Thursday, February 15, 2024

Pioneer Valley Theatre News February 15, 2024

Pioneer Valley Theatre Newsletter
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February 15 - March 6, 2024

This week is the first New Play Reading of the semester at Smith - check that out tonight. Also tonight - the opening of The Ladyslipper at the Majestic Theater. Check the upcoming workshops and classes section below - lots of new ones added. (Click view this email in a browser to make sure you get to see them all!)

The next issue will include events from February 22 - March 13. 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
Theatre Between Addresses presents To Serve the Hive
March 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9 at Pine Box Studios
Tickets and 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

Autistic Artists Should Be Telling Autistic Stories
by Megan Lummus

From the article

Theatre is a powerful force. The stories told onstage shape how an audience views their friends, children, and colleagues. It can be a great place to form an empathic connection with others and learn stories from different perspectives. However, when stories are put into the wrong hands, they can cause these perspectives to be seen as strange, leading the audiences to exclude those people in their everyday lives.

Have you read an interesting article about theatre recently? Send it to me!

Smith College Department of Theatre
New Play Reading Series: Whose Fault? by Zoe Koeninger ’24
Thursday, February 15 – 7:30 PM
Acting Studio 1, Mendenhall CPA, 122 Green Street

Whose Fault? reimagines Leo Tolstoy, one of Russia’s greatest authors, through the eyes of the woman who tirelessly helped him along the way—his wife.

Free and open to all. 



Debut of Producing Director Danny Eaton’s Newest Contemporary Drama

The Ladyslipper, described as a “heartfelt exploration of family, friendship and finding love in the least likely of places, will be presented at West Springfield’s Majestic Theater February 15 through March 24.

Written by the Majestic’s Producing Director Danny Eaton, the play follows the chain of events following the death of a local watering hole proprietor.  Her long-lost daughter is discovered and arrives from England to make decisions about the future of the restaurant.  She is invited into the lives of a cast of local folks who each have their own ties to the place, and to the woman who founded it.  The Ladyslipper focuses on everyday people living ordinary lives, and the joy and simplicity of community that become family.

Eaton is producing director, Sue Dziura is associate producing director, and James Warwick will direct the play.  Cast members include Madeleine Maggio, Jay Sefton, Chelsie Nectow, Mark Dean, Jay Torres, and Linda Storms.  Stephen Petit is production stage manager, and associate production manager is Aurora Ferraro.  Dan Rist is set and lighting designer, and costumer designer is Dawn McKay.

 Tickets are now being sold for The Ladyslipper, as well as The Play that Goes Wrong, which is the final show in the Majestic’s current season, and runs April 18 – June 2.  Tickets range from $31 - $37 and are available either in-person at the box office or by calling (413) 747-7797.  Box office hours are Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm, and Saturday 10am-1pm.   The wearing of face masks in the theater is optional.

Doors to the theater will open one hour before the start of a show, which is also when the café opens.  For more information, visit

Springfield College William Simpson Fine Arts Series
Sara Felder in SIDE SHOW: Juggling from the Margins
February 21 at 7:30 PM
Fuller Arts Center Appleton Auditorium, Springfield College

Sara Felder in SIDE SHOW: Juggling from the Margins
Wednesday, February 21 at 7:30 FREE
Fuller Arts Center, Springfield College
Side Show is a funny, theatrical, and moving meditation on the balancing act of being human. In a collage of juggling routines and stories from Jewish Brooklyn and queer San Francisco, Felder confronts issues of fear, gender, parents, economic class, college, and more, while keeping audiences laughing along the way.

A vibrant performer, masterful juggler, and irresistible monologist, Felder brings to her performance a queer sensibility along with rich imagery provided by object-play, compelling text, and visual metaphor. Best known for her solo play, June Bride, about a traditional Jewish lesbian wedding, Felder is excited to bring the radical and witty Side Show to Springfield College.

