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American Players Theatre cancels season; announces play-reading series

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American Players Theatre, APT, file photo

SPRING GREEN (WKOW) -- American Players Theatre has announced the cancellation of its 2020 summer season and will move the 2020 productions to the 2021 season.

The theater hopes to be able to produce plays in some fashion this fall if restrictions on public gatherings are lifted, and leadership deems the situation safe for patrons and company, according to a news release.

“75% of our operating budget comes from earned income, and with no audiences in 2020, the financial hit to APT is simply unprecedented," said Managing Director Carrie Van Hallgren.

Ticketholders have several options.
• They can choose to donate the full or partial value of their ticket back to the theater. Donations will be matched up to $750,000.
• They can keep the value of their tickets on their account for use when the theater re-opens.
• They can receive a refund.

All ticketholders will be contacted by APT with more information., and can find answers to frequently asked questions at

In the meantime, APT has announced a new play-reading series: Out of the Woods, play readings performed and recorded live.

APT’s Core Acting Company, along with other APT actors, will be reading a selection of plays using Zoom virtual meeting software. The readings are streamed live and recorded by PBS Wisconsin.

Play readings will be posted on Fridays at 7 PM CT on their website:

They will be free to view, and available for a limited time.

June 5
Chekhov One Acts
By Anton Chekhov. Directed by Aaron Posner.

Three stories about the complexities of love and life; marriage and moving on. These one-act plays were produced at APT in 1985 and 1986.
The Bear featuring Tracy Michelle Arnold (Popova), Brian Mani (Smirnov), James Ridge (Luka). On the Harmfulness of Tobacco, featuring David Daniel (Nyukhin). The Proposal, Sarah Day (Chubukov), Colleen Madden (Natalya Stepanova), Marcus Truschinski (Lomov).

June 12
As You Like It
By William Shakespeare. Directed by John Langs.

A quite-nearly-perfect Shakespearean comedy, featuring one of his greatest heroines. As sure as anything to make you feel like you're at home in our woods for an evening. Featuring: Tracy Michelle Arnold (Jaques), Kelsey Brennan (Phoebe), Nate Burger (Orlando), David Daniel (Touchstone),
Sarah Day (Madame Le Beau/Reverend Olive Martext), Jim DeVita (Charles/William), Alys Dickerson (Celia), Tim Gittings (Corin/Jaques de Boys),Gavin Lawrence (Silvius), Colleen Madden (Audrey),
Brian Mani (Duke Frederick/Duke Senior), Melisa Pereyra (Rosalind), James Ridge (Adam/Hymen), Marcus Truschinski (Oliver/Amiens).

June 19
Arms and The Man
By George Bernard Shaw. Directed by William Brown.

Love and war collide in a uniquely Shavian fashion when an “enemy” soldier climbs in through the idealistic Raina’s window, throwing her life and worldview into disarray. Featuring: Kelsey Brennan
(Louka), Nate Burger (Bluntschli), David Daniel (Russian Officer) Sarah Day (Catherine), Tim Gittings (Nicola), Melisa Pereyra (Raina), James Ridge (Petkoff), Marcus Truschinski (Sergius).

June 26
Julius Caesar
By William Shakespeare. Directed by Stephen Brown-Fried.

Growing unease over Caesar's popularity spreads through Rome, spurring good people to do terrible deeds. A riveting political thriller about blood spilled in the name of the republic, and hands that hold the blades.
Featuring: Tracy Michelle Arnold (Cassius), Kelsey Brennan (Marulius/Metellus/Titinius), Nate Burger (Flavius/Trebonius/Pindarus), David Daniel (Carpenter/Decius/Lucillius), Sarah Day (Casca/Dardanius), Jim DeVita (Brutus), Tim Gittings (Cinna/Caesar’s servant/Messala), Gavin
Lawrence (Antony), Colleen Madden (Soothsayer/Portia/Cinna the Poet, Volumnius), Brian Mani (Julius Caesar/Poet), Melisa Pereyra (Calphurnia/Octavis’ Servant/Clitus), James Ridge
(Cicero/Ligarius/Lepidus), Marcus Truschinski (Cobbler/Artemidorus/Octavius).

July 3
Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been…
By Carlyle Brown. Directed by David Daniel.

Writer and activist Langston Hughes faces down his fears by writing a poem on the eve of his appearance before the Senate Permanent-Sub-Committee on Investigations on Un-American Activities.
Featuring: Jim DeVita (Senator Dirksen), Jamal James (Frank Reeve), Gavin Lawrence (Langston Hughes), Brian Mani (Senator McCarthy), James Ridge (Roy Cohn), Marcus Truschinski (David Schine).

July 10
An Improbable Fiction
By James DeVita. Directed by Tim Ocel.

A world-premiere reading of James DeVita's new play, told largely in Shakespeare's own words. It's plague time, and Shakespeare's characters are out of sorts (and out of work). Several of our favorites reunite at The Boar's Head Tavern to celebrate life, and ruminate on the state of the world.
Featuring: Brian Mani (Falstaff), Sarah Day (Mistress Quickly). Also featuring Tracy Michelle Arnold, Nate Burger, Gavin Lawrence, Melisa Pereyra.

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