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The Laboratory Theater of Florida announces 13th season

By Staff | Jun 7, 2021

As pandemic restrictions ease, The Laboratory Theater of Florida is excited to announce its 13th season. 

In the Lab Theater tradition of bringing new and thought-provoking theater to our area, the coming season features a world premiere and six southwest Florida premieres, including one that is different every performance by design. In addition to half-price preview nights, the theater will now offer special Thursday night discounts and expanded season pass options. The theater will continue to present its popular 24-Hour Screenwriting Project, staged readings, and more. 

 There remain opportunities to sponsor shows, advertise businesses, help refurbish a nearly 100-year old building, and to help rebuild the Actor’s Fund.  

 

Summer Season

“Sunset Schmoulevard,” adapted by Annette Trossbach (WORLD Premiere), opens June 11.

Norma Desmond is back and ready for her close-up with Mr. DeMille! The original screenplay has been revamped into an over-the-top parody that will leave you laughing all the way home. In the style of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane: A Parody of the Horror” and “Hush Up Sweet Charlotte,” this snarky take on the film noir classic, Sunset Boulevard, has all the fun and camp that audiences know and love from a June production at The Lab.

Adapted and directed by Annette Trossbach and workshopped by this tight-knit ensemble cast and crew, Sunset Schmoulevard is truly a Lab Theater original. This show features Sue Schaffel, Steven Coe, Greg Wojciechowski, Brian Linthicum, Daniel Sabiston, and Madelaine Weymouth.

Adult language, raunchy humor

Performance dates:

-June 11, 12, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26 at 8 p.m.

-June 13, 20, 270 at 2 p.m.

-July 1, 2, 3 at 8 p.m.

Special Events: 

-June 10 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview night.

-June 12 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

“Failure: A Love Story” by Philip Dawkins (SWFL premiere) is a limited engagement offering from July 29 through Aug. 8 only as part of the theater’s education program.

By the end of 1928, all three Fail sisters will be dead — expiring in reverse order, youngest to oldest, from a blunt object to the head, disappearance, and finally consumption. Tuneful songs and a whimsical chorus follow the story of Nelly, Jenny June, and Gerty as they live out their lives above the family clock repair shop near the Chicago River before their time unexpectedly runs out. A magical, musical fable where, in the end, the power of love is far greater than any individual’s successes or failures.

Performance dates:

-July 29, 30, 31 at 8 p.m.

-Aug. 5, 6, 7 at 2 p.m.

-Aug. 1, 8 at 2 p.m.

The theater thanks the Lee County School District for generously providing scholarships for students involved in this production.

Regular Season

“The Color Purple” by Marsha Norman, Brenda Russell, Allee Willis, Stephen Bray (SWFL Premiere) opens Sept. 3.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker is the tale of African-American women finding their independence in the first half of the 20th century.

With powerful songs, audiences will join their journey of heart-touching deliverance.

“…a spiritually transcendent theatricalization of the tale that had me silently shouting ‘hallelujah’ and ‘amen.'” – L.A. Times.

Mature themes

“The Color Purple” is generously sponsored by Emily Eason.

Performance dates:

-Sept. 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, 30 at 8 p.m.

-Sept. 5, 12, 19, 26 at 2 p.m.

-Oct. 1, 2  at 8 p.m.

Special Events: 

-Sept. 1. 2 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview nights

-Sept. 4 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

-Sept. 5 – Community Talkback immediately following the performance.

∫ 24-Hour Screenwriting Project — Oct. 9

All the fun of our 24-Hour Playwriting project – with the added component of video! Selected screenwriters will be assigned a theme, a director, a videographer, and actors. Within just twenty-four hours, you will see the fruits of their labor when we present all of their 10-minute movies to be judged by a panel of area theater and arts professionals. There will be a limited number of in-person tickets to this event, accompanied by virtual passes. A hugely popular event!

“White Rabbit Red Rabbit” by Nassim Soleimanpour (SWFL Premiere) opens on Oct. 14.

With no rehearsal, no director, a different actor each night, and a script waiting in a sealed envelope on stage, this show is a theatrical experience that reminds us of the transformative power of theater.

 “…a playful, enigmatic, and haunting show.” – The New York Times.

-Oct. 14 – 8 p.m. – Dave Yudowitz

-Oct. 15 – 8 p.m. -Eric Raddatz

-Oct. 16 – 2 p.m. – Melanie Payne

-Oct. 16 – 8 p.m. – PJ McCready

-Oct. 17 – 2 p.m. – Randall Kenneth Jones

-Oct. 21 – 8 p.m. – Stephanie Davis

-Oct. 22 – 8 p.m. – Lucy Sundby

-Oct. 23 – 2 p.m. – Sonya McCarter

-Oct. 23 – 8 p.m. – Ella Nayor 

“White Rabbit Red Rabbit” is generously sponsored by Dave Yudowitz.

