August 2018
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                   
Contact: Craig Shafer
805-928-7731, 4100
News Release
Special Engagement
An Iliad & Muthaland
In rotating repertory

Two astonishing one-woman shows An Iliad and Muthalandcome to PCPA this fall playing in the intimate Severson Theatre in rotating repertory from October 4th  through the 21st.

An Iliad is a modern rendering of Homer’s classic story, adapted for the stage by Lisa Peterson and Dennis O’Hare. In a virtuoso performance, Tarah Flangan inhabits over fifty characters with language that ranges from contemporary realism to epic poetry. The production includes live music by Eva Scholz-Carlson on the cello.

Through poetry and humor, the ancient tale of the Trojan War and the modern world collide in this captivating theatrical experience. The setting is simple: the empty theatre. The time is now: the present moment. The lone figure onstage is a storyteller—possibly Homer, possibly one of the many bards who followed in his footsteps. “Every time I sing this song, I hope it’s the last time,” begins the poet who pleads with us to comprehend our past, contemplate our future. He is fated to tell this story throughout history, a story that deals with humankind’s perpetual capacity for violence.

An Iliad telescopes “the mighty expanses of Homer’s great poem into an evening that scales the conflict of the Trojan War down to an intimate solo show illuminating both the heroism and the horror of warfare.” – NY Times

However, this is not merely Homer’s poem condensed, but a contemporary interpretation that reduces the scale of the Greek Gods down to mortal size and takes huge ideas down to a concept we can relate to in our daily frustrations. Peterson and O’Hare take your irritated 20 minute wait in a slow moving supermarket check-out line and equate it to the relentless and never-ending Trojan War because to abandon either midstream admits to your fruitless waste of time.

Tarah Flanagan is co-director and plays The Poet and is accompanied by Cellest Eva Scholz-Carlson, A Muse. Ms. Flanagan is an Artistic Associate of the Great River Shakespeare Festival with New York Theatre credits at The Mint Theatre, Looking Glass Theatre, Pearl Theatre and regionally, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Arkansas Repertory Theatre and Cincinnati Playhouse. She is a graduate of the PCPA two-year acting conservatory, with a BFA from Webster University, and MFA from Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Eva Scholz-Carlson has been playing cello from the age of four and has played with the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies and in her school’s pit orchestra. Acting credits include Antigone, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet and The Tempest.

An Iliad is generously sponsored by Judge & Mrs. Jed Q. Beebe.


Muthaland, written and performed by Minita Gandhi, takes us on an epic coming of age journey. The life of a young woman is forever changed on a trip to India where she unearths family secrets, encounters a prophet, and ultimately discovers her voice within a culture of silence. The familiar and the foreign swap roles in this dark comedy about culture, identity, spirituality, and sexuality.

In 2014, while foraging through her parents’ basement, she discovered her father’s worn suitcase from his very first journey to the United States, with a single statement scribbled in black Sharpie on the back of the bag: “When I die, discard this bag if you like, until then it stays.” This sparked a curiosity about her parents’ life journey and led to vulnerable interviews where they shared stories from their history they had never spoken of before. The telling of these stories began to bridge the cultural and generational distance between her and her family. Gandhi then realized by weaving their stories with her own life-changing journey to India in 2009 for her brother's arranged marriage, she had a powerful story she had to share with the world. Muthaland shares the magic of her journey to India, full of prophets, ritual, and the convergence of American and Indian cultures.

Muthaland had its world premiere at 16th Street Theatre in 2017.

Minita Gandhi is an actress/playwright/writer/dramaturg/director who was born in Mumbai, India. Raised in the Bay Area, Minita cultivated an artistic home for herself in Chicago for over a decade before moving to Los Angeles, where she currently resides.

Some of her regional theatre credits include Looking Glass Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Arena Stage and Milwaukee Repertory Theatre. Minita can be seen in the recurring role of Dr. Prospere on NBC's Chicago Fire, as Musarrat in Brown Girls, and has appeared on Fox's hit show Empire, NBC's Crisis, ABC's Betrayal, Fox's The Chicago Code, and was The Onion News Network's anchor, Nina Shankar.

She is a graduate of PCPA’s two-year actor conservatory and served as dramaturg for PCPA’s production of Much Ado About Nothing directed by Patricia Troxel. Directing credits include The Sitayana written by Lavina Jadwhani. She is a Master Instructor for Pinnacle Performance Company, where she spent 2016 developing a Women's Leadership Program, and is currently the co-director of the Professional Mentorship Program for Women in the Arts with the Statera Foundation. 

Visit An Iliad website
This drama is best enjoyed by children 14 and older due to some mature themes.

Visit Muthaland website
This one woman play is most appropriate for children 14 years and older due to some adult language and mature themes.


Just the Facts
What                     An Iliad  and  Muthaland
When                    October 4 - 21 , 2018 – Rotating Repertory
Venue                  Severson Theatre, Santa Maria
GPS – 870 S. Bradley Rd.
Tickets                  $30.00 - $46.50
With discounts for Senior, Student, Child, Military,
and preview performances October 4 & 5
Pricing based on day, time, and may increase upon demand.
Box Office           (805) 922-8313

*Member, Actors' Equity Association

For 54 years, PCPA, a professional conservatory theatre, has infused the national theatre scene with thousands of trained actors and theatrical technicians.