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Shakespeare in the Grove – by the numbers

Join Tidewater Community College for the 26th Shakespeare in the Grove on June 21-25 at 8 p.m.

For the first time, this year’s production features a non-Shakespeare work. Get ready for “Tartuffe” by Molèire, who has often been described as “France’s Shakespeare” due to the two playwrights’ similar writing styles. “Tartuffe” is a play about a fraud and a pious imposter.

The production takes place at the outdoor theater on TCC’s Chesapeake Campus, located at 1428 Cedar Road. The Kiwanis Club of Chesapeake will be selling some of your favorite summertime food and drink, but feel free to bring a picnic basket and lawn chairs to enjoy the show.

In addition to tickets being zero dollars, here is a list of Shakespeare in the Grove by the numbers!

Part of the cast for this year’s Grove production of “Tartuffe” by Molèire. (Photo by Katelyn Delaney)

1: For the first time in the history of Shakespeare in the Grove, TCC Theater is performing a play that was not written by Shakespeare.

4: There are four veteran actors in the show who have previously acted in productions of Shakespeare in the Grove.

5: There are five veteran technicians and crew members returning to set the scene.

7: There are seven TCC students in the cast and crew this year.

6/12: Actors have rehearsed since May 15 four nights a week, three hours each evening. Rehearsals move outdoors on June 12. Until then, actors are in the Black Box Theater on the Chesapeake Campus.

14: Fourteen different Shakespearean plays have been performed by Shakespeare in the Grove over the past 25 years.

19: During the COVID-19 pandemic, TCC was able to continue the tradition by performing radio plays. These radio plays were streamed online for the audience.

26: Bugs, noise, humidity and rain showers are all the trimmings that come along with 26 years of Shakespeare in the Grove.

For more information, contact Matthew Gorris at or 757-822-5219. For current show information, including any cancellations, follow us on Facebook and Instagram and search for TCC Theatre.

TCC Theatre presents “Leaving Iowa,” a story of going home and moving forward

Tidewater Community College Theatre will present “Leaving Iowa” for two weekends in November. Opening night is on Nov. 3 with shows running through Nov. 12.

All performances will be held in the Black Box Theater in the Academic Building on TCC’s Chesapeake Campus, 1428 Cedar Road.

“Leaving Iowa” revolves around Don Browning, a middle-aged writer, who returns home and decides to finally take his father’s ashes to his childhood home, as requested. But when Don discovers Grandma’s house is now a grocery store, he begins traveling across Iowa searching for a proper resting place for his father.

This father-and-son road trip in “Leaving Iowa” shifts smoothly from the present to Don’s memories of the annual, torturous vacations of his childhood. Don’s existential journey leads him to reconcile his past and present at the center of the United States. “Leaving Iowa” is a postcard to those who have ever found themselves driving alone on a road, revisiting fond memories of their youth. 

Performance dates and times are:

Nov. 3-5 at 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 6 at 2 p.m.

Nov. 10-12 at 7:30 p.m.

The play is a community effort with TCC students and community members serving as cast and crew. All are dedicated to sharing live theatre with attendees.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students, seniors, alumni and military members. Payment is by cash or credit card at the door. The box office opens 45 minutes prior to show time.

To purchase tickets online, visit

For more information, call Matthew Gorris, assistant professor of theatre arts, at 757-822-5219.

TCC welcomes students and the community for second year of “My Thoughts. My Voice. My Art.”

Tidewater Community College welcomes students and the community to participate in programming for “My Thoughts. My Voice. My Art.” MTMVMA is a series of online events addressing the themes of diversity, adversity, inequality, social justice and empowerment during a time of social change. Events include art exhibits, music and theatrical performances, lecture and panel discussions, literary presentations and more.

The offerings:

Sept. 30

Pandemic and Post-Pandemic Challenges for Latinx Across the Borders
4 – 5 p.m. — via Zoom | | Passcode: 23501
Produced by Dr. Gabriela Christie Toletti
Presented in partnership with Global and Intercultural Learning Committee

Dr. Juan Raúl Ferreira is a lecturer, journalist, writer, human rights activist and international consultant. He has been a Uruguayan representative and senator, ambassador in Argentina, and president of the National Institution of Human Rights. Dr. Ferreira will analyze the unique challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has posed for Latinx across the borders. Some Latin American governments have “used” this crisis to impose unpopular policies knowing that there would be no mobilization against them. Dr. Ferreira will address underlying inequities and threats that the pandemic has unveiled, and he will present strategies to advance human rights.

