UMass Amherst Theater

UMass Amherst Theater What students learn in the classroom comes to life in our theaters, and we want the greater community to be part of our artistic community.

Theater is not a one-man show. We believe in collaboration, in pairing the freshest minds and newest ideas with wisdom and experience. Our productions work, because we work together. Come see for yourself!

Alumna Lisa Channer and her friends founded the late, great Northampton-based political theater company Sleeveless Theat...
06/24/2019

Alumna Lisa Channer and her friends founded the late, great Northampton-based political theater company Sleeveless Theater in 1989, shortly after graduating from UMass. On its 30th anniversary, the company donated its archives to the @umassamherstlibraries . Lisa stopped by to see us, so we got this photo of her with a poster from one of their shows, Womb for Rent, which predicted the rise of Donald Trump.

Thanks for letting us crash your Mary Poppins rehearsal, @paintboxtheatre ! Get your tickets now for next week’s run o...
06/22/2019

Thanks for letting us crash your Mary Poppins rehearsal, @paintboxtheatre ! Get your tickets now for next week’s run of funny, kid-friendly performances featuring UMass Theater alumna Linda Tardif ‘11 and current student @gabrielcifuentes #umasstheateriseverywhere #weareveryproudofthat #umass #umassamherst #umasstheater #paintboxtheatre #livetheater #childrenstheater

While we await the glorious images our new season will produce, we’ll take a look back at some great moments from our ...
06/17/2019

While we await the glorious images our new season will produce, we’ll take a look back at some great moments from our past. This photo is from the late Julian Olf’s amazing production of The Chairs, his last production with us. (Photo by Jon Crispin) #umass #umassamherst #umasstheater #theater #theatre #costumedesign #productiondesign

Memorial for Professor of Theater Julian Olf Everyone is welcome to a memorial service celebrating the life of Julian Ol...
06/13/2019

Memorial for Professor of Theater Julian Olf

Everyone is welcome to a memorial service celebrating the life of Julian Olf, who passed way this past winter. The memorial service will take place on Saturday, July 27 at 10:00 a.m. in Bezanson Recital Hall in the Fine Arts Center, with a reception immediately following in the FAC Atrium.

Posted on behalf of Julian Olf's family.

Tributes to Professor Olf from former students and colleagues during his time with UMass Theater: https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/remembering-julian-olf

Ko Festival, which has alumna Sabrina Hamilton at the helm, has been presenting thought provoking theater and other perf...
06/12/2019
vr2.verticalresponse.com

Ko Festival, which has alumna Sabrina Hamilton at the helm, has been presenting thought provoking theater and other performances for many years. This year's season starts July 5; check it out.

Dan was a long-time Ko Board Member, Treasurer, Webmaster and spouse of Ko's Artistic Director, Sabrina Hamilton. If you've been to Ko performances, you may remember him outside near the coffee, or in his favorite seat in the back row. Right before he died, Dan was set to head up a fundraising campa...

Rand stage progress update! 📸 Willow Cohen
06/11/2019

Rand stage progress update! 📸 Willow Cohen

With the Tonys behind us, it's time to look ahead to what new work is worth watching, and you can do that this coming Fr...
06/10/2019
Jamie Maletz ’11 writes musicals — and her destiny | Theater | UMass Amherst

With the Tonys behind us, it's time to look ahead to what new work is worth watching, and you can do that this coming Friday at 54 Below in New York. Jamie Maletz '11, a BDIC grad who created a musical theater major for herself and who has spent the years since graduation creating her own works, has produced a showcase of works by herself and others in the grad program she just completed. Read more about the event and Jamie's path since leaving UMass: https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/jamie-maletz-%E2%80%9911-writes-musicals-%E2%80%94-and-her-destiny

Jamie Maletz ’11 has been writing musicals since she was 17, but it took her a while to work up the nerve to pursue it as a career. Nevertheless, several years after leaving UMass, Maletz decided it was now or never. Now, she has a master’s in musical theater, a brand-new musical, and an upcomin...

Another day, another honor for a theater alum! Lighting designer and UMass Theater alum Matthew Richards was one of a qu...
06/05/2019
'Engagement Party,’ ‘Music Man,’ ‘Flea in Her Ear’ win top Connecticut Critics Circle awards

Another day, another honor for a theater alum! Lighting designer and UMass Theater alum Matthew Richards was one of a quarter who received awards for Hartford Stage's premiere of The Engagement Party. Go, Matt!

https://www.courant.com/ctnow/arts-theater/hc-ctnow-connecticut-critics-circle-awards-20190604-fozwozawf5av3o7xkjd3jfnnai-story.html

"The Music Man" at the Goodspeed, "A Flea in Her Ear" at Westport Playhouse and "The Engagement Party" at Hartford Stage were among the big winners at the Connecticut Critics Circle 2019 awards ceremony, held June 3 at the Goodspeed.

