Portland Center Stage at The Armory’s 2020-2021 Season

× HAIR × FRIDA … A SELF PORTRAIT × THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY × HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH × MISS BENNET: CHRISTMAS AT PEMBERLEY × GEM OF THE OCEAN × YOUNG AMERICANS × EMMA × THE BROTHERS SIZE × GIRLFRIEND ×

Portland Center Stage at The Armory announced its 2020-2021 ten-show season, featuring music, humor, Tony Award-winning classics, and a Northwest Stories commissioned world premiere from nationally renowned playwright Lauren Yee.

“In my first year and a half as artistic director, I’ve been blown away by the depth of engagement and support from Pacific Northwest audiences,” said Marissa Wolf. “Each show in the 2020-2021 season reveals a moving tenderness at its center, creating a space for all of us, as strangers, friends, and neighbors, to come together as a community in the theater night after night.”

“Building on the energy of our current season, the lineup is brimming with joyful music, sumptuous theatrical spectacle, searing truths, and brilliant humor, all while cracking open the most crucial issues of our time,” Wolf continued.

Renewing subscriptions are on sale now. New subscriptions will go on sale later this week. Single tickets go on sale August 3. To purchase season tickets, call 503-445-3700 or visit www.pcs.org. The Create Your Own Package starts at $100.80 for three plays. The seven-show U.S. Bank Main Stage Series starts at $235.20. The ten-show Everything Series starts at $336.00. The eight-admission Flexpass is available for $520. The Armory Card, a hugely popular option for those who are 35 years old or younger, starts at $100 for five admissions. Groups of 10 or more can sign up for the priority seating list now. Groups that book by August 1 receive 25% off regular ticket prices. To order group tickets call 503-445-3794 or visit www.pcs.org/groups. Find out more about the 2020-2021 season at www.pcs.org/2020-2021-season.

HAIR

Book & Lyrics by Gerome Ragni & James Rado
Music by Galt MacDermot
Directed by James Vásquez
Choreographed by Rickey Tripp
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | August 29 – October 11, 2020
Opening Night/Press Night September 4, 2020

Don’t miss the sensational rock musical that gave voice to the joyous spirit and raging rebellion of the 1960s! More than fifty years later, the show still resounds with a spectacular cry for lifting up our collective voices. A group of young, idealistic friends is thrown into chaos when one of their own is drafted to fight in the Vietnam War. Featuring the exuberant anthems “Aquarius” and “Let the Sunshine In,” Hair’s themes of protest and celebration will have you dancing in your seat.

·         “Triumphant, glorious, and breathtaking! Hair is a musical for the ages because it’s a musical for the now.” -New York Post

·         Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical, 2009

·         Tony Award nomination for Best Musical, 1969

·         A co-production with The Old Globe of San Diego

FRIDA … A SELF PORTRAIT

Written & Performed by Vanessa Severo
Directed by Joanie Schultz
In the Ellyn Bye Studio | September 5 – October 18, 2020
Opening Night/Press Night September 11, 2020

Set on the eve of Frida Kahlo’s death, this intimate show plunges into the brilliant, nuanced world of Kahlo’s tumultuous, extraordinary life. Writer and performer Vanessa Severo cracks open a powerful portal between herself and the celebrated Mexican painter, bringing breathtaking physicality and raw honesty to this stunningly creative production.

·         “Colorful and imaginative … a deeply affecting drama that leaves an ineradicable imprint.” -The Pitch

THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY

By Kristoffer Diaz
Directed by Dámaso Rodríguez
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | October 24 – November 22, 2020
Opening Night/Press Night October 30, 2020

This comic powerslam of a play tackles racism and geopolitics through drop-kicking humor and the thrilling spectacle of pro wrestling. Macedonio “The Mace” Guerra is a “jobber” — the guy who loses to make the champions look good. Hoping for his ticket to the big time, he partners with a charismatic, trash-talking Indian kid from Brooklyn, who’s the perfect foil to help him take on the all-American champ, Chad Deity. But the rivalry is used to exploit racial stereotypes in the name of ratings and all three men find themselves fighting for much more than the championship title.

