August 11-15: The Heartbreak Henry, dir. David Sheffield
Take a 19-year-old Ole Miss student and sign him up as night manager of the aging Henry Hotel in Oxford and you have the comedy The Heartbreak Henry, which will be presented at the Gertrude C. Ford Theatre August 11-15. The Heartbreak Henry, written and directed by David Sheffield, the former head copy-writer for Saturday Night Live, features many of the cranky, contentious and confused patrons who frequented the run-down hotel during his tenure. The production is presented by Theatre Oxford with co-sponsorship through the University of Mississippi School of Journalism & New Media.
Note: This show is not suitable for children under 13 years of age.
According to Sheffield, “I went to Ole Miss for an education, but the real education took place at the Henry Hotel. I saw things at the Henry I never saw at home.”
2-minute film clip of Sheffield talking about The Heartbreak Henry: https://vimeo.com/547692332
Heartbreak Henry: The Show Must Go On documentary airs on MPB
Dates: Sunday, August 7 at 3pm; Tuesday, August 9 at 2pm; Friday, August 12 at 7:30pm
December (various dates): Peppermint Bear: The Taming of the Shoe, by Michael Sinder, dir. Jaime Adams
Theatre Oxford is very excited to announce the holiday presentation of Peppermint Bear – Taming of the Shoe, written by Michael Sinder.
Dastardly Percy, an out of work Director/Choreographer, arrives in the guise of a shoe salesman for elf shoes. His real plan is to become rich and famous through the use of elf, Gert, and a magic magnet that forces her to dance! Will Gert be able to break the spell? Will the Peppermint Bear be able to save Christmas? Find out when Theatre Oxford presents this family friendly, audience participation, travelling holiday show. Join us as we share holiday fun with young and old and an introduction into the interactive world of theatre!
April 28-30: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, by William Shakespeare, dir. Naomi Levin
Masks are highly recommended for all performances.
The setting for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is Athens and its adjacent forest. The city represents a civilized life with respect for authority, while the forest is wild and chaotic. The play opens with Egeus bringing a legal dispute before Hippolyta. As Queen of the Amazon, Hyppolyta is the city’s chief legal authority, and she is tasked to uphold the law. Attempting to follow the law, Hyppolyta tells Lysander he must obey his mother and marry Helena– not Hermia. With its unruly environment, the forest is ruled by fairy mischief, and social norms disintegrate, shown by increasing chaos for the Athenian lovers, along with Oberon and Nick Bottom. When Athenian law and order fails, forest mischief ultimately succeeds.
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” at its heart, is a love story, featuring mischievous fairies, two love-crossed couples, and a bungling acting troupe. When Titania, queen of the fairies, sends her impish helper Puck on a magical mission, mayhem reigns in the forest for one unforgettable night. Confused? You won’t be, when Theatre Oxford presents this fairy-like experience celebrating art with the prince of playwrights, William Shakespeare, in one of his most cherished comedies.
Shakespeare is famous for writing works about love run amok, mistaken identities, and magical locations, which have delighted audiences for centuries. In director Naomi Levin’s original gender-swapping version we get to see this enchanted story come alive with a myriad of new twists and turns.
Local artists from all genres have come together to create a magical event you won’t forget, complete with an art sale and fairy-world lobby display with extraordinary foods and drinks created especially for you – and of course, you will get to see one of Shakespeare’s most celebrated works, for after all, “the play’s the thing.”
May 12-14: The 2022 Ten-Minute Play Festival
Theatre Oxford’s annual 10-Minute Play Festival draws new works from all over the world. The grand prize is $1,000 plus production in arts-loving Oxford Mississippi, a town beloved for its literary history. This season, we’ll produce a handful of the contest winners and runners-up, as well as a couple gems from local authors. The Festival will take place in February at the Powerhouse, Oxford’s arts hub.
2021 10-Minute Play Contest Grand Prize Winner:
867 Deaths of Jesse James: C.A. Munn, dir by Jackie Daniels
Also presenting 2021 10-Minute Play Contest submissions:
Jarring: Leslie Barker, dir by Allie Grant
A.I. Barista: Joe Wolff, dir by Joe Atkins
Skip Intro: John Yunker, dir by Bud Fanton
thirty and next: Matthew Stephen Smith, dir by Daniell Mattern
2019 10-Minute Play Festival, Sept 2019
This past weekend, Theatre Oxford and the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council hosted over 300 audience members for its 2019 Ten-Minute Play Festival–a massive surge in audience turnout from the past several years.
All audience members got a chance to vote on their favorite of the eight short plays, and the audience favorite was Emily McClain’s family comedy “Secret Family Recipes,” directed by Dr. Daniell Mattern, winning by one vote over Chuck Smith’s play, “PayDayus Ex Machina,” a whimsical depiction of the existential conundrums plaguing vending machine snacks, directed by Naomi Levin.
Other audience favorites were “Ashes to Dust,” by Oxford native Kate Leslie, directed by Kate Meacham, and “Grief Has Waltzed on my Heart Tonight,” by local writer William Boyle, directed by UM student James Barton. The entire evening’s production was enhanced by the musical performances of singer Damein Wash and accompanist Adam Stringer.
Theatre Oxford board members were overjoyed by the turnout, and past festival audience members and contributors said that 2019 was the best the festival has ever been.
2019 10-MINUTE PLAY FESTIVAL LINEUP
- “Ashes to Dust,” by Kate Leslie, dir. Kate Meacham
- “Dark Matter,” by Donald Loftus, dir. Davis Jones
- “Grief Has Waltzed on my Heart Tonight,” by William Boyle, dir. James Barton
- “The Interview,” by Patrice Hamilton, dir. Debra Anderson
- “Keep a Little Soul,” by Madison Sedlor, dir. Brian Whisenant
- “The Full Moby Dick Experience,” by Jack Pendarvis, dir. Micaela Kostmayer
- “PayDayus Ex Machina,” by Chuck Smith, dir. Naomi Levin
- “Secret Family Recipes,” by Emily McClain, dir. Daniel Mattern