American Repertory Theater Announces 2018/19 Season

American Repertory Theater Announces 2018/19 Season

American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.), has announced its 2018/19 programming, including subscription offerings, A.R.T. Breakout, Live @ OBERON, and Afterglow @ OBERON. The announced shows will perform at A.R.T.'s two venues in Harvard Square, Cambridge: the Loeb Drama Center, located at 64 Brattle Street, and at club theater OBERON, located at 2 Arrow Street.

2018/19 Season subscriptions go on sale to A.R.T. select donors beginning Tuesday, May 29 and to renewing subscribers on Monday, June 4. Subscriptions will go on sale to the general public on Monday, June 18. Packages start as low as $99. More information can be found at, by visiting the Ticket Services at the Loeb Drama Center (64 Brattle Street, Cambridge), or by calling 617.547.8300.

Single tickets for individual productions will go on sale to member-level donors and above on Thursday, June 28 and to the general public throughout the year.

"The 2018/19 Season is marked by its international scope, lifting up stories from the Harlem of Langston Hughes to the streets of contemporary Cairo, from a small island in South Korea to the barber shops of Accra, Kampala, and Johannesburg," says A.R.T. Artistic Director Diane Paulus. "I am thrilled to be celebrating my tenth anniversary at the A.R.T. with a season embodying our commitment to daring new work that expands the boundaries of theater. Featuring multiple world premieres, next season will engage audiences around vital stories of resistance and resilience from around the globe."


World premiere

Adapted from Langston Hughes' poem by Davóne Tines and Michael Schachter

Music by Michael Schachter

Directed by Zack Winokur

August 31 - September 23, 2018 at Loeb Drama Center

The Black Clown is a music theater experience that animates a Black man's resilience against America's legacy of oppression. Featuring Davóne Tines (Crossing, Run AMOC! Festival at A.R.T.) in the title role and a new score by Michael Schachter, this production fuses vaudeville, opera, jazz, and spirituals to bring Hughes' verse to life onstage.


Directed by Diane Paulus

November 16 - 30, 2018 at Loeb Drama Center

In celebration of Terrie and Bradley Bloom Artistic Director Diane Paulus' 10th anniversary season, journey back through memorable musical moments from A.R.T. productions. Paulus unites a roster of A.R.T. artists from the past 10 seasons for this special event.


By Inua Ellams

Directed by Bijan Sheibani

A Fuel, National Theatre, and West Yorkshire Playhouse co-production

December 5, 2018 - January 5, 2019 at Loeb Drama Center

Newsroom and political platform, confession box and stadium-for generations, barber shops have been places where African men gather to discuss the world. Leaping from London to Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos, and Accra, Inua Ellams' dynamic new play traces the global ties between these spaces where the banter can be barbed and the truth is always telling. Barber Shop Chronicles arrives in Cambridge as part of its US premiere tour following critically acclaimed runs at London's National Theatre and the West Yorkshire Playhouse.


By William Shakespeare

Directed by Bill Rauch

An Oregon Shakespeare Festival Production

January 13 - February 9, 2019 at Loeb Drama Center

In Shakespeare's most intimate tragedy, director Bill Rauch (All the Way, Fingersmith) explores society's polarizing struggles with difference. Consumed by their bigotry and xenophobia, those who praised the Moorish general Othello for his military successes now reject his marriage to Desdemona. The newlyweds are determined to overcome this resentment, but Othello's assignment in Cyprus draws them into the web of his lieutenant Iago, whose jealousy knows no bounds. A.R.T. brings the original company of Oregon Shakespeare Festival's acclaimed production to Cambridge.


World premiere

By Celine Song

Directed by Sammi Cannold

February 26 - March 17, 2019 at Loeb Drama Center

On the Korean island of Man-Jae, three elderly women spend their dying days diving into the ocean and harvesting seafood with rusty knives. They are "haenyeos"-sea women-and they have no heirs to their millennium-old tradition. Directed by Sammi Cannold (Violet at A.R.T., Ragtime on Ellis Island), Celine Song's Endlings follows these extraordinary women both on land and underwater as they swim beneath the waves and reach beyond the shores of their tiny island.


World premiere

Book, Music and Lyrics by Daniel Lazour and Patrick Lazour

Directed by Taibi Magar

May 14 - June 16, 2019 at Loeb Drama Center

Inspired by the young Egyptians who took to the streets to overthrow President Hosni Mubarak in 2011, this new musical follows six revolutionary students armed with laptops and cameras, guitars and spray cans as they come of age in a contemporary Cairo. Winner of the 2016 Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theater.

Formerly known as OBERON Presents, the A.R.T. Breakout series presents cutting-edge performances that push theatrical boundaries at OBERON and beyond. Tickets to A.R.T. Breakout performances are available as add-ons to subscription packages-single tickets will go on sale to the general public later this year.


