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In this Obie Award-winning and beautifully crafted piece, Amy Herzog gives us Vera and Leo, a grandmother and grandson, locked in a moving and most amusing battle of wits. Life has dealt them a series of shocks, yet they and two intrepid young women continue to seek meaning through human contact in a touching and humorous portrait of the disenfranchised.
Amber and Tom are freshmen at Princeton University, where their experiences so far have only two things in common: drunken parties and a desire to fit in. But when they meet, their common experience becomes anything but, and their moral mettle is put to the test. Lileana Blain-Cruz directs Anna Ziegler's deeply felt and relevant world-premiere play about intimacy and responsibility, power and provocation, privilege and protocol.
Celebrated playwright Joseph Kesselring's most successful play, Arsenic and Old Lace is a sidesplitting, farcical tale. Filled with colorful characters and witty plot twists, this quirky comedy that premiered on Broadway in 1941 is one for the ages. This production is directed by Tony Award-nominated Gregg Edelman (1776).
Good-hearted drama critic Mortimer Brewster appears to lead a normal, happy life. Recently engaged to be married, Mortimer plans a trip to visit his charming spinster aunts, Abby and Martha Brewster. However, shortly after Mortimer's arrival, he discovers that his innocent aunts have a deadly secret buried in the basement — about a dozen older gentlemen. To Mortimer's dismay, Abby and Martha deem their poisonous habits to be charitable acts, convinced that they are putting these men out of their misery. Attempting to protect society without sending Abby and Martha to prison, Mortimer tries to rein in his crazy aunts along with his brothers — Theodore, who believes he is Theodore Roosevelt, and maniacal, murderous Jonathan.
"It's just that if you can't deal with people, you have to make a start somewhere. With animals. Don't you see? A person has to find a way of dealing with something. If not with people...something." Written by Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright Edward Albee, At Home at the Zoo (Zoo Story) delves deep into the complex concept of human loneliness and social disparity. Directed by Eric Hill, At Home at the Zoo (Zoo Story) joins Albee's classic play The Zoo Story (1959) with its prequel, Homelife, written 45 years later.
Set in New York City, Homelife opens with a look inside the isolated marriage of wealthy textbook company executive Peter and his articulate Upper East Side wife Ann. Unable to communicate their feelings to each other, the foundation of their marriage is built on unspoken agreements. Somehow they find comfort in their boring relationship, yet they are never truly on the same page.
The Zoo Story follows Peter to Central Park. While sitting on a park bench, Peter encounters a forlorn and forsaken stranger named. This stranger, who appears desperate for human contact and connection, forces Peter to listen to his stories as he digs deep into Peter's life and his own.
Must the Promised Land necessarily become cursed and haunted? It is possible to stop moral downfall and pursue happiness instead? In his eye-opening play, Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy Letts reveals the secrets of an American family defeated by its mistakes and avalanching toward its final disintegration. Family members gather to discover how far apart they've grown and how dysfunctional their lives have become. Directed by Professor Sangare, this theatrical production will examine contemporary relationships and investigate personal and social values. Relationships can be healed when people meet not merely to join the reunion, but to reunite. Awareness can be awakened, integrity reclaimed, and core values restored—if it isn't too late.
Fringe First Award Winner Baba Brinkman is the world's first and only "peer reviewed rapper,"bringing science to the masses with his unique brand of hip-hop comedy theatrics. In Rap Guide to Climate Chaos, Brinkman breaks down the politics, economics, and science of global warming, following its surprising twists from the carbon cycle to the energy economy.
A trailblazer in the genre of "lit-hop"—he has created hip-hop adaptations of The Canterbury Tales, Beowulf, and Gilgamesh—Brinkman is also an award-winning playwright, a former tree-planter who has personally planted more than one million trees, and a Friend of Darwin Award winner (for his efforts to improve the public understanding of evolutionary biology) who has opened for Stephen Hawking.
This suspense-filled adaptation Daphne du Maurier's chilling short story (the basis for Alfred Hitchcock's legendary film) by acclaimed Irish playwright Conor McPherson is an emotionally stirring, atmospheric thriller. Mysterious masses of birds have begun to attack at high tide, driving strangers Nat and Diane to take refuge in an isolated, abandoned cabin and to bond as they deal with their haunting new circumstances. Yet if two is company, three is a crowd, as the sudden arrival of a young woman with a mysterious background ruffles feathers and quickly threatens to destroy their would-be sanctuary.
After joining the staff at a school for the deaf, a speech therapist with an unorthodox approach to education, James, played by Joshua Jackson, becomes infatuated by Sarah, a vivacious, yet delicate, deaf woman, played by Lauren Ridloff. James tries to help Sarah, a school dropout, navigate her way through the hearing world; however, Sarah finds solace in her sphere of silence. Yearning to understand each other, yet set in their ways, a romance unfolds as the two attempt to communicate their heart's desires not only to one another, but with world around them.
Select performances will include an ASL interpreter.
