Thursday, January 6, 2022

Pioneer Valley Theatre News January 6, 2022

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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January 6 - 26, 2021

Happy New Year!

Covid cases are rising, which means theatres are closing... Happier Valley Comedy has announced they will be closed until at least January 15, No Theater's performance of Let Go has been delayed until the 20th, a few shows in other places have been cancelled as well. Stay safe, everyone, and get vaccinated if you haven't yet! Get those boosters!

The next issue will include events from January 13 - February 2. 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
Paper String Revolt
January 16 at 7:30 PM at Northampton Center for the Arts, 33 Hawley Street
Tickets and More Information
Real Live Theatre presents FAR REACHES
Streaming now, free of charge, on our website, BandCamp, and YouTube.
Exit 7 Players present The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
February 11, 12, 18, 19 at 8PM, February 13, 20 at 2PM
Tickets and more information 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

Naming the Trope
by Ben Raanan

From the article: 

It’s 2019, and I am walking into a prominent American theatre to see a well-reviewed production. This production is intended to examine a specific disability in an honest and exciting light to change our cultural understanding of disability. As a disabled theatremaker and activist, I anticipated an honest portrayal of both the hardships and celebrations of being disabled in America. Except this doesn’t do that. Instead, it follows a familiar pattern of sacrificing disabled truth for an unsettling, two-dimensional depiction of disability filled with clichés and stereotypes. The playwright wrote the disabled character as a shell of a human, an able-bodied writer’s judgement on how a disabled individual interacts with the world around them. That night, I leave at intermission, discouraged but unsurprised at yet another portrayal of disability as “lesser than.”

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!
“Paper, String, Revolt”
January 16th @ 7:30pm

Northampton Center for the Arts  
33 Hawley St. Northampton, MA.

Video of the Show and Q and A with the artists via Zoom - January 29th @ 7:30pm,  Sunday January 30th @ 3:00pm
With thanks to Northampton Open Media 

Website for Information and Tickets: 

Pioneer Valley performance group “Paper, String, Revolt” presents its debut of puppetry, live music, storytelling and clowning with tales ranging from the sublime to the absurd. 

The vision of this group of seasoned local artists is to celebrate adult-centered puppetry and performance art in Western Massachusetts. They shine a light on societal struggles and address humanity’s plight in poignant and whimsical ways. Worldwide puppetry is used to express political, psychological and spiritual themes. In short, it is a wonderful medium for adult-oriented theater.

Come join “Paper, String, Revolt” for their inaugural event in the Val
Co-directed by Jean Minuchin and Beth Fairservis

Creators/performers of original works: 
Beth Fairservis, Sue Huszar, Stephen Katz, Peter LaBrusciano, Jean Minuchin, Jonathan Stevens

Northampton Center for the Arts requires full COVID-19 vaccination cards to enter. Exemptions can be accommodated by a negative PCR COVID test within the previous 48 hours. Masks are required throughout the building and during the show.
Tickets will be sold to an audience of 40 with socially distanced seating.

The virtual performance will be available on Zoom with an artist Q and A on January 29th and 30th. 
For more information:
No Theater, A.P.E., Ltd.
January 20, 21, 22, 27, 28, 29 @ 8:00pm
A.P.E., 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. 01060

(performances January 6-15 have been cancelled)

No Theater performs live

        LET GO

a short adult comedy about
love, death and piles of papers…
with Roy Faudree and Jane Karakula
A.P.E. 126 Main Street, Northampton

Tickets are now on sale:  

Limited Seating
A.P.E. requires full COVID-19 vaccination and the wearing of masks to enter the gallery.
Be ready to present proof of vaccination or a negative PCR COVID test.

No Theater celebrates 50 years of original works for the stage in the Valley and around the world.
RLT presents our first original audioplay, Far Reaches.

One Raft Person. One Witness. One world covered in endless ocean.

What do we remember? What does it mean to survive, and what is survival worth? Two people from radically different backgrounds reach towards friendship and understanding, following memories and stories as they seek some kind of truth.

Written & Directed by Ellen Morbyrne
Production Managed by Syl Simmons
Sound Design/Recording/Editing by Rachel Hall
Theme Song by Cynthia Zaitz, PhD
Performed by Trenda Loftin as the Witness and Linda Tardif as the Raft Person.

Streaming now, free of charge, on our website, BandCamp, and YouTube.

This program is supported by grants from the Amherst, Burlington, Greenfield, Hadley, Holyoke, South Hadley, and Springfield Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

From New England New Play Alliance:

Real Live Theatre presents
Far Reaches, an audio play
by Ellen Morbyrne
streaming now
directed by Ellen Morbyrne

One Raft Person. One Witness. One world covered in endless ocean. Far Reaches follows a deeply curious, tender-hearted Witness from another world as they discover everything they can about the ocean-swallowed planet of the solitary Raft Person. As the Witness and the Raft Person become ever more entwined in friendship, startling discoveries lead to endless layers of questions, and the two friends will need to unlock deeply forgotten memories in order to understand what their futures might hold. Stream free.


