University of Evansville Theatre Announces 2023-2024 Season


EVANSVILLE, IND. (09/15/2023) The University of Evansville Theatre announces five productions for the 2023-2024 season in Shanklin Theatre and the May Studio Theatre. The Shanklin Theatre season includes a 19th-century masterpiece, a riveting rock musical, and one of the most celebrated and significant plays of the American Theatre. The May Studio season includes an Obie Award-winning drama and a comedy straight from the 2022 Broadway season.

The Shanklin Theatre season kicks off with Anton Chekhov’s THE SEAGULL translated by Tom Stoppard, Sept. 29 through Oct. 15. Assistant Professor Amelia McClain ’03 serves as director for the production. This achingly beautiful story of unrequited love is as timeless today as in the 1890s Russian countryside in which it is set. Stoppard’s masterful translation remains faithful to the humor that Chekhov intended to convey amid all the pathos. Diving into the psychological minefields between mothers, sons, lovers, and familial relations, the passionate lives of these characters are all on full display as they make decisions that are often paradoxical, sometimes destructive, but always recognizably human. A vast emotive masterpiece with music in its words, this play will sear itself into your memory!

Assistant Professor Wes Grantom ’03 adds RENT, by Jonathan Larson, to his directing credits, Nov. 10 through 19, in Shanklin Theatre. The UE production also features music direction by guest artist Tyler Simpson. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, an Obie Award, and the Tony Award for Best Musical in 1996, this iconic rock musical shaped a generation of audiences and is being performed for the first time in Shanklin Theatre. Loosely based on Puccini’s La Boheme and set in New York’s Lower East Side, this fast-paced musical follows a year in the life of a group of destitute young artists struggling to survive and stay true to their creative ambitions, all under the daunting shadow of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This exuberant American rock opera is a pop-cultural phenomenon not to be missed!

The spring season begins with two student-directed productions in the May Studio Theatre. Bradley Baumhover, a senior theatre management major from Joplin, Mo., directs A BRIGHT NEW BOISE, by Samuel D. Hunter, Feb. 15 through 18. Winner of the 2011 Obie Award for Best Playwriting, this tragi-comedic play explores the intricacies of faith and the power of forgiveness. Set in the dismal break room of a Hobby Lobby, these low-wage earners struggle with both mundane daily routines and larger questions posed by the havoc that can be wreaked by blind faith. No respite from a scintillating scrapbook section can be found here though, as group politics dissolve into utter pandemonium!

Avery Finn, a theatre studies major from Terre Haute, Ind., directs POTUS, OR BEHIND EVERY GREAT DUMBASS ARE SEVEN WOMEN TRYING TO KEEP HIM ALIVE, by Selina Fillinger, March 14 through 17. This internationally produced writer burst onto the Broadway scene with this 2022 uproarious comedy. This bawdy farce follows seven beleaguered and brilliant women trying to save the President of the United States after he unwittingly spins a PR nightmare into a global crisis. This side-splitting satire takes an irreverent look at sex, politics, and the women in charge of the man in charge of the entire country!

Visiting Assistant Professor Stacey Yen takes the helm of the final production of the season, Clifford Odet’s WAITING FOR LEFTY, in Shanklin Theatre, April 12 through 21. Inspired by true events of a 1934 New York taxicab strike, this fictional retelling creates a powerful mosaic of the trials and tribulations of the working class. First produced in 1935, this play made a sensation of its playwright, who became the theatrical conscience of a generation, and this work remains one of the most celebrated and significant plays of the American Theatre. With the fight for living wages and safe, equitable workplaces continuing to cause political debates, this seminal play illustrates the power of individual protest and the right to reform. Grab your picket sign and get ready to march!

Subscription tickets for the three-play Shanklin Theatre series are available for $50 adult and $44 for senior adults, UE employees, and any non-UE student. Patrons can also purchase a two-play May Studio Theatre subscription for $18. Single tickets for THE SEAGULL, RENT, and WAITING FOR LEFTY are $20 for adults and $18 for senior adults, UE employees, and any non- UE student. Single tickets for A BRIGHT NEW BOISE and POTUS OR, BEHIND EVERY GREAT DUMBASS ARE SEVEN WOMEN TRYING TO KEEP HIM ALIVE are $12 for all patrons. All Thursday performances are “Pay What You Will,” as part of an initiative to create access for all in the Evansville community. UE students may obtain one free student rush ticket beginning at 12:00 p.m. on the day of the performance they wish to attend for all Shanklin Theatre and May Studio productions. Season subscriptions may be purchased by calling 812.488.2031, Monday through Friday, 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Single tickets may be purchased by calling the ticket office or online at