Tony Award nominee Jessica Hecht leads the cast in this heartfelt comedy by Pulitzer Prize finalist Sarah Ruhl. Lane, an accomplished physician, discovers that her sister Virginia (Hecht) — not her Brazilian housekeeper Matilde — has been cleaning her home every day. Though never close, suddenly the sisters find themselves enmeshed in each other's lives and in Matilde's great passion for Portuguese jokes. Rebecca Taichman directs this expressive and lyrical comedy about learning to live with life's mess.
Winner of six Tony Awards, Stephen Sondheim's groundbreaking musical is a brilliant and wildly funny look at relationships. Over a series of dinner parties, dates, and conversations with his friends, the perennially single Bobby attempts to understand the pros and cons of marriage — and the meaning of the word "commitment."
The heartfelt and poignant two-character drama follows Marianne, a quirky quantum physicist, played by Kate Baldwin, and Roland, a beekeeper, played by Graham Rowat. Their first encounter is seemingly ordinary—crossing paths at a mutual friend's barbeque. Exploring the endless possibilities of their budding romance, the characters create their own multi-verse to see how their relationship would play out if they had chosen fate over chance.
A rarely performed story of intrigue and deception in the face of steely resolve, Cymbeline bears the wondrous language of a seasoned Shakespeare through wild plot twists, mistaken identities, and a heartrending quest for love. Tamara Hickey and Jonathan Epstein head the cast, and Tina Packer directs this stunning tale, produced for the first time on the Shakespeare & Company Mainstage.
gas·light (noun): a form of manipulation through persistent denial, misdirection, contradiction, and lying in an attempt to destabilize and delegitimize a target.
Also known as Angel Street, Gaslight is one of the greatest psychological thrillers of all time and was made into a movie starring Ingrid Bergman. It tells the story of Mr. Manningham, a suavely handsome man, who is slowly driving his gentle, devoted wife Bella to the brink of insanity with seemingly overwhelming kindness while sowing seeds of doubt, memory loss, and misperceptions. This play contains some of the most brilliant, suspenseful sequences in modern theater. And in 2017, its themes are nothing if not timely.
This 90-minute thrill ride takes you into the most dangerous place on Earth: parenthood. Two sets of parents meet for the first time to settle their sons' nasty schoolyard tangle. Tensions quickly emerge around the best way to raise a child. The meeting progresses, the liquor flows, and the gloves come off in this viciously funny comedy of bad manners. God of Carnage is a Tony and Olivier Award-winning play by Yasmina Reza, the author of Art.
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage explores the strength of the human spirit through the story of Esther, an African-American seamstress in Manhattan in 1905, when social and class lines were distinctly drawn. A letter arrives, romance is sparked, betrayal is born, and six lives are forever changed. Intimate Apparel is a winner of the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award.
The beloved holiday production returns to Shakespeare & Company, with its live sound effects and rapid character changes. Follow George Bailey as he discovers the value of this wonderful life, guided by "angel, second-class" Clarence, on his own quest to earn his wings.
This production of Kunstler stars Barrington Stage veteran Jeff McCarthy as the self-described "radical lawyer" and civil rights activist William Kunstler. In this revealing play, the colorful, perpetually rumpled defense lawyer whose best-known clients included the Chicago Seven, inmates involved in the Attica prison riots, and members of the American Indian Movement, makes a case for his often unconventional style.
Emmy Award winner and Tony nominee Lonny Price directs an intimate new musical by composer-lyricist Geoff Morrow and book writer Timothy Prager that delivers audiences to the intersection of loyalty, love, and ambition. Back in 1950, film producer Joseph Lindy was on top of the world, making hit after hit with leading lady Billie Hathaway, the love of his life. Nearly four decades later, retired and forgotten, he must approve for release a version of his abandoned cinematic masterpiece, an autobiographical film now altered irrevocably by a young producer. Haunted by the choices he made years ago, Joseph's story hangs in the balance as he reconstructs the film, his memory, and ultimately, his legacy.
Written by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winner David Auburn (Proof), Lost Lake is an engrossing, evocative play. Part drama, part melancholy comedy, Lost Lake relates the story of Veronica and Hogan, imperfect strangers tangled up in each other's lives by circumstance. Veronica, in need of an escape from life's uphill battle, takes her children to a lakeside rental. Unfortunately for her, not only is the property is less than ideal, but it includes a bedraggled and secluded estate owner: Hogan. Both fighting their own battles, the two outcasts find complicated comfort in their shared isolation. Directed by Daisy Walker (Dracula: The Musical), this stirring, unexpected, and visceral play is a recipient of an Edgerton Foundation New American Plays Award.
Four lovers lost in the woods and a group of rude mechanicals who have set out to put on a play become entangled in a dream world. The Fairy Kingdom is at odds, spells are cast, and the devilish sprite Puck weaves his mischief among the mortals. This fast-paced romp is an unforgettable midsummer adventure for the whole family.