Merrimack Repertory Theatre presents
The Rise and Fall
of Holly Fudge

by Trista Baldwin
now-January 5
directed by Courtney Sale

It is Christmas 2020, and Carol is a hard-working single mother who makes award-winning "Holly" fudge, named after her daughter. She serves it every holiday. She gifts it to her friends and co-workers. She's determined that this year won't be any different, even if she has to wear a mask while whipping up her famous dessert. But with her daughter's girlfriend crashing Christmas, her neighbor's new-found love of confectionery, and the protests erupting on her front lawn, Carol is finding it tough to make this the most wonderful time of year. Tickets: contact box office.

The Depot for New Play Readings presents
Mitch Maclay Sings Just for You
by Craig Bailey
January 9
directed by Anne Flammang

Chris and Loralie await one-time pop sensation Mitch Maclay's upcoming visit to small-town radio station TRU-92. What is it about the has-been crooner's appearance that's put them at odds? And will he even show up? 

Psychoanalysis and Its Discontents
by David Guaspari
January 9
directed by Anne Flammang

On Walpurgisnacht, Mortimer Todd makes a theatrical appearance at the home of Sigmund Freud, claiming to be Death itself. Freud begins to psychoanalyze his visitor, a proceeding complicated by the entrance of his sister-in-law Minna to announce that her goldfish Cleopatra has committed suicide. When Minna takes a shine to Todd, he allows her to choose who will be that night’s victim. Will Minna, fed up with relentless therapy, choose Freud? An impulsive act keeps her from changing the course of history. Contact for Zoom link.


Arlekin Players present
by Nana Grinstein, Blair Cadden, and Igor Golyak
now-January 23
directed by Igor Golyak

Witness, the latest project from Arlekin’s Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab, is a new documentary theater piece about Jewish immigration in the face of antisemitism. The piece is inspired by the journey of the MS St. Louis, which left Hamburg in 1939 with over 900 Jewish people on board and headed to Cuba only to be turned away, leaving the passengers stranded with nowhere to go and no escape. Witness shares stories of Jewish immigrants from around the globe through an interactive virtual theater experience at the nexus of film, theater, and video games.
Tickets: $12-$25.

LAVA Arts Center/Real Theater
Bridges Director Sought
January 2022

A director is sought for a series of staged readings of a play about Israel/Palestine to be held over one-two weekends in March or early April at the LAVA Art Center in Greenfield. Stipend available. Please email if interested by early January.

WHAT: Play Incubation Collective (PIC) 2022 Developmental Residency
WHEN: March-December 2022 (Applications now due Feb 15 2021)
WHERE: Rehearsals will take place in Hampshire County (playwrights should expect to regularly attend local in-person rehearsals)

PIC is actively seeking submissions of scripts-in-progress by local BIPOC
and/or queer playwrights. We are defining local as roughly within a 1 hour drive from Northampton, MA.

PIC’s process of play development is unique. We invite incoming playwrights to spearhead their vision with the support of our collective of theater makers. We bring a talented team of local actors, dramaturgs, designers and more to collaborate with each writer on the development of their piece. The specifics of what that development looks like are open to the writer. All collaborating artists  help contribute to PIC’s monthly administrative duties.

The 2022 PIC writer-in-residence will receive a stipend to go along with this 9-month residency, access to monthly rehearsal space, and a culminating public presentation of their play in the fall of 2022.


Submission Form Due by FEB 15, 2021
Submitted scripts do not need to be complete. Playwrights must submit a minimum of 20 pages, and the play’s cast should not exceed 10 characters. Plays only please. We cannot accept musicals at this time.

Finalists will be notified by March 1st and PIC will be in touch to schedule an interview.

Estimated Time Commitment: 10 hrs/month rehearsal time, 2-4 hrs/month admin time

Learn more and apply here.

Written and directed by Annie Baker, originally from Amherst, Massachusetts, and Pulitzer-Prize-winning playwright of The Flick.
Produced by Dan Janvey - Academy-Award-winning producer of Nomadland and Beasts of the Southern Wild - and BBC Films.
The film follows 11 year old Lacy, her mother Janet, and the three people who come into their lives over one summer in 1991.
LACY - 8-12 years old, any ethnicity. She is herself. Curious, observant, straightforward. Solid in her uniqueness, lives in her imagination. Odd birds welcome.
PIANO TEACHER - female piano teacher, 50-75 years old, any ethnicity. She teaches the Suzuki method to the main character, Lacy (8-12 years old).
Acting experience is not necessary.
FILMING BEGINS SUMMER 2022 in Western Massachusetts.
Casting directors Eléonore Hendricks and Abby Harri are teaming up for their third film together in search of the young lead for Untitled Annie Baker Film. They specialize in street casting, finding non-professional actors, and discovering new talent.
For more information and/or if you’re interested in you or your child being considered for the film, please apply at:
password: Lacy
For any questions, contact Eléonore and Abby at:
Apply Now to the Completely Ridiculous Conservatory!

