Nashville Repertory Theatre brought its season-reveal party online yesterday, announcing the first of its 2020-21 productions on Facebook, Instagram and on the nonprofit’s website. Karen Sternberg — who destroyed us all as Blanche DuBois in February’s A Streetcar Named Desire — announced the first production: Next to Normal. The 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winning musical tells the story of a suburban mom coping with bipolar disorder. “Next to Normal does not, in other words, qualify as your standard feel-good musical,” wrote Ben Brantley in The New York Times in 2009. “Instead this portrait of a manic-depressive mother and the people she loves and damages is something much more: a feel-everything musical, which asks you, with operatic force, to discover the liberation in knowing where it hurts.” It is scheduled to run Sept. 12-27.
Today, local favorite Tamiko Robinson Steele announced the Rep’s second show, the classic 1985 play Fences by August Wilson. Over the past 35 years, some of the world’s most talented actors have suited up to play the Maxson family and their neighbors. Another Pulitzer Prize-winner, Fences tells the story of a Pittsburgh father struggling to provide for his family. His own dreams squashed by racism, Troy Maxson is a complex and dynamic character, and we all have something to learn from him. It's set to run Oct. 17-Nov. 1.
The Rep will continue to announce the 2020-21 season, its 36th installment, in the days to come. We’ll update you on the theater’s progress.
Elf, by Bob Martin, Chad Beguelin, Matthew Sklar and Thomas Meehan — Nov. 28-Dec. 27, 2020
School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play, by Jocelyn Bioh — Feb. 6-20, 2021
Primary User, by Nate Eppler — Feb. 6-20, 2021 (alternating performances with School Girls)
Ragtime, by Terrence McNally, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty — March 27-April 4, 2021