Unrestricted support

Provide ongoing support for the Center for Classic Theatre, allowing Court to mount productions that reach across the University and into the community.

Annual funding supports Court’s three artistic pillars:

Classic theater

Revisiting and reimagining the classics.

Court Theatre strives to create innovative productions of classic plays that are thought provoking, character driven, and thematically enduring. Each season, through main stage productions and a wealth of audience enrichment activities, Court reexamines, reenvisions, and renews classic stories in order to illuminate timeless messages that possess the power to teach us about the human experience.

African American canon

An ongoing exploration of the African American canon of classic theater.

Under the leadership of artistic director Charles Newell and resident artist Ron OJ Parson, Court continues its commitment to exploring classic works of African American theater and literature. August Wilson’s Century Cycle remains a mainstay of this commitment, both on stage and in the classroom of Court’s partner schools, including past successes such as Seven Guitars (2014), Jitney (2013), Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (2009), and The Piano Lesson (2009). Court is also committed to exploring new adaptations of classic African American works and adding to the canon. Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man (2012) demonstrated the Center for Classic Theatre model, and the 2014–2015 season’s production of Richard Wright’s Native Son continued this commitment to bold new adaptations of classic African American works.

Musical theater underwriting

A continuing investigation into the special storytelling power of musical theater.

Over the past two decades, Court Theatre has established a reputation for excellent, intimate musical theater productions combining the acclaimed direction of artistic director Charles Newell with the music direction of Doug Peck. Past musical theater highlights include Porgy and Bess (2011), Caroline, or Change (2009), and Carousel (2008), among others. Greater unrestricted resources will enable Court to mount more of these large-scale and often expensive productions.