Andie Bottrell, left, and Keisha McMillen rehearse a scene from Springfield Contemporary Theatre’s production of “The Cake.” Bottrell plays Jen and McMillen plays Macy in the show. (Photo by Payton Jackson)

Springfield Contemporary Theatre is returning to its traditional production calendar for its 27th season. It’s an eight-show calendar that includes a performance from Broadway’s Kim Crosby as well as a collaboration with Mosaic Arts Collective.

The season opens with “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.” The Stephen Sondheim musical runs Sept. 16-Oct. 2, starring Crosby as Mrs. Lovett and Rick Dines as Sweeney Todd.

Crosby is a well-known name in the theatre world with local ties. She grew up in Springfield, lives in Springfield and has performed in several Broadway productions, including a turn as the original Cinderella in the musical “Into the Woods.”

Springfield Contemporary Theatre teams up with Mosaic Arts Collective, formerly the Black Arts Alliance of Southwest Missouri, for a production of “The Color Purple: The Musical” Feb. 10-26, 2023. It’s the Southwest Missouri premiere of this musical.

“Roe,” by Lisa Loomer, is set for Oct. 21-Nov. 6. Rachel Jamieson directs this southwest Missouri premiere. The production, which contains adult language and content, deals with the divergent personal journeys of lawyer Sara Weddington and plaintiff Norma McCorvey in the years following the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.

Other productions for Springfield Contemporary Theatre include:

  • “Arcadia”: Dec. 2-18, directed by Jamieson
  • “Hedda Gabler”: March 24-April 9, 2023, directed by Jeffrey Mindock
  • “Every Brilliant Thing”: May 5-21, 2023, directed by Jack Laufer
  • “Pass Over”: July 28-Aug. 13, 2023, directed by John Hebert.

There is still one show to be added to the calendar. A musical is scheduled for June 16-July 2, 2023. It will be directed by Dines.

“SCT is awaiting the release of the performance rights for a hot new Broadway musical,” a press release said. “This production will be announced later in 2022.”

At least five of these productions will be staged at Springfield Contemporary Theatre’s space at 2025 East Chestnut Expressway. “Sweeney Todd” will take place outdoors in the Backlot, with “Arcadia,” “Hedda Gabler,” “Every Brilliant Thing” and “Pass Over” staged indoors. The indoor space had previously been used for rehearsals.

“Utilizing the available resources to the best of the organization’s abilities, SCT will be turning their current rehearsal studio into a new Studio Theater open to the public for four productions in Season 27,” the press release said. “This new venture will bring back the intimacy that is a hallmark for SCT and its patrons.”

“Roe” will be staged at the Springfield Art Museum (1111 East Brookside Dr.). No location has been announced for “The Color Purple” and the new musical.

Springfield Contemporary Theatre will continue its work to make sure seeing a production is affordable. They will offer new subscription plan offerings, as well as continue their “Pay What You Can” Thursdays. For more information call 417-831-8001 or visit SCT’s website.

Jeff Kessinger

Jeff Kessinger covered sports in southwest Missouri for the better part of 20 years, from young athletes to the pros. The Springfield native and Missouri State University alumnus is thrilled to be doing journalism in the Queen City, helping connect the community with important information. He and wife Jamie daily try to keep a tent on the circus that is a blended family of five kids and three cats. More by Jeff Kessinger