Tiny Beautiful Things Tiny Beautiful Things

Tiny Beautiful Things  | 

April 10 — May 5
Nia Vardalos reprises the role she originated in her stage adaptation of acclaimed author Cheryl Strayed’s​ New York Times​ Bestseller of the same name. Conceived by Vardalos (writer/actor of ​My Big Fat Greek Wedding​), Thomas Kail (Director of ​Hamilton​) and Marshall Heyman (Journalist, Wall Street Journal​), this uniquely uplifting​ New York Times​ Critics’ Pick is about reaching when you’re stuck, healing when you’re broken and finding the courage to take on the questions which have no answers. The Playhouse brings you The Public Theater’s production of this touching new play.

“Vardalos Shines.”

-Broadway World

Based on the book by Cheryl Strayed

Adapted for the stage by Nia Vardalos

Co-Conceived by Marshall Heyman, Thomas Kail and Nia Vardalos

Directed by Sherri Eden Barber from the original direction by Thomas Kail

The Public Theater Production

85 minutes, no intermission

Members: FREE


Nia Vardalos reprises the role she originated in her stage adaptation of acclaimed author Cheryl Strayed’s​ New York Times​ Bestseller of the same name. Conceived by Vardalos (writer/actor of ​My Big Fat Greek Wedding​), Thomas Kail (Director of ​Hamilton​) and Marshall Heyman (Journalist, Wall Street Journal​), this uniquely uplifting​ New York Times​ Critics’ Pick is about reaching when you’re stuck, healing when you’re broken and finding the courage to take on the questions which have no answers. The Playhouse brings you The Public Theater’s production of this touching new play.

“Vardalos Shines.”

-Broadway World
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Nia Vardalos (Sugar)

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Vardalos wrote and starred in the hit film My Big Fat Greek Wedding which earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay, a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, and an Independent Spirit Award and People’s Choice Award. Stage credits include originating the role of Sugar in The Public Theater’s Tiny Beautiful Things, directed by Thomas Kail, Jennie in Theatre20’s Company, directed by Gary Griffin, and writer and actor for twelve The Second City’s revues (Chicago’s Jeff Award winner, Best Actress.) Writing and acting film and television credits include My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, Connie and Carla, I Hate Valentine’s Day, My Life in Ruins; For a Good Time, Call…; The Catch; Jane the Virgin; Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and Law & Order SVU. Vardalos is the New York Times bestselling author of Instant Mom, the story of adopting her daughter via foster care, and all proceeds are donated to adoption groups.


Teddy Cañez (Letter Writer #1)

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Broadway: A Streetcar Named Desire. Off-Broadway: Tiny Beautiful Things, ToasT (The Public Theater), Chimichangas & Zoloft (The Atlantic Theater), Post No Bills (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater). Regional: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (Hartford Stage), Mister Roberts (The Kennedy Center), Our Lady of 121st Street (Woolly Mammoth Theater). Film: Ben is Back, Shelter, A Most Violent Year, Now You See Me, Frances Ha, Tracers, Sleepwalk with Me, Enduro. TV : Madam Secretary (NBC; recurring), New Amsterdam, Blindspot, The Blacklist, Conviction, Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, and Law & Order: Criminal Intent (NBC), Tales of the City (Netflix; recurring), Dietland (AMC; recurring), The Good Fight, Elementary, Invisible, Person of Interest, and Blue Bloods (CBS), The Detour (TBS; recurring), Bar Karma (CurrentTV), Mob Doctor (FOX), How to Make it in America and The Wire (HBO; recurring). Video Games: Red Dead Redemption 2 (Rockstar). HERO Theater Company Member. Social: @teddycanez | Online: teddycanez.com


Natalie Woolams-Torres (Letter Writer #2)

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New York: Tiny Beautiful Things, The Mobile Unit’s Hamlet, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Public Theater); Julius Caesar, The Taming of the Shrew, and The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare in the Park). Film: Farewell directed by Chris Chalk. TV: Difficult People. She attended SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Theater Arts and Film.


Giovanni Adams (Letter Writer #3)

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Adams is thrilled to be making his Pasadena Playhouse debut. He recently played Waston in Anna Ziegler’s Photograph 51 and originated the role of Colis in Kemp Powers’ Little Black Shadows at South Coast Repertory Theatre. He played Neil in Donald Margulies’ The Model Apartment at Geffen Playhouse and was in the world premiere of Kemp Powers’ One Night in Miami (Rogue Machine Theatre; LA Drama Critics Circle Award and NAACP Theatre Award for Best Ensemble, 2013). He has participated in the Pacific Playwrights Festival, Bay Area Playwrights Festival and the Writer’s Workshop Retreat at Center Theatre Group to help develop new works. His other stage credits include Mount Misery (Cutting Ball Theater), The Recommendation and Bela Lugosi’s Dead (IAMA Theatre Company) and Miss Julie and King Lear (Yale Repertory Theatre). Recently, his solo show, Love Is A Dirty Word, developed in collaboration with Becca Wolff, premiered at VS Theatre and received Ovation and LA Drama Critics Circle awards recognition, 2016. His film and television credits include Nina, Criminal Minds, Zach Stone is Gonna Be Famous, Grey’s Anatomy, and Gary Unmarried. Adams was born in Jackson, Mississippi and received his BA from Yale University.


