Dallas — The 2019-2020 season for Uptown Players has been announced, and it follows the group’s blueprint of regional premieres, both musicals and plays. There’s also a contemporary classic American play in the mix, John Guare’s Six Degrees of Separation.
The first musical is the first locally produced production of the Tony-winning Fun Home, based on the graphic novel by Alison Bechdel, about a girl growing up realizing she is gay, and coming to terms with the death of her father, who was also gay. The tour of that show came to AT&T Performing Arts Center in 2017. The other big musical is the regional premiere of Head Over Heels, which uses the music of The Go-Go’s to tell a new narrative. (Think the same kind of structure as Mamma Mia!)
Also on the season is a new play from Del Shores, A Very Sordid Wedding, based on the film that was a sequel to his hit comedy Sordid Lives; and a male entry into the Nunsense franchise, called Nuncrackers A-men! To boot, the popular fundraiser Broadway Our Way is back at the Kalita Humphreys Theater, after one year at Moody Performance Hall.
Below is the complete news release from Uptown Players.
Uptown Players, a professional theater group located in the Uptown area of Dallas, has announced its 2019-2020 season at the Kalita Humphreys Theater. The season will feature the regional premieres of the 2015 Tony Award winning musical, Fun Home, the 2019 Outer Critics Circle and Drama League nominated musical, Head Over Heels, and a new twist on the Nunsense holiday special, Nuncrackers. In addition, the season will include the 2017 Tony Award nominated play, Six Degrees of Separation. Uptown Players will also present two bonus add-on shows to its season lineup: the world premiere of the latest play (based on the hit film) from Del Shores, A Very Sordid Wedding and Uptown Players’ annual fundraising production, Broadway Our Way.
By Dan Goggin
December 6-15, 2019
Uptown Players opens their season with Dan Goggin's Nunsense Christmas Musical Nuncrackers A-men!, It stars the nuns you love, this time played by men, plus Father Virgil and four of Mount Saint Helen’s most talented students. Featuring all new songs, including “Twelve Days Prior to Christmas,” “Santa Ain’t Comin’ to Our House,” “We Three Kings of Orient Are Us” and “It’s Better to Give than to Receive,” this show is filled with wacky Nunsense humor as the sisters tape their first TV special in the Cable Access Studio built by Reverend Mother in the convent basement. Certain to tickle your funny bone and likely to tug at your heartstrings, Nuncrackers A-men! is the perfect way to make your yuletide gay!
Broadway Our Way 2020
January 16-19, 2020
The Uptown Players divas return for another entertaining weekend of Broadway music with plenty of twists, laughs and surprises. The evening features many of your favorite actors from past Uptown Players seasons performing selections from Broadway shows, both past and present, all done with an Uptown Players twist! Our annual fundraiser Broadway Our Way moves back to the Kalita Humphreys Theater this year. For the ninth straight year, the show will be written and directed by B. J. Cleveland.
April 10-26, 2020
Music and lyrics by Jeanine Tesori, Book by Lisa Kron
The winner of five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Fun Home is a musical masterpiece adapted by Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori from Alison Bechdel's 2006 graphic memoir. When her father dies unexpectedly, graphic novelist Alison dives deep into her past to tell the story of the volatile, brilliant, one-of-a-kind man whose temperament and secrets defined her family and her life. Moving between past and present, Alison relives her unique childhood playing at the family’s Bechdel Funeral Home, her growing understanding of her own sexuality, and the looming, unanswerable questions about her father’s hidden desires. Described as “A rare beauty, extraordinary and heart-gripping” by Ben Brantley in The New York Times, Fun Home is a refreshingly honest, wholly original musical about seeing your parents through grown-up eyes.
Six Degrees of Separation
By John Guare
May 29 – June 7, 2020
Uptown Players continues its 2019-2020 season with the 2017 Tony Award nominee for Best Revival of a Play, Six Degrees of Separation, written by John Guare. Inspired by a true story, the play follows the trail of a young black con man who insinuates himself into the lives of a wealthy New York couple, claiming he knows their son at college. Paul tells them he is the son of actor Sidney Poitier, and that he has just been mugged and all his money is gone. After they discover him in bed with a young male hustler from the streets, the picture begins to change. One of the greatest American plays of our time, Guare’s script examines the threads of chance that link one person to another. A splendidly funny, often disquieting, exploration of the way human beings define themselves and classify each other.
