Thursday, June 23, 2022

Pioneer Valley Theatre News June 23, 2022

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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June 23 - July 13, 2022

Looking for something to do tonight? Check out the Sondheim Celebration presented by the Musicians of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Hall. Or come see the show I'm stage managing at CitySpace: ViewPoint Theatre's Blood and Water - it's an original musical about love and grief and family. Also tonight: Hedwig and the Angry Inch or Betty & the Patch. 

For more about both Blood and Water and Hedwig and the Angry Inch, read this week's StageStruck column - Chris Rohmann reviews both productions.

I'm going to do a trial run of including Berkshire county events in the newsletter. Tell your friends in the Berkshires! (Because I volunteer my time to create this newsletter, if this ends up taking too much extra time, I will not continue it. Help me out by submitting complete information!)

The next issue will include events from June 30 - July 20. 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
MOSSO present The Sondheim Celebration 
Thursday, June 23 at 7:30 PM
Sprinfield Symphony Hall More Information Tickets
Westfield Theatre Group Auditions for Marvin's Room
June 23 and 26 at 6:30pm
More Information
$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

Best Medicine: Why We Need the 2022 LTC Comedy Carnaval
by Amelia Acosta Powell 

From the article: 

My instinct in a fucked-up situation is to make a joke. Little did I know when I pitched the Comedy Carnaval to the Latinx Theatre Commons Steering Committee in 2018 just how fucked-up the situation would be by the time the event came to fruition.

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!
ViewPoint Theatre
Blood and Water, a love story

6/23, 24, 25, 26
7:00 PM
6/26 are 3pm matinees. All other shows begin at 7pm.
CitySpace in Easthampton, MA

Blood and Water, a love story is based on a true story, the life of the playwright and fellow cast-member, Francesca. It tells the story of two mothers and two daughters as one mother is diagnosed with cancer. It's a story of love and grief, but also humor as the family dynamics emphasize the strength of this family as they grapple with illness and eventually, death. Blood and Water explores the meaning of family with its intimate production and honest dialogue and music.

Our opening night is June 17th with 6 other dates over the course of 2 weeks in Easthampton, MA. We hope this production will be a celebration of live theatre, new works, and  the many ways to love.

K and E Theater Group Presents HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH
COVID can try to tear her down, but Hedwig is going to give Northampton the whole Angry Inch! The Tony Award-winning glam rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch comes to Northampton Center for the Arts for 5 performances this summer, June 23-25, 2022. K and E Theater Group is presenting this show as an inaugural production of their Coming out with Pride series, presented this June in an annual event, celebrating queer-forward stories.
Innovative, heartbreaking, and savagely funny, Hedwig and the Angry Inch is the landmark rock’n’roll musical with text by John Cameron Mitchell and music and lyrics by Stephen Trask that broke the mold and captured Broadway. This genre-bending, fourth-wall-smashing musical sensation, with a pulsing score and electrifying performances, tells the story of Hedwig Schmidt, an East German punk rock goddess whose botched sex change operation left her with just “an angry inch.” Now, she and her band are out to right many wrongs.
Directed by K and E Theater Group Artistic Director Eddie Zitka, this production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch features Eddie Zitka as Hedwig, Kelly Gagner as Yitzhak, and David Webber as The Angry Inch. The band is led by musical director Devi Badea, and features Justin RodzenCharlotte Ross, and Mitch Tilghman.
Performances run from Thursday, June 23, 2022, through Saturday, June 25, 2022. Shows are presented on Thursday, June 23, 2022, at 7:30 PM, Friday, June 24, 2022, at 7:00 PM and 10:30 PM, and Saturday, June 25, 2022, at 2:00 PM and 7:30 PM. Tickets are general admission for $27.00. There is no reserved seating.
All performances are at Northampton Center for the Arts, located at 33 Hawley Street in Northampton, Massachusetts.
For additional information and to purchase tickets, visit
Celebrating Sondheim
Thursday, June 23, 7:30pm
Springfield Symphony Hall

