SPRING 2021 in the Valley of the Sun
italics=School of Music, Dance & Theatre (MDT) production
Events in all bold (not just the title) counts as credit for my students
MDT Musical Theatre events will be announced approx. 2 weeks prior to show, due to Covid restrictions. For updates: https://musicdancetheatre.asu.edu/music-theatre-and-opera/events
DUE TO ONGOING CORONA VIRUS PANDEMIC, THEATRES ARE POSTPONING/MOVING TO VIRTUAL. MAKE SURE TO CHECK BEFORE GOING!
Please let me know about online performances so I can list them!
A good source of virtual programming (always changing) is the TDF site, where you can sign up for a weekly newsletter letting you know about virtual programming of Broadway/Off-Broadway/Off-Off B shows and more.
8-16 PROTOTYPE FESTIVAL new opera/theatre works produced by HERE (NYC) and Beth Morrison's groundbreaking BMP (Beth is a graduate of ASU's School of Music, and has deeply changed the world of "opera"!). Most of these are streaming on-demand.
-17 UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL '21 The annual international festival of new work from Chile, Iran, USA, U.K. Curated by Mark Russell and produced by the Public Theatre in NY. Schedule
Some events free, others $. Co-sponsored by ASU Gammage!
-January 31. THREE DECEMBERS Arizona Opera presents stream of Opera San Jose's THREE DECEMBERS "Featuring world-renowned mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, Jake Heggie’s work features a brilliant, witty libretto by Gene Scheer and a rich, soaring score. Based on an original script by the legendary playwright, librettist, and screenwriter Terrence McNally, Three Decembers is a fullhearted American opera about family – the ones we are born into, and those that we create." $30
15-16 MANOPOLY MFA Dance candidate Nic Herring-Harman's virtual project. 5pm MST/7pmEST.
16-17 CELEBRATE LOCAL at Musical Instrument Museum/MIM Many events, including Native American Music and Dance performances by Yellow Bird Productions.
21-31 THE APPROACH written and directed by Mark O'Rowe. Performed live from Project Arts Center, Dublin and also on-demand. Presented in U.S. by St. Ann's Warehouse (NYC) "
Three conversations draw us into the inner lives of Anna, Cora, and Denise. What will they reveal to each other? And what does each of them have to hide? “It takes a crisis of some sort sometimes, or an upheaval, for people to really evaluate how they feel about one another, doesn’t it?” The Approach is an exploration of betrayal, and an appeal to listen before it’s too late." Irish playwright O'Rowe wrote Howie the Bookie and Terminus.
POSTPONED: RUNAWAYS Elizabeth Swados' musical originally developed in 1978 through workshops with young people living on the streets of NYC. Book, lyrics and music by Elizabeth Swados; direction by Toby Yatso; music direction by Mario Yniguez; choreography by Hannah Victoria Thomas. ASU School of Music streamed event. RESCHEDULED TBA
26-27 LA MAMA MOVES DANCE FESTIVAL. Broadcast from NYC's LaMaMa Theatre
25-Feb 7 REFLECTIONS OF NATIVE VOICES Curated by Safe Harbors NYC and hosted by New York Theatre Workshop. $10 " featuring theatre, music and native dance performances by visionary Indigenous artists from across the country."
28 OMAR OFFENDUM performs LOST IN TRANSLATION. Syrian/American rapper/spoken word artist. UCLA CAP virtual broadcast 7:30pm PST " a performance of Lost in Translation, followed by a discussion about unity and belonging in Los Angeles. Released in the midst of the 2020 pandemic, Lost in Translation is a musical/spoken word sonic saga, featuring Omar Offendum and Thanks Joey. Omar Offendum is a Syrian-American rapper/spoken word artist living in Los Angeles."
29 ALONZO KING LINES BALLET Scottsdale Center for Performing Arts 8pm
-ongoing UNTIL THE FLOOD (2018) Renowned playwright/performer Dael Orlandersmith's one-woman show "Based on extensive interviews following the 2014 shooting of black teenager Michael Brown by white police officer Darren Wilson, this tour-de-force one woman show gives voice to a community haunted by injustice and a country yearning for change" streamed by NYC's Rattlestick Theatre.
