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Performances

Student Work

Our students take charge to produce works they are excited about, from fully-mounted productions to staged readings to original devised theater pieces and more. These events are usually free and open to the public — check this page as the semester progresses for performance times and reservation details.

2020-2021 School Year

This year, we returned to an idea we had visited in the past, gathering the work produced at the end of the spring semester into a Fringe Festival. The festival encompasses mainstage work (Play Lab) as well as student and class projects, elevating them all into a busy few weeks of theater, including many free offerings, many of them open to the community.

Below are the student works, with those which were included in the Fringe Festival duly noted.


Poster by Kitty Ryan

Late: A Cowboy Song 
by Sarah Ruhl, directed by Iris Sowlat
UMass' Curtain Theater
Performances are March 25 at 7:30pm and March 26 at 2:00pm
Open Dress Performance / Preview: March 24 at 7:30pm 
Sarah Ruhl’s "Late: A Cowboy Song" is a contemporary classic, about figuring out one’s identity and relationships in an expanding world, and navigating having to choose between safety and freedom. When the play begins, the protagonist, Mary, and her husband Crick have a seemingly perfect marriage, with the beginnings of a perfect family. This shifts when Mary meets Red, a “lady cowboy” who plays guitar, teaches Mary how to ride a horse, and exudes a rugged freedom that Mary is now suddenly desperate to find for herself. "Late: A Cowboy Song," is the story of personal awakening, love, and the search to find a sense of self outside the box.
Featuring Ivy Linden-Dionne, Caleb Kovalchik, and Claudia Maurino 
Admission is FREE but seating is limited and reservations are encouraged: https://forms.gle/UUKvDVzAvAHE9NFU9. Proof of vaccination is required. 

Cry Wolf
An audio drama by Shelly Hed
In the small mining town of Rosewood, tensions between the fae and the flesh boil over when the werewolf Lewis siblings are accused of a double homicide. Instinct kicks in, and the town struggles for survival. This three part audio drama explores the nature of fear, and asks the question: who's afraid of the "big, bad wolf"?
An online part of the Fringe Festival, coming in April.

Concert Performance
by Taylor Mickens
April 22 at 7:30 pm in Bromery Center for the Arts Room 413
Part of our Fringe Festival, tickets free, check back for reservation details.

24-Hour Play Project
Produced by Ali Farina
April 23 at 7:30 p.m.
In the Curtain Theater, located in the Randolph W. Bromery Center for the Arts at UMass
Students take on the daunting task of going from a blank page to a staged play in 24 hours. Join us to see the results of their mad creative dash.
Part of our Fringe Festival, tickets free, check back for reservation details.

A Midsummer Night's Dream
by William Shakespeare
Directed and produced by Ivy Linden-Dionne, Claudia Maurino, Kaliska Wiley, and Madeline Choiniere Barr
April 29 at 7:30 p.m., April 30 at 2 p.m. in the Curtain Theater
Part of our Fringe Festival, tickets free, check back for reservation details.

The Other America
Written by Pedro Eiras, inspired by Nobel Prize Winner Dario Fo's Johan Padan and The Discovery of the Americas
May 1 at 2 p.m.
The Curtain Theater, Randolph W. Bromery Center for the Arts
The Other America is inspired by Nobel Prize winner Dario Fo’s Johan Padan and The Discovery of the Americas, but instead of telling the story of a stowaway in the 17th century who ends up in a whole different continent, it tells the story of João da Silva, a young man who leaves Brazil to start a new life in the United States of America in the year 2025.
In his epic, difficult and often-times comedic journey, João encounters the many extraordinary challenges that all immigrants face as they cross the border towards the land of opportunity, freedom, and bravery… only to discover that there is another America, one in which opportunity is only for a very few, freedom often unattainable, and bravery an act of daily survival. 
Part of our Fringe Festival, tickets free, check back for reservation details.

Webgirl
by Sena Yacteen
May 6 & 7 at 7:30 p.m., May 7 at 2 p.m. and May 8 time TBA in the Curtain Theater
Part of our Fringe Festival, tickets free, check back for reservation details.

 

Past Productions and Events, 2020-2021 School Year

Due to the pandemic, students did not present independent productions during this school year.

Past Productions and Events, 2019-2020 School Year

In 2019-2020, we decided to schedule our season so that the end of the semester left our spaces open for students to mount their own work in a compressed series that was a sort of Fringe Festival. Students were able to apply for a small amount of financial support from the department.

Below is the schedule of events poster for the Fall 2019 Fringe Fest. There was no Fringe Fest in Spring 2020 due to the pandemic.

A listing of Fringe Fest Events for Fall 2019

Past Productions and Events, 2018-2019 School Year

Below are photos and a listing of events produced by students during the 2018-2019 school year.

student small model of stage set

Click to view a selection of images from several student works produced during the 2018-2019 school year.

