celebrating our 22nd season

lk – 5 weeks of performances on the Amherst College campus in Amherst, MA on our season theme of COURAGE

Each year the performances at Ko are curated on a theme that we think will entertain, provoke & inspire our audiences. In 2013 we investigate COURAGE in its many forms including the courage to confront, to voyage, to heal, to discover, to reclaim, survive, thrive & even to laugh. 

The shows are by a diverse group of artists who are coming to us from Iowa, NYC, Texas, upstate New York, Boston & Hartford. All are original works, created by the people who perform them & their teams of collaborators. 

Each performance is accompanied by lobby displays that contextualize the work & by lively post-performance discussions that are a springboard for inter-audience/artist exchange & civic dialogue. 


July 5 – 7, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.


Sean Christopher Lewis (NYC)

Teaching a group of kids with violent psychological issues in rural Kansas, Sean Lewis confronts the similarities in his own family background as his father – abusive, estranged – & charming, enters the picture one last time. An actor with a thousand voices, Lewis gives us a mixtape style of performance described by one review as a “one man NPR…” (Read more)


July 12 – 14, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.


Loading Dock (NYC) written & directed by Leegrid Stevens, performed by Erin Treadway

The depths of mankind’s last unknown frontiers – outer space & a grieving heart – are explored in this brave & funny new play about a woman’s solo journey to Mars. Radiation exposure, long term weightlessness, low light, extensive communication delays & poor hygiene are just a few of the challenges astronaut Molly Jennis must face as the first woman to head out to Mars…
(read more)


July 14, Sunday at 8 p.mONE NIGHT ONLY!


The Mettawee River Theatre Company (NYC/Salem, NY)

Based on a Welsh folktale full or sorcery & court intrigue. Performed out under the stars with live music, movement, masks & exquisite puppets in an atmosphere of magic & celebration. 

An all-ages event on the Amherst College Observatory Lawn off of Snell St. Tickets $8 Adults / $6 Children under 12. Site opens at 6 p.pm for picnic-ing.
Bring blankets & lawn chairs. Rain Date: July 15 (read more)


 July 19 – 21, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.


Progress Theatre (Houston, TX)

A new a cappella musical inspired by two famous club fires, in 1940's Natchez, MS & 2003 Chicago.  COURAGE in the face of calamity – but also to reclaim/reframe African-American identity & history. (read more)


July 26 – 28, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.


Michael Mack (Cambridge, MA)

Like many Catholic boys in the 1960s, Michael Mack wanted to be a priest. That dream ended at age 11 when his pastor invited him to the rectory to “help with a project.” In the decades that followed, Mack wrestled with disturbing questions about sexuality & spirituality, & imagined one day meeting his abuser for a conversation. In 2008 he had that chance… (read more)


SPECIAL EVENT: July 28 at 8 p.m.


Heard of poetry slams – competitive poetry events? This is the story-telling equivalent. It's for first person, true stories – told live & without notes. All stories are 5 minutes or less, & all stories must relate in some way to our season theme of COURAGE.

A huge hit in previous seasons, & sold-out with lines down the block at the A.P.E. Gallery in Northampton this spring; this is our annual fundraiser to keep Ko going strong! 

There will be some ringers, but visit our website to learn
how you may be able to participate. Feeling a bit unsure? We’re offering free, storytelling coaching sessions from Ko Festival artists!
All tickets $15. Cash Bar & Prizes! (read more)


August 3 – 5, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.


Judy Dworin Performance Project (Hartford, CT)

A stunning dance/theater hybrid on the healing power of gardens, stemming from an essay by emancipationist & social critic Harriet Beecher Stowe & material by contemporary women in or just out of prison. (read more)



Once again we will be offering a SEASON PASS. It's your opportunity to see it all & save! Can't make all our dates? Bring a "POSSE" of 6 or more to any one of our events & your "entourage" will save even more! (Read more) 


The Box Office phone line opens July 1: (413) 542-3750. But you don't have to wait. You can also purchase passes, posses, or individual tickets with a credit card via our website. Just click on the Buy Tickets link on the navigation bar toward the top of our homepage.

OR, you can reserve your tickets by e-mail. All we need is the name of the event, date, number of tix, type (adult/student/senior) & contact info. We'll make sure to confirm by return email & you can simply pay for you tickets at the door. 

For further information before July 1, call (413) 427-6147. Unless noted, all performances take place in Amherst, MA, in Amherst College’s air-conditioned Holden Theater, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m. Adult tickets $20 / Students & Seniors $16. Call about a very limited number of special $8 tix. 


There are still a few places available in each of our workshops.

SHADOW PUPPETRY: Exploring the Theater of Shadow & Light with Stephen Kaplin of Chinese Theater Works & Great Small works. (read more)


Give your imagination a whack on the side of the head!
with Daniel Stein(read more)


July 28 (one day only) WEB-STREAMING LIVE PERFORMANCE: amplify your community & create national dialogue

A hands-on practicum with the staff of HowlRound.com (read more)


July 29 – August 3

"THEATER OF PLACE": Creating Work from Documentary Materials, Story Circles & Other Community Listening Techniques
With one of the foremost practitioners of this important form, Gerard Stropnicky(read more)

Past participants have ranged in age from 18 to 80, & have come from a wide variety of levels of experience.
For more information or to download a registration form visit www.kofest.com



Kali Quinn, who brought you 2011's OVERTURE TO A THURSDAY MORNING & last summer's interactive installation FACING OUR AGE will be back to create another interactive community art piece on our season theme of COURAGE with participation by community residents – & perhaps by you!  If you'd like to participate in this year's installation we've got a simple questionnaire on your thoughts on COURAGE here.

As you can see, there's a lot going on at the Ko Festival this summer. For the latest news – like special post-show discussion experts – keep checking in on our webpage or "friend us" on Facebook. 

For other late-breaking news & special discounts follow us on Twitter. @kofest

This is the last of our seasonal emails to our complete mailing list. Please let us know by email if you would like to get our weekly email performance reminders during the 5-week festival.

And please feel free to forward this email to friends who you think might enjoy our offerings.

For more info visit www.kofest.com