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Eastern announces 2022-23 theatre season ‘The Awakening’

Published on September 13, 2022

Eastern announces 2022-23 theatre season ‘The Awakening’

Awakenings Flyer Eastern Connecticut State University has announced its fall 2022–spring 2023 theatre season with a series titled “The Awakening.” Reflecting changes in the entertainment industry brought on by the pandemic, the series of four productions and one special, one-night performance focuses on various awakenings or discoveries.

“If you are a regular attendee at live performances, a film or television buff, or even a gamer, you have observed firsthand how the pandemic has challenged artists in the entertainment industry to radically reimagine the way we create performances and engage with audiences,” said Kristen Morgan, theatre professor and co-chair of the Theatre + Performance Media Program. “Theatre at Eastern has always been on the forefront of cutting-edge technology. (This series) reflects our practice of using the latest digital tools to tell stories that matter on stage and on screen.”

The first show, “Oedipus the King,” will be performed Oct. 11–16 in the Fine Arts Instructional Center’s (FAIC) Proscenium Theater. This is a classic tale of accountability in leadership and the challenges faced by the public and elected officials during outbreaks.  Directed by Bob McGrath, written by Sophocles and translated by Brian Doerries, “Oedipus” tells of an overconfident king during a plague who ignores advisors and prophecies, only to be exiled after finding out a dark secret about himself.

Next is an original Eastern production titled “Acting is Believing”, running from Dec. 1–4. Conceived and directed by professors Brian Day and David Pellegrini, the production is based on Lope de Vega’s “Lo fingido verdadero”. This intermedial, bilingual performance will start in front of two separate audiences: one at the Proscenium Theater with a theatrical performance and one at the Del Monte Studio with a filmed version. After each display, the audiences swap places, turning them into participants in interpreting what’s real and what’s imagined.

“The Nether”, directed by Professor Kristen Morgan and written by Jennifer Haley, will be performed Feb. 28–Mar. 5, 2023, in the FAIC Studio Theater. This performance depicts a virtual wonderland in which one can log in, pick an identity, and live out their desires. This becomes a crime drama when a young detective discovers a disturbing entertainment brand and triggers an investigation into dark corners of the mind. This production won the 2012 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize.

The fourth show, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” will be held Apr. 20–23 and 27-30, 2023, in the FAIC Studio Theater. The production is a comedic musical in which six mismatched students vying to win a spelling championship face challenges with pressure, puberty, and interactions with adults. Winner of the Tony and the Drama Desk Award for Best Book of a Musical, this Broadway show was originally directed by James Lapine. “The Awakening” adaptation is directed by Tim Golebiewski, conceived by Rebecca Feldman, and features music and lyrics by William Finn, a book by Rachel Sheinkin, and additional material by Jay Reiss.

In addition to the four Main Stage productions, a one-night guest performance titled “Fantini Futuro with Ben Neill” will take place in the FAIC Concert Hall on Nov. 3. This audiovisual performance features the Mutantrumpet, an electro-acoustic instrument designed by Neill, as well as countertenor, Baroque keyboards and interactive video material. The narrative of this performance depicts Baroque composer Girolamo Fantini traveling through time and space, reflecting on modern technology’s transformative power.

For more information and to buy tickets, visit the ticketing website.

Written by Noel Teter