-all of January THE EXPONENTIAL FESTIVAL an NYC series of experimental performance. Never heard of it, but sound very promising. If you see something, say something!
Caden Manson and Big Art Group (NYC) are making their wildly inventive and multi-mediated pieces (documentation) available all month at
6-8 TRANSITIONS ASU Dance senior capstone concert. Will be adapted for small in-person audiences. I am told it will be broadcast to larger audience in March
9 THE JUST AND THE BLIND musician/composer Daniel Bernard Roumain/DBR and choreographer/spoken-word artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph work with street-dance pioneer Drew Dollaz. "a powerful multimedia experience that illuminates the unseen and under-heard experiences of incarcerated youth and their families..." Directed by Michael John Garces of Cornerstone Theatre (LA). This is a gathering of exemplary performers/thinkers. 6:30 MST/5:30 PST. Free but you must register!
THE JUST AND THE BLIND streaming until Feb 17!
The Just and the Blind on YouTube
12-14 YORICK, LA HISTORIA de HAMLET. Chilean actor/director Franscisco Reyes performs, in Spanish with English subtitles, his "adaptation of Shakespeare for the modern age, the production is structured according to Hamlet's main soliloquies and narrated by Yorick, who in the original is represented by the iconic skull of the late court jester." Streamed by Redcat in LA, the show was originally created in 2014 to be performed in outdoor theatres in Chile. The current video version features Reyes as both Yorick and puppeteer of the plasticine characters. It is an intimate spectacle, illuminated only by the light of a single candle.
13 PATHWAYS OF RECOVERY written and adapted by our recent graduate Molly Bishop, and directed for the School of Communications by Jennifer Linde. 5pm Zoom performance. A team of faculty and students from ASU's Hugh Downs School of Human Communication dedicated to destigmatizing alcohol addiction/alcoholism and recovery is launching The Recovery Communication Project (TRCP) with its first event, a virtual live performance of “Pathways of Recovery.” The performance is based on the writings of the executive director of TRCP, Linda Costigan Lederman, PhD, a professor in the ASU Hugh Downs School of Human Communication and the school’s director from 2014–2020. “Pathways” portrays the lived experiences of alcohol addiction and recovery. Free but you must register. The 35-minute performance will be followed by discussion and a breakout into facilitated story circles for those who wish to participate: https://storyscopeproject.com/
13 VIRTUAL HOOP DANCE CONTEST Sponsored by the Heard Museum. If you have never watched hoop dancing (shamefully, I hadn't until last year when our very own Nora Cherry lured me to a performance at ASU) you are in for something rather amazing. Showtime TBA
13. THE INFINITE ENERGY OF ADA LOVELACE by Kamala Sankaram and Rob Handel. ASU Opera. 2&7pm. tickets are free for HIDA students but you must reserve. "Torn between her love of mathematics and familial duty, pioneering mathematician Ada Lovelace must decide how she will shape her life despite public scrutiny and societal expectations. Kamala Sankaram’s pulsing score and Rob Handel’s poetic libretto explore the dilemmas of an ambitious woman in the early 19th century, reflected through modern day’s glass ceilings - cracked, but not yet broken." 30 minutes
14 SERVICE PROVIDER by Christopher Weiss and John de los Santos. ASU Opera 2&7pm tickets are free for HIDA students but you must reserve. "a “selfie” of a relationship on the rocks in the digital age. “Service Provider” joins a couple on their third wedding anniversary in a swanky restaurant, quickly revealing that not all is well, as smartphone-obsessed Autumn spends most of the date online and unplugged from her husband who desperately vies for her attention. Comedic antics, betrayal and drama unfurl as we follow the couple through an event that probably won’t make “the Gram.” This production contains material that may not be suitable for some viewers, including strong language and sexually suggestive situations. 40 minutes
19-28, March 5-6 NEW PLAY FESTIVAL new work by our MFA Dramatic Writers. Light Switch by Dave Osmundsen and directed by Kristina Friedgen;; en-DANGER!-ed by A.R. Corwin and directed by Jillian Johnson,;Alone by Jesse D. Saywell, directed by Jeff McMahon , designed by Andres Alcala with sound design by Kyra Weaver.
