Coe College offers variety in 2010-2011 theatre season

Extra: Rod Pritchard, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
(319) 399-8605 or

2010-07-27 13:12:26 - General

The Coe College Department of Theatre Arts has announced its 2010-2011 season of four main stage productions, directed by faculty members and featuring both students and faculty in the casts. This season's offerings range from a world premiere about German women of the Third Reich, to a classic Chekhov drama focused on the decay of the privileged class in early 20th-century Russia, to a thought-provoking play in which two famous atomic physicists find themselves on opposite sides of World War II, to a morality tale centered on the riots in Los Angeles in the wake of the Rodney King beating.

In addition, playgoers can enjoy dinner at Clark Alumni House prior to select performances, complete with a pre-performance talk given by the directors. An "early bird" discount will be given to those who book theatre and/or dinner-theatre tickets during July and August.

Coe theatre patrons can purchase individual play tickets now for $8, $6 for seniors and students. After Sept. 1, tickets will be $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.

The dinner-theatre option will be offered on Dec. 3 ("Three Sisters"), Jan. 28 and 29 ("Copenhagen"), and April 15 ("Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992"). Dinner prices are $15 if booked now, and $20 if booked after Sept. 1. For ticket information, call 399-8600, Monday - Friday, between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. (summer hours).

All productions are being presented in the Dows Theatre on the Coe campus. Performances begin at 8 p.m., except for Sunday performances, which start at 2 p.m. This year's productions include:

"Women in the Shadow" - Oct. 1, 2, 3, 7, 8 and 9 written and directed by guest director Saffron Henke, and presented with generous support from the Julie Ritter Streib Fund.

This new play explores the lives and stories of women in the time of the Third Reich. Predominantly a movement piece, "Women in the Shadow" utilizes music, video, poetry and improvisation based on historical fact to bring to life the personal struggles and public personae of a few of the women intimately connected with men who were key figures in the rise and fall of Nazi Germany.

"Three Sisters" - Dec. 3, 4, 5, 9, 10 and 11, written by Anton Chekhov and directed by Steve Marc Weiss, Coe College associate professor of theatre arts.

"Three Sisters" is a bittersweet, serio-comic family drama set against the decay of the privileged class in Russia at the turn of the 20th century. The Prozorovs - sisters Olga, Masha, Irina, and their brother Andre - who spent their refined and cultured youth in Moscow, have been living for more than a decade in a small, colorless provincial town where their now-deceased father, a military general, had been transferred. Over time, their shared dream of returning to the more urbane life in the capital erodes, as the ordinariness of daily living gradually tightens its grip on them.

"Copenhagen" - Jan. 27, 28, 29 and 30, written by Michael Frayn, directed by Coe College Associate Professor of Theatre Arts Steven Marc Weiss, with a cast featuring Coe Associate Professor of Theatre Arts Dennis Barnett, Coe Physics Professor Steve Feller, and his wife, Barbara Feller.

In this Tony Award-winning play, Frayn investigates a meeting that took place in 1941 between two Nobel laureates, the physicists Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg - friends who found themselves on opposite sides of World War II. "Copenhagen" offers a clever "dramatic" demonstration of Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle as it might be applied to human intentions, calling all presumed convictions into question.

Successfully bringing together the disciplines of physics and theatre, "Copenhagen" has received several honors, including a Tony Award, New York Drama Critics' Circle Award, the London Evening Standard Award for best play, a Critic's Circle Theatre Award, and the Evening Standard Award.

"Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992" - April 8, 9, 10, 14, 15 and 16, written by Anna Deavere Smith, directed by Dennis Barnett, associate professor of theatre arts.

A contemporary morality tale that unflinchingly takes on the complexities and the resultant tensions of our diverse world, "Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992" is based on a collection of interviews with participants and bystanders during the riots that raged in Los Angeles following the Rodney King beating. This is a multimedia and movement-oriented piece with an ensemble of actors, filled with provocative images and evocative music.

"Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992" has received numerous awards and honors including two Tony nominations, an Obie Award, a Drama Desk Award and two NAACP Theatre Awards.

For more information, call 399-8600 or visit