School of Theatre and Dance Announces 2014-2015 Season

Expanded season offers exciting selection of classic and new works

The School of Theatre and Dance at Kent State University announces its 2014-2015 season, including a Pulitzer Prize-winning play, the Kent Dance Ensemble’s 25th anniversary concert, and the premiere of a new musical.

The 2014-2015 season opens on Sun., Sept. 21 with a special concert presentation of Babes in Arms, produced through a partnership between Kent State, the Musical Theatre Project and the Beck Center for the Performing Arts. With music by Richard Rogers, lyrics by Lorenz Hart, book by Rodgers & Hart, and adaptation by John Guare, this classic is the original “hey, let’s put on a show!” musical. Babes in Arms is directed by professor Terri Kent.

The season continues Oct. 3-12 with the Roe Green Visiting Director Series presentation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning You Can’t Take It With You. Written by George S. Kaufmann and Moss Hart, You Can’t Take It With You demonstrates that one family’s eccentric chaos might just be the recipe for a happy life.

Kathleen Conlin, the 12th annual Roe Green Visiting Director, will direct the production. Conlin served for 22 seasons as associate artistic director and casting director for the Tony Award-winning Utah Shakespeare Festival where she also directed multiple productions.

Musical Hot Mikado, based on Gilbert & Sullivan’s “The Mikado” and directed by assistant professor Amy Fritsche, opens Oct. 24 and runs through Nov. 2. With book and lyrics adapted by David H. Bell and music adapted and arranged by Rob Bowman, musical comedy ensues in Hot Mikado as the heir to the Japanese throne runs away to join the orchestra and tries to maintain his hidden identity.

The diversity and versatility of faculty choreography will be celebrated during Dance ’14: In Flow, running Nov. 21 - 23. This annual dance concert is artistic directed by professor Andrea Shearer and features performances by dance majors and minors. 

Opening on Feb. 20 and running through March 1, the school will present the premiere full production of My Heart is the Drum. With concept and music by Phillip Palmer, book by Jennie Redling, lyrics by Stacey Lufting and directed by professor Terri Kent, this beautiful new musical follows a young African woman as she escapes an arranged marriage to pursue her lifelong dream of a university education.

A Writers Residency Grant from the National Alliance for Musical Theatre will help facilitate the production of My Heart is the Drum and allow the show’s creators to visit Kent State and further workshop the production.

Running concurrently with My Heart is the Drum, the school will present a special concert version of Bonnie & Clyde from Feb. 23-25. Professor Daniel R. Nadon will direct this infamous criminal love story, with music by Frank Wildhorn, lyrics Don Black and book by Ivan Menchell.

Associate professors Barbara Allegra Verlezza and Joan Meggitt will direct the B.F.A. Senior Dance Concert/Student Dance Festival from March 13-15. The annual concert will present choreography and performances from the dance program’s B.F.A. candidates and other student choreographers.

The Kent Dance Ensemble, artistic directed by associate professor Kimberly Karpanty, will celebrate a milestone April 2-4 when it presents Kent Dance Ensemble: 25 Years. The concert, marking the 25th anniversary of Kent State’s pre-professional dance company, will feature guest choreography by Tony Award-winner Garth Fagan and pieces from past seasons. 

The Student Theatre Festival, featuring student directed, produced and performed works, will take place April 10-12.

The 2014-2015 season will conclude with The House of Blue Leaves, opening April 17 and running through April 26. Written by John Guare and directed by associate professor Fabio Polanco, the production explores songwriter Artie Shaughnessy’s zoo-like life as he juggles his wife, mistress, professional dreams, and his son who is on his way to blow up the Pope at Yankee Stadium.

The school and its three theatre spaces are housed in the Kent State Center for the Performing Arts located at 1325 Theatre Drive, Kent, OH 44242.

Single tickets for all theatre and dance productions are $10 for non-KSU students (under 18) with valid ID, $16 for KSU faculty, staff, and Alumni Association members, $14 for seniors (60+) and $18 for adults. Tickets are available for groups of 10 or more for $12 per person.

Flex passes for three or four theatre and dance productions are also available for purchase. Prices for the flex passes range from $42 - $56 for Adults; $30 - $40 for seniors, KSU faculty, staff, and Alumni Association members; and $19.50 - $26 for non-KSU students with valid ID.

For tickets or more info rmation call the Performing Arts Box Office at 330-672-ARTS (2787). The Performing Arts Box Office, located in the Roe Green Center lobby of the Center for the Performing Arts, accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover, cash and personal checks.

The box office is open weekdays from 12 pm – 5 pm and one hour prior to each performance.

Unless otherwise noted, all Tues. through Sat. performances begin at 8 p.m. and Sun. performances begin at 2 p.m.

For more information, please visit


Media Contact:

Joni Koneval,, 330-672-0116

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014 04:34 PM
Updated: Saturday, March 25, 2023 10:55 PM
Joni Koneval