Theatre and Dance at Wayne Reinvents 2020-2021 Season for the Digital World

For Immediate Release  
Contact: Thomas Karr, Director of Marketing & Audience Engagement
Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance
College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts
Wayne State University
4841 Cass Avenue, Suite 3206 Detroit, MI 48202
(313) 577-7895 or

Theatre and Dance at Wayne Reinvents 2020-2021 Season for the Digital World

DETROIT – Theatre and Dance at Wayne, the producing entity of the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance at Wayne State University, announces its revised 2020-2021 season with three signature series, each delivered digitally to audiences around the globe.

Theatres around the country have closed their doors in response to the ongoing pandemic and restrictions set in place by medical and government officials. Theatre and Dance at Wayne is no exception. The previously announced season had planned to feature Richard O’Brien’s “The Rocky Horror Show,” Tracey Letts’ “Superior Donuts,” Katori Hall’s “Our Lady of Kibeho,” the Spring Dance Concert, and more.

Pivoting to digital programming, the new season consists of three signature series.

The Productions Series is where audiences will enjoy streaming and recorded performances, similar to what they might experience when attending in-person at the theatre. The department will produce several experiences as part of the Production Series, including a premiere of work by acclaimed playwright, Garlia Cornelia, titled “Pingree’s Past.” Additional productions include Naomi Iizuka’s “Anon(ymous),” an entrancing adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey; “Healing Through Dance and Drum,” a dance performance that looks through the lens of African Diasporic drum and dance; “Shakespeare Sings!,” a collaboration with guest artist and musical theatre composer Scotty Arnold in which MFA Acting students perform songs inspired by the rich and lyrical words of William Shakespeare, reimagined for today’s audience; “Unveiling the Mask,” a project about personal identity guided by Billicia Charnelle Hines, in which students develop intimate portraits of themselves through the lens of their culture, history, and personal experience; “Trivøya Gold,” a musical, with book and lyrics by Alana Jacoby and book and music by Scotty Arnold, which explores death, nationalism, and Olympic Curling; and Onsite/Insight, a virtual dance festival that is the culminating event and screening of dance films. Possible pop-up screening sites and large-scale projections as part of festival; plus, more to come. Anyone can attend these digital performances for free but a suggested $10 ticket helps the program maintain the high quality that audiences have come to expect.

The Dialogues Series is a free program designed to foster connections and facilitate understanding among our global community. This series features the new Reading Circle, a virtual book club that engages members in conversations centered around selected works of literature with a goal of deepening the connection between the performing arts and civic engagement. The Reading Circle will help us build more diverse and inclusive audience relationships, ensuring that our artistic programming speaks to our community. The Dialogues Series also features Movement Matters: Friday Dance Symposium, led by Dr. RAS Mikey Courtney, where guest artists, faculty, and students share research and the creative work they’re pursuing. Additionally, the series includes the Apple Discussion Series, inspired by the The Apple Award, a program funded by the Nederlander family and named for family matriarch, Sarah Applebaum Nederlander. This evolution of the Apple Award program will feature ten or more online experiences where audiences will hear from actors, designers, managers, producers, and more from the American theatre — including Broadway talents. Also new is the department’s first podcast called “Five Minutes to Places.” The podcast, produced and hosted by Master of Fine Arts students in Theatre Management, takes a deep dive into current issues in the performing arts industry, explore topics and themes related to productions, and invites the audience inside the creative process. Rounding out the Dialogues Series is a new vlog hosted by Devon Redmond, in which he interviews local theatre and dance artists and leaders, exploring the rich cultural opportunities available in metro-Detroit.

The third series, Studio Hours, is also a free program that explores the process of creating artistic works for the stage (or screen). This series will feature design labs, workshops, demonstrations, skill shares, and programming introducing guest artists.

The Dialogues and Studio Hours Series will be shared online through the department’s social media channels, including Facebook, YouTube, and via listeners’ preferred podcast apps. The Production Series will be shared via the department’s ticketing service with hosting on Vimeo.

The revised 2020-2021 season will launch on Thursday, Sept. 17 in alignment with Wayne State University’s Giving Day ( The launch includes the premiere episode of the podcast, a preview of Devon Redmond’s vlog series, and a sneak peek at several productions planned for online viewing.

Tickets for the Production Series and information on each program are available for purchase online at A new $50 membership program offers audiences more than 50 percent off the regular ticket price and access to all paid experiences. Those looking to learn more about the digital season or who wish to become members can learn more at Dates, titles, and content are subject to change.

About Theatre and Dance at Wayne
Theatre and Dance at Wayne is the producing entity of the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance in the College of Fine, Performing, and Communication Arts at Wayne State University. The department offers undergraduate and graduate programs in theatre and dance, including a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre; Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre with an emphasis in either Performance, Design and Technology, or Stage Management; Bachelor of Science in Dance; Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance; Master of Fine Arts in Acting, Set Design, Costume Design, Lighting Design, Stage Management, and Theatre Management; Master of Arts in Theatre & Dance with an emphasis in Teaching Artistry; and a Master of Arts in Arts Administration. Minors are available in Africana Theatre and Dance; Theatre Design and Technology, Theatre, Theatre Management, Dance, Community and Studio Dance. Additional information on academic programs can be found at

About the Wayne State University
Wayne State University is one of the nation’s preeminent public research universities in an urban setting. Through its multidisciplinary approach to research and education, and its ongoing collaboration with government, industry and other institutions, the university seeks to enhance economic growth and improve the quality of life in the city of Detroit, state of Michigan and throughout the world. For more information about research at Wayne State University, visit

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