2023-2024 Events

Upcoming Shows

7 pm - July 26–28, 2024

2024 Baduwa't Festival Presents:
Forgive Us, Gustavito!

An Outrageous Animal Noir by Otherland Theatre Ensemble

Inspired by bizarre true events, Forgive us, Gustavito! is set in the backdrop of a horrific crime. Gustavito, the solitary hippo of the National Zoo, was found dead from fifteen stab wounds to the snout. Join his twin brother Detective Emilio Hippo, the devastating Elvira Spider Monkey, Toto the Gentleman Gorilla and a whole host of Zoo friends for a story that is equal parts classic noir and outrageous animal madness. In the shadowy underbelly of the zoo, we ask the question, “what does it mean to be complicit in a system you cannot identify?”

Forgive Us, Gustavito! is the winner of Best of Fringe at the Charm City Fringe Fesival. Otherland Theatre Ensemble includes Dell"Arte alumni Tushar Mathew, Rebecca Finney and Lucius Robinson. Forgive Us, Gustavito! will play three nights only at 7pm from July 26 to 28 at Dell'Arte's Carlo Theater.

This show is funded in part by the Nancy LaFrenz Memorial Fund.

Tickets $20

6:30 pm - August 11, 2024

2024 Baduwa't Festival Presents:
Or So It Would Seam

A Giant Puppet Voyage into the Hidden Universe
by String & Shadow

Equal parts whimsical fairy tale, outer-space odyssey, and slap-stick clown show, the story follows Space-Way Assistance Driver Captain Z (think "tow-truck driver in outer-space") as a mysterious distress signal prompts him to enter a mystical dimension. Between interdimensional subway cars, expanding black-holes, and giants who weave the fabric of space-time, Or So It Would Seam will take audiences out of this galaxy to contemplate the intricate and unexpected ways we are all connected to one another.

Or So It Would Seam is suitable for all ages and plays for one night only in the Rooney Amphitheater. This show will be filled to the brim with giant puppets, original storytelling, and live music, Or So... features a cast of 13 performers/ musicians - and you, the audience!

String and Shadow is a theater company based in Olympia, Washington. Each summer, they create a giant outdoor touring puppet show that weaves together a variety of puppetry styles, circus arts, and original music.

Lawn opens at 6pm. Show at 6:30pm.

Tickets $20 Adult; $12.50 Child /Senior

Past Events

4 pm - July 7, 2024

2024 Baduwa't Festival 
The Prize of Hope

Honoring Brenda Wong Aoki & Mark Izu

Since 1976, Brenda Wong Aoki and Mark Izu have, together and separately, created multi-disciplinary work that has received national and international acclaim. The two prominent Asian-American artists were founding faculty at the Institute for Diversity in the Arts at Stanford, and their broad vision for this organization had its roots in their experience. First Voice was founded in 1995 to provide an organizational structure for their collaborations, which center on the creation of contemporary American art by working in and adapting non-Western theatrical, musical, and spoken word traditions.

“Their work gives voice to those who are not often heard. And that is an act of Hope that makes them very deserving of the 2024 Prize of Hope.” — Michael Fields  

Ceremony will be on Sunday, July 7, 2024. An alfresco dinner will follow the presentation and a performance by the honorees. The event will finish in time for the final night of The Poor of New York

Tickets $50

8 pm - June 21 – July 7, 2024

2024 Baduwa't Festival Mainstage:
The Poor of New York

A Comic Adaptation of a Classic American Melodrama

The desperate drives of melodrama run full on into the farce of human comedy, which always seems to be standing right next to us. Power, Corruption and Greed will be wrapped in Dell’Arte’s special brand of physical comedy and imbued with original music played by the amazing band of Marla Joy, Tim Randles, Jeff Kelley, and Mike LaBolle.

A financial crash, a government shutdown, and some people growing rich off others misfortune (sound familiar?) play at the center of the story.  An immigrant family; a whimsical, opportunistic thief; and lots of folks struggling with newfound poverty inform a plot told through the lens of classic melodrama, a powerful theatrical form where good —eventually— wins out. 

Directed by Michael Fields with assistance from Tony Fuemmeler and featuring a cast of incredible “Dell’Artians”, THE POOR OF NEW YORK will be performed nightly in Dell’Arte’s amphitheater. 

