2017/18 Season

New. Now. Necessary.

Single tickets to our 2017/18 season are on sale NOW. For information on Subscriptions, click here.

“Our 2017/18 season includes of some of the most provocative, talked about and acclaimed new plays in recent memory. These seven playwrights are urgently responding to our complicated times and will make you think, feel and start a conversation,” said Dámaso Rodríguez, Artists Rep’s Artistic Director. “I am especially proud that Artists Rep will take on the challenge of producing the timely world premiere of Oregon playwright E.M. Lewis’ extraordinary epic Magellanica, a play with the immersive grip of a great novel. It will be an unforgettable theatre experience.”

The 2017/18 selections emphasize a strong commitment to reflecting the world we live in today through a wide variety of voices. This group of plays is unflinching, topical and designed to create robust dialogue.

Artistic Director Dámaso Rodríguez and Managing Director Sarah Horton recently stated for the company’s 2017 The Ghostlight Project ceremony:

“We believe that it is the special role of theatre to create art that illuminates our commonality, seeks truth, promotes empathy and encourages connection. It has always been our responsibility as art-makers to do that. For us, the key to fulfilling that potential lies in using the power of theatre to share and amplify many perspectives, voices and points of view. We reaffirm our commitment to our mission statement: to produce intimate, provocative theatre and provide a home for artists of varied backgrounds to take creative risks …with renewed urgency.”

Artists Rep’s productions feature the work of  the Resident Artist Company, alongside guest artists from Portland’s professional theatre community and beyond. Now comprised of more than two dozen theatre practitioners, Artists Rep’s Resident Artists represent some of Portland’s finest talent, in a variety of theatrical disciplines.

 

An Octoroon

By Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
Co-Directed by Lava Alapai & Dámaso Rodríguez

September 3 – October 1

Alder Stage

An Octoroon is a raucously irreverent riff off a 19th Century hit melodrama set on a Louisiana plantation. Branden Jacobs-Jenkins offers a brazen and metatheatrical experience that twists a world of larger-than-life stereotypes into blistering social commentary. It's a hilarious and gasp-inducing satire from one of America's most thrilling writers. 

  • Shocking Comedy
  • 2014 OBIE Award for Best New Play
  • MacArthur Genius Grant winning playwright

Caught

October 1 – October 29

Morrison Stage | 90 min. with no intermission

An installation of visual art and live theatre presented in partnership with The Chújú Gallery/SF and The Geezer Gallery

“Lin Bo’s artwork – in combination with the theatrical installation, Qín (Caught) – is a fascinating labyrinth. The performance itself is compulsively engaging, chockfull of twists and impish conspiracy. Spoiler Alert: Come prepared to be surprised!” – San Francisco News

Ripped from today’s headlines and breaking the theatrical mold, artist Lin Bo’s work, Qín (Caught), presents a sly philosophical puzzle that investigates the murky intersections of fact and fiction in the crafting of art and news. The show features Lin, a dissident visual, performance and conceptual artist whose piece, Shìwēi (‘Rally’), led to his arrest and two-year detention by the Chinese government in 2012. After his release, Lin moved to San Francisco and launched a traveling exhibition of his work to Vancouver BC, Tacoma, Portland, Las Vegas and Minneapolis. In each city, Lin is partnering with theatre companies rather than traditional gallery spaces; in Portland, Artists Rep is hosting the exhibit.

The Artists Rep exhibition includes his current work, as well as a new theatrical piece, Qín (Caught), a lively exploration of the American obsession with ‘story’ and ’narrative’ as markers for ‘authenticity.’ Lin will be introducing the work at each performance, and discussing his harrowing experiences in detention under the Chinese authorities. Recently profiled by The New Yorker Magazine, he is writing a book about his journey as a dissident artist in an authoritarian culture, which will be published following this tour. In Portland, Lin is collaborating with artists: playwright Christopher Chen, Dmae Roberts, Chris Harder, Sara Hennessy, Greg Watanabe, Horatio Hung-Yan Law, Megan Wilkerson, Sarah Gahagan, Jennifer Lin, Rodolfo Ortega, Mary McDonald-Lewis, Samson Syharath and Shawn Lee to recreate this piece for Portland viewers.  

Static elements of Lin Bo’s work may be viewed throughout October in the Morrison Lobby at Artists Rep on Tuesday through Sunday, noon to 6pm. Tickets to the live performance, where attendees can hear Lin’s introductory remarks, are available starting Aug. 1.

