An oasis for those who love classic stories. Los Angeles Times

Spirits Rising Season

Dear A Noise Within Passholders, Patrons, and Supporters:

The health and safety of our patrons, artists, and staff is our number one priority. Due to the global impact of the COVID-19 virus and in speaking with local and state authorities on the latest public health guidelines, we have decided to postpone live performances on our campus and revise our Spring play lineup, with titles to be confirmed soon. We promised that our “responsive producing” season model would adapt to the ongoing pandemic, and we will live up to that promise.
We may not be moving forward with our original plans, but we are as excited as ever to find new and thrilling ways to share theatre with you. This Fall, we have enjoyed connecting with you for our Virtual Play Reading Series (with a holiday event coming your way soon). However, we will be taking Spring to the next level: high-quality, multi-camera films of stage productions.
Lights. Sound. Costumes. All of the gorgeous artistry that you know from our productions will be fully fleshed out in our Spring programming. If you have subscription tickets for Spring 2021, we encourage you to hold onto them in anticipation of our filmed staged productions. If you have joined us for our Fridays @ Five and Fall Virtual Play Reading Series, we hope you’ll tune in for our most sophisticated virtual theatre programming yet.
As our staff finalizes titles and plans for our next steps, we will continue to meticulously track and follow public health guidelines, maintaining the care and well-being of our artists, staff, and patrons. We are as anxious as you are to perform live and share our theatre space with you as soon as it is safe. In the meantime, please take care of yourself and your loved ones.

Geoff Elliott & Julia Rodriguez-Elliott
Producing Artistic Directors

Last updated 11/25/20.

For more information about our response to COVID-19, click here.



Through the ages and from the ashes of troubled times, the human spirit, indomitable and eternal, rises. Yes, we have all been united by particularly strange and trying days of late. And across the globe, along with inevitable chaos and conflict, our better angels are on shining display. Kindness, empathy, a helping hand to a stranger; these are the human qualities A Noise Within chooses to celebrate. Hence our season theme, Spirits Rising!

As public safety guidance has shifted and evolved, we have made the decision to move to a model of “responsive producing” of our season this year, as it does not seem likely that we will be able to gather in the same space either as artists or with you, our audience, in Fall 2020. We remain committed to producing our season while being responsive to changing conditions in our community and the world. In the meantime, we will open our current Spring 2021 lineup in February as scheduled, pending the approval of public health guidelines. We are excited for you to join us!

In Spring 2021, we plan to open with Mary Zimmerman’s most famous work, Metamorphoses. Set in a watery world of gods, goddesses, and hapless humans (the play literally takes place in a large pool of water), her re-animation of Ovid’s myths dramatically demonstrates how prophetic and relevant these ancient stories are.

Next up, An Iliad, Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare’s brilliant creation based on Homer’s The Iliad, a timeless story of war that resonates with tragic meaning—and brought to vivid life by one performer!

And finally, William Shakespeare’s most beloved comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This production will be created hand in hand with Metamorphoses and will share its watery world. We assure you—ours will be a Midsummer like you have NEVER seen.

In Fall 2021, we bring back Lewis Carroll’s masterwork  Alice in Wonderland. Only a handful of you were given a chance to see this delightful and moving production; and a world turned upside down and inside out (but in this case filled with brilliant language, unforgettable characters, and a lasting wisdom) seems especially timely.

Because our hearts were broken by the prospect of not bringing you this extraordinary spectacle, Alice will be followed by Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Stephen Sondheim’s preeminent musical thriller. Join our loveable villain as he sings and slashes his way through Victorian England, a journey as hilarious as it is shocking.

The fall wraps up with Radio Golf, the final installment of August Wilson’s 10-play American Century Cycle. This rarely produced treasure embraces the ever-evolving nature of courage and is uniquely bound to Mr. Wilson’s first installment, Gem of the Ocean, produced by A Noise Within in the 2019-2020 season.  If our production of Gem of the Ocean had an impact, then you must not miss Radio Golf!

Becoming a pass holder is especially vital to us at this moment in time. So, rise with us as together we heal, laugh, love, and continue to be inspired by the classics!

Geoff Elliott & Julia Rodriguez-Elliott
Producing Artistic Directors

Mary Zimmerman’s METAMORPHOSES

Based on the Myths of Ovid
Written and originally directed by Mary Zimmerman
Directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott

Primal storytelling and modern sensibility collide in a sensual re-envisioning of Greek myths, as gods and mortals alike endure love, loss, and transformation—all while immersed in a pool of water on stage. Swirling with passion, Mary Zimmerman (author of ANW’s award-winning Argonautika) creates this Tony Award®-nominated masterpiece that mesmerizes with tales of Midas, Orpheus, Aphrodite, and more in a whimsical and heartbreaking meditation on the joys and perils of being human.

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Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare’s AN ILIAD

Based on Homer’s The Iliad, translated by Robert Fagles
Directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott

The lone witness of an ancient and ravaged Trojan battlefield weaves a tale of tragedy and triumph, with an enduring love for every victim of war. The Poet, an eternal being tasked with a passionate examination of deadly conflict, grapples with grief and dualities of victory and loss, power and fragility, heroism and hubris in an unforgettable modern take on Homer’s classic.

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William Shakespeare’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM

We promise—this will be a Midsummer like you have NEVER seen! Sharing the pool with Metamorphoses, the Bard’s most famous comedy makes an uproarious splash in a submerged swampland, where hapless mortals and squabbling sprites wade through mistaken identities, mayhem, and magic.

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Eva Le Gallienne and Florida Friebus’ ALICE IN WONDERLAND

Adapted from Lewis Carroll
Directed by Stephanie Shroyer

Crash through the looking glass with Alice on her zany adventure to an upside-down magical dreamland where imagination defies reality and madness makes logic. Weaving a whimsical poem of hilarious and colorful eccentrics, Lewis Carroll’s fractured fairy tale creates a prism through which we can again experience the mystery and effervescent wonder of growing up.

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Stephen Sondheim’s SWEENEY TODD: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street • A Musical Thriller

Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by Hugh Wheeler
From an adaptation by Christopher Bond
Originally Directed on Broadway by Harold Prince
Orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick
Directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott

With a dash of depravity and a brilliant score, this Tony Award®-winning musical thriller shocks the senses with savage comedy, stunning terror, and razor-sharp wit. Savor the macabre madness as a murderous barber, hungry for revenge for his long-lost family, strikes a partnership with a beastly baker. It’s a tasty theatrical treat that will appall and enthrall even the stoutest of heart.

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August Wilson’s RADIO GOLF

Directed by Gregg T. Daniel

ANW’s exploration of Pulitzer Prize winner August Wilson’s American Century Cycle jumps from its first chronological play to the last as an African American mayoral candidate must confront ambition and tradition when the breakthrough of his career threatens his integrity and his hometown’s history. This Tony Award®-nominated play challenges the price of progress as a man navigates the cultural clash between his ancestral heritage and dreams of a better life.

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Header photo: Cassandra Marie Murphy. Photo by Craig Schwartz.