theatre kalamazoo

Courtesy photo | Face Off Theatre Company

After tragically losing her brother, a young woman named Yolanda is sent to live with her grandmother, Mother Shaw. Mother Shaw takes the reluctant Yolanda in, and soon Mother Shaw's circle of friends becomes interested in Yolanda's welfare. These ladies take pride in dressing up for church and wearing spectacular hats to Sunday services-- hats that have stayed in families for years, each one a uniquely personal possession.  That's the premise of Regina Taylor's play CROWNS, which will run from Feb 27 - Mar 1 at the Judy K. Joliffe Theatre in downtown Kalamazoo.

In this radio interview, Cara Lieurance spoke with Face Off Theatre Company's founder/artistic director Marissa Harrington, actress Brenda Earvin (Mother Shaw), and actress Jeannine Jones (Wanda) about the hats, gospel music, and themes of hope and healing community that CROWNS has to offer.

C. Lieurance

Dr.Steve Feffer is a professor of English at Western Michigan University, and is a founding organizer of Theatre Kalamazoo's New PlayFest. He and playwright Bethany Gibson, whose Dreamgirl will be performed twice during the two-day festival, join Cara Lieurance to expand on the events of the festival and the importance of showcasing Kalamazoo's playwrights.    ​

The free festival, now in its 10th year, is Saturday and Sunday, Feb 15 and 16 at the Judy K. Jolliffe Theatre in downtown Kalamazoo. Eight new 10-minute plays will be performed, under the direction of eight theatre organizations.

For a full schedule and more information, visit the New Playfest site.

Jack Pinto ("Buddy the Elf"), director Tony Humrichouser, choreographer Lesa Denklau, actress Kathleen Weissert ("Deb") and marketing director Janet Gover each contribute behind-the-scenes stories about the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre's production of Elf The Musical, in a live interview with Cara Lieurance. This stage adaptation of the 2003 film starring Will Ferrell will run from Friday, Nov 22 - Sunday, Dec 8.

Theatre Kalamazoo

Every play starts on paper and undergoes a sometimes arduous journey of transformation to reach the stage. For nine years, Theatre Kalamazoo's New PlayFest has taken a stand for local playwrights, offering talented writers a free public showcase for their work. Dr. Steve Feffer says the plays, most of which are around 10 minutes in length, are prepared by various regional theatre companies, who will share the stage at the Joliffe Theatre in the Epic Center on Friday, Feb 8 and Saturday, Feb 9. Feffer and Amber Palmer, a candidate for a master's degree in playwrighting from Western Michigan University, join Cara to preview the event.

New Play Fest Guest Focuses On LGBT, Latino Stories

Jan 26, 2017
Brandy Joe Plambeck

Emilio Rodriguez is this year’s guest of honor at the annual Theatre Kalamazoo New Play Festival, February 3rd and 4th at the Judy K. Jolliffe Theatre (formerly known as the Epic Center Theatre). He’s known for telling lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender stories - especially from the perspective of people of color.