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USD Theatre Announces 2018-2019 Season

USD Theatre Announces the 2018-2019 Season Jackson Whitaker, Rachel Smith and Nick Akins (pictured from left to right) in the spring production of "Cabaret."

VERMILLION, SD – The University of South Dakota Department of Theatre presents a season full of comedy: romantic comedy, musical comedy and comedy in the face of tragic events. Season ticket packages are currently available for the four-show mainstage season in the Wayne S. Knutson Theatre.

The season begins with William Shakespeare’s comic gem "Love’s Labour’s Lost." Four young men dedicate themselves to scholarship and swear off the company of women, but the plan quickly goes awry when four young women arrive on the scene. Love is in the air as the men try to hold to their pledge. Audiences are sure to delight in one of Shakespeare’s wittiest and most romantic comedies. "Love’s Labour’s Lost" runs Sept. 21 – 30.

The fall semester concludes with the musical "Into the Woods." Take a trip to Once Upon a Time — when Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel and Jack and his beanstalk all lived in the same village. Inspired by Grimm’s Fairy Tales, this musical mashup takes us on the hilarious, heartfelt and occasionally gruesome journeys these folk characters make; then it explores what happens when they get what they think they wanted. With a Tony-winning score and script by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine, this musical will delight the entire family. "Into the Woods" runs Nov. 16 – Dec. 2.

In February, USD Theatre travels back to the Swinging Sixties with the farce "Boeing-Boeing." Handsome bachelor Bernard is footloose and fancy free as he juggles three fiancées simultaneously. All three are beautiful young airline stewardesses, and he has timed their visits so there is only one in his Paris home at a time. But his perfectly scheduled life runs amok when the new, faster Boeing jet plops all three women in his lap on the same night. Written by Marc Camoletti and translated from the French by Beverley Cross, this is one of the most popular comedies of the last fifty years. "Boeing-Boeing" runs Feb. 14 – 17.

The USD Theatre season closes with the groundbreaking musical "Spring Awakening." Hailed as a “once in a generation” musical by critics, this eight-time Tony-Award winning rock musical forever changed the Broadway landscape, and has electrified audiences over the world since its 2006 premiere. Written and composed by Duncan Sheik and Steven Slater, "Spring Awakening" explores the tumultuous journey from adolescence to adulthood. This show contains strong mature and sexual themes, and is not for children. "Spring Awakening" runs April 11 – 14.

These four diverse shows will be presented in the Wayne S. Knutson Theatre with evening performances at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Season tickets, which provide a 25 percent savings over standard ticket prices, are $45 for adults, $36 for senior citizens (62+), $30 for youth (k-12) and non-USD students and $15 for USD students with a valid ID. A form for ordering season tickets can be downloaded from the USD Theatre website or can be requested by calling 605.677.5400 or emailing us at

In addition to our four-show mainstage season, the Department of Theatre is excited to present three additional offerings. The intimate setting of the Arena Stage will be home to "These Shining Lives" by Melanie Marnich. Based on actual events, this hauntingly beautiful play tells the largely forgotten story of the “radium girls.” These women worked in factories during the early part of the twentieth century painting watch dials, only to later be diagnosed with severe radiation sickness. Instead of quietly accepting their situation, these women fought back and their court cases significantly improved workers’ rights and health standards. "These Shining Lives" runs Oct.18 – 21.

The spring semester will see the return of two popular recurring events in the USD Theatre season. First, the Arena Theatre will see the annual festival of One-Act Plays, each directed by graduate and advanced undergraduate directing students March 15 – 17. Then, the Dance program takes to the Knutson stage for a one-night-only Spring Dance Showcase. This biennial concert highlights the work of more than a dozen USD student choreographers. These students will practice their creative scholarship while collaborating with nearly fifty other student dancers, designers, technicians and musicians. The Spring Dance Showcase will be presented April 28. 


USD's College of Fine Arts encourages students to pursue their chosen professional field in art, music or theater through their study with nationally recognized faculty who are working professionals. Students learn and grow to be professional fine artists with great job potential anywhere in the country. The college offers opportunities for additional real-world experiences through work with guest artists, study tours abroad and opportunities at the National Music Museum and the University Art Galleries on the Vermillion campus and the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park. The college brings more than 80 guests artists to campus annually to work with students.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News