Parallel 45 Theatre is thrilled to announce the return of its Summer Festival at Civic Center Park from July 8–August 1. The professional theatre company will produce a three-week season featuring theatre artists from around the world. The 2021 season will feature “The Sound of Music” by Rodgers and Hammerstein, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” based on the comic strip Peanuts by Charles Schulz and a P45 Play Reading Series featuring three plays in one day. Shows will alternate daily.

“In 2021, P45 is delighted to return to the stage. We are excited to once again harness the power of live performance to tell essential stories, assembling diverse professional artists to produce world-class theatre right in our backyard. This year’s festival will offer pod seating on the lawn, so our guests can experience the joy of going out again—safely!” says Parallel 45 Artistic Director Kit McKay.

The Sound of Music
A vibrant, boiled-down unearthing of the 1958 classic “The Sound of Music,” in concert form, directed by Kit McKay. More than 60 years after “The Sound of Music” blazed onto the American stage, this intimate production offers the opportunity to experience Rodgers and Hammerstein’s unabashedly romantic masterpiece as though for the first time. Parallel 45’s timely approach to the story you know and love asks that we watch with fresh eyes as a broken family heals itself in order to stand against the forces of evil as a unified front.

You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown
Bring the entire family to experience this acclaimed musical comedy. Meet Charlie Brown and the entire Peanuts gang as they explore life’s great questions and celebrate the joy of being together. This production is a great way to help our littlest audience members cope with big feelings and develop resilience in an increasingly challenging world. Audiences of all ages will learn that “Happiness is” the simple joys of “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.”

P45 Play Reading Series
Parallel 45 Theatre invites audiences to a series of play-readings featuring the work of daring playwrights produced across the country and around the world. These plays allow us to include multiple voices in important conversations around race, religion, gender identity and more. Each reading concludes with a panel featuring artists and community members. This one-day festival of dazzling theatrical material, in-depth conversations and safe community gathering opportunities features playwrights who are award-winning alumni of The MITTEN Lab’s artist residency program: Monet Hurst-Mendoza (2016 Lab), Liz Morgan (2018 Lab) and Andrew Rincón (2019 Lab). Reading series directors hail from across the United States; Katherine M. Carter, Khalia Davis and Jesse Jou will bring these readings alive in collaboration with the P45 actors you know and love.

Summer Camps
Parallel 45 Theatre will host two outdoor, socially-distanced summer camps for students in grades 3-12. Last summer’s sold-out Outdoor Summer Theatre Adventure Camp is back for 2021; explore the art of storytelling, performance and creating characters while participating in classic summer camp activities like water balloons and tie-dye. A new camp experience for middle and high school students—The Youthquake Company—offers students the opportunity to attend master classes taught by career actors and directors in topics such as audition prep, Broadway dance styles and musical theatre vocal training. This training experience culminates in a brand-new pop musical based on The Ugly Duckling. “Ugly: A New Pop Musical” will be presented as part of Parallel 45’s 2021 Summer Festival.