The Playshop Theatre

The Playshop Theatre at Allegheny College was inaugurated by Alice Huntington Spalding in 1929 with her production of Dear Brutus in Arter Hall. In the intervening 85 years, the Playshop has produced over 500 plays including classic works by Shakespeare, Molière, Shaw, Williams, O’Neill, Miller, Wilder, and Coward, contemporary playwrights such as Sam Shepard, Tom Stoppard, Suzan-Lori Parks, Wendy Wasserstein, Tina Howe, Tony Kushner, Caryl Churchill, and Paula Vogel, and musicals including  The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Pirates of Penzance, and Carousel, as well as original works by faculty, students and visiting artists. In 2009 we moved into our new home in the Vukovich Center for Communication Arts. The Playshop season is now performed in the Gladys Mullenix Black Theatre.



Bourbon at the Border by Pearl Cleage and Directed by Terrence Spivey

Bourbon at the Border Poster (1) (1)Bourbon at the Border is an immensely important and timely play. Howard University students May and Charlie joined hundreds of other Americans in Mississippi in the summer of 1964 to register voters long denied their constitutional rights. Years later they are still searching for a way back from the damage that was done to them during that long ago “Freedom Summer.”

  • Thursday-Saturday, November 11-13 at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 14 at 2:30 p.m.

Click here for a copy of the Bourbon at the Border program.

Bourbon at the Border is free with seating assigned on a first-come basis. All audience members must be masked for the duration of the performance. Audiences are encouraged to pay-what-you-wish, with all donations benefiting Cleveland’s Tamir Rice Foundation. Bourbon at the Border will be performed in the Gladys Mullenix Black Theatre in the Vukovich Center for Communication Arts.

Consider joining the following special events:

  • The Allegheny community is invited to join a live webinar on youth voting rights and access with Clarence B. Jones, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s lawyer and speechwriter. The event is sponsored by the Andrew Goodman Foundation. The webinar will be streamed live at 6 p.m. in 111 Vukovich Center Thursday, November 11. Afterwards, the public is invited to see the Playshop’s Bourbon at the Border, a play about the aftermath of the Freedom Summer.
  • Join Allegheny’s Andrew Goodman Fellows this Friday, November 12 from 12:40-1:30 p.m. for a discussion of 1964’s Freedom Summer, voting rights, recent legislative attempts to limit access to voting, and the Playshop’s “Bourbon at the Border”–a play about the aftermath of the Freedom Summer. Pizza and refreshments will be served! This Quigley Town Hall will be held in Quigley Auditorium.
  • Following Sunday’s performance director Terrence Spivey and members of the cast and production team will participate in an audience discussion.

Bikeman by Thomas F. Flynn and directed by Mark Cosdon

Bikeman poster

In a series of extraordinary poems based on Dante’s Inferno, veteran CBS journalist Thomas Flynn documented his harrowing experiences on the morning of September 11, 2001. Quickly, he moved from being a reporter and neutral observer standing apart from the event, to a participant, survivor, and defining chronicler of 9/11. This theatrical staging of Flynn’s work commemorates the twentieth anniversary of that fateful day.

      • Friday, September 10 and Saturday, September 11 at 8 p.m.
      • Sunday, September 12 at 2:30 p.m.

Click here for a copy of the Bikeman program.

Bikeman is free with seating assigned on a first-come basis in the Gladys Mullenix Black Theatre in the Vukovich Center for Communication Arts.

Masks are required of all audience members, regardless of vaccination status.

Post-show discussions with author Tom Flynn will follow the Saturday and Sunday performances.