2017-2018 45th Season

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17-18 Season Page Banner17-18 In The Heights

Music & Lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda       Book by Quiara Alegría Hudes
Conceived by Lin-Manuel Miranda
Directed by Melissa Rain Anderson
Choreographed by Julio Agustin
Musical Direction by Don Kot
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

September 5 – October 8, 2017

In ‘the Heights,’ life is always colorful and everybody knows everyone. Here, coffee from the corner bodega is sweet and the air is filled with the sounds of salsa, merengue, soul, hip-hop and R & B. But it’s a neighborhood on the cusp of change, where the biggest decisions can be choosing which traditions you keep and which ones you leave behind. This landmark musical by the creator of Hamilton was the winner of 4 Tony Awards (including Best Musical and Best Original Score) and a Pulitzer Prize-nominee.

17-18 Smart People 2

By Lydia Diamond
Directed by Summer L. Williams
A Production from the Kitchen Theatre Company, Ithaca
Part of the Fielding Studio Series

October 5 – October 22, 2017

On the eve of the 2008 Presidential Election, four intellectuals find themselves embroiled in a complex web of social and sexual politics. Brian, a neuroscientist, is studying the brain’s responses to race and its societal implications. Ginny, a psychologist, is studying low-income Asian-American women’s reaction to stress. Jackson, a young doctor, has opened a clinic for low-income patients. Valerie, a talented actor, is struggling to make ends meet by working as a maid. Everyone wants to be successful, to find love, and to feel as if they’ve made a positive impact on the world. But what influence does race have on that quest? A brilliantly hilarious and incisive play by the playwright of the award-winning Broadway play, Stick Fly.

17-18 The Agitators 2

World Premiere

By Mat Smart
A commission from Geva Theatre Center & the New York State Council on the Arts
Directed by Logan Vaughn
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

October 17 – November 12, 2017

The Agitators tells of the enduring but tempestuous friendship of Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass. Great allies?  Yes.  And at times, great adversaries. Young abolitionists when they met in Rochester in the 1840s, they were full of hopes, dreams and a common purpose.   As they grew to become the cultural icons we know today, their movements collided and their friendship was severely tested. This is the story of that 45-year friendship – from its beginning in Rochester, through a Civil War and to the highest halls of government. They agitated the nation, they agitated each other and, in doing so, they helped shape the Constitution and the course of American history.

17-18 Josh Cohen

Book, Lyrics and Music by David Rossmer and Steve Rosen
Directed by Hunter Foster
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

January 9 – February 4, 2018

Josh Cohen just can’t get a break (or a girlfriend). He’s overweight, broke and underemployed. To top it all off, his apartment is robbed of everything but a single Neil Diamond CD. But then a mysterious letter arrives that could change his life forever. This hilarious and ingenious musical comedy by David Rossmer and Pittsford native Steve Rosen was nominated for six Drama Desk Awards and the Lortel Award for Outstanding Musical.

17-18 At Wits End

By Margaret Engel and Allison Engel
Directed by Mark Cuddy
Starring Pam Sherman as Erma Bombeck
Part of the Fielding Studio Series

January 25 – February 11, 2018

Erma Bombeck, one of our country’s most beloved humorists, captured the frustrations of her generation by asking, “If life is a bowl of cherries, what am I doing in the pits?”  Starring “Suburban Outlaw” and columnist Pam Sherman, this is the story behind America’s favorite average housewife who championed the lives of women with an incomparable wit that sprang from the most unexpected place of all — the truth.

17-18 Anne Frank

by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, newly adapted by Wendy Kesselman
Directed by David Ira Goldstein
A Co-Production with Arizona Theatre Company
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

February 13 – March 18, 2018

The Diary of Anne Frank is one of the most important literary works of the 20th century.  In this powerful new adaptation, Anne Frank emerges from history a bright and talented young girl with the aspirations of any teenager. This impassioned drama about the lives of eight people in hiding from the Nazis in a concealed Amsterdam attic captures the claustrophobic reality of their daily existence. Anne’s story of love, hope, courage and triumph of the human spirit has captivated audiences with its profound message for over 70 years.

17-18 Heartland

World Premiere

By Gabriel Jason Dean
Directed by Pirronne Yousefzadeh
Part of the Fielding Studio Series

March 17 – April 1, 2018

Dr. Harold Banks is a renowned professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Nebraska. When Nazrullah, an Afghan refugee, suddenly arrives at his doorstep armed only with well-worn copies of The Diary of Anne Frank and The Old Man and the Sea in his hand belonging to Harold’s daughter – an American teacher killed in an attack on an Afghan Girls School – the two men spend the next few months as unlikely roommates. Featuring Artistic Director Mark Cuddy as ‘Harold’ in his return to the Geva stage, Heartland is an emotional journey through love and loss, an examination of culpability and, ultimately, a meditation on the power of forgiveness.


