Community Works – Summer’s Soldier

The Williamstown Theatre Festival has developed a unique program which involves the community in the theatre festival. Since 2015, the Festival has had a year long program which engages people from the Berkshires community in creating a production of their own The Festival partners with other organizations in the Berkshires.  In the fall, winter and spring, artists from the Festival offer acting, play writing and story-circle  workshops for community members  of all ages, social and economic backgrounds and abilities. Out of these workshops emerge those who will work on creating the stage production that tells a story about the Berkshires.  Bob and I were fortunate enough to interview Hayley Sherwood and Boo Killebrew about this year’s production, Summer’s Soldier. Click on the link below to listen to the wonderful story they have to tell about this remarkable program.

Community Works Interview

For reservations call 413-458-3253 or click on the Williamstown Theatre Festival

For more information about the program click on  Community Works 



Selling KabuL

Selling Kabul is playing through July 20. Like the other productions at the Williamstown Theatre Festival’s Nikos Stage , it is a World Premiere. Bob and I had not realized how short the run of the play was, but we are glad that we saw it and urge others to do so if they can. The play will be having an Off Broadway production at Playwrights Horizons in New York in March 2020. The intimate drama is worth seeing as it combines the human and the political while exploring the consequences of the United States breaking its promises to Afghan interpreters that they would receive visas to America. We see a young man who has put his wife, his child,, his sister and her husband and many others in danger as he hides from those who consider him a traitor for helping the Americans and other countries in this continuing war. Each of the actors brings his or her character to vivid life.    Williamstown Theatre Festival director Mandy Greenfield, is to be commended for producing new and thought provoking and moving plays that engage audiences while making them think.  Check out the other plays at the Festival so that you don’t miss any of the fine productions they offer.

Discussion of Selling Kabul

Below is a link to a video interview with the playwright and the director of Selling Kabul

Selling Kabul video

Go to the Williamstown Theatre Festival website for tickets by clicking below

Williamstown Theatre Festival website

or call 413-456-3253



A Raisin The Sun

A Raisin in the Sun is on the Main Stage at the Willamstown Theatre Festival through July 13. Bob and I saw the original production sixty years ago. I have also taught the play so we were looking forward to seeing this production. We were thrilled with it. As vivid as our memories were of the original cast, this cast and this director made it their own. Listen to our reactions by clicking below

Discussion of A Raisin in the Sun

Then  click on the Williamstown Theatre Festival website

or call 413-458-3253 for tickets.

For other opinions, check out The Berkshire Theatre Critics Association 

Williamstown Theatre Box Office Manager

               William Haltiwanger

Theatregoers either call the theatre or go online to order tickets.  The theartregoers may have heard about a play from their friends, seen an ad for it, or read a review. Others who want to save money and get their preferred seats might become subscribers before the season opens. However, they choose, when the special night or afternoon comes, an usher scans their tickets, another gives them their program and another shows them to their seats. All of this runs smoothly because of the skill of the Box Office Manager. Bob and I were fortunate  to interview William Haltiwanger, The Williamstown Theatre Festival Box Office Manager to find out how it all works.

Interview with William Haltiwanger

Williamstown Theatre Festival website


Williamstown Theatre Associate General Manager


                    Zach Krohn

Theatre goers are aware on some level that many people are responsible for the productions that they enjoy. When they read their programs, however, they generally focus on the cast and information about the production. Bob and I, on the other hand, like to know more about what makes theatres operate so effectively. We are delighted when we get the opportunity to talk with some of those who do the work behind the scenes. It was our pleasure to talk with Zach Krohn, Williamstown Theatre’s Associate General Manager.

To find out the details of what he does, click on the interview below.

