After Two Years of Development, New PlayKnocking Bird Leaves the Nest

Contact: Sara Keats, Communications Director
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After Two Years of Development, New Play Knocking Bird Leaves the Nest
Seattle playwright Emily Conbere’s thrilling psychodrama premieres this month after readings and workshops all over town

September 1, 2015 – Seattle, WA – Seattle playwright Emily Conbere’s Knocking Bird will premiere at West of Lenin on September 11, 2015, following developmental readings and workshops with LiveGirls! Theatre, Sandbox Collective, Seattle Repertory Theatre, and the Northwest Playwrights Alliance.

Knocking Bird is the first co-production of the recently-launched Umbrella Project. Knocking Birdis produced in association with West of Lenin and Splinter Group. Paul Budraitis (The Salesman is Dead and Gone, Bo-Nita) directs; Sam Hagen (The Flick, The Lower Depths), Angela DiMarco (Boeing, Boeing, The Foreigner), and Alex Matthews (reWilding, Is She Dead Yet?) star.

Knocking Bird is a psychological thriller about a husband and wife who retreat to the woods after a car accident leaves her body and his mind wrecked. Between long walks to the 7-11 and a mounting, lingering obsession with birds, the couple grapples with a visit from the man who shaped their past and threatens their future. Conbere describes the play as a look at “the strange and uncomfortable ways that couples transform and adapt to each other in order to stay together.” 
“Umbrella Project was born out of a need to create a better way to support the work of our local playwrights,” says Executive Director Norah Elges, “We chose Knocking Bird for our first production because it is a perfect example of the barriers to the production of new work in Seattle. Knocking Bird had a reading at the Seattle Repertory Theatre in June 2013 when Conbere was in the Writers Group there, and the play was developed as a one-act by Sandbox Collective after an initial commission from Live Girls! Theatre. Conbere has been writing plays in Seattle for almost five years and has yet to have a full production of her work, despite being a respected playwright in the Seattle theatre community. We are excited to be able to change that.” 

Playwright – Emily Conbere
Director – Paul Budraitis
Producer and Dramaturg – Norah 
Production Stage Manager – Ashley Rolph
Designers – Robert Henson, Leo Mayberry, Hannah Schnabel, Tom Wiseley, and Ahren Buhmann
Cast – Angela DiMarco, Sam Hagen, and Alex Matthews

Tickets are $25 General, $15 TPS/Senior/Student. Tickets at

September 10, 2015  – 8:00 p.m. (Preview)
September 11, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
September 12, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.

September 17, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
September 18, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
September 19, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.

September 21, 2015 – 8:00 p.m. (Industry Night)

September 24, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
September 25, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
September 26, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.

October 1, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
October 2, 2015  – 8:00 p.m.
October 3, 2015 – 8:00 p.m.

Preview on September 10 and Industry Night on September 21 will be Pay-What-You-Can. There will be a talkback with select members of the cast and creative team following the performances on September 17, September 24, and October 1. 

About Umbrella Project
Producer, director, dramaturg, and actor Norah Elges, Gavin Reub (Co-Artistic Director of The Seagull Project, Casting Associate for Book-It Repertory) and Erin Bednarz (Artist Liaison and Outreach Coordinator for Live Girls Theater!), founded Umbrella Project in Seattle, WA in 2015. Umbrella Project invests in playwrights and the viability of new work through advocacy, collaboration, and development.

Learn more about Umbrella Project at  

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