Guess who won Outstanding Set Design for a Musical at last Night's Drama Desk Awards?Congratulations to David Korins '99...
06/04/2019
Drama Desk Awards Winners List: ‘The Ferryman’, ‘The Prom’ Among Top Honorees

Guess who won Outstanding Set Design for a Musical at last Night's Drama Desk Awards?
Congratulations to David Korins '99, designer of Beetlejuice!

https://deadline.com/2019/06/drama-desk-awards-winners-the-ferryman-the-prom-broadway-theater-1202625710/

The winners for the 64th Annual Drama Desk Awards were announced Sunday night with Jez Butterworth’s The Ferryman winning for Outstanding Play and The Prom taking home the trophy for Outstand…

The politics of casting are changing, and theater thought-leaders are having important conversations about where to go n...
05/29/2019
Casting a Movement: The Welcome Table Initiative, 1st Edition (Paperback) - Routledge

The politics of casting are changing, and theater thought-leaders are having important conversations about where to go next in a creating a casting culture that recognizes various communities' priorities.

Check out "Casting a Movement" which includes an essay from our very own Dr. Priscilla Page about casting across identities, using one of our productions as an example: "Collidescope 2.0: Performing the 'Alien Gaze'"

Casting a Movement brings together US-based actors, directors, educators, playwrights, and scholars to explorethe cultural politics of casting. Drawing on the notion of a

Have you got a kid, or are you young at heart yourself? PaintBox Theatre is looking for art to enhance its upcoming show...
05/24/2019

Have you got a kid, or are you young at heart yourself? PaintBox Theatre is looking for art to enhance its upcoming shows — the work is then incorporated into the productions the company puts on, which are always fresh takes on childrens' favorites. And in case you're wondering, why yes, we ARE proud to claim alumni among the cast and creative team of this company too! (Hi Troy David Mercier, Linda Tardif and Callum LaFrance!)

Calling all artists! We need your supercalifragilisticexpialidocious drawings and paintings!

No floor! Thanks to @morin_matt595 for capturing this great image of the Rand Theater stage floor renovation.
05/23/2019

No floor! Thanks to @morin_matt595 for capturing this great image of the Rand Theater stage floor renovation.

UMass Theater training comes in handy in many fields. Nick Ortolani '10 uses his to make people laugh as a standup comed...
05/22/2019
Nick Ortolani '10 uses theater to get laughs | Theater | UMass Amherst

UMass Theater training comes in handy in many fields. Nick Ortolani '10 uses his to make people laugh as a standup comedian.
https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/nick-ortolani-10-uses-theater-get-laughs

Theater training translates to other fields. We asked one theater alum, Nick Ortolani, a 2010 graduate who has taken in theater training to a related field, a few questions about his time here at UMass Amherst and the Department of Theater, because we wanted to know how theater has impacted him and....

Need a laugh? Check out this short posted on Funny or Die, co-starring UMass Theater alumna Julia Lisa as the put-upon l...
05/20/2019
This Children’s Theater Company Is A Hot Dramatic Mess

Need a laugh? Check out this short posted on Funny or Die, co-starring UMass Theater alumna Julia Lisa as the put-upon leader of a children theater company.

https://www.funnyordie.com/2019/5/15/18242122/childrens-playhouse-theater-company-hot-dramatic-mess?fbclid=IwAR0kUOluYoslNMSTqfVuvDUBVh8qp8Tj2lhOexawf5eyH5LbPZhS8p_CY2g

Sunnyside Children’s Playhouse could use a few more adults supervising the adults who are supposed to be putting on the show.

05/17/2019
UMass Amherst Theater Lighting Dept.

Our lighting department folks make beautiful things happen on our stages but don't always get the recognition they deserve. Mia Darroch, a Communications and Film Studies major at UMass, sets things right with a lovely documentary! Thanks, Mia, we LOVE it!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BxC6bnNbdgU&t=57s

Special thanks to the UMass Theater Department! __________________________ Featuring: Erin MacDevitt Tom Kellher Melissa Smith __________________________ Mus...

We're on the UMass home page with a story about our Wild Thing production's amazing trip to the Texas-Mexico border to p...
05/16/2019
Road Trip to the Borderlands

We're on the UMass home page with a story about our Wild Thing production's amazing trip to the Texas-Mexico border to perform at the Siglo de Oro festival!

https://www.umass.edu/gateway/feature/road-trip-borderlands

Wild Thing is the title of the English translation by Professor of Theater Harley Erdman of Luis Vélez de Guevara’s original 17th-century play La Serrana de la Vera. The production was selected for the renowned Siglo de Oro Drama Festival of Spanish Classical Theatre, performed annually at the Ch...

