Thursday, October 12, 2017

Pioneer Valley Theatre News October 12, 2017

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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 October 12 - November 1, 2017

It's the final weekend to check out THE PILLOWMAN at Gateway City Arts - tickets and more information below. It's also your last chance to catch GREATER TUNA at Silverthorne this weekend. 

Smith College New Play Reading Series features a new play by Mary Beth Brooker this Friday - it's a free reading! And of course, Happier Valley Comedy has another hilarious set of improv comedy to get you through the weekend. 

The next issue will include events through November 8. Submit upcoming events via the link below or by emailing me before Tuesday at midnight. Any questions, comments or feedback? Email me at

Submit Your Theatre Event
Purchase Tickets to Ghost Light Theater's THE PILLOWMAN
from Howlround
Getting Serious About Promoting Plays by Women
by Michael Wright
From the article: 

The lack of representation of female playwrights in theatre seasons across the US is no longer something over which to sadly shake our heads. It is, quite simply, a disgrace. For those of us whose latent militancy has been awakened by the current administration in Washington, DC, seeing to it that true balance is pursued is as much of a political act as writing to an elected official.

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!
Ghost Light Theater Presents: The Pillowman
10/12 (7:30 PM), 10/13 (7:30 PM), 10/14 (7:30 PM)
Gateway City Arts: 92 Race Street, Holyoke, MA 01040

With echoes of Stoppard, Kafka, and the Brothers Grimm, THE PILLOWMAN centers on a writer in an unnamed totalitarian state who is being interrogated about the gruesome content of his short stories and their similarities to a series of child murders. The result is an urgent work of theatrical bravura and an unflinching examination of the very nature and purpose of art.

Katurian - Greg Mahoney
Tupolski - Sue Boyle Dziura
Ariel - Ted Trobaugh
Michal - Josh Mason
Man - Colin Vigneault
Woman - Connie J. Houle

Directed by Kevin Tracy

**This play has strong language and depictions of violence. It is intended for mature audiences.**

General Admission - $10

October 12, 13, and 14 with performances at 7:30 pm, and a 2 pm matinee on Saturday, October 14
Fourth floor of The Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center (formerly The Arts Block) in downtown Greenfield, MA

Twenty different residents of tiny Tuna, Texas, come to life onstage in Silverthorne Theater’s production of the perennially popular comedy, Greater Tuna. Two of Silverthorne’s favorite actors, John Reese and Julian Findlay, take on the play’s challenging lightning-fast costume, voice and persona changes under the direction of veteran Valley theater artist Steve Henderson. 

There will be a post-show conversation with the director and cast after the October 12 performance. The Hawks & Reed PAC is located at 289 Main Street on the Greenfield Common in the middle of the town’s Cultural District. It is air-conditioned and handicapped accessible. 

Written by Texans Ed Howard, Joe Sears, and Jaston Williams, Greater Tuna brings us a day in the life of the third smallest town in Texas as seen through the eyes of OKKK Radio Station announcers Arles Struvie and Thurston Wheelis. In the course of the play, the two morph into such characters as Vera Carp, self-appointed guardian of the town’s morals; Petey Fisk, the desperate head of the local SPCA; Bertha Bumiller, a housewife who has lost control of her children, husband and pets; and many others.

The trials and tribulations of this wild assortment of personalities reflect beliefs and practices that may mystify New Englanders. By many standards, the play is anything but poitically correct, but behind the accents and opinions are small-town folks with problems and aspirations with which we can identify.

