Theatre Exile Presents The Philadelphia Premiere Of Lost Girls By John Pollono This February

Following five Barrymore wins, Theatre Exile continues their 20th anniversary season with Lost Girls by John Pollono. This hard-hitting drama is the story of three generations of women struggling to rise above their limited prospects, in a world indifferent to their struggles, to prevent history from repeating itself. The show is directed by Exile’s Founding Artistic Director Joe Canuso and features an ensemble cast with Catharine Slusar, Trevor William Fayle, Sean Bradley, Molly Ward, Amy Frear and Susanne Collins. The show is presented with support from Honorary Producer Louis Bluver and Season Sponsor Zallie's ShopRite Supermarkets.

Previews begin on Thursday, February 16th and opening night is Wednesday, February 22, 2017. The show runs for a total of 21 performances through Sunday, March 12, 2017. Tickets are on sale for $10.00 to $40.00 at or by phone (215) 218-4022.

“Lost Girls looks at this dysfunctional, blue collar family who struggles to overcome patterns that emerge from their past,” said Producing Artistic Director Deborah Block. “It is easy for them to get lost along the way when they focus on day to day survival. The story jumps into the middle of their personal storm - and explores their strengths, scars and flaws as they battle with teenage pregnancy, bad relationships, alcoholism and making ends meet. Along the way, we learn love isn’t always enough to fix the really big problems -- or is it?”

Filled with poignant passions, plot twists and dark humor, Lost Girls is both a tense family drama and a moving teenage love story. When Erica, their sixteen-year-old daughter, goes missing during a winter storm, Maggie and Lou—former high school sweethearts, now divorced—are forced to confront the legacy of their past decisions. The Los Angeles Times called Lost Girls "...a truthful psychological study of characters trying to figure out how to coexist with their grievances.”

“You can see how people sacrifice themselves, and all you can do is keep going blindly into the storm with the hopes that everything you're doing is going to work out,” added Director Joe Canuso. “I want audiences to leave with a sense of hope. In times like the country is facing, where everything seems so hard and so uninspiring, there is some hope in pulling back a little bit and realizing that making changes where you can might have a ripple effect over time.”

For Lost Girls, Canuso will direct Exile’s largest cast ever to perform in Studio X -- including four new actors to the company. The ensemble cast includes Exile veteran Catharine Slusar (Annapurna and Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Theatre Exile, A Wrinkle in Time by People’s Light & Theatre) as grandmother/mother Linda, Molly Ward (Playwrights Horizons, Ensemble Studio Theater, Soho Rep) as mother/daughter Maggie, Suzanne Collins (Two Walkens created by Susanne Collins and Kevin Meehan, The House at the End of the World by Plant Me Here) as daughter/granddaughter Erica/Girl, Sean Bradley (Much Ado About Nothing by Theatre Horizon, The History Boys by Arden Theatre Company) as ex-husband/father Lou, Amy Frear (Run for Your Wife by Hedgerow Theatre Company, A Clockwork Orange by Luna Theatre Company) as stepmom/wife Penny and Exile veteran Trevor William Fayle (The Whale by Theatre Exile, The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning by Inis Nua Theatre Company) as Boy.

Also, a major first for Exile, Studio X will be fitted with a revolving stage to better transform the space into Lost Girls’ working-class New England Town. The production crew charged with the transformation of Studio X includes many Exile regulars and some new faces - including Amanda Klute (Assistant Director), Colin McIlvaine (Set Designer), Thom Weaver (Lighting Designer), Katherine Fritz (Costume Designer), Liz Atkinson (Sound Designer), Flora Vassar (Props Designer), Peter Schmitz (Dialect Coach), Lo McDowell (Scenic Charge), Jessica Darling (Production Manager/Stage Manager), Rob Edmondson, Jr. (Technical Director), AJ Garrigus (Master Carpenter), Brad Pouliot (Sound Engineer), Emily Jolley (Assistant Stage Manager) and Timothy Odom (Assistant Production Manager).

Lost Girls runs February 16 through March 12, 2017 (opening night Wednesday, February 22 at 8:00pm). Tickets are $10.00 to $40.00 and are available online at or by calling the Theatre Exile Box Office at (215) 218-4022. Performances for Lost Girls take place at Theatre Exile’s Studio X, 1340 S. 13th Street (13th and Reed Streets). Lost Girls is supported by Honorary Producer Louis Bluver and Season Sponsor Zallie's ShopRite Supermarkets.

Theatre Exile continues its 2016/17 season with the Studio X-Hibition New Play Development Series - including Watch me Jump by Jeremy Gable on Monday, March 13; The Gap by Emma Goidel on Monday, April 13; and History of Walking by James Ijames on Monday, May 15. All three readings will take place at Studio X. Tickets are $10 each or all three for $20.00.

Theatre Exile will end the season with the Philadelphia premiere of Buzzer by Tracey Scott Wilson at Studio X from May 4 to May 28, 2017. Buzzer will be directed by Matt Pfeiffer and stars Akeem Davis.

