Thursday, January 28, 2021

Pioneer Valley Theatre News January 28, 2021

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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January 28 - February 17, 2021

Howlround just turned 10 years old! (In case you missed it, I share an article from Howlround pretty much every week in the "this week in theatre news" section.) It's an amazing resource full of interesting and insightful writing on theatre. If you haven't checked out their site recently, I recommend it. 

The next issue will include events through February 24. 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
Starlight's Youth Theatre presents Annie Kids
Saturdays 9-10AM | February 20 - April 17
More info and sign up here
$5 per week for your poster and ticket link in top billing!
Email me to reserve your dates.
Click to Access: Pioneer Valley Theatre Google Calendar
Click to Access: Pioneer Valley Theatre Personnel Spreadsheet
from Howlround

The 4 Rs
by Claire K. Redfield

From the article: 

How are you standing on the ground? As I think of my fellow directors, I’m asking that question. As I talk with my collaborators on Zoom, as I walk around my neighborhood, as I lie next to my partner at night. How are you standing on the ground? I wonder: Do you know you’re still standing?

I spent the last three years in an MFA program at Arizona State University, where I focused on directing and trauma-responsive rehearsal practice. I come to trauma work through school but also through my own experiences as a survivor. When I talk about trauma, I’m referring to any experience or set of experiences that leave you feeling overwhelmed, scared, helpless, or deeply unsafe. Statistics show that an estimated 90 percent of the world’s population will be exposed to a traumatic event over the course of their lives, and with the current pandemic I would argue that that number is now even higher. If someone belongs to a historically marginalized group, such as identifying as a Black, Indigenous, person of color (BIPOC), LGBTQ+ member, woman, individual with a disability, or several of these categories together, the statistical likelihood of experiencing trauma only intensifies.

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!
From the New England New Play Alliance:

Virtual Theatre and Podcast

The Firehouse Center for the Arts presents 
19th Annual New Works Festival
January 29-31


Over the past 18 years, more than 200 new works have been performed on the Firehouse stage through our annual Firehouse New Works Festival, which fosters the growth of New England playwrights while showcasing the talent of local and regional actors and directors. Playwrights from across New England submit their 10-minute shorts, one-act, and full-length plays to an independent panel who select the festival’s shows in anonymous readings. Directors and their casts then work with selected playwrights to produce a weekend of original theater.

Friday, 1/29 at 8pm: Full Length Play

by James McLindon

Saturday 1/30 at 8pm: An Evening of Shorts

Pole Position
by Michael Towers

A Missionary Zeal
by Charles Hertz

The Wrong Taxi
by Charlene Donaghy

Tut Tut
by Michael Towers

Respect Your Elders
by Hope Shangle

by Steve Eimert

The Handle
by Scott Sullivan

Sunday, 1/31 at 7pm: One-Act and Shorts

The Rise of Jessie Bates
by Paul Antokolsky

Tickets: $5 single evening, $12 festival pass.

Fresh Ink Theatre presents 
a reading of
Truth or Consequences
by Andrew Siañez-De La O
January 31, 2:00 pm
directed by Jasmine Brooks

Agent Chavez is on her way back to headquarters after losing her partner during a mission gone wrong. Agent Hogan is days away from retiring after twenty five years of service. And thanks to budget cuts, these two agents from the Bureau are going to have to share a dusty motel room in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. But this is no ordinary stopover. As they come to realize the Bureau may have put them directly in harm's way, these two Agents have to grapple with their darkest memories and deepest regrets if they want to survive the demands of the El Dorado Motel. Tickets: free (donation suggested).


tiny_Theatre presents
a reading of scenes from
Tiny Empty Nest
by David Beardsley
Jan. 27 and Feb. 3

With their child at college and the distractions of parenting behind them, it is becoming harder for Ben and Claire Booker to ignore the empty spaces in their relationship. Ben makes a surprising proposal to get them back on track: he wants them to audition for Tiny Empty Nest, a reality television show that chronicles new empty-nesters living together in a community of tiny houses. Claire, who has cultivated skills, interests, and opportunities independent of Ben, is skeptical, but she goes along. Audition day arrives and, with nowhere to hide and a tiny house to build, Ben and Claire search for the emotional stamina they'll need to keep moving forward together. Part one on January 27. Part two on February 3. Tickets: free.


Company One presents
Remaking America: An Inaugural Message to the New Administration
January 26

Each new President pledges to “preserve, protect, and defend,” but which communities are at the front of that line? Company One’s Surge Lab playwrights—Inda Craig-Galván, Francisca Da Silveira, and Idris Goodwin—demand that we ALL move to the front by re-imagining our Better Future for housing, health, and education, along with local community leaders who have been doing the work. Tickets: free, registration required (donation suggested).