MOSSO celebrates the music and lyrics of Broadway legend Stephen Sondheim, creator of such classics as A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, and more. Tim Stella conducts, and he’s bringing Broadway stars Hugh Panaro (The Phantom of the OperaSide ShowLes MisĂ©rables), Lisa Vroman (The Phantom of The Opera), Ron Raines (Follies) and Florence Lacey (The Grand Tour, Hello, Dolly! and Follies) with him!
The Majestic Theater will present the debut of Betty & The Patch, a new contemporary comedy/drama by Producing Director Danny Eaton June 9 through July 24.
The play is set at The Patch, one of those local destination restaurants with the reputation of good and plentiful food along with a kind of privacy which makes it ideal for intimate get togethers. It’s been run by Betty Borelli for years but a recent kitchen fire has forced a shut down. Determined to reopen, Betty has recruited her daughter Cristina, a successful attorney, to come home and help. But that’s not the only reason — she has had recent health issues and Betty wants Cristina and chef Bobo Henderson to ensure the restaurant’s future. There are family secrets as well that need to be finally revealed, and recent visits from past friends have added to the urgency. Will Cristina stay? Will Bobo finally let Cristina know he’s in love with her? And just who is Cristina’s father?
The cast of Betty & The Patch includes Christine Anthony (Betty), Katie Mack (Cristina), Issa Best (Bobo), Brad Shepard (Joey), Michael Graham Morales (Michael), J. T. Waite (Andy), Linda Storms (Betty understudy), Valerie Vaile (Cristinas understudy), Joel Gladu (Bobo understudy), Rick Malone (Andy/Joey understudy) and Liam Toner (Michael understudy). 
Eaton will direct the play.  Associate Producing Director/Stage Manager is Sue Dziura, and Stephen Petit is production stage manager.  Set design is by Greg Trochlil, and Dawn McKay is costumer designer.  Daniel D. Rist is lighting designer.
In accordance with regulations from the Actors' Equity Association, an American labor union representing those who work in live theatrical performance, the Majestic Theater requires all attendees to wear masks at all times (except when eating and drinking), to be fully vaccinated against COVID, and to present their vaccination card (or a photo or other proof of it, on their cell phone) upon arrival.  At this time, no food or drink may be brought into the theater, and needs to be consumed in the Majestic CafĂ©.
Tickets to Betty & The Patch range from $31 - $35 and are available for sale at the Majestic’s box office Monday – Friday 10am – 5pm and Saturday 10am – 1pm; or on the phone at (413) 747-7797. 
Chester Theatre Company
6/23 at 2pm and 7:30pm, 6/24 at 7:30pm, 6/25 at 2pm and 7:30pm, 6/26 at 2pm, 6/29 at 2pm, 6/30 at 2pm and 7:30pm, 7/1 at 7:30pm, 7/2 at 2pm and 7:30pm, 7/3 at 2:pm
Chester Town Hall Theatre, 16 Middlefield Road, Chester MA, 01011

June 23-July 3

Wednesday at 2pm, Thursday at 2pm and 7:30 pm, Friday at 7:30pm, Saturday at 2pm and 7:30pm, and Sunday at 2pm.

Written and Directed by Daniel Elihu Kramer

Originally premiered at CTC in 2011, Pride@Prejudice is a reimagining of the beloved Jane Austen classic filled with bloggers, chat rooms, Austen enthusiasts, and even Jane herself. A hilarious and moving homage to Jane Austen’s most beloved novel, with 30 characters portrayed by five versatile actors.

Shakespeare & Company
Performing til July 3, 2022; some matinee performances
70 Kemble Street, Lenox, MA  01240

From Robert Fagles’ translation, An Iliad transforms Homer’s epic poem into a riveting monologue. Crafted around the stories of Achilles and Hector with language that is both poetic and conversational, An Iliad refreshes a world classic, thus creating a powerful piece of theater that explores the human compulsion toward violence.

More information.
Happier Valley Comedy
The Happier Valley Championship
June 25 at 7:00 PM
Happier Valley Comedy's Next Door Lounge (1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley, MA)

In this competitive comedy show, two teams of improvisers face off through scenes and games to see who can win the ultimate prize: your laughter! Fourth Saturday of every month at 7pm at the Happier Valley Comedy Theater (1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley, on rte.9). Tickets: $13 online and at the door.
For more info:

Play Incubation Collective Summer Salon
Wed June 29th 7:30-9:30
Divine Theater at Gateway City Arts, 92 Race St Holyoke

PIC Salons are FREE curated public showcases of brand new works-in-progress and feedback discussion with the presenting artists + a public open mic where anyone is welcome to present original works of 5 minutes or less.

