Market Overview

Theatre Exile Presents The World Premiere Of D-Pad


PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The first production of Theatre Exile's 2020/21 season, the world premiere of Jeremy Gable's D-Pad, explores the world of independent gaming through the lens of a female developer. The show will be the first Theatre Exile production presented virtually, allowing national audiences to enjoy the upcoming season. D-Pad encapsulates the "grit" theater-goers have come to expect from the cutting-edge theater company that has been producing provocative and engaging plays since 1996.

Written with humor, thoughtfulness and humanity, the production follows lead character, Alex, played by actor Ang Bey, as she finds herself in a nightmare of production delays, self-doubt, and a rabid fan base. During the course of the play, Alex slowly separates herself from family and cuts herself off from friends — a means of coping as she struggles to navigate the misogyny of gaming culture and finds herself in a state of isolation.

D-Pad was first introduced to audiences in 2015 during Studio X-hibition, Theatre Exile's new play development program that produces live readings of local playwriters' scripts while they are in progress. D-Pad is part of Philadelphia-based playwright Gable's "Glass Ceiling Series," an ongoing collection of plays about strong, complex women finding success in industries typically dominated by men.

The 90-minute production will launch on November 27 for previews, and opening night will take place December 2. For the first time in Theatre Exile's history, the 16-show production will be a virtual and ticketed event. D-Pad will be presented at various times giving audiences in various time zones the opportunity to enjoy the show.

"D-Pad was the play that gave us confidence to know that we could do a season under these unusual circumstances," said Deborah Block, Producing Artistic Director at Theatre Exile. "The conversations between the characters in D-Pad are organic, so it won't feel like a stage play that was unnaturally put behind a screen. The themes of isolation and friendship are incredibly resonant right now. I believe that we need stories, more than ever, as a guidepost as we navigate these confusing times."   

Theatre Exile has partnered with Drexel's Entrepreneurial Game Studio to ensure an elevated digital viewing experience exploring the gaming industry. The staff at Theatre Exile is utilizing technology including customized green screen backdrops, asynchronous filming of scenes to create a cohesive theatrical experience, and the HD-compatible PatronManager viewing platform to bring audiences an innovative and creative show.

Gable is no stranger to online productions or gaming; he created 140: A Twitter Performance and The 15th Line, original plays that premiered on Twitter. Gable also produced the video game adaptation of his play Watch Me Jump, a finalist for the Excellence in Narrative Award at the 2019 Independent Games Festival.

Gable's expertise in the world of gaming contributed to the successful development of an updated virtual script. D-Pad was uniquely adapted for an online platform by the playwright with Theatre Exile.

"Adapting D-Pad to a virtual production felt like a natural progression of the story's setting. There are development teams who spend years making a game and never meet in person," Gable said. "This year has proven that art can be created with people from different parts of the globe."

Directed by Brey Ann Barrett — a California-born and Philadelphia-based director, and Theatre Exile's Interim Associate Artistic Director, D-Pad also features a collective of talented actors: Ang Bey, Paloma Irizarry, Anthony Martinez-Briggs, and Michael Doherty.


November 27 – December 1 (previews), December 2 – December 13, 2020 (full production).


$15 - $45. Purchase online.



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SOURCE Theatre Exile

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