Since the dark ages of COVID, the landscape of Reed’s Theatre is better and bolder than ever. Last year’s season kicked off with a bang with Mr. Burns a Post-Electric Play (2012), written by Reed’s very own Anne Washburn ‘91 and with music by Michael Friedman. Mr. Burns, a one-act play and two-act musical, was directed by Professor Catherine Duffly. The post-apocalyptic setting mixed with themes of collective memory explored through the iconic Simpsons TV show was a rousing success, boasting packed audiences each night.
Between rehearsals for Mr. Burns, Professor Kate Bredeson’s Directing class held open auditions for low-commitment scenes directed by students partaking in the class. The directors’ chosen scenes were showcased, earning students valuable experience in the directing field, and were a great way for students to get involved in theatre without a huge time commitment.
In the Spring, Sizheng Song’s (‘23) Antigona Furiosa (1985-86) kicked off the season of senior thesis shows. Song implemented spectacular puppetry and artistry in Griselda Gambaro’s Argentinian drama influenced by the Athenian tragedy by Sophocles.
The next thesis show was Ian Silverman’s (‘23) VR The Little Prince, which used VR technology to create the outer-space environment of the show.
The third production was put on by Aaron Berlau (‘23) and Anna Hendrickson (‘23): The Wild Boar of Chernobyl (2018) written by Francesca Pazniokas. Wild Boar was a thrilling cult horror, with an eerie atmosphere created by the spectacular use of lighting, space, and intense performances.
And last of the thesis shows was Will Stevens’ (‘23) Frankensteinian version of Blue Heart (1997), written by Caryl Churchill. Blue Heart’s actors made spectacular use of the linguistic disease present in the script, making the show a ket-ket-kettle time.
Then there was the Playwriting class showcase, another class taught by Prof. Kate Bredeson, in which students got the chance to hear their work read by their choice of volunteer actors. The showcase provided playwrights with the opportunity to understand how their plays could be performed, and was another opportunity for students to get involved in low-commitment theatre at Reed.
Topping off the season was the spring main-stage show, The Last Croissant (2013) written by Veronica Tijoe and directed by visiting Professor Barbie Wu, the newest addition to the department. The Last Croissant was a wildly whimsical show with wonderful acting and tech. Students even got to work with Veronica Tijoe themselves, and they brought excellent insight to the production of the show.
With all that said, stay tuned to the events page on the productions coming this year to Reed!