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Krystina Alabado and Daphne Rubin-Vega in La Jolla Playhouse’s world-premiere musical "Miss You Like Hell" with book and lyrics by Quiara Alegría Hudes, music and lyrics by Erin McKeown, directed by Lear deBessonet, choreographed by Danny Mefford. (Photo by Jim Carmody)

Stephanie Ybarra Sets First Season at Baltimore Center Stage

Her first season at the Baltimore theatre will include ‘Miss You Like Hell,’ ‘Men on Boats,’ and a play directed by Taye Diggs.

BALTIMORE, MD.: Baltimore Center Stage has announced its 2019-20 season, the first programmed by new artistic director Stephanie Ybarra. The season will also include a slate of civic engagement activities to coincide with each production.

“In curating my first season at Baltimore Center Stage, I sought out joyfully subversive pieces told by a constellation of artists with an unapologetically theatrical style,” said Ybarra. “These stories and the people who tell them represent my hope that theatre can create the space for every one of us to conjure a world of our own imagining.”

The season will open with Miss You Like Hell, a musical by Quiara Alegría Hudes and Erin McKeown (Sep. 12-Oct. 13), about a mother-daughter duo who take a road trip, with the mother being an undocumented immigrant. Rebecca Martínez will direct. The musical will also launch a partnership between Center Stage and Olney Theatre Center (also in Maryland). Both theatres will separately produce the musical and collaborate on events that will encourage community discussion around immigration issues.

Next will be Thoughts of a Colored Man by Keenan Scott II, and directed by Taye Diggs (Oct. 10-Nov. 10). The play will blend language, music, and dance to explore being Black in the 21st century. It will be co-produced with Syracuse Stage in New York and in association with Brian Moreland and Ron Simons. Throughout the run Center Stage will host community conversations centered on cultural identity and personal storytelling.

Next is Men on Boats by Jaclyn Backhaus (Nov. 29-Dec. 22), about John Powell and his expedition to map the Colorado River. Jenny Koons will direct.

The next year kicks off with Richard & Jane & Dick & Sally by Noah Diaz (Jan. 23-Feb. 16, 2020). The play is a riff on the classic Dick and Jane books, which were used to teach children to read.

Next will be Where We Stand by Donnetta Lavinia Grays (March 19-April 12, 2020). The play, billed as a fable that asks the question, What do we owe to each other?, will tour April 14-26 throughout Greater Baltimore in time for the anniversary of Freddie Gray’s death.

The season will close with a new interpretation of Euripides’s The Bacchae (April 30-May 24, 2020). Mike Donahue will direct.

Baltimore Center Stage is the designated state theatre of Maryland.

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