Expect plenty of both laughter and tears as the performers weave these elements into a performance that will resonate in our times. 

Showtimes Fri–Sun, June 21- July 7, 2024.
Tickets $20–$25. Tickets also available in Box Office 1 hour before show.

6–9 pm - Apr 20, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:
Mary Jane Tribute BINGO

B-I-N-GO to the Mad River Grange in Blue Lake on 4/20 for Mary Jane Tribute Bingo from 6-9pm. This event is hosted by and benefiting Dell’Arte, so grab some dollars and get ready to win!

It's only $10 to play for the night. There will be plenty of tasty munchies and beverages at the concessions both of which you may partake while winning some sweet prizes.

Mary Jane and 4/20 themed costumes encouraged. Don’t miss the fun!


8:00 pm - Apr 19, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:

A Comedy About Meat, Bones, & The Skin You’re In

ANATOMICA is a critically-acclaimed show created by Amica Hunter. It's a hilarious, captivating, and sometimes-unsettling comedy about Amica’s personal experience living with chronic pain, as well as the pros and cons of the different skeletal systems found in nature.

Part Stand-up, part storytelling, and part clown, ANATOMICA is an investigation of the inadequacies of different animal body models, and a celebration of the absurdity of being trapped in a body that is limited by pain, fatigue, and ultimately decay. But, you know, make it fun.

"Amica Hunter’s stand-up set disguised as a serious science lesson is like the mutant love child of Laurie Anderson and David Attenborough…Anatomica is an hour of chewy, fleshy charm.”
—Fish Griwkowsky, The Edmonton Journal

Recommended for ages 13+


7:00 pm - Apr 13, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:
The Fire & Music Project

A Northern California Tour of Trinity Alps Chamber Music Festival
Doors 6:30pm. Music 7pm | FREE Admission

The concert experience will feature live music, poetry, and videography accompanying stories of fire ecology, indigenous land management practices, and history of California's relationship with fire suppression and prescribed fire.

The program features a group of artists who have begun the transformation into fire practitioners. Their stories and performances create an immersive experience that invites audiences to examine their own relationship with fire.

The musical component of these shows will include selections for strings, piano, and reed organ by classical and modern composers. Historical works by Schubert, Dvořák, and Beethoven, will anchor the program, and will come into clear relief when heard alongside recent music by Danny Clay and Julie Zhu. Zhu's work Solastalgia, a place-based piece written for the project, centers listening and stewardship in the music as inspired by the group’s work with indigenous fire practitioners.

Poet Silvi Alcivar will share work written on-the-spot at prescribed burns, as well as aid in conducting the evening’s presence and audience interaction. Live projections of video and imagery will show the musicians and artists returning prescribed fire to Northern California's landscapes, and create an immersive atmosphere.

8:00 pm - Apr 6, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:
Horse Mountain

Doors:  7:30.  |  Music: 8:00 pm.
Concessions will be available onsite.

Nestled in the heart of Humboldt County, Horse Mountain has emerged as a beacon of Americana string band music, embodying the spirit of their lush, fog-laden surroundings. Horse Mountain's music is a celebration of life, love, and unbreakable bonds. Their songs range from foot-stomping jigs to melancholy ballads, each crafted with authenticity and a profound respect for the musical traditions that have influenced them.

True to the ethos of the snow-covered Horse Mountain itself, the band is deeply embedded in their community. Their music not only entertains but also seeks to forge connections, inspire stewardship of the natural world, and celebrate the simple joys of communal music-making.

Horse Mountain is Alexia Neal (Vocals, Guitar), Jake Burns (Lead Guitar/ B-Bender, Vocals), Cam Trujillo (Electric Bass, Vocals), John Callahan (Rhythm Guitar), and Ari Maello (Banjo).

Patrons must be 21 and over.


8:00 pm - March 30, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:

Works-in-Progress from the Solo Performance Intensive

It takes a lot to put yourself out there—even more so when you are the only one onstage. The performers in this group work for an intense two weeks to develop their idea into a solo performance piece. What does it take to bring your vision to life? To command the stage? How will you bring your audience along? Be a part of the journey of creating new work.

