KUSD Theater is presenting the community with a generous “bouquet” of 15 productions in the long-awaited, much-anticipated 2021-22 season.
The recently-released full schedule is a treasure trove of classics, new material and adaptations. As always KUSD is ready and willing to take on creative challenges.
“It’s a wonderful schedule driven by the students who auditioned,” said award-winning KUSD Theater teacher/director Holly Stanfield. “The shows were selected to fit their needs and give them an opportunity to grow.”
The season opens with Pulitzer Prize-winning “The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds” premiering Oct. 14-16 at Indian Trail High School and Academy Auditorium, 6800 60th St. The show was originally slated to open Oct. 7-9, but those performances were canceled.
This show, directed by Robert Allen, will be entered into the Wisconsin High School Theatre Festival, and competing to represent Wisconsin at the International Thespian Festival in Indiana. “Groundhog Day: The Musical” will compete to appear on the Main Stage of the International Thespian Festival.
Other well-known, well-loved works coming to KUSD stages include “Seussical,” “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” “Nunsense,” and “Beauty and the Beast.”
KUSD brings adaptations of the classic films and literature such as “The 39 Steps” and “A Year With Frog and Toad” to the stage. Newer shows and cutting edge material continue the theater program’s strong history of embracing these works with dignity.
In “The Niceties” by Eleanor Burgess, an accomplished Ivy League professor holds routine office hours with an ambitious young student to discuss her thesis: If history is written by the victors, who tells the story of the oppressed?
“Bright Star” is a musical written and composed by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell. The musical is inspired by their 2013 Grammy-winning bluegrass collaboration. Kristen Singer will direct KUSD’s production of “Bright Star,” set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina in 1945-46 with flashbacks to 1923.
As they did successfully last season, KUSD Theater is working its magic while adhering to health and safety protocols.
“This year feels closer to normal,” Stanfield said. “(The casts) and audiences will be masked, but what stands out is being able to look at each other. There will still be an audience reaction. The chemistry is so different in person.”
Admission prices for all shows are $13 for general admission, $11 for senior citizens and $6 for students and staff. Tickets are available online.
Here is a closer look at the 2021-22 schedule:
The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 14-16, Indian Trail High School and Academy, 6800 60th Ave.
Groundhog Day The Musical: 7:30 p.m Oct. 29-30 and Nov. 5-6, and a matinee 2 p.m. Oct. 31, Bradford High School, 3700 Washington Rd.
The 39 Steps: 7:30 p.m. Nov. 4-6 and 11-13, Tremper High School Studio Theater, 8560 26th Ave.
Miss Bennet Christmas at Pemberly: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 2-4, and matinee 2 p.m. Dec. 5, Bradford Studio Theater room 150.
Beauty and the Beast: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 7, 8, 14 and 15, matinees 2 p.m. Jan. 9 and 16, Bradford High School Auditorium.
The Bridges of Madison County: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 28, 29, Feb. 4, 5, and matinees at 2 p.m. Feb. 6, Bradford High School Auditorium.
The Niceties: Jan. 27-29 and Feb. 3-5 at 7:30 p.m. Tremper High School Studio Theater, room 120.
As She Likes It: 7:30 p.m., Feb. 17-19, 24-26, Indian Trail High School and Academy Auditorium.
A Year With Frog and Toad: March 31, April 1, 2, 7-9 at 7:30 p.m. Tremper High School Auditorium.
Ain’t Misbehavin’: March 31, April 1, 2 at 7:30 p.m. and April 3 at 2 p.m. Bradford High School Auditorium.
Bright Star: April 1, 2, 7, 8 at 7:30 p.m. and April 3, 9 at 2 p.m. Harborside Academy, The Ralph J. Houghton Performance Center, 823 57th St.
Seussical the Musical: April 1, 2, 8, 9 at 7:30 p.m. and April 3 and 10 at 2 p.m.Indian Trail High School and Academy Auditorium.
Nunsense: April 7-10 at 7:30 p.m. and April 9, 10 at 2 p.m. Bradford High School Auditorium.
Radio Show Ensemble (show TBD): April 28-30, May 5-7 at 7:30 p.m. Bradford High School Studio Theater, room 150.
The Secret in the Wings: May 19-21 and 26-28 at 7:30 p.m. Tremper High School Studio Theater, room 120.