Thursday, July 8, 2021

Pioneer Valley Theatre News July 8, 2021

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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July 8 - 28, 2021

There may be a few spots left in Juanita Rockwell's workshop this weekend - take a look at the KoFest website to find out - and while you are there, book your tickets for their summer performances! The Magic City Massacre is available on demand through July 18, and Moving Water starts the weekend following - live for four performances, then virtual the weekend after. 

Summer theatre reopenings in the Advocate - online and in print! - this week. Read it here.

The next issue will include events from July 15 through August 4. 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
Ko Festival of Performance & Serious Play Theatre Ensemble present
LIVE July 22-25, VIRTUAL July 30-August 1 Tickets Available
Ko Festival Workshop: Transforming Your Writing by Resting Your Mind
July 10-11 / Level 2: July 17-18 More Info and Register 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

And It Feels Good The Responsibility of Theatre, and the Imagining of a World Without Oppression
by Dane Figueroa Edidi

From the article: 

Before theatre was thought of as a commercial machine, before the great theatrical amphitheaters of Greece, there were the storytelling traditions of Africa that demonstrated the direct connection between art and spirituality. These traditions also demonstrated the ways in which artists, being holders of the spiritual heart of the community, were often taken care of and revered.

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!
Local playwright and long-time Silverthorne Theater company member Steve Henderson has penned a truly unique play, Fourteen Wedding Dresses, for the third second of STC’s Theater Thursday new play reading series on Thursday, July 15. Under the direction of Keith Langsdale, the reading will be performed live at 7:30 pm in the LAVA Center at 324 Main Street, Greenfield.
The reading is free and open to the public, and will be followed by a discussion with the playwright. It will be streamed live on Silverthorne’s YouTube channel as well, and remote viewers will be able to join a Zoom session following the reading to give feedback. Full details are available at
Jimmy and Vivian are frightened teenagers running away from their small town home in Kentucky to get married.  They fear not only for themselves but for their younger siblings Missy and Henry. They offer the best advice they can on how to stay safe and promise to return in a few years. But nothing goes as planned. Decades pass. Henry and Missy narrow their lives into a strange and heartbreaking cycle until the arrival of a young visitor exposes secrets and lies that rip their desperate routine to rags and tatters.
A strong cast will read the varied roles: Missy will be played by Cate Damon; Rand Foerster will read the role of Henry. Samantha Choquette will play Young Vivian, with Jimmy Murphy reading Jimmy.    Kimberly Salditt-Poulin will play the adult Vivian, and Linda Tardif reads the role of Gracie, grand-niece to Henry and Missy. Director Keith Langsdale most recently filmed his solo performance in The Tattooed Man Tells All for Silverthorne during 2020, and directed our 2019 production of The Diary of Anne Frank.
Henderson is well-known in the Valley and beyond as an actor and playwright, and as author of Senior Theater, a comprehensive approach to producing theater by, for and with seniors. He co-wrote Silverthorne’s 2018 production of White, Black & Blue, and has had  another play in the Theater Thursday series, Sandwich, in 2019. Silverthorne produced his Jerry and Ed in 2015. The Kentucky setting for Fourteen Wedding Dresses is influenced by visits to his brother who has lived there since the seventies.   
An integral part of Silverthorne Theater Company’s mission is to promote the development of new work, especially by Western Massachusetts and New England playwrights. Theater Thursdays is supported in part by a grant from the Greenfield, Bernardston, Buckland, Conway, Deerfield, Northfield, and Shelburne Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.
Theater Thursdays 2021 is a series of free rehearsed readings of new, or new to us plays, begun in 2019. All are followed by audience discussions. The purpose of the readings is to give a platform for new work to be heard, and when possible, to be able to give playwrights direct audience feedback.  It also gives Silverthorne a look at plays that we might consider for full production in future seasons. Complete information for each reading may be found at

Serious Play Theatre Ensemble and Ko Festival of Performance present
In the face of rising sea levels, a new devised theatre piece about climate change, & how water fragility shapes our human interactions…

LIVE: July 22-25, Thurs.– Sat. at 8pm, Sun. at 4pm with a talkback  
Workroom Theatre | APE@Hawley | Arts Trust | 33 Hawley St., Northampton  

WEB: July 30–Aug 1, Fri. & Sat. at 8pm, Sun. at 4pm with talkbacks
via online through Ko Festival of Performance
Multi-camera recording by Northampton Open Media 


a 2-year collaboration by Serious Play Theatre Ensemble
 written by Eric Henry Sanders
 direction: Sheryl Stoodley
 original music: Jonny Rodgers
 set & video design: Robin Doty
 lighting design Sabrina Hamilton
 with actors: Kermit Dunkelberg, Ximena Salmerón, Will Swyers

Questions: or 413-588-7439
And check out the new Serious Play website:

What better way to celebrate the return of live theater than with music? In its first major post-pandemic production, Silverthorne Theater Company presents A Broadway Cabaret, onstage August 6-8 in The Perch at Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center in downtown Greenfield. Nine singer/actors will perform tunes from Broadway’s Golden Age shows – solos and ensemble numbers presented for audiences seated at cabaret tables arranged for maximum comfort and following all health guidelines.

