the University of Utah, awarded for Outstanding Performance, and Production Ensemble by the Kennedy Center (Festivent Series).Other productions include “After Midnight” for the Target Margin Yiddish Theater Lab and Machinal by Sophie Treadwell at New York University for to name a few.She holds an MFA from the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and holds a School Diploma from the London Academy of Music and Drama.

Elevator Repair Service (ERS) is a New York-based company that creates original work for live theater with an ongoing set. The company’s shows are created from a wide range of texts that include found transcripts of trials and debates, literature, classic dramas and new plays. Founded in 1991, ERS is the author of an extensive body of work including more than 20 original theatrical productions. These won the company a loyal following and made it one of New York’s most acclaimed experimental theater companies. Gatz (a full-text production of The Great Gatsby), along with The Sound and the Fury (from Faulkner’s novel) and The Select (an adaptation of The Sun Also Rises) are among the best-known works of the society. The company’s output also includes new works by playwrights Kate Scelsa and Sibyl Kempson as well as works by Shakespeare and Chekhov. ERS productions share a commitment to taking risks and reinventing themselves, blending unusual texts with innovations in theatrical form. They feature the company’s signature dynamic performance style, coupled with a rigorous commitment to psychologically complex performance. ERS has received numerous awards and accolades.

Symphony Space is a multidisciplinary center for the performing arts where bold programming, presented in a particularly warm and welcoming environment, forges indelible relationships between artists and audiences.

Symphony Space’s core mission is to connect art, ideas and community through their performance and commitment to literacy and education through the arts. Known for a range of groundbreaking programs, including Selected Shorts, their immersive wall-to-wall concerts and innovative global arts education initiative, Symphony Space presents a full lineup of original, affordable (and free) programming in New York and around the world. communities across the country through tours, public radio shows, podcasts and virtual events. On their stages and in the classrooms they serve, Symphony Space promotes access to the arts across all disciplines.

Symphony Space was founded on the belief that the arts bring people together, transcend barriers, and celebrate both our similarities and our differences. Through adventurous and impactful performances, commissions and conversations, Symphony Space continues to reinvigorate these guiding principles, harnessing the power of the arts to engage, inspire and build community.

Symphony Space is located at 2537 Broadway on 95th Street.

Bloomsday on Broadway with the Elevator Repair Service is made possible through support from the Isaiah Sheffer Fund for New Initiatives. Irish Arts Center provides promotional support.

Daniel C. Williams