Not all of our alumni go into theater — Alissa Mesibov '13 has found satisfaction and success with the ACLU as a fundr...
05/14/2019
Plot twist: Alissa Mesibov ‘13 finds her way from theater to fundraising | Theater | UMass Amherst

Not all of our alumni go into theater — Alissa Mesibov '13 has found satisfaction and success with the ACLU as a fundraiser to defend people's civil rights!

https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/plot-twist-alissa-mesibov-%E2%80%9813-finds-her-way-theater-fundraising

Sometimes UMass Theater students drift away from their roots once they’ve graduated. Take Alissa Mesibov, for example: “You look at where I started, studying dramaturgy, being a Shakespeare nerd, and here I am now fundraising for civil rights. It’s a bit of a left turn.” But the transition f...

So proud to have two of our students showcased in this wonderful series of interviews with graduating seniors: Garrett S...
05/07/2019

So proud to have two of our students showcased in this wonderful series of interviews with graduating seniors: Garrett Sager, the creator of Queer and Now, and Theater minor Terrance Joseph Peters, who tells a great story about how theater helped him get a job in computer science!

We're so proud of our graduating seniors and we thought there was no better way to pay tribute than to share some of their stories. Meet some of the graduating students of the Class of 2019! See someone you know? Tag them! #UMass2019🎓

Compiled, photographed, and conceptualized by Jen Gately '20

05/07/2019

Check out this great video about @gwsager and his work on @queerandnow_ which rarned him recognition as one of UMass’s Rising Researchers! Posted @withrepost • @researchnext @UMass theater major Garrett Sager '19 is one of the recipients of the Spring 2019 #RisingResearcher award thanks to his #research exploring ways to make radically-inclusive #queer theater with impact. @umassamhersttheater @umasshfa

And we are also super duper proud of this year’s Multicultural Theater Certificate awardees (with certificate director...
05/02/2019

And we are also super duper proud of this year’s Multicultural Theater Certificate awardees (with certificate director, the fabulous @profpris71 )

Here they are, friends: the class of 2019!
05/02/2019

Here they are, friends: the class of 2019!

Something that will never stop being exciting: UMass Theater alumni getting nominated for Tony Awards! Congratulations t...
04/30/2019
2019 Tony Award Nominees | Broadway Direct

Something that will never stop being exciting: UMass Theater alumni getting nominated for Tony Awards! Congratulations to David Korins, whose gorgeous designs for Beetlejuice have gotten him a nod for Best Scenic Design of a Musical!

https://broadwaydirect.com/2019-tony-award-nominees/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=marketingcloud&utm_campaign=TONY_NOMS_&mcid=dk1aOFpyaVFZUUliTE84L0ZlMm05OFpxRUx5b3Z5MGo=

Check out the complete list of the 2019 Tony Award nominees. The 73rd Annual Tony Awards will be broadcast live on June 9th at 8/7c on CBS.

It’s back! Come find us at Founder’s Day outside right now!
04/29/2019

It’s back! Come find us at Founder’s Day outside right now!

One of the most striking things about the independent work our students produce is its impressive scope. The next two we...
04/26/2019
Alexander Blaustein uses sound design to illustrate what it's like to live with anxiety | Theater | UMass Amherst

One of the most striking things about the independent work our students produce is its impressive scope. The next two weeks bring musicals, protest art, staged readings, and even a sound installation.

Read about Alexander Blaustein's unique use of sound to illustrate living with anxiety and panic here:
https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/alexander-blaustein-uses-sound-design-illustrate-what-its-live-anxiety
and check out all the works listed on our student works page here:
https://www.umass.edu/theater/student-work-series

All of these events are free and open to the public, so come join us in the Department of Theater!

UMass Theater senior Alexander Blaustein has long been involved with theater and has a long-standing interest in technology, but it wasn’t until he discovered sound design in his second semester at UMass that he found the right medium to combine his interests.

Found some Rand Shed the Shag stuff in the costume shop the other day!
04/26/2019

Found some Rand Shed the Shag stuff in the costume shop the other day!

We were already convinced that theater undergrads are amazing, but consider this: UMass has recognized theater majors as...
04/25/2019
Rising Researcher | Research Next | UMass Amherst

We were already convinced that theater undergrads are amazing, but consider this: UMass has recognized theater majors as Rising Researchers in each of the last three cycles of this prestigious honor! The latest student to join the august company of honorees is Garrett Sager, whose Queer and Now series has moved audiences on campus and in New York over the course of his time here. Go, Garrett!
Read more about his work here:
https://www.umass.edu/researchnext/researcher/breaking-boundaries

As part of her summer research, and now her honors thesis, Castonguay developed new models to understand the mathematical structures of networks of contacts between people during infectious disease epidemics. “Rebecca developed a new neural network model for estimating degree correlations and is i...