Sameerah Luqmaan-Harris (Alternate, Sugar)

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Off-Broadway: The Emperor Jones (Irish Repertory Theatre and Soho Playhouse), No Exit (The Pearl), Samuel Beckett’s Play and Act Without Words I (Irish Repertory Theatre), Lady Percy in Henry IV, Part I (The Public Theater), and ReEntry (Urban Stages). LA/NYC Credits: Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts 1, 2, & 3 (Mark Taper Forum – West Coast Premiere; Ovation Featured Actress Nominee, 2017), Seven and Disgraced (L.A. Theatre Works), Sight Unseen (Lounge Theatre), Fefu and Her Friends (Culture Project), Come Back to Me (Cherry Lane Theatre), and Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing. Regional: Mary T. & Lizzy K. (Arena Stage – World Premiere), ReEntry (Actors Theatre of Louisville; Baltimore Centerstage; Two River Theatre – World Premiere), Doubt (Asolo Repertory Theatre and Cape May Stage), Equus and The Constant Wife (Asolo Repertory Theatre). TV/Film: Sharp Objects and Room 104 (HBO), The Good Wife, Advantageous (Sundance Film Festival Special Jury Award, 2015), The Bravest, The Boldest (Sundance Film Festival, 2014; 6 Film Festival Best Actress Wins), City, Good Funk, Reagan, and The Outskirts. Online: sameerahluqmaanharris.com


Sarah Hollis (Alternate, Letter Writer #2)

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Hollis couldn’t be happier to return to her “artistic home” at Pasadena Playhouse! She has previously appeared as Jess in King Charles III and Ensemble in Pygmalion at Pasadena Playhouse. Other regional theater credits include: Beneatha in A Raisin In The Sun (A Noise Within, LADCC Nominated for Best Featured Performance), Zoe in An Octoroon (Kinetic Theater Company at New Hazlett Theater), Viola in Twelfth Night (PCPA Pacific Conservatory Theatre), and Betty 5 Understudy in Collective Rage: A Play in Five Boops (Boston Court). TV: 24 (FOX; recurring), Lie to Me (FOX), The Unit (CBS). Film: Kill Your Darlings, The Russian Doll, Falling (Slamdance 2018), Madness (Charlie Watchell, Director). Next up: Hollis is playing Viola in Twelfth Night, Witch in Macbeth, and Elizabeth Condell/Ensemble in The Book of Will at Utah Shakespeare Festival. Thanks to my loving family (especially my nephew Julian) and incredible friends. I couldn’t do this without my team at KMR and manager, Will Levine. Most importantly, thank you to Paul for believing in me…and everything. I love you, squish. Follow my path on social media: @mssarahhollis


Adam J. Smith (Alternate, Letter Writer #1 and #3)

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Pasadena Playhouse: 12 Angry Men, Intimate Apparel and Matter of Honor. Elsewhere: Nightwalk in the Chinese Garden (Center for New Performance/Huntington Gardens); As You Like It, Cloud 9, Henry IV Part 1 and Curse of Oedipus (Antaeus Theatre Company, Company Member); The Heir Apparent, Private Lives and How the Other Half Loves (International City Theatre); Three Sisters and Family Planning (Chalk Repertory); Beauty (La Jolla Playhouse); Mozart & Strauss (Disney Concert Hall with LA Philharmonic); In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play) (Chautauqua Theater Company, NY); An Evening of Betrayal: Betrayal/Othello (The 6th Act Theater Company); Untethered (Mountain View Mausoleum). Ojai Playwrights Conference, South Coast Rep, Boston Court, East West Players, Black Dahlia, The Blank, Wilshire Ebell, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Tennessee Williams Festival and numerous Off- and Off-Off- Broadway. TV: The Good Doctor, Jane the Virgin, The Orville, Scandal, Castle, 90210, Medium, Without a Trace, Numb3rs, Victorious, Chemistry, As The World Turns, and When Things Get Small (regional Emmy Award Winner) among others. Film: Taken 3, Zombie Strippers, and Deceit. Voiceover: Discovery Channel, Grand Theft Auto V, Final Fantasy XIII, SFMOMA Audio Tour. Faculty member at CalArts School of Theater. MFA: UCSD/La Jolla Playhouse, BA: Duke (magna cum laude).

