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By Mac Rogers

Directed by Jordana Williams

The Great War has just ended. The fledgling Republic of Czechoslovakia boasts a thriving artistic community. At the center of that community is Karel Capek, a celebrated playwright and a passionate advocate for all his newborn nation can achieve. But this brave new world arrives faster that Karel could have ever expected when a young woman walks into his life with a strange mannequin in a wheelchair... a mannequin that gets up and walks all by itself. 


UNIVERSAL ROBOTS offers a compelling alternate history of the Twentieth Century, imagining the invention of the robot in 1921 Czechosolvakia and chronicling the shocking consequences of that invention right up to the present day. 


Part science fiction thriller, part love story, part political allegory, UNIVERSAL ROBOTS is a fast-paced, riveting story of war, faith, art and technology that culminates, in the words of NYTheatre's Martin Denton, in an "edge-of-your-seat finish equal to the best storytelling of stage and screen."

"Quiet, intense, funny, affecting." - The New York Times

"Universal Robots is impressive... truly multivalent and rich." Time Out NY

"Anyone who enjoys intimate theatre... will surely get their money’s worth." - Theater Is Easy

"When they announce the nominees for best play on the Tonys... Universal Robots should be on that list." - Show Showdown

"The production takes place in the spectacular Sheen Center for Thought and Culture. Director Jordana Williams has her cast make full use of the exquisite space.” - City of Kik


UNIVERSAL ROBOTS is being presented at

The Sheen Center for Thought and Culture

Black Box Theater

(18 Bleecker Street between Bowery & Lafayette)

June 3rd through 26th  


Performances run Thursday through Saturday at 8pm, Sunday at 2pm,

and Monday at 8pm with additional performances on Wednesday, June 15 & 22 at 8pm.



Or Call OvationTix 866-811-4111


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Nikki Andrews-Ojo, Greg Oliver Bodine*, Hanna Cheek*, Jorge Cordova*, Tandy Cronyn*, Neimah Djourabchi*, Jason Howard*, Tarantino Smith*, Sara Thigpen*, and Brittany N. Williams* 
*denotes appearing courtesy Actors' Equity Association

Accessible Performances
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We are thrilled to offer a variety of accessible performances for our upcoming production of Universal Robots. Over the course of the run, we will be offering an ASL Interpreted Performance, an Audio Described Performance, and a Family Support Matinee. In addition, we are grateful to partner with The Sheen Center, an ADA accessible space.


Find out more about each performance below. To reserve a seat for one of these performances, please email Sean Williams at

If you have any questions about one of our accessible performances or have a group who may be interested in attending, email MIkell Kober at

ASL Interpreted Performances

On Thursday, June 23 at 8pm, two certified sign language interpreters will be providing a sign language interpreted performance of Universal Robots.  

Audio Described Performance

On Wednesday, June 15 at 8pm, we will have assistive listening devices available for those patrons with visual impairments. Please select the ADA option when you reserve your tickets. A member of Gideon will be in contact with you to set up a reservation for your device.  

Family Support Matinee

On Sunday, June 12th from 2:00pm- 4:30pm, we will run theater workshops for 4-12 year olds led by experienced teaching artists. While parents are enjoying Universal Robots, children will be getting their own introduction to the arts, allowing the whole family to experience a day of theater. To register your children for this workshop, please select “Parents’ Ticket” when you reserve your tickets for the performance. You will be contacted by a member of Gideon’s staff to set up your child’s spot.  

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Special Event : Sunday, June 19th at 4:45pm
Becoming Human
A Panel with Religious Leader Artists

A panel of religious leaders who are also active theater artists will be in discussion at the Black Box Theater at The Sheen Center on June 19th to discuss the themes and ideas in Universal Robots by Mac Rogers. The panel includes Reverend Micah Bucey of Judson Memorial Church, Isaiah Tennenbaum of Flux Theater Ensemble and Emily Snyder, Artistic Director of Turn to Flesh Productions and theology teacher. 

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