New York theater ensemble The TEAM — which will be developing a new performance piece while in residence with PlayMakers Repertory Company at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill — will unveil its work-in-progress May 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Frey Rehearsal Hall in the Center for Dramatic Art on Country Club Road.

The performance is free and open to the public. A discussion with the creative artists will follow. Space is limited and based on availability. To reserve seats, contact the PlayMakers box office at 919.962.7529.

Now in its earliest stages, the piece will be a year-long exploration of the difference between drive and discipline. Each member of the five-member ensemble will commit to a year of learning a new skill or task — banjo, writing a novel, electric guitar — and to spending the year learning Mandarin as a group.

While in residence at PlayMakers from May 24-30, they will begin their studies, as well as meet with UNC faculty to learn about cognitive therapy, early childhood education and contemporary American politics.

The TEAM is a young, innovative theater company comprised of a core group of New York University alumni plus associated artists dedicated to dissecting and celebrating the experience of living in America today. Their performances have been described as “at times a rock concert, at times a sporting event” and “Gertrude Stein meets MTV.” The Village Voice (New York) describes The TEAM as “staggeringly ambitious.” The Herald (Scotland) called the ensemble “the artistic conscience of a younger generation.”

They will be joined in the creative process by guest artist Taylor Mac, who was seen in April as the Emcee in PlayMakers’ hit season finale “Cabaret.”

The TEAM is at PlayMakers as part of a residency program that provides support for the company’s creative research and development with access to PlayMakers’ professional staff, production shops, rehearsal halls, performance spaces and the intellectual resources of UNC. The TEAM will then take its creation, incubated at PlayMakers, on to performances around the world.

The ensemble is the third participant in the PlayMakers residency program, which is supported by a $200,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation which funds annual residencies by theater ensembles. Previous participants have been Philadelphia’s Pig Iron Theatre Company and SITI Company of New York.

The grant also supports the Innovate@Carolina Campaign, a drive to help make Carolina a world leader in launching university-born ideas for the good of society.

Based in UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences, PlayMakers is the Carolinas’ premiere resident professional theater company. The Drama League of New York has named PlayMakers one of the best regional theaters in America. Subscription packages are currently available for PlayMakers’ 2013-2014 season. For more information, visit www.playmakersrep.org.

The TEAM website: http://theteamplays.org

Taylor Mac website: www.taylormac.net/  

PlayMakers contact: Connie Mahan, (919) 962-5359, cmahan@email.unc.edu.