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Feb. 3 through Feb. 26, 2023

Showtimes are

Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 8:00p pm, and Sunday at 2:00 pm

(Single tickets: $22)

THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE playbill:

Friday, February 3 - 8:00 pm 

Saturday, February 4 - 8:00 pm 

Sunday, February 5 - 2:00 pm 

Thursday, February 9 - 8:00 pm 

Friday, February 10 - 8:00 pm 

Saturday, February 11 - 8:00 pm 

Sunday, February 12 - 2:00 pm 

Thursday, February 16 - 8:00 pm 

Friday, February 17 - 8:00 pm 

Saturday, February 18 - 8:00 pm 

Sunday, February 19 - 2:00 pm 

Thursday, February 23 - 8:00 pm 

Friday, February 24 - 8:00 pm 

Saturday, February 25 - 8:00 pm 

Sunday, February 26 - 2:00 pm 

THEATRE NOVA PRESENTS 

THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE

by Julia Cho

George is a man obsessed with documenting the dying languages of far-flung cultures. Closer to home, though, language is failing him. He fumbles for the words to say to his wife, to keep her from leaving him. He puzzles over his enamored lab assistant’s words and what they could possibly mean. All while obsessively studying an elderly couple – the last remaining speakers of a language whose culture is already dead. This quirky, romantic piece explores how language can build entire worlds but is often completely useless. 

 

Directed by Carla Milarch. Featuring Ellen Finch (Relativity), Jeffrey Miller, Monica Spencer (Sugar Plum Panto, An Almost British Christmas, I'm Streaming of an Alright Christmas), Rick Sperling, and Emily Wilson-Tobin. The production and design team includes Monica Spencer (scenic design), Jeff Alder (lighting design), Krista Brown (costume design), Kennikki Jones-Jones (sound design), Jo Collins (assistant director), and Briana O’Neal (stage manager/props).

For the health, safety, and well-being of our patrons, staff, and artists, Theatre NOVA's current COVID-19 policy requires patrons to present proof of vaccination and wear masks while in the building. In addition, we currently limit our seating capacity to 70% to allow social distancing. This policy is subject to change anytime, following fluctuating local, state, and federal guidelines. Please check our current COVID-19 policy before your scheduled performance date.

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PULP: ARTS AROUND ANN ARBOR
SEARCHING FOR THE RIGHT WORDS: JULIA CHO'S AWARD-WINNING "THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE" MAKES ITS MICHIGAN DEBUT AT THEATRE NOVA

"Actor Rick Sperling, who plays Resten as well as a mysterious unnamed character, struggles with the limits of language, too, as he tries to define a play billed as a "romantic comedy."

“It’s not really a romantic comedy but maybe that’s the closest thing you could say," Sperling says. "There are romantic feelings, and there is comedy. It’s very sweet and very human and very sophisticated and high-minded at other times. It’s very funny. It’s grappling with intellectual and serious challenges, but it does it in a wonderfully comic way. I was surprised at how funny the situations were.” 

Milarch says this is her favorite type of play, one with rich language, wordplay, and complex ideas.

“The ideas are interesting to chew on” she says, adding that scenes move “from the very intimate to the very absurd. It’s heartbreaking and very funny. It’s a romance and a physical comedy.” 

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

ENCOREMICHIGAN
THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE AT THEATRE NOVA TEACHES REAL LOVE LANGUAGE

"Directed by Carla Milarch, The Language Archive contains some eloquent, even touching, language, bordering on prose about love and love language. And that is balanced with the “Fred and Ethel” Bickersons act by Sperling and Finch.

In the end, The Language Archive reminds us that it’s not enough to feel love. It has to be expressed. Too, it shows how neither passive-aggressive, nor passive admiration, is legitimate communication. It’s better, it seems, to let it all hang out like Alta and Resten. The dying language they are teaching to George and Emma is honesty and genuine human engagement."

 

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

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AUDIENCE RESPONSE (Psst... they love it!)
"IT'S A BEAUTIFUL SCRIPT.

And I loved how the space was used to realize the many different environments of the play. The simple use of three set pieces (two bookcases and table) to create Mary's bread shop, the hospital room, The Language Archive, and more was smart. The use of actors to move those pieces also was smart. The acting was strong, strong, strong on all parts-- Overall, I love seeing shows at Theatre NOVA-- You're doing great work and I love your space so much! Thanks, Theatre NOVA!"

"THE SHOW WAS EXCELLENT - 

one of the best ever at Theatre Nova. The play was well conceived and written; the acting was outstanding; and, the set was very creative. Makes us happy to see such wonderful plays close to home."

"EXCELLENT PRODUCTION, 

especially the casting, the direction including the staging and efficient rearranging of the furniture and props, and the design of the set."'

"IT IS A WONDERFUL PLAY, 

and so well performed, generating lots of discussion. You keep delighting us! Thanks to all of you."

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