A Tony Award-winning jukebox musical and epic night of rock 'n' roll, Million Dollar Quartet brings audiences into the recording studio with icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Jerry Lee Lewis. Based on a true story, Million Dollar Quartet is set on December 4, 1956. It follow those four legendary musicians as they come together for one monumental night of music at Sun Records in Memphis. Directed by James Barry (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), this hit musical includes classic tunes such as "Blue Suede Shoes," "Fever," "Walk the Line," "Sixteen Tons," "Who Do You Love?", "Great Balls of Fire," "Folsom Prison Blues," "Hound Dog," and more.
In 2016, what does it take for an immigrant to achieve the American dream? With humor and humanity, playwright Jason Kim (HBO's Girls) explores this question in a timely world-premiere play. Directed by Danny Sharron and featuring Laila Robins, The Model American follows Gabriel, a young, gay, Colombian man, as he finds friendship, love, and ambition in the U.S. Developed at Williamstown Theatre Festival under the auspices of the Bill Foeller Fellowship Program in 2016, this play questions the price we are willing to pay for success.
You've known Olga, Masha, and Irina for nearly 117 years. But this summer, they are, like, unhappy for reals. Obie Award winner and Drama Desk nominee Trip Cullman directs Outer Critics Circle Award nominee and Theatre World Award winner Halley Feiffer's world premiere: a contemporary adaptation of Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters. As our heroes search for meaning in their work and love lives — all the while dreaming of their dear Moscow — we are invited to examine our own existential longings and unrequited yearnings. Feiffer's bold, unapologetically millennial and bitingly comedic spin on this Russian classic newly reacquaints us with the emotional contours of the beleaguered and beloved Prozorov family. You totes don't want to miss it.
The Music Man is about a con man who ultimately does right by a community. "Professor" Harold Hill's heart opens up through the course of one of America's most beloved musicals. In the magical number "'Till There Was You," audience members recognize that the power of love is greater than all else, and change is always possible. In fact, Harold Hill and the children of River City, Iowa, remind viewers that the ordinary can indeed be changed to the extraordinary.
Set at the dawn of the 20th century, when everything is changing and anything is possible, Ragtime weaves together three distinctly American tales: those of a stifled upper-class wife, a determined Jewish immigrant, and a daring young Harlem musician. All three individuals are united by their courage, compassion, and belief in the American Dream. Winner of Tony Awards for best book and best score, this exhilarating, dazzling musical is a timeless celebration of the American spirit.
Golden Globe and Emmy Award winner S. Epatha Merkerson and Golden Globe and Emmy nominee Jane Kaczmarek star in this absorbing comedy about self-discovery. Empty-nested and alone in her Midwestern home, Sharon (Merkerson) takes on a roommate, Robyn (Kaczmarek), who has just arrived from New York City. Before she has even unpacked, Robyn challenges everything about Sharon's way of life. Book clubs, 1980s pop music, and the occasional shared toke complicate their unlikely but enduring relationship, even as they venture into dangerous territory. Mike Donahue directs Jen Silverman's new play, which celebrates unexpected reinvention later in life.
Sankofa is Williams College's step team founded by two female students in 1996. The now co-ed team performs stepping, a percussive dance form created by black fraternities in the mid-1900s that is influenced by military drill, South African gumboot, West African dance, and hip-hop. The word Sankofa comes from the Akan language of Ghana; in English it means "stepping forward while looking back." Sankofa uses this concept to reach back and stay true to its roots in order to step forward, reflecting the organization's mentality. The highly dynamic team has been known to incorporate everything from pop music and spoken word to breakdance and gymnastics in its choreography in order to create loud, high energy, and incredibly astounding performances.
Taking Steps is a riot of hilarity. Elizabeth, a former dancer, will do anything to escape the overbearing clutches of her rich husband, Roland, who's poised to buy a haunted house (a former brothel). The dithering, confused Kitty, briefly reunited with her deathly boring husband, will go to extraordinary lengths to elude his sleep-inducing presence. Put into the mix an inarticulate solicitor and a builder who's a motorcycle maniac, and you have one of Alan Ayckbourn's funniest and most heartfelt comedies.
Likely the Bard's final piece that he penned alone, The Tempest sets the stage for Prospero, a betrayed magician bent on revenge. Prospero's seething softens, however, when he sees through his daughter that love and forgiveness conquer darkness. Enjoy twilight performances of this play in Shakespeare & Company's new Garden Theatre under the Berkshire summer skies.
This captures the hilarious yet touching relationships of a circle of friends as they back their way into middle age.
Edith Wharton's sublime wit shines through in two delightful one-act comedies, complete with her delectable signature twist. In Roman Fever, Grace and Alida reminisce above the Colosseum, having known each other so well for their entire lives, or so they think. The Fullness of Life reveals that the afterlife, while enchanting, may not be all that it's cracked up to be.
Obie Award winner and Tony nominee Liesl Tommy directs 2016 Williamstown Theatre Festival Playwright-in-Residence Harrison David Rivers' world-premiere play. Mourning the loss of her elder son, Myles, Bethea (Myra Lucretia Taylor) tries to help her younger son through his grief. But as revelations surrounding Myles' incarceration and death emerge, both mother and son must decide whether to fight or let go. With wit and empathy, this play reminds audiences of the courage and resilience it takes to chart a better way forward for the ones we love.