Performances are at 7:30 pm on Friday, August 6 and Saturday, August 7, with a matinee on Sunday, August 8 at 3 pm at Hawks & Reed PAC, 289 Main Street, Greenfield. General admission or reserved stage-side table seating tickets may be purchased at (  A Broadway Cabaret is a fundraiser for Silverthorne which, like all other live theaters, saw drastically reduced revenues during the COVID-19 shutdown in 2020. Details at
In recognition of their extraordinary service provided to the community during the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of tickets for each performance have been donated to local health care workers.
Veteran Silverthorne director John Reese (Greenfield) is staging the show, with Ben Ware (Greenfield) as Music Director. The ensemble of ten featured singers includes Kyle Boatwright (Amherst), David Cavallin (Easthampton), Thom Griffin (Colrain), Elysse Link (Amherst), Moe McElligott (Northampton), Larry Picard (Northampton), Rich Vaden (Holyoke), Jake Venet (Amherst), and Carol Wrobleski (Florence). Joan Haley(Conway) is Producer for the show, with Robby Moore (Leyden) as Stage Manager and John Iverson (Bernardston) as Technical Director.
To ensure the comfort of audience members, as pandemic restrictions have been lifted, precautions will be taken during the performances. All cast and crew members have been fully vaccinated, and we will provide masks if any patrons request them. Refreshments will be available throughout the show at the Hawks & Reed bar in The Perch.  “It is our fondest hope that the joy of live entertainment will enable all to thoroughly appreciate being back together again!” said Producer Joan Haley.
Though Silverthorne Theater managed to continue working during the COVID-19 shutdown with several well-received virtual productions, the normal sources of revenue to cover the expense of maintaining personnel and office space was drastically reduced. The proceeds from this fundraiser will go directly to ensuring the start-up of our 2021-22 season can proceed as planned.

Ko Festival of Performance streams last summer’s Zoom presentation of "The Magic City Massacre” on demand through July 18th.

With a cast of 14, Deletta Gillespie’s play tells the story of one of the most prosperous black communities in the history of the United States, how Tulsa came to be the site of the worst incidence of civil unrest second only to the Civil War, and why almost one-hundred years later, most Americans still don’t know about it. Post show panel discussion features Darly Davis, an African-American man known for his efforts to convince Klu Klux Klansment to leave and denounce the KKK.

Information and sliding scale tickets are available at

Theater Between Addresses
Plague Wedding
Performances are July 9 & 10, 7:30 pm est
Particiaptory Livestream via Youtube

Plague Wedding, by Abigail Weaver, is a spectacle of song, drama and survival. Performing two nights ONLY via participatory livestream on YouTube: July 9th & 10th at 7:30 PM EST.
The piece runs approximately 45 minutes, and we invite your participation via the chat throughout.
Director - Ezekiel Baskin
Stage Manager - Eva Shannon-Dabek
Director of Photography - Liz Walber
Costume Designer - Nancy Clay Gregory
Lighting Designer - Achaetey Kabal
Set Designer - Alan Schneider
Dramaturg - Zeydi Gold-Shapiro
Publicist - Jenine Jacinto
Starring Syl Simmons, Aria Acevedo, Stephen Fruchtman, and Nancy Clay Gregory
Featuring the musical talents of Rachel Leader, Rebecca Mac, Ariel Shapiro, and Mattias Kaufmann
Produced with the generous support of the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Northampton Arts Council, South Hadley Local Cultural Council, Amherst Local Cultural Council, Hadley Local Cultural Council, and Eggtooth Productions.

Facebook event.
The stream will be available for free on our Youtube Channel, live at 7:30 EST on 7/09 and 7/10. 
From the New England New Play Alliance:

Virtual Theatre
and Audio Plays


Theater Between Addresses presents
Plague Wedding

by Abigail Weaver
July 9 and 10
directed by Ezekiel Baskin

A centuries-old Ashkenazi folk tradition gets a doomsday reboot in 2020 Western Mass, courtesy of a smooth talking local talk-show host, a wannabe jester, and a very unhappy bride and groom. Link to stream on Friday and Saturday: free.