Tickets are $20 general admission, $18 for students or seniors (65+) and may be purchased online at Full information and tickets available at
The Majestic Theater presents

October 12 - 22
Majestic Theater, West Springfield

The Tony Award-winning musical was adapted from Robert James Waller's 1992 book, which also inspired the hit film starring Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood.
The story revolves around Francesca Johnson, an Italian war bride living in Winterset, Iowa in 1965. She has had eighteen years of a largely unfulfilling farm life, and when her husband Bud and two teenage children leave Iowa to attend a national 4H fair, she looks forward to a weekend free from responsibility. But then a stranger named Robert Kincaid, a photographer for National Geographic, drives up seeking directions to the covered bridges he's been assigned to photograph, and from that moment both of their lives change.
Cast members include Heather Hannon (Francesca), John Baker (Bud Johnson), Joe Casey (Robert Kincaid), Bryan Austermann (Michael), Molly Damon-Rush (Carolyn), Margie Secora (Marge), Kevin Reid (Charlie), and Kaytlyn Vandeloecht (Marian/Club Singer/Waitress). Theater Project Founder Danny Eaton is producing director, Mitch Chakour is music director and set design is by Greg Trochlil. Costume design is by Dawn McKay, and Dan Rist is lighting designer. Cate Damon is stage manager, and production manager is Stephen Petit.
Ticket for the play range from $23-$33 and are now available by calling or visiting the box office during its hours of operation, which are Monday through Friday 10am – 5pm and Saturday 10am – 1pm. For additional information, visit the website.  
Smith College Department of Theatre New Play Reading Series presents 

by Mary Beth Brooker
directed by Alison Smith
Friday, October 13 at 7:30 PM in Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre
Mendenhall Center for the Performing Arts 122 Green Street, Northampton

Brooklyn hipsters Bette and Axel have retreated to a cabin in the Berkshires for a quiet weekend, only to discover the cabin has been promised to a group of eccentric seniors who are conducting an end-of-life ritual. Haphazard and sincere, this ceremony in the woods results in a conjuring of worlds unconscious and mythic. 

Free and open to all

The Women of Lockerbie - A Wilbraham United Players production

Friday October 13 - 7:30
Saturday October 14 - 7:30
Sunday October 15 - 2:30
Friday October 20 - 7:30
Saturday October 21 - 7:30
Sunday October 22 - 2:30

All performances on the Fellowship Hall Stage at Wilbraham United Church
written by Deborah Brevoort

A mother from New Jersey roams the hills of Lockerbie, Scotland, looking for her son's remains that were lost in the crash of Pan Am Flight 103. She meets the women of Lockerbie, who are fighting the U.S. government to obtain the clothing of the victims found in the plane's wreckage. The women, determined to convert an act of hatred into an act of love, want to wash the clothes of the dead and return them to the victim's families.

Directed by Deborah Trimble
Jim Martin
Shannon Martin
Janet Crosier
Kate Hebert
Bill Terbush
Julie Datres
Tracy Hebert
Michelle McBride

Tickets are available on the players website
$25 - reserved premium seats
$20 - general admission
$15 - Students & Seniors
Happier Valley Comedy presents the Happier Valley Comedy Show Feat. North Coast NYC

October 14 at 8:00 PM
Northampton Center For the Arts (Arts Trust Building)

Join us this October in welcoming our special guest, North Coast, to the Happier Valley Comedy Show!

North Coast is New York City’s premier hip hop improv comedy team. Their explosive performances have been packing comedy venues, universities, and festivals nationwide since 2009. Built around a single suggestion from an audience member, the show’s improvised scenes escalate into full-blown hip-hop songs, facilitated by a live beatboxer. With their seamless melding of comedic timing and freestyle rapping abilities, North Coast frequently blurs the line between comedy show and concert, drawing audiences from the comedy, hip-hop, and theater communities for an experience that has been hailed as “mind-blowing” and “next level” by critics and audiences alike. 

In the second act, Valley favorites The Ha-Ha's are excited to debut their new piece "Still Life," 
in which they create a space and improvise the characters and situations that inhabit that space.
Happier Valley Comedy presents More Improv More Better

October 14 at 10:00 PM
Northampton Center For the Arts (Arts Trust Building)

Open improv jam for everyone and anyone to play and watch improv games, plus a showcase set featuring this month's up-and-coming improv team, BOOP! Improv.