The Wilbury Theatre Group presents
The Race
by Mark Binder
now-January 31
directed by Brien Lang

Two job seekers from vastly different backgrounds vie for the same position in a large, faceless corporation. Each reveals uncomfortable truths from their past while dodging land mines from their competition and dealing with an increasingly demanding disembodied interviewer. Neither’s future is certain as the audience becomes an integral part of the selection process. Tickets: $20.


Dorset Theatre Festival's Women Artists Writing Group presents
streaming now

See the annual public presentation by members of #DTFWAW as they share short pieces and works-in-process written in response to the word grace.
Gracefully Yours
by Sharahn LaRue 
How to be Graceful
by Elizabeth M. Kelly
Notes from Isolation: Birthday Flowers
by Nandita Shenoy
by Heidi Armbruster
Grace with a Capital G
by Donna Eis 
by Carolyn Baeumler
a selection from
Dolly's Dream Bimari
by Purva Bedi
Don't be a Karen, Mommy
by Mary Bacon
In the Final Hours
by Mariana Newhard
Beethoven's Dream
by Maggie Diaz Bofill 
by Katie Kreisler
by Laura Gómez
Stream here.


Third Citizen Theatre Companypresents
Digital Dionysia
now-January 26

A ten-week series of new, contemporary short plays inspired by classical Greek theatre and mythology and produced by local creative teams with playwrights from New England and beyond. These plays reintroduce familiar characters and settings in ways that are surprising, hilarious, thought-provoking, and always original. 

The Oracle Cassandra
by Amanda Beveridge
January 26
directed by James Peter Sotis

The Making of Medea's Medea: A Mockumentary Play
by Chas Belov
January 26
directed by Peter Sampieri

Tickets: $5.

On February 12, 13 and 14, the Short & Sweet Festival will finally be launched! Here’s how it will work:
On Friday, February 12, the following plays will be screened, beginning at 7:30 pm. The Group A line-up, all directed by Julian Findlay consists of Choices, by James McLindon (Northampton MA); Canvas, by Andrew Heinrich (San Antonio TX); Interventions, by Greg Lam (Milton MA); Webster’s Bitch, by Jacqueline Bircher (Brooklyn NY); Cell Phone in the Yoga Class, by Michele Markarian (Cambridge MA); A Gift, by Jonathan Prouser (Western MA); Second Look, by Nick Malakhow (Brighton MA); and People Will Talk, by Scott Mullen (Burbank CA).
On Saturday, February 13, the Group B plays, under the direction of Ben Ware, will screen, again beginning at 7:30 pm. The line-up is Jump, by Gina Femia (Brooklyn NY); Indelible, by John Bavoso (Washington DC); Four Daughters, by Ellen Wittlinger (Haydenville MA); Raghead, by Tom Coash (New Haven CT); Family Game Night, by Peter Kennedy (Williamsberg MA); Mishpocha, by Emily Bloch (Easthampton); and A Wake, by Brian Petti (Slate Hill, NY).
Following each night of plays, viewers will be asked to select their Top Four Favorite Plays! Then on Sunday, February 14, the chosen Eight Favorite Plays will be screened again, beginning at 7:30 pm.
Viewers will be able to buy individual tickets for any of the three nights of plays for $15 each, or get a Festival Pass for all three nights for $35! The links to the online screening site are provided once tickets are purchased. Details and links to the ticketing site may be found on the Special Events page at Silverthorne’s web site: 

The Short & Sweet (tiny) New Play Festival is sponsored in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
Starlight's Youth Theatre
Winter Online Acting Classes

Classes run January 9-February 13
Financial Aid is available

We are happy to announce a Winter Term of Zoom classes for January and February on both Saturday mornings and Monday evenings.  Classes include Musical Theatre, Storytelling, Acting for Film, Directing Workshop, Aesop's Fables, and The Jungle Book.


The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative presents two online workshops with the renowned Hollywood producer, literary manager and screenwriter Marilyn R. Atlas, as part of its continuing mission to provide learning opportunities for the film community in Western Massachusetts. Atlas will present “The Importance of Pitching” on Saturday, January 30, from 3PM-5PM. During the latter workshop, some participants will have the opportunity to pitch their film and video projects to Atlas. 

The Pitch class will cover many critical topics including: adapting your pitch to the audience you’re pitching to, mistakes people make when pitching, understanding the market and projects worthy of pitching, and the importance of the “hook.”