Queer and Now: Sync or Swim

QUEER & NOW is a devised physical theater project that fuses drag, lip syncing, choreography, and gender play to create an evening of celebration and protest. Sync or Swim is the second installment of the series, combining ancient world mythologies with contemporary pop music to create a tapestry of our impending new queer world. From fresh takes on Mami Wata and Demeter, to Narcissus and the Selkies, QUEER & NOW: Sync or Swim embraces our possible future through queering the past. wearequeerandnow.com 

Dec. 6 & 7 @ 7:30, Dec. 7 & 8 at 10:00
UMass Fine Arts Center Arts Bridge, Room 434

April 4-6
NYPOP, New York City
This event was made possible (in part) by grants from the UMass Arts Council and the Commonwealth Honors College.

Red

by John Logan
Directed by Kayla Theresa Marshall and Kevin Lundstrom
Fine Arts Center Room 204
Thursday April 18th @ 7pm
Friday, April 19th @ 7pm

Master abstract expressionist Mark Rothko has just landed the biggest commission in the history of modern art, a series of murals for New York’s famed Four Seasons Restaurant. In the two fascinating years that follow, Rothko works feverishly with his young assistant, Ken, in his studio on the Bowery. But when Ken gains the confidence to challenge him, Rothko faces the agonizing possibility that his crowning achievement could also become his undoing. Raw and provocative, RED is a searing portrait of an artist's ambition and vulnerability as he tries to create a definitive work for an extraordinary setting. 

Gira

created by Lucas La Guardia
Fine Arts Center Room 204 
April 26 @ 8:30pm
April 27 @ 7:30pm and 9:00pm.

GIRA! is a ritualistic performance that uses dance, music, and storytelling to tell the story of the Orixás, the deities celebrated in Umbanda - a religion rooted in West-African Yoruba cosmology. 
GIRA! is an invitation to embark in a journey of self-discovery and community building. Umbanda is a communal practice by nature and we hope to dismantle the separation between audience and performers by inviting you into our ritual. 
Come join us for a night of celebration and kinship! 

Bare

Book by JON HARTMERE and DAMON INTRABARTOLO
Music by DAMON INTRABARTOLO
Lyrics by JON HARTMERE
Friday, April 26th at 6:00pm
Saturday, April 27th at 12:00pm and 8:00pm
UMass Amherst Curtain Theater — 151 Presidents Drive, Amherst, MA 01003 

“Bare” is presented through special arrangement with and all authorized performance materials are supplied by
Theatrical Rights Worldwide, 1180 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 640, New York, NY 10036. www.theatricalrights.com
This program made possible (in part) by UMass Arts Council.
Please note that this show contains themes of violence, drug use, intense language, sex, and death. Suggested audience member age is high school and up. 

The Revolutionists

UMass Amherst FAC 204
Monday, April 29th @ 7:30pm.
Free Admission (limited seating).
This is an enhanced staged reading.

Directed by ERIN NICOLE EGGERS
Featuring:
MAEGAN CLEARWOOD as Charlotte Cordray
JACQUI DUPRÉ as Olympe de Gouges
TATIANA GODFREY as Marianne Angelle
MICHAELA KELLY as Marie Antoinette

A reading. A song. A guillotine. 
Four beautiful, badass women lose their heads in this irreverent, girl-powered comedy set during the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror.

even if we don't know it now

A new performance text by choreographer/ filmmaker/ omni-artist Wendy Woodson, directed by Gabriel Harrell will be shown Sunday, April 28th at 8pm in Webster Hall, studio 3, at Amherst College.

The performance, a workshopping of Woodson’s layered new text, asks Thespis to step back into the circular swirl of his communal roots while addressing themes of companionship, mortality and the intricacies and contradictions of Woodson’s idiosyncratic artistic process.
Harrell’s treatment mines a rich tapestry of surprising visuals, at times operating in concert with the text and in other moments creating a peculiar friction, as the visual and textual narratives seem to move in contradictory directions. The result is a form of visual/ textual polyrhythm demanding a brand of active audience engagement not commonly called for. 
text by Wendy Woodson
direction by Gabriel Harrell
performance by Clare Sommah, MarHadoo Jones, Hudson Maeve Smith and Callum Pommeroi LaFrance
review by Merceid Duval 

Performance Night Series

Vishnupad Barve as a part of PERFORMANCE NIGHT SERIES is collaborating with Nima Nikakhlagh to perform an action responding to the recent arrest of artists on UMASS Campus.

Date: Tuesday, 30th April 2019
Venue: Studio Art Building Leg gallery
Time: 7:30 pm
Note: PERFORMANCE NIGHT SERIES begins at 6:00 pm.

Artist performing as a part of series: Avery Forbes, Bibian Medkova, Chaehee Yoon, Yuan Pham, Chenda Cope, Nima Nikakhlagh, Vishnupad Barve

Next to Normal

Music by Tom Kitt
Book and Lyrics by Brian Yorkey
May 4th at 1:30pm and 7:30pm
May 5th at 1:30pm.
Next to Normal follows Diana Goodman, wife and mother, diagnosed with bipolar depression after a traumatic event. 
"Next to Normal" was presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI, 423 West 55th Street, New York, NY 10019
This show was made possible in part by the UMass Arts Council.
 