BOOP! Improv creates scenes and stories via the art of long-form improvisational theater. A duo with unique chemistry, they bring their audience on a journey through humor, reality, wit, and a keen depth of characters and stories.

Suggested donation: $3-5. For more info:
a new play by Milan Dragicevich 
with music by Tim Eriksen 

October 19-21 at 7:30 
October 22 at 2pm 

The Shea Theater 
3rd Steet , Turners Falls, MA 

Two sisters gaze across an endless stretch of barren desert at the El Shatt refugee camp in 1943, while a war rages across Europe. In the hollows of southern Appalachia, an idealistic guitar-strumming activist fights to preserve a way of life. On the streets of embattled Belgrade, a hustler struggles to survive in the underground markets of a desperate people. What binds them together? Where is home? When we cross borders, what do we become? This new play with music jumps across time and place, with a multigenerational story of displacement, capricious destiny, and the search for identity.

The Mount Holyoke College Department of Theatre Arts opens is Fall Season with Jonathan Yukich’s Frankenstein, an adaptation of Mary Shelley’s novel. The production is directed by Noah Tuleja and features set design by Vanessa James, lighting design by Lara Dubin, and costumes by Sam Eisenstein-Bond ‘18.

Victor Frankenstein, obsessed with finding the secret to recreating life famously succeeds, but fearing he has overstepped the bounds of science, quickly abandons his creation and the promise to make it a mate. The Creature, betrayed and forsaken, vows to ruthlessly destroy all that his creator loves and cherishes.

Performances: Oct 19, 20, 21 at 7:30pm, Oct 22 at 2:00pm
at the Rooke Theatre on the MHC campus.
Buy Tickets Now at:
For reservations: (413) 538-2406 or email
Reserved tickets must be picked up 1⁄2 hour prior to the performance
Tickets: $8 general | $5 Students and senior citizens

Suitable for ages 10 and up
Full Disclosure Festival:

October 20 - 21, 2017 on Town Common & a variety of spaces all in walking distance of Downtown Amherst. Tickets: $20 for everything at:

Regional artists are commissioned to create work within the theme of our inter-connection with one another and to the earth.

Art includes original dance, theater, sculpture, film, immersive theater, folk opera, music, spoken word, and a woven natural web of connection built on the Common.

Conversations with thought leaders will be offered in nooks and crannies of local businesses including: State Rep Solomon Goldstein-Rose, Alice Nash, Mari CastaƱeda, Terry Jenoure, Salman Hameed, Monte Belmonte, & David Teeple.  
Smith College Department of Theatre presents CREATURE by Heidi Schreck
directed by Isabelle Brown
October 20, 21, 26, 27, 28 at 7:30 PM in Theatre 14
Mendenhall Center for the Performing Arts 
122 Green Street, Northampton, MA


After being pestered by devils for more than half a year, Margery Kempe – new mother, mayor's daughter, and proprietress of a highly profitable beer business – is liberated from her torment by a vision of Jesus Christ in purple robes. 

Visions are hard to come by, even in 1401. Should we trust the new Margery, with her fasting and her weeping and her chastity fixation, or burn her with the other heretics? Can a woman of insatiable appetites just up and audition for sainthood? 

Playwright and OBIE-winning actor Heidi Schreck conjures a collision of contemporary and medieval imaginations: a very funny, a little bit scary new play about faith and its messengers.

$10 General, $5 Students/Seniors, Free for Smith Students
Buy tickets online or call 413-585-3220

Exit 7 Players present The Addams Family - a New Musical Comedy

10/20, 10/21, 10/27, 10/28, 11/3, 11/4 at 8PM; 10/22, 10/29 & 11/5 at 2PM

Exit 7 Players Theatre, 37 Chestnut Street, Ludlow, MA
The Addams Family - America's darkest family, comes to life in this hilarious original musical about love, family, honesty and growing up. The Chicago Sun-Times had this to say about the Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League Award-winning adaptation - "Note to Broadway (and not for the first time): If you want to see how to make a musical really snap into place — how to connect with an audience in that uncanny way that is so crucial for success, how to delineate characters so that we cannot help but cheer for them, and how to turn every production number into a giddy explosion of song and dance — pay a visit..." to the Addams Family Musical.