Winter Session
January 10th - March 5th, 2022

Spring Session
April 4th - May 28th, 2022

Starting in January, and then again in April, a dynamic ensemble of Completely Ridiculous students will have the opportunity to engage in globally minded professional actor training, all from the comfort of home!

The CRC is a one of a kind program, in that it was built entirely for Zoom, AND each faculty member not only has extensive training in their individual discipline of actor training, but also a strong foundation in the world of clown, games, play, and physical acting - having all trained with Master Clown and Commedia Teacher Christopher Bayes at the David Geffen School of Drama at Yale, and/or The Pandemonium Studio.

At the end of the 8 weeks, Completely Ridiculous students will walk away with:

A greater sense of direction, as well as concrete and actionable next steps for each individuals career.

•A more enthusiastic and curious body.

•A larger capacity to dream and dream big.

•A greater comfort with spontaneity, freedom and play.

Students will also gain a deeper understanding of who they are as unique, individual artists and what they bring to an ensemble, as well as a whole new set of skills and professional contacts to apply to their career and/or ongoing education.

Don’t miss your chance to work with our ever expanding community of international artists and apply today!

Click the link below for all of the info and COME PLAY!

Apply Now!

The ArtsHub 2022 Virtual Summit: How to Recover and Thrive is being held January 10 - 14, 2022. The ArtsHub 2022 Virtual Summit: How to Recover and Thrive welcomes emerging and established artists, performers, arts managers, and those in creative fields to join in a week-long series of virtual interactive workshops, training, and networking sessions. The ArtsHub Virtual Summit, designed to provide tools to help those working in creative fields recover from the disruption created by the pandemic and learn how to position their business to thrive as the economy recovers, will have daily sessions January 10 - 14, 2022, most days at 10AM, 12 Noon, and 6PM ET.

More information and registration here. 

the Drama Studio
January and December Workshops at Drama Studio!
01/15, 01/22
This winter, we are offering ON-SITE workshops for students of all ages!

Join one or more of the Drama Studio winter workshops and learn about our theater conservatory for ages 6-18. We will offer the following workshops:

Stage Combat
Ages 13-18
January, 15th
Ages 9-12
January, 22nd

For more information, visit
Happier Valley Comedy presents Improv for Scaredy Cats
January 15 at 10:00 AM
Happier Valley Comedy Theater (1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley, MA)

Does the idea of performing in front of people scare the dickens out of you?
Have you ever watched improv and thought, "I could never do that!"?
Have you ever watched improv and thought, "Hell, I could definitely do that!"?
Do you not give a flying fig about improv comedy but want to learn some tricks to become more confident speaking in public and more mindful in the moment?
Interested in checking out what's going on at Happier Valley Comedy?
Are you curious about improv but you don't consider yourself a scaredy cat?

If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, "Improv for Scaredy Cats (And Non-Scaredy Cats Too!)" is the workshop for you. It's designed especially for the improv newbies, improv-curious, and anyone who wants to step outside their comfort zone.

Once you get started, you'll soon see it's not that scary after all.
Head of Happiness Pam Victor leads you through a very gentle, easy approach to improv comedy in a positive and accepting atmosphere where failure is disempowered. (At HVC, we believe it's only a mistake if you don't learn from it.)
Our main focus is to have as much joy and ease as humanly possible in two hours!

No experience necessary. Being funny is NOT required. The only requirement is a willingness to learn something new and have as much fun as possible.
Submit your workshop, class, audition, performance, or any other theatre opportunity here!
Pioneer Valley Theatre Companies
Academy of Music Theatre

Amherst Community Theater

Arena Civic Theatre

A.C.T. Youth Theatre

Black Cat Theater

Chester Theatre Company


Cold Spring Community Theatre

Completely Ridiculous Productions

Drama Studio

Double Edge Theatre

Eggtooth Productions

Exit 7 Players

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

Mount Holyoke College Rooke Theatre

No Theater

Northampton Community Arts Trust

Northampton Playwrights Lab
PaintBox Theatre


Pauline Productions

Performance Project

Phantom Sheep Players

Play Incubation Collective

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

Unity House Players

Valley Light Opera

Ware Community Theatre

Westfield Theatre Group

Wilbraham United Players

World and Eye
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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