Handbill & Callboard: Theater Studies Through Engagement in Western MA for September

Handbill & Callboard:
September Theater Productions and Call for Auditions in Western MA

Support a love for theater with these featured September theater productions in Western MA! A great way to engage in your community while supporting an interest in theater studies.

Comic Drama and Contemporary Musical at the Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield; Children’s Musical at Ruth B. Smith Auditorium in Orange; Play Festival at A.P.E. Gallery in Northampton; Outdoor Traveling Spectacle with Double Edge Theatre in Springfield.

Through Saturday, September 3. 8pm
AWARD WINNING/COMEDIC DRAMA: Tribes. Winner of the 2012 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play, Tribes is a deeply moving yet comical play about a young man who was born deaf into an unconventional hearing family. When he meets Sylvia, a young woman on the brink of deafness, he finally understands what it means to “speak up” for himself. The play explores the idea of families as “tribes” and highlights how values, beliefs, and language are passed on through generations. Performed on the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage at the Barrington Stage Company. 413-236-8888. 30 Union Street, Pittsfield, MA ($$)

Through Sunday, September 4. 3pm
WORLD PREMIER/CONTEMPORARY MUSICAL: Broadway Bounty Hunter. Inspired by the Blaxploitation movies for the 1970s (think Shaft), this exciting new musical follows a 60-year-old, unemployed actor named Annie as she’s asked to become a bounty hunter and capture a South American warlord. With a score rich with R&B, Funk, and a splash of 80s Rock and Roll, Broadway Bounty Hunter is a musical that follows a woman as she tries to find the inner strength she needs to save theater itself, while realizing her true identity. This world premiere performance gives audiences have the opportunity to experiencing the fresh face of contemporary musical theater! Performances will be held on the St. Germain Stage at the Barrington Stage Company, 413-236-8888. 30 Union Street, Pittsfield, MA. ($$)

Friday, September 9. 8pm-Friday, October 7. 8pm
CHILDREN’S MUSICAL/DISNEY CLASSIC: Beauty and the Beast. Based on the beloved Walt Disney classic of the same name, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of an arrogant young prince and his castle’s servants who fall under the spell of a wicked enchantress, who turns him into the hideous Beast. The only way the spell can be broken is if he learns to love and be loved in return. The story truly begins when the spirited, headstrong village girl Belle enters the Beast’s castle after he imprisons her father Maurice. With the help of his enchanted servants, including the matronly Mrs. Potts and the playful teacup named Chip, Belle begins to draw the cold-hearted Beast out of his isolation. Through the art of song and dance, this timeless tale highlights the importance of remaining true to ourselves and reminds us that real beauty comes from within. The production is presented by the Arena Civic Theatre and performances will be held at The Ruth B. Smith Auditorium in the Orange Town Hall. 6 Prospect Street, Orange, MA. ($$)

 

Thursday, September 15. 7:30pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS: Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. CROWSNEST by Harley Erdman.  In an ecovillage somewhere up in the hills, Danny, a newcomer, arrives at a utopian community divided over its future direction. His friendship with two residents, Sarah and Carl, embroils him in passion, jealousy, secrets, and conspiracy. This play explores the meanings of love, family, and community, in a corner of conteporary America where people striving for utopia put these terms to the extreme test. This will be the first-ever public performance of this brand-new play by Harley Erdman, a UMass theater professor known locally for his librettos for the operas The Garden of Martyrs and The Scarlet Professor. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Friday, September 16. 7:30pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS: Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. THE WINKLEMEYERS BET IT ALL by Mojie Crigler. This play tells the story of one man’s boom and bust during the first wave of big Internet money, and the price he pays for success that continues to elude him. This play, which was originally produced at an obscure, now-defunct theatre festival in New York City, is one of a number of works by Mojie Crigler, whose other plays have been seen at Ensemble Studio Theatre, Magic Theatre, New York Performance Works, and Carnegie Mellon University. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Saturday, September 17. 7:30pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS:
Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. WHERE’S ANNIE? by Eric Henry Sanders. Where’s Annie? Who’s Annie? And what have Jack and Birdie done with her? In this dark comedy, Sarah Bitts returns home to confront her estranged grandparents, only to discover that the eccentric pair hides a past more frightening than she ever imagined. Caught in the couple’s alternately terrifying and bitterly humorous web of riddles, lies, and suspicion, Sarah fights her way to the truth and to her family’s redemption. Originally workshopped at the Lark Play Development Center in New York City, this play was developed in a reading with Frances Sternhagen at the Hudson Stage Company, where it also received its premiere production. This reading offers audiences a first glimpse at a substantially revised version of the play. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Thursday, September 22. 7:30pm; Friday, September 23. 7:30pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS:
Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. NAKED WITH FRUIT by Meryl Cohn. Can three people who share the loss of the same love come together to heal? This play is a comedy about grief and the quest for love and family. Isabel and Marilyn reconsider polyamory as they grieve the death of the secret third member of their intimate relationship. Isabel’s longing to connect inspires desperate measures, including befriending a Rabbi — which leads to more secrets and betrayals. Through a tricky road to recovery, the loss of a shared love may turn out to be a powerful bond. An earlier version of Naked with Fruit was produced at the Provincetown Theater and was a Mass Cultural Council Finalist for playwriting. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Friday, September 23. 7pm; Saturday, September 24. 7pm
LATIN AMERICAN CULTURE/MUSICAL: The Springfield Spectacle. Based on Double Edge’s Once a Blue Moon – Cada Luna Azul, this large-scale outdoor performance features the Double Edge Ensemble and renowned Argentine guest musicians Manuel Uriona (Bersuit Vergarabat) and Micaela Farias Gomez (Santadiabla), and will showcase youth performers from Springfield Conservatory of the Arts Public School. The Springfield Spectacle follows a traveler who returns to his hometown after many years. Memories of his past and stories about the town’s colorful inhabitants evoke reflections about an increasingly universal theme: how progress can displace people. Inspired by Alejandro Jodorowski and other Latin American writers, the show infuses audiences with the excitement of a Latin American carnival, and draws upon memory, culture, and song. The show is free and open to the public, making this celebration of culture accessible to all audiences. The performances will be held at 1350 Main Street, Springfield, MA (FREE)