·         Pulitzer Prize finalist 2010, winner of the Obie for Best New American Play 2011, winner of the National Latino Playwriting Award 2008, winner of the NYT Outstanding Playwright Award 2011

·         “[Chad Deity] has the delicious crackle and pop of a galloping, honest-to-God, all-American satire.” -The New York Times

·         “Fiercely original and hugely entertaining.” -TheaterMania

·         A co-production with Artists Repertory Theatre

Delphon DJ Curtis Jr. as Hedwig_Photo by Owen Carey

HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH

By John Cameron Mitchell
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Trask
Directed by Chip Miller
Starring Delphon “DJ” Curtis Jr. and Ithica Tell
In the Ellyn Bye Studio | November 3 – December 20, 2020
Opening Night/Press Night November 6, 2020

A 7-week remount of our sold-out hit!

Brilliantly innovative, heartbreaking, and wickedly funny, this genre-bending, fourth-wall-smashing musical sensation tells the story of one of the most unique characters to ever hit the stage. Hedwig, a German emigrant, is out to set the record straight about her life, her loves, and the operation that left her with that “angry inch.” Part rock concert, part cabaret, part stand-up comedy routine, this one-of-a-kind musical proves time and again that an indomitable spirit can’t ever be tied down.

·         “This glam rock concert musical delivers the goods — it’s a kickass testament to self-acceptance.” –BroadwayWorld

·         Winner of 4 Tony Awards, including Best Revival of a Musical

Lauren Modica, Treasure Lunan, and Kailey Rhodes_photo by Kate Szrom

MISS BENNET: CHRISTMAS AT PEMBERLEY

By Lauren Gunderson & Margot Melcon
Directed by Marissa Wolf
Starring Lauren Modica as Mary Bennet
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | December 5 – 27, 2020
Opening Night/Press Night December 11, 2020

A 3-week limited run of our 2019 holiday favorite!

Middle sister Mary finally takes center stage in this charming and clever sequel to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. She’s happy in the company of books and her piano, but Mary has grown tired of her role as the dutiful daughter. When the Bennet sisters gather at the home of Lizzy and Darcy for the holidays, an unexpected guest sparks Mary’s hopes for independence, an intellectual match, and perhaps even love. Blending modern wit and period style, this enchanting romantic comedy promises to delight Austen fans and their entire families.

·         “It sends off its audience basking in seasonal cheer and believing once again in the promise of soulmates.” –The Oregonian

GEM OF THE OCEAN

By August Wilson
Directed by Chip Miller
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | January 16 – February 14, 2021
Opening Night/Press Night January 22, 2021

An iconic story of freedom, justice, and salvation from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Fences.
Pittsburgh, 1904: Amidst boiling racial tensions, Citizen Barlow arrives at the home of Aunt Ester, a 285-year-old healer, who helps him seek redemption from a mistake that’s cost another man his life. She sends Citizen on a powerful, mystical journey to the City of Bones in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean — where he must understand the past in order to forge his own future. Gem of the Ocean is the first chronological work in August Wilson’s 10-play, Pulitzer Prize-winning Pittsburgh Cycle, dramatizing African American life in the 20th century.

·         “A swelling battle hymn of transporting beauty.” -The New York Times

·         Tony Award nomination for Best Play, 2005

YOUNG AMERICANS

By Lauren Yee
Directed by Desdemona Chiang
In the Ellyn Bye Studio | February 20 – April 4, 2021
Opening Night/Press Night February 26, 2021

With David Bowie blaring from a mixtape, Young Americans takes us on two identical road trips, 20 years apart. An exhaustingly upbeat father and his stressed out college-aged daughter drive cross-country from DC to Portland; a journey that mirrors the one he took decades earlier as a new immigrant full of fresh hopes and dreams. This intimate comedy veers back and forth in time, as Yee explores what home and belonging mean to those in transition.

