AlterTheater’s first season since COVID-19 shut down the theater industry includes a mix of virtual programming and outdoor in-person work. AlterTheater will also continue its Arts Learning Project for Native Youth, created to provide virtual performing arts workshops for Native youth in reservation communities.
The season starts with an audio play by Andrew Saito, Br’er Peach, produced in collaboration with The Parsnip Ship and in association with Business Lunch Productions. The season continues with a much-needed comedic romp, Snag by Tara Moses. The season closes in Summer 2022 with the long-awaited, COVID-postponed Pure Native by Vickie Ramirez.
Join us from home, or in person outdoors!
About the plays
Br'er Peach, AlterTheater's first digital offering, is an audio play from Andrew Saito and won the 2020 Rella Lossy Award. Starring San Francisco Mime Troupe mainstay Michael Gene Sullivan and Broadway-bound Crystal Lucas-Perry, Br'er Peach draws from African-American storytelling traditions, and weaves traditional elements from the Japanese folktale Momotaro, about a boy born from a giant magical peach, into a new story where spirited animals join the fight against the true ogres of corporate greed, racism, and the displacement of Black folk in rural Georgia. Br’er Peach previewed earlier this year, and officially opened with Dallas’s Bishop Arts Theatre Center, before it comes home this fall to conclude its rolling world premiere run at AlterTheater. Br'er Peach will be available beginning in October.
Snag, designed to be a play within a film, will be recorded this fall, then edited and released in time for Valentine’s Day. “Snag is the world’s first Native American romantic comedy….we think!” says playwright Tara Moses.
Snag is the story of a son trying to save his parents’ marriage by reminding them why they fell in love. “I just want the world to laugh because we deserve a good time!” says Moses. “Honestly, the world deserves a good laugh and a good snag.”
Pure Native concludes the season in Summer 2022, as an outdoor touring production.
“Pure Native is a play about divided loyalties and beliefs on the microcosm of a Haudenosaunee Reservation in upstate New York,” says Ramirez. “The Rez is not in good shape, jobs are scarce, and a recent flood has strained the already overburdened community. A prodigal son returns with a seemingly lucrative solution. He works for a large water conglomerate that wants to license the water rights of the Rez and build a bottled water factory. This means jobs and many new opportunities for the community. However, Brewster’s old flame, Connie, is a vocal opponent.”
“I love Connie,” says AlterTheater artistic director Jeanette Harrison. “She’s passionate about her community, and very determined to fight for what’s best.” Soon, the Rez is divided against itself.
Pure Native is at once a uniquely Indigenous story, but it also tells a timely story about a deeply polarized community.
Tickets will be available on a sliding scale. "Nearly 2/3 of our audiences qualified as low income before the pandemic," says Harrison. "It's very important that the stories we tell are accessible to our full community."
Funding Award and Ask
AlterTheater has received two grants in support of its 2021/2022 programming, including a matching grant of $17,100 from the California Arts Council. "We hope our community will invest in us," says Harrison, "so we can continue using storytelling to improve our communities." Donate today:
General Fund (to support all of AlterTheater's programs),
Arts Learning Project Fund for Native Youth, to support our arts education program
Ann Brebner Fund, to support new play development. Help us meet our match, and bring these much-needed stories to our community!
We look forward to sharing stories, in places where people are, whether that's your home, a storefront in downtown San Rafael, or outdoors. We are committed to sharing stories in ways that are safe for our artists, our community, our audiences. AlterTheater is joining the wider Bay Area Arts Venue Covid-19 Protocols, meeting minimum standards of safety for in-person gatherings. In addition, until COVID is under better control, AlterTheater will no longer perform in poorly ventilated storefronts: instead, we'll perform outdoors or virtually. We look forward to reconnecting over stories that lift up our community!