Rajiv Joseph play receives Ohio premiere at Karamu

Karamu House has joined forces with Cleveland Heights' Ensemble Theatre to present the Ohio premiere of “The Lake Effect, a socially relevant comedy written by Rajiv Joseph, a 2010 Pulitzer Prize-finalist and Cleveland Heights native.

Performances run through Nov. 26 at Karamu’s newly refurbished concert hall, located at 2355 East 89th Street, Cleveland.

Celeste Cosentino, Ensemble Theatre’s artistic director, directs “The Lake Effect,” which features Natalie El Dabh, LaShawn Little and Ammen T. Suleiman.

The play, a comedy, is set during a fierce Cleveland mid-winter storm, as estranged siblings are reunited by their father’s sudden death. “The Lake Effect” is a complex platter of sibling rivalry, unlikely friendships, and brash perceptions of race, gender and success.

The Los Angeles Times has called Joseph “daring, magnificent, and virtuosic.” He is the book-writer and co-lyricist for the upcoming musical ”Fly,” adapted from Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie. He co-wrote the screenplay for the film “Draft Day,” and wrote the Pulitzer Prize-nominated “Bengal Tiger at the Bagdad Zoo.” Joseph has been awarded a United States Artists Grant, the Whiting Award, the Glickman Award, and the National Endowment for the Arts Outstanding New American Play grant. He served in the Peace Corps for three years, in Senegal, West Africa, and is currently a writer on the Showtime series “Nurse Jackie.”

Tickets for “The Lake Effect” range from in price $15 to $37, and can be purchased by phone (216-795-7077), or online at www.karamuhouse.org.

Aseelah Shareef

Aseelah Shareef is director of programs at Karamu House, a member of the FutureHeights Neighborhood Mini-Grants Committee, and a lover of Stone Oven's tabouli, Zagara's arugula and Lopez on Lee's butter-poached lobster tacos.

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Volume 10, Issue 12, Posted 10:01 AM, 11.21.2017