Feb. 20 at 7:30pm en-Danger-ed
Feb. 21 at 2:00pm en-Danger-ed
Feb 26-28 Light Switch
March 5 at 7:30 pm. Alone
March 6 at 2:00pm. Alone
25 COWBOY ASU Gammage presents free digital performance livestream "set in 1888, twenty-three years after the abolishment of slavery, U.S. Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves and his companion Grant Johnson find themselves stuck in a a saloon with two wanted criminals." Free 6pm tickets
17-28 MURDER FOR TWO Phoenix Theatre Outdoor Theatre. "The murder mystery gets a fresh new spin as two gifted performers take on all the parts from the detective to the killer. Expect witty banter, colorful characters, and delicious suspense. Mystery fans, prepare for a feast" Features our very own Toby Yatso, which is reason enough to make this a priority!
24-March 21 AS FAR AS ISOLATION GOES Presented by Fisher Center/Bard College. $20 "collaboration between live artist Tania El Khoury and musician and street artist Basel Zaraa. Reimagined for an online context during coronavirus lockdown, the piece is built from their original collaboration entitled As Far As My Fingertips Take Me in which El Khoury commissioned Zaraa to record a rap song inspired by the journey his sisters made from Damascus to Sweden. In As Far As Isolation Goes, Zaraa and El Khoury worked together to create another iteration of their previous piece focused on mental and physical health experiences of refugees in the United Kingdom. Zaraa created a song inspired by conversations with friends and colleagues who have recently claimed refuge in the UK. In this online, interactive, 1-on-1 performance As Far As Isolation Goes (Online) uses touch, sound, and interactivity to bring audience members in contact with those faced with inhumane detention centers and a mental health system that disregard their political and emotional contexts."
RIF a one-act by our very own MFA Dramatic Writing candidate Straton Rushing, will be at the Festival de la Bete Noire in Montreal Streaming dates TBA
REPRESENT a new movie presented by Phoenix Art Museum streaming. "follows a teenage boy through Phoenix Art Museum during a school field trip, an experience that yields an unexpected effect. The film explores the power and importance of representation in museum spaces and features actor Mykhal Polite in his first film. World premiere in 2020 at the Providence Children’s Film Festival in Rhode Island, where it received the 2020 Hasbro Children’s Hospital Audience Choice Award. The film was also selected for the 2020 New York International Children’s Film Festival,
MY ARTISTRY IS MORE THAN A GIG an ongoing series of interviews with artists in the Valley. Produced/presented by BlK Box Phx New videocasts every week! Hosted by Elaine "E.E." Moe
-ongoing through March 21 AS FAR AS ISOLATION GOES Presented by Fisher Center/Bard College. $20 "collaboration between live artist Tania El Khoury and musician and street artist Basel Zaraa. Reimagined for an online context during coronavirus lockdown, the piece is built from their original collaboration entitled As Far As My Fingertips Take Me in which El Khoury commissioned Zaraa to record a rap song inspired by the journey his sisters made from Damascus to Sweden. In As Far As Isolation Goes, Zaraa and El Khoury worked together to create another iteration of their previous piece focused on mental and physical health experiences of refugees in the United Kingdom. Zaraa created a song inspired by conversations with friends and colleagues who have recently claimed refuge in the UK. In this online, interactive, 1-on-1 performance As Far As Isolation Goes (Online) uses touch, sound, and interactivity to bring audience members in contact with those faced with inhumane detention centers and a mental health system that disregard their political and emotional contexts."
