The Umbrella Stage Company returns in its 2021/2022 season with six fresh,
varied productions, including an original world premiere, staged in-person in its two recently constructed theaters at 40 Stow Street.
Halted by COVID-19 midway through its inaugural season as a professional company, the award-winning team led by Producing Artistic Director Brian Boruta has taken time this year to construct a thoughtful, balanced season to ease stage-starved audiences back into a theater experience for a tentative time.
Planning for limited capacity seating and Covid safety protocols, the season begins with an intimate staging of Audrey Cefaly’s romantic comedy, The Last Wide Open (Sep 24-Oct 10), and builds modestly from there – forgoing the large casts of originally planned musical spectacles such as War Paint in favor of smaller, diverse and lesser known productions.
The lineup also includes: the music-rich and imaginative sea-faring epic The Old Man and The Old Moon; an updated, relevant new presentation of the satirical The Colored Museum; and the joyous musical comedy Head Over Heels, from the visionaries behind Hedwig and the Angry Inch and Avenue Q, fueled by music from the Go-Gos. Balancing out the season is an expanded
family friendly concert, Holidays Under The Umbrella, and an original play commission created by Hortense Gerardo and directed by Michelle Aguillon, who have partnered with The Umbrella on multiple pandemic projects.
NEW APPROACHES FOR A DIFFERENT KIND OF SEASON
With one exception, productions will be in The Umbrella’s new 344-seat proscenium-style mainstage at roughly half capacity to allow for optimal audience distancing from the cast and each other. The Umbrella joins a cohort of peer theaters in implementing heightened cleaning, mask mandates, fully vaccinated workplaces, and required proof of full vaccination or negative Covid test for adult attendees to protect community members.
Boruta cast the widest possible net to engage a diverse panel of Umbrella community members – performers, directors, designers, as well as board and staff members of all ages and backgrounds – to review, discuss and consult on selections that would feel meaningful, accessible and exciting to all its constituents just easing out of the pandemic.
THE LAST WIDE OPEN – Sep. 24 – Oct. 10, 2021
Play by Audrey Cefaly, Music by Matthew M. Nielson , Directed by Nancy Curran Willis
Fate plays its hand in this romantic comedy that features original songs and live music. Lina, a young waitress, and Roberto, an Italian immigrant, have been working together for years but rarely talk. If they
do, it’s from a distance or gets lost in translation. But when a late- finds them alone in the restaurant at closing time, they find their lives intersecting in surprising and mystical ways. Over wine and conversation, they test the waters of happiness and intimacy. A love song in three movements, The Last Wide Open imagines how the universe conspires to bring us together.
THE OLD MAN AND THE OLD MOON – Nov. 12 – Dec. 5, 2021
Play by PigPen Theater, Directed by Julia Deter
The Old Man has kept his post as the sole caretaker of the moon for as long as he (or his wife, the Old Woman) can remember. When she is drawn away by a mysterious melody sparking memories of their shared past, the Old Man must decide between duty (and routine) and love (and adventure). Luckily for audiences everywhere, he chooses the latter, and what follows is an imaginative sea-faring epic, encompassing apocalyptic storms, civil wars, leviathans of the deep, and cantankerous ghosts, as well as the fiercest obstacle of all: change.
HOLIDAYS UNDER THE UMBRELLA – Dec. 17 – 19, 2021
Directed by Sarajane Morse Mullins
The Umbrella’s beloved holiday concert returns the mainstage after last season’s virtual presentation. Familiar faces and Umbrella Stage favorites will return to sing seasonal songs and share their own holiday memories in a family friendly concert to put everyone in the spirit of the season!
THE COLORED MUSEUM – Jan. 28 – Feb. 20, 2022
By George C. Wolfe, Directed by Pascale Florestal
Serving as an elaborate satire of the prominent themes and identities of African American culture, the play is set in a fictional museum where iconic African American figures are kept for public consumption.
Told in a series of eleven sketches, each segment centers on a different “exhibit” in the museum, and serves as a small one-person play or monologue. Exploring themes of racism, stereotypes, intracommunity conflicts in black culture, and the ongoing legacy of slavery and segregation, The Colored Museum received overwhelming critical praise for its provocative subject matter and in-depth
exploration of the African American theatrical and cultural past.
A WORLD PREMIERE – Mar. 18 – Apr. 10, 2022
By Hortense Gerardo, Commissioned by The Umbrella, Directed by Michelle Aguillon
Local playwright Hortense Gerardo (Incantation) will create a brand new play specifically for The Umbrella Stage Company season. Stay tuned throughout the year for more information, sneak peeks, and special events leading up to this world premiere event
HEAD OVER HEELS – May 13 – Jun. 6, 2022
Adapted by James Magruder, Concept and Original Book by James Whitty, Music by The Go-Go’s,
Directed by Brian Boruta
Head Over Heels is the bold new musical comedy from the visionaries that rocked Broadway with Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Avenue Q and Spring Awakening. This laugh-out-loud love story is set to the
music of the iconic 1980’s all-female rock band The Go-Go’s, including the hit songs, “We Got the Beat,” “Our Lips Are Sealed,” “Vacation,” Belinda Carlisle’s “Heaven is a Place on Earth” and “Mad About You.”
A hilarious, exuberant celebration of love, it follows the escapades of a royal family on an outrageous journey to save their beloved kingdom from extinction—only to discover the key to their realm’s within each of their own hearts.
40 STOW STREET, CONCORD MA 01742