I go into tech this weekend for Sweeney Todd - and you can catch it next Friday and Sunday at the Academy of Music. What are you working on currently? Is it in the newsletter?
No details yet, but pencil February 9 3-5 pm into your calendar for a conversation about the future of the performing arts in the valley - I'll announce more details via my Facebook page soon - and in next week's newsletter.
The next issue will include events through February 13. Submit upcoming events via the link below or by emailing me before Tuesday at midnight. Any questions, comments or feedback? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
With what shall we arm ourselves for the dark? I borrow the question from Daniel Alexander Jones, and I ask it a lot lately. Daniel has been asking it, maybe, since he first noticed night. He poses it to us now, in our ever-hateful American moment, with increased urgency and focus. The question drives his most recent concert/theatre performance, Black Light, a brief title thick with contradiction and meaning, my favorite being radiant blackness.
Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me! email@example.com
Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater presents Peter Pan Thursday, January 17 at 7:30 pm; Friday, January 18 at 7:30 pm; Saturday, January 19 at 1:00 pm (matinee); Saturday, January 19 at 7:30 pm; Sunday, January 20 at 1:00 pm (matinee)
Bowker Auditorium, Stockbridge Hall, UMass
This January, come with us where dreams are born and time is never planned! PETER PAN arrives on the Bowker Auditorium stage set in a newly imagined Neverland, with the illustrious Peter and his pack of lost boys, the ingenious Tiger and her runaways, surly pirates of all ages, the Darling family, a truly amazing Crocodile, and of course the nefarious Captain Hook– all with an extra special helping of fairy dust! PETER PAN comes to Bowker Auditorium at UMass, Amherst, MA • January 10-13 and 17-20, 2019. This full-scale, live production brings lavish sets and costumes, a full live orchestra, and a remarkable cast together in a gorgeous singing, dancing extravaganza! See www.alsct.org for tickets and more info, or call 413-259-3065.
West Springfield's Majestic Theater presents “The Mountaintop,” a historical drama by Katori Hall
January 17 through February 10
The play is set entirely in Room 306 of the Lorraine Motel, now the National Civil Rights Museum, in Memphis, Tennessee. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., having just delivered his “I've Been to the Mountaintop” speech on behalf of the sanitation workers of Memphis, retires to the motel to prepare for another long day of campaigning. Here he encounters Camae, a beautiful maid. After some initial superficial exchanges, the pair begin a deep discussion about Dr. King's hopes and fears. “The Mountaintop” offers audiences a different side of Martin Luther King, Jr.; a man who despite his flaws remains an inspiration.
According to the Majestic's Producing Director Danny Eaton, “Toward the end of the play, Dr. King says, 'I am just a man. I am just a man.' He adds that all he wanted was to be a minister at a small church, and he wonders who will carry the baton after he's gone. Katori Hall has gifted us with a remarkable portrait of both the man as well as the icon. And, of course, the message is as relevant today as it ever was.”
“The Mountaintop” premiered in London where it won several theater awards and critical acclaim prior to its Broadway run in 2011. It has since been produced in leading American cities including Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago and Palo Alto, in addition to being staged in South Africa, New Zealand and the Netherlands.
Jamil Mangan will portray Dr. King, and Lynnette R. Freeman will play Camae. Gilbert McCauley will direct the play, with Eaton serving as producing director. Set designer is Josiah Durham, and Dawn McKay is costume designer. Dan Rist is lighting designer and Stephen Petit is production stage manager.
Tickets for these shows range from $24-$34 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. Subscriptions are still being accepted for the five Season shows.
Happier Valley Comedy presents The Happier Family Comedy Show January 19 at 3:00 PM
Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA
Monthly family-friendly improv comedy show, great for 5-12 year olds and their adults. It's funny for the whole family! Saturday, January 19th at 3pm at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art (125 W Bay Rd., Amherst). Tickets at the door: $10/Adults, $5/Kids, Free/4 yrs and under (Reduced admission for museum members). For more info: www.happiervalley.com.
