A Gripping Tale of Struggle and Resilience Comes to Fort Collins

Jan 9, 2024 | Member News

OpenStage Brings Lynn Nottage’s “SWEAT” to the Magnolia Stage

FORT COLLINS – OpenStage is thrilled to announce the upcoming production of Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize winning play, SWEAT, set to captivate audiences at The Lincoln Center Magnolia Theatre from January 13 to February 10, 2024.

SWEAT is a humorous, heart-wrenching, and honest look at the decline of the working class in modern America. In 2000, in a bar in Reading, Pennsylvania, best friends Cynthia (Ghandia Johnson), Tracey (Sydney Parks Smith), and Jessie (Samantha Jo Staggs) share their lives—the good, the bad, and many drinks. Suddenly, they find themselves facing the crushing weight of layoffs and picket lines at the local steel mill. As the union loses ground, trust erodes and they find themselves pitted against one another in a harrowing fight to stay afloat. SWEAT boldly confronts issues of race, deindustrialization, and the ever-slipping grip on the “American Dream.”

Bringing SWEAT to Fort Collins is a significant cultural milestone for the community. The play’s resonant themes of resilience and unity are particularly relevant in today’s world, where communities everywhere are grappling with economic shifts and social challenges. The emotional depth and authenticity of Nottage’s storytelling promise to leave a lasting impact on audiences, sparking essential conversations about the fabric of our society.

Partnership with the Cultural Enrichment Center
In honor of their commitment to Fighting for Community, OpenStage is proud to partner with the Cultural Enrichment Center Fort Collins (CEC) during the run of SWEAT. The CEC was created in 2020 to address the cultural, academic, career, and social needs of middle school and high school African American students in Fort Collins. The CEC is crafted in an academic cultural framework for the purpose of connecting participants with history, literature, arts, music, dance, traditions, and folklore of the African American experience. Funds raised during the run of the show will directly benefit the CEC and can be made by cash or check at any performance or online at openstage.com/give/donate and designating “CEC” at checkout during the run of the show.

Post-Performance Talkback Panels with Dr. Ray Black and Kenny Moten
OpenStage is committed to providing an inclusive and enriching experience for audiences. SWEAT features a talented and diverse cast, bringing authenticity to the characters and their stories. After select performances Dr. Ray Black, assistant professor of ethnic studies focusing on African American studies at Colorado State University, and Kenny Moten, director for SWEAT, will host talkback panel discussions with audience members reviewing the content of the production and its relevance today. Talkbacks will occur after performances on Friday, January 12, 26, February 9 and Sunday, January 28.

SWEAT plays from January 13 through February 10. All performances on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday start at 7:30 pm. Sunday matinee performances start at 2:00 pm. Visit openstagesweat.com for a complete list of performances, including a free student/educator performance, a pay-what-you-can performance, and FAB Friday, which includes a free beer compliments of Odell Brewing Company.

CONTENT WARNING: This production contains profanity, racial slurs, sexual/suggestive content, physical violence, references to substance abuse and suicide. Questions about content? Contact us!

Tickets for SWEAT are $12-$34. Tickets are available online at www.openstagesweat.com or by calling The Lincoln Center Box Office at 970.221.6730. The box office is open 12 pm–6 pm Tuesday-Saturday.

OpenStage Theatre & Company’s Season Sponsors are KRFC 88.9, Warren & Zoann Little Dusenbury Charitable Trust, Mike & Marsha Marberry, Odell Brewing Co., John & Anne Blair, Avogadro’s Number, Ken & Carol Severson, Sara Wade Makes Motion, Wych & Associates and FoCo Food Trucks. The Producing Sponsor for SWEAT is Steve Finnestead Photography, and the Supporting Sponsor is The Law Office of Stephen Vertucci. Grant support is provided by the Downtown Development Authority, City of Fort Collins Fort Fund, Colorado Creative Industries, Art Works, Energize Colorado, OtterCares: Dollars for Doers Grant Recipient, The Thornton Charitable Foundation, and Arts Without End.

Accompanying Document