Welcome to 35below, ACT’s intimate black box performance space.

Our 2015-16 season includes performances produced by local theatre groups. We’re thrilled to continue Listen to This, our popular monthly storytelling series, and we’ve added Olde Virden’s Super Happy Trivia Challenge, a live, funny, panel-style game show.

We’ll have more information about our 2016-17 season in just a few weeks, but here’s a sneak peek of the shows and producers we’ll have in the space beginning in November 2016!



By Yasmina Reza; Translated by Christopher Hampton
Produced by Actor’s Center of Asheville
Directed by Lyn Nihart

September 4-20, 2015
Fridays and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 2:30 pm

Three men, one painting, fifty thousand dollars. Winner of the 1998 Tony Award for Best Play and the 1996 Olivier Award for Best Comedy. “…wildly funny, naughtily provocative…” —NY Post. This production stars Kevin Patrick Murphy, Dan Clancy, and Robert Dale Walker.
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Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

By Christopher Durang
Produced by Attic Salt Theatre Company
Directed by Jeff Catanese

November 6-22, 2015
Fridays and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 2:30 pm
December 3-5, 2015
Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm

Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang puts the characters and themes of Chekhov through a blender. The hilarious and touching result is this 2013 Tony-winner for Best Play! Disenchanted siblings, a world-famous actress, her young boy toy and a soothsaying cleaning woman make this Durang’s most-lauded play in a career that’s given the theater world some of its biggest laughs.
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The Santaland Diaries

By David Sedaris; Adapted for the stage by Joe Mantello
Produced by Bradshaw Call; Directed by Betsy Puckett

December 10-19, 2015
Thursdays at 7:30 pm; Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 & 9:30 pm

When an out of work slacker takes a job as an elf in Macy’s Santaland, his hilarious observations of the shoppers and employees are much more naughty than nice. This one-man-act can only be described one way: crazy funny. It’s the 14th year in a row for this show at ACT!
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By David Mamet
Produced by Kier Klepzig & Chelsey Lee Gaddy * Directed by Chris Allison

January 8-24, 2016
Fridays and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 2:30 pm

Friday, January 29 at 7:30 pm
Saturday, January 30 at 7:30 pm
Sunday, January 31 at 2:30 pm and 7:30 pm
Thursday, February 4 at 7:30 pm

A young, uncertain co-ed, seeking help from her professor. An academic, secure in his opinions, juggling his tenure nomination, a new house, a growing career. The two discuss education, understanding, society, seemingly forming a bond. The next time they meet, all has changed. What happened? Who is right? Who is the powerful and who the powerless? An examination of power and language, of relations and perceptions, this modern classic by David Mamet is sure to engage and enrage and to provoke discussion long after the stunning ending.
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Next to Normal

Music by Tom Kitt * Book and Lyrics by Brian Yorkey
Produced by Bioflyer Productions * Directed by Rock Eblen

March 11-April 2, 2016
Fridays and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 2:30 pm

A rock musical concerning a mother who struggles with worsening bipolar disorder and the effect that her illness and the attempts to alleviate it have on her family. The musical also addresses such issues as grieving a loss, suicide, drug abuse, ethics in modern psychiatry, and the underbelly of suburban life. Next to Normal won 3 Tony Awards in 2009 and the Pulitzer Prize in 2010.
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I’ll Eat You Last: A Chat with Sue Mengers

By John Logan
Produced and directed by Waylon Wood

May 6-22, 2016
Fridays and Saturday nights at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 2:30 pm

Friday, May 27 at 7:30 pm
Saturday, May 28 at 7:30 pm

You’re invited to the Beverly Hills home of the first female ‘superagent’ Sue Mengers. It’s 1981 and the New Hollywood has begun to emerge. The phone’s not ringing so much these days and Barbra Streisand fired her just yesterday. Sue drinks, digs, and dishes the dirt on her famous clients Faye Dunaway, Burt Reynolds, Ali McGraw, Gene Hackman, Cher, Candice Bergen and Ryan O’Neal–just to name a few. On this evening, Sue is forced to face the inevitable truth: shattering the show biz glass ceiling might just get you cut in the process. Starring local comedy legend Betsy Puckett in this one woman tour-de-force that brought Bette Midler back to Broadway. Warning: This play contains profanity, alcohol consumption, drug use, and gossip.
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Listen to This – Stories in Performance

Hosted by Tom Chalmers

September 24, 2015 * October 29, 2015 * November 19, 2015 * January 28, 2016 * February 25, 2016 * March 31, 2016 * April 28, 2016 * May 26, 2016 * June 30, 2016 * July 28, 2016 * August 25, 2016 at 7:30 pm

There are some stories that are just so good they need to be shared with an assembled audience. Local actor/comedian Tom Chalmers invites you to take part in what is quickly becoming one of Asheville’s most popular series, Listen to This. A storytelling format in the vein of “This American Life,” Listen to This is an evening hosted by Chalmers with stories and songs from some of Asheville’s most interesting writers, performers, and citizens. Each installment features a central theme (past shows have featured stories about everything from gluttony to mistaken identity). Real people. Real stories. Real good times.

Thursday, May 26: I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead (Which May Be Soon If I Don’t Get Some Sleep): Rousing Tales of Slumber and Insomnia
Featuring stories by Melanie Bianchi, Scott Bunn, Lindsay Lee and Joe Shelton plus songs by Silas Durocher. 

Thursday, June 30: Great, There Goes My Ride: Stories of Being Stranded
Featuring stories by Kristen Aldrich, Stephen Goldman, Katie Kasben and Kim Richardson plus songs by Juan Holladay

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Missed a show? Listen to the podcast!
Note: “Listen to This” is intended for adult audiences and may contain language or themes that may be inappropriate for young listeners.


Olde Virden’s Super Happy Trivia Challenge

Hosted by Adam Arthur and Troy Burnette

August 19, 2015 * September 16, 2015 * October 21, 2015 * November 18, 2015 * January 27, 2016 * February 17, 2016 * March 23, 2016 * April 20, 2016 * May 18, 2016 * June 22, 2016 * July 20, 2016 * August 17, 2016 at 7:30 pm

Following in the tradition of such shows as Wait, Wait…. Don’t Tell Me and the BBC’s Would I lie to You?, comes Olde Virden’s Super Happy Trivia Challenge, a live, unscripted panel show featuring local actors and personalities putting their wits (and their patience) to the test as they try and answer esoteric questions about random topics that interest your host, Adam Arthur. Each month the ‘cage-free’ panelists (with help from a few ‘volunteers’ from the audience) will vie for the right to proclaim themselves the Cliff Clavins of the greater Asheville area. With no script, and little authoritative oversight, anything could happen as the pressure builds to not lose the day.
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