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Globe picks Mamet’s ‘Oleanna’

New plays by David Mamet, Alan Ayckbourn and Sheldon Epps highlight the Old Globe Theater’s newly announced January-June season.

The slate for the Globe’s 581-seat main stage includes Epps’ hit musical revue, “Blues in the Night” (Jan. 27-March 6), Bruce Gooch’s new play, “Dirt” (March 24-May 1), and Mamet’s latest work, “Oleanna” (May 19-June 26).

In the 225-seat Cassius Carter will be Ayckbourn’s interactive fantasy, “Mr. A.’s Amazing Maze Plays” (March 19-May 1) and Henry Ong’s one-woman drama, “Madame Mao’s Memories” (May 14-June 26). Opening the season (Jan. 22-March 6) will be one of two plays by Chicago writer Cheryl L. West, “Jar the Floor” or “Puddin ‘n Pete.”

“Floor” focuses on four generations of African-American women who gather for an afternoon birthday celebration; “Puddin” concerns an unlikely romance between an ambitious woman and a janitor.

According to Globe artistic director Jack O’Brien, “Dirt”– about the stormy relationship between a reluctant 40ish farmerand his headstrong, ailing father — was brought to the Globe’s attention by actor James Whitmore.

If schedules can be worked out, Whitmore will play the father.

“Maze Plays” is another of Ayckbourn’s convoluted works, allowing the audience to determine which way the comedy’s plot goes, and “Memories” will feature Kim Miyori playing the wife of China’s Chairman Mao Tse-tung in a jail-cell remembrance of her life.

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