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The Provincetown Theater Announces 2022 Lineup Including The World Premiere of Sarah Schulman's THE LADY HAMLET

Learn more about the lineup here!

The Provincetown Theater Announces 2022 Lineup Including The  World Premiere of Sarah Schulman's  THE LADY HAMLET

One of the oldest regional theaters on Cape Cod surges forward into 2022. While the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted the performing arts due to physical distancing requirements and the closure of physical venues, the Provincetown Theater survived the crisis and made critical investments in staffing and the institution.

The 2022 season brings the world-premiere of Sarah Schulman's rollickingly smart, gender-defying comedy The Lady Hamlet, a play with big heart, deep curiosity, and serious laughs. The season also includes the re-premiere of Mae West's banned comedic melodrama The Drag, as well as the Cape Cod premiere of Stephen Karam's Tony-winning Best Play of 2016, The Humans, Robert Chesley's 1986 boundary-breaking gay classic, Jerker, and Nia Vardalos's play adaptation of Cheryl Strayed's bestseller, Tiny Beautiful Things.

"Our world has changed over the past two years. We've grieved. We've had to pause and learn to pivot. And I believe we've grown. All of which inform our exciting re-entrance into the arena of storytelling here at the Provincetown Theater. After a year online and a summer outside, I'm eager to bring us back into our playhouse at 238 Bradford Street - and on the 20th anniversary of its founding! With that in mind, we're keeping our promise to continue presenting well-established, impeccably crafted American plays for our community," says David Drake, artistic director of the Provincetown Theater since 2017.

The abbreviated 2021 season required the Theater to think entirely outside the box. The solution was to create an outdoor venue that was comfortable for the performers and patrons. They entertained full houses, becoming a respite for Cape Coders while many regional theaters remained shuttered. The Provincetown Theater never considered closing during the pandemic. It was vital to remain a place where patrons could come together and feel a sense of community without fear. The Theater has been a sanctuary during turbulent times since its inception in the early 1960s. The Theater, located in the heart of Provincetown, Massachusetts, has been a safe space for the LGBTQ+ community for over 50 years. During the race riots of the 1960s, the AIDS epidemic, and so many other social and political challenges, the Provincetown Theater has remained a lively community space for Cape Cod.

"When David Drake and I first started talking about how we would remain open in 2021, we were in the middle of the lockdown, and I knew I didn't want it to feel like we were sitting in a parking lot. I wanted it to be a place where we could feel like we could safely come back into community with each other. All of us had been by ourselves in one form or another, so I wanted it to feel like it was a place of respite. The community could come to this place. They could take a breath again, literally, and not be afraid to be together and be entertained," says David Wilson, the Provincetown Theater's Board of Trustees president since 2016.

"Because of the fear that people had been experiencing for so long, and because, as theater makers, we had been estranged from the thing that we do - the way we make community, it felt important for us to create a safe environment. Once again, we were comfortable making theater and bringing our gifts to bear in that safe space," says David Drake, artistic director.

The Provincetown Theater was fortunate to receive pivotal funding from the SBA via a shuttered venues operators grant during the pandemic. In addition, support was provided by the David Schoolman Trust thanks to a legacy gift from David Schoolman as part of his desire to help the Foundation maintain its position as a leader in the arts community of Provincetown and beyond. The generosity of these grantmakers and others like the Palette Foundation and the Provincetown Tourism fund has allowed the Provincetown Theater Foundation to invest in staff and in the institution to achieve organizational sustainability to the benefit of the entire Cape Cod community.

Recent investments in solar energy reduced energy costs by nearly two-thirds. Still, the Theater needs infrastructure upgrades to the heating system and new windows, siding, and upgrades to the façade for it to thrive over the next decade and beyond. Furthermore, housing costs in Provincetown are some of the highest in the nation, and the Theater pays to house its actors, directors, and lighting designers for each performance. As those costs have skyrocketed over the past few years, the Theater is dependent on corporate and individual donors and sponsors to help cover those costs.

"The future looks incredibly bright for the Provincetown Theater, but we are realistic about the challenges we face. Our community is growing. As we continue to bring in incredible talent from Boston, New York, and beyond to create incredible Theater, we need the help of donors and sponsors now more than ever," says David Drake, artistic director.

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