ALBANY (Oct 31)-While still celebrating their most successful season yet, Harbinger Theatre has announced an ambitious season of Capital Region Premieres and rarely seen or available plays by four playwrights yet to be produced by the company in four different venues throughout the Capital Region with two new directors joining the company fulfilling Harbinger’s mission of creating opportunities for all who are interested in change.
The four plays are “In the Blood” by Suzan-Lori Parks, directed by TJ Collins at St. Rose Theatre running 3/15-3/24, “The Squirrels” by Robert Askins, directed by Patrick White at Sand Lake Center for the Arts running 6/21-6/30, “Maggie May” by Frances Poet, directed by Chris Foster at Albany Civic Theater running 9/6-9/22 and “Into the Breeches!” by George Brant, directed by Lauren D’Annibale at Albany Barn running 11/7-11/16.
“In the Blood” is an acclaimed play by Suzan-Lori Parks (Pulitzer Prize Winner for “Topdog/Underdog”) which reflects on “The Scarlet Letter” as it tells the story of Hester a single mother of five who lives under a bridge and who struggles to care for her family. Her struggle to keep them happy versus the adults that make up her community takes its toll especially as her sacrifices build higher than her hopes allow. Five actors play both her children and the forces in society opposed to her. “There ain’t a soul out there that has walked but hasn’t stumbled.”
“The Squirrels” is another wild comedy by Robert Askins (“Hand to God”) which sees Scurius, the patriarch of a family of gray squirrels, who has collected enough nuts to last ten winters. When a group of starving fox squirrels begs him to share his hoard of food, animosity erupts into a ferocious war. “The Squirrels” is a Capital Region Premiere and a boundary-pushing, darkly satirical look at wealth inequality in which no creature comes out unscathed.
The United States Premiere of “Maggie May” by Frances Poet is an extraordinary drama about an ordinary family who must balance the challenges of daily life whilst living with dementia. Maggie and Gordon met 6o years ago dancing and singing to Rod Stewart songs and now the songs are sometimes all she can remember.
The Stage said, “A glorious piece of theatre; a funny, furious and moving exploration of how dementia affects families… Frances Poet’s words dance from page to stage, her prose is visceral, precious and considered.”
“Into the Breeches!” by George Brant tells the WWII story of Oberon Play House’s director and leading men who are off at war with the Axis. Determined to press on, the director’s wife sets out to produce an all-female version of “Henry V,” assembling an increasingly unexpected team united in desire, if not actual theater experience. Together they deliver a delightful celebration of collaboration and persistence when the show must go on! “Entertainingly captures the true meaning of being an American, Delightful and thoroughly entertaining.”-St. Louis-Dispatch.
Harbinger is also offering a Flex Subscription for the first time. Four tickets to any show are available for $50!! Use them all for a party to see one show or treat yourself to four plays you’ve never seen before for perhaps the lowest price you’ve paid in years for live theater!
$50 Flex Subscriptions are available by emailing email@example.com or making a VenMo payment to @HarbingerTheatre
Harbinger is thrilled with the slate of shows we’ve come up with. Starting in January of this year, over a dozen company members read all 20 final nominees and struggled to discard plays in the final stages. “We hope everyone enjoys the plays as much as we enjoyed selecting them!” Lisa Bryk said and Debby Bercier offered “I will personally and happily refund anyone who doesn’t have a great time attending Harbinger’s ’24 Season.” Play Reading Committee chair Susan Katz proudly claimed “I think the committee did a great job, and worked together extremely well. I really enjoyed the process, and look forward to next year’s committee working together to put together another strong season.”
Harbinger closes out their 2023 season with “Mrs. Packard” by Emily Mann, directed by Chris Foster running 12/7-12/16 at Albany Barn with a FREE Preview 12/6. $15 tickets available on Eventbrite or by cash or VenMo at the door. Press Release with photos planned for 11/15.
Poster by Marc Christopher