04/24/2019
the rig

Alumna Tanya Avendaño Stockler '18 is part of a new theater company, the rig.

the rig is a brand new performance project focused on bringing high quality works to communities and spaces that may have limited access to professional theater.

On April 26th at 7pm, the rig theater will be bringing its production of Pericles to Eastworks in Easthampton for a FREE/pay what you can performance.

Reserve tickets or learn more about the rig here: https://www.theaterrig.com/

the rig is a performance project that brings dynamic, professional theater to audiences that may have limited access to the arts

Got dressed up fancy for the Bard’s Birthday Bash! Always great to celebrate the arts with @umassfac and @umassmusicda...
04/24/2019

Got dressed up fancy for the Bard’s Birthday Bash! Always great to celebrate the arts with @umassfac and @umassmusicdance

The Radical Interconnectedness Festival presents art from marginalized populations this coming weekend. We're proud that...
04/22/2019
Marginalized groups to share stories through upcoming festival

The Radical Interconnectedness Festival presents art from marginalized populations this coming weekend. We're proud that one of our alumnae, Linda McInerney '98G, is the organizer of this important festival, which will present "12 art offerings that engage issues of race, age, gender, religion, class and suppressed aspects of cultural identity."
Read more in the Greenfield Recorder: https://www.recorder.com/Radical-Interconnectedness-24983664?fbclid=IwAR3ILpTu1eCjvcWQ_NKhGrp12dMZaBar1OF6rh0Xc52uL_wRb1arM5cS_E4

Suppressed stories from marginalized populations are on the verge of being shared with the community.That’s the goal behind the annual Radical Interconnectedness Festival, organized by Linda McInerney of Eggtooth Productions. “As the artistic director...

What is intimacy directing, and why is it important? We talked with Toby Vera Bercovici '11G, an alumna who's involved i...
04/12/2019
Toby Vera Bercovici '11G finds a better way to bring intimacy to the stage | Theater | UMass Amherst

What is intimacy directing, and why is it important? We talked with Toby Vera Bercovici '11G, an alumna who's involved in this new area of theater.

https://www.umass.edu/theater/news/toby-vera-bercovici-11g-finds-better-way-bring-intimacy-stage-2

Toby Vera BercoviciMost directors nowadays wouldn’t stage a fight without checking in with a fight choreographer, a professional charged with making conflict look exciting while keeping actors safe. So why would a director stage a sex scene — another fraught interaction — without making sure s...

We're taking a quick break from noting the achievements of our current department members to point out TWO of our alumni...
04/11/2019
Glenda Jackson: A Reimagined ‘King Lear’ Arrives on Broadway

We're taking a quick break from noting the achievements of our current department members to point out TWO of our alumni killing it on Broadway!

First, there's lighting designer Jane Cox, who's design for the new King Lear was noted in The Broadway Blog thusly: "Miriam Buether’s gorgeously textured singular set, shimmering in gold and reflecting Jane Cox’s lush lighting design, exudes an air of ostentatious prosperity — like a midcentury modern version of Mar-a-Lago.
https://thebroadwayblog.com/glenda-jackson-king-lear/

And David Korins, set designer of the new Beetlejuice, is featured talking about his work in the New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/11/theater/beetlejuice-broadway-set-design.html

Glenda Jackson stars in an over-polished 'King Lear' but still manages to reign supreme.

When the actors have to sneak in and out of the theater and you don’t want the sound of a crashing door, you have to g...
04/10/2019

When the actors have to sneak in and out of the theater and you don’t want the sound of a crashing door, you have to get creative with pool noodles. #umass #umassamherst #lynnnottage #studentmatinee #theaterlife #creativesolutions #necessityisthemotherofinvention

We'll just leave this amazing shot from Sweat's final dress rehearsal right here... (Thanks, Derek Fowles Photography)
04/05/2019

We'll just leave this amazing shot from Sweat's final dress rehearsal right here...
(Thanks, Derek Fowles Photography)

New York: come see @queerandnow_  perform at @nypop_umass
04/05/2019

New York: come see @queerandnow_ perform at @nypop_umass

04/04/2019

Two choices for theater tonight on our lovely campus: WORD Festival performs in the New Africa House Theater at 7 (it's free, seating first-come, first-serve), and Sweat previews in the Curtain at 7:30! (And yes, Sweat is sold out, but you can always try your luck on our waitlist; be there an hour before showtime to get on the list.)

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Fine Arts Center 151 Presidents Dr
Amherst, MA
01003

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