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A.C.T.’s Next Chapter


In all the great stories, the turning of a page—the beginning of a new chapter—holds the most anticipation and reveals the biggest surprises. As story lovers, we revel in unexplored territories, new characters, and unexpected journeys.

Join us as A.C.T. embarks on its own next chapter under the leadership of new Artistic Director Pam MacKinnon.
 

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*Partial Subscription renewals now available! Current subscribers must renew by May 21 to keep their seats for the 2018–19 season.  


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The 2018–19 Season

 

 

by Lynn Nottage
Directed by Loretta Greco

September 26–October 21, 2018
A.C.T.’s Geary Theater


“Brilliant . . . authentic . . . grippingly human”

Deadline

Sweat offers a path toward healing for a nation riven by a torturous election.”
Los Angeles Times

“A bracingly topical portrait of American dreams deferred”
The New York Times


A.C.T. kicks off the 2018–19 season with the Pulitzer Prize–winning drama that had Broadway critics and audiences on their feet. In Reading, Pennsylvania—the blue-collar heart of America’s steel industry—a tight-knit group of factory workers has gathered in the local bar for generations to share laughs, hopes, and cold beers. But as recession looms and a union lock-out turns assembly line into picket line, lifelong friends find themselves pitted against each other in the struggle to survive. Inspired by the stories of Rust Belt workers, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage (Ruined) unites heart and humor to forge a searing drama of the grit, drive, and resilience of our conflicted American dreams.

 

 

by Jaclyn Backhaus
Directed by Tamilla Woodard

October 17–December 16, 2018
A.C.T.’s Strand Theater


Men on Boats is off-the-canyon-walls funny!”

Chicago Tribune

“A thrilling, gender-flipped slice of Manifest Destiny”
Time Out New York
 

Spinning historical, theatrical, and gender conventions on their heads, this subversive tale of 10 men, four boats, and two rivers contains none of the above.

Pack your gear for this 21st-century telling of 19th-century American explorer and one-armed Civil War veteran John Wesley Powell, who assembles a brawny band of soldiers, trappers, and adventurers to explore the waterways of the American West. Inspired by Powell’s actual travel log from 1869, Jaclyn Backhaus’s nimble and ingenious script is provocative, laugh-out-loud theater, performed by a diverse cast of female-identifying and gender-fluid actors who infuse America’s historic myths of male conquest with a sly blast of subtext.

With the speed and force of Powell’s white-water rapids, Backhaus conjures her epic story—in which simple materials are transformed into perilous canyons and death-defying cliffs—out of sheer imagination, shaping an innovative and innately theatrical play, that became an off-Broadway sensation.

 

 

Directed by Pam MacKinnon

January 23–February 17, 2019
A.C.T.’s Geary Theater
 

“Of all Mr. Albee’s plays, this is the most exquisitely written”
The New Yorker 


“Wry, charming and surprisingly hopeful

Los Angeles Times
 

In her A.C.T. debut, Artistic Director Designate Pam MacKinnon continues her career-long exploration of American theater’s legendary playwright, Pulitzer Prize winner Edward Albee (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?).

In this wildly imaginative and satirical comedy, a newly retired couple picnics on a beach and squabbles about their life together when they are interrupted by two human-sized, English-speaking lizards. Are the newcomers an evolutionary miracle, or a threat? And which couple is the greater risk to the other?

As the two pairs begin to communicate, they come uneasily together, discovering how transitions in life can spark terror and restlessness in any creature of habit. Albee returns to The Geary for the first time in a decade, with a sparkling fantasy of growing up and growing old, fear and adventure, love and laughter.

 

 

by Mfoniso Udofia
Directed by Victor Malana Maog

February 13–April 14, 2019
A.C.T.’s Strand Theater


“Powerful . . . moving . . . extraordinary”

The New York Times 

“Mfoniso Udofia is a first-generation Nigerian-American playwright with a lot on her mind and a seriously compelling storytelling gift.”
Deadline


From an extraordinary new voice in American theater comes this taut and achingly poignant drama exploring the multigenerational bonds of a Nigerian family living in the United States.

Traveling from Lagos to visit her mother and American-born sister for the first time in two decades, thirtysomething Iniabasi arrives to a snowy landscape, and even chillier truths inside a small Manhattan apartment. As Nigerian traditions clash with American realities, the family is forced to confront its literal and emotional baggage and its painful legacies across language, continents, and cultures.

Playwright Mfoniso Udofia, a graduate of A.C.T.’s M.F.A. Program, won acclaim in New York—now A.C.T. joins with Magic Theatre, to each present one, independent chapter from Udofia’s sweeping nine-part saga about a family of Nigerian immigrants and their American-born children. Pulsing with humor and heartache, this tender and hopeful window into an evolving family is “a reminder that most Americans share a common origin story” (The New York Times).

 

 

by Lauren Yee
Directed by Lisa Peterson

March 6–31, 2019
A.C.T.’s Geary Theater

“[This] imaginative vault over the decades . . . asserts a quiet, beautifully unexpected power”
Denver Post
 

When a college basketball team from San Francisco is invited to China for an exhibition game in 1989, a smack-talking American coach prepares to take on his protégé—now grown and bent on crushing the Westerners. But after a public high school star from Chinatown joins the American team, his actions in Beijing become the accidental focus of attention, escalating the fractured history between the coaches.

Funny, urgent, and contemporary, this slam dunk of a sports drama from award-winning Bay Area playwright Lauren Yee explores identity, global politics, and the collision of cultures and generations. Soaring through time and leaping across continents from the hardball courts of San Francisco’s Chinatown to a Beijing on the brink of revolution, The Great Leap builds tension right up to the buzzer.

 

 

by Kate Hamill
Based on the novel by William Makepeace Thackeray
Directed by Jessica Stone
A coproduction with Shakespeare Theatre Company

April 17–May 12, 2019
A.C.T.’s Geary Theater


“A gift to actors and a goody bag for its audience”

The New York Times

“A masterpiece of creative compression that is at once arrestingly original and faithful to its source material”
The Wall Street Journal
 

From acclaimed playwright Kate Hamill (2017 Playwright of the Year, Wall Street Journal) comes a rollicking new stage adaptation of William Thackeray’s classic 19th-century novel that pops with 21st-century spirit.

Ambitious Becky Sharp may not have been born with wealth or status, but she’s determined to attain both—at any cost. Armed with fierce wit and calculating charm, Becky forges her own path through London’s high society, dealing herself into a game she was never invited to play.

Displaying the celebrated audacity and verve that she brought to her adaptation of Sense & Sensibility, Hamill conjures an inventive and lively period drama featuring one of literature’s original “nasty women.

 

 

. . . and one more exciting production to be announced soon!

 

 

 

All dates, titles, and artists are subject to change.

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