Her work has been hailed as “hilarious and triumphantly heartwarming” by the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Feb. 21, 7:30 pm FREE
Happier Valley Comedy
The Happier Valley Championship Show

Feb 24, 2024 at 7:00 PM
The 4th Saturday of every month at 7pm
Happier Valley Comedy, 1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley

"Whose Line Is It Anyway?" meets The Super Bowl! Two funny teams face off in this fast-paced short form improv comedy show. Games are inspired by audience suggestions and participation and even scored by an audience panel of judges to see who can win the ultimate prize: YOUR LAUGHTER! (And some old trophies we found in someone's attic.) Our player roster includes Hillary Bucs, Chris "Tina" Cronin, Katharine Daube, Ben May, David Milgrim, Chris Mirabal, Dave Ruderman, Holly Ruderman, and Ivy Weiskopf. Our next show: Saturday, February 24th at 7pm Happier Valley Comedy Theater 1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley TICKETS AVAILABLE ONLINE AND AT THE DOOR FOR $15

More information.
Smith College Department of Theatre 
You on the Moors Now

by Jaclyn Backhaus
directed by Monica Lopez Orozco
February 28, 29, March 1, 2 at 7:30 PM 
Hallie Flanagan Studio Theatre 

Four literary heroines of the nineteenth century set conventionalism ablaze when they turn down marriage proposals from their equally famous gentlemen callers. What results is a confluence of love, anger, grief, and bloodshed, as the ensemble struggles to reconcile romantic ideologies of the past with their modern ideas of courtship. Everything you’ve learned about love from the pages of Pride and Prejudice, Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, and Little Women is turned upside down in this grand theatrical battle royale.

$10 Adult, $5 Students/Seniors
Silverthorne Theater Company
Tight Pants

Feb 29, 2024 at 7:00 PM
Holyoke Media, 1 Court Plaza, Holyoke, MA 01040

Silverthorne Theater Company presents a staged reading of playwright Betel Arnold’s Tight Pants. Directed by Pedro Eiras, the reading will take place at 7:00pm on Thursday, February 29th, 2024 at the Holyoke Media as the first event of Silverthorne’s 2024 Theater Thursdays reading series, with a talkback to follow. Starring Malory Rojas Grillo, Ami Saar, Maryliz Guzman, Nathalie Vicencio, Michael Garcia, Michael Morales, and Julio Varella. Tickets are free, and Silverthorne welcomes donations so that we can continue making our work accessible to all. Betel Arnold is a Dominican playwright and advocate for people with disabilities. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at Western New England University. Her plays include It Is Finished, The Building and El Colmado. Arnold was also the longtime host and director-producer of Simply Talking, a cable access program which ran on over a dozen Western MA channels from 2009-2014. Her passion lies in advocating for the rights of people with physical and intellectual disabilities, which inspired her to create the Arts Project. As co-founder of the Arts Project, she has produced and directed various works in Western Massachusetts, including “Extraordinary People with Extraordinary Talents” at the Basketball Hall of Fame and “A Night to Believe” to sell-out audiences in Massachusetts. Arnold is the recipient of the 2004 Citation of Recognition from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts House of Representatives, as well as the 2005 Citation of Recognition from Commonwealth of Massachusetts State Senate. Founded in 2014, Silverthorne Theater Company’s mission is to engage Valley artists and audiences in the conversations of our time with bold, intimate, professional theater. The Company’s Theater Thursdays reading series primarily supports playwrights in the development of new works, with a focus on writers whose voices have historically been underrepresented in the industry. This reading is made possible by the generous support of the Holyoke Cultural Council and the West Springfield Arts Council, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

Theatre Between Addresses presents To Serve the Hive
March 1 at 7pm, March 2nd at 2pm & 7pm, March 3rd at 2pm, March 7th and 8th at 7pm, and March 9th at 2pm & 7pm
Pine Box Studios, 221 Pine Street, Northampton, MA 01062

The world is no longer plentiful, and the hive is growing restless. If the divine right of queens is no longer enough to keep the hive secure, how do they survive starvation? How does a vain, aging queen accept the need for a successor? How far can a subservient go outside her bounds? To Serve The Hive is a queer political thriller and a climate crisis drama set in a beehive (all the characters are bees).

Performances will take place on March 1st at 7pm, March 2nd at 2pm & 7pm, March 3rd at 2pm, March 7th and 8th at 7pm, and March 9th at 2pm & 7pm. The 2pm performance on March 2nd and the 7pm performance on March 8th will be mask-required; as of now, masks will be optional but encouraged at all other performances!

