Theater and Dance Presents Bittersweet Chekhov Comedy

Kirby Theater transforms into pre-revolutionary Russia for 8 p.m. performances ThursdaySaturday and a Sunday matinee.

October 28, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

The Cherry Orchard
In Amherst's production of The Cherry Orchard, acting and
design work by students and faculty takes center stage.

In the early morning hours of a crisp spring day, at the turn of the 20th century, sunlight creeps across the branches of blossoming cherry trees in the orchard of the Ranevskaya family’s estate.

So begins Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, a four-act play about one family’s effort to save their home and celebrated orchard, presented by Amherst’s Theater and Dance department Thursday, Oct. 29, through Sunday, Nov. 1.

Original Play by Professor Wendy Woodson Connects Imagery, Memory and More

October 13, 2015
By Rachel Rogol


Ecology. Resistance fighters. A case study by Sigmund Freud. These are the underlying themes of Dora, an original performance about two people who meet and lose one another repeatedly against continually shifting landscapes of history and memory.

Written and performed by Wendy Woodson, Amherst's Roger C. Holden 1919 Professor of Theater and DanceDora simultaneously explores the relationship between its two characters and the many possible connections between images and human memory. "Dora is not a naturalistic or realistic play," Woodson says, "but rather a series of encounters."

Alumnus Returns for Powerful Performance Highlighting the Realities of Racism in America

September 21, 2015

The Lower Frequencies

Racial injustice. Social inequality. Black stereotypes. White privilege. These and other issues are at the heart of The Lower Frequencies, an original play written and performed by Amherst graduate Bryce Monroe '15 that is as captivating as its subject matter is difficult.

The show debuted at Amherst in April 2015, riveting students with its powerful and timely commentary on what it means to be a black man in America, and is back by popular demand for three nights only, Thursday, Sept. 24–Saturday, Sept. 26, at 7:30 p.m. in The Powerhouse.

Amherst’s Theater and Dance Season Kicks off with Shakespeare, Reimagined

September 7, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Photo by Scott Treadway

In the earliest years of the 17th century, Shakespeare wrote a little-known play called Pericles, Prince of Tyre. This Wednesday through Saturday, Sept. 9–12, Amherst’s Holden Experimental Theater transforms into Pericles’ world, complete with shipwrecks, assassins, pirates, romance and the heartbreaking story of a family torn apart.

Pericles, Prince of Tyre kicks off Amherst’s Theater and Dance 2015–16 season. Even if you’ve seen a production of Pericles before, chances are you haven’t seen it like this.

Amherst Professor Debuts New Opera During Free Workshop Performance


In 1960, nationally renowned literary critic and Smith College professor Newton Arvin was arrested and tried for possessing homosexual pornography. On Sunday, June 7, his story came to the Buckley Recital Hall stage in The Scarlet Professor, a new opera by composer Eric Sawyer, professor of music at Amherst, and librettist Harley Erdman, a theater professor at UMass Amherst.

Arts at Amherst Spring Festival, in Photos

Spring Arts Festival Celebrates the Arts on Campus

Spring Arts Festival 

A 1,000-year exposure camera created by an Amherst alum. The Amherst College Glee Club's sesquicentennial. Student and faculty collaborations across artistic disciplines. All this and more is celebrated at the Spring Arts Festival, taking place at various locations on campus Friday, April 10, through Sunday, April 19.

Senior Thesis Performance Highlights Racial Injustices

Bryce Monroe '15
Bryce Monroe '15 rehearses his senior thesis performance The Lower Frequecies.
See more photos on Flickr.

“This is me telling a story based on my experience as a young black man in America,” says Bryce Monroe '15 of his senior thesis performance in theater and dance. Titled The Lower Frequencies and inspired by Ralph Ellison’s 1952 novel Invisible Man, Monroe's one-man play aims to shed light on the realities of racism in America through a series of powerful, witty and tragic vignettes.

Senior Thesis: From Being Homeless to Graduating Amherst

March 4, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Graduation scene from "Destiny"Lola Fadulu ’17 rehearses a scene from Destiny. See more photos via Flickr.

Daejione Jones ’15 is writer and director of a one-act play titled Destiny, set at Amherst College. The play centers on an Amherst student named Destiny, who, when not on campus, experiences chronic homelessness and must live on the street.

Jones, a theater and dance major and pre-med student from Oakland, Calif., describes the character as “a cipher to the members of her community back home and at her new school.” Destiny is somewhat in limbo between two disparate worlds: the academic institution she attends and the underprivileged neighborhood she calls home. “She’s a member of both communities without being or feeling a part of either," says Jones. "For her hometown, she’s Amherst. For Amherst, she’s her hometown.”

Student Life Takes Center Stage in Thesis Play

February 20, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Grow Up
Four student actors embrace during a rehearsal for "Grow Up, Already!"

Living with roommates, choosing classes, forming new friendships, studying for exams—these are things you might expect to see in a play about student life in a college setting. But Grow Up, Already!—a senior honors project by Valerie Rodriguez ’15—dives deeper, tackling harder themes, including mental health, issues of identity, suicide and more.