Head Over Heels
Conceived by Jeff Whitty and James Magruder
July 10 – 26, 2020
For the final mainstage production of its 2019-2020 season, Uptown Players presents the regional premiere of the recent Broadway musical, Head Over Heels, the bold new musical comedy from the visionaries that rocked Broadway with Hedwig and the Angry Inch and Avenue Q. This laugh-out-loud love story is set to the music of the iconic 1980’s all-female rock band The Go-Go’s, including the hit songs, “We Got the Beat,” “Our Lips Are Sealed,” “Vacation,” Belinda Carlisle’s “Heaven is a Place on Earth” and “Mad About You.” A hilarious, exuberant celebration of love, Head Over Heels follows the escapades of a royal family on an outrageous journey to save their beloved kingdom from extinction—only to discover the key to their realm’s survival lies within each of their own hearts.
A Very Sordid Wedding
By Del Shores
August 21 – 30, 2020
Uptown Players closes its nineteenth season with a special limited-run presentation of the world premiere of Del Shores’ new play, A Very Sordid Wedding. It's 2015, seventeen years after Peggy tripped over G.W.'s wooden legs and died in Sordid Lives, and life has moved into the present for the residents of Winters, Texas. Based on the 2017 hit film of the same name, A Very Sordid Wedding explores the questions, bigotry and the fallout of what happens when gay marriage comes to communities and families that are not quite ready to accept it. Bigoted “religious freedom,” marriage equality and cultural acceptance are all explored with Del Shores’ trademark approach to using comedy and his much-beloved Sordid Lives characters to deal with these important current social issues and the very real process of accepting your family for who they are instead of who you want them to be.
Individual ticket prices for all shows range from $25 to $60. All performances this season take place at the Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd at Blackburn. Performances generally take place Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Four, five, or six show season ticket flex packages are available and include great discounts on both premium and regular seating. Season tickets can be purchased online at www.uptownplayers.org or by phone at 214-219-2718.
About Uptown Players:
Uptown Players is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, presenting plays and musicals that challenge audiences artistically and create greater positive public awareness and acceptance through the performing arts. The 2019-2020 season will be its nineteenth season and its eleventh season at the Kalita Humphreys Theater. Uptown Players is one of the leading regional theaters in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area and is providing an opportunity for a wide diversity of gender styles to come together and explore life choices through great theatre themes such as relationships, family, prejudice, and values. The response from the community and critics has been remarkable, including over 25 Leon Rabin Awards from the Dallas Theatre League, and over 25 Theater Critics Forum Awards. Uptown Players has also been named the best theatre company by the Dallas Voice Readers and by the Dallas Observer and has been featured in D Magazine and on WFAA’s Daybreak and Good Morning Texas programs.
Uptown Players has presented several world premieres, including Gilligan’s Fire Island (2015) Redesigning Women (2013), Crazy Just Like Me (2011) and the stage adaptation of The Valley of the Dolls (2007), along with the United States premieres of the West End hit musical Soho Cinders (2014), and the Pet Shop Boys Musical Closer to Heaven (2010). Uptown Players was the first regional theater in the United States to present the Tony Award Winner The Boy from Oz and the Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize winning musical Next to Normal, following the closing of the Broadway productions. Each season, Uptown Players presents several regional premieres, including recent productions of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, The Legend of Georgia McBride, It Shoulda Been You, End of the Rainbow, The Nance, Catch Me If You Can, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, and The Producers.
Uptown Players 2018-2019 Season:
Nuncrackers A-Men!: December 6 – 15, 2019
Broadway Our Way 2020: January 16 – 19, 2020
Fun Home: April 10 – 26, 2020
Six Degrees of Separation: May 29 – June 7, 2020
Head Over Heels: July 10 – 26, 2020
A Very Sordid Wedding: August 21 – 30, 2020