The New Jewish Theatre is pleased to announce its 2020-21 season, opening on October 15, 2020. From Neil Simon to Gloria Steinem, the upcoming season examines the idea of self and asks, “Where do I belong and to whom do, I belong?”

“I am thrilled to continue the great tradition of theatre at the J,” said Edward Coffield, Artistic Director. “I believe what we’ve selected will engage and excite the community.”

The highly acclaimed company will build on its current hit season (and 21 St. Louis Theatre Circle Award nominations) with four amazing plays and one incredible musical. The season opens with the funny and delightful Crossing Delancey. In December, the theatre presents Talley’s Folly by Missouri native and Pulitzer Prize winner, Lanford Wilson. Next, audiences will examine the work of women and the legacy of Gloria Steinem in Gloria: A Life by Emily Mann. In the spring, NJT delves into the passionate and engaging play by Anna Deavere Smith, Fires in the Mirror: Crown Heights, Brooklyn and Other Identities. The season concludes with Neil Simon and Marvin Hamlisch’s They’re Playing Our Song, a charming and romantic musical comedy featuring some of the greatest music written by the great Broadway legend.

“For the first time in our 24-year history, all five of our productions will be directed by women,” said Coffield. “I am pleased to welcome these engaging and creative artists to create work on our stage next season.”

Season subscriptions are $205.00 – $210. Subscription packages are available as either a classic five-show package or the very popular Flex Pass, which allocates six passes to be used at the patron’s discretion. Subscriptions go on sale starting May 13 with single tickets available in mid-August. Tickets may be purchased at the New Jewish Theatre Box Office, by phone at 314.442.3283 or online at newjewishtheatre.org

New Jewish Theatre

2020-21 New Jewish Theatre Season Information

Crossing Delancey by Susan Sadler
October 15 – November 1
Directed by Nancy Bell

Isabel is a modern young woman who lives alone and works in a book shop. When she is not pining after a handsome author, she is visiting her grandmother (Bubbe) in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. This irascible granny and her friend the matchmaker have found a “good catch” for Isabel. Her initial reluctance gives way to a blossoming romance when she finally meets Sam the pickle vendor, as the end of the play offers a new beginning.

Talley’s Folly by Lanford Wilson
December 3 – 20, 2020
Directed by Sarah Whitney

Talley’s Folly deals with the courtship of the young Sally Talley and her Jewish suitor, Matt Friedman.  Lanford Wilson is one of our most gifted playwrights, a dramatist who deals perceptively with definably American themes. He introduces us to two wonderful people, humanizing and warming them with the radiance of his abundant talent. It is perhaps the simplest, the most lyrical play Wilson has written – a funny, sweet, touching and marvelously written love poem for an apple and an orange.

Gloria: A Life by Emily Mann
January 21 – February 7, 2021
Directed by Ellie Schwetye

Gloria: A Life isn’t just a straightforward bioplay about Gloria Steinem. It’s a unique, deeply moving performance created in the hopeful, conversational spirit of its extraordinary subject – an act of looking back in order to look forward. In a way, Gloria isn’t just a life: It’s an acknowledgement and celebration of many lives: dozens of brilliant, tireless women whose years and years of work hold us all up. This remarkable play shares the journey and places it squarely into our world today. A stage experience that’s one part theater, one part consciousness-raising group therapy session. This theatre event is an intimate recollection of Steinem’s journey.

Fires in the Mirror: Crown Heights, Brooklyn and Other Identities by Anna Deavere Smith
April 8 – 25, 2021
Directed by Amelia Acosta Powell

Revolving around the Crown Heights riots that occurred after two killings in 1991, this play takes a searing look at the misunderstandings of, and sympathies between, two cultures living in the community of Crown Heights, Brooklyn, New York. Fires in the Mirror is, quite simply, the most compelling and sophisticated view of urban racial and class conflict that one could hope to encounter. A solo theatre piece of epic proportion.

They’re Playing our Song by Neil Simon
May 27 – June 13, 2021
Lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager and music by Marvin Hamlisch
Directed by Grace Austin

America’s premier funny man and the Tony Award-winning composer of A Chorus Line collaborated on this hit musical. They’re Playing Our Song is a funny, romantic show about an established composer and his relationship with a zany, aspiring young female lyricist. At work and at play, this is a winning couple whose professional and personal successes and difficulties lead to one hilarious scene after another. A great score and, of course, a happy ending.

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis is excited to introduce Amelia Acosta Powell as its new associate artistic director.Beginning on June 17, Acosta Powell will join The Rep’s new artistic leadership team headed by Augustin Family Artistic Director Hana S. Sharif.Acosta Powell most recently served as line producer at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, a Tony Award-winning organization that stands as one of the preeminent destinations for American regional theatre. Before that, she worked as the casting director and artistic associate at Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. A graduate of Georgetown University (where she dual-majored in theatre and Spanish), Acosta Powell’s wide-ranging artistic career includes producing and directing plays throughout the D.C. area.In 2017, American Theatre magazine named her as a rising star in the industry as part of its “Theatre Workers You Should Know” series.“Amelia is an extraordinary producer and a talented director that is a joyful addition to the artistic team,” Sharif said. “I look forward to collaborating with her in creating captivating theatre that captures the indomitable spirit of St. Louis.”“I’m very humbled and honored,” Acosta Powell said. “Hana is an inspiring and galvanizing leader who is both compassionate and persistent. It was an easy ‘yes’ when she offered me this role. The more that I’ve learned about the work at The Rep, the more excited I am to be a part of this organization and the city of St. Louis. It’s ripe with opportunity.” Acosta Powell will succeed Seth Gordon, The Rep’s associate artistic director of nine years, as he moves on to pursue new opportunities outside the organization.Acosta Powell says that she expects to spend much of her first year in St. Louis on a “listening tour,” learning more about the theatre and the city as she focuses on building The Rep’s outreach into the community. Her day-to-day work will include serving as a facilitator and liaison between The Rep’s artistic leadership, guest artists and staff.She’s most excited about the work that will happen on The Rep’s intimate stages.“What I love about theatre is being live in the room together,” Acosta Powell said. “I love to engage in the dialogue that happens when you’re at a play that doesn’t necessarily happen at a movie or other entertainment events. I love when the story that’s being told on stage is impacting the people in the room. Whether it’s loud laughter or groans of recognition at something cringeworthy, that kind of really visceral response is unique and thrilling.”One of Acosta Powell’s Oregon colleagues can’t wait to see what happens next in her career.“Amelia is a sophisticated artist, intrepid producer, and an exemplary leader who has had an extraordinary impact on the evolution of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival,” said Mica Cole, repertory producer at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. “Her appointment as associate artistic director of The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis makes me not only ecstatic for the future of The Rep, but for the seismic shift Hana and Amelia will undoubtedly bring to the field at large.”