Recommended for adult audiences. Tickets available in advance ($10) and at the door (Pay What You Can).


8:00 pm - Mar 16, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents: MAKENU

Doors:  7:30. Music: 8–11pm. Dancing: Continuous.
Concessions will be available onsite.    

"I've never experienced anything like Makenu live! The fusion of styles, the energy, it's like they bottled the essence of celebration and poured it out on stage."

With catchy rhythms and hypnotic melodies, Makenu has created a mix of traditional cumbia roots with ska, hip hop, psychedelic sounds, rock, Latin American music and tropical vibes.

Makenu  is not just a band; it's a rhythmic celebration that breathes life into the soul of every listener. Hailing from diverse musical backgrounds, the members of Makenu have come together to create a fusion of cumbia that transcends borders and captures the essence of joy.

The band met in California and is made up of musicians from Chile, Argentina, Perú, and the United States. Makenu features Jaime (vocals), Hernan (keyboards), Marco (guitar), Liza (bass), Joha (drum set), Erick (timbales), Richy (guiro), and Amaru (congas).

Patrons must be 21 and over.


7:30 pm - FEB 10, 2024

Dell'Arte Presents:
Home Cookin', The Appliances

Bring your dancing shoes! Dell’Arte International hosts a lively benefit concert on Saturday, Feb. 10 with two local dance bands, Home Cookin’ and The Appliances. Doors at 7pm; Music at 7:30pm. Concessions will be available onsite.    

Home Cookin’ offers a diverse list of originals and classics steeped in reggae, rhythm and blues, and classic rock. The band, composed of Joyce Hough (guitar, vocals), Fred Neighbor (guitar, vocals), Gary Davidson (bass, vocals) and Mike LaBolle (drums,vocals) are established veterans of Humboldt County music. Each of the musicians have been involved in past Dell’Arte productions.

The Appliances, known as a popular dance band in Northern Humboldt since the ‘90’s,  play a wide spectrum of music including soul, rockabilly, reggae, Zydeco, early rock and roll and world beat. The Appliances are: Joyce Hough (vocals, guitar), Fred Neighbor (vocals, guitar), Gary Davidson (bass, vocals), Jeff Landen (vocals, guitar),  Paul DeMark (drums), and Michael Stephenson (keys).

Patrons must be 21 and over.


8:00 pm • JAN 25–27, 2024

Tickets & Info
Artists in Residence, Papaya Productions Presents
Papaya Lounge:  Et Cum Spiritu

In this naughty night of nights the holy spirits of divinity, indulgence, and debauchery unite as the Papaya Lounge’s cast of characters get into a weird, yet tasty, pickle of a situation and must munch their way out before your very eyes. Come join your blessedly sinful host, Velvet Q. Jones, played by Sarah McKinney, her non-sexual life partner Nancy Schwartz, played by Kaitlen Osburn, and her personal bartender, psychologist, and witch-wizard, Musty Beaver, played by Janessa Johnsrude, as they present this pickle unto thee and razzle dazzle you with their terrible and simultaneously endearing personalities.

All this against a backdrop of sparkling songs and top-hole guest acts featuring Jesse March, Komboujia, Gini Noggle, Will English, and Jesus Christ himself (played by Nancy Schwartz who is played by Kaitlen Osburn).

The Papaya Lounge experience wouldn’t be complete without the musical stylings of the Papaya house band, the Enthusiastic Consents, featuring some of Humboldt’s finest musicians: Cory Goldman on guitar, Michael (Tofu) Schwartz on drums, Marla Joy on horn(s), Nate Zwerdling on bass, and Tim Randles on keys.

Recommended for audience members 18+.

Papaya Lounge: Et Cum Spiritu was partially developed in residence at Dell’Arte International.

4:30 pm - DEC 17, 2023

Dell'Arte Company &  George Petersen Insurance Present:
Viva Dell'Arte!  A Commedia Feast

The Dell’Arte Company invites you to our gala fundraiser dinner, VIVA DELL'ARTE!

Brett Shuler Catering brings his very best winter feast for the occasion, featuring local farm-to-table fare complemented with local wines and beverages that will leave you feeling cozy and in good humor.