Creative Team

Cheryl Strayed (Original Book Author)

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Strayed is the author of Tiny Beautiful Things, Torch, Brave Enough and the number one New York Times bestseller Wild. Her books have been translated into more than 40 languages around the world. The Oscar nominated film adaptation of Wild was released in 2014. Strayed’s essays and stories have appeared in the Best American Essays, Vogue, The New York Times, The Washington Post and elsewhere. Strayed is the co-host of The New York Times’ podcast Dear Sugars which originated with her popular Dear Sugar column.


Sherri Eden Barber (Director)

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Sherri Eden Barber is a New York based theater director and Artistic Director of Ricochet Collective. Recent: good friday (The Flea Theater), Only You Can Prevent Wild Fires (Ricochet Collective – Teatro Circulo), Happily After Ever (Ricochet Collective – 59E59, Edinburgh Fringe), Gordy Crashes (Ricochet Collective – IRT), Mr. Landing Takes A Fall (The Flea), Esperanza Spalding’s Emily’s D+Evolution (Development on European Tour), Herman Kline’s Midlife Crisis (The Beckett), Monstrosity, Polaroid Stories, and BENT (The New School for Drama), The Lightning Thief (Theatreworks USA), 24 Hour Plays on Broadway with Pablo Schreiber, Laverne Cox, and Melanie Griffith (American Airlines Theatre), Latrell: Live Tonight! (Joe’s Pub), Dance Lessons (winner of the Samuel French Short Play Festival), Men On Boats (Yale Drama). She has developed new work with Rattlestick, Orchard Project, The Flea, Culture Project, Chautauqua, and The Old Vic. Barber is a recipient of The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Directors Fellowship, the Core Company Director for The Orchard Project, a Drama League Directing Fellow, and recipient of the US/UK Exchange Award. RicochetCollective.com | SherriEdenBarber.com


Marshall Heyman (Co-Conceiver)

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Heyman has written for the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Vogue, InStyle, W, Harper’s Bazaar, New York and many others. He is also a writer for the AMC show Dietland.

Thomas Kail (Co-Conceiver, Original Director)

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Broadway directing credits include: Hamilton (Tony Award); In the Heights (Tony Nom); Lombardi and Magic/Bird. Other directing credits include the world premiere of Hamilton, Dry Powder, Tiny Beautiful Things, and Kings at the Public Theater; the world premiere of In the Heights; Broke-ology and the world premiere of When I Come to Die at Lincoln Center Theater; the world premiere of Daphne’s Dive at the Signature Theater. He is the co-creator and director of the hip-hop improv group Freestyle Love Supreme. He is a recipient of a Kennedy Center Honors Award, in addition to the Drama Desk Award, an Obie, a Callaway Award, the Lucille Lortel Award and the Martin E. Segal Award from Lincoln Center. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University.


Rachel Hauck (Scenic Design)

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Broadway: Hadestown, Heidi Schreck’s What The Constitution Means To Me, John Leguizamo’s Latin History For Morons. Recent work: Hadestown (National Theater, Citadel, New York Theater Workshop), Hurricane Diane (New York Theater Workshop), Othello, Twelfth Night (Shakespeare in the Park), The Lucky Ones (Ars Nova), You’ll Still Call Me By Name (Sonya Tayeh/Jacob’s Pillow), Tiny Beautiful Things, Dry Powder (The Public Theater), Amy And The Orphans, On The Exhale (Roundabout Theatre Company), Antlia Pneumatica, Grand Concourse (Playwrights Horizons). Princess Grace, Lilly Awards, Drama Desk, Lortel nominations, Obie Award for Sustained Excellence.


Jennifer Moeller (Costume Design)

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Recent: Tiny Beautiful Things (Public Theater), Sweat (Broadway, Public Theater, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Arena Stage), Mlima’s Tale (Public Theater), King Lear, Romeo & Juliet (Guthrie), Aubergine (Playwrights Horizons), Candide (LA Opera), The Last Goodbye (Old Globe), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Shakespeare in the Park), Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Tempest (Shakespeare Theatre Company), La Boheme (Kennedy Center), Dance and the Railroad (Signature Theatre), The How and the Why (McCarter Theatre Center), Winter’s Tale (Yale Repertory Theater), Six Degrees of Separation (Williamstown Theatre Festival).


