Full Length Play
120 minutes (2 hours)
Time Period - Present Day, New Millennium/21st Century
Settings Of Play - Northern Idaho, the present.
FEATURES / CONTAINS
Monologues, Scene work
Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes, Elaborate / High Volume Costumes
Intense Adult Themes, Strong Language
College Theatre / Student, Professional Theatre, Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups
RECOGNITION / AWARDS
WINNER - 2013 Lucille Lortel Award, Best Play
WINNER - 2013 Drama Desk Special Award for Significant Contribution to Theatre
WINNER - 2013 GLAAD Media Award, Outstanding New York Theatre
NOMINEE - 2013 Drama League Award, Outstanding Production of a Play
NOMINEE - 2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards, Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play
NOMINEE - 2013 John Gassner Award, Oustanding New American Play
FINALIST - 27th Annual Lambda Literary Award, for best LGBT Drama of 2014/15
Samuel D. Hunter is a 2014 MacArthur "Genius Grant" Fellow
Samuel D. Hunter is the 2012 recipient of the Whiting Award for Drama
On the outskirts of Mormon Country, Idaho, a six-hundred-pound recluse hides away in his apartment and slowly eats himself to death. Desperate to reconnect with his long-estranged daughter, he reaches out to her, only to find a viciously sharp-tongued and wildly unhappy teen. Big-hearted and fiercely funny, The Whale tells the story of a man's last chance at redemption, and of finding beauty in the most unexpected places.
"Riveting [...] An impassioned and arresting clash of minds and emotions. I was glued to the stage [...] Equally dynamic and horrifying." - New York Observer, Read More
"Vibrant and provocative [...] Hunter explores his material with sharp-eared skill and sensitivity." - Village Voice, Read More
"Extraordinary. As he did in his breakthrough play A Bright New Boise, Hunter has constructed an outsize, gothic scenario in tender miniature." - New York Magazine, Read More
"FOUR STARS. A deeply affecting and piercingly amusing play by Samuel D. Hunter [...] Leaves an emotional wallop in its wake." - New York Daily News, Read More
"CRITIC'S PICK. FOUR STARS. Sharp and funny [...] Harrowingly good, endowing [its main character] with wit and dignity." - Time Out New York, Read More
Samuel D. Hunter on The Whale
"Though the story of The Whale is fundamentally a story of a father trying to reconnect with a daughter, he's doing so by trying to teach her how to write a good essay. But in teaching her how to write a good essay, he's trying to teach her how to think independently and how to relate to other people. Ultimately, he's teaching her how to have empathy." Read the entire essay here.
RELATED ARTICLES ON BREAKING CHARACTER
A Gripping Redemption: THE WHALE
by Julia Izumi
February 25, 2015
The Whale was developed in part at the Denver Center Theatre Company's 2011 New Play Summit. The play had its world premiere at the Ricketson Theatre in Denver, Colorado, presented by the Denver Center Theatre Company in January 2012. It was directed by Hal Brooks. The play was first presented Off Broadway by Playwrights Horizons at the Peter J. Sharp Theatre on October 12, 2012. It was directed by Davis McCullum.