Written by Julia Byrne
Directed by Ezekiel Baskin
Starring Hia Ghosh, Jeannine Haas, Aracelli Sierra, Syl Simmons, Francesca Hansen-DiBello, and Sophia Defayette
Sound Design by Wynn MacKenzie
Costume Design by Julia Vincenza Whalen
Lighting Design by Cal Doerner
Stage Management by Madison VanDeurzen
Dramaturgy by Micki Kleinman
Intimacy Choreography by Fig Lefevre
Fight Choreography by A.C. Weaver

Tickets are $20 for students, seniors, and those age 25 and under, and $25 general admission. The cost of your ticket will go directly to compensating the artists involved in the production. No one will be turned away due to lack of funds - if you cannot afford the ticket prices but want to see the production, please reach out to us at theaterbetweenaddresses (at) gmail (dot) com and we will connect you with subsidized free or reduced price tickets. If you're able to donate above the cost of your ticket, we encourage you to do so, to help us compensate our artists fairly while making sure we can provide free and reduced price tickets to everyone who needs them.

This production is made possible thanks to the generous support of the Hampshire College Dance Program, Pine Box Studios, the Northampton Arts Council, and the Local Cultural Councils of Williamsburg, Hadley, and South Hadley, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.
by Lauren Gunderson
directed by Iris Sowlat
The Curtain Theater, Bromery Center for the Arts
March 1, 2, 6, 7, 8 & 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Matinee March 9 at 2 p.m.

What makes a life well-lived?

Lauren Gunderson's Emilie weighs her choices at UMass Theater

If you looked back at your life, would you feel like you made the right choices about your career? What about your relationships?
Those are the stakes in UMass Theater's upcoming production, Emilie: La Marquise du Châtelet Defends her Life Tonight. Set to run in the Curtain Theater March 1-9, Lauren Gunderson's emotionally rich, poignant play is about a woman in the 1700s who pursued both scientific knowledge and romance throughout her life. In the play, she ponders the question of whether she can have it all, a struggle that likely resonates with many —  particularly women — who come see the play.
"I think that modern culture still has a hard time really knowing that a woman can be all the things; she can look like Barbie AND be a physicist," says director Iris Sowlat.
Gunderson's play is based on a real person. Emilie was an accomplished scientist and mathematician in the 1700s, known for writing the first mainstream physics textbook in French, as well as translating Newton and Leibniz’s work into French, and then building on those works with her own contributions to the field.
Emilie was also fearless in love — although married, she followed her heart and took several lovers throughout her life, including the man she’s most famously associated with, writer and philosopher Voltaire. The play takes place as she is dying after giving birth to a lover's child.
"I tend to be drawn to pieces that say something about feminism, and that also say something about relationships ... and all of the intersections of feminism, femininity, popular culture, and interpersonal relationships within history and over time," says Sowlat.
Sowlat noted that she's been fortunate to be joined by Nathaniel Akingbemi as the show's dramaturg and Elliott Robin Ball as the assistant director. In addition to their research and theatrical eyes on the material, Akingbemi and Ball have STEM backgrounds that help to ground the science and medical elements of the play.
Setting the production in the time period will be costumes by Emily Irene Peck — working in period silhouettes including corsetting, the cast, under Sowlat's direction, are finding the characters' unique ways of moving through the space.
Gunderson's clever script has Emilie "staging" scenes from her own life to examine her choices; the set by Calypso Michelet, paired with lighting by Taylor Jaskula, allows the action to flip smartly among these moments.
Join UMass Theater for a play that examines the big questions that lie at the heart of what it means to be alive.
Recommended for audiences age 16 and up; discussion and depiction of death in childbirth, romantic relationships.

$17 — general admission
$5 — for students, youth, and senior patrons, as well as Card to Culture patrons
Tickets on sale through the UMass Fine Arts Center Box Office (call 1-800-999-UMAS or visit the box office website) as well as at the door on the night of the show.
The UMass Department of Theater is pleased to participate in the Card to Culture program. For details, please visit our Card to Culture page.
The Drama Studio is looking for Teachers and Directors for the Summer and Fall!

