Heidelberg announces 2018-19 theater season

Heidelberg University’s School of Music and Theatre has announced the 2018-19 theater season, which is to include performances of two musicals and two plays.

The season is to have performances in the fall and spring. The theme for this year’s season is “Crisis of Faith.”

“The productions this year will focus on characters having a crisis in what they believe in,” Stephen Svoboda, Heidelberg School of Music and Theatre director and professor, said.

“The Music Man” is to kick off the season Sept. 20-23.

“For example, ‘The Music Man,’ it is about a town that is set in its ways and a con man comes in and helps to transform the town to help it move forward,” Svoboda said.

“The Music Man” follows a fast-talking traveling salesman, Harold Hill, as he cons the people of River City, Iowa, into buying instruments and uniforms for a boys’ band that he vows to organize — despite the fact he doesn’t know a trombone from a treble clef.

Also in the fall, the theater is to present an adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” Nov. 8-11.

There’s Macbeth, mighty general of Scotland, thane of Glamis, war hero. Lady Macbeth, Macbeth’s wife, cunning as a fox and as venomous as a viper. Their tale tells of the complexities of human nature. The telling is to be in a unique ’90s punk-inspired adaptation, Svoboda said.

The season is to continue with “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time” by Mark Haddon, Feb. 7-10.

The story is of 15-year-old Christopher who has an extraordinary brain; he is exceptionally intelligent, but ill-equipped to interpret everyday life due to his Asperger syndrome. When he falls under suspicion for killing his neighbor’s dog, he sets out to identify the true culprit, which leads to an earth-shattering discovery and a journey that will change his life forever.

“Mamma Mia!” is to conclude the season April 11-14.

The sunny and funny tale unfolds on a Greek island paradise as daughter is on a quest to discover the identity of her father. She brings three men from her mother’s past back to the island on the eve of her wedding.

Svoboda said last year, 5,000 community members attended the theater’s performances, and he hopes to continue that success.

“We want this to be the go-to theater,” he said.

Also, Svoboda said he will have 20 freshmen coming into Heidelberg as theater majors, bring the total up to nearly 40 students.

“We are very excited and we could not have achieved the level of success we did without the support of the community,” he said.

The School of Music and Theatre also is to perform “Macbeth” and “Mamma Mia!” for high school and middle school students.

Subscriptions to the season are to be offered again. For the next two months, Svoboda said, for faculty and staff of Heidelberg, subscriptions will be $30 for all four shows and $50 for general admission subscriptions. This offer also allows attendees to be able to chose the date of the show they wish to attend.

Sunday shows again are to include a “Talk Back” event prior to the show for the audience. This allows audience members to get a behind-the-scenes look at the production.

Prices for shows can be found at www.gundlach

theatre.org or by calling the box office at (419) 448-2305

The season also is to include the Playwright’s Festival April 28, with the performance of “The Penguin Tango” by Svoboda. The play also is to be taken across the Atlantic Ocean to its international premier at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August 2019.