Echo Chamber

An interactive sound installation about living with anxiety & panic

Created and conceived by Alexander Blaustein  

PREVIEW: May 3, 5-10 p.m.
May 5, 11-9
Fine Arts Center Room 204
This work was made possible by a generous grant from the UMass Arts Council.


Past Productions and Events, 2017-2018 School Year

Below are photos and a listing of events produced by students during the 2017-2018 school year.

student small model of stage set

Click to view a selection of images from several student works produced during the 2017-2018 school year.

THICK SKIN     
Directed by Gustavo Torres
Nov. 15, 16  @ 8pm
Nov. 29, 30   @8pm
235 E. Hadley Road
"In a generation that couldn't be more liberal and accepting, Thick Skin looks at who really controls the conversation, and whether good intentions are always enough." 

QUEER AND NOW
Devised by company
Directed by Garrett Sager
Dec. 1 @ 7:00pm and 9:30pm
Dec. 2 @ 7:00pm
French Hall Room 102
"Conceived by director Garrett Sager in response to the increased anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric in American culture, QUEER & NOW disrupts oppressive narratives through the celebration of queerness as an act of radical dissent."

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN
Devised by company
Directed by Jen Onopa
Dec. 4th @ 5:30pm
Old Chapel auditorium
An interview-based theatrical collaboration between UMass Theater students and the UMass Veteran Resource Center looking at the unique experiences that veterans have had while integrating into campus life.   

JESUS HOPPED THE A TRAIN
By Stephen Adly Guirguis
Directed by Tatiana M. Rodriguez and Tyler DiBenedetto
Dec. 14, 15, 16 @7:30pm
Artsbridge (FAC 4th floor)
"A critically acclaimed piece which focuses on criminal justice and mass incarceration, while exploring moral culpability and religious faith."

CARRIE THE MUSICAL
Directed by Erin Hamilton
Jan. 26, 27
Old Chapel

A NUMBER
by Caryl Churchill
A reading directed by Garrett Sager
Feb. 5 & 6 at 7:30
Room 204, Fine Arts Center

QUEER & NOW
Friday, March 2 at 9:30
Saturday, March 3 at 7:00 & 9:30
Fine Arts Center Room 204
A Lip Sync Spectacular returns to UMass this March! QUEER & NOW is a new theatrical event that fuses drag, lip syncing, music, poetry, choreography, and gender play to create an evening of celebration and protest. Conceived in response to the increasing anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric in American culture, QUEER & NOW disrupts oppressive narratives through the celebration of queerness as a radical act. 

1675 
A new musical by Jasmine Goodspeed
March 30 at 7 p.m.
March 31 at 2 and 7 p.m.
Fine Arts Center Room 204
A new musical about the tragedy of Deer Island

SIS! HOW'D YOU GET THERE!
A screening of a documentary and a photo art gallery by Sabine Jacques
April 27 at 7 p.m.
New Africa House

ONE SPANISH EYE
A new devised dance theatre piece directed by Jasmine Mary Caamaño
Performance dates: April 27&28 at 7:30 p.m.
FAC Room 204

MUSICAL THEATER CLASS SHOWCASE
Monday, April 30 at 7:30pm
The Curtain Theater 

PRIDE GOETH BEFORE THE FALL
A thesis project by Devon Lennon — a contemporary adaptation of "The Persians" by Aeschylus
Tuesday, May 1st at 7:30
FAC Room 204

SPELL #7
By Ntozake Shange
Directed by Sabrina Victor
Performance dates: May 3, 4, 5
Upper Rand Studio
A choreopoem for the stage

RITE OF PASSAGE
By Izzy Salant
Directed by Andrew Kim
May 4 & 5 at 7:30, May 5 at 2
Fine Arts Center Room 204
David Greenbaum, a Jewish journalist in his late 50s, has just lost his wife, Maura, to suicide. He is now faced with the task of raising his son, Harold, who has mild autism, on his own, in the middle of planning for his Bar Mitzvah.

PLAY IN THE WOODS
Claudia Nolan’s MFA Thesis
May 5, 2-4 p.m.
Amethyst Brook Conservation Area, Amherst, MA
Come any time between 2 and 4pm and wander through the woods to experience som personal stories about fairytales.

35MM: A MUSICAL EXHIBITION
Directed by Erin Hamilton
Music direction by Sean Sanford
Performance dates: May 5 and 6
Curtain Theater

UNGROUNDING
Gabriel Harrell and Vishnupad Barve
May 6 at 4:30 p.m.
Park Hill Orchard in Easthampton 

DETONATED LANGUAGE SHOWCASE
Extremely explosive theatrical material
May 7 at 7:30 p.m.
The Curtain Theate