Written and performed by Daniel Jenkins and Melissa Van Der Schyff

Featuring the songs of Randy Newman and Lucinda Williams

September 13 - 23, 2018 at OBERON

Borrowed Cash (the band that claims their versions of Randy Newman and Lucinda Williams' hits are even more original than the originals) skyrocketed to international popularity with their Grammy-winning record Passionate Kisses, but their success was soon derailed by a shocking scandal that shook the music industry. After years of silence, Borrowed Cash: Busted! The Reunion Tour reunites original band members and estranged lovers Ann Marie Mayfield and Harper Stanton onstage for the first time in 15 years. This multi-media live concert event will include their unique** hits and revealing documentary footage.

**Randy Newman and Lucinda Williams songs as subject to pending court ruling 234 penal code 7


Created by Daniel Alexander Jones

Original Songs by Jomama Jones, Laura Jean Anderson, Bobby Halvorson, Dylan Meek, and Josh Quat

November 7 - 11, 2018 at OBERON

Daniel Alexander Jones performs as the iconic Jomama Jones in a spiritual revival for turbulent times. This intimate journey through the darkness of personal and political upheaval and the shards of shattered illusions is illuminated by spontaneous humor and what The New Yorker calls Jones' "very particular radiance." Drawing musical influence from Prince, Sade, Diana Ross, and Tina Turner, Black Light is marked significantly by the Black American Freedom movement, Afromysticism, goddess mythology, and divination. This immersive performance piece removes the barrier between artist and audience through inquiry, story, and song.


Created and performed by Sara Porkalob

March 20 - April 6, 2019 at OBERON

After a run at OBERON in the spring of 2018, virtuosic performer Sara Porkalob returns with Dragon Lady, and also turns her attention to another chapter of her family's history with Dragon Mama, the second piece in her Dragon Cycle.


It is the year of the Water Dragon and the eve of Grandma Maria's 60th birthday. By the light of the karaoke machine, fueled by pork dumplings and Diet Pepsi, she shares a dark secret from her Filipino gangster past with one lucky grandchild. Traversing 50 years of faulty family memories, Seattle-based performer Sara Porkalob returns to share this timely new musical about what it means to come to America.


How does a Dragon earn her wings? Maria Porkalob, Jr. yearns for a gayer, more POC-filled life than Bremerton, WA can offer. When presented with an opportunity to make a quick fortune, Maria must make an important decision: leave her debt-ridden mother, four young siblings, and newborn daughter for the wild unknown of Alaska, or stay close to home, family, and intergenerational trauma. The second play in her Dragon Cycle, Sara Porkalob's new solo show traverses 25 years of her mother's life filled with queer love in a barren land, a dope 90s R&B soundtrack, and Filipino gangsters. This is Dragon Mama.


Created & Performed by Diana Oh

April 24 - 28, 2019 at OBERON

Diana Oh is a witch. She knows it. So do her closest friends. Clairvoyance runs in her family. She went to a spiritual counselor in the jungle in Thailand, and the spiritual counselor told her to sing and go wild in Boston. Everything else the spiritual counselor said came true, so Diana is doing it. Clairvoyance is an exchange of energy designed to bypass the bullshit and celebrate the knowledge of our bodies. It's a concert, it's a party, with moments of divination. Diana Oh performs her original soul, pop, rock, and punk music from journal entries and the beyond. She is one of Refinery 29's Top 14 LGBTQ Influencers, creator of {my lingerie play}, and the first Queer Korean-American interviewed on Korean Broadcast Radio. Upworthy and The Wall Street Journal call her "Badass." The New York Times calls her "Irreverent." You can call her "Friend."

Afterglow @ OBERON features playwrights, cabaret performers, and solo artists in a collaborative series curated by Quin Cox, founder of Provincetown's annual Afterglow Festival. Past performers include Joey Arias, Erin Markey, Johnny Blazes, and Lady Bunny. Tickets to Afterglow @ OBERON performances are available as add-ons to subscription packages-single tickets will go on sale to the general public later this year.

Tori Scott: Tori Scott IS THIRSTY on October 11, 2018 at 8PM

"The Bette Midler of the new millennium" (Provincetown Magazine) performs a shameless musical journey of autobiographical stories.

• TAJA LINDLEY: THE BAG LADY MANIFESTA on November 15, 2018 at 8PM

An installation and performance ritual through movement, burlesque, and more for a world that treats Black life as if it is disposable.

Dan Fishback: Dan Fishback ALONE! on January 17, 2019 at 8PM

The playwright, performer, musician, and director performs a repertoire of queer desire and disaster from his solo career, band, and musicals.


Manchildblack and Monstah Black fuse music, dance, theater, and fashion to expand minds, shake bootys, and encourage all to be bold, be brave, and be you.


