BERKELEY, CALIF.: Berkeley Repertory Theatre has announced its 2019-20 season, incoming artistic director Johanna Pfaelzer’s first.
“I am thrilled to bring this eclectic group of artists to the Bay Area for my first season at Berkeley Rep,” said Pfaelzer in a statement. “In putting together this season, it is important to me that the works have the sweeping theatricality and wide range of voices that Berkeley Rep is known for. I want to include artists who think of our theatre as their creative home, as well as to introduce new storytellers to our audience. These four shows (with more to come very soon!) bring together artists whose voices will be fantastic discoveries for Bay Area theatregoers, like the brilliant and hilarious Jocelyn Bioh, and Francis Turnly, whose work will be seen in the U.S. for the first time with The Great Wave, alongside renowned artists including John Logan, Michael Mayer, the Avett Brothers, and the mad genius of Culture Clash. I can’t wait to begin the conversations with our audience that these artists and their work will launch.”
The season will open with Francis Turnly’s The Great Wave (fall 2019), a thriller about teenage sisters Hanako and Reiko, who run onto the beach during a storm on a dare. One is swept out to sea, and the surviving sister recalls seeing three mysterious men on the shoreline.
Next up will be Culture Clash (Still) in America! (spring 2020), written and performed by Culture Clash members Richard Montoya, Ricardo Salinas, and Herbert Siguenza. The Chicano satire explores current politics with thought-provoking comedy about the immigrant experience in America. Lisa Peterson will direct.
Following will be Jocelyn Bioh’s School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play (spring 2020), about a new a new student who disrupts the social hierarchy at an exclusive boarding school in Ghana.
The season will close with the world premiere of Swept Away (summer 2020), with book by John Logan, music and lyrics by the Avett Brothers, and music arrangements and orchestrations by Chris Miller and Brian Usifer. The musical is inspired by the band’s 2004 album and their body of music. Michael Mayer will direct.
Berkeley Repertory Theatre, established in 1968, has as its mission to present innovative new plays.
Support American Theatre: a just and thriving theatre ecology begins with information for all. Please join us in this mission by making a donation to our publisher, Theatre Communications Group. When you support American Theatre magazine and TCG, you support a long legacy of quality nonprofit arts journalism. Click here to make your fully tax-deductible donation today!