2018-19 Theatreworks season to feature ‘Little Shop of Horrors,’ Shakespeare

May 8, 2018

Quinita Thomas

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It’s not often that students can experience the musings of Shakespeare, the grumblings of Charles Dickens and the whimsical music of “Little Shop of Horrors.” With the Theatreworks 2018-19 season, students can experience this art every month.

    Theatreworks’ 2018-19 season begins July 26 with the opening of “Shakespeare at the Ranch” and ends with “Little Shop of Horrors” on April 26, 2019.

    Theatreworks produces about seven shows a year. The number of students and professional actors who perform in the productions depends on auditions and the directors’ specifications.  

    Lynne Hastings, artistic producer at Theatreworks, and Drew Martorella, executive director of UCCS Presents, structured the new season. According to Hastings, Theatreworks wanted to examine the themes of power, hope, love and the evolution of gentrification, comedy and tragedy.

    “We wanted a season that was artistic, but relevant in its themes,” said Hastings in an email.  

   Theatreworks hopes to audition a greater variety of students across all majors for the new season as well.     “We’d like to do more with not just Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) students, but also with students on campus in other disciplines such as business, history, philosophy, etc. There’s a lot of opportunities for us to partner with students,” Hastings said.     

    The first show of the season will be “Shakespeare at The Ranch,” which will run from July 26 – Aug 26. This production will feature “Macbeth” as well as an abridged version of “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare.”

    “Macbeth” is a play about a Scottish general named Macbeth who receives a prophecy from three witches foretelling of his royal ascension to the throne. Eager to fulfill his destiny, Macbeth murders King Duncan and proclaims himself as Scotland’s new king. However, Macbeth is soon consumed with overwhelming guilt and paranoia.

    The “Complete Works of William Shakespeare” (abridged) is a collection of all 37 plays, shortened and comically performed by three actors. The actors will be themselves instead of the actual characters, and some scenes involve direct participation from the audience.

    The next production will be “A Raisin in The Sun,” scheduled to run from Sept. 27 – Oct 21. This play depicts a poor African-American family living in Chicago during the ‘50s.

    After the tragic death of the father, the family receives a life insurance check in the amount of $10,000. They finally have an opportunity to escape poverty, but two members of the family have different ideas on how to best invest the money.

    “A Christmas Carol” will run from Nov. 29 – Dec. 24. Charles Dickens’ classic story tells the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, a miser who thinks Christmas is nothing but a humbug.

    But after Scrooge is haunted by the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, he learns the true value of kindness and generosity.

    From Jan. 24 – Feb. 10, 2019, Idris Goodwin will present his newest work at the Ent Center for the Arts. Goodwin is a widely renowned playwright, rapper, essayist and poet.

    According to the Theatreworks website, Goodwin “is one of the most dynamic and innovative playwrights in the country, and his works cover the most pressing issues facing our life and local community today.”

    The “Little Shop of Horrors” is scheduled to run from April 25 – May 19, 2019. This play is about a poor flower shop assistant who stumbles across an unusual plant that only feeds on human flesh. As the assistant tries to appease the plant’s hunger, events start to get out of hand.

    The play “Lysistrata” will run from Oct. 25 – 28. Aristophanes’ Greek comedy is a story about the women of Greece coming together to figure out a plan to end the Peloponnesian War. They sign an oath swearing to withhold sex from their husbands until the men agree to sign a peace treaty and end the war.

    “What Of the Night” is a student produced play that will conclude the Theatreworks season on May 14-24, 2019.  This play will explore the concepts of twentieth-century poverty and greed from the perspective of one of America’s greatest screenwriters. The story portrays the harsh realities of life while also celebrating the beauty of the human spirit.   

   For more information on Theatreworks’ upcoming season, visit theatreworkscs.org/upcoming-season.html.