Aaron Kitchin and Elyse Sharp in "Miss Bennet Christmas at Pemberley" at Capital Stage Company in Sacramento, Calif.

Marin Theatre Company Announces 6-Show Season for 2018-19

A new comedy by Jen Silverman, along with Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon’s new Austen holiday show, are the world premieres.

MILL VALLEY, CALIF.: Marin Theatre Company has announced its 2018-19 season, featuring six new plays, including two world premieres.

“This season is a diverse journey of brave stories of everyday people struggling to make the world a better place,” said MTC artistic director Jasson Minadakis in a statement. “From the unknown heroes of the Oslo Accords to the everyday men and women of 1920s Harlem to the story behind August Wilson’s Century Cycle, this season will lift your spirits and inspire your imagination.”

Added MTC managing director Keri Kellerman in a statement, “The brilliant poet and activist Audre Lord said ‘[I]t is not difference which immobilizes, but silence. And there are so many silences to be broken.’ We hope the playwrights and plays in our 2018-19 season begin to answer that call by lifting up urgent and necessary stories that help illuminate what it means to live in America today.”

The season kicks off with the Bay Area premiere of Oslo by J.T. Rogers (Sept. 27-Oct. 21). This Tony-winning play follows the clandestine, high-stakes efforts of two Norwegian academics to make peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

Next, for the holidays, is the world premiere of The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley (Nov. 15-Dec. 9), by MTC playwright-in-residence Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon, a companion piece to the duo’s Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley, itself a sequel to Pride and Prejudice.

Following is the Bay Area premiere of August Wilson’s How I Learned What I Learned (Jan. 10-Feb. 3, 2019). Co-conceived by Todd Kreidler, this solo show tells the story behind Wilson’s craft and career, and is here produced in partnership with African-American Shakespeare Company and Ubuntu Theater Project.

Next is the Bay Area premiere of The Who & The What by Ayad Akhtar (Feb. 28–March 24, 2019), a comedy about a Pakistani-American writer whose novel about women and Islam ruffles feathers with her conservative family and a young convert she meets.

The West Coast premiere of Nambi E. Kelley’s Jazz follows (April 25-May 19, 2019). Based on the book by Toni Morrison, and featuring music composed by Marcus Shelby, the play follows a middle-aged women set on revenge against her husband and his young lover in 1920s Harlem.

The season concludes with the world premiere of Wink by Jen Silverman (June 13–July 7, 2019), a dark comedy about an unhappy housewife, her breadwinning husband, their strange psychiatrist, and their anthropomorphic cat Wink.

Marin Theatre Company, founded in 1966, is a mid-sized theatre dedicated to producing new American plays.

  • AJ Muhammad

    Dear America Theatre Editors, is it possible to use a photo collage to highlight the diversity of the season as opposed to the play of the season that only showcases the “classical” piece that happens to not include any POC. This is the second time that I’ve shared news about an upcoming season announced by AT that will feature work of artists of color but the photo that runs with the article doesn’t truly reflect that diversity the way a collage could.

    • AJ, thanks for the comment. Picking a single production image to represent an announcement of plays that have yet to be staged is always a challenge. When Theatre X sends us their season announcement, we vary in our approach: Sometimes we pick an image from a previous production at another theatre of one of the plays in the coming season at Theatre X; other times we pick an image from a production in a previous season at Theatre X. Neither of those is really adequate, as we’re either depicting the “wrong” theatre or the “wrong” show. Our ideal choice is a photo from Theatre X of a play that’s closely related to or by the same author as one in their coming season, and in this case MISS BENNET was the obvious choice. (Other choices would have been running pictures of previous, non-Marin productions of OSLO, WHO AND THE WHAT, and HOW I LEARNED WHAT I LEARNED, or picking something from last season at Marin.) A collage is an interesting option, but what it would it show? The faces of the playwrights? We would be open to that idea, but we have so many season announcements to get through we don’t really have time to make a collage for each one. If theatres want to provide us with a collage as you suggest, that would be a great option we would definitely consider.

      • AJ Muhammad

        Hi AT, thanks for responding. I definitely understand the challenge of selecting images that are not ideal that far in advance and having so many season announcements to get through and ultimate share. I think the idea of the collage of the playwrights could be one possible solution among others. If you all aren’t able to design one, then It’s something that the theaters could put together quickly and send along with the press release.