·         A Portland Center Stage at The Armory world premiere commission from the acclaimed playwright of Cambodian Rock Band

·         A new play from one of the hottest playwrights in America: Yee’s work has been hailed as “gleefully irreverent,” “whip-smart and very funny,” “wildly inventive,” and “courageous”

EMMA

Adapted by Kate Hamill
Based on the novel by Jane Austen
Directed by Margot Bordelon
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | March 6 – April 4, 2021
Opening Night/Press Night March 12, 2021

Beautiful, rich, vain, and irrepressibly witty, Emma has just discovered her newest “project” — finding a match for the sweet but modest Harriet Smith. But her best-laid plans are turned upside down when her subjects won’t cooperate. Kate Hamill’s newest Austen adaptation brings her upbeat, contemporary lens to this iconic romantic story of love’s confusion. A fresh, fast-paced take on Austen’s headstrong heroine, this screwball comedy packs a moving punch, with surprises aplenty.

·         From the acclaimed playwright of Bedlam’s Sense & Sensibility

·         “Hamill’s joyous, lovingly painted adaptations of cherished romances are everything fans of these novels could possibly hope for … She has proven herself a master of this craft.”

-TheaterPizazz

·         A co-production with Seattle Rep

THE BROTHERS SIZE

By Tarell Alvin McCraney
Directed by Chip Miller
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | April 17 – May 16, 2021
Opening Night/Press Night April 23, 2021

In the Louisiana bayou, big brother Ogun Size is hardworking and steady. Younger brother Oshoosi is just out of prison, aimless, and trying to belong. In this fierce and tender look at the complex bonds of brotherhood, McCraney weaves together rhythmically poetic language, music, and Yoruba cosmology to reveal the powerful connection between love and sacrifice.

·         From the Oscar-winning writer of Moonlight

·         New York Times Outstanding Playwright Award, 2009

·         “An absorbing and emotionally resonant drama.” -The New York Times

·         “The greatest piece of writing by an American playwright under 30 in a generation or more.” –Chicago Tribune

GIRLFRIEND

Book by Todd Almond
Music & Lyrics by Matthew Sweet
Directed by Marissa Wolf
On the U.S. Bank Main Stage | May 29 – June 27, 2021
Opening Night/Press Night June 4, 2021

A musical based on the 1991 hit alt-rock album “Girlfriend” by Matthew Sweet.

The landmark 90s rock album “Girlfriend” by Matthew Sweet sets the scene for the shimmering love story between two boys, fresh out of high school and seeking whatever comes next. Set in small-town Nebraska in 1993 — when mixtapes were the language of love and being openly gay was risky — Mike and Will experience the rush of first-time love, full of awkward, tender confusion and hopeful excitement.

·         “Sweet and thrilling … irresistible.” -The Hollywood Reporter

·         “An exhilarating joy.” -San Francisco Chronicle


PORTLAND CENTER STAGE AT THE ARMORY

Portland Center Stage at The Armory is the largest theater company in Portland and among the top 20 regional theaters in the country. Established in 1988 as a branch of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the company became independent in 1994, and is under the leadership of Artistic Director Marissa Wolf and Managing Director Cynthia Fuhrman. Around 160,000 visitors attend The Armory annually to enjoy a mix of classic, contemporary, and world premiere productions, along with a variety of high quality education and community programs. Ten productions are offered this season, in addition to hundreds of community events created to serve the diverse populations in the city. As part of its dedication to new play development, the company has produced 28 world premieres and presents an annual new works festival, JAW: A Playwrights Festival. Home to two theaters, The Armory (originally built in 1891) opened its doors in 2006 as the first building on the National Register of Historic Places, and the first performing arts venue in the country, to achieve a LEED Platinum rating.


THE SEASON SUPPORTERS

The 2020-2021 season is funded in part by Season Superstars Tim and Mary Boyle; Mary and Don Blair; and Umqua Bank. Further support comes from Season Sponsors Advance Gender Equity in the Arts; the Regional Arts and Culture Council; Oregon Arts Commission, a state agency funded by the state of Oregon and the National Endowment for the Arts; and The Mark Spencer Hotel.

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