City Theatre closes 2017-18 season with NOMAD MOTEL By Carla Ching

April 27th, 2018 / Posted in Home Page Latest News, News & Press, Nomad Motel, Press Releases

City Theatre closes 2017-18 season with
By Carla Ching
May 12 – June 3, 2018

A National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere

Pittsburgh, PA (April 26, 2018). City Theatre is thrilled to announce the details of the final production of the 2017-18 season: Nomad Motel by Carla Ching. Originally commissioned as part of South Coast Repertory Theatre’s CrossRoads initiative (Marc Masterson, Artistic Director) the play explores a family consumed by California’s crippling housing crisis and the life of a “parachute kid,” sent to live alone in America while his father remains in Hong Kong. It is directed by LA-based artist Bart DeLorenzo, and will run on the City Theatre Main Stage, May 12-June 3, 2018. Tickets are on sale now.

Nomad Motel – a 2017 Kilroys List play – is the first work by playwright Carla Ching to be produced in Pittsburgh. It also marks a new play development milestone for City Theatre: Nomad Motel is produced at City Theatre as part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere; other partnering theaters include Horizon Theater in Atlanta, Georgia, and Unicorn Theatre in Kansas City, Missouri. Learn more about the Rolling World Premiere program at

“Carla and I have been involved with this project – with many of these artists – for 3 or 4 years now. It grew out of this special initiative to explore real stories from people who live in Orange County – people whose stories typically aren’t told. And among all those projects, Carla found a unique way to examine home and family in this very strange time that we’re living in,” said director Bart DeLorenzo to the staff and production team at first rehearsal. “I think there is a lot that is transforming in this country, and this play really examines the way that families are changing and transforming. I like to think of what Alix says in the play when she’s asked ‘Well, what are we going to do?’ She says, ‘You flail. And then you figure it out.’”

City Theatre is continuing its season-long City Connects partnership with Allies for Health + Wellbeing. Patrons may drop off donations of Port Authority Connect Cards and non-perishable items for Allies’ food pantries. Allies for Health + Wellbeing envisions a healthier community whereby all individuals can access integrated medical care and supportive human services in a respectful setting, free of stigma and discrimination. The final City Connects Happy Hour of the season will highlight the partnership on Wednesday, May 16 at 5:30 PM in the Gordon Lounge.

Additionally, in an effort to better serve our community and to eliminate economic barriers to entry, City is opening up the Pay What You Want model beyond walk up sales at a single performance. With Nomad Motel, City is introducing Pick Your Price Previews: tickets may be purchased online, starting at just $5 (plus fees) to all performances May 12-17. See details at May not be combined with discounts.

Momentum Festival: New Plays at Different Stages will take place over the closing weekend of Nomad Motel, and includes readings and behind the scenes looks at the play development process. Meet the 2018 Momentum artists on Friday, June 1 at a happy hour from 5:00-7:00 PM. Full schedule and program line-up to be announced.

About Nomad Motel:
The not-so-sunny side of California is nothing new to Alix: she’s bouncing between motel rooms taking care of her twin brothers for her mostly MIA mother. Her classmate Mason is a budding songwriter trying to keep off the radar of his absent father’s Hong Kong mafia friends. Together, the savvy teens must learn to scrape by without giving up their dreams. This NNPN Rolling World Premiere play by newcomer Carla Ching (Fear the Walking Dead, I Love Dick) is a coming-of-age tale about making something out of nothing in the land of plenty.

Nomad Motel is directed by Bart DeLorenzo. The cast includes Katie Lynn Esswein (EQT Young Playwrights Festival, 2016), Shahine Ezell, Christopher Larkin (The CW’s The 100; Oblivion, City Theatre: 2015), Nelson Lee (Maple and Vine, City Theatre: 2012), and Lisa Velten Smith (Hand to God, City Theatre: 2016; Oblivion, City Theatre: 2015). The production team includes Gianni Downs (scenic design), Andrew David Ostrowski (lighting design), Robert C.T. Steele (costume design), M. Florian Staab (original compositions and sound design), Clare Drobot (dramaturg), Randy Kovitz (fight choreographer), and Patti Kelly is Production Stage Manager.

