Posted 12:07 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24, 2021

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UWL Theatre Department announces 2021-22 theatre season

After a long hiatus due to COVID-19, the UW-La Crosse Department of Theatre Arts has announced live, in-person performances for its 2021-22 season.  

Opening the season is an original documentary drama, “Severe Clear: September 11 from Memory to History,” written by students and faculty in the UWL Department of Theatre Arts. The play highlights personal stories and sensory experiences of a collection of witnesses, survivors, and rescue personnel in New York, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., at the Pentagon, and aboard Air Force One.Severe Clear” draws on hundreds of interviews and testimonials, as well as reports, news footage, and air traffic control transcripts and audio files. Show dates: Oct. 16-17 and 21-24. 

Next up is playwright John Cariani’s “Love/Sick,” a collection of nine whimsical and slightly twisted vignettes on love, marriage and grocery-store serendipity. Set on a Friday night in an alternative suburban reality, this romp explores the pain and the joy that comes with being in love. Full of imperfect lovers and dreamers, “Love/Sick” is an unromantic comedy for the romantic in everyone. Show dates: Nov. 5-7.  

The Revolutionists” by Lauren Gunderson highlights four beautiful, badass women who lose their heads in this irreverent, girl-powered comedy set during the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror. Playwright Olympe de Gouges, assassin Charlotte Corday, former queen (and fan of ribbons) Marie Antoinette, and Haitian rebel Marianne Angelle hang out, murder Marat, and try to beat back the extremist insanity in 1793 Paris. The comedy is about violence and legacy, art and activism, feminism and terrorism, compatriots and chosen sisters, and how to go about changing the world. Show dates: Dec. 3-5 and 8-12. 

Spring 2022 will start off with the family-friendly tale of “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane” by Dwayne Hartford, based on the book by Kate DiCamillo. Edward Tulane is an expensive toy rabbit made of china. He is loved by a little girl named Abilene, but Tulane doesn’t care. He is vain and self-centered. He has no interest in anyone other than himself. On an ocean voyage, Tulane is accidently thrown overboard and sinks to the bottom of the sea. So begins his journey—a journey over which he has no control. He can neither move nor speak. As years pass by, Tulane meets many different people in many different situations: an older grieving couple who find comfort in Tulane’s presence, a hobo and his dog who introduce Tulane to a whole community of homeless wanderers, a farmer in need of a scarecrow, a sad little boy and his very ill sister, and finally a doll mender and an old doll who teach Tulane an invaluable lesson. Through this miraculous journey, Tulane learns what it is to love, what it is to lose that love, and how to find the courage to love again. Show dates: Feb. 25-27 and March 3-6. 

The Bus Stop” by Gao Xingjian tells the story of eight characters, each representing different elements of Chinese society: Old Man, Mother, Young Women, Carpenter, Manager Ma, Man Wearing Glasses, Brash Young Man, and Silent Man. Each has hopes for the future, which can only be realized by moving forward into the city. However, their means of transport, a public bus, repeatedly passes by without stopping. Failing to take initiative, the characters remain at the bus stop, passing the time by complaining about the ills of society and their own lack of accomplishment, becoming more desperate and disillusioned. Show dates: March 25-27. 

The delightful musical “She Loves Me” by Joe Masteroff, Sheldon Harnick and Jerry Bock, has been nominated for five Tony Awards. It’s a scented case of mistaken identity and letter-writing in which two feuding perfume clerks have no idea that they are in love. Set in a 1930s European perfumery, we meet shop clerks, Amalia and Georg, who, more often than not, don’t see eye to eye. After both respond to a “lonely hearts advertisement” in the newspaper, they now live for the love letters that they exchange, but the identity of their admirers remains unknown. Join Amalia and Georg to discover the identity of their true loves... and all the twists and turns along the way. Show dates: April 22-24 and April 28-May 1. 

Individual show tickets go on sale online Friday, Oct. 1, at In-person and phone sale dates for each production can be found on the UWL Theatre’s webpage. 

 COVID statement:  The Department of Theatre Arts will be adhering to the guidelines set forth by the university and La Crosse County Health Department regarding masking and social distancing.  At this time, all patrons will be required to wear a mask while in any campus building including during theatre performances. Any changes to this policy will be posted on the Theatre Department’s webpage and in the box office lobby area.