Jake Beamer, Beth Tantanella & Cara McHugh rehearse Oedipus Rex: The Original Motherf***er.
Photo-The Bard’s Town


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Fast becoming an institution in the Louisville arts community, The Bard’s Town has announced the line-up for its 2015 season. To kick things off, they are playing host to an unorthodox play festival, the 1st Annual 24-Hour Play Festival!  January 16-17, 2015.

Here’s how it is supposed to work: 7 playwrights get a randomly-drawn play title, line of dialogue, and prop, all of which must be used in the produced play, at 6 PM Friday, January 16, and they have that night to craft their short play. In the morning, the directors and actors take over for a day of rehearsal. Saturday, January 17 at 7:30 PM, we perform!

Bard Theatre also is bringing back its 2014 Slant Culture Audience Award Winner, Oedipus Rex: The Original Motherf***er, for a 2-night run. January 23-24 at 10:30 PM.  The very adult production turns the classic drama into a raucous audience participation drinking game.

The main stage season begins February 19 with Daniel Pearle’s A Kid Like Jake.  From the original production at The Lincoln Center: “Alex and her husband, Greg, want only the best for their precocious four-year-old, Jake. When they apply to New York City private schools, part of what makes Jake special – his passion for Cinderella and dress-up – starts to cause concern. The story of a husband and wife trying to do right by their son.”  February 19-29.

April 16-26, Bard Theatre continues its mission of producing cutting-edge new works with William Missouri Downs’ Mad Gravity.  Winner of the Reva Shiner Comedy Award at The Bloomington Playwrights Project, Mad Gravity is the newest play from Downs (author of the hit from The Bard’s Town’s 2014 season, The Exit Interview.)

From Bloomington Playwrights Project: “Archie and Eudora have built a live studio audience in their living room. Being constantly observed helps them to lead an honest and honorable life. But things get awkward when some important visitors get a massive case of stage fright.  Then, when it’s announced that an asteroid may be heading cataclysmically towards the Earth, all social order breaks down and the honest and honorable life takes a backseat to a frenzied, panicked mayhem. Also, in Act II, you will learn the meaning of life.”

June 11-21, Bard Theatre presents Theresa Rebeck’s hit Broadway play, Seminar.  This production will be directed by Brian Walker, who worked extensively with Rebeck at Tennessee Repertory two years ago.

Four aspiring young novelists sign up for private writing classes with Leonard, an international literary figure. Under his recklessly brilliant and unorthodox instruction, some thrive and others flounder, alliances are made and broken, sex is used as a weapon and hearts are unmoored. The wordplay is not the only thing that turns vicious as innocence collides with experience in this biting comedy.

July 23-August 2, Bard Theatre brings the hit play Other Desert Cities, by Jon Robin Baitz, to Louisville.

Brooke Wyeth returns home to Palm Springs after a six year absence to celebrate Christmas with her parents, her brother, and her aunt. Brooke announces that she is about to publish a memoir dredging up a pivotal and tragic event in the family’s history – a wound they don’t want reopened.

Away from its home base, August 4, 6, and 7, The Bard Theatre will remount its production of Chasing Ophelia as part of KY Shakespeare’s “Shakespeare in the Park” Festival!

September 17-27, it’s the 5th annual Ten-Tucky Festival, a celebration of Kentucky playwrights: 7 ten-minute plays by 7 Kentucky playwrights.

October 15-25, Bard Theatre presents Crooked, by Catherine Trieschmann.

Fourteen-year old Laney arrives in Oxford, Mississippi with a twisted back, a mother in crisis and a burning desire to be writer. When she befriends Maribel Purdy, a fervent believer in the power of Jesus Christ to save her from the humiliations of high school, Laney embarks on a hilarious spiritual and sexual journey that challenges her mother’s secular worldview and threatens to tear their fragile relationship apart.

“The work of a big accomplished writer’s voice…a gem of a discovery.” – The New York Times

November 6-16, Bard Theatre presents Pulitzer Prize Finalist The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligenceby Madeleine George.

Watson: trusty sidekick to Sherlock Holmes; loyal engineer who built Bell’s first telephone; unstoppable super-computer that became reigning Jeopardy! champ; amiable techno-dweeb who, in the present day, is just looking for love. These four constant companions become one in this brilliantly witty, time-jumping, loving tribute (and cautionary tale) dedicated to the people—and machines—upon which we all depend.

“This is the best play I’ve come across since Sam Hunter’s A Bright New Boise.  And that’s saying something,” says Executive Artistic Director Doug Schutte.  “I’m beyond excited to get to bring this play to life here in Louisville.”

Closing out the season is the 5th year of the Bard’s smash hit, The Kings of Christmas, by Doug Schutte. As Schutte himself puts it, “It’s like A Christmas Carol…if Dickens were an idiot.”  December 10-22.