PASADENA, CALIF.: A Noise Within has announced its 2020-21 season with the theme Spirits Rising. The season announcement was originally broadcast as part of a Facebook Live event.
“Through the ages and from the ashes of troubled times, the human spirit, indomitable and eternal, rises,” said producing artistic directors Geoff Elliott and Julia Rodriguez-Elliott in a joint statement. “Yes, we have all been united by particularly strange and trying days of late. And across the globe, along with inevitable chaos and conflict, our better angels are on shining display. Kindness, empathy, a helping hand to a stranger; these are the human qualities A Noise Within chooses to celebrate in our season.”
The season will open with Alice in Wonderland (Aug. 22-Sept. 13), by Eva Le Gallienne and Florida Friebus and adapted from Lewis Carroll, which was cut short during its spring 2020 run due to the coronavirus pandemic. Stephanie Shroyer will direct.
Next up will be Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (Sept. 27-Nov. 15), with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by Hugh Wheeler from an adaptation by Christopher Bond. Rodriguez-Elliott will direct this musical about a murderous barber with a taste for revenge.
Following will be August Wilson’s Radio Golf (Oct. 18-Nov. 22). A continuation of A Noise Within’s exploration of Wilson’s Century Cycle, Gregg T. Daniel will direct this play about an African American mayoral candidate confronting ambition and tradition as heritage clashes with dreams of a better life.
The Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol (Dec. 4-23), adapted by Geoff Elliott, will arrive for the holidays. Elliott and Rodriguez-Elliott will direct.
The season will continue with Metamorphoses (Feb. 7-May 7, 2021), by Mary Zimmerman and based on the Myths of Ovid. Rodriguez-Elliott will direct Zimmerman’s meditation on the joys and perils of being human through the stories of Midas, Orpheus, Aphrodite, and more.
An Iliad (Feb. 28-May 9, 2021), by Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare and based on Homer’s The Iliad translated by Robert Fagles, will open next. Rodriguez-Elliott will direct this tale of an eternal being grappling with the dualities of victory and loss, power and fragility, and heroism and hubris.
Closing out the season will be Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (April 4-May 16, 2021). This tale of mistaken identities, magic, and mayhem will take place in a submerged swampland, sharing a pool being used as part of Metamorphoses.
A Noise Within, founded in 1991, features a resident company using a rotating repertory model and producing classic plays.