SEMINAR, LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST & More Set for UMKC Theatre's 2013-14 Season

Known for high-quality productions and successful collaboration with Kansas City theatre companies, UMKC Theatre announces its 2013-2014 season.

"We continue our push to produce exciting master works and not-to-be-missed plays that are new to Kansas City," said Tom Mardikes, Chair of UMKC Theatre. "We are proud to be able to offer our first August Wilson play featuring an entirely African-American cast. We continue our tradition of partnering with local professional theatres including KC Rep, the Unicorn, Kansas City Actors Theatre and the Coterie with five co-productions. For more than 30 years, UMKC Theatre has produced innovative and high-quality theatre for KC audiences and this year promises to excel in that tradition."

The graduate season opens in October with Seven Guitars by August Wilson, ...the first-ever production of an August Wilson play for UMKC Theatre, and Big Love by Charles S. Mee, a first-ever UMKC Theatre performance at the Copaken stage. The season continues with a co-production at the Unicorn Theatre: Seminar by Theresa Rebeck, directed by Theodore Swetz. The undergraduate season opens in November with Chekhov shorts directed by Heidi Van at the Fishtank and continues with The Three Sisters by Anton Chekhov directed by Michael Pauley. Four additional co-productions with Equity theatres are scheduled, and the season ends with William Shakespeare's Love's Labour's Lost directed by Ed Stern and performed at the UMKC's Spencer Theatre in May.

Single ticket adult prices remain $15 for any performance. All UMKC faculty and staff tickets are now $10 and UMKC students tickets are now $6 for any performance. Senior and non-UMKC student prices are still only $10.

Monday nights are traditionally "dark" as that is the actors' day off. However, UMKC Theatre will again provide an Industry Night for each production so that theatre professionals and others will have one opportunity to see UMKC Theatre performances on a Monday. Admission to all Monday night shows (on campus or at Copaken Stage) is only $10 per person and, good news, is open to the general public.

Graduate Productions

"Seven Guitars"
By August Wilson and directed by Scott Stackhouse. Seven Guitars is Wilson's fifth play written to document the 20th-century African American experience. It is set in Pittsburgh in 1948. "The seven guitars of the title are the seven characters whose straightforward story lines Wilson turns into beautiful, complex music-a funky wailing, irresistible Chicago blues."-The New Yorker. The production will preview Sept. 27 - Oct. 1; open formally Oct. 2 and run through Oct. 6 at Studio 116, Olson PAC.

"Big Love"
By Charles S. Mee and directed by Megan Sandberg-Zakian. "Fifty brides flee their fifty grooms and seek refuge in a villa on the coast of Italy in this modern re-making of one of the western world's oldest plays, The Danaids by Aeschylus. And, in this villa on the Italian coast, the fifty grooms catch up with the brides, and mayhem ensues: the grooms arriving by helicopter in their flight suits, women throwing themselves over and over again to the ground, pop songs and romantic dances, and, finally, unable to escape their forced marriages, 49 of the brides murder 49 of the grooms---and one bride falls in love. About the same odds as today."---Charles Mee website. The production previews Oct. 18 - Oct. 22 and runs Oct. 23 through Oct. 27 at the Copaken Theatre, 1 H&R Block Way, in Power & Light District.

"Almost, Maine"
By John Cariani and directed by John Rensenhouse. "Welcome to Almost, Maine, a town that's so far north, it's almost not in the United States-it's almost in Canada. And it almost doesn't exist. Because its residents never got around to getting organized. So it's just...Almost. One cold, clear Friday night in the middle of winter, while the northern lights hover in the sky above, Almost's residents find themselves falling in and out of love in the strangest ways. Knees are bruised. Hearts are broken. Love is lost, found, and confounded. And life for the people of Almost, Maine will never be the same. It's love. But not quite."---Almost, Maine website. The show previews Nov. 29 - Dec. 3 and runs Dec. 4 - 8 at Studio 116, Olson PAC.

