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Actors Theatre of Louisville’s new season promises drag, Dracula and women’s basketball

An image announcing the 2024-2025 season of Actors Theatre of Louisville
Courtesy
/
Actors Theatre of Louisville
Actors Theatre leadership said the season selections are meant to entertain, surprise and start conversations.

Celebrating 50 years as the State Theatre of Kentucky, Actors Theatre of Louisville's latest season includes new takes on classics, premiere work and local talent.

Spring is an exciting time in Louisville. Weeks before the Kentucky Derby, what the world knows as the city’s greatest event, is the kick-off to the Kentucky Derby Festival. But, weeks before that, local theater companies, concert halls, and event venues begin to reveal their upcoming seasons.

Actors Theatre of Louisville has debuted its 2024-2025 season, and it promises theatergoers a wide range of offerings while doubling down on themes of inclusion, diversity and community.

Announced productions include classics like Oscar Wilde's “The Importance of Being Earnest,” and “The Color Purple.” Actors will also present another production of “Dracula: A Feminist Revenge Fantasy,” and this year audiences will be introduced to “Flex,” a drama following a high school women’s basketball team.

Robert Barry Fleming, who leads Actors Theatre of Louisville.
Courtesy
/
Actors Theatre of Louisville
Executive Artistic Director Robert Barry Fleming said this season is embracing diversity and difference as a way to spark conversation.

Actors also announced a program that aspires to develop local talent who dream of taking to the stage. Through the New Voices program, students ages 14-19 will have a chance to collaborate with members of the New York-based, UNIVERSES ensemble, in a bilingual summer workshop, culminating in a public showcase in June.

Themes of inclusion and diversity were key to how Executive Artistic Director Robert Barry Fleming decided which plays to produce this season.

“We're living in a time throughout the world and throughout the community where the diversity of opinion, sometimes is pulling people in opposite directions,” Fleming said. “And (we really wanted) to find the way to pull us into one another, call each other in for solutions, for ways that we can continue to thrive and build community rather than devise or have a divisive kind of engagement."

Fleming is aware that some of the productions that include drag performers, may be challenging for some audience members—all the more reason to forge ahead.

An image from a recent ATL production of Jonathan Norton's, "I Am Delivered't"
Denisha McCauley
/
via Actors Theatre of Louisville
An image from a recent Actors Theatre production of Jonathan Norton's, "I Am Delivered't" from the 2023-2024 season.

“Some feel that our place is somewhat to ‘shut up and dribble,’ to just entertain,” Fleming said. “We want to go to the center of many of the challenges and existential questions that we might have about being human and being in community.”

Actors Theatre of Louisville’s 2024-2025 season tickets will go on sale on a rolling basis, starting April 23. Members will have first access to summer events.

2024-2025 Season

*Additional events will be added throughout the year

Won’t you be my May-bor?
World Premiere
Presented by Drag Daddy Productions

  • May 31 – June 8, 2024 in the Victor Jory Theater
  • June-Aug. 2024, a traveling show at various locations throughout Kentucky

A Juneteenth Celebration, UNIVERSES in Concert

  • June 19, 2024 in the Bingham Theater

New Voices
Featuring work by students ages 14-19 from the Bilingual Summer Intensive with UNIVERSES

  • June 29, 2024 in the Bingham Theater

Who Killed Alberta Jones?
World Premiere
Presented by Redline Performing Arts in partnership with the Parks Alliance of Louisville

  • July 13, 2024 at Alberta O. Jones Park
  • Aug. 8-10, 2024 in the Victor Jory Theater

Dracula: A Feminist Revenge Fantasy

  • Oct. 2-20, 2024 in the Bingham Theater

The Color Purple
Presented by Redline Performing Arts

  • Nov. 15-24, 2024 in the Pamela Brown Auditorium

A Hanukkah tale, to be announced

  • Dec. 11-22, 2024 in the Victor Jory Theater

The Importance of Being Earnest
Presented by Kentucky Shakespeare

  • Jan. 11-19, 2025 in the Pamela Brown Auditorium

Mrs. Krishnan’s Party
Presented by Indian Ink Theatre Company

  • Feb. 7-23, 2025 in the Victor Jory Theater

Flex

  • March 26-April 6, 2025 in the Bingham Theater

The After Show Show
Hosted by Dusty Ray Bottoms and May O’Nays

  • Dates to be announced throughout the 2024-2025 season, in the Victor Jory Theater

Editor's note: Actors Theatre of Louisville is among LPM's financial supporters.

This story has been updated with additional information.

William is LPM's "All Things Considered" host. Email William at wpadmore@lpm.org.