Five Jewish nine-year-olds LARP Christianity! Watch as they: role-play heterosexual marriage, don flame-throwing mech suits, stab each other to facilitate animal reincarnation and try to cross themselves. I’ll be in my Hanukkah Palace is a feverish excursion back into the weirdo dreamscape of queer Jewish childhood.
Written by Alexa Derman
Directed by Molly Houlahan
Photos by Tani Jackson
ALEXA DERMAN (she/hers): Alexa Derman is a playwright from Jersey. Her plays include PSYCHOPSYCHOTIC (Relentless Award Honorable Mention), GIRLISH (Fresh Ink Theatre), and RESTORATION MASTER RESET (Cutting Ball in WAYS TO LEAVE A BODY). She’s been a finalist for Playwrights Realm’s Writing Fellowship, the Starr Reading Series, Pegasus PlayLab, Kitchen Dog New Works, and Unicorn Plays-in-Progress; semifinalist for Bay Area Playwrights Festival and the O’Neill. Other honors and experiences include nomination for the Cherry Lane Mentor Project, a residency with StageFemmes at Kenyon College, selection as a 2019 Lambda Literary Fellow, and at Yale the Marina Keegan Award for Excellence in Playwriting. Her work has been developed with Cutting Ball Variety Pack and Fresh Ink. BA from Yale in Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies. Alexa is currently pursuing her MFA at Brown, where she is a member of the Brown-RISD Game Developers and recipient of the Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship. alexaderman.com
MOLLY HOULAHAN (she/hers): Select directing credits include Collective Rage (Brown/Trinity, Winter’s Tale (Brown/Trinity), The Skriker (Brown/Trinity), Transhumance (Austin,TX Fringe, Auckland Fringe, Adelaide Fringe, Edinburgh Fringe), In Search of Maria Theresa (Cell Theatre), Gospel of the Marys (Furnace Festival), R+J (Access Theatre), How To Succeed as an Ethnically Ambiguous Actor starring Zenobia Shroff from “The Big Sick” (Castillo Theatre), Scorched (The Araca Project), and Still Life (NYC International Fringe Festival). Assistant/Associate credits include Kate Whoriskey, Anne Kauffman, Rebecca Taichman, Les Waters, Dan Sullivan, Tony Taccone, Lynne Meadow, and Mary Zimmerman among others at institutions such as The Public, Playwrights Horizons, Encores!, Berkeley Rep, OSFl, Arena Stage, MTC, and the New York Philharmonic. 2019 Manhattan Theatre Club Directing Fellow, 2017 Playwrights Horizons Directing Fellow, 2015-2016 Bret C. Harte Directing Fellow at Berkeley Rep, and the winner of the Louis Sudler Prize upon graduating Yale University. Current M.F.A. candidate at Brown/Trinity Rep.
MYKA CUE (she/her) is a Filipino-Chinese actor, producer, writer and fierce collaborator. As a child, she loved making her dolls suffer through Kumon like she did. She is currently pursuing her MFA in Acting at Brown/Trinity Rep and is grateful for the opportunity to be back in NYC making theatre with this incredible group of artists! mykacue.com
CLAIRE KOENIG (she/her) is an actor, educator, and playwright entering the final year of her MFA at Brown / Trinity Rep. As a child she played a game called “Attacking Sushi” in which her friends played a waiter and an innocent customer, and she played the Attacking Sushi? Who attacked them? Yeah, she doesn’t get it either. Keep up with her work on Instagram: @alasporci.
FIONA MAGUIRE Weirdest game I played as a kid was NAKED NUNS… it takes more than 50 words to explain, ask me! Recent credits: Betty 2 in Collective Rage, Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing, and Electra in Electra. Education: MFA Acting, Brown/Trinity; BA Human Biology and Theater Performance, Stanford. IG:@fionamarie16
JENNY NGUYEN NELSON (she/her) is a fourth year MFA Brown/Trinity acting student. Nelson’s favorite childhood game is Gourd-Crab-Shrimp-Fish, a betting game her family played every Vietnamese New Year. She first learned at 4 and coincidentally, simultaneously, discovered her love of gambling. She loves husband Ian and dog Marty in no particular order. JennyNguyenNelson.com IG @bratwurst_banhmi