September 13 Fundraiser for the Tibet Fund and the American Himalayan Foundation

During the run of The Oldest Boy, Marin Theatre Company is pleased to partner with The Tibet Fund and The American Himalayan Foundation to raise awareness around Tibet’s movement toward autonomy and full human rights for Tibetans, as well as reincarnation in the Tibetan tradition. Half of the ticket revenue from the September 13 performance of the play will be donated to these two foundations; the performance will be followed by a panel discussion featuring the following panel, moderated by MTC Director of New Play Development Margot Melcon:

Sarah Ruhl (playwright, The Oldest Boy)
Sarah Ruhl's plays include In the Next Room, or the vibrator play (Pulitzer Prize finalist, Tony Award nominee for best new play), The Clean House (Pulitzer Prize Finalist, 2005; The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, 2004); Passion Play, a cycle (Pen American award, The Fourth Freedom Forum Playwriting Award from The Kennedy Center); Dead Man’s Cell Phone (Helen Hayes award); Melancholy Play; Eurydice; Orlando, Demeter in the City (NAACP nomination), Late: a cowboy song, Three Sisters, and most recently, Stage Kiss and Dear Elizabeth. Her plays have been produced on Broadway at the Lyceum by Lincoln Center Theater, off-Broadway at Playwrights’ Horizons, Second Stage, and at Lincoln Center’s Mitzi Newhouse Theater, and downtown at Clubbed Thumb and Classic Stage Company. Her plays have been produced regionally all over the country, with premieres at Yale Repertory Theater, the Goodman Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theater, Arena Stage, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Madison Repertory Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Cornerstone Theater, and the Piven Theatre Workshop in Chicago. Her plays have also been produced internationally in London, Germany, Australia, Canada and Israel, and have been translated into Polish, Russian, Spanish, Norwegian, Korean, German and Arabic. Originally from Chicago, Ms. Ruhl received her M.F.A. from Brown University where she studied with Paula Vogel. In 2003, she was the recipient of the Helen Merrill Emerging Playwrights Award and the Whiting Writers’ Award. She was a member of 13P and of New Dramatists and won the MacArthur Fellowship in 2006. She was recently the recipient of the PEN Center Award for a mid-career playwright, the Feminist Press’ Forty under Forty award, and the 2010 Lilly Award. She is currently on the faculty at Yale School of Drama and lives in Brooklyn with her family.

Jon Landaw, author and scholar
Jon Landaw, author of Buddhism for Dummies, was born in New Jersey in 1944. From 1972 to 1977 Jon worked as an English editor for the Translation Bureau of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India, producing numerous texts under the guidance of Geshe Dhargyey. As a student of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche since 1973, Jon has edited numerous works for Wisdom Publications, including Wisdom Energy and Introduction to Tantra. He is also the author of Prince Siddhartha, a biography of Buddha for children, and Images of Enlightenment, published by Snow Lion in 1993. As an instructor of Buddhist meditation, he has taught in numerous Dharma centers throughout the United States, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and elsewhere. He currently lives in Capitola, California with his family, and and teaches at various Buddhist centers in the vicinity.

Jann Ronis, Department of Buddhist Studies at UC Berkeley
Jann Ronis studied religion, Tibetan studies, Sinology, and the Tibetan and Chinese languages at the University of Virginia. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 2009 for a dissertation about developments in the monasteries of eastern Tibet, along the border between Tibet and China, in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. His dissertation focused on innovations in scholastics, liturgical practices, and administration spearheaded by the lamas of Katok Monastery and their widespread adoption in the region. The resulting network of monasteries represented the only significant alternative in Tibet to the model of monasticism prevalent in central Tibet and was the site of tremendous literary and artistic production. His research interests include the social histories of visionary cults, scholastic traditions, monastic reform movements, and sectarian conflicts; the philosophical and contemplative traditions of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism; and Sino-Tibetan cultural relations. During his year at Berkeley Jann is researching the twelfth and thirteenth century formation of an important ritual tradition in Tibetan Buddhism ­ the Kagye (bka' brgyad), or Eight Dispensations in an effort to better understand the domestication of Buddhism in Tibet. The Kagye is a compendium of eight heterogeneous deity cults including deities of Indic and Tibetan origins, and supramundane and mundane statuses ­ and Jann is exploring the innovations in narrative and ritual made by the Tibetan creators of this uniquely Tibetan pantheon.

Jessica Thebus (director, The Oldest Boy)
Jessica Thebus is an an Associate Professor of Theater at Northwestern University and directs the MFA Directing program. Last season she directed Buzzer by Tracey Scott Wilson at Goodman Theater where she has previously directed Sarah Ruhl’s Stage Kiss (world premiere) and also Rhul’s The Clean House. At Steppenwolf Theatre Company she has directed Sex with Strangers, Intimate Apparel, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, No Place Like Home, When the Messenger is Hot (also at 59 E. 59th in NYC) and Sonia Flew. Additional credits: Collected Stories (American Blues Theater—Jeff nomination), Welcome Home Jenny Sutter (Next Theatre); As You Like It (Oregon Shakespeare Festival); The Feast: an intimate Tempest (Chicago Shakespeare Theater with Redmoon Theater—Jeff nomination); Orlando (Court Theatre); Harriet Jacobs (Kansas City Rep); A Civil War Christmas (Huntington Theatre Company); Our Town–with Anna D. Shapiro, They All Fall Down, In The Garden (Lookingglass); Jekyll and Hyde, Inherit the Wind, Red Herring (Northlight Theatre); Eurydice (Victory Gardens); The Turn of the Screw (Writers’ Theater); and the world premiere of Welcome Home Jenny Sutter (The Oregon Shakespeare Festival and the Kennedy Center). Favorite projects: Pulp at About Face Theatre (Jefferson Award nomination—Best Director, After Dark Award—Best Production); Winesburg, Ohio also at About Face (Jeff nomination—Best Director, After Dark Award—Best Director); Ms. Thebus has also toured internationally with the Bread and Puppet Theater.

Tsering Dorjee (Bawa) (choreographer and title character, The Oldest Boy)
Tsering Dorjee (Bawa) was born in Toe Bawa (Ngari region), Tibet. He received his Masters in Tibetan Performing Arts from the famed Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) in Dharamsala, India. To complement traditional performing arts, he attended acting training in France, Netherlands, India and recently graduated from the Barbizon International Modeling and Acting School in San Francisco. Tsering has performed in several films such as the 1999 Oscar nominated Himalaya, and collaborated with numerous artists, including composer Michael Becker with whom he created the original soundtrack for the 2009 Emmy Award winning documentary The Women of Tibet - A Quiet Revolution. He recently advised the Off-Broadway premiere of The Oldest Boy at Lincoln Center Theater. He currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and teaches Tibetan songs, dances, Music, and Opera to the community through workshops and weekend classes, thereby helping preserve the unique cultural heritage of his land.

Our partners

The American Himalayan Foundation The Tibet Fund