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Asolo Repertory Theatre Announces 2021-22 Season

Posted: May 12 / 2021

Asolo Rep kicks off its 63rd Season by Letting the Sun Shine in with HAIR directed and choreographed by Josh Rhodes. Season Features Rescheduled Musicals: Douglas Carter Beane and Lewis Flinn’s HOOD and World Premiere of Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty and Frank Galati’s KNOXVILLE...

(SARASOTA, FL) — Asolo Repertory Theatre proudly announced its 2021-22 season today in a virtual event broadcast on their website, asolorep.org, and Facebook.

Asolo Rep kicks off in November with a musical that will set the tone for the whole season with its message of exuberant hope and love for all humanity. With its unforgettable and Grammy® award-winning score including “Good Morning Starshine” and “Aquarius,” HAIR (November 17, 2021 – January 1, 2022) features book and lyrics by Gerome Ragni and James Rado and music by Galt MacDermot. This production will be directed and choreographed by Josh Rhodes (Broadway: Bright Star, It Shoulda Been You, First Date, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella; Asolo Rep: The Sound of Music, Evita, Guys and Dolls).

The winter repertory season includes three incredible works that speak to family, community and love. The rep opens with Thornton Wilder’s 1938 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama, the timeless masterpiece OUR TOWN (January 12 - March 26, 2022), directed by Desdemona Chiang.

The rep season continues with a new comedy, straight from a smash-hit run on Broadway, GRAND HORIZONS (January 19 - April 1, 2022), written by one of the most exciting voices currently writing for the stage, Bess Wohl, and directed by Asolo Rep Associate Artistic Director Celine Rosenthal. This play takes a laugh-out-loud look at the unpredictable and enduring nature of love.

Wrapping the rep season is the smart and feisty performance of THE GREAT LEAP (February 9 - April 2, 2022) written by Lauren Yee. Directed by Vanessa Stalling, this hilarious story is at its core about family, history and learning when to take your shot.

In April, Asolo Rep proudly presents the world premiere of KNOXVILLE (April 15 – May 11, 2022), made possible by a generous grant from The Roy Cockrum Foundation. This moving and innovative musical features lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, music by Stephen Flaherty (songwriting team behind Anastasia and Once on this Island) and is adapted and directed by Frank Galati, reuniting the dynamic Tony Award®-winning creative team behind Ragtime, one of the most beloved musicals of all time. KNOXVILLE is based on James Agee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning autobiographical novel A Death in the Family and based, in part, on the play All The Way Home by Tad Mosel.

In May, Asolo Rep will present a new American play, EUREKA DAY (May 11 – June 4, 2022), by New College alum Jonathan Spector and directed by Bianca LaVerne Jones in the Cook Theatre. An explosive comedy that skewers sanctimony and the nature of our politics, EUREKA DAY asks: when does “us” become “them?” This work continues Asolo Rep’s mission to welcome new audiences and give exceptional new work the opportunity to thrive.

The season concludes with another new musical, HOOD (June 3 – 26, 2022), featuring music and lyrics by Lewis Flinn (Lysistrata Jones), a book by five-time Tony®-nominated playwright Douglas Carter Beane (Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Lysistrata Jones, Sister Act, Xanadu) and helmed by Mark Brokaw (Heisenberg, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, After Miss Julie). Rediscover Robin Hood, the renegade crusader, his Merry Band and a Maid Marian who definitely does not need saving in this madcap musical.

"After a year of immense challenges and hard-won successes, this season is about returning and remaking who we want to become,” said Asolo Rep Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards. “We return to working in rep on the Mertz stage and bring back many of the people and projects we had previously planned. But we also remake ourselves with new productions, fresh insights from new artists, and invigorating conversations with our community. The result is a challenging and hopeful season full of joy, family and a reclamation of American identity rooted in compassion for all. We are going to let the sun shine in.”

Asolo Rep will also present its annual educational tour, an FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training production of William Shakespeare’s MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. The BardWired tour presents freshly reimagined 45-minute adaptations of classic literature to schools and community venues throughout the state of Florida.

Asolo Rep subscriptions go on sale Thursday, May 13, at 10am. Details regarding subscription packages are available at asolorep.org or by calling the Box Office at 941.351.8000. Single tickets will go on sale at a to be announced date.

 

Asolo Rep 2021-22 Season

 

HAIR
November 20, 2021 – January 1, 2022
Previews November 17 – 19, 2021
Book and lyrics by Gerome Ragni and James Rado
Music by Galt MacDermot
Directed and Choreographed by Josh Rhodes

HAIR is the rock musical that started it all. This joyous rebellion proudly reclaims love as the heart of what it means to be American. Packed with music that is beautiful, irreverent and deeply evocative, the quirky, all inclusive vibe doesn’t shy away from poignant social commentary. This iconic musical and Grammy Award winning score, get an exuberant and resonant retelling in the hands of Broadway and Asolo Rep favorite, Josh Rhodes. Unforgettable numbers like “The Flesh Failures (Let the Sunshine In),” “Aquarius,” “Good Morning Starshine” and “Hair” will bring audiences to their feet!

 

OUR TOWN
January 14 – March 26, 2022
Previews January 12 – 13, 2022
By Thornton Wilder
Directed by Desdemona Chiang

Perhaps no other play rings truer today. Thornton Wilder’s magnificent OUR TOWN is, at its heart, about us. All of us who are swept up by time and subject to inescapable change. As another ordinary day begins, the inhabitants of a small American town go about their business: newspapers are delivered; people go to work; gardens are tended. And a boy and girl fall in love. But as life's events unfold, one question remains: "Do any human beings ever realize life as they live it?” Long after it won the 1938 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, OUR TOWN remains one of the most enduring American plays of all time, reminding us to celebrate love, family, community and the beauty in the ordinary.

