Weekender: Theatre Festival Tonight Through Friday, Workshop Saturday

Scream, 2007, oil on canvas, Irving Marcus, Collection of the artist. Photo copyright Benjamin Blackwell. Art by Irving Marcus and UC Davis Alum Bruce Nauman will be on view beginning in two weeks at the Manetti Shrem Museum of Art.

So many events start today that we moved up the Weekender a day to Wednesday this week, instead of Thursday. Have a great rest of your week and weekend.

By Michael G. French, Arts Marketing Specialist, College of Letters & Science

Giving life to new works for the stage, the Ground & Field Theatre Festival at UC Davis begins its second season with a free series of readings called “Off the Page.” The three-night event, Sept. 12-14, features a different play reading each evening. The readings are at 7 p.m., at 207 E Street, Davis. Though free, online reservations are recommended and can be made at groundandfield.com.

Presented in conjunction with the UC Davis Department of Theatre and Dance and the Theatre and Dance Ensemble, GFTF provides a venue for the development of new theatrical works and emerging voices in theatre.

"Off the Page” begins on Wednesday with a reading of “Light Delay” by Jessica Andrewartha and directed by JR Yancher, artistic director of Bike City Theatre Company in Davis. The science fiction drama tells the story both of humanity’s last chance to spread into the universe and the consequences it has for those left on Earth.

“[un] Earthed” by Lavinia Roberts and directed by Joseph Schupbach, graduate student and co-founder and associate artistic director of InGen Productions, will be presented on Sept. 13. The play revolves around a father and daughter who are in an alien refugee camp after the destruction of Earth. The daughter, who attends school along with other refugees, encounters the mathematical language of an alien society.

Theatre readers
Josh Hazeghazam and Ryan Gerberding in Ground and Field Theatre Festival Reading, 2017. (Photo/Tom Burmester)

“A Punchline” by Michael Schwartz closes out the series on Sept. 14. Directed by Mindy Cooper, Broadway veteran and professor of theatre and dance, the dark comedy centers on Leah, a Holocaust survivor, who has moved to Hollywood and created a popular television series featuring “funny Nazis” – that many find offensive. 

“GFTF is very excited with this year’s’ crop of new works,” said Cooper. “We have chosen new pieces submitted by authors from all over the country, with an interesting through-line of what we are calling History and Future History. Unique voices exploring unique and vibrant ideas.” 

Tom Burmester, GFTF co-founder, offers a pre-show talk each night at 6:30 p.m. on “A Crucial Stage,” which addresses sustainable theatre and climate change.

The Ground & Field Theatre Festival, the Arts at UC Davis, and the Theatre and Dance Ensemble are members of Arts Alliance Davis. Support for this program has been provided by City of Davis Arts, Culture, & Innovation Funding.

The UC Davis Department of Theatre and Dance is housed in the College of Letters and Science. For more information about additional performances, visit the department's web site. 

Additionally, on Saturday at UC Davis, GFTF will demonstrate a new play that incorporates live motion capture animation. The event also includes a demo of a video game that enables virtual design and performance of scenes from Shakespeare.

The event takes place on Sept. 15 in the Wyatt Pavilion Theatre on Old Davis Road and is free and open to all ages. More information is here

Also Tonight: "As You Like It" cast members at Avid Reader, Davis

"As You Like It" cast members will perform excerpts and songs from the play while Davis Poet Laureate Dr. Andy Jones guides a discussion and question-answer period. Go here for more details. 

Save the Date: Manetti Shrem Fall Exhibition Opens in Two Weeks

The Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art at the University of California, Davis, will open its fall 2018-19 season with two new exhibitions, Bruce Nauman: Blue and Yellow Corridor on view Sept. 27 – Dec. 16, and Irving Marcus: Romance & Disaster, A Retrospective Sept. 27 – Dec. 30.

The fall season opening celebration takes place on Thursday, Sept. 27, at 4:30 p.m. and is highlighted by a curators’ talk at 5:30 p.m. featuring Museum Founding Director and Marcus exhibition curator Rachel Teagle and Nauman guest curator Ted Mann. More here

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