1- ongoing all month ROMEROFEST , presented by Arizona Theatre Company, a month-long celebration of the diverse, thoughtful and impactful works of ATC Playwright-in-Residence (and University of Arizona playwrighting professor) Elaine Romero, with digital performances by theatre companies across the U.S. and in Mexico all March. Check link for schedule
4-5 ASU/MDT DANCE UNDERGRADUATE PROJECT PRESENTATIONS. 7:30PM reserve
5-7 HEARD MUSEUM GUILD INDIAN FAIR & MARKET
5 & 6 ALONE: Edgar Allan Poe's Final Chapter. written by Jesse D. Saywell, directed by Jeff McMahon, designed by Andrés Alcalá. Sound design by Kyra Weaver. Presented as part of MDT NEW PLAY FESTIVAL new work by our MFA Dramatic Writers. 7:30 Friday and 2pm Saturday
5-7 & 11-13. HAPPY DAYS by Samuel Beckett. featuring Tessa Albertson and Jake Austin Robertson. NYC's Wild Project conceived of Beckett's classic monologue from a woman who cannot move but remains relentlessly optimistic as a kind of metaphor for Covid. Rare permission from Beckett estate allowed them to present it as a remote film, directed by Nico Krell. Free but reserve Good piece in American Theatre about this project
now-April 30 MODULATION "a creative investigation on the strands that weave together our lives over this past tumultuous and revelatory year. A digital, self-guided exploration of these distanced times created by thirteen of the most provocative and diverse voices in the contemporary music idiom; MODULATION leads you through the themes of ISOLATION, IDENTITY, and FEAR, with the connection of BREATH. An electrifying auditory and visual journey of new creations awaits" One of the collaborators is our very own DBR. Presented by Prototype Festival and Beth Morrison Productions.
10-April 4 RING OF FIRE Phoenix Theatre Outdoor Theatre "Johnny Cash captured the spirit of America like few other musicians. Now this spirited production presents 38 songs from The Man in Black’s catalogue to tell stories of change and growth, as we follow a winning cast through important moments in their lives"
-March 21. ASK YOUR MAMA a multimedia concert performance of Langston Hughes' jazz poem suite ASK YOUR MAMA. Presented by ASU Kerr. "The Langston Hughes Project is a multimedia concert performance of Langston Hughes' kaleidoscopic jazz poem suite “Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz.” This is Hughes' homage in verse and music to the struggle for artistic and social freedom at home and abroad at the beginning of the 1960s. It is a 12-part epic poem Hughes scored with musical cues drawn from blues and Dixieland, gospel songs, bebop, Latin cha cha, Afro-Cuban mambo music, German lieder, Jewish liturgy, West Indian calypso, African drumming and more – a creative masterwork left unperformed at his death." Live discussion with Dr. Neal Lester and Dr. Ronald C McCurdy. 7pm Thursday March 18. Free/click here password is LHP2021
12 MOUTHFUL OF MARBLES-ASU Dance Senior Capstones. Eleven graduating choreographers present their work 7:30pm
12-14 RUNAWAYS Elizabeth Swados' legendary work created in 1978 with young street people. in NYC. Book, lyrics and music by Elizabeth Swados; direction by Toby Yatso; music direction by Mario Yniguez; choreography by Hannah Victoria Thomas. Presented by ASU Music Theatre and Opera.
12-ongoing RE-FEST Culture Hub, a global art & technology community created by NYC's La MaMa and SeoulArts in South Korea, present an annual festival brining artists, activists, and technologists together to imagine the future.
16 THE JUST AND THE BLIND musician/composer Daniel Bernard Roumain/DBR and choreographer/spoken-word artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph work with street-dance pioneer Drew Dollaz. "a powerful multimedia experience that illuminates the unseen and under-heard experiences of incarcerated youth and their families..." Directed by Michael John Garcés of Cornerstone Theatre (LA). This is a gathering of exemplary performers/thinkers. 7pm EST. Presented as live streaming by Modlin Center for the Arts in Virginia. Free but you must register
19-21 HEDDATRON by Elizabeth Meriwether. Galvin Playhouse. Directed by Ron May. 3 performances only! 90 minutes!
20-21 & 26-28 Festival of New American Theatre at Phoenix Theatre Company. Featuring socially distanced seating AND two works by our MFA Dramatic Writing students Straton Rushing and A.R. Corwin!
