“A Slain Journalist’s Voice Resounds. Directed with an uncompromisingly clear eye and steady hand by the gifted Lee Sunday Evans. A vivid portrait of a woman as well as of her times.”

–Ben Brantley, The New York Times

CLICK to read the New York Times review

A New York Times Critic’s Pick


“May Massini’s evocation of the memory of Anna Politkovskaya help to remind us all of the vital importance of a free, functioning press to our democracy.”

–Exeunt NYC

CLICK to read the Exeunt NYC review


“Nadine Malouf, Nicole Shalhoub, and Stacey Yen could pass as easily for “nasty” women as “intractable” ones and wear both badges proudly”

– Theatermania

CLICK to read the Theatermania Review

PLAYBILL: CLICK to hear director Lee Sunday Evans break down a scene from Intractable Woman



I never write commentary, or speculation, or opinions.

I have always believed–and I continue to believe– that it is not up to us to make judgements.

I am a journalist, not a court of law or a magistrate.

I limit myself to reporting the facts.

The facts: As they stand, as they are. It seems like the easiest thing, but here it’s the most difficult.

And it exacts the highest price. 

A riveting theatrical portrait of the journalist and activist Anna Politkovskaya, this powerful play, by one of Italy’s most celebrated writers, takes us behind the headlines she generated while exposing details of Russia’s war in Chechnya.

Politkovskaya was assassinated in her Moscow apartment building in 2006. As journalists continue to put their lives on the line around the world, and efforts to undermine a free press escalate here in the U.S., her dispatches speak directly to us today.


Stefano Massini just made headlines—from The New York Times, Variety, The Guardian, and othersfor the National Theatre’s new production of his The Lehman Trilogy, directed by Sam Mendes. In a Critic’s Pick review for The New York Times, Ben Brantley praises The Lehman Trilogy for its “exceptional concentration of narrative simplicity and depth, in which minimal resources seem to expand into unlimited riches.” The Guardian has awarded the production five stars and called it “astonishing.” With PlayCo’s upcoming production of Massini’s Intractable Woman, American audiences will have their first opportunity to see his work staged in the U.S.



Please join us for Idea Lab and Playback post-show conversations:

Sunday 9/16—Talkback

Thursday 9/20—Idea Lab with the Overseas Press Club of America

Sunday 9/30–Talkback

These events are free and open to the public, and will begin at approximately 9pm immediately following the evening performance. Ticket purchase to the performance is not required. For those joining us for just the Idea Lab event, seating will be on a first come, first served basis according to availability.







Written by:
Stefano Massini

Translated by:
Paula Wing

Directed by:
Lee Sunday Evans

Nadine Malouf
Nicole Shalhoub
Stacey Yen

Set Design:
Marsha Ginsberg

Costume Design:
Junghyun Georgia Lee

Lighting Design:
Masha Tsimring

Sound Design:
Stowe Nelson

Production Stage Manager:
Laura Smith

Production Manager:
Matt Cecchini



Second Floor Theater
150 First Avenue (at 9th street)
New York, NY 10009

Cast: Nadine Malouf, Nicole Shalhoub, Stacey Yen

Photos: Julieta Cervantes

Toshiki Okada

is a multiple award-winning writer and director, and the artistic consultant at the Piccolo Teatro di Milano. His plays have been translated and published in many languages. Intractable Woman premiered in the 2007-08 season and has been performed throughout Europe and internationally. Massini’s play the The Lehman Trilogy, inspired by the 2008 banking crisis, premiered at the Piccolo is 2015 directed by Luca Ronconi. Translated into 14 languages and performed at many major European theatres, the trilogy was staged in a new production directed by Sam Mendes at London’s National Theater in July, 2018 and will play at New York’s Park Avenue Armory next spring. Massini’s book The Lehman Trilogy, based on the play and published in 2017, received many awards including the Mondello – Super Mondello award, the Campiello Jury of Literary Experts Award, the Giusti Award, the Fiesole Award and the De Sica award. His second novel, The Interpreter of Dreams, was adapted into a play and premiered at the Piccolo in 2018.

Aya Ogawa

is a playwright, actor and translator. Her translation of Stefano Massini’s Intractable Woman, premiered in Montréal, Québec at Imago Theatre in 2017.  Her original play, Risky Phil premiered at Young Peoples Theatre in Toronto in April. Paula’s stage adaptation of Ben Rice’s novella Pobby and Dingan was published in 2016 through the Kennedy Centre. She is a Resident Artist at Soulpepper Theatre Company in Toronto, where she is active in their youth and community programming. Paula is a sessional professor at the University of Windsor in both the Acting and Drama in Education and Community programs. This spring her musical adaptation of Margaret Mahy’s The Man Whose Mother Was A Pirate will tour Eastern Ontario with Thousand Islands Playhouse. Paula will appear as Karole at the Playhouse in their world premiere of The Canadian this summer.