A silent auction offers you the chance to bid on some special holiday gifts and, as the story promises, a celebration of family and friends will leave you all a-glow by the end of the evening.

Your favorite mask characters provide the entertainment as you remember all the great things Dell'Arte brings to Humboldt!


6:30 pm - AUGUST 3, 2023

2023 Baduwa't Festival
Ship of Fools; A Puppet Odyssey

In the Rooney Amphitheater for one night only!

Dell'Arte presents String & Shadow (Olympia, WA) and their new show Ship of Fools: A Giant Puppet Odyssey.

Three mimes set sail from the Port of Styx across the mythical boundary waters connecting the world of the living to the underworld. Aboard a mysteriously sentient ship, they encounter a world of beautiful and strange creatures: hermit crabs carrying houses on their backs, a ghostly humpback whale, and much more.

Under layers of colorful fabric and dancing cardboard, Ship of Fools deals with themes of loss and acceptance, depicting a wondrous unknown and speaking to the power of friendship and love. It is brought to life by 3 mimes, 3 musicians, and 6 puppeteers.

Lawn opens at 6pm. Show at 6:30pm.
Tickets: $12.50 Child/Senior, $20.00 Adult


8:00 pm - AUGUST 4-5, 2023

2023 Baduwa't Festival

Our final event in the Baduwa't Festival features two Dell'Arte alumni, Lucius Robinson and Kevin Duvall!

LuDu Productions brings “Irvinville,” a tragicomedy exploring America’s penchant for self-destruction, even in the glaring face of catastrophe.

It is the story of Jaxson Sallow, a decrepit old boy, and the only person left to maintain the archaic machinery which powered the once great town. Alone in his final moments, he is visited by the being that sent both he and Irvinville on their apocalyptic path: Mary the elephant.

Through a sculpted whirlwind of characters, stories, memories, and lies, the truth of this place is gradually revealed: violence is easy; more than easy, it is natural. This minimalist theatrical production featuring only two performers, bounding between a dozen characters without a prop, set, costumes, or any other technical elements will run for two nights in the Carlo Theater.

Tickets: $20


8pm - July 21-22, 2023

2023 Baduwa't Festival
Mad Labs

Mad Labs celebrates physically based new experimental works in theatre and performance created by Dell’Arte resident artists, alumni, and community artists.

This event is week 3 of the Baduwa't Festival, and features multiple new works and artists that vary in length, style, genre, and subject. The lineup of each night varies. Audiences will experience a range of performance and artistry that reveals the extraordinary and embraces a fresh perspective on ourselves and the world. Featuring work by: Juliana Frick, Julie Douglas, Cleo DeOrio, Alyssa Hughlett, and Tony Fuemmeler.

Performances are in the Carlo Theater. Tickets are $18.


June 15 - 16, 2023


Welcome back! This year you’ve been there with us in the Carlo Theater as the Professional Training Program ensemble has explored the creation of original theater. You’ve witnessed the laughter, the tears, the poetry. You’ve seen them create memorable characters and wrestle with big themes. For their final performances in the school year, students are preparing a smorgasbord of offerings—from dance to mask theater to clown to tragedy—and you are their final teacher! In this show, we invite you to give feedback on what mattered to you as an audience and help them step into the world to make engaging theater.

This show is two nights only! Some themes and content may be inappropriate for younger audiences; parental discretion is advised.


May 4 – 6, 2023


Come laugh with us! This popular performance marks the culmination of a five week study of clown, a unique theatrical form with roots in the circus, vaudeville, and the clowning traditions of cultures across the globe. Prepare to be delighted and charmed by the humanity, honesty, and buoyant laughter of the clowns!

This show always sells out. Advance tickets are recommended.


Mar 23 – 25, 2023


What happens when we get out of balance with the world? Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre’s Professional Training Program ensemble presents “Here Comes The Flood,” an exploration of the realm of the Dramatic Mask.

The desire to control…a tragic event...the actions of one deciding the fate of many.This performance is inspired in part by the 1928 St. Francis Dam Disaster, an often overlooked but important piece of California history. The powerful forces at play in this event feed into the conflict, choice, and consequences in the evening of scenes students have created. What would you do when the flood arrives, what would you choose, what would you stand for? 


