The Coast Starlight

World-Premiere Play

The Coast Starlight

August 20 – September 15, 2019 | Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre

By Keith Bunin | Directed by Tyne Rafaeli

One morning, a young man boards the Coast Starlight, the long-distance train that runs from Los Angeles to Seattle. He’s got a secret that can land him in terrible trouble, and he has roughly one thousand miles to enlist the help of his fellow travelers – all of whom are reckoning with their own choices in search of a way forward. Keith Bunin’s new play is a smart, funny and compassionate story about our capacity for invention and re-invention when life goes off the rails.

A La Jolla Playhouse Commission originally developed in the 2018 DNA New Works Series

Complete your evening at The Coast Starlight by making a reservation at our onsite restaurant James’ Place, just steps away from the theatre, or stop by for a drink. Click HERE to reserve your table. James’ Place opens at 5:00 pm.

“MASTERFUL…A rare gem of a theater piece…Extraordinary acting…affecting and often drop-dead funny”
» Read more at the San Diego Union-Tribune

“First-rate world premiere production”
» Read more at Talkin’ Broadway

“Bunin’s ingenuity comes to the fore”
» Read more at CityBeat

“I recommend you buy a ticket”
» Read more at BroadwayWorld

Approximate run time: 95-100 minutes. No intermission.

Content note: This production contains adult themes and language.

Need more detail?
The Playhouse’s mission is to be a safe harbor for the unsafe and surprising. We are proud to engage with artists and audiences on a wide range of subjects as we explore our world together. In order to preserve the excitement of the story-telling that will unfold on stage, we do not list all potential triggers for audiences. Please call our Patron Services Office if you’d like to discuss any concerns you have prior to attending.

Production Sponsors
Dowling & Yahnke Mintz
Una K. Davis
Brian & Silvija Devine

Recipient of an Edgerton Foundation New Play Award

» Click here to read the program online

ACCESS Performance (ASL interpretation, audio description): Saturday, September 7 at 2:00 pm

»Click here to purchase tickets for ACCESS Performances, Friday Fare, and other Audience Engagement Events

Top banner photo credit: Camila Canó Flaviá and Nate Mann in The Coast Starlight; photo by Jim Carmody

Cast & Creators
  • Creators
  • Cast
  • Design
Image of Keith Bunin Keith Bunin Playwright

Mr. Bunin is very happy to return to La Jolla Playhouse, where his play Sam Bendrix at the Bon Soir was produced in 2012. His plays The Busy World Is Hushed, The Credeaux Canvas and The World Over all premiered Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons. His other plays include The Unbuilt City (New York Stage and Film), The Principality of Sorrows (Pure Orange Productions) and the musical 10 Million Miles (Atlantic Theatre Company). He wrote the screenplay for the film Horns and was a writer for the HBO series In Treatment. He is currently writing screenplays for MGM, Universal, HBO Films and Fox Searchlight. He lives in Brooklyn.

Keith Bunin Playwright
Image of Tyne Rafaeli Tyne Rafaeli Director

Ms. Rafaeli is a New York-based director of new plays, classics and musicals. Recent productions include Ming Peiffer's Usual Girls at Roundabout Theater Company (New York Times Critics’ Pick), Craig Lucas' I Was Most Alive with You at Playwrights Horizons (New York Times Critics’ Pick), Martyna Majok’s Ironbound and the world premieres of Anna Ziegler’s Actually and Amanda Peet’s Our Very Own Carlin McCullough at Geffen Playhouse, Michael Yates Crowley’s The Rape of the Sabine Women at The Playwrights Realm, and the New York premiere of In a Word by Lauren Yee. She is a 2016-18 Time Warner Directing Fellow at the Women's Project Theater and received the 2014 SDC Sir John Gielgud Fellowship for Classic Direction.

Tyne Rafaeli Director
Image of Mia Barron Mia Barron Liz
Image of Mary Rose Branick Mary Rose Branick Understudy for Jane
Image of Camila Canó-Flaviá Camila Canó-Flaviá Jane
Image of Rhys Coiro Rhys Coiro Noah
Image of Nate Mann Nate Mann TJ
Image of Stephanie Weeks Stephanie Weeks Anna
Image of Christine Penn Christine Penn Understudy for Liz
Image of Garrett Schulte Garrett Schulte Understudy for TJ
Image of Rob Yang Rob Yang Ed
  • Arnulfo MaldonadoScenic Designer
  • Denitsa BliznakovaCostume Designer
  • Lap Chi ChuLighting Designer
  • Daniel KlugerComposer and Sound Designer
  • Shirley FishmanDramaturg
  • TBD Casting;
    Stephanie Yankwitt, C.S.A.
    and Margaret Dunn
  • Ashley R. MartinStage Manager
  • Tyler LarsonAssistant Stage Manager
  • Becca DuhaimeProject Production Manager
  • Joseph HendelAssistant Director
  • Samuel Keamy-MinorScenic Design Resident Assistant
  • Emily WootenStage Management Intern
Venue Info

Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre

The third and newest of La Jolla Playhouse's theatres, the 6,500-square-foot Sheila and Hughes Potiker theatre is the centerpiece of the first permanent year-round home for the Playhouse — the $17 million Joan and Irwin Jacobs Center.

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