Oct. 12

Theater as an Agent of Social Change
7:30 – 8:30 p.m. — YouTube Live |
Produced and moderated by Paul Lasakow

Through tragedy, comedy and satire theatre has held up a mirror to the world. Drawing on the experience of guest panellists, this program will engage participants on how the art form can both reflect society and help propel it toward justice and equity for all. Panelists include Philip Crosby, Richmond Triangle Players; Dr. Tawnya Pettiford-Wates, Virginia Commonwealth University and The Conciliation Project; Tom Quaintance, Virginia Stage Company; and Deborah Wallace, Old Dominion University. Questions and comments from the audience may be submitted through the YouTube live stream chat function.

Oct. 19

Healing Through the Arts: A Conversation with LGBTQ+ Artists in Hampton Roads
7:30 – 8:30 p.m. — YouTube Live |
Produced by Paul Lasakow and moderated by Casey Butler
Presented in Partnership with the Norfolk LGBT Life Center

Casey Butler, the community engagement coordinator for the LGBT Life Center, will lead an engaging talk with local LGBTQ+ artists. The group will discuss their past experiences, current barriers and opportunities for LGBTQ+ artists in Hampton Roads, and future practices to achieve equity for the most marginalized within the community. Questions and comments from the audience may be submitted through the YouTube live stream chat function.

Oct. 26

Clay Jenkinson on the Native American Photography of Edward S. Curtis: Art, Advocacy, Appropriation and the Myth of the Vanishing Indian
7:30 – 8:30 p.m. — YouTube Live |
Produced by Clay Jenkinson and Paul Lasakow
Featuring Clay Jenkinson, humanities scholar and star of public radio’s “The Thomas Jefferson Hour,” with Thomas Siegmund, professor of photography at TCC.

Humanities scholar Clay Jenkinson and Professor Tom Siegmund will discuss the thirty-year photographic odyssey of Edward S. Curtis (1868-1952). Believing that Native American culture would soon disappear from the American landscape, Curtis travelled through the American west to photograph Native Americans “before it’s too late.” The result was the twenty-volume North American Indian, the most ambitious ethnographic and photographic undertaking in American history. Everyone has seen some of Curtis’ most iconic photographs, even if they don’t know Curtis by name: “Canyon de Chelly,” “The Vanishing Race,” “Chief Joseph,” and “Vash Gon.” 

Topics will include Curtis’ achievement and romanticization of Native Americans, his occasional manipulation of individuals and tribal authorities, his misguided notion that Native Americans were about to vanish permanently from American life, and his transgressions of crossing the boundaries of the sacred. Questions and comments from the audience may be submitted through the YouTube live stream chat function.

Nov. 18

Poetry from the Pandemic
12:30 -1:30 p.m. — Zoom | | Passcode: 23501
Produced by: Dr. Gabriela Christie Toletti

This event features poetry readings by local poets, professors and students who have resorted to poetry as a mode to connect with others and as a springboard to overcome challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Through poetry, we can empower others, build new connections, and embark on a personal growth journey. For information about submitting poetry for this event, please e-mail

TCC Norfolk Campus welcomes the Visual Arts Center

Tidewater Community College is moving all of its visual arts programming to Norfolk Campus.

For more than 25 years, 340 High Street has served as more than a building to TCC. For many students, faculty and staff, the Visual Arts Center (VAC) became a second home. The building held a growing community and provided many students with the opportunity to explore various art forms, find their own voice and express themselves.

As part of the next evolution of arts education at TCC, and to allow for growth and expansion of services to the community, the VAC has moved to the college’s Norfolk Campus.

Due to the move, there are currently fewer summer course offerings. However, regular course offerings will be available for Fall Semester. 

Faculty and staff offices have been moved to the Martin and Roper buildings on Norfolk Campus.

This summer, the following classes and resources will be offered in these locations:

Martin Building, Second Floor

Roper 4306

Roper 4117

Graphic Design          
Martin Building 2202

Portfolio Prep  
Martin 2314

Students with questions regarding course offerings are encouraged to contact Academic Advisor Jennifer Barnes by emailing or calling 757-822-1820.

The effective date for the Portsmouth location closing is June 30, 2021. 

Swashbuckling adventure on tap for TCC Theatre radio show

Tidewater Community College presents Quarantine Radio Theatre: “A Princess of Mars” on April 16 for two shows at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.

