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Berkeley Playhouse Announces 2019-2020 Professional Season

Berkeley Playhouse Announces 2019-2020 Professional Season

Berkeley Playhouse Founding Artistic Director Elizabeth McKoy and Executive Director and Producer Kimberly Dooley announced today that the 12th professional season of their award-winning theater company for all ages includes five brand-new productions that will stir the soul and ignite challenging conversations about the world we live in.

The 2019-2020 Season begins in September with Mamma Mia!, a feel-good celebration of love, friendship, and the meaning of family set to the timeless music of ABBA. The holiday season features a gift for audiences young and old alike with A Christmas Story, a hilarious musical based on the holiday classic. In February 2020, take in Memphis, a passionate story about interracial love set at the birth of rock 'n' roll in 1950's Tennessee. Berkeley Playhouse's April 2020 production is a soaring and electric show by one of America's most beloved theater creators, and has been on the wish list for years! It's still top secret but will be announced to the public on September 1st, 2019. Finally, the season closes with Newsies, the epic dance musical about young people fighting for justice.

"As we head into our 12th season here at Berkeley Playhouse, I continue to be amazed at how far we've come and in awe of the incredible community that has built up around us," says Founding Artistic Director Elizabeth McKoy. "What began as a small theater program for kids has blossomed into an award-winning theater company and artistic home for local designers, performing artists, young conservatory students, and, of course, our amazing patrons. In fact, this past year over 45,000 audience members saw Berkeley Playhouse shows and over 2,000 kids took part in our classes, camps, and YouthStage! I'm so thrilled to have the opportunity to continue to fulfill our mission of creating theater that engages, ignites, and celebrates our diverse community here in the Bay Area."

Executive Director and Producer Kimberly Dooley adds, "the productions we've selected this season all tell joyful and passionate stories about the family and communities that we care about, laugh with, and ultimately fight for. These stories span generations and destinations-from the stunning Greek Isles to blustery small-town Indiana, and from 1950s Tennessee to New York in the late 1800s-and we can't wait to dive into these incredible pieces of musical theater."

The organization also announced plans to continue its successful outreach programs, which create spaces for those who stand to benefit greatly from quality engagement with musical theater. The Student Matinee Seriessupports Berkeley Playhouse's goal of encouraging education and lifelong learning and offers a great opportunity to integrate the arts into students' curriculum. Performances are followed by an optional talk-back Q&A with the cast and are no doubt inspiring and rewarding for everyone attending.

Berkeley Playhouse will also continue with their Pay What You Can Programfor one performance of each production. On these special evenings, audiences may arrive at the theater one hour prior to performance time and pay whatever they can afford to attend that evening's performance.

Early Bird Season Passes will go on sale at a discounted price on April 15th, 2019. Berkeley Playhouse Season Pass holders will receive early access to ticket reservations and seat selection for all five productions during the exclusive Season Pass Holder Week from July 29th through August 4th, 2019. To learn more, visit www.berkeleyplayhouse.org.


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