August 26, 2020

Please note that as of September 24, the Amplify, Empower, Illuminate series has new premiere and streaming dates. This article has been updated to the new dates.

Creating a series of virtual plays with actors performing remotely and the production and design team working together online to create a truly unique experience is a challenge to pull off even under the best circumstances. To ensure the highest quality productions, Theatre UCF is moving each premiere and stream in the Amplify, Empower, Illuminate series by one week to give our students and production team more time to create something special to share with you. Creating unconventional theatre has been an incredible learning experience for our students and we can’t wait to share their work with you.

This fall, Theatre UCF students are bringing the theatre into your home. We are inviting audiences to see what they are creating through free online readings including a series of plays about social justice and a modern translation of a Shakespeare classic.

The fall begins with a series of four plays highlighting the urgent push for racial equality and social justice that is at the heart of the current anti-racist movement. The Amplify, Empower, Illuminate: Four Plays, Many Diverse Voices series is an artistic response to current events to address injustice, police brutality and systemic racism. We invite you to join the conversations on these topics through talkbacks with the creative team and guest speakers following the premiere of each performance.

Following the Amplify, Empower, Illuminate series, Theatre UCF will present a reading of Much Ado About Nothing with a new modern verse translation by Ranjit Bolt created through the Play On Shakespeare program.

Amplify, Empower, Illuminate: Four Plays, Many Diverse Voices

Blood at the Root
by Dominique Morisseau
Directed by David Reed
Produced in association with the NEA-sponsored art exhibition Illuminating the Darkness: Our Carceral Landscape

Premiere with talkback on Saturday, October 3 at 7 p.m. EDT
On-demand streaming through Friday, October 9 at 11:59 p.m. EDT

When racial tensions begin to arise, what was once a seemingly peaceful high school becomes the volatile and broken community whose racial issues and prejudice have been festering underneath the surface for a long time.

Mojada by Luis Alfaro
Directed by Ana Martinez Medina ’19

Premiere with talkback on Saturday, October 10 at 7 p.m. EDT
On-demand streaming through Friday, October 16 at 11:59 p.m. EDT

A modern retelling of the Greek tragedy Medea through the lens of the Mexican immigrant experience, the play follows the lives of an immigrant family surviving in Chicago during the Obama administration. It offers an in-depth look at the struggles that go into achieving the American Dream, and the cost of each step along the way. Murder, betrayal and brujeria abound in this human journey towards success and acceptance.

How to Catch Creation by Christina Anderson
Directed by Johann Robert Wood

Broadcast and talkback on Saturday, October 17 at 7 p.m. EDT
This performance will not have public on-demand viewing after the broadcast.

Two artists with their partners find their lives unexpectedly intertwined with the life of a Black queer feminist writer from the 1960s. This intergenerational portrayal of queer relationships of color challenges our definitions of family, love and the universal act of creation.

Kill Move Paradise by James Ijames
Directed by Be Boyd

Premiere with talkback on Saturday, October 24 at 7 p.m. EDT
On-demand streaming through Friday, October 30 at 11:59 p.m. EDT

Four young African American men find themselves untimely ripped from the world they know. Trapped in a cosmic waiting room, they struggle to make sense of where they are, how they got there and why their names ended up on “the list.” The play was inspired by the ever-growing list of slain unarmed African American men and women and it is described by the playwright as “an expressionistic buzz saw through the contemporary myth that ‘all lives matter.’”

Much Ado About Nothing: By William Shakespeare in a modern verse translation by Ranjit Bolt
Directed by Mark Brotherton
This performance is sponsored by John and Rita Lowndes

Premiere on Saturday, November 7 at 7 p.m.
On-demand streaming through Friday, November 20 at 11:59 p.m. EST

Two couples are brought together and whisked apart by the plotting of friends and enemies in this comedy of love and misunderstanding. Experience the infamous drama and poetry of one of Shakespeare’s most famous works in a new light.

Details on how to watch each performance will be available soon at

If you purchased a subscription for the 2020-21 Theatre UCF season, the box office will be contacting you soon regarding your options. We appreciate your patience and your support of Theatre UCF. More information on performances for Spring 2021 will be announced this fall.