Diane Pearlman, Executive Director of BFMC comments, “These seminars are for authors, screenwriters, playwrights, directors, producers or anyone who wants to tell an impactful story. Do you have an idea for the great film or TV series? You don’t need to be in NY or LA to create content these days - you just need the proper tools. So we’re thrilled that Marilyn is bringing her incredible expertise to our community”

Marilyn R Atlas, a Hollywood Talent/Literary Manager and Producer, has long been committed to diversity and portrayal of strong female protagonists. She’s the producer of the HBO Sundance winning film Real Women Have Curves (now in development as a Broadway show) and The Choking Game on Lifetime among other films. Marilyn also produced several plays including the award winning To Gillian on her 37th Birthday. She has spoken at numerous writers’ conferences throughout the US and Europe. She’s currently developing projects based on diverse characters such as the Gary Phillips crime books and the award-winning middle school book series, The Code Busters Club for television, as well as developing a limited series in conjunction with Maten, a Chinese-based production company. Atlas co-authored the  relationship-based, screenwriting guide Dating Your Character (Stairway Press). 

Tickets are $55.00 for one workshop. Student tickets are available at $45.00. Tickets for both workshops are available through EventBrite.

The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) is a creative economic engine that supports production and workforce development in Western Massachusetts. BFMC develops educational and workforce enrichment courses, offers networking events for industry professionals, acts as a resource for visiting productions, creates jobs within our communities in the film industry and provides an on line production guide and locations database as a resource for filmmakers. BFMC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. For details:

Happiness Meditation: Recharge, Reconnect, & Relax
January 29th at 12:00 PM
More info.

Recharge during your lunch hour in this guided happiness-focused meditation that will (hopefully!) leave you feeling uplifted, joyful, and energized. This is part of the free Lunch & Laugh series of weekly online workshops, where individual workshops give you a bite-sized taste of one specific Happiness Habit from "The 30-Day Happiness Experiment Program" using playful learning exercises and engaging group connection.

Introducing our Completely Ridiculous Winter Workshop Series!

Tuesday nights from 6-8pm EST, starting February 2nd.
6 weeks. $295.
Open to 12 students.

Études are a rehearsal tool developed from Stanislavski’s final experiments. This course seeks to foster a dynamic interaction between actor and text. Through a series of exploratory improvisations called études, actors unpack and personalize the given circumstances — following their own impulses to achieve profound and thrillingly original interpretations. The course focuses on how to activate “bookwork” through imagination, awareness, and sense of spontaneous play. The method gives students practical tools to pull even the most intimidating texts off their pedestals and make them their own. Students will gain confidence in the legitimacy of their own impulses, having followed their interpretations of text and character to the furthest possible point.

Sign up.

Acceptance: Practice Through Improv
February 5th at 12:00 PM
More info.

Practice the wellness mindset of "Acceptance" through a simple and silly improv game that will have you learning through laughter. This is part of the free Lunch & Laugh series of weekly online workshops, where individual workshops give you a bite-sized taste of one specific Happiness Habit from "The 30-Day Happiness Experiment Program" using playful learning exercises and engaging group connection.
Happier Valley Comedy presents Establishing A Resilience Building Happiness Practice

February 6 at 11:00 AM

Like the flight attendants say, "Please put on your own oxygen mask before attending to others." How’s your energy tank these days? If you just sighed with fatigue or guffawed incredulously, this fun and informative remote interactive online presentation might be just what you need! Professional improv comedian and happiness coach Pam Victor invites you on an experiential exploration of happiness and resilience building habits to enhance self-care practices. Using the wonders of Zoom, you’ll gain 11 simple but profound practices to bring more self-care, gratitude, and play into your daily life. By the end of our time together, you will have a full stress-relieving toolbox to develop your own customized daily happiness self-care practice.

More information.

Introducing our Completely Ridiculous Winter Workshop Series!
Sunday nights from 6-8pm, EST. Starting February 7th.
​6 weeks. $295.
Open to 10 students.

This workshop is designed to demonstrate to comedians of all kinds how their wayward point-of-view can help make them uniquely dynamic as actors. The workshop will also demonstrate to acting students how cultivating a comedy skill-set adds delight and ease to their process, and provides a pathway to more personal and electric performances in all genres and mediums.

While this class is geared towards comics who are auditioning; working on a specific project; getting into writing for the screen or stage; or simply want to become all-around bolder, more sensitive and dynamic performers - all are welcome.

Sign up. 

Positivity Practices Through Improv
February 12th at 12:00 PM
More info.

