Jessica Frances Dukes in "Detroit '67" by Dominique Morisseau at Center Stage.

Hartford Stage Announces 55th Season

The lineup features world premieres by Bess Wohl and Samuel Baum, plus a new musical.

HARTFORD, CONN.: Hartford Stage has announced its 2018-2019 season, which features five productions in addition to the theatre’s annual staging of A Christmas Carol (Nov. 23–Dec. 29). The theatre’s 55th season will be its last under the leadership of artistic director Darko Tresnjak.

“From humorous to heartbreaking, from personal to political, from gritty to glitzy, the only thing that these productions have in common is that they pulse with the energy that is purely and positively theatrical,” said Tresnjak in a statement.

The season begins with the world premiere of Make Believe by Bess Wohl (Sept. 6–30), which follows four young siblings growing up in the 1980s whose childhoods are impacted by the mysterious problems of the adults in their lives. The play was commissioned by Hartford Stage through a grant from the Toulmin Foundation, which supports new theatrical works by women. Jackson Gay will direct.

Next will be Shakespeare’s Henry V (Oct. 11–Nov. 4), a classic history play about war and monarchy, directed by Hartford Stage’s associate artistic director Elizabeth Williamson.

Following is the world premiere of Samuel Baum’s The Engagement Party (Jan. 10–Feb. 3, 2019), which centers on a couple’s intimate engagement party and a spilled glass of wine which changes their lives forever. Artistic director Tresnjak will direct.

Next onstage is Dominique Morisseau’s Detroit ’67 (Feb. 14–March 10, 2019), a co-production with McCarter Theatre Center. The play details the clash of two siblings amid the Detroit race riots after a mysterious woman enters their lives. Jade King Carroll will direct.

The season will close with the world premiere of the musical The Flamingo Kid (May 9–June 2, 2019), book and lyrics by Robert L. Freedman, music by Scott Frankel. Tresnjak will direct the musical, which is based on the 1984 Garry Marshall film about a blue-collar Brooklyn teenager’s summer job at a Long Island cabana.

Founded in 1963, Hartford Stage produces revivals of classics and provocative new plays and musicals.