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Northern Kentucky University's School of the Arts Announces Updated 2021-22 Season

Productions include Torch Song, Noises Off, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, The Lightning Thief, and more!

By: May. 21, 2021
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Northern Kentucky University's School of the Arts Announces Updated 2021-22 Season  Image

Northern Kentucky University University's School of the Arts has cancelled the 2021 Commonwealth Theatre Company's summer dinner season. SOTA is taking the proactive measure to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of the NKU campus and community members.

NKU continues to follow the CDC and Kentucky current health guidelines for facial coverings. SOTA is hopeful to start in-person productions for the 2021-2022 academic season, with events following all state guidelines that are subject to change. Additional information and ticketing procedures will be announced at a later date.

The previously announced production lineup has been adjusted. The rights for Mamma Mia are recalled due to a planned national tour in 2022 and is no longer part of the schedule. Floyd Collins has also been canceled.

The updated SOTA 2021-2022 academic season productions are:

Torch Song by Harvey Fierstein

Directed by Michael Hatton
Music Director: Damon Stevens
Sept. 29-Oct. 9

Torch Song is the two-act revival of Harvey Fierstein's Tony Award-winning Torch Song Trilogy. The life of Arnold Beckoff, a torch song-singing, Jewish drag queen living in New York City, is dramatized over the span of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Told with a friendly, human voice, Torch Song follows Arnold's odyssey to find happiness in New York. Along the way, Arnold experiences love, loss, and misadventure. A visit from his overbearing mother reminds him that he needs one thing more: respect.

Torch Song is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc., a Concord Theatricals Company.

Noises Off by Michael Frayn

Directed by Ken Jones
Oct. 14-24

Noises Off has been called "the funniest farce ever written" and takes a fond look at the follies of theatre folk, whose susceptibility to out-of-control egos, memory loss, and passionate affairs turn every performance into a high-risk adventure. This play-within-a-play captures a manic menagerie of itinerant actors rehearsing a flop called "Nothing's On." Doors slamming, falling trousers, on and offstage intrigue, and an errant herring all figure in the plot of this hilarious and classically comic play.

Noises Off is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc., a Concord Theatricals Company.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Directed by Jason Danieley
Musical Director: Jamey Strawn
Nov. 12-21

In the small town of Chesterham, England, the young and charming Edwin Drood has been mysteriously murdered. Based on Charles Dickens' final unfinished novel, Holmes' award-winning musical is an interactive whodunit mystery which invites the audience to enter the action. Staged as a show-within-a-show at the Music Hall Royale, this charming and inventive show is sure to intrigue any musical or mystery lover.

Multiple award-winning and critically acclaimed Broadway actor, singer, concert performer, and recording artist Jason Danieley has delighted audiences around the country and world with his incredible performances. In his New York directorial debut Broadway World called his talents as a director as 'remarkably impressive'. For a complete biography visit

The Mystery of Edwin Drood is presented by special arrangement with Concord Theatricals Company.

The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical

Directed by Jamey Strawn
Feb. 18-27, 2022

As a son of Poseidon, Percy has newly discovered powers he can't control and mythological monsters and Greek gods on his trail. Zeus's master lightning bolt has been stolen and Percy is the prime suspect. Now he and his friends must embark on an epic quest to find Zeus' missing lightning bolt and prevent a war among the gods. This dynamic musical adaptation of Rick Riordan's bestselling book is an action-packed, mythical adventure that will thrill everyone in the family.

YES Festival of New Plays - 20th Anniversary

March 31-April 10, 2022

The Year End Series (YES) Festival is NKU's new-play festival, the oldest collegiate new-play festival in the country. For the 20th Anniversary, the School of the Arts will host four world-premiere plays, including the first regional collaboration. The Carnegie and NKU SOTA will work together to produce a new play by Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati's Producing Artistic Director, D. Lynn Meyers. The Carnegie will debut this world premiere script as the closing show in its 2021 - 2022 theatre season and kick-off the 20th anniversary of the YES Festival.

New Year's Eve at the Stop-n-Go by Samantha Oty

Directed by Mike King

A group of friends confront their changing lives and each other at a convenience store on Dec. 31, 1999.

Playwright Samantha Oty graduated from Radford University with a degree in English, technical editing and writing. She received her master's degree in publishing from The George Washington University in 2017. Her first play, Demolition Lovers, was written in her sophomore year of high school and won the 2010 New Voices playwriting contest and has been writing plays ever since.

The Pig Farm by Richard Paul Klein

Directed by Daryl Harris

Two young Christian women find their faith in the Lord tested as they attempt to dispose of the evidence of a recent display of faith by feeding it to pigs housed on a rural farm. Caught in the act, these young women find the evening becomes progressively more complex, morbid, and dangerous as they encounter test after test.

Richard Klein's plays have been produced or performed in various theatres, rehearsal spaces, living rooms, kitchens, and back alleys across the United States. Klein has won the John Cauble Award, the University of Cincinnati Playwriting Prize, and the Carol & Elton Holman Screenwriting Competition.

YES Festival Show #3 (TBA) by Lexi Rigsby, BFA Playwriting '21

YES Festival Show #4 (TBA) by D. Lynn Meyers, Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati Artistic Director

Directed by Brian Robertson

Presented in partnership with the Carnegie Theatre of Covington.

Dance '22

April 29-May 1, 2022

Featuring a company of our best young dance artists, along with new and innovative works created by faculty, guest artists, and nationally renowned choreographers, Dance '22 has something for everyone - theatre dance, contemporary and classical ballet, tap, modern, jazz, and world dance.

Season Extras include an emerging choreographer showcase on Nov. 22 and a first year show from Dec. 10-12.

For the full lineup and additional information on SOTA's offerings, visit


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