The Drama Studio is an exciting, challenging, and deeply enriching conservatory for young artists located in the Forest Park area of Springfield. Our teaching artists have the opportunity to work with passionate and dedicated youth at introductory through advanced levels. The work is creative, thought provoking, and rewarding. Join us, and help young actors find their voices and discover their passions!

We are looking for Teachers and Directors for the Fall 24 program year and Teachers for our Summer Program.  These are paid positions.  For more information about these positions please see our postings. 
The Hartsbrook High School is in the process of preparing to put on a production of Clue! and we are seeking students or community members who are interested in working in the following roles:

Prop Manager:
Need 1 person to:
-Assess props and furniture needed for play
-Meet with students on prop team to help them organize and schedule their work
-Support students as they find, make, and organize props and furniture
-Come to some rehearsals to get a sense of the space, cast, and play
-Stay in communication with Director
*Role could be shared among more than one person
-Should attend a rehearsal early February, start meeting and working with students early February, have props ready to be used by Mid-Late February

Need 1-2 people to:
-Meet with the students on the these teams
-Schedule finding, making, shopping for costumes
-Work with cast and Director to ensure artistic vision, comfort, and fit of costumes
-Come to some rehearsals to get a sense of the space, cast, and play
-Stay in communication with Director
*Role could be shared among more people
-Should attend a rehearsal early February, start meeting and working with students early February, have costumes ready to be used by Late February

Assistant Stage Managers: Rotating Position
- Need 1-3 people at each rehearsal beginning the week of February 26th
- Sign up for any amount of time that you can/would like to come help
- Adults come to rehearsals to support cast and crew as needed
- Support Student Stage Managers, Lighting Crew, Props Department, Costumes, Make-Up as needed
- Responsibilities may include helping students stay on task when not on stage, being extra sets of eyes and ears, helping to   problem solve as things arise, emotional support!
-1-3 adults at each rehearsal joining in on the fun and ensuring everyone is on task, safe, and listening

Base pay for these positions is $16.50/hour but could be higher, depending on experience

Rehearsals are Mondays and Thursdays, 3:30-5:30, and Wednesdays 3:30-7:00.

Interested folks can email
Auditions: What the Constitution Means to Me
February 21 at 6:00 PM

ETHEL the BARN, a studio and performance space is hosting auditions
for WHAT THE CONSTITUTION MEANS TO ME. The play addresses themes such as women's rights, immigration, domestic abuse, and the history of the United States. It received a nomination for Best Play in the 73rd Tony Awards and was a finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. There are roles for 3 actors: one male-identifying and two female-identifying (one in their 30's and the other a teenager.

All actors will share in the money collected at the door in the form of suggested donations with a minimum of $125/actor per performance. The production is scheduled for June with rehearsals in May.
For more info or to schedule an audition slot contact:
Please bring a one-minute comic monologue
It's 1968 in New York City, and Chuck Baxter is finding it difficult to climb the corporate ladder--that is, until he agrees to lend his apartment to his co-workers for their extramarital affairs. As he finds himself in the middle of a scheme he never intended to start, Chuck struggles to find love and connection in a world that grows more impersonal and transactional each day.

Based on the classic film The Apartment from Billy Wilder, Promises, Promises sets this heartfelt romantic comedy to the lively music of Burt Bacharach.
Book by Neil Simon, Music by Burt Bachrach, and Lyrics by Hal David


Saturday, February 24, 2024 - 6-9 PM
Monday, February 26, 2024 - 6-9 PM

Saturday, March 2, 2024 

First Congregational Church of Southampton
212 College Highway
Southampton, MA 01073

SEEKING strong actors, singers and movers to play featured and ensemble roles in our production. Please visit for cast breakdown of available roles.

Please prepare a pop song in the style of the show that shows off your acting and vocal range. Please bring your book in case we need to hear additional material. If you have a headshot and resume please bring it.
To audition and perform, all performers and production team members must be fully vaccinated, and have also received their first booster against COVID-19. Masks are optional during in-person auditions, callbacks, and rehearsals.

