Theatre and Dance Season

Theatre and Dance Series is the main production season of the Department of Theatre and Dance, consisting of five to seven theatrical productions and three dance concerts annually.  Works to be performed are specifically chosen to expose students to the broad spectrum of dramatic and choreographic literature, including timeless classics and contemporary genres. Policies for non-traditional casting ensure equal opportunity for students to explore diverse roles and stretch themselves artistically. Each project is directed and/or choreographed by resident or guest artist directors and choreographers and performed by the Department’s theatre and dance majors.

Production Manager: Peter Davis; 973-655-4205

Fall 2017 – Spring 2018 Schedule

Carrie

Book by: Lawrence D. Cohen
Lyrics by: Dean Pitchford
Music by: Michael Gore
Adapted from the novel by Stephen King

Directed by: Matt Williams
Choreography by: Kim Whittam
Music Direction by: Greg Dlugos
Conducted by: Barry Spatz

Location: Memorial Auditorium
Price: $15

Dates:

  • Friday, October 20, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 21, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, October 22, 2:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, October 25, 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, October 26, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, October 27, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday. October 28, 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 28, 8:00 p.m.

Carrie knew she should not use the terrifying power she possessed… but one night at her senior prom, Carrie was humiliated just one time too many. Based on the best-selling thriller by Stephen King, the cult musical Carrie tells the story of misfit high school senior, Carrie White, who discovers that she has telekinetic powers. Repressed by a demented mother and taunted by her peers, Carrie’s efforts to fit in lead to the most tragic and shocking climax in musical theater history. Set in its original time period of the 1970’s, Carrie features a book by Lawrence D. Cohen (screenwriter of the film), music by Academy Award winner Michael Gore (Fame, Terms of Endearment), and lyrics by Academy Award winner Dean Pitchford (Fame, Footloose).

Twelfth Night

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Mark Hardy

Location: Kasser Theater
Price: $20.00

Dates:

  • Thursday, November 9, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, November 10, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 11, 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 11, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 12, 2:00 p.m.

Lovers and fools – all of them misguided, mismatched, and misunderstood – tangle in Shakespeare’s song-filled comedy set along the adventurous shores of Illyria. In the spirit of the dashing Count Orsino’s opening plea “If music be the food of love, play on …”, this bittersweet farce seduces us down the thorny path of romance.

Company

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by George Furth
Directed by John Housseoi
Choreography by Todd Underwood

Location: L Howard Fox Theatre
Price: $15.00

Dates:

  • Wednesday, December 6, 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, December 7, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, December 8, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 9, 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 9, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 10, 2:00 p.m.

A 1970 Broadway sensation, Company explores the trials and tribulations of modern love as seen through the eyes of musical theatre’s most beloved commitment-phobe, Bobby. With music and lyrics by celebrated composer Stephen Sondheim, Company delves into relationships through a series of vignettes with the wry and clever insight that made the American songsmith famous.

Matzukaze (Wind in the Pines)

Matzukaze by Ka’nami, revised by Zeami
Directed by Mercedes Murphy

Location: Life Hall Studio Theatre
Price: Free

Dates:

  • Thursday, December 7, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, December 8, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 9, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 10, 2:00 p.m.

A young monk traveling through a seaside town encounters the bewitching ghosts of two lovelorn sisters.  Experimental director Mercedes Murphy and an ensemble of MSU actors re-interpret Japanese Noh classics Matzukaze with physically charged storytelling.

A White House Cantata

Music by Leonard Bernstein
Lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner
Directed by Gary John La Rose

Location: Jed Leshowitz Recital Hall
Price: $15.00

Dates:

  • Thursday, February 1, 8:00 p.m.
  • Friday, February 2, 8:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 3, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, February 4, 2:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, Feb 4, 8:00 p.m. (Snow)

A concert presentation of master composer’s Leonard Bernstein’s 1976 musical, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, White House Cantata features the beloved songs that embrace the gamut of styles; anthems, blues, drinking songs, Dixieland, jazz, hymns, marches and a cappella barbershop harmonies, that The New York Times calls “quintessentially American.”

Anything Goes

Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter
Book by Guy Bolton and P.G. Woodhouse,
revised by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse

Location: Alexander Kasser Theater
Price:
$20.00

Dates:

  • Friday, February 23, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 24, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, February 25, 2:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, February 27, 2:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, February 28, 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, March 1, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, March 2, 7:30 p.m.

Mishaps and mistaken identities make for musical theatre mayhem on the high seas in Cole Porter’s 1936 tap extravaganza. With infectious songs like “I Get a Kick Out of You” and “You’re the Top,” you’ll be humming in your seat as the award-winning MSU Musical Theatre Department dazzles you with dance and delight.

Mad Forest

By Caryl Churchill
Directed by Susan Kerner

Location: L Howard Fox Theatre
Price: $15.00

Dates:

  • Wednesday, March 21, 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, March 22, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, March 23, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 24, 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 24, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, March 25, 2:00 p.m.

By one of England’s most original voices in contemporary theatre, Caryl Churchill, Mad Forest recounts the days of the 1989 Romanian revolution. With an immersive staging by faculty director Susan Kerner, this three-act play explores how an oppressive political regime affects the lives of everyday people, and the lengths they will go to fight it.

NWI

Civics and Humanities for Non-Majors
By Jeff Talbot
Directed by Wes Grantom

Location: L Howard Fox Theatre
Price: $15.00

Dates:

  • Wednesday, April 18, 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, April 19, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, April 20, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 21, 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 21, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 22, 2:00 p.m.

People got it together to write the Constitution, so why can’t two student action groups get a single sentence on paper to form a charter? Finding the right words can be the hardest thing in the world. Two stories. One story. Their story. Our story. A thorny comic drama about getting things started.

In the Red and Brown Water

By Tarell Alvin McCraney
Directed by Debbie Saivetz

Location: Life Hall Studio Theatre
Price: Free

Dates:

  • Thursday, April 19, 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, April 20, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 21, 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 22, 2:00 p.m.

Fast, spirited Oya is a promising young athlete who is offered a scholarship that could jump-start her future. Forced to choose between her dying mother and her own dreams, she makes a life-changing decision. Oya’s subsequent path to womanhood leads her to a crossroads where she finds herself torn between settling down… and just settling.

In the Red and Brown Water is inspired by Federico Garcia Lorca’s Yerma, and draws upon Yoruba traditions and stories, both Caribbean and African. It is the first part of McCraney’s acclaimed trilogy The Brother/Sister Plays