PRESS RELEASE: City Theatre explores addiction and recovery with the autobiographical THE WHITE CHIP By Sean Daniels

March 15th, 2018 / Posted in News & Press, Press Releases, White Chip

City Theatre explores addiction and recovery with the autobiographical


By Sean Daniels

April 7 – May 6, 2018
Lester Hamburg Studio

“…a candid, self-lacerating, and often funny memoir.” – The Boston Globe

“Fearless, fast-paced and very funny.” — The Nashua Telegraph

“A brave, personal take on the spiral of alcoholism” – The Sun (Lowell)

Pittsburgh, PA (March 15, 2018) – Continuing a run of new works on the South Side, City Theatre is proud to present the second-ever production of The White Chip by Sean Daniels (director of The Lion, City Theatre, 2016; Artistic Director of Merrimack Repertory Theatre). A highly-theatrical and often comic journey through Daniels’ real-life struggles with alcoholism, the play features a cast of three: one actor who plays Sean, and two who represent the various voices of reason—and chaos—in his life. It is directed by Sheryl Kaller (Tony Award Best Director Nominee: Next Fall) and will run in the Lester Hamburg Studio, April 7 – May 6, 2018. Tickets are on sale now.

About The White Chip: Sean is on top of the world: he’s married, has good friends, and is steps away from his dream job running one of the hottest theaters in the country. He also happens to be an alcoholic spinning out of control. The White Chip follows his life from first sip to first love, critical hit to critical care, all the way to rock bottom where he carves an unusual path to sobriety. This highly entertaining autobiographical tale from director Sean Daniels is a wry and wild theatrical journey to recovery.

“My instinct for writing The White Chip was—when I was trying to get sober and worried that I would die if I didn’t find something that would help me—that I couldn’t find anything that felt like it was now, that felt like it was current, that felt like it was funny or had a sense of humor. Everything was very kind of 1920s, very kind of old school AA, and I thought, alright well, if I make it through this, I have to write the thing I can’t find,” said playwright Sean Daniels, speaking to the company at first rehearsal. “And so when I got through it, I thought, well that was the promise I made, now I have to actually do it and began working on it and putting this play together.

“What I am so moved by now, is that it feels like it’s a time when the idea of embracing science is a revolutionary idea—facts are up for debate, which facts we want to believe and which facts we choose not to—and we are doing a play that says ‘No, facts are actually facts, and if you can believe in them, they can actually save your life,’” he continued. “So I’m grateful to be doing this now, because it feels like it is important for me to be able to say to other people: there are many ways in which you don’t have to die… There’s a possibility of embracing the things that we should know in 2018 that aren’t a mystery; that really—with a greater support system and greater knowledge in the world—fewer people have to die.”

City Theatre continues its season-long commitment to community engagement with Familylinks. Patrons are invited to bring donations of art supplies to support the art therapy program at Familylinks and the organization will host a talkback discussion about addiction on Sunday, April 15 following the 2:00 p.m. matinee.

Familylinks provides a continuum of services that address multi-dimensional and complex needs, with the goal of helping individuals and families become whole, strong, independent and productive. Familylinks serves more than 9,000 people annually through its service locations throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania.  The agency delivers a wide array of short- and long-term services that benefit children, youth, adults, seniors and families including alcohol and drug use treatment.

The White Chip is directed by Sheryl Kaller. The cast includes Kyle Cameron as Sean, Daina Michelle Griffith as #1, and Daniel Krell as #2. Hank Bullington is scenic designer, Robert C.T. Steele is costume designer, Andrew David Ostrowski is lighting designer, Leon Rothenberg is sound designer, Julie Felise Dubiner provided original illustrations, and Taylor Meszaros is stage manager; casting by Lauren Port, C.S.A. It is produced in association with Tom Kirdahy, Hunter Arnold & Sally Cade Holmes.

Sean Daniels has had his writing produced and developed at Actors Theatre of Louisville, New York Stage and Film, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, Theatrical Outfit, and Dad’s Garage.  He is the Artistic Director of Merrimack Repertory Theatre. He’s previously served as the Artist-At-Large for Geva Theatre Center and spent four years at the Tony Award-winning Actors Theatre of Louisville as the theatre’s Associate Artistic Director (where he directed 17 productions including five Humana Festivals). Mr. Daniels is the former Associate Artistic Director/Resident Director of the California Shakespeare Theater and before that spent a decade as the Artistic Director and Co-Founder of Dad’s Garage Theater Company in Atlanta.


April 7 – May 6, 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, April 13, 2018 at 8:00 p.m.


How to Tell your Start-Up Story: On Art, Technology, and the Power of Personal Narrative Sunday, April 8 at 5:00 p.m.
City Theatre, in conjunction with Innovation Works, will host a networking event and panel discussion as part of Inclusive Innovation Week 2018. Panelists will share their individual stories and the ways in which those experiences shaped their career paths, offering audience members insight on how to harness their own narratives for future success across arts & technology fields. 5:00-5:30 p.m.: Networking in the Gordon Lounge; 5:30-6:15 p.m.: Panel Discussion in the Main Stage Theater. Panelists will include playwright Sean Daniels, entrepreneur Jason Wolfe, and more TBA.

Post-Show Talkback with Family Links Sunday April 15, following the 2:00 p.m. performance
Hosted by Director of New Play Development Clare Drobot, this talkback discussion will feature the cast and representatives from community partner Familylinks.

Greenroom: Art & Afterparty Friday, April 20 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 will be provided. Tickets are just $30 for the evening with promocode GREENROOM.

Pay-What-You-Want Saturday, April 21 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.

Post-Show Talkback Sunday April 22, following the 2:00 p.m. performance
Hosted by Director of New Play Development Clare Drobot, post-show talkbacks encourage audiences to engage with the artists behind the performances.

ASL Interpretation Tuesday, April 24 at 7:00 p.m.
Open Caption & Audio Description Sunday, April 29 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 the upcoming Citizens Market by Cori Thomas and 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.