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THE PROMPTER* Helpful cues for our current setting.

Our Moonlight Revels

Good morning!

We hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy.

In some mythologies, a full moon signals a time for romance and cautions against deception. It’s no surprise, then, that references to the moon abound in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, in which the supernatural Puck revels in making merry mischief.

Lucie Dawkins’s (’18) 2017 Yale School of Drama production, revealed Puck—Juliana Canfield (’18), above—to the audience in front of a glowing full moon created by scenic designer Fufan Zhang (’18), lighting designer Nic Vincent (’18), and projection designer Wladamiro A. Woyno R. (’18). This moment uncannily echoed that of former Faculty Alvin Epstein’s hallmark 1975 Yale Rep production, in which Puck—Linda Atkinson and Randall Duk Kim, below—appeared in front of a glittering moon, designed by Tony Straiges (’74) and lit by William B. Warfel (’57, former Faculty)Two Pucks? Epstein’s production, which premiered in the spring of 1975, was so enthusiastically received that it reopened in the fall with new cast members.

The traditional Midsummer celebrations take place in June, but the calendar tells us we’re only now coming up on the season’s halfway mark. We are fully entrenched in the dog days of summer, a phrase which has nothing to do with the effects of heat on our canine friends. Rather, it refers to the 20 days before and 20 days after the alignment of Sirius—Alpha Canis Majoris or the Dog Star—with the sun. Ancient Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians believed that Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, added heat to the warmth of the sun during this stretch of time, making these the hottest days of the year. But we know now the heat is a result of the Earth’s tilt.

The next full moon is Monday, August 3; 2020’s dog days officially end on the 11th; and The Prompter will be back at the end of the month! 

Linda Atkinson in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, courtesy of Yale Repertory Theatre
Randall Duk Kim in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, courtesy of Yale Repertory Theatre

Yale Summer Cabaret: MEZA

Playwrights Angie Bridgette Jones, Gloria Majule, and a.k. payne

Top to Bottom: Angie Bridgette Jones, Gloria Majule, and a.k. payne.

What does theater mean in this moment? 

That’s the question the Summer Cabaret leadership team, Artistic Directors Christopher Betts and Alex Keegan, and Managing Directors Sami Cubias, Jason Gray, and Carl Holvick (all students in the Directing and Theater Management departments) asked themselves when the ongoing pandemic forced the cancelation of the radically inclusive, artistically daring, and community-oriented season they had planned.

The answer? Yale Summer Cabaret: MEZA. Swahili for “table,” MEZA symbolizes the journey of BIPOC theater artists and makers from asking for a seat at the table of the American cultural landscape, to building a new table. The team has commissioned new plays by School of Drama playwrights Angie Bridgette Jones, Gloria Majule, and a.k. payne, which will be workshopped and presented online. The team is leading a virtual Theater Making Workshop called MEZA’s Makers for students in grades 7-9. Their website’s Community Spotlight features local Black-owned businesses whose work is vital to making New Haven a more equitable and anti-racist community. Learn more:

Playing Our Part

Volunteers at the New Haven Pride Center with Food Distribution boxes.

United Way of Greater New Haven and the New Haven Pride Center have volunteer opportunities with their food distribution programs. You can sign up to pack, distribute, or collect food with either program in the links above.

And don’t forget:

The Connecticut Primary is August 11. The Secretary of State sent applications for mail-in ballots to all eligible voters in Connecticut, in addition to the in-person option. 

Participate in the 2020 Census. It’s more than a headcount: it’s how lawmakers decide how much money our communities get for critical services. 

Be an #ArtsHero. There can be no full American economic recovery without an Arts & Culture recovery. Join the campaign

Ask Anna

Stock photos of vegetables

With temperatures soaring above 85 degrees, it’s important to rest as much as possible, hydrate, and where you can, find a cool environment. For those of us who don’t have access to an air-conditioned space,take frequent cooling showers or baths and use fans as much as possible. Fans don’t lower the air temperature but they do help with the evaporation of sweat which lowers the body temperature.

Keep your electrolyte levels up: drink plenty of water and eat hydrating fruits and vegetables. Some of the best foods to beat heat stroke symptoms include coconut water, watermelon, oranges, grapefruits, pineapple, berries, bananas, grapes, kiwi, cucumber, bell peppers, carrots, zucchini, avocado, tomatoes, radishes, iceberg lettuce, and broccoli.

If you like to exercise, avoid the hottest parts of the day, and remember that gyms and the beach are places where people gather, so wear a mask, practice social distancing, and avoid crowded areas.

Anna Glover is the Director of Health and Safety at Yale Rep and Yale School of Drama.

Thoughts on Right Now

Mark Blankenship with The Flashpaper
Members of the National Asian American Theatre Company production of Harold Pinter's A KIND OF ALASKA and ONE FOR THE ROAD

Mark Blankenship (top); Members of the National Asian American Theatre Company production of Harold Pinter's A Kind of Alaska and One for the Road, top (l to r): Gregory Ye, Paul Juhn, Kate Katigbak; Middle: Mia Katigbak (The Plot), Mariko Ohigashi, Les Waters (Eurydice); Bottom: Thom Sesma (Imogen Says Nothing), Jean Kim (’16), and KK Moggie.

The Flashpaper: Theatre’s Thoughts on Right Now is a new biannual publication in which 10-12 theatre artists and/or theatre companies create new work that responds to a specific prompt about an urgent current event. The company of the National Asian American Theatre Company production of Harold Pinter's A Kind of Alaska and One for the Road contributed the essay, “A reflection on a canceled production” for the first issue, published in June.