For more information about Theatre Exile, please follow on Twitter at @theaterexile, like on Facebook, call (215) 218-4022 and visit


John Pollono is a playwright, actor and writer from New England. His play, Small Engine Repair, which he wrote and starred in, won the LA Ovation and Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle (LADCC) Awards for Best Play for the 2011 LA production, for which he also received the LADCC Award for Best Writing. The play also enjoyed a critically-acclaimed, extended run Off Broadway with MCC Theater Company (NYTimes Critics’ Pick.) As an actor, John has appeared in one of the most talked about shows on TV this year, “This Is Us” on NBC, as well as “Grey’s Anatomy,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Masters of Sex,” “Major Crimes” and "Mob City." Pollono is also a founding member of Rogue Machine Theatre in Los Angeles, which produced Small Engine Repair as well as his plays Lost and Found, Razorback and Lost Girls. His script for Stronger, Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman's story starring Jake Gyllenhaal, will go into production in Spring 2016 for Mandeville and Lionsgate – and debut on movie screens in fall of 2017. And he also is developing a half hour dark comedy “My First Black Friend,” created with playwright Kemp Powers, for Color Force and FX Network.


Joe Canuso is the Founding Artistic Director of Theatre Exile and has directed many of their shows including A Behanding in Spokane, That Pretty Pretty, Mr. Marmalade, Red Light Winter, The Gin Game, Burkie, and Belmont Avenue Social Club, as well as the world premieres of Full Figured/Loves to Dance, The Philly Fan, Last Call, Amputation Nation, Cryptome, Big Blonde, Live at the Apollo Diner, and The Frankenharry Plays. He was nominated in 2006 by the Barrymore Awards for Outstanding Direction of a Play for Killer Joe, again in 2014 for Annapurna and this year for Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, and was named Best Director in 2009 by The Philadelphia Weekly for Blackbird. He was nominated as Best Director for a Phindie Award for The North Plan in 2013. He was part of Exile’s Barrymore Award winning ensemble for Glengarry Glen Ross in 2007 and has performed internationally in London, Prague and Italy. 


Sean Bradley - Past Credits Include: Metamorphoses, Macbeth, Three Sisters u/s, The History Boys u/s (Arden Theater), The Glass Menagerie (Act II Playhouse), Hansel and Gretel, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, The Wind in the Willows, Hamlet, She Stoops to Conquer, Antigone, The Merchant of Venice, The Venetian Twins, Apology, Measure for Measure (Quintessence Theatre Group) Five Kings (Revolution Shakespeare),  A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Winter’s Tale (Delaware Shakespeare Festival), Lord of the Flies (Curio Theatre), Hamlet, As You Like It (Philadelphia Shakespeare), Much Ado About Nothing (Theatre Horizon).  Training: University College Dublin (MA), The University of the Arts (BFA).

Susanne Collins - Susanne Collins - Graduate of the University of the Arts, she is a founding member of the Plant Me Here artist collective, and is one half of the performance duo Miniature Refrigerator Operator alongside Kevin Meehan. Recent credits: The House at the End of the World (Plant Me Here, 2016 Fringe), Nowhere Fast (Sam Tower + Ensemble/BRAT Productions), Two Walkens (MiniFridgeOp), Swamp Is On (Pig Iron w/ Dr. Dog). Much love and thanks to Joe and Deb, her family, the moms, and of course Kevin.

Trevor William Fayle - Recent credits include Two Gentlemen of Verona (Shakespeare in Clark Park) The Radicalization of Bradley Manning (Inis Nua) Photograph 51 (Lantern Theatre) and The Whale (Thearre Exile). Thanks to Kevin, Drew & the Family. Love, as always, to Campbell.

Amy Frear - Graduate of Temple University, she holds her MFA in Acting from the University of Washington in Seattle. She has performed with Seattle Repertory Theatre, Opera House Arts, Hedgerow, Found Theater, and on various devised experimental projects.

Catherine Slusar - Member of Actor’s Equity Association, and has been performing in Philadelphia since arriving in 1995. A native of Connecticut, she studied theater at Yale.  In Philadelphia she has performed at Exile: Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, (Barrymore Best Actress) Emma in Annapurna, (Barrymore Nominee), Faye in Iron (Barrymore Nominee); The Arden: all roles in The Syringa Tree, (Barrymore Nominee), Gi in Northeast Local, among others.  She’s also performed at InterAct, Live Arts Festival, Lantern, People’s Light, Act 2, Shakespeare in Clark Park, and Bristol Riverside.  Outside of Philadelphia, Catharine has acted in NYC, Minneapolis, CT, MI, Russia, and Norway.  Catharine is the recipient of The F. Otto Haas Award for Emerging Artists, a Barrymore Award, and an Independence Fellowship. She is an Assistant Professor at Bryn Mawr and has taught at Rowan, Yale, Özel Bilgi Lisesi in Turkey, and she has an ongoing partnership with a k-12 school in South Philadelphia, EM Stanton, where she works on Shakespeare.

Molly Ward - New York: Playwrights Horizons, Ensemble Studio Theater, Ma Yi Theater, 59E59 Theaters, Soho Rep, NY International Fringe Festival, Woodshed Collective, Brick Theater, HERE, Ohio Theater, Theater for the New City, PS122, Ontological Hysteric Theater, 4th Street Theater. Regional: American Repertory Theater, Hartford Stage, Denver Center, Pioneer Theater, Playmaker's Repertory Theater, Bard Summerscape, Barrington Stage, Provincetown Theater. International Festivals: Edinburgh International Festival, Festival D'Automne, Theater Der Welt, and more. TV: Jessica Goldberg’s The Path with Aaron Paul (Hulu), Ali LeRoi's Are We There Yet? (TBS). Short film Creator: The Art of Wooing, The Martha series. Education: MFA Harvard/Moscow Art Theater School, BA Vassar College. Native of Philadelphia making my Philadelphia debut.