These gatherings are a great opportunity to not only see our development process in action, but engage in conversation with PIC artists and serve as the first audience for new works. PLUS all attendees are invited to participate in the open mic.

The Summer Salon will feature excerpts of work by writer/performer Allie Wittner, playwright Aria "Lune" Acevedo, and multimedia artist Ebbie.
Leave Your Fears Here (June 30 - July 10) is a loving and insightful memoir written and performed by the accomplished and familiar stage and screen actor James Morrison. In a riveting performance that legendary producer Norman Lear called “An extremely moving play by an extremely moving performer”, the well-known actor recounts his 10-year-old son Seamus’s daunting passage from brain cancer diagnosis, through treatment to ultimate recovery, and how he inspired courage and change in others, most notably his father. It’s a profound, heroic story of the power of hope leading to triumph in the darkest hours.
When catastrophic illness strikes suddenly, lives are rudderless. When their son all at once faced numerous physical debilities and a life-threatening diagnosis, Morrison, his wife and family had to face reality and mortality while simultaneously navigating the labyrinth of 21st century life and medical processes. They and other adults found themselves transcended by their son’s courage, innate wisdom and ability to face and accept harrowing experience with truth, strength, humor and poetic nature.
Directed by Robert Egan, Leave Your Fears Here was incubated, developed and first staged at the nationally renowned and multi-award-winning Ojai Playwrights Conference, where Robert has been Artistic Director since 2002. 
Leave Your Fears Here closes the four-part Solo Fest and will be staged ten times only, from June 30-July 10, Thurs.-Sun., 7:30pm and 3pm, in the Liebowitz Black Box Theater, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 84 Alford Rd, Great Barrington, MA 01230. Advance tickets are encouraged and can be made on the Great Barrington Public Theater website.
The Gentle Villainy of Richard III, Troubler of the Poor World's Peace

Adapted from the Shakespeare & Directed by Toby Vera Bercovici. With Choreography by Annelise Nielsen.

An adaptation of William Shakespeare's Richard III which situates the story of power-hungry Richard as a cautionary bedtime tale told by Queen Margaret to the audience shortly after the death of her husband and son.

JULY 9 at 7:30pm at the Shea Theater in Turners Falls

JULY 10 at 2pm at APE@Hawley in Northampton

Cast, in order of appearance:

Jeannine Haas, AEA...Queen Margaret of Anjou
Linda Tardif...King Richard III
Ellen Morbyrne...Lady Anne, Messenger
Myka Plunkett....Queen Elizabeth
Rachel Hall....Clarence, Dorset, Prince Edward, Messenger, Richmond
Trenda Loftin....Grey, King Edward IV, Lord Mayor, Messenger
Dan Morbyrne....Duke of Buckingham

More information.

Box Office is now open for Double Edge’s 40th Anniversary Summer Spectacle
The Hidden Territories of the Bacchae!

The Hidden Territories of the Bacchae, directed by Founding Artistic Director Stacy Klein and created with the Double Edge Ensemble, is a response to Euripides’ Bacchae in which women’s rites are no longer in hidden territories but freely able to express their deeply held desires.

Previews: July 15 - 17 at 8pm
Performances: Wed - Sun, July 20 - July 31 at 8pm, August 3 - 6 at 7:30pm


For questions,
email or call our Box Office at 413-628-0277.

Ja'Duke Theater
Crazy For You
7/16 at 7pm, 7/17 @2pm, 7/22 @ 7pm, 7/23 @ 7pm, 7/24 @2pm
Ja'Duke Theater

A zany rich-boy-meets-hometown-girl romantic comedy, Crazy For You® tells the story of young New York banker Bobby Child, who is sent to Deadrock, Nevada, to foreclose on a rundown theatre. In Deadrock, Bobby falls for spunky Polly Baker, the theatre owner’s daughter. But Polly takes an instant dislike to the city slicker, so Bobby vows – through cunning, razzmatazz, and a hilarious case of mistaken identity – to win Polly’s heart and save the theatre. Memorable Gershwin tunes from the score include “I Got Rhythm,” “Naughty Baby,” “They Can't Take That Away from Me,” “Embraceable You,” “But Not for Me,” “Nice Work if You Can Get It” and “Someone to Watch Over Me.”

