Program Notes: Selected Shorts
Hosted by Jane Kaczmarek
Sunday, December 5, 2021
Bing Concert Hall
Hosted by Jane Kaczmarek
"The Appropriation of Cultures" by Percival Everett
Performed by Jason Dirden
"Paradise" by Maya Yxta Murray
Performed by Kimberly Guerrero
"Negative Equity" by Lionel Shriver
Performed by Jane Kaczmarek
Runtime approximately 90 minutes with no intermission
Stanford Live Season Sponsor:
Please be considerate of others and turn off all phones, pagers, and watch alarms. Photography and recording of any kind are not permitted. Thank you.
HEALTH AND SAFETY: All patrons are required to wear a mask at this performance.
About the Artists
Jason Dirden has appeared on Broadway in two Tony Award-winning productions, A Raisin in the Sun and Fences, opposite Denzel Washington and Viola Davis. In 2017, he starred in the West Coast revival of August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, directed by Phylicia Rashad, for which he was honored with an Ovation Award. He starred as Pastor Basie Skanks in OWN’s original drama series Greenleaf and created the character of Gerald Aims in BET’s drama American Soul, the story of Don Cornelius and Soul Train. Additional works include Lifetime’s Mahalia, opposite Danielle Brooks, and the CBS procedural crime dramas Elementary and Hawaii Five-0.
Percival Everett is the author of 20 books, including Wounded, which won the 2006 PEN USA Literary Award; Erasure, winner of the Academy Award for Literature of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award; Big Picture, winner of the PEN/Oakland-Josephine Miles Award for Excellence in Literature; Zulus, winner of the New American Writing Award; and the story collection Damned if I Do. His latest books are the novel I Am Not Sidney Poitier, winner of the 2010 Believer Book Award, and the collection of poetry Swimming Swimmers Swimming. He is a Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Southern California.
Kimberly Guerrero is a contemporary Native American storyteller who works in film, television, and theater. Her recent acting credits include Cherokee Chief Wilma in Julie Taymor’s Gloria Steinem biopic The Glorias; Catch the Fair One, winner of the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival Audience Award; and The Dark Divide starring David Cross and Debra Messing. Guerrero can currently be seen in the Taika Waititi/Sterlin Harjo hit comedy Reservation Dogs on FX and Hulu, Rutherford Falls on Peacock, and The Wilds. On stage, she originated the role of “Johnna” in Tracy Letts’ Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning play August: Osage County, and also starred in Manahatta at The Public Theater in New York and The Frybread Queen with Native Voices in Los Angeles. She was recently named Artistic Director at UC Riverside, where she is an Associate Professor in the Theater, Film, and Digital Filmmaking Department. Guerrero is an enrolled member of the Colville Tribes and also has Salish-Kootenai heritage.
Jane Kaczmarek is best known for her role as Lois on Malcolm in the Middle, for which she received seven consecutive Emmy nominations as well as nominations for the Golden Globe and SAG Awards. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin and Yale School of Drama, Kaczmarek made her television debut on The Paper Chase and Hill Street Blues and most recently can be seen on The Big Bang Theory, This Is Us, and Mixed-ish. In New York, Kaczmarek has appeared on Broadway and off at the Manhattan Theatre Club, Second Stage, the Public Theatre, New York Theater Workshop, and six seasons at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Her recent theater credits include in Long Day's Journey Into Night with Alfred Molina, Our Town with Deaf West Theatre, and The Year to Come at La Jolla Playhouse. Kaczmarek’s favorite job is raising her three kids and reading/hosting Selected Shorts across America.
Yxta Maya Murray is a writer and law professor living in Los Angeles. Her novels include The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Kidnapped, The King’s Gold: An Old World Novel of Adventure, and The Queen Jade: A Novel, and others. She has won a Whiting Award and an Art Writers Grant, and she has been a finalist for the ASME Award in Fiction. Her art criticism can be found in Artforum, ARTnews, Artillery, and other periodicals.
Lionel Shriver’s novels include the National Book Award finalist So Much for That, the New York Times bestseller The Post-Birthday World, and the international bestseller and Orange Prize-winning We Need to Talk About Kevin. Her journalism has appeared in The Guardian, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications. Her most recent novel, Big Brother, was critically acclaimed and a Waterstones Book Club choice in 2014.
“The Appropriation of Cultures” by Percival Everett, from Callaloo (Winter, 1996). Copyright © 1996 by Percival Everett. Used by permission of Graywolf Press.
“Paradise” by Yxta Maya Murray. First published in The Southern Review, vol. 56, no. 3. Copyright © 2020 by Yxta Maya Murray. From The World Doesn’t Work That Way, But It Could, University of Nevada Press, 2020. Used by permission of the author.
"Negative Equity" by Lionel Shriver, from Property: Stories Between Two Novellas (Harper Collins, 2018). Copyright © 2018 by Lionel Shriver. Used by permission of Harper Collins.
Selected Shorts is supported by the Dungannon Foundation, creator of The Rea Award for the Short Story. Support is also provided by the Howard Gilman Foundation, the NYC COVID-19 Response and Impact Fund in The New York Community Trust, The Shubert Foundation, the Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Fund, the Charina Endowment Fund, The Achelis and Bodman Foundation, the Henry Nias Foundation, the Consolidated Edison Company of New York, the Vidda Foundation, the Axe-Houghton Foundation, the Lemberg Foundation, and The Grodzins Fund. Selected Shorts is also made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, and with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Symphony Space thanks our generous supporters, including our Board of Directors, Producers Circle, and members, who make our programs possible with their annual support.
Symphony Space Staff:
Executive Director: Kathy Landau
Founding Artistic Director: Isaiah Sheffer*
Managing Director: Peggy Wreen
Director of Literary Programs: Jennifer Brennan
Lead Producer of Literary Programs: Drew Richardson
Producer of Literary Programs: Vivienne Woodward
Consultant for Literary Programs: Matthew Love
Exclusive management for Selected Shorts:
Alliance Artist Management 5030 Broadway, Suite 812, New York NY 10034