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Posts by vutheatre

Adventures in New Play Development

 Enjoy this insight from Dramaturg Ellen “Dash” Walter on her collaboration with playwright Douglas Carter Beane.  Villanova’s Graduate Theatre Department offers an outstanding annual platform for a student dramaturg to work alongside a playwright of stature in developing a new work in the early stages of creation. Because every playwright has a unique way of…

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Music in MUCH ADO

Hey, Nonny Nonny? A brief introduction into popular music of Shakespeare’s time and today’s interpretations from our dramaturg. First off, Hey, Nonny Nonny. The phrase “Heigh, heigh a nonny-no,” appears in other songs and poems of the Early Modern period. It is present in English, Irish, and Scottish folk songs. It’s silly and trivial. Why should I pay attention? Act 2.3…

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Masquerade in Messina

Dramaturg Alexandra Curth discusses the use of masks in Much Ado About Nothing. For more information from Alexandra, click here. Much Ado is set in Messina, Italy, which is a harbor city in northeast Sicily. The lush atmosphere lends itself to a world of beauty and repose. As Don Pedro, the Prince of Aragon, and his men return…

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A Post-Electric Play

Dramaturg Ann Marley shares what the world will look like after electricity below! What’s Happening in the MR. BURNS Apocalypse?   POWER OUTAGE The initial problem in this apocalypse is the collapse of the electronic grid. The loss of electricity would see the deaths of thousands. We need electricity for water and can only survive for…

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Creating MR BURNS

  Hear from Mr. Burns dramaturg Ann Marley on the creation of the show and why playwright Anne Washburn chose The Simpsons. The Civilians, New York based theatre group commissioned Anne Washburn to write Mr. Burns in 2008. They gave her the following prompt- “What pop culture stories of this era would survive a post-apocalyptic society and…

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Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel takes place in 1905 Manhattan and follows Esther Mills as she goes about her business as a personal seamstress. Esther’s clientele lives all over New York City and range from the wealthy, upper class Mrs. Van Buren to Mayme, a prostitute from The Tenderloin. Turn of the century prostitution, however, had two distinct faces: brothels and saloons.   What’s the difference between…

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​During an interview with journalist Alexis Soloski, Nottage told the story of cleaning out her grandmother’s home. Here she found an old passport photo of her great-grandmother and her two young daughters. All Nottage knew of her great-grandmother was that she had been a seamstress and had married a Barbadian immigrant. Nottage began “searching for…

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Re-imagining GODSPELL with a gender-blind cast

Hear from our artistic director, Michael Hollinger, about our production of Godspell and the choice to cast a woman in the role of Jesus: Godspell is one of the most widely-produced musicals of the past half century, and many Americans have seen one or more productions of this beloved show.  (This is my fifth!)  Because games, role-play,…

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Our Blogs Have Moved

As of the 17-18 Season, we will be posting all of our blogs to our main website, which you an access on our main menu or by clicking here. You can read any of our earlier blogs here!  

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