Rating: G
Run Time: 2 hours and 15 Minutes (one intermission)
More information
Audition Announcement: Marvin's Room

The Westfield Theatre Group, a department of the Westfield Woman’s Club is proud to announce auditions June 23rd and 26th for Marvin's Room to be performed in the Fall of 2022.

Marvin's Room combines drama and comedy while exploring interpersonal relationships within a family faced with a series of crises and difficult life choices. With resonant and timely themes, Marvin’s Room casts a sensitive but often darkly humorous light on caregiving, aging parents, sibling rivalry, teenage rebellion, abandonment, mental health and terminal illness. The play evokes deep empathy and understanding, smiles of recognition and ultimately both laughter and sympathy for our shared human experience. Audiences may alternately laugh and cry, but above all they will emerge having a deeply affecting theatrical experience.

Frank Rich of the New York Times called it:
“…one of the funniest plays of this year as well as one of the wisest and most moving” in his review here.

The play was staged twice off Broadway in the 90’s and in London’s West End, winning the Drama Desk award for outstanding play as well as individual Drama Desk actors’ awards, Drama Critics’ Circle and Obie awards. An Academy Award and Golden Globe nominated film version was released in 1996, and the production was revived on Broadway in 2017 to very favorable reviews.

For more information, please go to the Westfield Theatre Group website at
Questions? Email us at
Join the Pelham Library’s
Pelham Players
for our FREE 2022 two-week
youth theater program

July 20-August 7
evenings and weekends
at the Pelham Library

Free and open to all,
ages 9-18!
Signup deadline: June 25th
or to sign up

Majestic Theater 25th Season Auditions

Equity Principal Auditions 6/27 & 6/28 10AM-6PM

Non-Equity and Equity drop-ins 6/29-7/1 6-10PM, 7/2 12-3PM

Call (413) 747-7797 to make an appointment

Casting for:

Music & Lyrics by Benny Anderson & Bjorn Ulvaeus Book by Catherine Johnson Directed by Danny Eaton

By T. Emerson Directed by Sheila Siraguisa

By Karen Zacarias Directed by James Warwick

By Tennessee Williams Directed by Rand Foerster

By Alan James Directed by Danny Eaton

More details about which roles are available here.

Incident at Vichy
Tech Rehearsals - September 24 and 25; Production Week - September 26 thru October 1; Performances - October 2 thru 8
The Institute for the Musical Arts - Goshen

I'm seeking a production team for Incident at Vichy, an Arthur Miller one-act to be produced at the Institute for the Musical Arts in Goshen between October 2 and 8. The production will be a fundraiser for the Pioneer Valley Workers Center in Northampton.

Indiegogo Campaign

I'm looking for a lighting designer, costume designer, stage manager, and assistant director/dramaturg. This is a paid opportunity. Contact Frank Pagliaro at if interested.
WAM Theatre Presents Spotlight Series Online conversations with groundbreaking artists

WAM Theatre is delighted to announce our brand new online Spotlight Series. The series invites audience members into conversations with groundbreaking theatre artists, where WAM patrons and the wider community will gain insight into their process and how their work intersects with activism. 

In the first installment (released on April 20, 2022)  WAM’s new Board Member Nicole M. Young-Martin (Community Investments Manager at the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts) initiates a conversation on season planning with members of WAM Theatre’s Artistic staff: Kristen van Ginhoven (Producing Artistic Director), Tatiana Godfrey (Dramaturg) and Talya Kingston (Associate Artistic Director).  Their frank conversation takes viewers inside the process of choosing WAM’s 2022 season as a group and with community input.

The next installment in the Spotlight Series (released on April 26, 2022) is a conversation on art and climate change with The New Galileos playwright Amy Berryman in conversation with WAM Dramaturg Tatiana Godfrey.  The New Galileos,  the first play in WAM’s 2022 Fresh Takes Play Reading Series, was written while Amy Berryman was in residence at MIT and in conversation with climate scientists.  Its one of two plays (the other being Walden) that Berryman has set in a “near future.”  In this interview, she talks about how her imagined futures both “serve as a warning sign but also futures that contain some sort of hope and vision… are important in how we try to bring attention to this [climate] crisis.”