Cape Cod Theatre Project presents
Tiny Father

by Mike Lew
July 8 and 10
directed by 
Moritz von Stuelpnagel


A slice-of-life comedy about parenthood: Daniel’s “friends with benefits” relationship comes to a screeching halt when he suddenly finds himself the new father to a months-premature baby. His guide in the strange purgatory of hospital living is a grizzled oversharing nurse named Caroline. Tickets: $25.


Silverthorne Theater brings back the days of radio drama with its production of Dawn King’s haunting play, Foxfinder. A fundraiser for the theater, the show will be broadcast one time only at 7:30 pm on Saturday, July 24, on the Company’s YouTube channel. Listeners will be sent the link to the special broadcast with their donation of any size. Details can be found on the Silverthorne website at
Veteran director Ellen Kaplan directs an all-star cast of actors, including Frank Aronson, Jarice Hanson, Stephanie Carlson and Kevin Tracy as they bring the futurist tale to life. Cate Boram is sound designer, and Sophia Pichanick stage manages the production. All are donating their services in the interest of assisting Silverthorne as the theater recovers from the past year of shuttered venues.
Foxfinder is a play of suspense, a thriller, a story of power, zealotry and self-denial, that puts a sinister shadow on our very near future.  It is a study in power, in suppressed sexuality, in a fascist mindset manifested in a young boy sent on a mission to force compliance, deny feelings, and – to eradicate foxes, which we cannot see but which are everywhere. 
Originally set in rural England, Kaplan has moved the action to the equally appropriate American farm country where at some future time, climate change has severely impacted the profitability of the farmers. Government regulations and a carefully orchestrated fear-mongering campaign stretch their already taut emotions to the breaking point.
Though Silverthorne Theater managed to continue working during the COVID-19 shutdown with several well-received virtual productions, the normal sources of revenue to cover the expense of maintaining personnel and office space was drastically reduced. The proceeds from this fundraiser will go directly to ensuring the start-up of our 2021-22 season can proceed as planned.
Serious Play Theatre Ensemble and Ko Festival of Performance present
In the face of rising sea levels, a new devised theatre piece about climate change, & how water fragility shapes our human interactions…

WEB: July 30–Aug 1, Fri. & Sat. at 8pm, Sun. at 4pm with talkbacks
via online through Ko Festival of Performance
Multi-camera recording by Northampton Open Media 


a 2-year collaboration by Serious Play Theatre Ensemble
 written by Eric Henry Sanders
 direction: Sheryl Stoodley
 original music: Jonny Rodgers
 set & video design: Robin Doty
 lighting design Sabrina Hamilton
 with actors: Kermit Dunkelberg, Ximena Salmerón, Will Swyers

Questions: or 413-588-7439
And check out the new Serious Play website:
Auditions for both Equity and non-Equity performers for roles in the upcoming 2021-2022 Season will be held in July according to Producing Director Danny Eaton.  This will be the 24th Season of performances since the Majestic was re-opened for live theater in March 1997.
Auditions will be held on the following dates:
Wednesday, July 21 – 6:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Thursday, July 22 – 6:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Friday, July 23 – 6:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 24 – 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Non-Equity performers will need to schedule their in-person auditions at the Majestic during those times.  To book an audition time, performers must call the theater at (413) 747-7797.
Equity performers are required to audition via video submission to be sent to by July 15.  For more information about the video submission, please visit  Callbacks will be conducted in-person at the theater.
Actors will be auditioned for parts in the following productions: “Don’t Dress for Dinner” (comedy) which runs October 28 – December 5, 2021, “Betty & The Patch” (contemporary comedy/drama) which runs January 6 – February 13, 2022, and “Blithe Spirit” (comedy) which runs February 24 – April 3, 2022.
Non-Equity performers new to the Majestic should prepare a brief monologue of their choice, and bring a picture and resume.  They will also be asked to read from prepared script selections. 
People auditioning and performing at the Majestic must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.  
The Majestic endured a temporary closing beginning in March 2020 in response to the pandemic.  The theater will re-open on August 7 and present the remaining dates of “The Pitch,” the drama that was mid-run when the theater closed. 
Silverthorne Theater Company, Greenfield, MA, is seeking a stage manager for their fall 2021 production, Charles Ludlam's The Mystery of Irma Vep - the classic quick-change parody of Gothic horror and monster movies, directed by Chris Rohmann.
  • Rehearsals begin the last week of August - mostly three rehearsals per week until late September - opening on October 1st for three weekends at the Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center in Greenfield. 
  • Responsibilities include facilitating rehearsals and production meetings; keeping book; maintaining schedules, contact lists & other materials; maintaining communications among cast and crew; and overseeing tech rehearsals and performances.
  • There is a stipend of $750 for the position.
Contact Chris with interest and/or or 413-532-5321.
CitySpace requests your thoughts - before July 10!