A goldfish funeral, gay romps into the land of make-believe, and some earnest questions about irony using and abusing iconic songs from Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.

• SVEN RATZKE: AMSTERDAM TO MARS on April 18, 2019 at 8PM

Featuring songs by Brecht, Bowie, Weill, and Wainwright, prepare to meet pimps, lovers, angels, and devils in this intimate cabaret performance.

Live @ OBERON includes an eclectic array of musical artists for exceptional original performances. Tickets to Live @ OBERON performances are available as add-ons to subscription packages-single tickets will go on sale to the general public later this year.

• STL GLD on August 3, 2018

The Boston Music Award-winning hip hop group returns to kick off Live @ OBERON.

• CAMINO 84 on September 7, 2018

Local disco/funk band brings special guests for an immersive live music experience.


Music, theater, film, and poetry combine to examine the radical history of resistance within the communities of the African diaspora.

• BILLY Dean Thomas on November 2, 2018

Also known as "The Queer B.I.G", Billy Dean is a musician who challenges the hip hop game with lyrics that align with #blacklivesmatter and intersectional feminism.


Back for a third year, The Sweetback Sisters bring their signature take on the Holiday sing-along to OBERON, complete with Christmas trivia.

Spring artists will be announced at a later date.

A.R.T. will present the American Modern Opera Company's second annual Run AMOC! Festival in December 2018. An opera company comprised of a diverse collective of singers, dancers, instrumentalists, a director, and a composer, AMOC aims to expand the definition and reach of opera in our world through collaborative, interdisciplinary work. Festival programming will be announced at a later date.

The long-running hit THE DONKEY SHOW, directed by Diane Paulus, continues for its 10th season at OBERON every Saturday night. Delivering the ultimate disco experience, the crazy circus of mirror balls and feathered divas, of roller skaters and hustle queens is inspired by Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. The glitter-filled party rages on the dance floor to all the best 70s hits as the show unfolds around the audience. After the show, the party continues into the night so you can live out your fever fantasy.

The Donkey Show is currently in performance and continues every Saturday night throughout the summer.

As the A.R.T. pursues its mission to expand the boundaries of theater on its stages in Cambridge, the theater's work continues to reach audiences elsewhere in the US and around the world.

Waitress (A.R.T. premiere August 2015) continues performances on Broadway at the Brooks Atkinson Theater and its national tour across the US. Notes from the Field (A.R.T. premiere August 2016) will play at the Royal Court in June 2018 and is currently available on HBO. The immersive phenomenon Sleep No More (A.R.T. premiere October 2009) has celebrated its seventh year running at The McKittrick Hotel Off-Broadway and at The McKinnon Hotel in Shanghai.

American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) at Harvard University is a leading force in the American theater, producing groundbreaking work in Cambridge and beyond. A.R.T. was founded in 1980 by Robert Brustein, who served as Artistic Director until 2002, when he was succeeded by Robert Woodruff. Diane Paulus began her tenure as Artistic Director in 2008. Under the leadership of Paulus as the Terrie and Bradley Bloom Artistic Director and Executive Producer Diane Borger, A.R.T. seeks to expand the boundaries of theater by programming events that immerse audiences in transformative theatrical experiences.

Throughout its history, A.R.T. has been honored with many distinguished awards including the Tony Award for Best New Play for All the Way (2014); consecutive Tony Awards for Best Revival of a Musical for Pippin (2013) and The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess (2012), both of which Paulus directed, and sixteen other Tony Awards since 2012; a Pulitzer Prize; a Jujamcyn Prize for outstanding contribution to the development of creative talent; the Tony Award for Best Regional Theater; and numerous Elliot Norton and IRNE Awards.

A.R.T. collaborates with artists around the world to develop and create work in new ways. It is currently engaged in a number of multi-year projects, including a collaboration with Harvard's Center for the Environment that will result in the development of new work over several years. Under Paulus' leadership, the A.R.T.'s club theater, OBERON, has been an incubator for local and emerging artists and has attracted national attention for its innovative programming and business models.

As the professional theater on the campus of Harvard University, A.R.T. catalyzes discourse, interdisciplinary collaboration, and creative exchange among a wide range of academic departments, institutions, students, and faculty members, acting as a conduit between its community of artists and the university. A.R.T. mentors students in the Harvard Radcliffe Dramatic Club working at the Loeb Drama Center and OBERON, and plays a central role in Harvard's undergraduate Theater, Dance & Media concentration, teaching courses in directing, dramatic literature, acting, voice, design, and dramaturgy.

Dedicated to making great theater accessible, A.R.T. actively engages more than 5,000 community members and local students annually in project-based partnerships, workshops, conversations with
artists, and other enrichment activities both at the theater and across the Greater Boston area.

Through all of these initiatives, A.R.T. is dedicated to producing world-class performances in which the audience is central to the theatrical experience.

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