 

GRAND HORIZONS
January 21 – April 1, 2022
Previews January 19 – 20, 2022
By Bess Wohl
Directed by Celine Rosenthal

You’re never too old to learn, but what if you learn that the person you’ve been married to for 50 years is making you miserable? Bill and Nancy practically breathe in unison; they anticipate each other’s sighs, sneezes, and ends of sentences. But just as they settle into their new retirement home in Florida, Nancy wants out. As their two adult sons struggle to cope with the news, they’re forced to question everything they assumed about the people they thought they knew best. Sophisticated, funny, delightfully – and sometimes provocatively – honest, this new Broadway hit comedy takes an intimate look at the unpredictable and enduring nature of love.

 

THE GREAT LEAP
February 11 – April 2, 2022
Previews February 9 – 10, 2022
By Lauren Yee
Directed by Vanessa Stalling

Born in the United States but inextricably tied to far off and forbidden China, Manford Lum finds his home on the basketball courts of San Francisco’s Chinatown. As fast-talking as he is athletically skilled, Lum wisecracks and dazzles his way onto a college team headed for a “friendly” exhibition game in Beijing. As the story bounces between 1989 and 1971, past relationships collide with present day revelations right up to the final buzzer. Smart, feisty and hilarious, THE GREAT LEAP is about family, history and learning that every game is a second chance.

 

KNOXVILLE
April 23 – May 11, 2022
Preview April 15 – 22, 2022
Book by Frank Galati
Music by Stephen Flaherty
Lyrics by Lynn Ahrens
Based on the novel A Death in the Family by James Agee
Based, in part, on the play All the Way Home by Tad Mosel
Directed by Frank Galati

The world premiere of KNOXVILLE is made possible by a generous grant from The Roy Cockrum Foundation. This moving and innovative new musical reunites the dynamic Tony Award®-winning creative team behind Ragtime, one of the most beloved musicals of all time. Based on James Agee's autobiographical Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, A Death in the Family, the story begins as Agee struggles to write his greatest work—about the event that touched his young life, and the effect it had on his mother, his town and his own future. A powerful illumination of the forces that shape who we are, KNOXVILLE is a universal coming-of-age story about family, faith and love—and about the boy who will grow up to write it. With a sweeping musical score and an extraordinary creative team and cast, this world premiere is a must-see event.

 

EUREKA DAY
In the Cook Theatre
May 13 – June 4, 2022
Previews May 11 – 12, 2022
By Jonathan Spector
Directed by Bianca LaVerne Jones

An illness is spreading through the progressive and painstakingly accepting Eureka Day School–and it isn’t just the mumps. When the outbreak threatens to become an epidemic it’s a race to see what will destroy this community first: the disease or each other. Despite the safe space mentality, gluten-free scones from the local bakery, and open marriages that have ‘moved beyond monogamy,’ secrets, lies, and hidden truths still run rampant. An explosive comedy that skewers sanctimony and the nature of our politics, EUREKA DAY asks: when does “us” become “them?”

 

HOOD
June 11 – 26, 2022
Previews June 3 – 10, 2022
Book by Douglas Carter Beane
Music and Lyrics by Lewis Flinn
Directed by Mark Brokaw
Choreographed by Ellenore Scott
Presented by arrangement with Tom Kirdahy and Hunter Arnold

The world’s sexiest thief. A pair of history’s greatest lovers. The Merry Band that made redistributing wealth cool. Here, finally, is the real story of the disgraced nobleman, forced into the wilderness, who seeks revenge not only for himself, but against an unjust system. He even rescues the damsel, or perhaps along the way, discovers she doesn’t need any rescuing. Five-time Tony®-nominated playwright Douglas Carter Beane– who re-invented Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella so deliciously–reunites with Lewis Flinn, his Give it Up/Lysistrata Jones collaborator, to bring to life this hilarious and stirring new musical adventure!

 

BardWired Tour
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
By William Shakespeare

Asolo Rep and the FSU/Asolo Conservatory are bringing you the next generation of Shakespeare with BardWired: MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. With this 45-minute innovative adaptation, our community will experience the Bard like never before. When confirmed bachelor Benedict spars with quick witted Beatrice, sparks fly and it’s clear to all that these two would-be lovers aren’t star-crossed, they’re just plain cross. But when best friend Claudio and cousin Hero, in the middle of their own romance, decide to play matchmaker, the only thing that can get in the way is Don John’s melancholy machinations. With only the hapless constable Dogberry to set it to rights, the future of love in Messina is anyone’s guess.

 

ABOUT ASOLO REP

Entering its 63rd season, Asolo Repertory Theatre is recognized as one of the premier professional theatres in America and one of the largest in the Southeastern United States. One of the few select theatres in the nation that performs in true rotating repertory, Asolo Rep’s highly skilled acting company and extensive craftsmanship bring to life this unique performance method that gives audiences the opportunity to see multiple productions in the span of a few days. Asolo Rep presents up to 10 productions each season including contemporary and classic works and provocative musical theatre experiences. A theatre district in and of itself, Asolo Rep is committed to expanding its reach into the community, furthering its collaboration with the best theatre artists working in the industry today and cultivating new artists through its affiliation with the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training. Under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards and Managing Director Linda DiGabriele, Asolo Rep’s ambitious theatrical offerings and ground-breaking education and community programming engage audiences and ensure its lasting legacy for future generations. Visit asolorep.org to learn more.

 

MEDIA CONTACT

Angela Lakin | 813.410.1127 | [email protected]