Happier Valley Comedy Presents: Not In Charge January 19 at 7:00 PM
Happier Valley Comedy Theater, 1 Mill Rd, Hadley, MA
Join the talented new group Not In Charge for a polished, fast-paced improv show inspired by the improvisers' real life stories! Saturday, January 19th at 7pm at the new Happier Valley Comedy Theater (1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley, on rte.9). And stick around after for the 9pm showcase and open improv jam! Tickets: $10 online and at the door. For more info: www.happiervalley.com.
The Academy of Music Theatre presents Shut UP, Emily Dickinson! by Tanya O'Debra Saturday, January 19 @ 7:30pm
Academy of Music Theatre, Northampton
Emily Dickinson: poet, recluse, a**h@le.
Loosely based on the Master Letters, Shut UP, Emily Dickinson! by Tanya O'Debra is a pseudo-historical, quasi-biographical, hysterically existential, sadomasochistic psycho-romance about America’s most brilliant and annoying poetess. Holed up for all eternity in the bedroom of our minds, the “woman in white” stretches into a projection screen for truths, half-truths, truthiness, and truth-less-ness. She’s whatever you want her to be and nothing you imagined. Emily Dickinson is the definition of a difficult woman. *This play includes adult language.
Written by Tanya O’Debra
Original Music by Andrew Moreyellow
Directed by Sara Wolkowitz
Featuring Gregg Bellon
“There can be no doubting O’Debra’s talent: she has a vocal arsenal that puts Saturday Night Live’s Kristin Wiig to shame.” – NY Press
Panopera presents SWEENEY TODD, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Friday, January 25 at 7:30 PM and Sunday, January 27 at 2:00 PM
Academy of Music Theatre, Northampton
2019 marks the 40th Anniversary of Sondheim’s masterpiece, Sweeney Todd. Winner of Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Book and Best Score, the work has been equally at home in the world’s opera houses. In keeping with this tradition, Panopera will present Sweeney Todd with its full, original orchestration and a cast of singing actors also equally at home on the musical and operatic stage.
Josie's Magical Flute w/Laura Patrick, and Not in Charge
January 25 at 7:30 PM
The Shea Theater, Turners Falls, MA
Josie's Magical Flute, the Shea's in-house improv comedy troupe, returns for another hilarious show. With guest star Laura Patrick, of The Ha-Ha's! And Not In Charge, the Valley's new favorite (their shows at Happier Valley Comedy routinely sell out). Long and short form improv comedy from some of the Valley's best!
Happier Valley Comedy Presents The Happier Valley World Open Cup Grand Prix Series Derby Bowl Championship! January 26 at 7:00 PM
Happier Valley Comedy Theater, 1 Mill Rd, Hadley, MA
In this brand new, competitive comedy show, two teams of improvisers face off through scenes and games, scored by an audience panel of judges on a wide variety of completely ridiculous criteria, to see who can win the ultimate prize: an old trophy we found in someone's attic. Saturday, January 26th at 7pm at the new Happier Valley Comedy Theater (1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley, on rte.9). And stick around after for the 9pm showcase and open improv jam! Tickets: $13 online and at the door. For more info: www.happiervalley.com.
AUDITIONS & OPPORTUNITIES
Silverthorne Theater Company presents Auditions for TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS January 18 at 7:00 PM, January 19 1-4 PM
Hawks & Reed PAC, 289 Main Street, Greenfield
• Auditioners should prepare a one to two minute monologue
• Please bring a current resume and headshot, or send electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org when making your appointment
• Equity & non-Equity; all roles paid
• All types & ethnicities welcome
TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS Performance dates: 4/25, 26, 27, 28, 5/2, 3, 4
by Constance Congdon. Director: Yagil Eliraz
Cathy McKissick, female, early thirties, recently divorced & returning to her Midwest roots to find her parents not aging well.
