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JMU School of Theatre and Dance

2014-2015 Season

Mainstage Theatre

Earlynn J. Miller Dance Theatre

Studio Theatre

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Mainstage Theatre

Christopher K. Morgan & Artists
Headlining the New Dance Festival

Friday-Saturday, September 5-6 @ 8pm

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Christopher K. Morgan founded his professional contemporary dance company in 2011, the same year Dance Magazine named him “one of the six breakout choreographers in the United States.” Since then, Christopher K. Morgan & Artists out of Washington, D.C. has performed throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. This year’s festival features new works by Christopher K. Morgan & Artists and JMU’s award-winning dance faculty members Suzanne Miller-Corso, Shane O’Hara and adjunct faculty member Julia Vessey. O’Hara, along with faculty artists Cynthia Thompson and Ryan Corriston, will perform solos; Corriston will perform on the field of destiny by world-renowned choreographer Doug Varone, set to a score by John Adams with a libretto based on Walt Whitman’s poem, The Wound Dresser. JMU dance alumnae will perform a group work.

How I Learned to Drive
By Paula Vogel

Tuesday-Saturday, September 23-27 @ 8pm
Sunday, September 28 @ 2pm

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Hold onto the wheel for “a most compelling ride” through one woman’s memories of her harrowing childhood in rural Maryland in the 1960s. Through a series of flashbacks and flash-forwards, Li’l Bit shares her story of survival through an inappropriate sexual relationship initiated by her Uncle Peck during her first driving lesson. How I Learned to Drive, which tackles serious topics and presents them in a comical way, encourages audience members to question the road to take when it comes to love, healing and forgiveness. Features students from JMU’s School of Theatre and Dance. Contains sexual content. Parental discretion advised. Q&A to follow performances on Thursday, September 25 and Sunday, September 28.
How I Learned to Drive is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Services, Inc., New York.

By Sophie Treadwell

Tuesday-Friday, October 28-31 @ 8pm
Saturday, Nobember 1 @ 2pm & 8pm

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Inspired by the sensationalist 1927 trial of Ruth Snyder, Sophie Treadwell’s expressionistic portrayal of the events and forces surrounding Snyder’s alleged crime leaves open the question of guilt. Suffocated by her manipulative mother, overbearing husband and the dehumanizing industrialism that drives Prohibition-era New York City, a “Young Woman” makes the ultimate bid for freedom. Features students from JMU’s School of Theatre and Dance. Adult content. Q&A to follow performance on Thursday, October 30 and Saturday, November 1.

Featuring JMU's Virginia Repertory Dance Company

Thursday-Saturday, December 4-6 @ 8pm
Sunday, December 7 @ 2pm

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JMU’s premier dance ensemble will present a program that is “varied, fun and athletic” (Richmond Times-Dispatch). The company will perform cutting-edge choreography by nationally known guest artists in the field of contemporary dance, including Washington, D.C.-based Christopher K. Morgan, whose work has been hailed as “charming and poignant” by The New York Times, Virginia-based Karen Reedy and Nicolas Johnson from Kansas. JMU alumnae Emily Oleson from West Virginia and Emily Cargill from Jacksonville, Florida, as well as artistic director Shane O’Hara and dance faculty member Suzanne Miller-Corso will also present new works.

Sweet Charity
Book by Neil Simon, Music by Cy Coleman, Lyrics by Dorothy Fields

Tuesday-Friday, February 24-27 @ 8pm
Saturday, February 28 @ 3pm & 8pm
Sunday, March 1 @ 2pm

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This Tony Award-winning musical comedy packed with lively choreography and snappy dialogue first opened on Broadway in 1966. It was revived in 1986 and again in 2005, and features hits such as “Big Spender,” “Rhythm of Life,” and “If My Friends Could See Me Now.” Sweet Charity is a warm, touching and humorous look at the trials and tribulations of Charity Hope Valentine who repeatedly gives her heart—and her savings—to the wrong men. Charity sings, dances, laughs and cries her way through one romance after another, all the while staying sweet and hopeful that someday her dreams will come true. Don’t miss this exuberant, fun-filled musical adventure! Features students from JMU’s School of Theatre and Dance. Q&A to follow performances on Thursday, February 26 and Sunday, March 1. 

Sweet Charity
 is produced by arrangement with, and the music and dialogue material furnished by TAMS-WITMARK, Music Library Inc., 560 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 100022

New Voices in Dance
Featuring JMU's Contemporary Dance Ensemble

Thursday-Friday, March 26-27 @ 8pm
Saturday, March 28 @ 2pm & 8pm

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Experience the vitality and creativity of the next generation of choreographers in this concert featuring works by selected JMU dance majors. The evening will also include a dance by guest choreographer Stephanie Martinez, a former principal dancer with River North Dance Chicago, as well as premieres by dance faculty artists Ryan Corriston and Cynthia Thompson.

