The beginning of the semester brings more than just excitement about new classes and new friends; for the avid college-age theatergoer, the beginning of the semester holds promise for the upcoming campus productions. Though it’ll be hard to beat last season’s shows — which included a Mainstage smash-hit musical and, from our smaller theatre groups on campus, a three-act play and a musical with an intensely difficult score — many of this semester’s well-known titles have the potential to be triumphs. Here is Pipe Dream’s rundown of the semester’s productions so you won’t miss a single opening curtain.
February 19 and 20: “The Vagina Monologues” (DCP) — The Dickinson Community Players (DCP) are set to kick off this semester’s on-campus theatre scene with their annual production of “The Vagina Monologues.” The play, which premiered in 1996, was written by Eve Ensler, who created the show based on a series of interviews she conducted with women of various ages and backgrounds on the subject of, you guessed it, vaginas. This year’s production will be directed by Eliza Gellis.
March 4 through 13: “Dancing at Lughnasa” (Mainstage) — The Binghamton University theatre department’s own spring season begins with Brian Freil’s drama, which will be directed by assistant professor Elizabeth Mozer. Set in the 1930s, the play examines the internal structure of an Irish family, the Mundys, during a celebration of the changing of seasons: the festival of Lughnasa. However, throughout the show, moments of celebration and dancing are sharply contrasted with moments of distraught that accompany the familial and financial hardships within the Mundys’ lives.
March 17 through 19: “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead” (HPC) — Though unaffiliated with the Mainstage production of “Hamlet” at the end of the semester, you can get a sneak peak of Shakespeare’s classic with the Hinman Production Company’s (HPC) performance of Thomas Stoppard’s acclaimed spin-off play. The absurdist piece includes guest appearances from all the major characters of “Hamlet,” in scenes created from insinuations of events in the original tragedy, as well as direct quotes from the play. Director(s) for the production will be chosen this week.
April 14 through 16: “Godspell” (HPC) — HPC’s second production of the semester, “Godspell,” is a musical retelling of biblical stories. With music by Stephen Schwartz, the creative mind behind the music of hits like “Pippin” and “Wicked,” the brilliant score can’t be missed. Director(s) for the production will be chosen this week.
April 29 and 30: “The Rocky Horror Show” (DCP) — Before “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” there was “The Rocky Horror Show.” The music of the cult-classic movie directly originates from the musical, which retains the same science fiction kitsch and over-dramatic scenes. Something of a modern classic, the production is sure to be a wild experience for all involved. Marisa Freeman has been chosen to direct this production.
April 29 through May 8: “Hamlet” (Mainstage) — The BU theatre department closes this semester’s theatre season with one of the most beloved tragedies in English history: William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet.” Even though you’ve likely read the play for a class at some point, you shouldn’t pass up this opportunity to see it staged. The play’s director, professor Anne Brady, auditioned both males and females for the play’s namesake role, and has cast junior and Mainstage regular Danielle Nigro as Hamlet.
DCP’s shows will be performed in the C4 multi-purpose room, HPC’s shows will be performed at the Hinman Commons and both Mainstage shows will be performed at the Watters Theater.