Gainesville, Fla., June 26, 2017 - The University of Florida (UF) School of Theatre + Dance will once again present a diverse season of productions showcasing the extraordinary talents of its faculty, students and guest artists. The season includes a series of events celebrating the 50th anniversary of the H. P. Constans Theatre, which opened in the fall of 1967 as part of the newly constructed J. Wayne Reitz Student Union. The School of Theatre + Dance’s 2017-208 season, which will begin Aug. 30, 2017 and run until April 22, 2018, will feature new and excitingly relevant plays, original and bold choreography, and fresh looks at favorite musicals and comedies.
“We’re especially excited about this coming season,” said School of Theatre + Dance Director Jerry Dickey. “Our work will be framed by the golden anniversary of the Constans Theatre. Since its opening fifty years ago, the Constans has been home to hundreds of theatre and dance productions, and literally thousands of young artists have performed, designed, or provided technical support for its performances. We will be announcing a series of events soon that will pay homage to the theatre and dance artists who have entertained the university and Gainesville communities in the Constans for the past five decades. The season starts with our annual co-production with the Hippodrome, an exciting adaptation of the prophetic novel 1984.”
What if one thought cost you everything? This September, the Hippodrome Theatre and the UF School of Theatre + Dance collaborate to bring George Orwell’s best-selling literary masterpiece, 1984, to the stage. This radical, award-winning adaptation by Andrew White dramatizes the erosion of privacy, destruction of identity, and an Orwellian vision of the future that is as relevant now as ever. The Chicago Sun-Times calls 1984, “A chilling, hard-hitting stage adaptation.” “Skillful blend of grimy proletariat despair and slick multimedia collage.”– Chicago Tribune. A Southeast regional premiere! Sept. 1-24, 2017 at the Hippodrome Theatre.
“We should show life neither as it is, nor as it should be, but as we see it in our dreams.” So says the would-be writer in Anton Chekhov’s modern masterpiece, The Seagull, performed Sept. 22-Oct. 1, 2017 in the Black Box Theatre under the direction of Tim Altmeyer. The story is set on a Russian country estate located some distance from Moscow. It is in this isolated and beautiful place where a passion for art, unrequited love and the search for one’s self unfolds.
Kiss Me Kate blends the book writing of Samuel and Bella Spewack with the incomparable music and lyrics of Cole Porter to bring about a theatrical play-within-a-play scenario based on William Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. In this celebration of the 1940’s American musical, a company of travelling actors’ off-stage antics begin to creep into their on-stage performances. Directed by Tony Mata with musical direction by Tony Offerle, this classic musical will take place Oct. 27-Nov. 5, 2017 in Constans Theatre. A special pre-show reception commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Constans Theatre is planned for Nov. 4, 2017.
The BFA Fall Dance Showcase, an annual concert coordinated by Ric Rose, performs Nov. 1-5, 2017 in the G-6 Studio of the Nadine McGuire Theatre and Dance Pavilion. The concert will display works by BFA dance students, UF School of Theatre + Dance faculty and guest choreographers.
Agbedidi: A Fusion of Traditional African and Contemporary Dance will once again grace the Constans Theatre with performances Dec. 1-3, 2017. The concert, under the direction of Mohamed DaCosta and Trent D. Williams, Jr., presents both traditional West African dance and contemporary dance by African-American choreographers. The show celebrates diversity of cultures and dance forms by bringing together UF faculty and world-renowned guest artists and musicians that never fails to get audiences out of their seats and dancing.
Described by director Mikell Pinkney as a “classic of Black/African-American dramatic literature and recognized nationally and internationally,” The Colored Museum will be performed in the Constans Theatre Jan. 26-28 and Feb. 2-4, 2018. Written by George C. Wolfe, this satiric parody employs a series of 11 vignettes of black history and the impact of African culture within America. “A sophisticated, satirical, seriously funny show that spoofs white and black America alike,” New York.
Assistant Professors Trent D. Williams, Jr. and Elizabeth Johnson will present original dance compositions exploring the concepts closeness and intrusion in Dance 2018. The production will take place Feb. 9-18, 2018 in the Black Box Theatre. Drawing on aspects of popular culture and vernacular dance forms, the show features live music and a sense of shared intimacy between dancers and audience.
Luna Gale, a new play by Pulitzer Prize-finalist Rebecca Gilman, tells the story of Caroline, a social worker, who happens upon a case that is far from typical. After meeting two teenage drug addicts, Karlie and Peter, Caroline must decide the fate of their infant daughter, Luna Gale. In an attempt to place the child with Karlie’s mother, Caroline uncovers a host of unspoken motives from everyone involved in the baby’s future. The suspenseful and timely story unfolds in the Black Box Theatre March 22-31, 2018.
The Spring BFA Dance Showcase will push the boundaries of experimental compositions further than its fall counterpart and will debut fabulous student and faculty choreography April 4-8, 2018 in the G-6 Studio of the McGuire Pavilion.
A battle between the sexes and wicked witticisms abound in George Farquhar’s The Beaux Stratagem. This new and accessible adaptation, begun by Thornton Wilder in 1939 and completed in 2006 by Tony Award-nominated playwright Ken Ludwig, brings new life to this classic Restoration comedy. Mr. Aimwell and Mr. Archer, the Beaux, have partied their fortunes away and now plan to marry for money in order to restore their former fortunes. Will their “Stratagem” succeed, or will it fall hilariously to pieces in their attempt? You can find out April 13-22, 2018 in the Constans Theatre.
About the School of Theatre + Dance
The School of Theatre + Dance is one of the University of Florida College of the Arts’ institutionally-accredited schools. Undergraduate students can pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in acting, dance, musical theatre, theatre production—including costume design, lighting design and scenic design—or a Bachelor of Arts degree in dance studies or general theatre. Minors are also offered in dance and theatre as well as certificates in arts in medicine and dance in healthcare. Student organizations, showcase programs and other intensives provide students with invaluable professional experiences. UF is home to three School of Theatre + Dance performance venues, including the Constans Theatre, Black Box Theatre and G-6 Studio. To learn more about the School of Theatre + Dance, including upcoming performance dates and ticket information, visit www.arts.ufl.edu/theatreanddance.
About the College of the Arts
The College of the Arts is one of the 16 colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. The College of the Arts offers baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its three institutionally-accredited schools — the School of Art + Art History, School of Music and School of Theatre + Dance. The college is home to the Center for Arts in Medicine, Center for Arts and Public Policy, Center for World Arts, Digital Worlds Institute, University Galleries and the New World School of the Arts in Miami. More than 100 faculty members and approximately than 1,200 students work together daily to engage, inspire and create. The college hosts more than 300 performances, exhibitions and events each year. Faculty and students also exhibit and perform at other local, national and international venues. To learn more, visit www.arts.ufl.edu.
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