Young Jean Lee

2017 for Second Thought Theatre

Next season, Second Thought has the area premieres of Grounded and Straight White Men, and the world premiere of Blake Hackler's The Necessities.

published Thursday, September 15, 2016

Photo: Julieta Cervantes
The Public Theater's production of Straight White Men


Dallas — The 2017 season for Second Thought Theatre has been announced, and it includes area premieres by George Brandt and Young Jean Lee, plus a world premiere by Southern Methodist University faculty member, and local director and actor, Blake Hackler. The season begins in January with the one-actor show Grounded, about a woman fighter pilot, starring Jenny Ledel and directed by Alex Organ. Anne Hathaway starred in the Public Theater production in 2015. That's followed by Young Jean Lee's Straight White Men, directed by Christie Vela (and good for STT for using a woman director here, as the script suggests). Hackler's The Necessities, directed by Joel Ferrell, closes the season.


Here is the complete news release, with show descriptions, dates and ticket information:

Second Thought Theatre Artistic Director Alex Organ announced today complete details for the company’s 2017 season. The season, comprised of two area premieres and one world premiere, includes a female fighter pilot deplaned by an unexpected pregnancy, three brothers navigating the waters of white privilege, and four strangers searching for intimacy in a small east Texas town. Season subscription and ticket information for STT’s 2017 season is available online at

Photo: Courtesy
Young Jean Lee

“We want to explore the idea of change in our 2017 season, and more specifically, how we respond to the changing world around us,” said Organ. “The shows we’ve selected tackle some particularly topical subject matters that don’t allow for easy answers. Our hope is that our audiences will find themselves inspired to continue the conversation well past the post-show talkbacks.”

The 2017 season begins with George Brandt’s Grounded, a one-woman play featuring STT alum Jenny Ledel. Audiences will remember Ledel most recently from her role as a concerned mother in A Kid Like Jake, which closed the 2016 season. While her character in A Kid Like Jake struggled with deciding what was best for her Cinderella-adoring son, Grounded will challenge Ledel to explore the clash between a career in the typically masculine world of modern warfare and the more traditional role of wife and mother. STT Artistic Director Alex Organ will direct.

Following Grounded is Straight White Men, Young Jean Lee’s dynamic play about three middle-aged brothers and their widowed father, who are as white and liberal as they come. Lee’s play takes a different turn from the long tradition of plays about a white man in the middle of an existential crisis, exploring instead what happens when a white man, in response to his own privilege, chooses to live a diminished life, alienating his family in the process. Fresh off her performance in 2016's A Kid Like Jake, Christie Vela returns to STT to direct this unnerving examination of what it means to be straight, white and male in the 21st century.

Closing the season is the world premiere of The Necessities, a new play by local playwright/actor/director and SMU professor Blake Hackler. Hackler previously directed STT’s production of Martyr to open the 2016 season and performed in 2014’s Cock. DTC Associate Artistic Director Joel Ferrell will direct this new play where the worlds of a disgruntled Walmart employee, a former minister, a Reiki therapist, and a boy obsessed with Battlestar Galactica collide in east Texas. As four very different people search desperately for intimacy and connection, each will have to decide how much they are willing to give to get what they need.

Second Thought Theatre’s 2017 season will be presented as follows: Grounded (Jan. 11 – Feb. 4); Straight White Men (April 12 – May 6); and The Necessities (July 5 – July 29). All performances will take place at Bryant Hall next door to the Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd.

To learn more about STT’s 2017 season or how to purchase season subscriptions or single tickets, please visit Season subscriptions can also be purchased by phone at 1-866-811-4111.




by George Brandt

Jan. 11 – Feb. 4, 2017

Directed by Alex Organ

Featuring STT Alum Jenny Ledel

Area Premiere

When a fighter pilot at the top of her game is grounded due to an unexpected pregnancy, she is reassigned to operate military drones from a windowless trailer outside Las Vegas. By day, she hunts and kills terrorists. By night, she returns home to domestic life with her husband and daughter. Questions of empathy and moral responsibility in the face of impossibly difficult choices live at the heart of this moving portrait of a young woman confronted with the harsh realities of modern warfare.

Pay-What-You-Can Previews – Wednesday 1/11 and Thursday 1/12

PRESS OPENING – Friday 1/13

Regular Performances – Saturday 1/14, 1/21, 1/28; Thursday 1/19, 1/26, 2/2; Friday 1/20, 1/27, 2/3 Additional Pay-What-You-Can Performances – Monday 1/16, 1/23, 1/30

Closing Performance – Saturday 2/4



Straight White Men

by Young Jean Lee

April 12 – May 6,  2017

Directed by Christie Vela

Area Premiere

Photo: SMU
Blake Hackler

It’s Christmas time and Ed has a lot to be proud of. He has a home, a healthy savings account and three extremely capable adult sons. Jake’s a hotshot banker. Drew’s an award-winning writer. And his oldest son Matt’s as bright as his future might be – if he wasn't a temp worker still living at home with his dad, that is. Identity and privilege collide in this biting, funny and surprisingly compassionate exploration of what it means to be straight, white and male in 21st century America.

Pay-What-You-Can Previews – Wednesday 4/12; Thursday 4/13

PRESS OPENING – Friday 4/14

Regular Performances – Saturday 4/15, 4/22, 4/29; Thursday 4/20, 4/27, 5/4; Friday 4/21, 4/28, 5/5 Additional Pay-What-You-Can Performances – Monday 4/17, 4/24, 5/1

Closing Performance – Saturday 5/6


The Necessities

By Blake Hackler

July 5 – July 29, 2016

Directed by Joel Ferrell

World Premiere

Peter's a former minister yearning to escape his past. Debbie's a disgruntled Walmart employee hoping to do the same. Carly's an eccentric Reiki therapist looking for love, and her estranged son Ward has a penchant for Battlestar Galactica. Set against the backdrop of small town east Texas, the lives of these strangers intersect as they desperately search for intimacy and connection. But the center can’t hold, at least not in a town like this, and each of them will have to decide how much they are willing to give to get what they need.

Pay-What-You-Can Previews – Wednesday 7/5 and Thursday 7/6

PRESS OPENING – Friday 7/7

Regular Performances – Saturday 7/8, 7/15, 7/22; Thursday 7/13, 7/20, 7/27; Friday 7/14, 7/21, 7/28 Additional Pay-What-You-Can Performances – Monday 7/10, 7/17, 7/24

Closing Performance – Saturday 7/29 Thanks For Reading

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2017 for Second Thought Theatre
Next season, Second Thought has the area premieres of Grounded and Straight White Men, and the world premiere of Blake Hackler's The Necessities.
by Mark Lowry

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