After nearly two years with its theater dark, the University of Delaware’s Resident Ensemble Players will return in 2022 with a two-play indoor season.
Its first show will be “Blue Door” by Tanya Barfield, running Feb. 24-March 13. The second production will be “Yeah Baby,” a new comedy from Theresa Rebeck.
The theater turned to virtual performances during the pandemic.
“We consider it a sacred privilege to participate in live theatre,” says Sandy Robbins, producing artistic director. “In the REP’s Mission Statement we say: ‘Coming together for the speaking and listening of the words of great plays serves the community by providing an access to that which is eternal and cannot itself be spoken.’
“We could not be more excited to be on the brink of reuniting with our beloved audience and once again participating together to evoke the magic of live theatre.”
REP, which is UD’s professional theatre company in residence, features a core troupe of actors who also double as theater instructors, fight choreographers, directors and more.
“Blue Door” will look at important issues of identity, race and the impact of the past on the present. The action is triggered when a successful African American mathematics professor’s white wife announces that she is leaving him because he won’t attend the Million Man March.
Out of disorienting insomnia, the professor conjures the specters of his ancestors who lead him on an emotional, often humorous journey through the past and present.
Rebeck’s “Yeah Baby” will be her fourth play written for REP and will run from April 21 to May 8.
The most-produced female playwright on Broadway, Rebeck also created NBC’s “Smash,” and the new movie, “The 355 ” coming out in 2022 and starring Sebastian Stan (the Winter Soldier from Marvel movies), Jessica Chastain, Fan Bingbing, Lupita Nyong’o, Edgar Ramirez, Diane Kruger, Marion Cotillard and more.
Her new play will follow a day in the lives of a group of professional theater artists who find out that what they think the world is actually is not what the world is.
Meant to be a love letter to the theater and the courage it takes to make something out of nothing, it also depicts a struggle to confront the improbable as well as the impossible.
The REP’s box office will reopen in January, with a two-show subscription package going on sale in January and single tickets in February. For more information, go to www.rep.udel.edu.
Shows are at the Roselle Center for the Arts, 110 Orchard Road, Newark.
Betsy Price is a Wilmington freelance writer who has 40 years of experience, including 15 at The News Journal in Delaware.
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