MY ARTISTRY IS MORE THAN A GIG an ongoing series of interviews with artists in the Valley. Produced/presented by BlK Box Phx New videocasts every week! Hosted by Elaine "E.E." Moe
9-11 [title of show] ASU School of Music present socially distance performance with masked performers in "a musical about two guys writing a musical about two guys writing a musical." The plot follows Hunter, Jeff and their friends, Heidi and Susan, on their journey through the gauntlet of creative self-expression as they quickly create an entry for a new musical theater festival. During the 90 minute one-act musical, they write and perform their show at the festival and learn lessons about themselves as people, friends and artists. [title of show] is, above all, a love letter to the musical theater and to the joy of collaboration. This production contains explicit language, suitable for mature audiences only. Music and lyrics by Jeff Bowen; book by Hunter Bell; direction by Kate Leonard; music direction by Kaivan Mayelzadeh.
16-18 LUCHADORA! by Alvaro Saar Rios. Lyceum Theatre. Directed by Ricky Araiza
9-25 DESIGNSPACE: A NEW DRIVE-THRU SENSORY EXPERIENCE "The sensory-rich exhibit created by Lightswitch features design installations from industry professionals, renowned structural artists HYBYCOZO and ASU's own rising stars in the field – students enrolled in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. The mile-long drive-thru museum will take riders on a journey from our world to outer space." You will need one ticket per moving vehicle (approx $44) (students; maybe this would work and lower the costs if you car pool, mask and roll down the windows?)
through April 30 MODULATION "a creative investigation on the strands that weave together our lives over this past tumultuous and revelatory year. A digital, self-guided exploration of these distanced times created by thirteen of the most provocative and diverse voices in the contemporary music idiom; MODULATION leads you through the themes of ISOLATION, IDENTITY, and FEAR, with the connection of BREATH. An electrifying auditory and visual journey of new creations awaits" One of the collaborators is our very own DBR. Presented by Prototype Festival and Beth Morrison Productions.
16-18 SPRING DANCE FESTIVAL ASU Dance
17 MOSAIC: Highlighting Diversity in the Arts. Student centered performances focusing on BIPOC and GLBTQIA creation. 7pm. Sponsored by Inclusion Diversity Equity & Accountability Student Committee (IDEA)
18 TheatreLAB. DIGNITY a new play by MFA Dramatic Writing candidate Jesse D. Saywell. 7:30 "Suffering from a debilitating disease, Helen Moore was ready to die. When her son, Jayden, honors his mother's wishes, he finds himself on trial for murder. But when an upstart ACLU attorney joins the defense team, it becomes clear that this trial will have implications that go far beyond the rural Louisiana courthouse. Dignity poses the question: If we can choose how we live, can we also choose how we die?" link to webcast
21 WHAT IS LIVENESS? A virtual event presented by Phoenix Art Museum and featuring students from Prof. Robert Farid Karimi and Prof Max Bernstein. Featuring work by: Michelangelo Cozzo, Olivia Hernandez, Anji Inukai, Ivie Keene, Garrett Keeto, Ri Lindegren, Collin Mcshane, Karrah Monce, Abrielle Myers, Crystal Nguyễn, Dejuan Porter, Lucy Primiano, Patrick Rivers, Adrian Sanchez, Bradley Smith, Matthew Soson, Grant St. Clair, Georgia Stanley, Ziqian Zhou "Using emerging performance techniques and technologies, these artists will imagine, construct, collage, and create unique worlds through mediation, gamification, and interdisciplinary collaboration. The showcase will include a variety of media performance hybrids, site-specific works, and a reclamation of broadcast practices and aesthetics as a surrogate for togetherness" 6-8pm Free.
