The Great Leap

It's San Francisco 1989 and Manford Lum, renowned for his basketball hustle in Chinatown, tries to talk his way on to a college team destined for a "friendship" game in China. Coach Saul blocks him hard, but Manford rebounds and launches himself on a journey to a homeland he's never known. Bouncing between Beijing and San Francisco, between 1989 and 1971, this clever and relentless play looks at America's arms-length relationship with Communist China and the post-Cultural Revolution through a story about two generations of basketball players.

This production has been nominated for several Barrymore Awards including Excellence in Scenic Design, Projection Design, Lead Performance and Overall Production.

Playwright: 
Lauren Yee
Director: 
Seth Rozin
Seth Rozin co-founded InterAct Theatre Company in 1988, and has led the organization for the past 27 seasons. He has directed over 50 productions for InterAct, including THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY (Best Director, Philadelphia Weekly in 2010), PERMANENT COLLECTION (2004 Barrymore nomination for Outstanding Overall Production), IT’S ALL TRUE (2001 Barrymore nominations for Outstanding Director and Outstanding Overall Production), and LEBENSRAUM (1999 Barrymore Awards for Outstanding Direction, Outstanding Overall Production and Outstanding Ensemble). He has twice been named "Best Director" by the Philadelphia Inquirer for the world premiere of Thomas Gibbons' 6221 in 1993 and for LEBENSRAUM. Seth has also directed for the Fountain Theatre (Los Angeles), Blue Heron Theatre and the 45th Street Theatre (New York), as well as regionally with Act II Playhouse, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Philadelphia Young Playwrights and the University of Pennsylvania. Seth is the author of several plays, including MEN OF STONE, MISSING LINK, BLACK GOLD, TWO JEWS WALK INTO A WAR… and THE THREE CHRISTS OF MANHATTAN, which have been produced across the country and in Australia. He also wrote the book, music and lyrics for A PASSING WIND, which was featured in the inaugural Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts at the Kimmel Center in 2011. Seth is the recipient of two fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the National New Play Network’s 2007 Smith Prize, a commission from the National Foundation for Jewish Culture, and two Barrymore Award nominations. He is the recipient of a 2014 “Shepherd of Peace” award by the Good Shepherd Mediation Program and a 2015 “Difference Maker” by the South Philly Review. Seth currently serves as President of the Board of the National New Play Network, as well as the Philadelphia Artists Collective, and has served on the Boards of the Women's Theatre Festival, Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia, New Paradise Laboratories and Fresh Visions Youth Theatre. He has served on funding and award panels for the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, New Jersey State Arts Council, Philadelphia Cultural Fund, Theatre Communications Group, Philadelphia Theatre Initiative and Illinois Arts Council. Seth is also the Chair of the Philadelphia New Play Initiative, a campaign to improve the climate for new work
Lighting Designer: 
Peter Whinnery
Costume Designer: 
Natalia de la Torre
Projection Designer: 
Lyell Hintz
Venue : 
InterAct Theatre, Philadelphia

InterAct is a theatre for today's world, dedicated to commissioning, developing, and producing new and contemporary plays that explore the social, political, and cultural issues of our time. Through both its artistic and educational programs, InterAct utilizes theatre as a tool to promote civic discourse and stimulate dialogue around the most pressing and complex issues we face in contemporary society. InterAct values ARTISTIC RISK, which we express by maintaining a robust commitment to producing new plays. Through its world premiere productions, Young Voices Monologue Festival, active involvement in play development, 20/20 Commissions, Core Playwrights program, leadership role with the National New Play Network and Philadelphia New Play Initiative, InterAct has established itself as the region’s leading proponent of new plays. InterAct values CIVIC ENGAGEMENT, which we express by tackling plays of societal relevance, and fostering positive social discourse around the important, complex, sometimes controversial stories, issues and ideas contained in those plays. Through our Speaker Sunday and Coffee Conversation post-performance talk backs, our free public convenings and symposia, and our partnerships with community and academic organizations, InterAct consistently offers its constituents opportunities to deepen their engagement with the thematic content in its plays. InterAct values DIVERSITY, which we express by being extremely mindful in our play selection, our artistic and administrative hiring practices, our venue design and long-term efforts to develop non-traditional theatergoing audiences. InterAct Theatre was named Best Established Theatre in 2015 by Philadelphia Magazine.

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