Dan Rothenberg

is an Obie Award winning Director + Choreographer. Select production credits include: Dance Nation by Clare Barron (Playwrights Horizons). HOME by Geoff Sobelle (BAM Next Wave), Farmhouse/Whorehouse by Suzanne Bocanegra (BAM Next Wave), Miller, Mississippi by Boo Killebrew (Dallas Theater Center), The Winter’s Tale (Public Theater, Mobile Unit), [Porto] by Kate Benson (Bushwick Starr/Women’s Project), Bull in a China Shop by Bryna Turner (LCT3), Caught by Christopher Chen (Play Co.), Macbeth (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival), Wellesley Girl by Brendan Pelsue (Humana Festival), D Deb Debbie Deborah by Jerry Lieblich (Clubbed Thumb), A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks… by Kate Benson (OBIE Award – New Georges/Women’s Project), The Play About My Dad by Boo Killebrew (59E59), God’s Ear by Jenny Schwartz (Juilliard), Family Play (1979 to Present) by CollaborationTown, The Caucasian Chalk Circle by Bertolt Brecht with original music by Nicholas C. Williams. Her work has been presented/developed at: Baryshnikov Arts Center, Sundance Theater Lab, BAX, CATCH, LMCC, Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center, Juilliard. Lee received the 2017 SDC Breakout Award, and the 2016 Susan Stroman Directing Award from The Vineyard Theater.

Photo by Andrew Kluger


Nadine Malouf

NADINE MALOUF’s previous work with PlayCo saw her cooking in multiple home kitchens, in the one woman, site specific New York Premiere of Oh My Sweet Land. She most recently played the leading role of Laila, in A Thousand Splendid Suns at The Old Globe, which she originated last year at A.C.T (World Premiere). This year she was also Off Broadway in Martyna Marjok’s new play queens at Lincoln Center’s LCT3. She also played the title role in the World Premier of Salomé with the STC (winner of seven Helen Hayes awards). Other Off-Broadway: Today is my birthday (Page73), Ultimate Beauty Bible (Page73), School for Scandal (Redbull), The Who & the What (LCT3), Exile (Cherry Lane). Other Theatre: Scorched (Syracuse Stage), and Macbeth (RADA). New works developed at Sundance, The Public, Lincoln Center, Complicité, among others. Recent TV/Film: The Looming Tower, Resolutions, May in the Summer. Training: Syracuse University, and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Photo: Kevin Davis

Nicole Shaloub

NICOLE SHALHOUB Broadway: China Doll. Off-Broadway: The Clean House (LCT), The Fifth Column (The Mint), Hell House (St. Ann’s Warehouse).Regional: Failure: A Love Story (CTG), Five Mile Lake (SCR), American Night (Yale Rep), The Goodman, Berkeley Rep, Lookingglass, K.C. Rep, American Repertory Theater, Williamstown Theater Festival.  TV: Elementary, Seal Team, Bull, Madame Secretary, The Gaffigan Show, New Girl, The Mentalist, Legends, Scandal, The Good Wife, L&O: CI. FILM: Sex & The City 2, The International, Wetware, Hollywood, Dr. Brinks & Dr. Brinks.

Stacey Yen

STACEY YEN appeared in PlayCo’s Enjoy. Most recently, she co-authored and performed in the critically acclaimed Miles for Mary at Playwrights Horizons. NYC theater credits: The Public, Ars Nova, Bushwick Starr, Clubbed Thumb, Under the Radar Festival, among others. Regional theater: ACT, Arena Stage, Berkeley Rep, Goodman Theatre, Hartford Stage, Huntington Theatre, Lookingglass, Williamstown Theater Festival, among others. International theater: Kings Theater, Scotland; The Esplanade, Singapore. TV Credits: Guess Who Died (pilot by Norman Lear); The Blacklist, Blue Bloods, CSI:NY, Elementary, The Good Wife, Gossip Girl, High Maintenance, Instinct, Madame Secretary, Nurse Jackie, Treme, Ugly Betty, Unforgettable.  Education: Brown University, NYU Grad Acting.

Community Partners



The objectives of the Overseas Press Club of America founded in 1939 in New York City by a group of foreign correspondents are to maintain an international association of journalists working in the United States and abroad to encourage the highest standards of professional integrity and skill in the reporting of news to help educate a new generation of journalists to contribute to the freedom and independence of journalists and the press throughout the world, and to work toward better communication and understanding among people.