Indiana Repertory Theatre announces 2023-2024 Season beginning this fall
IRT’s 51st season marks next chapter with new leadership, lineup, and musical moments
Indianapolis, Ind.— The Indiana Repertory Theatre has announced its 2023 – 2024 Season. Scheduled from September 20, 2023, to May 19, 2024, this season will be Benjamin Hanna’s first year as the Margot Lacy Eccles Artistic Director after Janet Allen’s retirement. This new artistic journey features a lineup of beloved classics and uncharted histories, spine-chilling drama and heartwarming comedy, as well as the Theatre’s first full-scale musical in a decade.
Opening the 23-24 Season is an electrifying look at a classic thriller in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, followed by the return of the holiday tradition Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol with Priscilla Lindsay directing, and the family sitcoms of the 70s will get a contemporary lift in The Folks at Home. Two productions focus on the lives of inspirational and influential women in politics and art, including Fannie: The Music and Life of Fannie Lou Hamer and Frida … A Self Portrait. The season will go out with a song with the hilarious horticultural horror musical, Little Shop of Horrors.
“We are looking forward to welcoming our audiences back in September as we begin this new chapter,” Managing Director Suzanne Sweeney said. “With our dedicated staff, a welcoming community, supportive patrons, and shows that will spark thought and shared laughter, we are excited to embark on the Theatre’s next 50 years.”
Sweeney will co-lead with Hanna, and the transformational leadership and institutional change begins in July. A director, curator, avid arts educator, and IRT’s Associate Artistic Director for the past five years, Hanna’s passion for multigenerational theatre and dedication to equity and access fuels his investment in Indianapolis’ community to generate art for–and with–all.
“I’m honored to serve as IRT’s next artistic leader. Using theatre’s transformative power to strengthen our cultural community, my first season strives to open the doors to our Theatre wide, welcoming Hoosiers to call IRT home,” Benjamin Hanna said.
The IRT is grateful for the ongoing support from OneAmerica Financial Partners as the Season Sponsor, a partnership that has endured for more than half of the IRT’s existence.
Seated ticket packages are available now, and Build Your Own packages and single tickets will go on sale this summer. To learn more about season packages and to purchase, visit irtlive.com.
2023 – 2024 SEASON AT THE INDIANA REPERTORY THEATRE
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
adapted by David Catlin
September 20 – October 14, 2023
electrifying look at a classic thriller
Join a memorable gathering of literary giants on a dark and eerie evening as Mary Shelley stitches together her grisly Gothic tale of Victor Frankenstein and his terrifying creation. This galvanic adaptation of the classic novel thrills and enthralls as it experiments with love, grief, horror, and the power to create—or destroy—life. There’s a little monster in all of us.
A Christmas Carol
adapted by Tom Haas
November 18 – December 24, 2023
Indy’s holiday tradition
Banish your bah humbugs and celebrate the season at the Indiana Repertory Theatre! A Christmas Carol shines a light on the power of kindness and love in this uplifting tale of one man’s journey to redemption. As the weather turns cold, warm your heart with story and song at the IRT.
Fannie: The Music and Life of Fannie Lou Hamer
by Cheryl L. West
January 9 – February 4, 2024
justice will not be denied
Rising from humble roots as the daughter of a Mississippi sharecropper, Fannie Lou Hamer became a leader in the struggle for voting rights at a time when Civil Rights were far from secure. Her grit and determination to keep fighting, through bad times as well as good, shows what it means to be a true revolutionary. You’ll be clapping and crying and singing along with a show that is part theatre, part gospel revival, and all inspiration.
The Folks at Home
by R. Eric Thomas
February 20 – March 16, 2024
a modern family comedy
Roger and Brandon, an interracial couple living in South Baltimore, are doing the very best they can to live their version of the American dream: love, house, solid jobs. Except Roger’s been laid off for months, their mortgage is late…and there might be a ghost in the attic. And that was before both sets of parents decided to move in! This contemporary riff on the beloved family sitcoms of the 70s is a complex yet heartwarming portrait of modern life.
Frida … A Self Portrait
written and performed by Vanessa Severo
March 12 – April 7, 2024
extraordinary tour de force
Iconic Mexican painter Frida Kahlo was a woman who lived boldly, loved wildly, and painted prolifically in order to see herself and the world around her more clearly. With stunning stagecraft and irresistible charm, Brazilian writer and performer Vanessa Severo unearths powerful common ground between herself and Frida, inviting us to experience the artist’s vibrant, tumultuous life and rare genius.
Little Shop of Horrors
book and lyrics by Howard Ashman
music by Alan Menken
April 17 – May 19, 2024
hilarious horticultural horror musical
When shy, awkward Seymour Krelborn finds a strange and interesting new plant that sings wicked R&B, he suddenly sees an unexpected road to fame, fortune, and the heart of his true love—as long as he’s willing to pay a horrible price. This silly, scary sci-fi musical romp has devoured the hearts of audiences around the world—and now it’s coming for you! You’ll laugh. You’ll scream. You’ll give up gardening for good!
ABOUT THE IRT
Founded in 1971, the Indiana Repertory Theatre (IRT) is the largest professional not-for-profit theatre in the state and one of the leading regional theatres in the country. The mission of the Indiana Repertory Theatre is to produce top-quality, professional theatre and related activities, providing experiences that will engage, surprise, challenge, and entertain people throughout their lifetimes, helping us build a vital and vibrant community.
Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA): The IRT strives to celebrate and serve the diverse people and cultures that make up our whole community. The IRT is committed to providing access for all; to creating and maintaining an antiracist theatre that is inclusive, safe, and respectful.
Director's Note: Shakespeare's Will
By Brenda DeVita, Director
There are nine known facts about Anne Hathaway. Just nine. So researching this woman was fascinating because all I knew about her was her name. I found out pretty quickly why that was: there’s nothing out there about Anne Hathaway. It’s all about William Shakespeare.
Of course, history is built on the facts we can piece together, plus a lot of supposition to be shaped into something that sounds like truth. In Anne’s case, she is often maligned by historians (who were mostly men, writing about men, for men). So her “truth” became that she was an older woman who trapped this young, intelligent, special boy by getting pregnant and marrying him. (Because everyone wants to marry a poor playwright with no prospects, right?)
Remember … Shakespeare wasn’t SHAKESPEARE when she met him.
Shakespeare’s Will weaves those nine facts into a fully realized Anne Hathaway. A beautiful, poetic story about a brave woman in honest contemplation of her life’s choices. Anne owns the choices she’s made. Not proud of every choice but, more importantly, proud of the way she has handled them: the good ones and the bad.
One reason we tell stories, I believe, is that we long for inspiration from those who get through this thing called life with a modicum of grace. Anne is graceful. Not with a perfected, calm, angel-like grace, but an honest, steely, truthful kind of grace. A grace that most of us can understand—can aspire to.
I flatter myself to find myself in her. That is what good art does for us. I do see the parallels: independent, mother, wife of an artist … minus the grace, at times, I fear. And the play speaks to me on that very personal level. Challenges me—challenges us—to determinedly scour our lives, our choices, our actions with fierce honesty … and accept ourselves.
See Shakespeare's Will onstage now through April 16 at the IRT! Tickets are available here.
The IRT produces top-quality, professional theatre that engages, surprises, challenges and entertains people throughout their lifetimes, helping to build a vital and vibrant community.
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