2011 - 2012 at BFT

That Championship Season

September 15-October 1, 2011
Directed by Jonathan Goldstein

Holy Ghosts

March 1-17, 2012
Directed by Bethe Ensey


November 3-19, 2011
Directed by Sandra Taylor

Hay Fever

April 19-May 5, 2012
Directed by Ellise Mayor

Becky Shaw

January 12-28, 2012
Directed by Mel Christian

The Last Hotel for Women

June 14-30, 2012
Directed by Edward C. Miller

September 15-October 1, 2011
Written by Jason Miller
Directed by Jonathan Goldstein

Five men who won the Pennsylvania state high school basketball championship 20 years ago get together for a reunion at the coach's house. It begins as a happy occasion, but the tensions among them have grown over time. What's happened to the "dream team" after all these years? Who's to blame for the way their lives have turned out? Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Tony Award for Best Play in 1973, this play was originally brought to the BFT stage in 1979 to great acclaim.

Kevin Van Hyning as Tom Daley
David Seale as George Sikowski
Shawn Reese as James Daley
Brian Webber as Phil Romano
Edward Miller as Coach

September 15-October 1, 2011
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, September 25 at 2:00 pm.
September 15: Free opening night reception!
September 22: Pay What You Can Afford ($7 minimum).

Clip from ABC 33/40's "Talk of Alabama"
4-star review from B'ham News

Monty Stabler Galleries presents
Art by Montgomery artist Cecily Hulett

November 3–19, 2011
Written by Molly Newman and Barbara Damashek,
lyrics and music by Barbara Damashek
Directed by Sandra Taylor

A series of short tales matched with musical numbers, the stories in Quilters present aspects of womanhood in frontier life—girlhood, marriage, childbirth, spinsterhood, twisters, fire, illness, and death. Each woman’s story unfolds, literally, from a piece of quilting work whose design reflects her experiences. By the play’s end, these story panels combine to make one huge quilt that the characters raise high as the flag of pioneer womanhood. Nominated for six Tony Awards in 1984, this production was first performed at BFT in 1987, directed by Sandra Taylor.

NOTE: Regular-price tickets for this production will be $25 ($15 for students, $10 for Pay What You Can Afford night). There is no additional cost if you are a season-ticket subscriber.

Carole Armistead as Sarah
The daughters:
Gaines Marsh Creager
Holly Croney Dikeman
Nancy Malone
Emily McLeod
Cari Gisler Oliver
Martha S. Summey

November 3–19, 2011
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, November 13 at 2:00 pm.
November 3: Free opening night reception!
November 10: Pay What You Can Afford ($10 minimum).

Quilters Production Program

BFT Honors Carl Sosnin

Just before the opening night production of QUILTERS, Edward C. Miller, President of the Board of Directors for Birmingham Festival Theatre came on stage to welcome the audience to the second production of BFT's 40th Anniversary Season. He then introduced Vice President Janelle Cochrane, who presented an award for Dedication and Service to Carl Sosnin. Sosnin has been a member of the BFT Board of Directors for 23 years, and served as President from 2007 through 2011. He remains a vital asset to the BFT family.

January 12–28, 2012
Written by Gina Gionfriddo
Directed by Mel Christian

In Becky Shaw, a newlywed couple fixes up two romantically challenged people: wife's best friend, meet husband's sexy and strange new co-worker. When an evening calculated to bring happiness takes a dark turn, crisis and comedy ensue. Gina Gionfriddo’s comedy of bad manners, a tangled tale of love, sex and ethics among a quartet of men and women in their 30s, is as engrossing as it is ferociously funny, like a big box of fireworks fizzing and crackling across the stage from its first moments to its last. Penned by one of the writers for TV’s Law and Order, Becky Shaw is a Pulitzer Prize-nominated new play, in keeping with our continuing effort to bring new theatre to Birmingham!

Annalisa Keuler Crews as Suzanna Slater
Hal Word as Max Garrett
Pam Elder as Susan Slater
Cris Morriss as Andrew Porter
Holly Croney Dikeman as Becky Shaw

January 12–28, 2012
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, January 22 at 2:00 pm.
January 12: Free opening night reception!
January 19: Pay What You Can Afford ($7 minimum).

