One of the most beloved television families of the 1980s is set to make a long awaited return in the world premiere of Family Ties, written by Daniel Goldstein (The Song of Songs, Unknown Soldier and Row), based on the classic television series, directed by The Human Race’s President & Artistic Director Kevin Moore and produced by special arrangement by Araca Media & Entertainment.
Twenty years have passed and Alex P. Keaton, now running for Congress, returns to his parents’ Columbus home with his sisters, Mallory and Jennifer, who are parents of their own. Gathered together once again, they relive some of the most important moments from their childhood – the growing pains, heartbreaks and reconciliations – with fondness and appreciation for simpler times that defined a generation. The preview performance of Family Ties is Thursday, June 1. Opening night is Friday, June 2, and the production runs through June 25 at The Human Race’s home at downtown Dayton’s Loft Theatre.
Responsible for shepherding Goldstein’s play through development, New York City-based Araca Media & Entertainment believed the stage version of Family Ties—a series about a family living in central Ohio—should make its debut in the Buckeye State when it brought the property to The Human Race’s Kevin Moore in 2016. “To be hand selected as the theatre to bring this show to life is a huge honor, and speaks to our national reputation,” beams Moore, who has directed and produced dozens of new plays and musicals over the past thirty years. “Developing new works has become a vital part of our mission,” explains Moore, “and working with playwright Danny Goldstein has been a joy and privilege. Theatre is never more exciting than when you are creating something for the first time.”
Unlike most new works, Family Ties has the added benefit of nostalgia for Moore, and likely much of the country. “Being a TV show that I watched faithfully, I am thrilled to be able to continue the Keatons’ story,” he says, “and to find out how life played out for these characters who I, and America, loved for seven seasons.” While preparing for rehearsals on the play, which revisits many poignant moments in the characters’ lives twenty years earlier, Moore spent time watching and reviewing episodes from the television series. “The research—if I may call binge watching ‘research’—was refreshing.” He explains, “I was reminded how many tough and timeless issues are tackled in Family Ties, and how smart the writing of the TV show is. Yes, it is a comedy, but good comedy comes from good drama. And that’s what we’re really all about at The Human Race.”
CAST AND DESIGN TEAM
The six-member cast features Jim Stanek (Fun Home, Lestat, The Rivals on Broadway) as “Alex,” Eve Plumb (TV’s The Brady Bunch, Dawn: Portrait of a Teenage Runaway and Fudge, Unbroken Circle Off-Broadway) as “Elyse” and Lawrence Redmond (Intelligence at Arena Stage, A Prayer for Owen Meany at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Elmer Gantry at Signature Theatre) as “Steven.” Thea Brooks (Dirty Dancing 1st national tour, I Love Lucy, Live on Stage national tour) plays “Mallory,” Sara Mackie (Hands on a Hardbody and Other Desert Cities at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, Green Gables for HRTC) is the youngest daughter, “Jennifer.” Maggie Lou Rader (Heavier Than… at Know Theatre Cincinnati, Emma and Little Women at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company) rounds out the ensemble as Alex’s love interest, “Ellen.”
The creative team includes Tamara L. Honesty (Other Desert Cities, Becky’s New Car and Lombardi at HRTC), scenic design; Janet G. Powell (Sweeney Todd, The Full Monty and the world premiere of Family Shots at HRTC), costume design; Human Race Resident Artist John Rensel (The Glass Menagerie, Crowns and Next to Normal for HRTC), lighting design; Human Race Resident Artist Jay Brunner (the world premiere of 26 Pebbles, The Glass Menagerie and Hail Mary! at HRTC) sound design; and Lexi Muller, production stage manager.
Family Ties reunites audiences with one of the most beloved television families of the 1980s. Twenty years have passed and Alex P. Keaton, now running for Congress, returns to his parents’ Columbus home with his sisters, Mallory and Jennifer, who are parents of their own. Gathered together once again, they relive some of the most important moments from their childhood—the growing pains, heartbreaks and reconciliations—with fondness and appreciation for simpler times that defined a generation.
Performance and special event information
Tickets for the preview performance of Family Ties on June 1 start at $35 for adults, $32 for seniors and $17.50 for students. For all performances June 2 – 25, single ticket prices start at $40 for adults, $37 for seniors and $20 for students. Prices vary depending on the day of the week and seating location. Group discounts are available for parties of 10 or more. The Human Race is offering a pair of discount ticket opportunities during the run of the show. A limited number of $12 and $25 side-area seats are available in advance for all performances. The Sunday, June 4 7:00 p.m. performance is “Sawbuck Sunday,” when any available seat can be purchased in person for just $10 at the Loft Theatre box office two hours prior to the show. Discounts are subject to availability and some restrictions apply.
All performances are at The Human Race’s home in the Metropolitan Art Center’s Loft Theatre, located at 126 North Main Street in downtown Dayton, Ohio. Show times for Family Ties are 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. Performances on Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings begin at 7:00 p.m., and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday matinees.
Tickets and performance information for Family Ties are available at www.humanracetheatre.org or by calling Ticket Center Stage at (937) 228-3630, and at the Schuster Center box office.