Join happiness coach Pam Victor in an experiential exploration of key Happiness Habits to bring positivity, well-being, and ease to your life. This is part of the free Lunch & Laugh series of weekly online workshops, where individual workshops give you a bite-sized taste of one specific Happiness Habit from "The 30-Day Happiness Experiment Program" using playful learning exercises and engaging group connection.
Intentional Connection Through Improv
February 19th at 12:00 PM
More info.

Intentional connection is profoundly necessary for health and happiness. This super-fun improv game has you connecting through laughter! This is part of the free Lunch & Laugh series of weekly online workshops, where individual workshops give you a bite-sized taste of one specific Happiness Habit from "The 30-Day Happiness Experiment Program" using playful learning exercises and engaging group connection.
Starlight's Youth Theatre presents Spring 2021 Annie Kids sign up
Saturdays 9-10AM from 2/20/21 -4/17/2021

This shorter children's version of Annie is the perfect musical that is sure to bring a smile as we join together to sing some favorites.  Classes will be virtual with a streaming at the end. Soloist may rehearse until 10:30.

Fee is $160
Financial aid is available
Self-Care & Happiness Habits: Intro to the Happiness Experiment
February 26th at 12:00 PM
More info.

Explore some simple yet profoundly nourishing self-care daily habits to bring some extra joy and ease into your winter ... and the seasons to follow! This is part of the free Lunch & Laugh series of weekly online workshops, where individual workshops give you a bite-sized taste of one specific Happiness Habit from "The 30-Day Happiness Experiment Program" using playful learning exercises and engaging group connection.

Northampton Community Making Space

Where:  33 Hawley - Eli’s room

When: Third Saturday’s of the Month from 4-7
Feb 27

Who: Our Community

Cost:  Free - there will be a  voluntary (NOT required) collection jar to help pay for the space rental

What:  Northampton Community Making Space

As we continue to figure out how to be artists in this time, I would like to offer a space for us to make in a community, while still paying attention to the care that we need to take of ourselves and others in the times of COVID 19.  Please join us at 33 Hawley on the third Saturday of the month from 4-7 in Eli’s Room for community making.   All experience levels are welcome. 

Who is a maker?  A maker is a writer, a painter, a mover, a quilter, a weaver, a poet, a photographer, a digital artist, a filmmaker, a woodworker, a stained glass artist, a performer, a musician, a potter, a philosopher, an activist - so many things that it defies definition.  A maker is someone who looks around them and asks of themselves and others, “what can this idea become?” A maker is in continuous evolution. 

We will each have a 6’ space. You will be provided a table, a chair or easy chair, a dedicated power strip, and a drop cloth. You will need to bring your own materials and tools.  Please bring projects that are appropriate for working on in a group setting.  There will be three foot aisles between each space, and masks will be required at all times.  

The space will accommodate 10 people at one time.  You may stay for the full three hours, or just drop in for an hour or so.  In order to organize our safe attendance, please follow this link to sign up for a time.  Please indicate your interest and the time that you would like to attend by following the link and signing up for a slot.

I hope you are able to join us for making in community   See you soon!

Submit your workshop, class, audition, performance, or any other theatre opportunity here!
Pioneer Valley Theatre Companies
Academy of Music Theatre

Arena Civic Theatre

Black Cat Theater

Chester Theatre Company


Cold Spring Community Theatre

Completely Ridiculous Productions

Drama Studio

Double Edge Theatre

Eggtooth Productions

Exit 7 Players

Franklin County Youth Theater

Ghost Light Theater

Greenfield Community College's Theater Department

Hampshire Shakespeare Company

Happier Valley Comedy

Hawks and Reed Performing Arts Center

Ja'Duke Center for the Performing Arts

K and E Theater Group

Ko Theater Works/Ko Festival of Performance

Majestic Theater

New Century Theatre

No Theater
Northampton Community Arts Trust

Northampton Playwrights Lab

PaintBox Theatre


Pauline Productions

Real Live Theatre

Red Thread Theater

Royal Frog Ballet

Serious Play Theatre Ensemble

Shakespeare Stage

Shea Theater Arts Center

Silverthorne Theater

Smith College Department of Theatre

St. Michael's Players

Starlight's Youth Theatre, Inc.

Strident Theatre


Turbulent Times Theater

UMass Department of Theater

UMass Theatre Guild

Valley Light Opera

Westfield Theatre Group

Wilbraham United Players
Want to know even more about events in the Pioneer Valley and beyond,
including reviews, interviews, and previews?
Pioneer Valley Theatre Google Calendar
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