Don’t Dress for Dinner at International City Theatre

Don't Dress for DinnerIn my first full-equity job since returning to Los Angeles and getting my MFA, I’ll be playing a lead role in Don’t Dress for Dinner at Long Beach’s International City Theatre.

It’s a French-style three door farce with mistresses, misunderstandings, and mighty-tiny negligees, and I get to trip over the furniture, do spit-takes, and smooch pretty ladies for two hours straight. It’s a tough life.

This is seriously the perfect part for me, in a really funny script with incredibly talented castmates. Jobs like this don’t come around a lot, especially in LA. I’d love it if you could come. Get tickets here.

Here’s the schedule:

Don’t Dress for Dinner

Previews Oct 9 and 10, 2013 at 8pm
Opens Oct 11, 2013; closes Nov 3, 2013
Thu, Fri, and Sat at 8pm, Sunday at 2pm

International City Theatre
at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center
300 East Ocean Blvd, Long Beach [map]

AEA/SAG members get $15 tickets on Thursdays, and everyone can use my exclusive discount code, MATT13, for $10 off your seats.

Get Tickets Now — remember: MATT13

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“Antwone Fisher: A Play” at UCLA

I’m very excited to announce my last show at UCLA. Antwone Fisher, the subject (and writer) of Denzel Washington’s 2002 movie of that same name, is retelling the story of his life in theatrical form, using actors from UCLA’s grad program to portray the cast of hustlers, sailers, neighborhood kids, and family members that populate his incredible past.

I don’t mean to gush, but it’s been an honor to work with Antwone and to try to bring this material to life. It’s an incredible, terrifying, heartbreaking, inspiring story, and it’s a terrific way to bring my 3 years in grad school to a close.

I hope you can come. I have a feeling it’s going to be a hot ticket, so please make reservations early!

Buy Tickets for Antwone Fisher: A PlayANTWONE FISHER: A PLAY
written & directed by Antwone Fisher

Buy Tickets Online

Feb 29-March 3 & March 14-March 17 at 8pm
Matinees March 3 & March 17 at 2pm

UCLA’s MacGowan Hall, Room 1340

Directions: Enter UCLA on Hilgard Ave near Sunset. Park in Structure 3. MacGowan Hall faces the Murphy Sculpture Garden; the theater is in Room 1340 on the first floor.

Find Out More about Antwone

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The Adding Machine at UCLA, Nov 4–12, 2011

I’m very happy to announce my second-to-last show at UCLA—not because it’s the second-to-last, but because it’s a fascinating play and should be an interesting production, directed by a member of Anne Bogart’s SITI Company, J. Ed Araiza. We’re doing it with minimal production—just light and sound, really—and it will be very viewpointsy and artsy.

For those of you who don’t care about any of that and are coming just to see me: I don’t show up until the very end. But when I do, watch out. This is my third play at UCLA where I speak the very last line on stage (a tradition I started with my first professional show at Santa Monica Playhouse, Mezzanine). It’s a great scene by Elmer Rice, and I think it’s worth sticking around through intermission for.

The Adding Machine
By Elmer Rice
Directed by J. Ed Araiza

After 25 years on the job, Mr. Zero’s life changes when he is replaced by an adding machine.

Featuring: Anne Butler, Adrienne Hertler, William Hickman, Josephine Keefe, Evan Lipkin, Mary Beth Menna, Adam Mondschein, Jeremiah O’Brian, Marcus Oberheide, Philicia Saunders, Colin Simon, Bryan West, Matthew Wrather, Dash You

Nov 4–5 & 8–12 at 8pm
Nov 5 & 12 at 2pm

Buy Tickets Online

The Freud Playhouse at UCLA

Park in Structure 3, make your way to the Sculpture Garden, turn around, and the theatre will be in front of you (it’s the big theater next to the Little Theater). Here’s a map:

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The Versailles: A Reading of a New Comedy

What’s funny about the great recession?
It’s 2008, and the residents of “The Versailles,” a huge luxury condo complex plopped down in the middle of inner-city Philly, band together when their landlord goes AWOL, their neighbors start defecting, and the power goes off. Both a hilarious satire and a fascinating study of what happens to civilization when its comforts are stripped away—urban camping, righteous theft, yuppies with food stamps—this new comedy caputres the feeling of desperation at the height of the Great Recession and mercilessly skewers the hypocrisy and wishful thinking that got us there. Read More »

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The Cherry Orchard at UCLA

I’m glad to announce that we’re doing The Cherry Orchard at UCLA, directed by Mel Shapiro, the head of graduate acting at the school of Theater, Film and Television. It’s a fantastic show and I hope you can see it!

Matthew Wrather as Firs in The Cherry Orchard at UCLAUCLA School of Theater Film and Television presents
directed by Mel Shapiro

March 4 at 8pm
March 5 at 2pm
March 5 at 8pm
March 9 at 8pm
March 10 at 8pm
March 11 at 8pm
March 12 at 2pm
March 12 at 8pm

The Little Theatre, MacGowan Hall, UCLA

To buy tickets, call (310) 825-2101
or visit the UCLA Central Ticket Office online.