The Cherry Orchard
By Anton Chekhov

Tuesday-Wednesday, April 28-29 @ 8pm
Friday-Saturday, May 1-2 @ 8pm
Sunday, May 3 @ 2pm

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In this funny, elegant and heartbreaking play, Chekhov’s cast of eccentric characters face the dawning of a new Russia at the turn of the 20th century. Madame Ranevskaya and her family of aristocrats are on the verge of bankruptcy. Lopakhin, a rags-to-riches merchant, has a plan to help the family keep their fortune. But is the reluctant Ranevskaya willing to pay the price? Features students from JMU's School of Theatre and Dance. Q&A to follow performances on Wednesday, April 29 and Sunday, May 3. 

Earlynn J. Miller Dance Theatre

Fall Student Dance Concert

Wednesday-Saturday, November 12-15 @ 8pm

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This showcase of new choreography offers audiences an opportunity to see the work of the Dance program’s talented young artists. 

An Evening of Dance Theatre with Shane O'Hara and Ric Rose

Friday-Saturday, January 23-24 @ 8pm

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Award-winning faculty artists Shane O’Hara (James Madison University) and Ric Rose (University of Florida) have been collaborating for more than 20 years. They reunite for a dance theatre performance that explores the male species through movement and recorded and spoken text. The evening features new works by O’Hara and Rose, a rare presentation by O’Hara of two, historic solos choreographed by modern dance pioneer Daniel Nagrin, and a humorous duet that will have audiences laughing in their seats!

Senior Dance Concert

Thursday-Saturday, February 12-14 @ 8pm

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JMU’s senior dance majors are on the verge of graduation and entering into their exciting careers as dance artists. Come watch them as they showcase their amazing work in this annual concert.

Spring Student Dance Concert

Wednesday-Saturday, April 15-18 @ 8pm

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This exciting concert features talented young dancers and choreographers from JMU’s Dance program.

Studio Theatre

Other Desert Cities
By Jon Robin Baitz

Friday-Tuesday, September 19-23 @ 8pm
Saturday, September 20 @ 2pm

Box Office: 540.568.7000

In Other Desert Cities, a play by Jon Robin Baitz (West Wing, Alias, Brothers and Sisters), Brooke Wyeth returns home to Palm Springs after a six yeaer absence.  Brooke announces that she intends on publishing a memoir that dredges up a pivotal moment in the history of the family and threatens to destroy their fragile family bonds—she essentially draws a line in the sane and dares them to cross it. Contains adult language and drug use. OTHER DESERT CITIES is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Services, Inc., New York.

Gone Missing
Written by Steve Cosson from interviews by the Civilians
Music and Lyrics by Michael Friedman

Tuesday-Saturday, October 7-11 @ 8pm
Sunday, October 12 @ 2pm

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Gone Missing is a wry and whimsical documentary musical about things that go missing: keys, personal identification, a Gucci pump, or one’s mind. It was conceived in 2003 by the Civilians, an acclaimed investigative theatre company in New York City, from man-on-the-street interviews. The show is a collection of personal accounts of things lost and found, which creates a unique tapestry of the ways in which we deal with and relate to loss in our lives. Features JMU musical theatre students. Contains adult content. GONE MISSING is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Services, Inc., New York.

Stop Kiss
By Diana Son

Friday-Tuesday, October 24-28 @ 8pm
Saturday, October 25 @ 2pm

Box Office: 540.568.7000

After moving to New York, Callie tries to navigate through her life while on a journey to discover her true identity. In an effort to be unfailingly honest with herself despite society’s pressures, she has to decide whether following her heart is worth the cost. Contains adult language and sexual content. STOP KISS is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York.

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by John Weidman

Friday-Tuesday, November 14-18 @ 8pm
Saturday, November 15 @ 2pm

Box Office: 540.568.7000

This American of musicals lays bare the lives of nine individuals who assassinated or tried to assassinate the President of the United States, in a one-act historical “revusical” that explores the dark side of the American experience. From John Wilkes Booth to Lee Harvey Oswald, writers Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman bend the rules of time and space, taking us on a nightmarish roller coaster ride in which assassins and would-be assassins from different historical periods meet, interact and inspire each other to harrowing acts in the name of the American Dream.  Contains adult language and violence. ASSASSINS is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019 Phone:212-541-4684 Fax: 212-397-4684

Director's Fest: God Fest Ye Merry Gentlemen

Block A: December 4 & 6 @ 8pm
Block B: December 5 @ 8pm & December 6 @ 2pm

Attend both blocks to see all 19 plays!

Box Office: 540.568.7000

Join us for a festival of nineteen 10-minute plays directed and designed by JMU School of Theatre students. Contains adult language and content.


College of Visual and Performing Arts
Accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Dance
Accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre