World Premiere of WATER FOR ELEPHANTS and More Set For Alliance Theatre's 2022/23 Season

Other productions include Everybody, A Christmas Carol, The Hot Wing King, and more!

By: Apr. 13, 2022
World Premiere of WATER FOR ELEPHANTS and More Set For Alliance Theatre's 2022/23 Season

The Alliance Theatre has announced the productions in its 54th season. The new season will feature nine productions including four world premieres on its two stages, The Coca-Cola Stage and Hertz Stage.

"Our upcoming season is a celebration of joy, and all the varied places and circumstances in which we find it," said Susan V. Booth, Jennings Hertz Artistic Director. "While each story is unique, the human ability to find hope and joy is universal and powerful. Join us for these remarkable and inspiring stories."

The 54th season on The Coca-Cola Stage begins in September with the acclaimed play EVERYBODY. With EVERYBODY, Pulitzer Prize finalist and Obie Award-winning playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins has created an irreverent, rollicking, uproarious ride that asks BIG questions of all who see it. The Alliance's production will be co-directed by Jennings Hertz Artistic Director Susan V. Booth and BOLD Associate Artistic Director Tinashe Kajese-Bolden.

For the holidays, the Alliance will present the timeless family story, A CHRISTMAS CAROL, for the second time with its new production design and staging. Following its inaugural run last season, the new adaptation was described in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as "high art of the season... a nostalgic feast for the eyes." And ArtsATL encouraged audiences to, "bring your kids, bring your friends, bring a rapacious billionaire if you know's certain they'll enjoy the Alliance's production." The Alliance will also produce CLUB HERTZ PRESENTS: A GIFT OF LOVE WITH ADAM L. MCKNIGHT. McKnight will delight audiences nightly with a mix of original songs and holiday classics performed in a variety of styles like jazz, R&B, Gospel, and pop.

In January 2023, the Alliance will produce the regional premiere of THE HOT WING KING. Winner of the 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, THE HOT WING KING is a fierce new comedy about the risks and rewards of celebrating who you are. Directed for the first time by its award-winning playwright Katori Hall, THE HOT WING KING has been called "flavorful and bitingly funny" by New York Stage Review, and "a delicious new play to be applauded and savored" by Talkin' Broadway.

Following on the Hertz Stage, the Alliance will produce the world premiere of the 19th winner of the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition, THE MANY WONDROUS REALITIES OF JASMINE STARR-KIDD, by Stephen Brown of The Juilliard School. JASMINE STARR-KIDD is a delightful story of second chances and accepting what we can't change. Past winners of the Alliance/Kendeda Playwriting Competition have become some of today's most exciting playwrights and writers, including Tarell Alvin McCraney, whose play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue inspired the 2017 Academy Award-winning film for Best Picture, Moonlight; Mike Lew (Tiger Style!), 2018 winner of the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award for an Emerging American Playwright; and Jiréh Breon Holder, whose winning play Too Heavy For Your Pocket received multiple productions including an Off-Broadway run in 2017.

Jennings Hertz Artistic Director Susan V. Booth will then direct LONELY PLANET by Stephen Dietz. Described as "an entertaining, powerful, and heartfelt experience that should not be missed" (DC Metro), LONELY PLANET is an intimate portrait of two friends navigating life at the height of an epidemic. Written almost 30 years ago, Dietz's funny, hopeful, and deeply human play continues to ring true as a commentary on the value of friendship and community during uncertain times.

Closing the season on The Coca-Cola Stage in the Summer of 2023, the Alliance will produce the world premiere musical, WATER FOR ELEPHANTS. Based on the critically acclaimed and best-selling novel by Sara Gruen, WATER FOR ELEPHANTS is an adventure filled with romance, deception, and a little bit of magic, all under the big top of a traveling circus. Brought to theatrical life by an internationally acclaimed and innovative creative team, WATER FOR ELEPHANTS will reignite your dreams of running away with the circus. This world premiere musical is directed by Jessica Stone (Kimberly Akimbo), with a book by Rick Elice (Jersey Boys, Peter and the Starcatcher), and a score by the award-winning PigPen Theatre Co.

The Alliance will produce two world-premiere musicals for youth and families beginning with THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY, playing on the Hertz Stage, July 13 - August 14, 2022. Inspired by award-winning children's book author Oliver Jeffers' hilarious book, THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY celebrates the joy of reading and the insatiable appetite for knowledge. THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY is presented in partnership with the High Museum of Art's exhibition Oliver Jeffers: 15 Years of Picturing Books. The Alliance will also co-produce THE BOY WHO KISSED THE SKY inspired by the early life and influences of musical icon Jimi Hendrix. Told with vibrant music and daring imagination, this new family musical inspires audiences to dream big when it matters most. THE BOY WHO KISSED THE SKY is a co-production with Seattle Children's Theatre.

In addition to these nine productions, the Alliance Theatre's Kathy & Ken Bernhardt Theatre for the Very Young will produce four plays developed specifically for newborns through five-year-olds and their families. These productions include the bilingual play, THE LIZARD AND EL SOL; the charming play about courage, DO YOU LOVE THE DARK; the holiday celebration (KNOCK, KNOCK); and the world premiere, ALL SMILES, which is currently being developed in partnership with the Marcus Autism Center and joyfully explores the different ways all of us show, share, and process our emotions.

When possible, live performances of the 54th season will be filmed and made available for streaming on the Alliance Theatre's streaming platform, Alliance Theatre Anywhere.

New Play Development

The Alliance will continue its important work developing new plays through its Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition and its Reiser Atlanta Artists Lab.

The Alliance is pleased to announce the finalists of the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition. These plays will receive developmental workshops and staged readings as part of the Alliance/Kendeda Week celebrating news works in 2023. The finalists of the 2022/23 season are:

  • Ruth and Lydia, by Jamie Rubenstein, Hunter College
  • Ridgway, by Charlie O'Leary, University of Iowa
  • Memorial, by Adam Ashraf El-Sayigh and Arianna Gayle Stucki, Brooklyn College
  • How to Bruise Gracefully, by Brittany Fisher, The Juilliard School

The Alliance is also pleased to announce the artistic projects chosen for its 8th Reiser Atlanta Artists Lab. These projects will receive $10,000 to use toward further exploration and development, as well as access to the Alliance's artistic, education, and production staffs, and rehearsal spaces. The lab projects will be presented in free performances in the Spring of 2023. The projects are:

  • Daughter House 5, Lead Artist: Jeff Mather; Supporting Artists: Marquetta Johnson and John Edward Doyle, Jr.
  • Man of Wood, Man of Fire, Lead Artist: Dwight Andrews; Supporting Artists: Louis Massiah and Ben Polite
  • Trojan Women, Lead Artist: Frankie Mulinix; Supporting Artists: Jase Wingate and Humlao Evans

Memberships for the Alliance's 54th season are on sale now. For more information, visit

Single tickets will go on sale in July 2022. Single tickets for THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY are on sale now. Visit for updates.


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