Indiana Repertory Theatre returns to the heartland with Amber Waves
James Still’s drama highlights Midwestern roots and changing farming landscape
Indianapolis, Ind.—Almost twenty years after the full-length version of Amber Waves premiered at the Indiana Repertory Theatre in 2000, the heartland drama by IRT’s playwright-in-residence James Still returns to the Upperstage April 2 - April 28. Featuring music by Tim Grimm and Jason Wilber, Amber Waves follows a year in the life of an Indiana family as they face the prospect of losing their farm.
Originally a one-act play, the newest version of Amber Waves takes a deeper look at the commitment, struggle and beauty of farm and family life. For playwright James Still, the story takes inspiration from his own Midwestern background and the loss of his family farm in Kansas.
“Much has happened in the world since I first wrote the play, but one thing that hasn’t changed is that family farms continue to disappear, and with them a way of life disappears, as well,” Still said. “At its heart, Amber Waves is meant to honor generations of farmers and how the relationship to land is both holy and practical.”
James Still is also closely tied to the IRT’s Indiana Series, which has produced 19 works that focus on Midwestern and Indiana themes, biographies, and historic moments. For Executive Artistic Director Janet Allen, Amber Waves brings together many of the exploratory themes highlighted throughout the series.
“It is multigenerational in the best sense, in that it tell stories of three generations and their changing relationships to farming life,” Allen said. “It is diverse, and it is both heartbreaking and hopeful. It reminds many of us where we came from.”
Returning to the stage will be musician Tim Grimm, who previously played the role of Mike and wrote the original songs and music with Jason Wilber for the 2000 premiere. This time, in addition to the original pieces, Grimm has partnered with multi-instrumentalist Rachel Eddy to create music for the production, which they will play live onstage during each performance.
“For this production, Rachel and I will create the musical landscape of the farm, its inhabitants, and the seasons that they move through,” Tim Grimm said. “In these past 20 years, I’ve found myself forever straddling the line between theatre and music, and I love these opportunities of blending and bending the two together.”
Amber Waves is a story told with generous helpings of courage, love and humor. Tickets are available now!
WHERE: Indiana Repertory Theatre, 140 W Washington Street, IRT Upperstage
RUN DATES: April 2 - April 28, various times. Amber Waves is approximately 2 hours, including a 15-minute intermission. Tickets and performance schedule available at IRTlive.com.
TICKETS: Tickets start at $25. Click to buy.
CAST & CREATIVE TEAM:
MARY BACON | Penny
WILLIAM BROSNAHAN | Scott
CHARLES DUMAS | Johnny
RACHEL EDDY | Musician
TIM GRIMM | Musician
TORSTEN HILLHOUSE | Mike
RILEY IARIA | Julie
JORDAN PECAR | Deb
LISA ROTHE | Director
NARELLE SISSONS | Scenic Design
THERESA SQUIRE | Costume Design
MARY LOUISE GEIGER | Lighting Design
TODD MACK REISCHMAN | Sound Design
TIM GRIMM & JASON WILBER | Original Music
OPENING NIGHT | Friday, April 5, 2019 | Performance at 7:30 PM
Raise a glass and salute the cast at IRT’s Opening Night! After the show, the marquee lights shine bright as you’re treated to a champagne toast and hors d'oeuvres, and invited to a one-time-only chance to explore the set with IRT Artisans.
POST-SHOW DISCUSSION | Saturday, April 13, 2019 | Performance at 1 PM
Join IRT staff and cast immediately after the performance for a post-show discussion that covers a variety of interesting topics related to the show. Post-show discussions typically last for 20 minutes.
IRTEA TALK | Sunday, April 14, 2019 | Performance at 2 PM
After the performance enjoy tea, cookies and coffee while engaging in a post-show discussion with IRT actors, cast and guests.
ASL/AD PERFORMANCE | Sunday, April 14, 2019 | Performance at 2 PM
The IRT offers ASL/AD services to our patrons with vision and hearing needs. Patrons with hearing needs are encouraged to sit in the interpretation zone and meet with the interpreter before the show. We also offer Assisted Listening Devices free of charge at each performance. To learn more visit irtlive.com/accessibility.
BACKSTAGE TOUR | Thursday, April 18, 2019 | Following the 7:30 PM performance
Immediately following this performance, join IRT staff for an explorative and informative backstage tour. Tours typically last 30 minutes.
HAPPY HOUR | Tuesday, April 23, 2019 | Happy Hour starts at 5:30 PM | Performance at 6:30 PM
Imbibe like a local at IRT’s Happy Hour! Happy Hour starts at 5:30 PM, an hour before the performance. Sip on local libations and then nosh on mouth-watering nibbles.
COOKIES & COFFEE | Thursday, April 25, 2019 | Performance at 2 PM
Cookies and coffee will satisfy your sweet tooth, and our production will leave you wanting more! Luckily, you can have a sweet experience at the IRT’s Cookie and Coffee matinee where cookies, coffee and tea can be enjoyed before the 2 PM performance.
For more information contact Kerry Barmann, Marketing Communications Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317.916.4824
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.
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.
Marketing Communications Manager
If you are interested in reviewing a production and would like to receive media passes, please email us.