The Department of Theatre Arts at SUNY New Paltz will replace its traditional model of full-scale stage productions with a series of smaller staged readings this fall, allowing students and faculty to gather and perform while safely adhering to social-distancing practices.
The new model — replacing four Mainstage Productions with approximately ten staged readings during the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters — lends itself to the use of masks or other personal protective equipment during performances and rehearsals, and makes limited and/or socially distanced audiences a possibility “as conditions demand.”
The department’s plan for 2020-21 is contingent on campus, local, state and federal guidelines allowing for face-to-face classes. Plans can and will change as said guidelines possibly evolve as the semester progresses.
Despite scaling back the scope of the department’s Mainstage season, this model will allow for more stories to be told than in a typical production year, and will in turn provide meaningful experiential learning opportunities for students. Titles will be selected to feature underrepresented voices and works from traditionally marginalized populations.
More information on production titles and performance schedules will be announced soon and published on the Department of Theatre Arts web page.