If you have a headshot and resume please bring it. A small stipend will be provided at the end of production. If you have any questions, please email


First rehearsal – July 2024, with rehearsals on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
Show run – October 11-13 & 17-19, 2024 (8 Performances) at Northampton Center for the Arts in Northampton
Directed by Eddie Zitka
Music Director by Liz Monte
Please visit and follow us on FacebookInstagramYouTube, and TikTok!
The Greenfield Players
A Midsummer Night's Dream Auditions

Feb 26 and 28 at 6:00 PM
Greenfield Middle School, 195 Federal Street, Greenfield, MA

The Greenfield Players, in Collaboration with the Greenfield Recreation Department, are proud to announce auditions for William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night's Dream. Auditions will be held at 6:00 PM on February 26th AND February 28th at the Greenfield Middle School, 195 Federal Street, Greenfield, MA. Be prepared to perform a monologue of your choice. It does not have to be memorized. If you do not have one, we will have some provided. We ask that you fill out this form: If you have any additional questions, or need to submit a video audition, please contact us at Show dates are scheduled for June 8th, 9th, 14th, 15th and 16th with a total of 6 shows outside at the Greenfield Energy Park.

More information
Calling all Valley actors! Help raise the curtain on the Valley Players.

On Sunday, April 28, 12pm-3pm, the Valley Players will hold its first Sceneathon—an evening of community, theater, and gourmet dining in downtown Amherst. The Sceneathon is the inaugural fundraising event for the Valley Players and an opportunity to showcase some of the tremendous acting talent here in the Valley.

Any and all actors are welcome to sign-up to be a part of the show and to stage a scene or speech from a play of their choice. Participating performers will gather donations from people willing to sponsor their appearance in the show. Sponsorship donations can be in any amount and are tax-deductible. The performer with the highest donation total by the day of the show will get 4 complimentary tickets to a future Valley Players production of their choice.

To sign up and receive a pledge form, email with:
1.) the names of the people who will be performing and everyone’s contact info;
2.) the play, act and scene from which the scene/speech comes;
3.) the approximate run-time of the scene/speech (no more than 10 minutes).

100% of donations raised will go to support the programming and mission of the Valley Players, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to enriching the quality of life in the Connecticut River Valley region of Massachusetts by producing high-quality community theater and related arts, education, and cultural programming.

For more information about the Valley Players, to sign-up for the group’s contact list, or to make a donation, visit, email, or call 413-252-2979.
Holyoke Community College Theater seeks a director for its fall 2024 production. Auditions September 11th and 12th, Closing performance November 23rd. Title will be selected in consultation with the director. Fee $3000. Rehearsals tbd, primarily weekday afternoons. Local applicants only. HCC cannot provide travel or housing. Send resume and cover letter to
You are being invited to participate in a research study titled When Artists Thrive, Communities Thrive: A Cultural Plan Blueprint for the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission. The purpose of the study is to learn the needs of individual artists in the Pioneer Valley (defined as 43 towns in Hampshire and Hampden counties), and what their towns and region could do to support them. The blueprint will be a set of recommendations on cultural planning centered around the needs of individual artists, and the results of this survey will help set the stage for future projects and initiatives that will work to support the region's creative community.

The survey should take about 10-15 minutes to complete. Anyone, over the age of 18, who identifies as an artist and lives in Hampshire or Hampden counties, is eligible to take this survey. If you agree to be in the study and later change your mind, you may drop out at any time.

Survey link:
The Brick House Community Resource Center, sponsored by Mass Cultural Council
Youth Theatre Improv Series at The Brick House

Friday, February 16th- Friday, May 31st, 2024
The Brick House Community Resource Center, 24 3rd St. Turners Falls, MA 01376

The Brick House’s Youth Theatre Improv Series is a 16-week creative exploration for youth ages 11+ in the Franklin County area beginning in February 2024. If you are curious about learning & exploring comedy improv, character-making, puppetry, film-making, social justice, and more as a way to connect and create with peers, this series is for you!

No experience or background in theatre or performance is required. This experience is FREE and includes snacks and tix to local theatre, generously funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Where: The Brick House Community Resource Center @ 24 #3rd St. Turners Falls, MA (1st floor, wheel-chair accessible)

When: Weekly on Fridays, 4-5:30pm, running February 16th-May 31st 2024.