Park in Structure 3, make your way to the Sculpture Garden, turn around, and the theatre will be in front of you. Here’s a map:

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Is There Life After High School?: My First Show at UCLA

Everybody has been telling me to let them know when I’m in a show at UCLA. Well, here it is! And what’s more, it’s a musical (the first one the graduate actors at UCLA have ever done.

I’m glad to announce that next month, you can come see me sing, tap-dance, play piano, and—oh yes—act a little bit in Is There Life after High School, with music and lyrics by Craig Carnelia. It’s a good show, it’s fun, and, most importantly, it’s short. (Less than 2 hours! You’ll be home in time for The Daily Show.)

Is There Life After High School?Is There Life after High School?
Book by Jeffrey Kindley, Music and Lyrics by Craig Carnelia
Directed by Professor Gary Gardner

November 9, 10, 13, 18 & 19, 2010 at 7:30 p.m.
November 13, 2010 at 2 p.m.

The Little Theatre, MacGowan Hall, UCLA

To buy tickets, call (310) 825-2101
or visit the UCLA Central Ticket Office online.

Park in Structure 3, make your way to the Sculpture Garden, turn around, and the theatre will be in front of you. Here’s a map:

view larger

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Dead Man’s Cell Phone at UCLA

I’m very excited to be working on my first full-length project with my classmates at UCLA. If you live out here, I hope you will consider coming out to see some very talented actors. And also me.

by Sarah Ruhl

directed by Alex Levy

featuring Lauren Dunagan, Josephine Keefe, Nina Law, Catherine Leong, Colin Fairchild, and Matthew Wrather

An incessantly ringing cell phone in a quiet caf. A stranger at the next table who has had enough. And a dead man—with a lot of loose ends. So begins Dead Man’s Cell Phone, a wildly imaginative new comedy by playwright Sarah Ruhl, recipient of a MacArthur ”Genius” Grant and Pulitzer Prize finalist for her play The Clean House. A work about how we memorialize the dead— and how that remembering changes us—it is the odyssey of a woman forced to confront her own assumptions about morality, redemption, and the need to connect in a technologically obsessed world.

Thursday, May 6 at 7:30pm
Friday, May 7 at 4:30pm
Saturday, May 8 at 7:30pm

1330 MacGowan Hall,
UCLA School of Theater Film and Television
(Enter on Hilgard near Sunset; park in Structure 3.)

Tickets are free; open seating; first come, first served.

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Returning to the Ancestral Homeland

Though I’ve announced this in several places (Facebook, Twitter), I haven’t really made the update here… Earlier this year I accepted an offer of admission to the graduate acting program at the UCLA School of Theatre, Film and Television. It’s a 3-year M.F.A. program, and it means that almost 11 years after moving to New Haven, I’m headed home to Southern California.

I’m really excited about the program. Living on the east coast, I wasn’t really aware of it. (Their showcase is just in Los Angeles and I gather that most of the graduates stay there—and why not?) I was more aware of UCLA as a film school.

But they kindly offered to fly me out for a tour after I was admitted, and I was blown away by the talent of the students, the quality of the instruction (srsly… I sat in some absolutely incredible acting classes), and how nice and welcoming everyone was.

So. I’m bidding farewell to the East Coast, and, for the most part, bidding farewell to life as a working actor (there won’t be any time for it amid what I’m told is a very intense schedule. Except for summers.)

This site and mailing list will probably become much less of a brochure site/blog for my acting career and more of a lifestream aggregating the various things I do all around the internet. (Here’s the prototype.) I hope you’ll stay subscribed to the RSS feed or mailing list, which will probably be updated a little more often. I hope you’ll stay in touch. And if you happen to be in the LA area, I hope you’ll stop by!

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Appearing at La MaMa ETC in “It Matters Where You’re Buried”

I’m pleased to announce that I’m appearing (and playing a little piano!) in a reading of It Matters Where You’re Buried, a new cabaret pray about chanteuse and nightclub hostess-to-the-stars Brick Top, at La MaMa ETC in the east village, as a part of their reading series Shadow. Here are the details:

by Beth Campbell

Directed by George Ferencz
Featuring Sheila Dabney as Brick Top
Lee Beebout as Jim Comstock
and Matthew Wrather as Itchy

Brick Top, cabaret chanteuse and saloon keeper to the stars of the Lost Generation in Paris, gives an interview to Jim Comstock, editor of the West Virginia Hillbilly newspaper, in her bar in Heaven.

Where ever I am, that’s Brick Top’s. As a gin joint it ain’t bad.
—Brick Top

February 14, 2009 at 7:30pm
La MaMa Annex, 74A East 4th Street, NYC [map]
Free Admission /No Reservations

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KNB Review at

I am delighted that the review of KNB the Musical was a rave, happier still that the reviewer seems to have gotten the writer/director’s aims exactly, and astonished that the following sentence appeared in it:

The cast is led by Glenn Seven Allen as Batteaux, who sings, dances, and acts with grand finesse.… Standouts include…Matthew Wrather, who, in addition to dancing, is a featured pianist in a couple of numbers.

Only two more chances to see me in the show–check out the main post for details.

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