For further research surrounding the art instillation and performance piece of the play, you can read about Mike Daisey here and James Frey here

The Humans

By Stephen Karam
Directed by Dámaso Rodríguez

November 19 – December 17

Morrison Stage | 95 min. with no intermission

It’s the small dinner party that made big waves on Broadway about a fractured family at its not-so-finest. A bold, bruised, and billowing drama, The Humans layers the fabric of a family's past as they gather at the youngest daughter and her boyfriend's New York Chinatown apartment for a holiday meal. As the Blake family poke at old wounds and forcibly stumble through treasured traditions, tensions bubble over, secrets fight their way to the surface, and the world creaks curiously around them.
“There is so much love, dread, tenderness and brutality in The Humans…deeply-felt family tragicomedy thriller...” - Newsday

  • See the huge Broadway hit up and close and personal right here in Portland!
  • 2016 Tony Award for Best Play
  • 2016 Pulitzer Prize finalist

Magellanica

By E.M. Lewis
Directed by Dámaso Rodríguez

January 20 – February 18

Morrison Stage

In 1986, scientists and engineers from around the world converge at the South Pole Research Station to figure out, among other things, if there really is a hole in the sky. In the darkest, coldest, most dangerous place on Earth, eight imperfect souls are trapped together. Utterly isolated from the outside world for eight and a half months, this research team must face life or death challenges, their own inner demons and depend upon each other for survival.

With epic scope in the tradition of The Kentucky Cycle or Angels in America, this play takes its inspiration from the true story of the discovery of the hole in the ozone layer at the height of the Cold War. Part historical adventure, love story and mystical foray into the unknown, it’s about a world that can either tear apart or come together for its own survival. It’s a vital story for today and an extraordinary excursion for audiences to the ends of the Earth.

ONLY 18 TRIPS SCHEDULED. BOOK YOUR PASSAGE TODAY! 

  • Epic. Captivating. Unforgettable.
  • A 5-part adventure, with three intermissions and a dinner break, click here to check out the menu!
  • Award-winning Oregonian playwright
  • Limited Run
  • Oregon Community Foundation Creative Heights Grant recipient
  • Edgerton Foundation New Play Award-winner

HAVE YOUR TICKETS BOOKED? CLICK HERE TO ARRANGE YOUR MEAL! 

Between Riverside and Crazy

By Stephen Adly Guirgis
Directed by Adriana Baer

March 4 – April 1

Alder Stage

Meet Walter “Pops” Washington, retired after 30 years from the NYPD after being shot by a white, rookie cop. Holding court from his recently deceased wife’s wheelchair over a motley crew of housemates, he righteously, tenaciously, holds out for a police department settlement until an ecstatic experience shakes him from inaction.  For once, “Pops” will make it go how he wants it to go while everyone else hustles to get what they think they deserve. A well-lived life can’t only be eating Ring Dings, drinking whiskey all day and living in a ramshackle palace on Riverside Drive, now can it?

  • Rich and colorful comedy with a cast of characters right off the city streets.
  • 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
  • 2015 New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play
  • From the writer of The Motherfucker with the Hat

The Thanksgiving Play

By Larissa FastHorse (Sicangu Lakota)
Directed by Luan Schooler

April 1 – April 29

Morrison Stage

A group of mismatched teachers and actors have been charged by the school district to devise an ethnically sensitive play to somehow celebrate both Thanksgiving and Native American Heritage Month. In order to be as respectful and accurate as possible, the three white actors defer to the only Native American in the room for guidance and find their expectations of her insights are wildly misguided. In this wickedly funny satire, this foursome must find their way through a hilarious thicket of assumptions, historical perspectives and school district policies as the absurd pageant must go on!

  • Provocative Satire
  • Multiple Fellowship and Award-winning playwright
  • PEN USA Literary Award for Drama
  • TABLE|ROOM|STAGE commission

I And You

By Lauren Gunderson
Directed by JoAnn Johnson

May 20 – June 17

Morrison Stage

Two teens – a sick and snarky girl who hates poetry, and a sweet and sporty boy who just wants to get his class work  project done  – are thrust together to work on a school project about Walt Whitman’s poems. Like boxers in a ring, the mismatched pair spar their way through Whitman's epic Song of Myself into an uneasy friendship. With growing urgency and searing poignancy, I and You is a funny, tender and surprising journey about the strange beauty of human connectedness.  

  • Revelatory Drama
  • 2014 Steinberg American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award
  • 2014 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize
  • 2016 Dramatist Guild Award Winner

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