Rutgers Theater Company presents Jonathan Franzen’s "House For Sale" Oct. 28 through Nov. 12

In the wake of his mother’s death, Jonathan flies to his childhood home in Missouri, saddled with the chore of sifting through his mother’s belongings and putting the property on the market. In the process, Jonathan is struck by how disconnected he feels to the place he once cherished. He is beset by memory and feeling a keen burden to sell the property for the price his exacting mother would approve of.

This rumination on change and loss—at turns humorous and poignant—forms the heart of House For Sale, a play with music based on acclaimed author Jonathan Franzen’s (The Corrections, Freedom) 2006 essay by the same name. House For Sale runs from Friday, October 28 through Saturday, November 12, 2011, at the Victoria J. Mastrobuono Theater. Daniel Fish adapted the essay for the stage and directs.

Fish says he believes that House For Sale addresses a universal experience of “loss, death and wrestling with one’s past. The piece is steeped in loss and grief.” He says that Jonathan, visiting from New York City just before his 40th birthday, is “coming to terms with his isolation from his family.”

According to Fish, music, composed by Obie Award winner Polly Pen, is crucial to the production.

“Music lets a piece operate on a more emotional and visceral level,” Fish says, so that the audience is drawn into the story in a variety of ways.

“This is a play about memory, about family, someone searching for his home realizing that the search is the home,” Fish adds. “He’s trying to figure out, where do I live? Where do I come from?”

Performances are 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $25 for the general public, $20 for Rutgers alumni and employees and seniors and only $15 for students with valid ID. The Victoria J. Mastrobuono Theater is in the Mason Gross Performing Arts Center, 85 George Street (between Route 18 and Ryders Lane), on the Douglass Campus of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, in New Brunswick. For more information about any Mason Gross event, and to learn more about the 2011-2012 Rutgers Theater Company season, visit or call the Mason Gross Performing Arts Center ticket office at 732-932-7511.

Media Inquiries: Laurie Granieri, 732-932-7511