Mark Blankenship (’05), Editor and Founder, said, "I created The Flashpaper for several reasons. For one, I'm old-fashioned enough to love the permanence of print, and since theatre is necessarily ephemeral, I relish inviting theatre artists to make something that's intended to stick around. I also want to give these artists a platform that doesn't require a building or even a stage. The pieces in this issue are no less dramatic because they were created for the page, and to me, they're obviously theatrical. (Just look at the way the playwrights use fonts!) Finally, I want these artists to get paid for their work and their talent, and I'm hopeful The Flashpaper's compensation model will generate a long-term, equitable revenue stream for everyone involved in every issue."

#ICYMI: Updates and News

Hull's Owner Shawn Szirbik interviewed on The Today Show

Box Office: New Hours
Effective immediately, members of the Audience Services team are available 10AM-2PM, Monday through Friday. Please continue to use the alternate Box Office phone number: (203) 654-9443. Of course, feel free to send an email anytime to


Lauren and Delores, owners of People Get Ready
FELON by Reginald Dwayne Betts

Lauren and Delores, the owners of People Get Ready bookspace in New Haven, recommend Felon by Reginald Dwayne Betts, an award-winning, New Haven-based poet and essayist who holds a J.D. from Yale Law School. 

Felon tells the story of the effects of incarceration in fierce, dazzling poems. “Reginald’s work is work that we believe in wholeheartedly—both his art, and his efforts as a lawyer, legal scholar, and advocate,” Lauren and Delores said. 

People Get Ready is available through Friday, July 31, for online orders, pick-ups, and local deliveries. The store will be closed in August, re-opening on September 1.

At Your Streaming Service

Miriam A. Hyman
Miram A. Hyman and Jeffrey Carlson in CYMBELINE

Miriam A. Hyman and Jeffrey Carlson in Yale Rep's 2016 production of Cymbeline, directed by Evan Yionoulis (’85).


The Public Theater’s Free Shakespeare on the Radio production of Richard II is now available in four parts wherever you get your podcasts. André Holland leads the ensemble, which includes Stephen McKinley Henderson (Death of a Salesman), Miriam A. Hyman (’12, Cymbeline), Merritt Janson (Notes from Underground), Jacob Ming-Trent (A Doctor in Spite of Himself), Lupita Nyong’o (’12, The Winter’s Tale), Estelle Parsons (We Bombed in New Haven), Tom Pecinka (’15, Arcadia), Thom Sesma (Imogen Says Nothing), and John Douglas Thompson (King Lear).

You can also catch Miriam A. Hyman, who plays Bollingbroke in Richard II, on Season 3 of Showtime’s The Chi, as well as in the recent movies The Sun Is Also a Star (HBO) and The Laundromat (Netflix). 

Small Bytes:

The Movement Theatre Company commissioned 30 early-career designers to create digital content in response to the social and political issues affecting their world for their 1MOVE project. Round 1, released in June, included work by Megumi Katayama (’19), Ao Li (’18), and Riw Rakkulchon (’19)

Round 2, co-curated by Dede M. Ayite (’11) with Paul Tazewell and Stacey Derosier, includes work by Brittany Bland (’19), Alan C. Edwards (’11, Faculty), and Mika Eubanks (’19)

An online interview with the entire Round 2 company of artists will take place tomorrow, July 29, at 4PM EST.

Something to Eat

Sonia Salazar
BBQ Pork Arepas
Variety of Arepas at Barracuda

Sonia Salazar is the owner of Barracuda Bistro & Bar and Te Amo Tequila. This is her quick and easy recipe for delicious Colombian arepas, a staple of Colombian cooking dating back to the Colombian territory's indigenous people. The versatile corn flour cakes can be served for breakfast, as a side dish, or even as a quick meal when topped with steak, chicken, BBQ pork, or queso blanco.  


1 CUP PRE-COOKED WHITE CORNMEAL (such as masa arepa)
½ TSP SALT (or to taste)

In a large bowl, combine masa with cheese and salt. Slowly pour the warm water in and stir well. Using your hands, knead the mixture until a smooth dough forms. Form into 6 even balls, then flatten into circles about 4 inches in diameter. In a cast-iron skillet or flat top grill, melt half of the butter on medium heat. Grill arepas until golden brown - about 3 minutes per side. 

Barracuda Bistro & Bar (1180 Chapel Street) is open Tues-Sat from 3PM-11PM for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

Te Amo Tequila (182 Temple Street) is open seven days a week from 3PM-midnight for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

Bonus Track

Audra McDonald: Sing Happy

Audra McDonald won the fifth of her six Tony Awards to date for her performance in The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess in 2012. “Summertime,” the show’s opening number, is reprised late in the second act as a solo for Bess. McDonald, who received an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Yale in 2016, recorded the song with the New York Philharmonic on her recent Sing Happy live album.


Yale Repertory Theatre, P.O. Box 208244, New Haven, CT 06520-8244 

Copyright © 2020 Yale Repertory Theatre. All rights reserved.

Yale School of Drama and Yale Repertory Theatre institutional and production photos © Elizabeth Green (’17), Carol Rosegg, and Stephen R. Woody.     

To offer feedback on this issue, or to make editorial, book, streaming movie/television, music, or recipe suggestions for future issues, please send an email to