CREEDE — Beginning May 19, Creede Repertory Theatre (CRT) will produce its 58th season, which includes comedy, drama, romance, a world premiere and something for the entire family. CRT will continue to champion its thriving educational and audience engagement programming.
"Excitement is palpable for summer 2023,” says Producing Artistic Director John DiAntonio. “We’ve got a large-scale classic musical back on the Mainstage and a whodunnit that will leave audiences rolling in the aisles with laughter. Two shows are returning to our stages in 2023: one finally getting its due after a postponement last summer and the other back by popular demand. Our investment in new work continues with a world premiere written exclusively for Creede Rep; and, as always, explosive improv comedy and dynamic educational programs that will reach tens of thousands of students.”
The season begins at CRT’s historic Mainstage Theatre with the return of 2021’s “Dear Jack, Dear Louise” by Ken Ludwig. Sparks fly and love blossoms from a world away when US Army doctor, Jack, begins a correspondence with aspiring actress, Louise, during WWII. This romantic comedy and audience favorite will again feature Caitlin Wise and Graham Ward, and will be directed by Michael Perlman (“Always…Patsy Cline,” “Is He Dead?”).
Next up in the intimate Ruth Humphreys Brown Theatre is the world premiere of “Mountain Octopus” by Beth Kander (“Hazardous Materials,” “To the Moon”) which will feature longtime CRT company members Christy Brandt and Kate Berry. One year after a tragic loss, a small town full of quirky characters gathers together to patch up what's broken. Nothing goes quite as planned...but ultimately each person finds something unexpected within their old familiar world or something that feels like home in a new and unfamiliar place.
Also at the Ruth Humphreys Brown Theatre is “The Royale” by Marco Ramirez, directed by Kyle Haden who directed the world premiere of “Hazardous Materials” in 2019. The most anticipated show of 2022 has finally arrived. Set in the early 20th century and inspired by the life of the first Black heavyweight champion of the world, Jack Johnson, this sports drama brings to life the ultimate fight for a place in history.
The Mainstage will also feature “CLUE: On Stage” written by Sandy Rustin based on the Paramount Pictures Motion Picture screenplay by Jonathan Lynn and the Hasbro board game CLUE. It’s a dark and stormy night and you've been invited to a very mysterious dinner party at the ominous Boddy Manor. Each of the guests has an alias, the butler offers a variety of weapons, and the host is, well, dead. Join the iconic cast of characters known as Scarlet, Plum, White, Green, Peacock and Mustard as they race to find out whodunnit before the body count stacks up. “CLUE: On Stage” will be directed by CRT Producing Artistic Director John DiAntonio.
Rounding out the Mainstage is the family-friendly fairytale “Rogers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella,” directed by Brittni Shambaugh Addison. This 2013 Broadway adaptation of the beloved musical with a new book by Douglas Carter Beane sparkles with new characters, a hilarious libretto, and exciting twists alongside the classic score by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. With unforgettable songs such as “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It's Possible” and “Ten Minutes Ago,” you'll be tapping your feet all the way home.
If it’s improv that delights, Boomtown! Improv Comedy also returns to The Ruth starting June 16. Now at 9:30 p.m. so you can be in bed by 11 p.m. exhausted by all of the frivolity.
CRT’s annual Headwaters New Play Festival is back for its 11th year, featuring new work by 2023 commissioned playwright, Leonard Madrid. Madrid is a New Mexico-based playwright and theatremaker. He has received the Kennedy Center’s Latinx Playwriting award three times and his play, “Cebollas,” was part of the 2022 Colorado New Play Summit at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. 2023 will also see the return of the 10 Minute Play Festival, which will take place during Headwaters Festival weekend in late August.
Education at CRT will be celebrating 21 years of The KID Show with “Ask a Kid” written by Steve Moulds and directed by CRT’s Associate Education Director Jenni Harbour. In this new sci-fi musical, a group of friends forms an advice column for the students at their school, and it’s a runaway success. But when the questions coming in start getting weird, the kids investigate. Is someone pranking them — or are these bizarro messages surprisingly sincere? Running July 28 through July 30 at The Ruth, The KID Show offers a professional theatrical experience for students ages 10 and older through the creation of an original show. Additionally, the Education Department hosts camps for learners of all ages June 13 through July 1.
CRT’s flagship program, the Young Audience Outreach Tour, now in its 40th season, is staging the world premiere of “The City Dog and the Prairie Dog” by Diana Grisanti, Aug. 25 and Aug. 26, at the Virginia Christensen Multi-Use Facility. Featuring the creative team of “Casa Alfonsa and El Guayabo/The Guava Tree,” “The City Dog and the Prairie Dog” is a bilingual musical for grades K-6, exploring themes of community and belonging. Expect to dance, laugh, and sing along, with lots of audience participation.
For more information on the season schedule and ticket information, go to www.creederep.org.