About Carla Ching: An L.A. native, Carla stumbled upon the pan-Asian performance collective Peeling at the Asian American Writers Workshop and wrote and performed with them for three years, which she still considers her first theater training. Her plays include Nomad Motel (National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere also at Unicorn Theatre and Horizon Theatre; O’Neill Playwrights Conference, National New Play Network Showcase of New Plays), Fast Company (South Coast Rep, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Lyric Stage, and Pork Filled Productions; winner of the Edgerton New American Play Award), The Two Kids That Blow Shit Up (Artists at Play and Mu Performing Arts), TBA (2g), and The Sugar House at the Edge of the Wilderness (Ma-Yi Theater Company). She’s an alumna of The Women’s Project Lab, the Lark Play Development Center’s Writers Workshop, and Meeting of the Minds, the CTG Writers’ Workshop, and the Ma-Yi Writers Lab. Former Artistic Director of Asian American Theater Company, 2g. TBA is published in Out of Time and Place. Fast Company is published by Samuel French. She will be working on her Toulmin Commission for The Atlantic Theater Company at Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor this summer. BA, Vassar College. MFA, New School for Drama.


May 12 – June 3, 2018
Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m.
Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. and/or 7:00 p.m.
Thursdays and Fridays at 8:00 p.m.
Saturdays at 1:00 p.m., 5:30 p.m., and/or 9:00 p.m.
Sundays at 2:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m.
For a complete listing of show times, please visit or call 412-431-2489.

Friday, May 18, 2018 at 8:00 p.m.


Pick Your Price Previews Performances May 12 – 17, 2018
Tickets starting at just $5 online, plus fees; purchase tickets in advance at Subject to availability.

City Connects Happy Hour Wednesday, May 16 at 5:30 p.m.
Featured partner: Allies for Health + Wellbeing. Meet the season-long City Connects partners and learn how to get involved in your community. Drink specials in the Gordon Lounge; food trucks at 13th & Bingham.

Post-Show Talkbacks Sunday, May 20 & 27, following the 2:00 p.m. performances
Hosted by Director of New Play Development Clare Drobot, this talkback discussion will feature the cast in conversation about the play’s themes.

Greenroom: Art & Afterparty Friday, May 25 at 8:00 p.m.
Join the cast and artistic team for a party in the Gordon Lounge following the performance. Complimentary house wine, Penn Brewery beer, and light snacks by Mallorca Restaurant will be provided. Tickets are just $30 for the evening with promocode GREENROOM.

Pay-What-You-Want Saturday, May 26 at 1:00 p.m.
A block of tickets is reserved for audience members to name their own price at this performance. Walk up sales only, beginning two hours before curtain. Call the box office to check on availability.

Momentum Happy Hour Friday, June 1 from 5:00-7:00 p.m.
Meet the 2018 Momentum Artists and help kick off our annual new works festival during closing weekend of the NNPN Rolling World Premiere of Nomad Motel. Free and open to the public.

ASL Interpretation Tuesday, May 29 at 7:00 p.m.
Open Caption & Audio Description Sunday, June 3 at 2:00 p.m.

412.431.CITY (2489) or
Tickets start at $38

Under 30: Reserve $15 tickets in advance for performances except Opening Night and Saturdays at 5:30 p.m.; rush tickets may be available at those performances. Must present ID to receive Under 30 pricing.
Seniors age 62 and older: $24 rush tickets may be purchased at the box office beginning two hours before curtain, based on availability.
Groups of ten or more: Contact Joel Ambrose at 412.431.4400 x286.

1300 Bingham Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203 (South Side)
Port Authority bus routes: 48, 51, 54, 81, 83

Patron parking is available in the lot across from the City Theatre entrances for $8, subject to availability.

City Theatre is Pittsburgh’s home for bold new plays. Located in the historic South Side, the company produces a season of regional and world premieres, including Citizens Market by Cori Thomas and an NNPN rolling World Premiere Nomad Motel by Carla Ching. City Theatre’s mission is to provide an artistic home for the development and production of contemporary plays of substance and ideas that engage and challenge a diverse audience.