Eric (her son or daughter), 15 – male or female; furious to be dragged away from life in the Big City
Jim McKissick (her father) - male, late fifties; confused, suffering from symptoms of Alzheimers' disease
Evelyn McKissick (her mother) - female, early fifties; unable to deal with her husband's changed behavior
Judy - female, early thirties; Cathy's best friend
Jerry - male, early thirties; quirky but kind
Actor #7 - male OR female, forties (same as with Eric); multiple parts
All actors also play Aliens from time to time
Life is not organized around a coherent narrative, despite how much we would like it to be. Life can be messy, jumpy, nonlinear, fragmentary and discordant, and we might find ourselves desperately trying to make sense out of it. “Tales of the Lost Formicans” reflects this messiness and the effort to make sense of it, both in its content and in its form.
This witty and passionate play explores the story of a man with Alzheimer's and at the same time turns into “a travel guide to Middle America conducted by aliens from outer space.” The play has a wonderful comic sensibility while at the same time addressing society's collective nervous breakdown.
Black Cat Theater CALL FOR SET CHIEF (South Hadley, MA) Black Cat Theater, Inc is seeking letters of interest and
resumes for the position of Set Chief for their Spring production of Blithe Spirit.
Set Chief will work with the Director’s design and be the point person
responsible for the construction of the set.Email letter of interest and resume to
email@example.com by February 1.
Sex and Power Looking for Lighting Designer and Stage Manager!
Performances will be in early spring at the Northampton Arts Trust. Small stipend available.
Actor, dancer, interfaith minister Joanna Rush girlsplains the complexities of Sex and Power in our culture. Enduring date rape and gang rape in real life she went on to a career in movies and on stage playing various species of seductress, which, by the way, exposed her to misogyny as practiced internationally throughout history. Covering ground that ranges from evolutionary biology to Greek mythology, the invention of masculinity, our socio-economic systems, and anecdotes from her own acting career, she provides insights that can help us heal today’s sorry state of sexual affairs. Rush’s creative, nontraditional outlook offers hope and a road map for how we can progress and ride the #MeToo movement into a healthier sexual landscape for all.
Phantom Sheep Productions in association with J-ART presents
LaughCrafters: Comedy Improv Classes Winter Session (Feb-Mar)
J-ART with Phantom Sheep Productions is proud to offer their next session of Comedy Improv classes!
6 Weeks, Mondays 7-9PM Starting February 4th
Springfield Jewish Community Center
Open to the general public!
Adults & Teens 15+
Focusing on finding the funny, quick thinking, building scenes, creating characters, trusting yourself, and unleashing your talent through the power of collaboration!
Using short form theater games and exercises, each week is taught in a very fun, encouraging, and constructive atmosphere.
All levels welcome and challenged at own pace.
Tuition for entire session:
$86, General Public (discounts available for JCC members and previous students)
413-739-4715 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more info and to sign up! Facebook event.
Phantom Sheep has been a proud partner of the Springfield JCC since 2014 offering arts education for all ages including puppetry, acting, and improvisation. More information about the troupe is available at www.phantomsheep.com or fb.com/phntmsheep
Upcoming Training Programs at Double Edge Theatre
Double Edge Theatre was founded by Stacy Klein to research the role of actors’ training in the development of performance creation. Training is the heart and vitality of Double Edge’s creative process. Since 1982, when it was first developed by Klein based on her work with Rena Mirecka, Grotowski’s founding actor, it has grown to include work with large objects, developed by Klein and David Flaxman from 1985, and then outdoor work and spectacle developed with Carlos Uriona since 1996. Since 2011 Matthew Glassman has been leading the development of training at Double Edge. The unique, holistic methodology engages the actor’s full potential – physical, vocal, emotional, and imaginative – to drive individual exploration, ensemble collaboration, and performance creation.