The third Spotlight installment (released on May 24th), is an interview with director and WAM board member Megan Sandberg-Zakian about directing The New Galileos, as well as her autobiography and general philosophy on storytelling articulated in her book, “There Must be Happy Endings: on a Theater of Optimism and Honesty.” In the interview, Megan talks about the ethics of making hopeful art in an unjust world and how she hopes to empower both the artists she works with and the audiences who attend her productions.

All three of these first three Spotlight videos are available now to watch for free on the WAM website.  Others that are coming up include: a conversation on casting controversies with Victor Vasquez (the founder and lead Casting Director of X Casting), a panel on women in theatrical designing (featuring some of the designers of our Fall production of Cadillac Crew) and a conversation on the importance of highlighting elder women on stage that will put Producing Artistic Director Kristen van Ginhoven in conversation with some of her cast of Escaped Alone.

For more information visit

Drama Studio Summer Programs
July 5th, 2022 - August 19th, 2022

The Drama Studio is a unique community where young people grow as artists, leaders, and individuals. Now offering a variety of onsite acting and theater programs in a safe environment, including Stories on Stage, where students will prepare an entire production of Story Theatre and Improv for younger audiences, including a literacy video. In TeenScene: SummerFest teens will present a fully produced festival of One Acts. Other programs include Acting Up: Summer Fun Stories, SummerSlam: Improv Week, and Island Improv, Scenes and Myths. No prior acting experience is required. Summer enrollment now open! Space is limited.
Hampshire Shakespeare Company presents
Educational Theater Workshops
July 11-15, July 21-29, Aug 1-5
Northampton Center for the Arts

Fun and educational week-long theater programs for kids ages 7-15 run by local professionals.
Enrollment Opens Monday for PIC's First
Youth Program
WHAT: This 2-week summer program, led by arts educators Kit Marshall and Felicia Sloin, will invite participants to explore their creativity through art, music, yoga, drumming, dance, and improvisation. The program will culminate in a celebratory sharing for friends and family. 
We are very excited to be presenting our first ever youth programming with CREATIVE JOURNEYS - formerly a program of Valley Performance Playground-  this summer!

WHO: Ages 7-11 (limited to 14 participants)
WHERE: Lander Grinspoon Academy, 257 Prospect St., Northampton
WHEN: August 1-5, 8-12, 9am-3pm
COST: $625 for 2 weeks

Registration opens Monday, March 7th and will be limited to 14 participants. So register early to reserve your spot!

Learn More Here
Yoga Sanctuary
Play Practice: Exploring Yoga & Theatre
Summer Program for Kids
8/1–8/5 (Monday–Friday), 9–2 pm
Yoga Sanctuary, Thornes Marketplace (Third Floor)

Join us for a fabulous week of daily yoga practice and theatre-making, as we use our bodies, breath, and voices to develop skills for acting and storytelling. Every day will include yoga techniques, theatre games, and creative exercises designed to unleash each student's unique expression, as well as foster dynamic group creation. Plus, all the summer fun of daily outdoors time and a special day spent walking and swimming in our beautiful local nature! On the last day, we'll host a sharing at 1pm for families to get a peak at what the students have been practicing this week.

Play Practice is open to students ages 10-13 of all experience levels (including no previous experience) and all physical abilities—yoga and theatre are for every body! Reach out to us with any questions.

More information.

Play Practice is led by Ellen Morbyrne, a local teacher and parent with over 20 years of experience as both a theatre-maker and a yoga practitioner. Ellen has been teaching and directing theatre at North Star: Self-Directed Learning for Teens since 2003, has taught theatre locally at high schools and homeschool co-ops and at the Drama Studio, and has been teaching yoga to folks of all ages since 2009. She is the cofounder of Real Live Theatre and teaches weekly yoga classes here at Yoga Sanctuary.

Cost: $325/child (regular price); $400/child (pay-it-forward price; help us offer a scholarship to another child!)
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

Theater Between Addresses


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
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