ISU Theatre Season


Season of Invitation Logo


ISU Theatre’s 2020-2021 Season will be a season unlike any other! 

A season of INVITATION!

A season of INNOVATION!


A season of IMAGINATION!

ISU Theatre's guiding principles for planning this unprecedented and extraordinary season!

  1. The season will provide substantial opportunities and assignments for student performers, designers, and technicians.
  2. The season will provide directing, design, and construction opportunities and assignments for ISU Theatre faculty and staff. 
  3. The health and safety of students, staff, and audiences is paramount. All decisions will be based upon recommendations and guidelines from the University and public health experts.
  4. Each production will offer flexibility in how it can be presented (live, live streamed, recorded, zoomed, outside, etc.) to be determined by the individual production teams and in response to changing circumstances.
  5. All productions, no matter their format, will engage in a design process with all members of the production team actively involved.
  6. While adhering to university guidelines, each production team will have the freedom to collaboratively determine each individual production’s presentation format.
  7. This season’s bottom line will focus on fostering and increasing community capital rather than financial capital.
  8. Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, Representation, and Anti-Racism will continue to be valued in all season planning decisions.

The shows will go on!  

You are INVITED to join us on this historic adventure of INNOVATION and IMAGINATION! 

The Great Work Begins!


Broadway, theaters and concert halls around the world are indefinitely closed. According to nearly all experts, gathering large crowds in enclosed spaces is one of the riskiest activities right now. Therefore,  ISU Theatre will not be performing live in Fisher Theater (or any other inside venue) during Fall 2020. We are nevertheless incredibly excited to invite you to participate, experiment and discover alongside our dedicated faculty, staff, students and guest artists as we engage in new and vibrant pathways for theatre performance. Here are five of the projects that we are planning for Fall 2020. Information on these exciting projects will be updated regularly with details about how to engage.

Dry Land

August 21, 22, and 23

By Ruby Rae Spiegel
Directed by Alyson O’Hara

Last spring’s postponed student produced production will be performed August 21-23 via Video on Demand. Details here.

Dry Land logo

Perform the Protest: 
A Theatre Action for Our Time

September 23-26 Live and Virtual Performances
September 26 - October 2 Streamed Performances

In this time of reflection, reckoning, and transformation, ISU Theatre will provide space and resources for students to harness their voices and make art in response to this moment. This multi-dimensional event will be facilitated by Guest Artist in Residence Tiffany Johnson.

Of the Deep:
Meditations Upon the Death of a Blue Whale

October 23 - November 1 Streamed Performances

Facilitated by Amanda Petefish-SchragWhat does it mean when a massive whale carcass washes up on the shore of a coastal town? Created by members of the ISU Theatre community, this series of short shadow-puppet films reflects on the consequences and complexities of environmental crisis.

A Community Imagining of Sometimes the Rain, Sometimes the Sea

Written by Julia Izumi

November 6-7, 2020

Facilitated by Arpita Mukherjee

Courses throughout the ISU Theatre curriculum this fall will study and create projects inspired by this stunningly beautiful contemporary play. This “imagining” will culminate in a Zoom reading of the play and a curated virtual celebration of all the in-class projects. Ms. Izumi will partner with ISU Theatre throughout the process!

Our Community Carol:
A Blueprint for a Play

December 2020

Directed by Tiffany Antone

OUR COMMUNITY CAROL: A Blueprint for a Play will be a collaborative video project. The play will be told by three bored theatre ghosts who imagine a modern-day version of Charles' Dickens' A Christmas Carol taking place in Ames, IA. Their version centers on Tiny, a clever and imaginative student, plus various other Ames residents who, through a little ghostly interference, find themselves coming together as a community.  

 CONNECTIVITY: Barjche 2021

Streaming February 5 and 6, 2021 at 7:00 pm

Connectivity  Virtual viewing of modern/contemporary dance for camera and stage from ISU Fisher Theater.  
Orchesis I choreographers; Artistic Director, Cynthia Adams; and dancers blend concepts of connecting, reuniting through movement in a time of separation. Join live and celebrate connecting together! Follow this link to access the performance.

Read show program here.


Streaming February 25-28, 2021
February 25 - 27 @ 7:30 pm
February 28 @ 2:00 pm

Facilitating Producers: Cason Murphy, Sara Elkhatib, Zoey Lazere, Abbigail Markus, and Jonathan O’Neill-Rojas

In the spirit of this Season of Invitation, we have invited our students to run the show! This festival of student-produced work will feature a variety of forms and styles of performances created, devised, produced, directed, performed, and designed entirely by ISU students.


March 22 | Noon, Livestream

Directed by Tiffany Johnson,  Artist in Residence, ISU Department of Music & Theatre  

Students performing ISU Theatre’s Facing Our Truth: Ten Minute Plays on Trayvon, Race and Privilege will share original monologues reflecting on their experience being part of the cast in part to incite discussion in our collective communities around these issues.  

Facing Our Truth: Ten Minute Plays on Trayvon, Race and Privilege and the student monologues will be streaming March 25 - 28, 2021.



Written by A. Rey Pamatmat, Dan O'Brien, Dominique Morisseau, Mona Mansour, Winter Miller, Marcus Gardley, Tala Manassah, Quetzal Flores

Streaming March 25 - 28, 2021

Directed by Tiffany Johnson

Written by a diverse group of playwrights in response to the killing of Trayvon Martin and the acquittal of George Zimmerman, these short plays revolve around racial biases, sterotypes, heartbreak, loss and enlightenment. Contains adult language and content.


April 19 | Noon, LIVE: On the steps in front of Parks Library  

Directed by Brad Dell,  ISU Department of Music & Theatre  

Hear selected songs from ISU Theatre’s final show of the academic year.  Songs for a New World blends elements of pop, gospel and jazz as characters face a moment in time: about hitting the wall and having to make a choice, take a stand, or turn around and go back.



Music and Lyrics by Jason Robert Brown

Live Streaming April 22 - 25, 2021
April 22 - 24, 2021 @ 7:30 pm
April 25, 2021 @ 2:00 pm

Directed by Brad Dell

The first musical from Tony Award winner Jason Robert Brown, this moving collection of powerful songs examines life, love, and the choices ordinary people make when faced with extraordinary moments.

 Songs for a New World