murder mystery, a witch-hunting American classic and an award-winning
new play by company member Michael Gotch are a few of the treats that
hit the stage at the University of Delaware in the Resident Ensemble
Players (REP) 2019-20 theatre season.
“We invite our audience members to join us in celebrating the power,
joy and wonder of live theatre,” said Sanford (Sandy) Robbins, producing
artistic director of the REP, the professional acting company in
residence at the University.
“Modern classics and world and regional premieres combine to create a
deeply moving, laugh-out-loud funny, and thought-provoking season that
explores the depth, playfulness and mutability of being human. We look
forward to the season-long conversation these plays will inspire.”
A complete schedule and information on subscription and single tickets can be found on the REP’s website, by calling the REP box office at 302-831-2204, or by visiting the box office in the Roselle Center for the Arts.
General public single tickets range from $20 to $37; discounts are available for students, seniors and UD faculty and staff.
REP season at a glance
August: Osage County by Tracy Letts, Sept. 26-Oct. 13
This funny, furious family reunion from hell begins when patriarch
Beverly Weston disappears into the hot summer night. His three daughters
rush to the family homestead with their families to care for their
mother, the pill-popping and fiercely manipulative Violet. Trapped in
the house together for the first time in years, dishes and insults fly
in this Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning story about the complex
humor, wit and sorrow of our most intimate connections.
Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, adapted by Ken Ludwig, Nov. 7-24
Hercule Poirot is a world-class detective and an unflinching agent of
justice. When a train ride home on the luxurious Orient Express turns
deadly, Poirot is thrust into a dangerous game that pushes him to his
limits. He must untangle a web of mystery, murder and a train full of
potential suspects before the killer escapes in this off-the-rails
thriller of suspense and fun.
Starter Pistol by Michael Gotch, Jan. 16-Feb. 2
In a withering Midwest town, Karen James—wife, mother and
breadwinner— has enough venison chili to survive the approaching winter
but is being pushed to the edge by her husband’s work injury and her
son’s misbehavior. A visit from a stranger promises relief but only if
Karen and her family can survive secrets from the past. Winner of the
Ashland New Play Festival's 2019 competition, Starter Pistol is a roller coaster ride of tension and laughter, a story of a family holding itself together in the toughest of times.
The Crucible by Arthur Miller, March 5-22
When a group of teenage girls is caught dancing naked in the woods
outside of a tiny Puritan town, an investigation into their
mischief-making derails into madness and hysteria when accusations of
witchcraft fly. As the Salem witch trials proceed, Miller’s classic
drama winds fear, paranoia, lust and greed into a real American tragedy.
Written in 1953 under the shadow of McCarthyism, Miller’s masterpiece
remains a gripping historical play and a timely parable.
The Whipping Man by Matthew Lopez, April 16-May 10
The Civil War is over and the Confederacy has fallen. On the eve of
Passover, Caleb, a young Jewish Confederate soldier with a bullet lodged
in his leg, returns to the remains of his Virginia house and his
family’s former slaves, Simon and John. Stuck together by circumstance
but separated by secrets, the three men must work together first to just
survive and then to prepare a simple Passover Seder, a Jewish
celebration of freedom from slavery that holds unique meaning in a new
American era. The Whipping Man is a powerful play that grapples
with taking accountability for one’s past and building a foundation on
which to grow something new.
Round and Round the Garden by Alan Ayckbourn, April 25-May 10
A hilarious tale of three couples looking for love and satisfaction
anywhere but their own bedrooms. Annie has grown weary of caring for her
ailing mother and has decided to take a break with an amorous weekend
in the country. Delightful trouble ensues when her intended
companion—her sister’s husband—arrives early, forcing Annie, her two
sisters, and all their love interests into their mother’s house for a
weekend of missed connections, misread signals and madcap humor.
REP productions are made possible, in part, by a grant from the
Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency dedicated to nurturing and
supporting the arts in Delaware, in partnership with the National
Endowment for the Arts.
About the REP
The Resident Ensemble Players (REP) is a professional theatre company
located at the University of Delaware. The REP’s mission is to engage
audiences throughout the tristate region with frequent productions of
outstanding classic, modern and contemporary plays performed in a wide
variety of styles that celebrate and demonstrate the range and breadth
of each resident actor in this ensemble of nationally respected stage
actors who have been trained in the same way. The REP is committed to
create future audiences for live theatre by offering its productions at
low prices that enable and encourage the attendance of everyone in the
region, regardless of income.
Article by Nadine Howatt; photo by Evan Krape
Published Sept. 11, 2019