Becky Shaw production program
Sex, Secrets, and Lies—It's All in the Family with Birmingham Festival Theatre's production of Becky Shaw
"BFT's Becky Shaw: A first date that'll get you talking" by Alec Harvey

March 1-17, 2012
Written by Romulus Linney
Directed by Bethe Ensey

Romulus Linney writes a moving and funny account of unsophisticated people in moral and emotional crisis in the Deep South. Nancy Shedman, in an effort to escape the drunken attentions of her husband Coleman, has moved in with a band of Pentecostal snake handlers and fallen in love with their leader, Rev. Obediah Buckhorn. The play blends humor and poignancy as it probes into the circumstances and stories... of the various cult members. What happens when Coleman comes to claim his wife? In 1976, BFT was one of the first theatres in the country to stage the play. The Birmingham press hailed Linney as an author to be reckoned with "by every imaginable measuring stick" and the play as "an American gem cut out of the spirit of the mountain people – funny and deeply moving."

NANCY SHEDMAN — Holly Croney Dikeman
ROGERS CANFIELD — Ronald Alan Dauphinee
VIRGIL TIDES — Thomas Shaw
ORIN HART — Brad Waters
HOWARD RUDD — Mitchell Nash
MRS. WALL — Anne Wheeler
MURIEL BOGGS — Karen Black
BILLY BOGGS — Chance Caruthers
CARL SPECTER — Murray Johnson
BONNIE BRIDGE — Ashley Richardson

March 1-17, 2012
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, March 11 at 2:00 pm.
March 1: Free opening night reception!
March 8: Pay What You Can Afford ($7 minimum).

"Holy Ghosts: Snakes in a play" by Alec Harvey
"High and Low" by Tom Wofford

April 19–May 5, 2012
Written by Noel Coward
Directed by Ellise Mayor

No Anniversary Season would be complete without a good old-fashioned comedy! And Hay Fever fits the bill. Set in an English country house in the 1920s, the play features the four eccentric members of the Bliss family. Real Housewives of New Jersey has nothing on the over the top antics of the Bliss family and their weekend guests. This early Coward comedy is nothing to sneeze at! "It does not date… it is in the highest mood of fantastic comedy, it is deliciously heartless and therefore deliciously alive and fresh" -The Times This play was first performed at BFT in 1980.

SOREL BLISS Barclee Woods
SIMON BLISS — Jonathan Sweatt
CLARA — Debbie Smith
JACKIE CORYTON — Camille Spratling
SANDY TYRELL — Russell Jones
MYRA ARUNDEL — Jane Caswell
DAVID BLISS — Sam Chalker
JUDITH BLISS — Linda Nelson

April 19-May 5, 2012
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, April 29 at 2:00 pm.
April 19: Free opening night reception!
April 26: Pay What You Can Afford ($7 minimum).
April 27: Talk-back with the cast after the show.

Hay Fever production program

June 14–30, 2012
Written by Randy Marsh
Directed by Edward C. Miller

The novel by Vicki Covington was adapted for the stage by her brother Randy Marsh, a playwright and founding member of BFT. Set in Birmingham in 1961, when Freedom Riders were passing through the Deep South, the production centers around a hotel run by Dinah Fraley and her husband. They are visited frequently by the Birmingham Commissioner of Public Safety, Bull Connor, a known racist and bigot. Racial tensions run high in this powerful drama that was originally staged in 1996, and closes out our 40th Anniversary Season.

DINAH — Amanda Maddox
GRACIE — Erin McMahon
ANGEL — Sayo Orange
BENNY — Douglas Coghlan
SUGARFOOT — Evan Miller
CONNOR — James Ward
PETE — David Seale
NATHAN — Marcus Emel
LYDIA — Alysa Rambo

June 14-June 30, 2012
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm.
Sunday, June 24 at 2:00 pm.
June 14: Free opening night reception!
June 21: Pay What You Can Afford ($7 minimum).
June 22: Talk-back with the cast after the show.

This information is subject to change.
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