Tantrum Theater presents Men on Boats, a reinvented slice of American history

Published: October 8, 2021 Author: Staff reports

Ohio University’s Tantrum Theater opens its 2021-2022 season on Oct. 8 with Jaclyn Backhaus’ Men on Boats. The production, staged at the Forum Theater on the bottom floor of OHIO’s Radio Television (RTV) Building in Athens, will offer in-person performances, as well as a virtual livestream, and will run Oct. 8-9 and Oct. 13-16 at 8 p.m., with a matinee performance on Oct. 16 at 2 p.m. A preview performance was also offered Oct. 7.

Ten explorers, four boats, and one Grand Canyon - this comedy is the true(ish) history of the famous 1869 expedition where a one-armed captain and a crew of volunteers set out to map the course of the Colorado River. Backhaus reinvents this slice of American history to examine issues of identity, gender, community, and what is meant by “history.”

Director Shannon R. Davis, whose credits include working with the American Conservatory Theatre, Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, New Native Theatre of Minneapolis, and the Theatre of Yugen, focuses on classical re-envisioning through an intercultural lens that uses traditional movement and contemporary issues to explore societal inequities and raise awareness – both in process and product.

Tickets are on sale now, available here. In-person attendance requires patrons to wear a mask and provide proof of either vaccination or a recent negative COVID test.

Tantrum Theater is made possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council and is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. 

Men on Boats is part of the 2021-22 theater season, which also includes productions by The College of Fine Arts’ School of Theater, and the new student-run Vibrancy Theater, each presenting live, staged shows at venues in Athens.

More information and tickets can be found here. Tickets can also be purchased the day of the performance at the venue, however seat availability is not guaranteed.

The College of Fine Arts’ Arts for OHIO program allows students with an OHIO ID free admission on the day of performance to Tantrum and to School of Theater’s mainstage productions, and additional discounts to other arts programing supported by the college. This supports the College of Fine Arts’ mission to more fully integrate the arts into the culture and fabric of Ohio University.