Announcing the 2016/17 Season!

THE WILMA THEATER Announces its 2016/17 Season

All five productions are unified by their striking theatricality, and play with chronology, form, theme, and content, asking questions about the seemingly insurmountable distances that can exist between us. 

The Wilma Theater is pleased to announce a combination of produced and presented works that comprise the five productions of the upcoming 2016/17 Season. The Wilma will begin its produced season with Andrew Bovell’s When the Rain Stops Falling, directed by Artistic Director Blanka Zizka.  When the Rain Stops Falling will be followed by Nick Payne’s Constellations, directed by Tea Alagic and featuring Wilma HotHouse resident company members and married couple Sarah Gliko and Jered McLenigan.  Next will be Adapt!, a world premiere by Blanka Zizka featuring the Wilma HotHouse company in addition to several international artists.  In addition to these three plays, the Wilma will present two limited engagement productions: a co-presentation with FringeArts, Notes of a Native Song, by Stew and Heidi Rodewald (creators of the Tony Award-winning musical Passing Strange); and Seuls, written, directed and performed by Wajdi Mouawad.


By Stew and Heidi Rodewald

Co-Presented with FringeArts
September 8 - September 11, 2016

Inspired by the art of writer and activist James Baldwin, Stew and Heidi Rodewald (creators of the Tony Award-winning musical Passing Strange) explore Baldwin’s legacy for today’s artists with their song cycle Notes of a Native Song. This rollicking, off-the-cuff production uses music, video, and spoken word to capture the energy behind Baldwin as an artist who spoke out about uncomfortable truths. As Stew and his musically inventive band draw the audience in, the project confronts the more complicated aspects of Baldwin’s legacy, even as it celebrates his lasting impact.

“A celebration of Baldwin’s legacy as an inspiration for artists to create their own work that, like his, defies genres and expectations.” –New York Times


By Andrew Bovell, Directed by Blanka Zizka
October 12 – November 6, 2016

A man stands beneath a black umbrella in the rain. People pass him by, carrying umbrellas like the man, their heads bent against the relentless weather and against their relentless\ lives. Until, in unison, they stop: the man opens his mouth and screams, and a woman falls to her knees in the street. A fish falls from the sky. With its web of intricately overlapping connections, When the Rain Stops Falling follows four generations of a family from 1959 to 2039, and from London to Australia, until the falling woman and screaming man connect across geography and time. Its story is a lyrical, theatrical meditation on the possibility for humanity in the face of a changing climate.

“A powerful metaphor for the impossibility of escaping the past, for the way we are all shaped by what came before — and are living in the shadow of what comes next.” –Time Magazine, Best New Play of the Year


Written, Directed, and Performed by Wajdi Mouawad
November 29 – December 11, 2016

Performed worldwide, this semi-autobiographical, tour de force performance comes from Lebanese-Canadian artist Wajdi Mouawad, whose play Scorched was a hit at the Wilma in 2009. Seuls uses stunning imagery and physicality to tell the powerful story of a man who, as a child, moved to a new country from his home to escape civil war. As he loses himself in a new context and language, he soon realizes that his childhood emigration has begun to compromise his own sense of self—along with his capacity for happiness. Over the course of his performance, the character overcomes his self-doubt and finds release through color, sensation, and dream.

Performed in French with projected English titles.

"[Mouawad] works his way into the depths of your soul... the latest piece by this native Lebanese artist had the effect of an exploding bomb." —Le journal de Montreal


By Nick Payne, Directed by Tea Alagic
Featuring HotHouse Artists Sarah Gliko and Jered McLenigan
January 11 – February 5, 2017

Marianne, a theoretical physicist, and Roland, a beekeeper, meet at a party. In that moment lies a lifetime of possibilities, with seemingly mundane choices that will catapult them into wholly different lives. As time bends around them, Marianne and Roland are pushed together and split apart: maybe they get engaged to each other, or maybe they marry other people; maybe their love lasts forever, or maybe it’s cut tragically short. As time and space bend around them, their story spans friendship and free will, love and multiverse theory—and honey.

“Who knew that higher physics could be so sexy, so accessible — and so emotionally devastating? This story of parallel universes is universal in every sense of the word.”
-New York Times


A World Premiere, Written and Directed by Blanka Zizka
Featuring the Wilma HotHouse resident acting company, with international artists
March 22 – April 22, 2017

It’s the summer of 1977, and 22-year-old Lenka is fleeing the mind-numbing boredom of “normalized” Czechoslovakia, where everything is a euphemism for something else. In a moment of exhaustion and hunger, Lenka encounters an Old Woman from an extinct Slavic tribe, accompanied by four mysterious men. They take Lenka on a surreal ride full of surprises and unexpected turns, exploring a dream-like world where the past and future meet and multiple realities collide. Adapt! examines the forces behind collectivism and consumerism, and the nuances of loss and displacement, through a deft pairing of absurdist comedy with powerful emotional content. Major support for Adapt! has been provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

“Your play is very you! - East Europeanish, quirky and eccentric, personal and political, and very much a director’s play... congratulations on writing a play of real individuality.” – Tom Stoppard