Who: For Youth 11 + are welcome! Co-facilitated by local healing arts facilitator, Kaia Jackson and Happier Valley Comedy Trained Allison Reding!

Registration Link:; contact Kaia at with questions!

Worried about Covid-19? We hear you.
Community health is a priority to us. This group will follow all policies adopted by The Brick House to proactively address COVID concerns. Masks and hand sanitizer will be provided. We will be going above and beyond state guidelines to ensure the healthiest space possible for our participants, and sustain ongoing communication with youth and families as policies evolve to meet community needs.
Actors WorkOut
Scene Studies Class
February 19 at 6:00 PM - 8 Mondays through April 8
Bombyx Center for Arts and Equity, 130 Pine Street, Northampton, MA. 01062

This class is designed to free the actor's creative spirit and to nurture innovation, openness and courage.  It is the arena where the most dynamic growth happens for actors.  While scene study is the focus of this class, it is always with an eye to the growth and development of the individual artist. Participation is limited to 16 students.

Riotous Youth will offer a three-day session in February for students ages seven through 11 

Shakespeare & Company has announced that it will hold a new Winter Session of its Riotous Youth theater program for students ages seven through 11, Tuesday, Feb. 20 through Friday, Feb. 23, coinciding with Massachusetts and New York Public Schools winter breaks.

Riotous Youth introduces students to Shakespeare’s language, stories, characters, and themes using imaginative and playful methods that incorporate voice, movement, and acting. This fast-paced, four-day session will focus on Shakespeare’s The Tempest, culminating with a performance piece shared with family, friends, and Shakespeare & Company staff on the final day of the session.

Winter Session Riotous Youth is held at the Shakespeare & Company campus at 70 Kemble Street, Lenox, Mass. Tuition is $325, and limited financial aid is available. 

Registration is open now; for more information or to apply, visit, or contact Education Residency and Riotous Youth Programs Manager Caitlin Kraft at or (413) 637-1199 ext. 132.

Happier Valley Comedy
An Improviser's Guide to Mindfulness

Feb 20, 2024 at 5:30 PM
Every Tuesdays for 8 weeks
Happier Valley Comedy, 1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley

Happier Valley Comedy founder Pam Victor guides you on a joyful exploration of mindfulness through individual and shared practice and play ... and you help shape the curriculum. Each participant selects from a list of themes, such as ease, presence, curiosity, compassion, acceptance, letting go, feeling our feelings, play, gratitude, authenticity, and more. And Pam builds the eight-week session around the most requested themes, which we investigate through improv games, guided meditations, and discussion. Yep, it's a choose-your-own adventure in mindfulness! Let's spend some thoughtful and fun time together enjoying the places where mindfulness and improv meet!
Happier Valley Comedy
Seeds of Storytelling with Robert Weinstein

Mar 9, 2024 at 12:00 PM
Happier Valley Comedy, 1 Mill Valley Rd, Hadley

Tell your story! This workshop will explore the basic elements of Moth-style storytelling using verbal, written, and illustration exercises. It is designed to teach you how to take personal experiences from your life and create material that connects with audiences. You will also learn techniques that lead to a real and truthful stage presence so that you can show how your unique perspectives can reveal the meanings behind your experiences. This is a great chance for you to dip your toe into the Storytelling waters, or if you've already taken another storytelling class, here is another perspective with a dedicated focus on your story! And come see Robert telling his own stories to inspire the improv later that night with 2nd Saturdays Presents! Prerequisite: None! All are welcome.

More information.

The Montague Shakespeare Festival is proud to announce its inaugural season, from March 18 to April 7, at the Shea Theater Arts Center at 71 Avenue A in Turners Falls, MA. This three-week celebration of Shakespeare's timeless works will feature a series of workshops, professional training sessions, and the staging of A Midsummer Night's Dream. The festival is under the artistic direction of Nia Lynn, who brings her experience as voice coach and text coach for the Royal Shakespeare Company (Stratford-upon-Avon) to her role leading the Montague Shakespeare Festival.