21 SHFT: CONDER/dance TEN TINY DANCES "ten Arizona choreographers in this special SHFT presentation of Ten Tiny Dances. Performed in carefully selected spaces throughout the TCA property, local dance artists have designed inspired intersections between dance and the architecture of Tempe Center of the Arts. Presented on a 4 foot by 4 foot tiny stage, Ten Tiny Dances at TCA challenges conventional ideas of where dance occurs and how it ignites connections with viewers." featuring our very own Carley Conder and Keith A. Thompson Tempe Center for the Arts free but RSVP 6-7pm AZ time
22 PLASTIC BAG STORE presented by CAP/UCLA 7pm PDT. "Created by award-winning Brooklyn-based artist, puppet designer and director Robin Frohardt, The Plastic Bag Store was conceived as an immersive installation and puppet-theater piece designed to take place in a storefront retail space. For L.A. audiences, Frohardt and her team will reimagine a visit to The Plastic Bag Store through a new film commissioned by CAP UCLA"
22 BLACKFACE (Object Lessons) ASU Prof. Ayanna Thompson in a conversation with ASU's Steven Beschloss about Ayanna's new book about the practice of "blacking up." virtual ticks. 6pm Changing Hands Bookstore
23-25. BALDWIN AND BUCKLEY AT CAMBRIDGE (work-in-progress by NY's Elevator Repair Service). Virtual presentation by RedCat in LA. "In 1965, James Baldwin and William F. Buckley, Jr. were invited to The Cambridge University Union to debate the resolution “The American Dream is at the Expense of The American Negro.” New York’s provocative and award-winning theater ensemble Elevator Repair Service (ERS) returns to REDCAT to re-create their profoundly relevant confrontation in this work-in-progress showing of Baldwin and Buckley at Cambridge. As a more intimate and personal counterpoint to the debate, the final scene features a brief, imagined reunion between Baldwin and his close friend and confidante Lorraine Hansberry, who died only weeks before the debate. The piece was conceived in late 2019 by long-time ERS company member Greig Sargeant. In the many months since those early conversations, the subject of the debate has only become more urgent. With both 1965 and 2021 in mind, Baldwin and Buckley at Cambridge – through a starkly simple design and an acting style that favors intimacy over impersonation – presents the debate as real, immediate, and of this moment. " btw, if you've never seen the original debate, you can find it on YouTube. Baldwin is masterful and leaves Buckley looking ridiculous.
23-25 IT'S ONLY LIFE music and words by John Bucchino, Directed by Robert Kolby Harper, Choreography by Nicholas Flores. Presented outside on Nelson Fine Arts plaza by ASU School of Music
26 ASU School of Music, Music Theatre Showcase
26-May 9 FOUR AMERICAN WOMEN by David Mamet. World premiere of 4 new monologues by Pulitzer Prize winner Mamet. Great Barrington Public Theater featuring leading American actors Rebecca Pidgeon, Heidi Sulzman and Yolonda Ross. Presented by Broadway on Demand
28-? MEN ON THE VERGE OF A HIS-PANIC BREAKDOWN our very own Guillermo Reyes' timeless monologue (a major actor workout). Teatro Audaz in San Antonio, TX will be livestreaming
through May 9 ENCORE-favorites from the vault of the famed Goodman Theatre in Chicago. Including SMOKEFALL (through April 26) and MEASURE FOR MEASURE (April 26-May 9) on which our very own William Kirkham assisted!
-through June 21 THE LINE "First performed live on Zoom on July 8, 2020, the world premiere play was viewed more than 55,000 times in 18 countries during its limited streaming run last summer. Crafted from firsthand interviews with New York City medical first responders during the COVID-19 pandemic, THE LINE cuts through the media and political noise to reveal the lived experiences of frontline medical workers in New York and their battle to save lives in a system built to serve the bottom line." Presented by The Public Theatre (NYC)
30-May 1 ASU New American Film School Capstone showing. 6:30pm via Twitch and YouTube
3 WHEN POLITICAL PROTESTS BECOME THEATER a conversation at 7pm ET/4MDT with one of the Chicago 7, Lee Weiner, and renowned Manhattan District Attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr. Sponsored by NYC Forum on Life, Culture & Society of Touro College. RSVP
4. DBR LAB II FINAL PRESENTATIONS 7pm AZ time. Presentations from grad and undergrad contributors in Dance, Theatre/AME, Music and Art. Facilitated by Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), Jeff McMahon, and Malena Grosz. Featuring Avery Polster, Florencia Durón, Lawson Malnory, Anton Lapov, and ONOH YouTube link
21-31 HIT MUSIC by Guillermo Reyes. Directed by Jesse D. Saywell and featuring performance (and media design) by Andrés Alcalá. Streaming