MCLA FPA Presents ‘THE RACE 2020’: A Virtual Theatre Experience, Tackling The Politics of 2020

NORTH ADAMS, MA­—The first show of the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) Theatre Department’s Fall 2020 season is Sojourn Theatre’s reflective ensemble-based performance The Race 2020. The play, performed by Sojourn every four years since 2008, explores questions about how we navigate collective and individual decision making during the regularly challenging times of national election cycles.  

Performances of The Race 2020 will take place in a virtual format. The department’s adaptation of The Race 2020 will be shown at 8 p.m. on October 29/30 and November 6/7. There will be a 1 p.m. showing on November 1 a 2 p.m. showing on Nov. 8. A virtual panel discussion will take place on November 8 immediately after the 2 p.m. show.  

For more information or to reserve tickets, please call the box office at (413)-662-5123 or visit

This year, Sojourn extended an open invitation to theatre companies and collegiate programs in order to examine the topic collectively and nationally. MCLA’s production of The Race 2020 is one of 14 across the country, including productions by Cornell University, Virginia Tech and Columbia College, all collaborating on bringing this important work to national attention simultaneously. 

Originally written by Sojourn’s Michael Rohd, MCLA’s revised version of the show features additional material written through a devising process led by the co-directors, Associate Professor of Theatre Jeremy Winchester and Seattle-based Freelance Artist Alex Lee Reed. MCLA Theatre’s production of The Race 2020 will feature student lighting design, set design, and choreography work by Lydia Jung, Kaley Norsworthy, and Bethany Maloy, and costume design by Assistant Professor of Theatre Michaela Petrovich. 

The play offers engagement opportunities focusing on self-reflection and social responsibility. Through direct dialogue, the performers and audience explore questions about how we navigate collective decision making in challenging and uncertain times. While the play was originally written to be performed traditionally, with actors and audience together in the same space, the challenge of the times requires a different approach.  

 “This play is uniquely well-suited to make the transition to a digital format,” said Winchester. “Its interactive, question-and-answer format will feel familiar to anyone who has ever participated in online chatting. By partnering with actors, all in their homes, the audience members, also in their homes, have an opportunity to reflect on big topics in meaningful ways.” 

About The MCLA Theatre Program

The Theatre Program at MCLA develops innovative theatre artists prepared for careers in theatre and graduate study. In the intimate, culturally rich setting of the Berkshires, students hone their craft through intensive studio training and hands-on experience, within the context of their broader liberal arts education. Opportunities for practical experience abound, from courses in acting, directing, design and production to working alongside a faculty of talented professionals in our award-winning production season. On stage and in the classroom, theatre students at MCLA make theatre of the highest quality, as they explore the rich tradition of this unique, multi-disciplinary art form.