Niagara University Theatre announces its 52nd season

In Announcements, by , on September 8th, 2015

From October through May, Niagara University Theatre’s 52nd season of theatre productions promises an exhilarating assortment of entertainment options to suit a variety of tastes.

The entire season will be produced in the renovated William P. and Marie Leary Theatre in the Elizabeth Ann Clune Center for Theatre—with the one exception of our annual collaboration with the Castellani Art Museum.

From Oct. 1 – 5, Afflicted: Daughters of Salem by Laurie Brooks.  This powerful reimagining of the events leading to the infamous witch trials explores how girls have negotiated alliances and power throughout history just as they do today. Themes investigated are adolescent rebellion, as well as manipulation as a form of bullying.

An insightful exploration of the psychology underlying the crucible of events that shaped early American history, this exceptional family/school event offers insightful audience interaction following each performance.

Afflicted: Daughters of Salem will be on stage in the Leary Theatre within the Elizabeth Ann Clune Center for Theatre, Clet Hall, at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 1, and Mon. Oct. 5, and at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 2, and Saturday, Oct. 3, with 2 p.m. matinees on Saturday, Oct. 3, and Sunday, Oct. 4. 

From October 16 – 18, the NU Players will present an all student-designed and directed production of Extremities by William Mastrosimone, a searing play about assault and retaliation. How does one define retribution? And is it justice? This incredibly gripping drama focuses on an attempted physical attack and its aftermath, as the victim turns the tables on her attacker.  But how far is too far?

Caution: Viewing content is suitable only for playgoers 18 years and older.  Content (sexual assault, stage violence, graphic language) may be disturbing for some viewers.

Men and women square off in a volatile love match from Nov. 5 – 15 as NU Theatre presents The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare.  Young Bianca can have her pick of suitors, but not until her older sister Kate has been married off.  Unfortunately, the combative and outspoken Kate has earned a reputation as a real shrew, and no man wants anything to do with her.  Enter the dashing and confident Petruchio. See what happens when intimate negotiations become spectator sport.

You just can’t keep a good woman down, even in a man’s world. NU Theatre gives chauvinism in the workplace a real kick in the pants from Dec. 3 – 13 with 9 To 5: The Musical, by country superstar Dolly Parton and Patricia Resnick.

Pushed to the boiling point, three female co-workers concoct a plan to get even with their sexist, egotistical, two-faced, hypocritical bigot of an employer. Is giving the boss the boot even possible? And if so, how would these entrepreneurial women give their company a dream makeover?

Based on the hit 1979 motion picture, audiences are sure to revel in the notion of turnabout as fair play.

What’s there to do after the holiday season ends? From Jan. 22 – Jan. 30, NU Theatre’s annual Short Play Festival makes for a fascinating dose of theater – and a great entertainment bargain. Doug Zschiegner, associate professor/associate director of NU Theatre, will produce three cycles of ten-minute plays written by various playwrights that will be presented over two consecutive weekends. Comedies, dramas, and everything in between—our debut of student directors produces a smorgasbord of professionally published ten-minute plays.  If one production is not to your taste, you only have to wait ten minutes before the next one.  (With some plays, adult situations and language may be an appropriate warning to anticipate.)

From Feb. 18 – Feb. 21, in collaboration with the Castellani Art Museum, NU Theatre will present, The Maids by Jean Genet.

Two sisters, deeply resentful of their inferior social position, attempt to take revenge against society by destroying their employer.  Their secretive routine ultimately leads to unanticipated consequences. The Maids caused a scandal when it opened in Paris in 1947 for its stark portrayal of seething working class discontent.  Following the sisters as they weave through past and present, fiction and fantasy, their ritual becomes reality when they are confronted with the ultimate transgressions of despair, hatred and jealousy.

For the first time in 52 years of producing theatre, NU Theatre is thrilled to finally offer a work by Oscar Wilde. From March 31 – April 4, Niagara University Theatre will present Lady Windermere’s Fan.

