Atlanta's Alliance Theatre has released details for its 2022-2023 season, which will include a new production of the Pulitzer-winning play The Hot Wing King directed by its playwright, Katori Hall; and three world-premiere musicals, including an adaptation of the Sara Gruen novel Water for Elephants.
The 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Drama–winning The Hot Wing King follows a gay couple and their friends getting ready for the annual "Hot Wang Festival" in Memphis, Tennessee. Written by Hall, the work premiered Off-Broadway at Signature Theatre in 2020 shortly before the pandemic shutdown. Alliance's production, set to run February 10-March 5, 2023, on the Coca-Cola Stage, will be the first time Hall directs the work.
Water for Elephants, about a man who runs away from his life only to find himself with a traveling circus, has been adapted for the stage from Gruen's novel by Tony-nominated playwright Rick Elice (Peter and the Starcatcher) and will feature songs by PigPen Theatre Co. Jessica Stone will helm the world premiere, set to close out Alliance's season on the Coca-Cola Stage summer 2023, with specific dates to be announced.
The season opens with the world premiere musical The Incredible Book Eating Boy, running July 13-August 14 on the Hertz Stage. Adapted from Oliver Jeffers' book of the same name, the musical follows a book lover who starts eating books whole and gets smarter and smarter until finding he's bitten off more than he can chew. Jamil Jude will direct the production, which features a book by Madhuri Shekar, music by Christian Magby, and lyrics by Christian Albright.
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' Everybody follows, running September 2-October 2 on the Coca-Cola Stage. The play centers on its titular character, who's happy and free until Death comes calling, forcing Everybody to find what has had lasting significance in his lifetime. The company draw names each night to determine which actor will play each character, making every performance unique. The Pulitzer-finalist work premiered Off-Broadway at Signature Theatre in 2017.
Alliance will again present Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol for the 2022 holiday season, running November 12-December 24 on the Coca-Cola Stage. The new adaptation of the story has been written by David H. Bell, with Leora Morris directing. Additional holiday programming includes Club Hertz Presents: A Gift of Love With Adam L. McKnight, on the Hertz Stage December 7-23.
Following The Hot Wing King, Alliance will present the world premiere of Stephen Brown's The Many Wondrous Realities of Jasmine Starr-Kidd, playing the Hertz Stage March 1-26, 2023. The work, winner of the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition, follows its title character, a 12-year-old computer genius who figures out a way to travel through time and prevent her parents from splitting up.
Next up is the world premiere Jimi Hendrix biomusical The Boy Who Kissed the Sky, playing the Coca-Cola Stage April 1-16, 2023. With a book by Idris Goodwin and music by Eugene H. Russell IV and Divinity Roxx, the work follows the story of the late rock-and-roll icon. Designed for the entire family, the musical was commissioned by Seattle Children's Theatre in partnership with Alliance.
Steven Dietz's Lonely Planet will follow on the Hertz Stage April 26-May 31, 2023. Susan V. Booth will direct the new production, which tells the story of two friends living through an epidemic. Written at the height of the AIDS crisis, the work had its New York premiere via The Barrow Group in 1994 and was revived Off-Broadway by Keen Company in 2017.
The theatre will also host the Kathy & Ken Bernhardt Theatre for the Very Young series, with kid-friendly performances playing the Selig Family Blackbox Theatre throughout the season. Do You Love the Dark?, directed by Alexis Woodard and based on the book of the same name by Maya Lawrence and illustrated by R. Gregory Christie, will kick things off September 28-November 16, followed by (Knock, Knock), created and directed by Olivia Aston Bosworth and Samantha Provenzano, November 30-December 23; All Smiles, created and directed by Tinashe Kajese-Bolden, January 25-March 5, 2023; and The Lizard and El Sol, directed by Rosemary Newcott, March 15-April 30, 2023.
Founded in 1968, the Alliance won the Regional Theatre Tony Award in 2007.