Jeff Croiter (Lighting Design)

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Broadway: Bandstand, Falsettos, Something Rotten, Newsies, Peter and the Starcatcher, Holiday Inn, Penn & Teller, Disaster, Mothers and Sons, A Time to Kill, Soul Doctor, Jekyll and Hyde, The Pee-wee Herman Show, Next Fall, Kiki and Herb. Off-Broadway: Freestyle Love Supreme, The True, Chick Flick, The Other Josh Cohen, Daniel’s Husband, Smokey Joe’s Café, Jerry Springer The Opera, Tiny Beautiful Things, Cost of Living, Sweet Charity, Head of Passes, Cam Jansen. Other: Big Apple Circus, Penn & Teller at the Rio in Las Vegas, Family Guy Sings. Jeff has received Tony, Hewes and Bass awards, and Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Lortel nominations.


Jill BC Du Boff (Sound Design)

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Broadway: Hand To God, The Heidi Chronicles, Disgraced, Picnic, Wit, Other Desert Cities, Good People, The Constant Wife, Children of a Lesser God, The Good Body, Bill Maher: Victory… Off-Broadway includes Lincoln Center, Manhattan Theater Club, Atlantic, Vineyard, MCC Theater, Playwrights Horizons, The Public, Second Stage, New York Theater Workshop, Women’s Project Theater, Signature, Clubbed Thumb (Affiliate Artist). Awards: Ruth Morley Design Award, OBIE, Lilly Award, Drama Desk and Henry Hewes nominations. Audio Producer for The New Yorker Magazine. Love to Adam, ilo and Mabel.


David Meyer (Associate Scenic Designer)

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Pasadena Playhouse: Native Gardens, Belleville, King Charles III, Our Town. Off-Broadway: A Sucker Emcee, The Way West, Empanada Loca, and A Family for All Occasions (Labyrinth Theater). Regional: Hedwig and the Angry Inch and Merrily We Roll Along. Feature Film & TV Production Design: “Corporate Animals,” “John Wick 2” (reshoots), “Permission,” and “She’s Lost Control.” Art Direction: “Top Gun 2,” “Birdman,” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.” David studied Architecture and Theater at Syracuse University and received his MFA in Production Design for Stage and Film at NYU/Tisch. Online: davidmeyerdesign.com


Jennifer Slattery (Stage Manager)

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Pasadena Playhouse: Our Town, King Charles III, Belleville, Bordertown Now, and Native Gardens (ASM). Broadway: Bullets Over Broadway, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, Guys and Dolls, Oleanna, and Cry-Baby. Other NYC: The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Heading East (The Asia Society), NY2022, Shir a Shalom (Guggenheim Works & Process). Regional: Next to Normal (East West Players), Restoration Comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Titus Andronicus, Othello (The Old Globe), and work with La Jolla Playhouse, New Harmony/USI, the Rude Mechs, 7 Devils Playwrights Conference, and ZACH Theatre. Slattery is on the faculty at California Institute of the Arts. Education: MFA (UCSD), MA (UT Austin), and BA (University of Florida).


Bonnie McHeffey (Assistant Stage Manager)

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New York: Thunderbodies (SoHo Rep), The Waiting Game (E2E 59E59), Exposure (Workshop, Joe’s Pub), Little Women (Reading, Primary Stages), Orchids (Reading, Theaterlab). Regional: Skeleton Crew, Pride & Prejudice, Ann (Dorset Theatre Festival); Bordertown Now (Pasadena Playhouse); Networks: The Sound of Music National Tour. All my love to Mom and Dad.

Nicole Arbusto (Los Angeles Casting)

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Los Angeles theater includes King Charles III here at the Playhouse, The Golden Dragon and The House in Scarsdale: A Memoir For The Stage both at The Theatre @ Boston Court. Twelve years with the Ojai Playwrights Conference working on new work from Stephen Adly Guirgis, Terrence McNally, Jiehae Park, JC Lee, Robert Askins etc. Film includes The Lovers from A24 starring Debra Winger & Tracy Letts. TV includes: Room 104 and Animals both from Duplass Brothers Productions and airing on HBO.


Pasadena Playhouse does not offer advisories about the subject matter for this production, as sensitivities vary from patron to patron. If you have any inquiries regarding content, age-appropriateness or stage effects (such as strobe lights or theatrical fog) that may affect patron comfort, please contact Patron Services during Box Office hours at 626-356-PLAY. Children under age 5 are not permitted in any performance at Pasadena Playhouse.

Ticket Options

Please Note: Due to scheduling conflicts Nia Vardalos will not be appearing in the below performances of Tiny Beautiful Things.

Saturday, April 13 at 2 PM
Saturday April 20 at 2 PM
Sunday, April 21 at 2 PM
Saturday, April 27 at 2PM
Sunday, April 28 at 2 PM
Saturday, May 4 at 2 PM
Sunday, May 5 at 2 PM



To purchase tickets, select a date in the calendar above.


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