Interview with Zach Krohn


Williamstown Theatre web site


                                                Williamstown Theatre Festival



Artney Jackson

Artney Jackson 
is having its world premiere at the Nikos Theatre at the Williamstown Theatre Festival through June 22.  The play takes place in 2016 in the Break Room at The Cable Company in Las Vegas, Nevada.  This is the playwright, James Anthony Tyler’s first play for The Williamstown Theatre Festival although he has had many other plays performed at other theatres. It is always exciting to see a new work and the Williamstown Theatre Festival offers many opportunities to enjoy the work of new playwrights this season.

The play is ninety minutes long without and intermission. Bob and I discuss that and other aspects of the play which you can hear about, by clicking below.

Artney Jackson Discussion 

For tickets and other information about the season, click on Williamstown Theatre’s website

Williamstown Theatre Festival website

For reviews of the play, click below

Berkshire Theatre Critics Association



The Closet

The opening production of the Williamstown Theatre Festival, ruinning through July 14, is the world premier of The Closet, a comedy for our time starring Matthew Broderick. Set in a religious supply company, it tells the tale of a man who is on the brink of losing everything until a stranger enters his life and offers him a unique way out of his dilemma . This comedy     is a commentary on some of our contemporary shibboleths and shows how, with the right moves, matters can be flipped and everything swung  in a different direction. .

Bob and I talked about the play.  Click below for our discussion of the play

Discussion of The Closet

Click on the picture below for a video about the play

The Closet

For tickets and more information about the season

Williamstown Theatre Festival website

For reviews of the play, click below

Berkshire Theatre Critics Association

Williamstown Theatre Festival 2018

Finding out what a theatre has planned for the 2018 summer is exciting. Talking with Antonello Di Benedetto and Kate Hyde of the Williamstown Theatre Festival,  we not only learned about the range of plays and other activities the company will offer, but what goes on during the rest of the year. Antonello is  Director of Audience Engagement, Kate is Communications Manager. They work year round in Williamstown to help prepare for the many activities that take place during the summer.

The development of new plays is an important aspect of the Williamstown Theatre Festival’s work under the leadership of Mandy Greenfield, Artistic Director. This year, a play that had its premiere production at the Williamstown Theatre in 2016, Cost of Living, won the Pulitzer Prize for best drama. Antonello and Kate talk about the theatre’s development of new plays and  many other topics. Click below to listen.

Interview with Antonello Di Benedetto and Kate Hyde

          Antonello Di Benedetto
                 Kate Hyde









Williamstown Theatre Website 






Williamstown Theatre Festival Apprentice Program

Besides producing a season of fine plays each summer, The Williamstown Theatre Festival has a range of other programs, many of which involve preparing the next generation of theatre professionals. Bob and I were fortunate to interview some of those involved in these programs. Because of the number of plays and interviews we do during the season, we didn’t have the opportunity to share these enlightening discussions with the theatre people of the future on our blog. We do so now.

The first interview, with Brendan George,  provides a picture of what life for an apprentice at the Williamstown Theatre Festival is like. Often after we finish an interview,  a comment is made  that  adds  to what we  already learned. In this case, Brendan provided insight into how important each person, backstage or onstage, is. In commenting on what his experience working on The Model American meant,  he explained that  he had worked on the floor for the  play. “I won’t get an award for that floor, but I know it was important for the play.”

                    Brendan George

 Interview with Apprentice Brendan George

Williamstown Theatre Festival Work and Learn Programs

A Legendary Romance

A Legendary Romance  plays at the Williamstown Theatre Festival until August 20. It is a new musical that is well worth seeing. Jeff McCarthy is on stage throughout the play as his character remembers his past differently from the film about it an eager,  young producer wants him to approve. Like many contemporary musicals, A Legendary Romance deals with issues that will leave you thinking after the show is over. There is the question of what is true and what is fiction. There is also a political dimension.. These themes are dealt with in ways that keep the audience engaged in the lives unfolding on stage, entertained as well as stimulated.

Bob and I had much to talk about after we saw it. Click below to hear some of our thoughts.

Our discussion of A Legendary Romance

For tickets click on the link to the Williamstown Festival website below.

Williamstown Theatre Festival Website


A Legendary Romance Preview