In the upside-down world of the Addams Family, to be sad is to be happy, to feel pain is to feel joy, and death and suffering are the stuff of their dreams. Nonetheless, this quirky family still has to deal with many of the same challenges faced by any other family, and the spookiest nightmare faced by every family creates the focus Lippa, Brickman, and Elice’s musical: the Addams kids are growing up.

The Addamses have lived by their unique values for hundreds of years and Gomez and Morticia, the patriarch and matriarch of the clan, would be only too happy to continue living that way. Their dark, macabre, beloved daughter Wednesday, however, is now an eighteen year-old young woman who is ready for a life of her own. She has fallen in love with Lucas Beineke, a sweet, smart boy from a normal, respectable Ohio family — the most un-Addams sounding person one could be! And to make matters worse, she has invited the Beinekes to their home for dinner. In one fateful, hilarious night, secrets are disclosed, relationships are tested, and the Addams family must face up to the one horrible thing they’ve managed to avoid for generations: change.

The Saturday October 28 and Sunday October 29 performances will be ASL (American Sign Language) interpreted. For those audience members who will be needing the interpreters they should sit on the left side of the house (section 3) if at all possible.

Happier Valley Comedy presents Happier FAMILY Comedy Show

October 21 at 3:00 PM
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

Let's make your happy family HAPPIER!
Join us at The Happier FAMILY Comedy Show!

Funny for the whole family (and perfect for kids 5-12 and their adults)! Get your family-friendly funnies in this totally interactive, high energy improv comedy show on the third Saturday of every month. 

Our next show is coming up! 
Saturday, October 21st
3-4 pm (doors open at 2:45)
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art,
125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA 01002
Tickets at the door*: $5 Kids (4 years+), $10 Adults, Kids 3 years and under are FREE!
*Attendees do not need to purchase museum entrance. 
**Note: Museum members get a discount for Show tickets.

This month's show will benefit The Hitchcock Center! The Hitchcock Center’s unique programs for children, adults, and schoolteachers foster a greater awareness and understanding of the environment. Using the best practices of environmental education, we help an average of 8,200 people a year to develop the skills, aptitudes, and attitudes needed to care for our planet’s ecological systems and create environmentally sustainable communities. To find out more.

We'll also have facepainting available at the show artfully applied by our good friend, Emma Rose Huse!

For more info on the show click here.
Serious Play Theatre Ensemble presents...
Staged Reading: Love and Information 

Written by experimental British playwright Caryl Churchill
Directed by Sheryl Stoodley

Performances: 8p.m. - Sat., Oct. 21, Sun., Oct. 22, and Mon., Oct. 23

Location: A.P.E. at Window, 126 Main St, Northampton, MA

Tickets: All tickets $18 - Fall fundraising event. Performances appropriate for 14 yrs. and up. Available online. Box office opens at 7:30p.m. at A.P.E. on nights of performance 

Originally produced at the Royal Court Theater in London, experimental British playwright Caryl Churchill's "Love and Information" ingeniously mirrors our age of splintered attention span. Each of the self-contained scenes, often seconds long and caught in mid conversation, deals with the ways we lust for, process, and reject knowledge. The play focuses on individuals trying to connect with, and understand each other in the 21st century. Each segment presents a situation likely to be familiar, and each seems as contemporary as cellphones and as eternal as humanity itself. 

The cast includes Natalie Djondo, Lisa Enzer, Nanette Mendeita, Dan Morbyrne, David Regan, Patrick Ryan, and Linda Tardif. The play is directed by Sheryl Stoodley with Stage Manager Gabe CiFuentes. Many of the cast have previously worked with Serious Play, but included are some new faces of theatre students from Holyoke Community College, where Stoodley is a Theatre professor. 

