American Stage's first full season in its new theater will open with August Wilson's Fences, which won both the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award for best play. It will be the third production in the company's cycle of Wilson's 10 plays that chronicle African-American life in the 20th century, following Gem of the Ocean and King Hedley II.
Another highlight of the 2009-10 season is the 24th annual American Stage in the Park show, Hair, the seminal hippie musical that includes Aquarius, Let the Sunshine In and Good Morning Starshine.
The newest play in the season is November, David Mamet's 2007 comedy about a U.S. president who is about to get voted out of office. Irish playwright Conor McPherson's The Seafarer, which premiered in 2006, is set on Christmas Eve in Dublin and is billed as a "chilling new play about the sea, Ireland, and the power of myth."
A pair of classics are also on tap next season: Blithe Spirit by Noel Coward and Driving Miss Daisy by Alfred Uhry. Filling out the lineup is a holiday show, This Wonderful Life, a one-man version of the beloved movie It's a Wonderful Life, conceived by Mark Setlock and written by Steve Murray.
American Stage's current production of Lysistrata, an adaptation of the Greek comedy by Aristophanes, is the final mainstage subscription show to be performed in the company's longtime home at 211 Third St. S in St. Petersburg. In June, Tuesdays with Morrie, a play by Jeffrey Hatcher based on Mitch Albom's bestselling memoir, will be the first show in the new Raymond James Theatre in St. Petersburg College's downtown center at 163 Third St. N.