2011 – 2012 Season Press Release -

September 14, 2011



Featuring Parade, Elephant’s Graveyard and Romeo and Juliet in the Culbreth Theatre Troy is Burning and Vinegar Tom in the Helms Theatre.


CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – September 14, 2011 – The ageless battle between justice and injustice will be in the spotlight all year long, as the U.Va. Drama Department presents a dynamic new season that spans centuries and genres, and touches on issues ranging from the danger of prejudice to the power of love.


The 2011-2012 season will feature three productions at Culbreth Theatre and a pair of productions at the Helms, including one by U.Va. fourth-year student Matthew Minnicino.


The 2011-2012 Season:

  • The Tony Award-winning musical Parade 
  • Troy is Burning by Matthew Minnicino
  • Caryl Churchill’s Vinegar 
  • Tom George Brant’s Elephant’s Graveyard
  • William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet


Tom Bloom, Associate Professor and Chair of U.Va.’s Department of Drama says, “Many of the plays in this year’s season are connected by themes of justice and injustice. You have Parade, where you see how our justice system can be manipulated by prejudice and hysteria. Or the extremes we can go to by taking justice into our own hands in Elephant’s Graveyard. The injustices faced by women back in the 17th century are still present today in Vinegar Tom. Then you have a lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek look at the fables and foibles of war in Troy is Burning. And, of course, the unjust unraveling of romantic love in Romeo and Juliet.”


Full season subscription packages for 2011-2012 are $60 for adults, $35 for students, $55 for seniors and U.Va. faculty, staff and alumni association members.


Season subscriptions allow patrons the most flexible and inexpensive option for securing the seats and the nights they are looking for. Subscribers will receive priority access to seat reservations and fee-free ticket exchanges and replacements. In addition, returning subscribers will receive priority access to tickets and seats.


Subscriptions are now available online at www.artsboxoffice.virginia.edu, by calling 434-924-3376 or in-person from noon until 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday at the U.Va. Arts Box Office, located in the lobby of the Culbreth Theatre building.


Single tickets for all performances will go on sale Monday, September 19 and can also be ordered online, in person or by phone.


Single ticket prices for Troy is Burning, Vinegar Tom, Elephant’s Graveyard and Romeo and Juliet are $14 for adults, $12 for seniors and U.Va. faculty, staff and alumni association members and $8 for students.


Ticket prices for Parade are $16 for adults, $12 for seniors and U.Va. faculty, staff and alumni association members and $10 for students.


A $3.75 processing fee applies to all online and phone orders.


Parade is a Tony Award-winning musical by playwright Alfred Uhry (Driving Miss Daisy) and highly acclaimed contemporary composer Jason Robert Brown based on the true story of Leo Frank, a Jewish man convicted of murdering young factory worker Mary Phagan in 1913 Atlanta. It’s a gripping depiction of the mob mentality that demands someone to blame in the name of justice, contrasting the deadly power of prejudice with a love story packed with lessons that transcends eras.


Parade, directed by Robert Chapel, will be presented in the Culbreth Theatre from October 6-8 and 12-15 at 8:00 p.m.


U.Va. fourth-year playwright Matthew Minnicino transforms ancient Troy into the place that launched a thousand quips in Troy is Burning, a sharply satiric and thoroughly entertaining retelling of one of mythology’s longest and bloodiest conflicts. From the deadliest damsel of them all, Helen of Troy, to the hapless heroes who battled endlessly in her name, Minnicino creates a world where gods and generals collude and collide along a journey that challenges us to see love and war in new ways.


Troy is Burning, directed by Richard Warner, will be presented in the Helms Theatre from November 30-December 3 at 8:00 p.m. and December 3-4 at 2:00 p.m. In her acclaimed play Vinegar Tom, celebrated British playwright Caryl Churchill uses the backdrop of the 17th Century witch trials to highlight the ongoing struggles for acceptance and equality faced by women, even in our world today. Originally penned at the height of the women’s rights movement of the 1970′s, Churchill’s story and themes force us to examine our own roles in the discrimination we encounter, and even participate in, in our own lives.


Vinegar Tom, directed by John Vreeke, will be presented in the Helms Theatre from February 16-18 and 21-25, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.


Elephant’s Graveyard is a compelling tale of what happens when cultures collide around a tragedy that becomes truly larger than life. Based on history’s only recorded lynching of an elephant, the play takes a 360-degree look at what happened when a Tennessee town took justice in its own impulsive hands after a circus elephant killed one of its handlers there. Told through the words and memories of both exotic circus folk and everyday townspeople, the play offers an eye-opening look at the price of our thirst for spectacle. Part of the RecentWorks series, each performance will be accompanied by special discussions and events.


Elephant’s Graveyard, directed by Richard Warner, will be presented in the Culbreth Theatre from March 21-24, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.


Romeo and Juliet is still the greatest love story ever told, four hundred years after the Bard first put ink-dipped pen to paper. The tale of the forever first couple of stage, page and screen has as much to teach today as it did when it was first performed. From the bold power of love to the terrible spoils of war, it’s a story that will always capture hearts and tug at their strings with a power that just gets stronger with the generations.


Romeo and Juliet, directed by Brantley M. Dunaway, will be presented in the Culbreth Theatre from April 19-21 and 25-28, 2012 at 8:00 p.m. and April 29, 2012 at 2:00 p.m.


Free parking for all U.Va. Drama performances is available at the Culbreth Road Parking Garage, conveniently located alongside the theaters.