Jefferson Parish Performing Arts Society

Jefferson Parish Performing Arts Society

JPAS 46th Season: 2023-2024

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Mainstage Series

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

by Max Vernon

September 8, 10, 14, 16, 17, 2023

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

Take a step back in time to the French Quarter in 1973 as the patrons of The UpStairs Lounge help a modern-day millennial reevaluate his concepts of love and freedom. 

Wes, a 20-something social media obsessed fashion designer has returned from New York to his hometown of New Orleans to transform the former Upstairs Lounge nightclub into a retail store. After a nerve-wracking visit with his realtor, he time travels through a burned-out curtain into the 1973 arson-destroyed club. There, he meets the men who inhabited this “underground” venue decades ago. Despite the many limitations and challenges of the lounge patrons’ lives--and the horrifically tragic hate crime that ends them—their lifestyle ultimately proves to be more honest, authentic, and joyful than his superficial online social life.  Will Wes take these lessons back to the future with him? 

This show is based on the real-life events and victims of the1973 arson attackat the UpStairs Lounge, agay barinNew Orleans. This attack resulted in the deaths of 32 people, the deadliest attack on a gay club in U.S. history before the 2016Orlando nightclub shooting 

This production contains adult language, sexual content, and violence.

Westwego Cultural Center | Westwego

by Robert Harling 

September 21-October 1, 2023

Westwego Cultural Center | 177 Sala Avenue, Westwego, LA

Laugh and cry with these lovable Louisiana ladies who are “as delicate as magnolias but as tough as steel" as they support each other through the challenges of life 

This tear-jerking comedy is set in a beauty salon in the fictional northwestern Louisiana parish of Chinquapin, based on the writer’s hometown of Natchitoches, Louisiana, and the death of his sister. The play spans three years in the lives of Truby, Shelby, Annelle, M’Lynn, and Clairee, whose heartaches and hilarious attitudes pay tribute to southern women’s survival skills.  Experience the eternally relevant 1987 Broadway hit drama that became a beloved movie in 1989 starring Sally Field, Shirley MacClaine, Olympia Dukakis, Julia Roberts, Dolly Parton, and Darryl Hannah. With country fried quips such as “I’m not crazy—I’ve just been in a very bad mood for forty years,” “I have a strict policy that nobody cries alone in my presence,” “Don’t try to get on my good side—I no longer have one” …you will cry, laugh, and be Southern comforted by these warm, wise women.  

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan 

October 27, 29, November 2, 4, 5, 2023

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

Put on your top hat and get ready to sing and dance along with Mel Brooks’ dapper Frankenstein!  

This zany musical “brings to life” the story of mad scientist Frederick Frankenstein, who repeats his grandfather’s monster mistakes–while creating a lot of insane fun along the way. Victor Frankenstein has died and Frederick travels to his grandfather’s castle in Transylvania where he ends up conducting his grandfather’s experiments to create human life. But by the time he realizes that the monster’s been accidentally given an abnormal brain, he has escaped, and everyone fears he will terrorize the countryside. Will Frederick repeat the mistakes of his grandfather, or will he turn the Frankenstein legacy around and turn his monster into a sophisticated man about town?  

Westwego Cultural Center | Westwego

by Matthew Lombardo 

November 9-19, 2023

Westwego Cultural Center | 177 Sala Avenue, Westwego, LA

Sit back and let one of Hollywood’s favorite “bad girls” entertain you with her stories, quips, insults, and a few of her secrets.   

WARNING: This play contains strong language and explicit sexual references.  

This three-person drama is based on a real event that took place in the summer of 1965, when an inebriated Tallulah Bankhead required a full day to redub - or loop - one line of dialogue for her last movie, Die! Die! My Darling! The recording session ends up lasting 8 hours due to her drunken behavior, physical and mental meanderings, and constant need for dialogue, distraction, reassurance, and her own brand of talk therapy with the tech crew. Secrets are revealed, confessions are made, and both Tallulah and the sound engineer end up “looping back” to their own traumas to understand their lives. 

Westwego Cultural Center | Westwego

by Katori Hall 

January 25-February 4, 2024

Westwego Cultural Center | 177 Sala Avenue, Westwego, LA

Enter the heart and mind of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr as he shares a conversation with the hotel maid the night before his assassination. 

This intense, mystical-political two-person drama is about the last day on Earth of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. the evening after he delivered his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech. The entire play is set in his Lorraine Motel room, where Dr. King is alone, trying to create yet another powerful speech. When he orders a cup of coffee from room service, a mysterious woman arrives, bringing much more than he requested. What follows is a reflective, sometimes humorous, often touching conversation in which Dr. King examines his achievements, his failures and shortcomings, and his unfinished dreams. 

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics by Tim Rice 

March 15, 17, 21, 23, 24, 2024

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

Experience the passion of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s famously energetic and anachronistic rock opera telling the story of Jesus’ crucifixion.  

This controversial and popular 1971 Broadway musical infused with rock, gospel, folk, and funk as well as modern colloquialisms is set against the events told in the Gospels as seen through the eyes of Judas Iscariot. The show follows the last week of Jesus Christ's life leading up to his betrayal by Judas and his crucifixion by the Romans. Combining ancient political history and modern sensibilities, this work explores timeless themes of fame, revolution, radicalism, and humility. 

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

by Michael Frayn 

April 12, 14, 18, 20, 21, 2024

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

Go “backstage” to watch the behind-the-scenes antics of a doomed theatre troupe.   

This play within a play is a fond look at the follies of theatre folk, whose out-of-control egos, lack of skill, and passionate affairs turn every performance into a high-risk adventure. A touring theatre troupe’s production of a sex comedy called Nothing On is on view here from start to un-finish: their dress rehearsal, the opening performance, and a performance towards the end of a debilitating run. The show is a delightful window into the inner workings of theatre, progressing and regressing from dress rehearsal mishaps to friction between cast members in the final performance. This delightful backstage farce comes complete with slamming doors, falling trousers, and flying sardines! 

Season Specials

Season Special! Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Based on “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” by E. T. A. Hoffmann

December 16-17, 2023

Saturday & Sunday at 2:00pm

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

Toy soldiers, the Mouse King, and the Sugar Plum Fairy–experience these classic characters again this holiday season as part of the fantastical journey with The Nutcracker. Travel to the Land of Sweets with Clara as she befriends a nutcracker who comes to life on Christmas Eve to wage a battle against the evil Mouse King. This dancing and dreaming fantasy reminds us of the importance of imagination, love and childhood.

Season Special! Jefferson Performing Arts Center | Metairie

May 18 & 19, 2024

Saturday at 7:30pm | Sunday at 2:00pm

Jefferson Performing Arts Center | 6400 Airline Drive, Metairie, LA

So much of what we love about Broadway musicals is their iconic dance numbers. Join us as we explore and celebrate the best of Broadway dancing from West Side Story, Carousel, Sweet Charity, and many more. Choreographed by Jefferson Ballet Theatre’s Kenny Beck (The Nutcracker, Jesus Christ Superstar) with accompaniment by the JPAS Symphony Orchestra conducted by Maestro Dennis G. Assaf, this promises to be an  evening of exhilarating sound and movement!