SEASON 8 (2018-19)
Rhode Island Premiere
SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE adapted for the stage by LEE HALL
From the screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard (August 24-September 16)
Young Will Shakespeare has writer's block... the deadline for his new play is fast approaching but he's in desperate need of inspiration. That is, until he finds his muse – Viola. This beautiful young woman is Will’s greatest admirer and will stop at nothing (including breaking the law) to appear in his next play. Against a bustling background of mistaken identity, ruthless scheming and backstage theatrics, Will’s love for Viola quickly blossoms and inspires him to write his greatest masterpiece.
“Funny, often genuinley moving, and generates a glow you could warm your hands by...The best British comedy since One Man, Two Guvnors and deserves equal success.”
– Daily Telegraph
"Marvelously fluid, riotously funny, and often intensely, even startlingly poignant...This may be, in part at least, a comedy about Shakespeare falling in love; but joking aside, it could just make you fall, all over again, in love with Shakespeare.”
– Chicago Tribune
THE HYPOCHONDRIAC by Jean-Baptiste Moliere (November 9 –December 2)
Moliere's classic farce pokes fun at Argan, a man so obsessed by his own imaginary ailments that he can no longer control his haphazard household or the mercenary medics he employs. With doctors determined to grow fat from the profits of his condition, Argan's closest relatives battle to show him the truth of his situation. Using elaborate trickery, they strive to cure the real disease from which he suffers, managing to pile confusion upon hilarious confusion.
“Fundamental French farce…The show's virtue, however, is its fidelity to Molière in combining broad-bottomed farce with an assault on the morbid egotism of those for whom illness becomes a way of life.” – The Guardian
WINTER REP (January 18 – February 24)
THIS IS OUR YOUTH by Kenneth Lonergan
[award winning screenwriter of Manchester by the Sea]
In 1982, on Manhattan's Upper West Side, the wealthy, articulate potsmoking teenagers who were small children in the '60s have emerged as young adults in a country that has just resoundingly rejected everything they were brought up to believe in. The very last wave of New York City's '60s-style Liberalism has come of age—and there's nowhere left to go. In meticulous, hilarious, and agonizing detail, THIS IS OUR YOUTH is a living snapshot of the moment between adolescence and adulthood when many young people first go out into the world on their own, armed only with the ideas and techniques they developed as teenagers—ideas and techniques far more sophisticated than their parents ever realize, and far less effectual than they themselves can possibly imagine.
“A rambunctious and witty play about wayward teenagers and postadolescents that doesn't turn youthful travails into plastic rap…THIS IS OUR YOUTH—by turns caustic, cruel and compassionate—is the real real world.”
- New York Times
“This is quite simply, a sterling example of why we keep going…THIS IS OUR YOUTH is as good as theater gets.”
- NY Daily News
Rhode Island Premiere
THOM PAIN [BASED ON NOTHING] by Will Eno
[Finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize]
He's just like you, except worse. He is trying to save his life, to save your life—in that order. In his quest for salvation, he'll stop at nothing, be distracted by nothing, except maybe a piece of lint, or the woman in the second row.
“Astonishing in its impact…It's one of those treasured nights in the theatre —treasured nights anywhere, for that matter—that can leave you both breathless with exhilaration and, depending on your sensitivity to meditations on the bleak and beautiful mysteries of human experience, in a puddle of tears. Also in stitches, here and there. Mr. Eno is a Samuel Beckett for the John Stewart generation…To sum up the more or less indescribable: THOM PAIN is at bottom a surreal meditation on the empty promises life makes, the way experience never lives up to the weird and awesome fact of being. But it is also, in its odd, bewitching beauty, an affirmation of life's worth…a small masterpiece.”
- New York Times
OUR TOWN by Thornton Wilder (March 15- April 7)
[Pulitzer Prize Winner]
Described by Edward Albee as “…the greatest American play ever written,” the story follows the small town of Grover’s Corners through three acts: “Daily Life,” “Love and Marriage,” and “Death and Eternity.” Narrated by a stage manager and performed with minimal props and sets, audiences follow the Webb and Gibbs families as their children fall in love, marry, and eventually – in one of the most famous scenes in American theatre – die. Thornton Wilder’s final word on how he wanted his play performed is an invaluable addition to the American stage and to the libraries of theatre lovers internationally. This Pulitzer Prize-winning drama of life in the small village of Grover's Corners, an allegorical representation of all life, has become a classic.
"Beautiful and remarkable one of the sagest, warmest and most deeply human scripts to have come out of our theatre [...] A spiritual experience." - New York Post
"Thornton Wilder's masterpiece [...] An immortal tale of small town morality [and] [...] a classic of soft spoken theater." - The New York Times
Rhode Island Premiere
POLAROID STORIES by Naomi Iizuka (April 26-May 19)
A visceral blend of classical mythology and real life stories told by street kids, Naomi lizuka's Polaroid Storiesjourneys
into a dangerous world where myth-making fulfills a fierce need for transcendence, where storytelling has the power to transform a reality in which characters' lives are continually threatened, devalued and effaced. Inspired in part by Ovid's Metamorphoses, Iizuka's Polaroid Stories takes place on an abandoned pier on the outermost edge of a city, a way stop for dreamers, dealers and desperadoes, a no-man's land where runaways seek camaraderie, refuge and escape. Serpentine routes from the street to the heart characterize the interactions in this spellbinding tale of young people pushed to society's fringe. Informed, as well, by interviews with young prostitutes and street kids, Polaroid Stories conveys a whirlwind of psychic disturbance, confusion and longing. Like their mythic counterparts, these modem-day mortals are engulfed by needs that burn and consume. Their language mixes poetry and profanity, imbuing the play with lyricism and great theatrical force.
“Visceral… if anything, what the show gives is piercing, painful honesty.” – Time Out New York
“Polaroid Stories is a well written dark drama which speaks about some of the heavy issues in the lives of street youth in the city. This not a heartwarming story, but a dark social commentary from a very up close and personal viewpoint.”
– Chicago Critic
Plays and dates are subject to change