Determined not to trust her husband when circumstances suggest he has been unfaithful, the winsome yet independent Lady Windermere resolves to leave him for another. But the true nature of her husband’s relationship with the “other woman” is very different from what the young bride assumes it to be.

Oscar Wilde’s clever gem was immediately welcomed as a delightful comedy in 1892 London’s West End.  Juxtaposing the comic and the serious, it is actually a thinly-veiled attack on the hypocrisy of manners and morals in late Victorian London.

From April 21 – May 1, NU Theatre tops off its 52nd season with a tongue-in-cheek production of The Drowsy Chaperone, the musical for musical lovers.

Winner of 5 TONY Awards (including Best Book and Best Original Score), The Drowsy Chaperone is a caricature of the Jazz age musical featuring multiple show stopping song-and-dance numbers, all while poking fun at the conventions and devices of musical theatre.

Your semi-recumbent tour guide will take you on an ecstatic excursion through his favorite musical, replete with lovers on the eve of their wedding, a bumbling best man, a desperate theatre producer, a rather dim hostess, two gangsters posing as pastry chefs, a misguided Don Juan and an inebriated chaperone.

On Saturday, April 30, the Friends of Niagara University Theatre will host the 31st Annual Friends of Niagara University Theatre Gala including a 4 p.m. production of The Drowsy Chaperone at the Leary Theatre within the Elizabeth Ann Clune Center for Theatre, Clet Hall, and a cocktail reception, dinner and silent and live auction at the Niagara Falls Country Club. Tickets for the gala are $150 per person or $175 per person (Gala patrons). For more information about the Gala, please contact Niagara University Theatre at (716) 286-8483.

During the summer of 2016, NU Theatre will once again present free children’s theatre for the community. Our N.U.R.T. (Niagara University Repertory Theatre) troupe will present a rotating repertoire of children’s stories during July and August. Suitable for children ages three through 10, the N.U.R.T. troupe will perform in the air-conditioned Leary Theatre within the Elizabeth Ann Clune Center for Theatre, Clet Hall, and in the Western New York community. In addition, NU Theatre will continue its tradition of presenting a free theatre-for-youth production. Locations, dates and times for performances will be announced in the spring. 

Ticket Information: There are three ways to purchase tickets for NU Theatre productions:

1)ONLINE:  We offer one of the lowest service fees online. Simply go to: to purchase your tickets, select your seat locations and print your tickets. Ticket packages make it simpler: you need only to input your personal information one time. Also, your preferred seat locations can be assigned to all ticket purchases (or the closest seats available). If you commit to a season subscription and order tickets for six productions, you will earn a 10 percent discount. If you order two or more productions during one transaction, you only have to input your personal information one time.

2) IN PERSON: Visit our box office in the lobby of the Elizabeth Ann Clune Center for Theatre, Clet Hall:   Monday-Friday 2:30-5:30 p.m. and one hour prior to curtain.

3) BOX OFFICE TELEPHONE AND EMAILPLEASE NOTE OUR NEW BOX OFFICE NUMBER! Call 716-286-8685 or send an e-mail to  Voicemail messages and emails are returned as soon as possible. 

Ticket prices for NU Theatre productions :

Plays & Readers’ Theater : $15 general admission for adults;  $10 for NU employees, NU alumni, Friends of NU Theatre, Seniors 62 and over; and Youth 21 and younger (non-NU)

Musicals: $20 general admission for adults; $15 for NU employees, NU alumni, Friends of NU Theatre, Seniors 62 and over; and Youth 21 and younger (non-NU) 

NU Players Present: $8 for all audience members (No Student Rush Available and NU Students Pay for Tickets) 

Tickets for NU StudentsNU Students with a valid NU ID are entitled to one ticket per main stage production and readers’ theater.

Student Rush Policy: Any non-NU student, 21 and younger, with a current student ID card, may be admitted free of charge when there are seats available. Such tickets will be distributed five minutes prior to curtain. To guarantee tickets, purchase a discounted Youth ticket for $10 – $15.