Welcome to Season 25 and Heroes of the Fourth Turning!

Director's Note

Heroes of the Fourth Turning is a dazzling, provocative play.  It dares us to listen to perspectives that many of us in the audience will find abhorrent; however, if we do listen, we may learn something about those on the other side of the current political divide in this country.  

At the beginning, the young adults seem almost familiar to us: they are revved up on whiskey, cocaine, and desire, and are ready and eager to lecture, argue, show off, and flirt.  It takes us a while to figure out that these Millennials are very different—they are graduates of a Biblically-oriented Catholic college in western Wyoming, where they lived and learned within a bubble, separated from the “godlessness” of progressives born in the era of Obama.  While they join in robust volleys of images and ideas, their words keep ending into insults and diatribes and we eventually realize they are complicated and complex individuals who have a shared history with each other.  In a play that could be grim, we sometimes find them amusing and endearing in their earnestness.    

The Fourth Turning is a controversial and disputed theory that posits that the world operates in 80-year cycles of generational growth, destruction and rebirth.  It calls upon a new generation of “heroes” to rise up and save the world.  These characters see themselves as potential heroes in the world, but what kind of heroes would they be?  

Playwright Will Arbery specifies that his play is set in a town of 7,000 in western Wyoming on August 19, 2017, just two days before the solar eclipse and one week after the white supremacist riots in Charlottesville, Virginia.  This date is crucial for understanding the beliefs of the characters as they consider the future of conservatism.  One character outright condemns pro-choice activists; another refuses to do so, citing a close friend who works for Planned Parenthood.  Both, however, believe abortion is murder.  Two of the group think they must prepare for war given their perception that the country is increasingly morally lax and corrupt.  One wants to attack liberals, going to war if necessary.  Another thinks he should try living amongst them.  A third wants to withdraw from the world until the ”hedonists” destroy each other.  They discuss their education and whether it prepared them for life in the outside world.  They dislike Trump but have high hopes for Mike Pence who they think will change the country back into a Christian republic.

In a deeply divided country where the Supreme Court just struck down Roe vs Wade, gun control laws in New York, hobbled the EPA and more, this play presents passionate, articulate, complex human beings.  We find ourselves trying to find the weaknesses in their positions.  In the end, we may not approve of their virulent ideas or beliefs, but they have certainly gotten our attention.  

Kent Thompson

Director, Heroes of the Fourth Turning

Welcome from Leadership

Welcome to our 25th Anniversary!

The staff, artistic company, and board are all filled with pride and delight as we celebrate our silver anniversary and 25 years of bold and audacious theatre. As loyal patrons to Curious Theatre Company you are all too familiar with our rich history and legacy of artistic excellence, exploration of contemporary issues through provocative theatre, and our fearlessness and feistiness that we carry and uphold in every aspect of our work.

In 1997, a vanguard group of artists were inspired to create and cultivate artistic work together and more importantly, artistic work that meant something. From the beginning, those vanguard artists dreamed of an artistic home for fearless political and progressive new works focused on social justice and equality. That origin is what has catapulted Curious Theatre Company to where it is today! And the undercurrent that has carried us forward and kept us afloat is you. Deep thanks and appreciation to so many artists, patrons, and of course our community.

Yes, 25 years is something to celebrate. Something to reflect on. Under Chip Walton’s leadership and vision and Dee Covington’s heart and vision, Curious Theatre Company has created a remarkable body of artistic work through our shared vision, commitment to our mission and values, and the exceptional ensemble of artists that make up our artistic company. 25 years is also creating a spark. A new spark challenging us to dream big. Yes, we will remain rooted in our mission-driven goal of creating artistic work that stimulates conversation beyond the theatre doors. Yes, we will continue to advocate for a future that is better than today.

We thank you for your support and belief in us! AND we will dream big; we will stretch ourselves to lean further in and excavate new and innovative ways in which to be who we are and who we say we want to be as an organization through both our words and our actions. Without a doubt, know that we will remain Curious.  We hope you will stay Curious!

Happy 25th Anniversary!

Jada Suzanne Dixon & Jeannene Bragg

Artistic Director & Managing Director