"Contemporary One Acts"
Theodore Swetz will serve as lead director with guest directors and short play selection TBD. This production will preview April 23 - 24 and runs April 25 through 28 at Studio 116, Olson PAC.

"Love's Labour's Lost"
By William Shakespeare and directed by Ed Stern. ---The play begins with the King of Navarre and his three noble companions taking an oath to devote themselves to three years of study, promising not to give in to the company of women----then the girls arrive and they all fall comically in love. Love's Labour's Lost abounds in sophisticated wordplay, puns, and literary allusions and is filled with clever pastiches of contemporary poetic forms.---Wikipedia. The show previews May 2 - 6 and runs May 7 - 11 at the Helen F. Spencer Theatre, Olson PAC.

Undergraduate Productions

"The Three Sisters"
By Anton Chekhov and directed by Michael R. Pauley. ---Father is long dead but the three Prozorov sisters are still stuck in a provincial backwater, longing for the better life they believe Moscow offers. --- Previews begin Oct. 11 - 15 and runs Oct. 16 through 20 at Grant Hall Theatre, UMKC Campus.

"The Playboy of the Western World"
By J. M. Synge and directed by Tom Mardikes. ---Christy Mahon stumbles into Flaherty's pub on the run from having killed his father with a shovel. Instead of being aghast by this patricide, the novelty of his story and the way he tells it turns him into the town hero. The ladies are trying to seduce him and the gents want to be his pal. Then things begin to spin out of his control.---Previews begin March 14 - 18 and runs March 19 through 23 at the Genessee Stage, 4501 Genessee Street, Kansas City, MO.


Co-produced with Unicorn Theatre.

Written by Theresa Rebeck and directed by Theodore Swetz. Oct. 16 - Nov. 10 at Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main Street, KC MO. (816) 531-7529.

"Chekhov Shorts"
Directed by Heidi Van, this production will feature short comic pieces from the vaudevilles or short stories of Anton Chekhov. The show runs Oct. 31 - Nov. 3 at the Fishtank Performance Studio, Crossroads Arts District, 1715 Wyandotte Street. For tickets call (816) 809-7110 or online at

"Clybourne Park"
Co-produced by Unicorn Theatre

Written by Bruce Norris and directed by Joe Price. Dec. 4 - 29 at Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main Street, KC MO. (816) 531-7529.

"Romeo & Juliet"
In partnership with Kansas City Repertory Theatre

By William Shakespeare and directed by Eric Rosen. The production runs Jan. 17 -Feb. 9, 2014 at Spencer Theatre, Olson PAC. For tickets call 816-235-2700 or online at

"Afflicted: Daughters of Salem"
Co-produced with Coterie Theatre

A world premiere by Laurie Brooks. Directed by Jeff Church. The production runs from Jan. 28 - Feb. 23, 2014 at the Coterie Theatre in Crown Center, 2450 Grand Blvd., KC, MO. For tickets call (816) 474-6552 or online at

"Journey's End"
Co-produced with Kansas City Actor's Theatre

Written by R. C. Sherriff. Directed by Mark Robbins. From Feb. 14 - March 2 at the National World War I Museum, Liberty Memorial, 100 W. 26thStreet. Call the Central Ticket Office at (816) 235-6222 or purchase online

"Samuel Beckett Intensive"
Directed by Heidi Van, this production will feature short theatre pieces by Samuel Beckett. The show runs Feb. 20 - 23 at the Fishtank Performance Studio, Crossroads Arts District, 1715 Wyandotte Street. For tickets call (816) 809-7110 or online at

UMKC THEATRE Ticket Information

Single ticket price* for UMKC campus shows are: Adult: $15 each, Senior/Metro Student: $10, Groups of 10+: $8, Industry Night (Mondays only): $10.

UMKC ticket prices (one ticket with valid ID): UMKC Faculty and Staff: $10, UMKC Student: $6 ($4 per order service fees apply.(

For tickets, call the Central Ticket Office at (816) 235-6222 or to purchase online, Click Here.

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