Next Door at NYTW provides a home for companies and artists who are producing their own work. Meeting the artists where they are in their process, this initiative provides each project with subsidized resources and space for development and performance in the newly renovated Fourth Street Theatre. As part of an ongoing effort to expand support for artists at every stage of their careers, this series will serve nearly 100 additional artists in the first year alone.

The Elephant in Every Room I Enter


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Created by Gardiner Comfort & Kel Haney
Featuring Gardiner Comfort
Directed by Kel Haney


November 9, 2017—November 25, 2017

THE ELEPHANT IN EVERY ROOM I ENTER runs 75 minutes with no intermission

Good Neighbor Program Directions Accessibility Calendar
Read Synopsis

THE ELEPHANT IN EVERY ROOM I ENTER is a strikingly intimate solo piece about Gardiner Comfort's experience as an actor living with Tourette Syndrome. Created with his frequent collaborator Kel Haney You're Not Tough (HERE Arts Center; Dixon Place), the play explores the week Gardiner spent at the Tourette Association of America National Conference in Washington, DC. Surrounded by hundreds of other people with Tourette's: it was the first time he felt "normal." Using an erratic and energetic performance style (a nod to Tourette's itself), along with groundbreaking video design (Caite Hevner & Lianne Arnold), this original show blends comedy, dance and a personal outlook on disability. “In the course of the well-put-together show—there was nothing self-indulgent about it—Comfort described going to a Tourette’s conference in Washington, D.C., an occasion he illustrated with a level of care that was striking, not least because the performance was devoid of sentimentality. Comfort’s clear-eyed efforts reminded me of the work of his peer Nilaja Sun.” – Hilton Als, The New Yorker

Scenic & Video Design by Caite Hevner & Lianne Arnold
Costume Design by Summer Lee Jack
Lighting Design by Jimmy Lawlor
Sound Design by Elisheba Ittoop
Choreography by Dan Safer
Production Stage Manager - Michal Mendelson
Production Manager - Elizabeth Goodman
Assistant Director - Matthew Sciarappa
Sound Associate - Ben Scheff
Assistant Costume Designer - Brenna McShane
Marketing & Social Media Strategist - Whitney Biancur
Press Representative - Matt Ross Public Relations


Gardiner Comfort / Creator/Performer

Gardiner Comfort is an actor, writer and teacher.  He was diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome when he was 7 years old.  The Elephant in Every Room I Enter was created with Kel Haney in Mabou Mines’ Resident Arts Project with its world premiere at La Mama; Original solo show You’re Not Tough, directed by Kel Haney (HERE Arts Center, Dixon Place); Fishmen (Intar); Be The Death of Me (The Civilians); The Zero Hour (13P); A Parsifal (PS122); Red Beads (Mabou Mines); Julius Caesar (ART and world tours); Henry IV Part 1 (BAM and Hebbel Theatre); Hamlet and Much Ado About Nothing (Empirical Rogue). MFA from ART.

Kel Haney / Creator/Director

Also with Gardiner Comfort: You’re Not Tough (HERE, Dixon Place). Recent directing credits include: Chris Cragin Day’s A Woman (Summer Shorts, 59e59), Neil LaBute’s What Happens In Vegas (59E59- world premiere), Neil LaBute’s The Way We Get By (American Theater Group- regional premiere), Vickie Ramirez’s Glenburn 12WP (59E59), Jonathan Caren’s The Recommendation (The Flea), Quiara Alegria Hudes’s Water By The Spoonful & Deborah Brevoort’s My Lord, What A Night (both at Premiere Stages). She has directed/developed new work with Abingdon Theatre Company, The Amoralists, Ars Nova, Atlantic Theater Company, Cherry Lane, Keen Company, Labyrinth, The Lark, Manhattan Theatre Club, Ma-Yi, Naked Angels, New Dramatists, New Georges, Partial Comfort, Playwrights Realm, Rattlestick, Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater, Westport Country Playhouse, & Williamstown. Also: MTC Directing Fellow, Lincoln Center Directors Lab, Mabou Mines Residency, Old Vic/New Voices Exchange and a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre. Ms. Haney also directed the critically acclaimed short films, I Am Them and Stay Close. Upcoming: Chris Cragin Day’s Foster Mom (Premiere Stages), Laura Maria Censabella’s Paradise (Luna Stage, Passage Theatre).