With more than 18 years of experience, Nia Lynn has honed the talents of professional actors on some of the most renowned stages globally. Her career spans prestigious institutions such as the Royal Shakespeare Company, Donmar Warehouse, London's Young Vic, Horace Mann School in New York, Connecticut's Eugene O'Neill Theatre, and the Fonact School of Acting in France. Nia's expertise encompasses a comprehensive approach to performance, combining voice coaching, body and breath work, and accent and dialect training, making her a sought-after mentor in film, theater, and television.

In the debut season of the Montague Shakespeare Festival, Nia Lynn will lead a series of immersive workshops designed to delve into the intricacies of Shakespearean language. Maggie O’Connor Moore is the Associate Artistic Director. 

*Performers and stage craft professionals interested in being part of A Midsummer Night’s Dream are encouraged to join the ZOOM call with Nia and Maggie: Saturday, February 10 at 11am EST. on the website 


Workshop Information:

Space for the following workshops is limited. Discount applies for enrolling in more than one workshop.

Monday, March 18 @ 6:30-8:30pm
Mastering Verse Like A Pro
A 2-hour session to demystify the rhythms and structures of Shakespearean verse. This workshop is designed to help participants find their groove in verse speaking, navigating the complexities of pentameter, trochees, prose, and blank verse. $125 ENROLL

Wednesday, March 20 @ 6:30-9:30pm
Ensemble Building: The Power of Words and Play in Theatre
The art of ensemble theatre through a unique lens. This 3-hour workshop is about the mechanics of collaboration and the profound relationship between language, personal interpretation, and collective creation. $125 ENROLL

Friday, March 22 @ 9:30-3:30pm
Shakespeare in the Classroom: An Educators Retreat!
A dynamic 6-hour workshop tailored for English and drama teachers.
$500. Includes lunch. ENROLL

Workshop Overview:
Innovative Teaching Techniques: Learn creative strategies to introduce Shakespeare’s works in a way that captivates and connects with students of various age groups.

Analyzing Shakespeare with Fun: Discover methods to analyze Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets that are both enjoyable and educational, fostering a deeper appreciation and understanding among students.

Practical Classroom Activities: The workshop includes various hands-on activities that can be directly applied in the classroom, making the learning process interactive and enjoyable.

Workshop Highlights:

Engagement Without Glossaries: Explore how to teach Shakespeare’s language and themes without relying heavily on glossaries, making his works more approachable and relatable for students.

Interactive Learning Approaches: Dive into interactive teaching methods that encourage active student participation, discussion, and exploration.

Building the Perfect Essay: Gain insights into guiding students to write insightful and original essays on Shakespeare’s works derived from their own understanding and enjoyment of the text.

Why Attend?

“Shakespeare in the Classroom” is more than just a professional development session; it’s an opportunity to transform how Shakespeare is taught and perceived in educational settings. This workshop aims to break down the barriers that often make Shakespeare’s works seem daunting to students, replacing them with a sense of excitement and discovery.

Saturday, March 23 @ 9:30-11:30am
Making Shakespeare Your Own: A Personal Approach to the Bard
This workshop is designed to help you understand how to make Shakespeare’s language sound natural and relevant, taking it off the pedestal and into your own voice and experience. $125 ENROLL

Monday, 25 @ 6:30-8:30pm
Character Development: Bringing Shakespeare’s Characters to Life
In theatre, embodying a character is both an art and a science, especially in Shakespeare’s complex and layered characters. $125 ENROLL

Tuesday, March 26 @ 6:30-8:30pm
The Art of Speaking Shakespeare’s Sonnets
In this focused session, participants will be able to immerse themselves in the poetic world of Shakespeare’s sonnets. $125 ENROLL

The Montague Shakespeare Festival is envisioned by Executive Director Kenny Butler. Proceeds will benefit the Shea Theater Arts Center. This vibrant celebration of Shakespeare's work is made possible through the collaborative efforts of the Shea Theater, RiverCulture, and the generous support of The Amherst Cultural Council and a Mass Cultural Council Festival Grant.

Registration is open now for Riotous Youth, Shakespeare & Company’s summer theater program for children and teenagers, slated to run from Monday, July 1 to Friday, August 16.