The performance is free and open to the public and will be streamed via Facebook on the TCC Theatre Livestreams page.  

“The virtual radio format gives us an unlimited canvas with which to tell the types of stories we usually couldn’t,” said director Logan Bennett. “I think it will be something new and exciting that the audience will not be expecting.”

The live radio play will be performed in the Black Box Theater on the Chesapeake Campus. The approximate running time is 85 minutes.

“A Princess of Mars” tells the tale of John Carter, a civil war veteran mysteriously transported to the planet Mars. On this dying, warlike planet he meets a bevy of bizarre creatures, falls in love with a beautiful princess, fights in epic battles, and sacrifices all to save the planet from final annihilation. This swashbuckling adventure, written by Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1912, showcases Carter, the original superhero that inspired Superman, Star Wars, Flash Gordon, and Avatar.

“While we miss performing for a live audience, we see benefits to the radio format as actors learn to convey all the information and physicality through voice alone,” added Bennett. “The audience isn’t limited by a single set or lighting design. They fill in the world with their own imagination. They become an active collaborator in the story. It will be a unique and individual experience, and that can be difficult to achieve in a normal live performance.”

For more information about the play or TCC Theatre, email Assistant Professor Matt Gorris at

TCC invites the community to be part of unique music, visual arts, theatre and humanities programming

Arts, theatre and humanities faculty and staff at Tidewater Community College, along with local and regional artists and professionals, will connect students and Hampton Roads residents to diverse, eclectic and engaging programming that speaks to the times in which we live.

“Giving students and the community a place to engage during these times is vital,” said Kerry Ragno, Ed.D., dean of TCC’s Arts and Humanities pathway. “We’re delighted that since its inception last fall, the series is connecting people through the arts with topics that are relevant to all of our lives.”

The events — all virtual, free and open to the public — include a panel discussion on empathy; an artists’ showcase featuring performances from students and local actors and singers; monologues exploring topics and issues relevant today; and in-depth conversations with artists about their work.

The series kicks off Feb. 21 at 4 p.m.  with Health Equity, Inclusion, and the African American Community.

Details for all events can be found at the TCC Roper Performing Arts Center’s Website. 

The offerings:

Health Equity, Inclusion and the African American Community, YouTube live, Feb. 21, 4-6 p.m. View here.

Award-winning filmmaker and health advocate and educator Terrance Afer-Anderson will screen excerpts from “The Black Walnut,” his film about the alarming prostate cancer disparity impacting African American men. Afer-Anderson will lead a panel discussion on health equity issues in the Black Community. Get involved and submit questions and comments via the YouTube comments window.

Empathy Matters, set for Feb. 23 from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m., was inspired by questions posed by TCC students. A panel of experts will talk about empathy and its role in restoring balance and positive change. The discussion centers around the power of empathy to transform relationships, circumstances, context and trajectory.

Three professional artists address racial equity in the performing arts in Lifting the Curtain: Addressing Racism in Dance, Music and Theatre on March 16 at 12:30 p.m. Panelists include Anthony Stockard, producing artistic director of Norfolk State University Theatre Company; Theresa Ruth Howard, former company member of Dance Theater of Harlem; and Ismar Gomes, an internationally acclaimed cellist, recording artist, and member of both the Richmond and Virginia Symphony Orchestras. Get involved by submitting questions and comments via the YouTube comments window.

Visiting artist Ronald Jackson uses unique portraiture and relative speculation to imagine the personal experiences and stories of African Americans from the early 20th century. Join us for Songs of Stories Untold on March 30 from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.

Caged Birds Sing: Voices from Quarantine is hosted by Tory Slade on April 6 at 6 p.m. The artists showcase features performances from students and local performers, including original works.

Designing for Good, April 22 from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m., features visiting graphic designer Benjamin Gaydos, a designer, educator, co-founder of goodgood, and chair and professor of design at the University of Michigan -Flint where he directs the Community Design Studio. Gaydos finds beauty in the details, humanity through collaboration, joy in the act of creating, and wholeheartedly believes that design can sustain, heal and empower. 

On April 26 from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. Breaking Through: A Showcase of Actors. CORE Theatre Ensemble and the TCC Roper Performing Arts Center team up to present curated live monologues submitted by student, amateur and professional actors exploring topics and issues that are especially relevant to humankind today. For information about participating, contact