Saturday, September 24. 7:30pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS: Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. GRIMM WOMEN by Leanna James Blackwell. A radical re-envisioning of three classic fairy tales, this play features a trio of women – a young runaway from a religious community, an adoptive mother living in urban public housing, and a globally successful business owner – telling their stories in a series of impassioned monologues. The story transforms the traditionally maligned witches, stepmothers, and spell-casting fairies of legend into living, breathing, 21st century women with a mission: to tell their side of the story for the first time. This will be the first-ever public performance of Grimm Women, the newest play by the director of Bay Path University’s MFA in Creative Nonfiction and the author of Curtain Call, The Wendy Chronicles, and New Soul. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Sunday, September 25. 4pm
FULL-LENGTH PLAY FESTIVAL/PLAY READINGS:
Play By Play 2016. The Northampton Playwrights Lab Presents their second annual festival of readings of new plays performed by local professional actors. HOTPOT and MY LIFE IN ROCK ‘N’ ROLL: Two pieces by Tanyss Rhea Martula.  HOTPOT is a short play about two mothers who meet to talk about their teenage children and find themselves in a melange of tight spaces, awkwardness, and confusion as things heat up. An earlier version of the play was staged at Chicago Dramatists. MY LIFE IN ROCK ‘N’ ROLL, a solo performance piece in progress takes audiences on a roller coaster ride through the highs of an unexpected late-in-life passion and the highs and lows of an unpredictable family. Performed by the playwright who will be showing the work she developed during the two-week Play By Play residency. A brief talk-back will be held following this performance. An early arrival is recommended. Seating is limited and there are no reservations. All performances will be held at the A.P.E. Gallery, 126 Main Street, Northampton, MA. ($10 SUGGESTED DONATION)

Find more theater productions across the region on our
Theater Bulletin Board
!


AUDITIONS

Thursday, September 15 through Sunday, September 18.
ACTORS WANTED/MUSICAL: Auditions will be held on the dates above by appointment only: Shrek the Musical. Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater is seeking local talent to help bring the magic of the Shrek film to life on stage! Many roles in ‘Shrek the Musical’ are non-specific in regard to age, gender, body type, race, etc. and may be cast non-traditionally. Auditions are by appointment only by calling Amherst Leisure Services at 413-259-3065. Click here for required forms and detailed audition information. Come be a part of this exciting musical while showcasing your talents to a community audience! Auditions will be held at the Bangs Community Center, 70 Boltwood Walk, Amherst, MA (FREE)

Sunday, September 11. 7-10pm; Monday, September 12. 7-10pm
ACTORS WANTED/AUDITIONS: Steel Magnolias. Based on the well-known movie of the same name, Steel Magnolias is a moving and heart wrenching drama. M’Lynn is the mother of bride-to-be Shelby Eatenton, and as friend Truvy fixes the women’s hair for the ceremony, with the helping hand of aspiring beautician Annelle, diabetic Shelby has a health scare that doesn’t bode well for her hopes of having children. As time passes, the women and their friends encounter both tragedy and good fortune, highlighting the importance of support during life’s most difficult challenges. The Smith College Department of Theatre is casting roles for 6 actors. Five college and community members are invited to audition, and diversity and color-inclusive casting is welcome. Perusal scripts are available in the Josten Library and those interested can click here for detailed audition information. Auditions will be held in Acting Studio 1 in the Mendenhall Center for the Performing Arts, 122 Green Street, Northampton, MA (FREE)

Find more theater productions across the region on our
Theater Bulletin Board
!

 

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