Are you a performer, musician, event maker, local arts organization affiliate, or Western Massachusetts community member? CitySpace seeks your feedback about the first-floor performance and event space in Easthampton's Old Town Hall. We are looking to better understand your needs to create successful events and performances. 

Take the Quick Survey
The Theater Project, inc., dba Majestic Theater, located in West Springfield, Massachusetts is seeking an immediate hire for a Technical Director / Carpenter.

The Majestic is a year-round 229 seat professional theater operating under and SPT6 contract with Actors Equity Association. We produce a five play subscription season September to June, in July and August a three production Children’s Theater, and musical concerts over the Summer. More at:

This is a full time position which requires a number of years of hands-on experience in live theater and a skill set that includes carpentry, welding, and rigging. The Technical Director should also be versed in both stage lighting and sound design. He/She is responsible for maintaining the scene shop in good working order with a focus always on safety. Additionally, from time to time, there may be repair and/or maintenance projects at the theater itself for which the TD is responsible.

This is a full-time year round position with a salary of $40,040 and may include benefits.
To apply, please send an email telling us of your interest and why you think you’d best fit this position. Please also include your professional resume.

eMail to:
Danny Eaton, Producing Director
131 Elm Street
West Springfield, MA 01089
a meditation and writing workshop with JUANITA ROCKWELL
JULY 10 - 11, 1pm - 4pm EST
Whether we write for our own pleasure or for others, to be read on the page or to be spoken aloud, we want our writing to reflect our experience of the world. But our habitual thinking and the ways we tell these stories become a kind of spell of doing, of busy-ness; a spell that binds us, separates us from others, and limits our authentic expression. If we release this imprint of Doing, what might happen if we can rest in the stillness, silence and spaciousness of our Being?

In this two-day, small group workshop, you will learn practices that will ...

a meditation and writing workshop with JUANITA ROCKWELL
JULY 17 - 18, 1pm - 4pm EST
This workshop provides opportunities to deepen the work begun in Transforming Your Writing by Resting your Mind,

Phantom Sheep Productions
LaughCrafters: Connections
July 19 at 7:00 PM

Come play short-form improv games with us in a fun casual online environment! All levels welcome! Keep your brains in shape, meet awesome people, laugh, and stay connected!
Although this is not a class, we will take a moment to go over the basics of each game so everyone can participate.

Fee: Free/Pay what you can.
(Suggested donation: $5)

Facebook event

Phantom Sheep Productions is also hosting a teen improv workshop on July 21st, and an in person Jam at Unity House Players on July 26th
West Springfield Public Library
Teen improv workshop
July 21 at 3pm

Enjoy a free online workshop with the Phantom Sheep Players, as they lead a series of hilarious games!
You’ll be part of the action creating comedy yourself learning industry secrets in Improvisation!
Provided by the West Springfield Library
Sponsored by Friends of the Library
Register online at
to reserve your spot today!

Phantom Sheep Productions is also hosting an online Improv Jam for adults on July 19th, and an in-person jam At Unity House Players on July 26th.
Hampshire Shakespeare Company
Educational Theater Workshop
August 2-6 at 9:00 AM
Virtual & Williston School

In this half day program students will learn age-appropriate storytelling and performance skills from home for the first few days, and work together to present on Friday. Come practice acting, public speaking, empathy, creative writing, prop making, costume designing, resiliency, and play (just to name a few!) with us.

More info.
Hampshire Shakespeare Company presents
Young Company Two Day Workshop
August 12 and 13, 10 am - 4pm
Williston Northampton School

Two day theater lab exploring Shakespeare's Macbeth led by Hannah Simms and Adam Lee Secor.
Ages 13-18, no experience needed.
Performance for invited audience at end.
This is an outdoor event.
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

No Theater
Northampton Community Arts Trust

Northampton Playwrights Lab

PaintBox Theatre


Pauline Productions

Performance Project

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
In the Spotlight, Inc.

Berkshire on Stage
ArtsBeat TV/Radio and News Column
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