These one-, two-, and three-week sessions are tailored to different age groups, introducing participants ages seven to 17 to the language, stories, characters, and ideas in Shakespeare’s plays through imaginative and playful methods. Exercises and games incorporating voice, movement, and acting enable participants to explore Shakespeare’s text emotionally, physically, and intellectually. Participants then create a performance piece based on their experience of the play, which they share with family, friends, and Company members on the final day of each session.

2024 summer sessions include:

One-week session

Julius Caesar: August 12 – 16

For Ages: 7 – 12 

Tuition: $425

Two-week sessions

Twelfth Night: July 1 – 12 (sessions A and B are waitlist only)

Henry V: July 15 – 26 (session D: limited spots available)

Love's Labor’s Lost: July 29 – August 9 (sessions G and H: limited spots available)

For Ages: 7 – 15

Tuition: $825

Three-week sessions 

Riotous Company

For Ages: 14 – 17

Tuition: $1075

All sessions are held at the Shakespeare & Company campus at 70 Kemble Street, Lenox, Mass., and limited financial aid is available. Visit to learn more and apply. For more information, contact Education Residency and Riotous Youth Programs Manager Caitlin Kraft at or (413) 637-1199 ext. 132. 

The Shea Theater offers TWO two week sessions of summer theater with Atticus and Enzo Belmonte for children ages 8-12.

Each day of the program will be dedicated to creating and rehearsing the immersive theater performance, as well as learning and participating in various acting games and workshops.

The cost is $650 per session with a limit of 20 children in each section. This fee includes snacks but not lunch. To register:

July 8-19, 2024 and
July 22-August 2, 2024
Monday - Friday

Program runs 9 AM to 3 PM. Performance of the immersive play will take place on the second Friday at 10 am at the Shea on 71 Avenue A, Turners Falls, MA.

In this program, the performers will rehearse and perform in an immersive theater show based on a fairytale, a Shakespeare play, or a myth. This immersive approach encourages imagination, collaboration, and creativity while teaching acting and movement techniques in a nurturing and holistic environment.

A check may be made to:
Shea Theater
PO Box 773
Turners Falls, MA 01376

Deposit of $100 is required at registration with remainder due by June 15, 2024

Atticus Belmonte is a writer, director, actor, and theater major at Bard College. He is a founder of Patch Productions that he formed with his brothers and several friends taking his immersive theater pieces to the Shea where they have offered several productions.

Enzo Belmonte is 16 years old and grew up doing theater, specifically Shakespeare and immersive theater. He has a special skill set in technical theater and will create lights and sound for the show.

The medium of Immersive Theater is an innovative theater format allows audience members to wander wherever they wish within a play, finding characters and scenes at their own will in different rooms and spaces. No audience member has the same experience; they all will see different scenes in different locations, piecing together the story as they go.

Registration is now open!

Is your creative kiddo ready for a fun-filled summer of a creating their own fairy tale, channeling their inner wild creature, going on a magical musical adventure, and channeling their inner clown? Does your tween or teen feel that creative spark? Registration is now open for PIC Kids Summer with options to pay in full or a deposit only.

This year we are excited to have offerings for young artists ages 7-11 AND ages 11-15!

For younger artists (ages 7-11) will adventure through the creative process as they explore theater, movement, and music. Each week follows a different theme, and all weeks will culminate in a sharing of the young artists' original work on Fridays at 2:30.

JUL 22-26        Fairy Tale Mash Up!

JUL 29-AUG 2  Growl and Groove

AUG 5-9          Soundscapes and Sorcery

AUG 12-16       Theatrical Clown

9am-3pm each day 


Bombyx Center for Arts and Equity, 130 Pine St, Florence

Older youth artists (ages 11-15) will explore all things ensemble, co-creating a brand new collaborative performance. Using theater games, writing exercises, improvisation, movement, songwriting, and art, participants will draw upon their dreams, original perspectives, and hopes for the future. All of this collaborative fun will culminating in a sharing at 4pm on Friday, August 16th.

AUG 12-16       PIC Kids Ensemble: Our Dreams!​

9:30am-3:30pm each day 


The Workroom at 33 Hawley Street, Northampton

Learn more and register

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

Easthampton Theater Company

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

Valley Players

Ware Community Theatre

Westfield Theatre Group

Wilbraham United Players

World and Eye
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