This play is part of Serious Play's new Perspectives Through Performance initiative, a program designed to set up a cultural exchange between theatre performers in the U.S. and the U.K., particularly those involved with the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Later this season, Serious Play will host Scottish actress and musician Mairi Campbell in her critically acclaimed one-woman performance, "Pulse". "Love and Information" will be the first performance from "across the pond."

On Wednesday, October 25, in collaboration with Passport Theatre, Silverthorne Theater Company will present 
LUNGS, by Duncan Macmillan,
performed by Stephanie Carlson* and Lindel Hart under the direction of Ellen Kaplan. Curtain time is 7 pm in The Wheelhouse at Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center, 289 Main Street, Greenfield.
Seating is limited: tickets are available by calling 413-768-7514 or online at Eventbrite or
The world is getting hotter, there’s unrest overseas—the seas themselves aren’t very calm—and one couple is thinking about having a child. LUNGS is a smart and funny drama that follows a couple through the surprising lifecycle of their relationship as they grapple with questions of family and change, hope, betrayal, happenstance, and the terrible pain that you can only cause the people you love.
 "Duncan Macmillan's distinctive, off-kilter love story is brutally honest, funny, edgy and current. It gives voice to a generation for whom uncertainty is a way of life through two flawed, but deeply human, people who you don't always like but start to feel you might love." The Guardian.
Plans are to move this play from the West End to New York, so this will be the last time it will be possible to see this important play for months or possibly years. Ms Carlson performs with permission of The Theatre Authority, Inc.
This special one-time performance will benefit Silverthorne Theater Company's upcoming community event, Your Voice, Poet - a free public performance/ discussion featuring the play by Haitian playwright Jean Dany Joachim, winner of STC's 2016 Playwrights of Color competition. 
Your Voice, Poet, addresses the question of the function of art in a dysfunctional world, and will be performed at the Bing Arts Center in Springfield on November 25, and at the Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center in Greenfield on November 26. This performance/discussion event is partially supported by MassHumanities. More information about this event.

Pioneer Valley Theatre Companies
Is your theatre company missing? Email me!
Academy of Music Theatre

Arena Civic Theatre

Black Cat Theater

Chester Theatre Company

The Country Players

Eggtooth Productions

Exit 7 Players

Ghost Light Theater

Hampshire Shakespeare Company

Happier Valley Comedy

Ko Theater Works/Ko Festival of Performance

Majestic Theater
New Century Theatre

PaintBox Theatre

Pauline Productions

Real Live Theatre

Red Thread Theater

Serious Play Theatre Ensemble

Silverthorne Theater

Smith College Department of Theatre

St. Michael's Players


Westfield Theatre Group

Wilbraham United Players
Smith College Department of Theatre presents AUDITIONS for Studio Productions

By Lynn Nottage
Directed by Nykole Darby ’19
When a housewife comes to the end of her rope with her abusive husband, she doesn't expect him to spontaneously combust. Now she has a pile of ashes on the floor, and a life to reclaim.

By Harold Pinter
Directed by Micaela Brinsley ‘20
A woman who has been in a coma for thirty years awakes with a mind still that of a sixteen-year-old. She must confront a body which seems to have aged without her prior knowledge or consent.

Auditions: Sunday and Monday, October 15 and 16, 7-10 PM Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre, Mendenhall CPA, Smith College

Callbacks for A KIND OF ALASKA – Tuesday, October 17, 7-10 PM, in Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre. Call backs on for POOF! Wednesday, October 18, 8-10 pm, in Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre

Performances: December 7 and 9 at 7:30 PM; Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre, Mendenhall Center, Smith College

Casting Breakdown: 2 Actors (POOF!) / 3 Actors (A KIND OF ALASKA)

Audition Prep: No preparation necessary. Sides will be provided from the script.


Scripts: Perusal scripts available in Josten Library, Mendenhall Center, Smith College
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