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The Life of Leo Wool by Nina AlvarezThe Life of Leo Wool by Nina Alvarez
Directed by P. Gibson Ralph

Presented in May 2013

All performances at the East End Theatre
727 East Main Street, Rochester, NY

The Life of Leo Wool is scheduled to premiere on May, 10, 2013 and will feature Jack Simel, Diane Chevron, Jessica Drew-Cates, Jason Alexander Holmes, and Nancy Berg.

Literature is dying, and so is Leo Wool, the last American superstar literary critic. When he is visited in his study by the ghost of his dead wife portending the visit of three writers with bones to pick, Leo must confront the real life he has led and what he may have sacrificed in search of the sublime.


Nina AlvarezRochester’s most exciting emerging playwright, Nina Alvarez (shown left), is a published poet and short fiction writer, and writing workshop instructor at Writers & Books, the venue for last year’s Fringe Festival staged reading of The Life of Leo Wool.

A native Rochesterian, Nina credits the warm and literary-minded community in Rochester for igniting her passion for writing plays. "I think Rochester is an exciting place to write," Alvarez says, “The city has a rich literary history with outstanding literary and theater communities.”

Alvarez is excited that the GRRC is producing the world premiere of her show. "GRRC is one of the finest production companies in Rochester. They have brought in an incredible director and a top-notch cast. When this opportunity arose I couldn't have been more thrilled. I hope it's the beginning of a great partnership between me and GRRC."

Jack SimelAlvarez wrote the play with local veteran actor, Jack Simel (shown right)l, in mind to play the titular role. Simel, who recently delighted audiences as Mushnik, the florist, in RAPA’s Little Shop of Horrors, introduced Alvarez to Sandi Henschel, who directed the staged reading of The Life of Leo Wool for the 2012 Fringe Festival. The play was well-received, playing to nearly packed houses for both nights of the show.

“Leo Wool addresses the timeless truths of the written word's relationship to the human condition, made genuinely interesting and broadly accessible by Ms. Alvarez." Jeremy Sniatecki, Illustrator and Graphic Designer

“There is a little bit of Leo Wool in all of us. We all feel like Leo sometimes, that need to decipher high brow from low brow, good from bad. Though Leo’s behavior is sometimes reprehensible, we all have the capacity to behave in such a way. That’s why he’s relatable.” Raquel Pidal, Editor