17-18 One House 2

World Premiere

By Catherine Trieschmann
Directed by Mark Clements
A Co-production with Milwaukee Repertory Theatre
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

April 3 – April 29, 2018

When Rafael and Camila Hernandez move in downstairs to help Joanne with her elderly and cantankerous curmudgeon of a father, Joanne breathes a little easier. She needs their help, and they need jobs. But she can’t anticipate the complications that arise when “the help” starts to feel like family…and act like it. A brilliant new comedy by one of today’s hottest playwrights about boundaries, power, privilege and anxiety in a single backyard. 


17-18 Steel Magnolias

By Robert Harling
Directed by Skip Greer
Part of the Wilson Stage Series

May 8 – June 3, 2018

Truvy’s motto at her Louisiana beauty shop is: “There is no such thing as natural beauty.” Through clouds of hairspray and over the buzz of blow dryers, six sassy southern spitfires gather every week to gossip, swap recipes and support each other through thick and thin. But those sisterly bonds are about to be tested when M’Lynn and her daughter Shelby face a life-changing event. Heartwarming and humorous, Steel Magnolias is a story of love, loss, and enduring friendship.


All plays, dates, artists and prices subject to change.






By Mary P. Hamlin and George Arliss
In the Wilson Stage
Monday, September 25, 2017

In celebration of Geva’s production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s In the Heights, on Monday, September 25, Geva will present a one-night only reading of Broadway’s first Hamilton, penned 100 years ago by West Bloomfield native Mary P. Hamlin and star of stage and screen George Arliss. The reading will feature In the Heights cast members and is underwritten by Mary Hamlin’s grandson, George Hamlin IV, Chairman of Canandaigua National Bank and Trust and his wife, Mary. Torn from the pages of our history books, Hamilton tells the story of a country struggling to define itself in its newly won independence.  War hero Alexander Hamilton has a plan to create a strong centralized government, but he’s opposed by powerful, popular men who will stop at nothing to destroy him, and they’d be happy to  destroy the Washington administration at the same time. Who will win this battle of wills, waged long before the rules of engagement in American politics have even been considered?


In the Fielding Stage
September 14-23, 2017

The Fielding Stage will once again be a venue for the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival, hosting a wide variety of performances.


In the Fielding Stage
October 24 – November 5, 2017

A two-week showcase of new plays and projects that are currently in Geva’s developmental process. More than 330 full-length or short works have received readings and/or workshops as part of Geva’s new play development programs, and more than 65 have had subsequent productions around the country and the globe.

The KeyBank production of

By Charles Dickens
Adapted by Mark Cuddy
Music and lyrics by Gregg Coffin
Directed by Mark Cuddy
In the Wilson Stage
November 22 – December 24, 2017

 On Christmas Eve, Scrooge is visited by a series of ghosts who remind him who he was and what he might yet become. He learns the true meaning of the season and that it’s never too late to make a new start. The famous tale of redemption for the most despised man in London will awaken your heart and rekindle your spirit in this critically acclaimed adaptation. Recommended for the entire family! (Please remember that children under five are not permitted in the theatre.) *Note: Not a part of the ESL and Rochester Regional Health 2017-2018 Wilson Stage subscription series.


Written by Roger Bean
Directed by Melissa Rain Anderson
In the Fielding Stage
December 7 – December 24

The girls with big skirts, big voices and big dreams are back with another musical trip down memory lane! We’re back in 1958, and it’s time for the Wonderettes to graduate in this delightful sequel to last season’s hit! Join Betty Jean, Cindy Lou, Missy, and Suzy as they sing about their final year in high school, celebrate and prepare for their next step toward a bright future. Act Two zooms ahead to 1968, where the girls celebrate Missy’s marriage to Mr. Lee! Featuring “Rock Around the Clock,” “At the Hop,” “Dancing in the Street,” “River Deep, Mountain High” and 25 more hits, The Marvelous Wonderettes: Caps & Gowns will have you cheering for more!

Tickets go on sale to 2017-2018 Subscribers on July 11th. Tickets go on sale to the general public at a date to be announced. Check back for updates.

All plays, dates, artists and prices subject to change.