Virginia Stage Company and Norfolk State University Theatre's THE WIZ Breaks Records with Sold Out Performances

Virginia Stage Company and Norfolk State University Theatre Company's production of The Wiz concluded April 30 after rave reviews, smashing attendance records and selling out five performances - something not seen at the Wells Theatre is many years. By pooling the resources, talents, and staffs of the two organizations, the production was elevated to a height otherwise unachievable.

Both organizations launch their 2017-18 seasons in September. Memberships are available for Virginia Stage now at vastage.org/season39. See below for the full slate of Virginia Stage productions, including Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash, Pride and Prejudice, and the return of the hit gospel musical Crowns.

This month at the Wells Theatre, Virginia Stage and the Virginia Arts Festival are co-presenting one of the most sought-after pianists performing today, Olga Kern, on May 24, followed by the witty, goofy, fun for all ages no-holds-Bard show, Reduced Shakespeare Company's William Shakespeare's Long Lost First Play (Abridged), from May 26 to 28. Tickets available for both productions at vafest.org.

Virginia Stage Company is southeastern Virginia's leading theatre destination, serving an audience of over 70,000 annually both at the Wells Theatre and throughout the community.

NSU Theatre Company is the critically-acclaimed, nationally recognized, multiple award-winning theatre company of Norfolk State University in Norfolk, VA.

Virginia Arts Festival has, since 1997, transformed the cultural scene in southeastern Virginia, presenting great performers from around the world to local audiences and making this historic, recreation-rich region a cultural destination for visitors from across the United States and around the world.

RING OF FIRE: THE MUSIC OF Johnny Cash

CREATED BY Richard Maltby, Jr. AND CONCEIVED BY William Meade

September 13 to October 1, 2017

Explore love, family, and heartache through the tumultuous biography of Johnny Cash. This energetic and exhilarating musical rocks more than two dozen of Cash's iconic hits.

THE PARCHMAN HOUR: SONG AND STORIES OF THE '61 FREEDOM RIDERS

BY MIKE WILEY

October 25 to November 12, 2017

Journey through the Deep South with the pioneers who fought discrimination and paved the way for the future. Adapted from real life accounts of the 1961 Freedom Rides, this play shares these struggles through music that ranges from Bob Dylan to spirituals.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL

BY Charles Dickens, ADAPTED BY PATRICK MULLINS

December 6 to December, 24 2017

It wouldn't be the holidays without Dickens' A Christmas Carol at the Wells Theatre. Experience the childlike wonder of this heartwarming story that follows the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future as they take Ebenezer Scrooge on a journey of redemption where he learns the power of kindness and compassion..

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE

BY JANE AUSTIN

ADAPTED BY Joseph Hanreddy AND J.R. Sullivan

January 17 to February 4, 2018

This stage adaptation of Jane Austen's most beloved novel will sweep you away with its witty, fast-paced exploration of expectations that has become the template for modern romance. Sparks fly when the charming, vibrant Elizabeth clashes with the aloof, enigmatic Mr. Darcy.

THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES

ADAPTED FROM SIR Arthur Conan Doyle'S NOVEL BY STEVEN CANNY AND John Nicholson

February 21 to March 11, 2018

3 actors play more than 20 characters in this hilarious spoof of beastly proportions. A fast-paced comedic ride, filled with verbal and visual ingenuity, follows the dynamic pair of Watson & Holmes as they debunk a family 'curse'. "A sublimely funny adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle's classic!"

DIGRACED

BY Ayad Akhtar

April 4 to April 22, 2018

This Pulitzer Prize-winning play sits you at the table for delectable drama where secrets are exposed and prejudices unearthed. At a dinner party hosted by a Pakistani-American lapsed Muslim and his Caucasian wife and attended by his African-American law partner and her Jewish husband, tensions rise when the conversation turns to religion, the economy, and Islamophobia; what could go wrong?

CROWNS

BY ReGina Taylor, ADAPTED FROM THE BOOK BY Michael Cunningham AND Craig Marberry

May 9 to May 27, 2018

One of the most Popular Productions in Virginia Stage's history returns! In this gospel musical, 17-year-old Yolanda travels south in a coming of age story that is a testament to love, sisterhood, and family, where she learns that a hat can be more than a fashion statement. Multi-generations of women tell stories of life's most memorable moments with their hats serving as allegories about the wonders of life - all with a flair of "hattitude."

More information at: vastage.org/season39



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