Performance dates:

-Oct. 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23 at 8 p.m.

-Oct. 16, 17, 23 at 2 p.m.

“The Tempest” by William Shakespeare plays from Nov. 5-20.

Shakespeare’s classic comedy about betrayal and family will lead you on a magical journey. Trapped on an island by a jealous sibling and aided by various spirits, our heroes find revenge complicated. Co-Directed by Artistic Director Annette Trossbach and director Nykkie Rizley. 

Performance dates:

-Nov.  5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20 at 8 p.m.

-Nov. 7, 14 at 2 p.m.

Special Events: 

-Nov. 3, 4 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview nights

-Nov. 6 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

-Nov. 7 – Community Talkback immediately following the performance.

“The Complete History of America (abridged)” by Adam Long, Reed Martin, Austin Tichenor (SWFL Premiere) plays Dec. 3 through 19.

600 years of history in 6000 seconds … history will never be the same! This fast-paced comedy is American History on speed, giving us a 90-minute roller coaster ride to remind us that it’s not the length of your history that matters – it’s what you’ve done with it!

“The Complete History of America (abridged)” is generously sponsored by Arlene Foreman.

Performance dates:

-Dec. 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18 at 8 p.m.

-Dec.5, 12, 18, 19 at 2 p.m.

Special Events: 

-Dec. 1, 2 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview nights

-Dec. 4 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

“Killer Joe” by Tracy Letts (SWFL Premiere) plays Jan. 14 through Feb. 5.

This dark comedy follows a dysfunctional Texas family that hires a hitman to kill a relative with a sizable life insurance policy. 

“It’s slick; it’s well constructed, it knows exactly where it’s going.” – New York Daily News.

Performance dates:

-Jan. 14, 15, 20, 21, 22, 27, 28, 29 at 8 p.m.

-Jan. 16, 23, 30 at 2 p.m.

-Feb.  3, 4, 5 at 8 p.m.

Special Events: 

-Jan. 12, 13 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview nights

-Jan. 15 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

“Avenue Q” Music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, book by Jeff Whitty  (SWFL Premiere), runs Feb. 25 through March 27. Winner of the 2004 Tonys for Best Book, Best Score, and Best Musical!

Featuring puppets and human actors, this is a laugh-out-loud musical that tells the story of recent college graduate Princeton as he struggles to find his purpose. Though inspired by Sesame Street, these are R-rated puppets with warnings for adult language and situations.

Mature themes

“Avenue Q” is generously sponsored by The Bireley Family Foundation.

Performance dates:

-Feb. 25, 26 at 8 p.m.

-Feb. 27 at 2 p.m.

-March 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26 at 8 p.m.

-March 6, 13, 20, 27 at 2 p.m.

Special Events: 

-Feb. 23, 24 at 8 p.m. – Half-price preview nights

-Feb. 26 at 8 p.m. – Teens get a free ticket to the performance and a meet and greet with the cast (reservations required)

-Feb. 27 – Community Talkback immediately following the performance.

“Les Liaisons Dangereuses” by Christopher Hampton, April 15 through May 7

Using sex as a weapon, this is a tale of seduction set among aristocrats before the French Revolution. This classic drama explores decadent sexuality, morals, and manipulations played as the ultimate game with tragic results.

“…Hampton’s play is sensual, oddly naughty and totally, impassively immoral.” – New York Post.

Performance Dates:

-April 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30 at 8 p.m.

-April 17, 24 at 2 p.m.

-May 5, 6, 7 at 8 p.m.

-May 1 at 2 p.m.

The performance subscription packages are:

Preview subscription  $85.00 – (Sept. 2021 – May 2022) – includes mainstage show preview nights on Wednesday and Thursday before opening; no special events included.

Thursday Night Pass $230.00 (June 2021 – Many 2022) – includes any Thursday night performances and all special events. 

Year-Round Pass Weekend (June 2021 – May 2022) $280 – includes all shows and special events.

Flex Pass 5 seats (June 2021 – May 2022) $150 – 5 seats anytime/anywhere you want them!

Flex Pass 10 seats (June 2021 – May 2022) $300 – 10 seats anytime/anywhere you want them!

Individual ticket prices are $30 for adults and $10 for students for non-musical performances) and $37 for adults and $15 for students for musicals. Thursday night tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for students. Group discounts are available for parties of 10 or more, reserved in advance. 

Please note that with ANY ticket purchase (subscription or individual sale), check-in MUST occur prior to 5 minutes to curtain, or seats will become available for sale to others.