UGA’s department of theatre and film studies has announced the 2010-2011 University Theatre season. This season marks the reopening of the Fine Arts Theatre following an extensive, two-year renovation that received the Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation Award for outstanding restoration.
The Fine Arts Theatre will be the venue for Hamlet; The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee; and Die Fledermaus, an opera produced in collaboration with the Hugh Hodgson School of Music.
The more intimate Cellar Theatre will host The Life and Times of Tulsa Lovechild and Fuddy Meers as part of the mainstage season, and The Arabian Nights, Ruined and Aunt Dan and Lemon as Studio Series offerings. The Studio Series provides live theater in a stripped-down format that focuses on vibrant performances, illumination of playscript and inventive staging.
“The breadth and variety of the production calendar creates a great opportunity to showcase the talents of our students and faculty,” said David Zucker Saltz, head of the department of theatre and film studies, who will also serve as director for The Arabian Nights. “The re-opening of the Fine Arts Theatre makes this one of the most anticipated seasons in quite some time.”
The season begins in the Cellar Theatre with The Life and Times of Tulsa Lovechild: A Road Trip by Greg Owens. This bittersweet, comic road story runs Sept. 23-Oct. 3.
The Studio Series production of The Arabian Nights by Mary Zimmerman runs Oct. 12-17. In this lively and often racy adaptation of The Arabian Nights, a bride tries to save her life by spinning hypnotic tales of jesters, thieves and kings.
The first University Theatre show in the Fine Arts Theatre is The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by Rachel Sheinkin (book) and William Finn (music and lyrics) Nov. 4-14. In this musical comedy, nine wacky characters-six adolescents and three off-kilter school administrators-gather for the annual county spelling bee. Each night, a few members of the audience and an Athens-area celebrity will be invited to compete.
“So I have amnesia-that’s very inconvenient,” says Claire, the protagonist of Fuddy Meers, David Lindsey-Abaire’s quirky comedy/mystery about a woman with a rare condition that erases her memory whenever she goes to sleep. This mainstage production runs from Jan. 27-Feb. 6 in the Cellar Theatre.
Next in the Studio Series is Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Ruined from Feb. 15-20. This drama uses humor and song to address the raw and brutal realities of war in the Congo.
The final Studio Series production of the season is Aunt Dan and Lemon by Wallace Shawn, which runs from March 29-April 3. Critics celebrated it as provocative, philosophical, odd, eloquent and gripping: “a brilliant if improbable assault on the liberal conscience” (The London Guardian).
Closing out the season in the Fine Arts Theatre is William Shakespeare’s Hamlet April 14-23 in a stark, pared-down production.
Tickets for mainstage productions are $15, and
$12 for UGA students. Studio Series tickets are $10, and $7 for UGA students. For tickets and subscriptions, call (706) 542-4400 or order online at www.uga.edu/pac.