Feb 9 – 11 ,2023

A Night of Commedia!

An audacious exploration of our humanity. Known for its distinct masked character types, improvisational play, musicality, acrobatics, and a bold, presentational style, Commedia Dell’Arte is a study of the Human Comedy. Students investigate the classic Italian Commedia archetypes, find their expression in contemporary masked characters, and create original scenes and comic interludes. Witness the hilarious, over-the-top, bawdy, highly physical play of people fighting for their needs for love, food, money, sex and justice.

Performances are high octane and often involve adult themes. Bring your friends, bring your family, but don't bring your little ones – this show will be outrageous and filled with bodily humor.


NightLight: A Winter Solstice Story

US Bank Presents
The Dell'Arte Company Holiday Show & Tour
NightLight: A Winter Solstice Story

This year’s Holiday Show Tour features an original piece of theatre: NightLight: A Winter Solstice Story. In the darkness, there are mysteries, creatures, mischief, and metamorphosis. In the light, there are truths, togetherness, enlightenment, and growth. Or is it the other way around? Join Dell’Arte’s ensemble of storytellers and shapeshifters on a journey to discover what can be illuminated in the darkness. Immerse yourself in a world of shadow and light, sound and silence, where the characters try to find balance in the contrasts of their world. Will they find it in each other or within themselves? Inspired by solstice tales and myths from around the world, NightLight is a seasonal story for our time. NightLight celebrates Dell’Arte’s return to touring in-person live theatre performances to rural communities in Humboldt, Trinity, and Mendocino counties after two years of Covid hibernation.


Jesus Qhrist

Dell'arte International presents:  Jesus Qhrist

It’s a strange time to be a Republican. Actually, scratch that; it’s extremely easy to be a Republican these days. You just have to love the Lord Jesus Christ, watch Fox News so you know what to hate, and vote for the overtly racist and sexist guy with multiple divorces and zero political experience. In the words of Pious Tucker II, how did we get here? Tucker’s just asking questions, after all.

“Jesus Qhrist” is the latest solo performance from Dell’Arte International alumni Christopher Kehoe, using clown and satire to interrogate the forces behind today’s burgeoning so-called “Christian” nationalism. Don’t “stand back and stand by” for this insurrection of a good time!

Content warning: direct quotes from the 45th President of the United States of America.


The 2022 Macabre Cabaret

Dell'arte International presents: The Macabre Cabaret

Back from the Virtual Land of the Dead, the Dell’Arte Company presents “The 2022 Macabre Cabaret” at the Carlo Theatre in Blue Lake, CA at 131 H. Street! This will be a raucous night filled with Eldritch horrors, comedy of the occult, grotesque acts, witchy wonders, and live music. We promise you will leave feeling delightfully doomed! Special guests include the terror-fic Jesse March, the master of demise, Michael Fields, the silver-toungued Donald Forest, dancer of the doomed Cleo DeOrio,…. AND MORE! 


The Bartow Project

Dell'arte International presents: The Bartow Project

The Bartow Project culminates a 3 year creative collaboration between Dell'Arte, the Wiyot Tribe, Native filmmakers, and the HSU Goudi'ni Gallery to present 4 short films to Humboldt County audiences about the art and life of Wiyot artist Rick Bartow. Featuring 2 documentary style shorts, one animation, and one dance video, Artistic Directors Michelle Hernandez (Wiyot) and Zuzka Sabata executive produce this hour-long program featuring 5 Native filmmakers. For details on the concurrent exhibit of Rick Bartow's art at the Goudi'ni Gallery please visit: https://art.humboldt.edu/goudini-native-american-arts-gallery

Project Artistic Directors: Michelle Hernandez & Zuzka Sabata

Film Directors: Chag Lowry, Nanette Kelley, Chantal Jung, Michelle Hernandez, and Samantha Williams-Gray

Featuring: James Lavadour, Charles Froelick, Lillian Pitt, Marnie Atkins, Cleo DeOrio, Evan Grande.


August 27-29, 2021

Bird of the Inner Eye

Dell'Arte International and Arcata Playhouse are proud to present the first workshop production of this new work, with libretto by our Founding Artistic Director, Joan Schirle. This is a true 'theatre of place' event, as Graves spent the last 30 years of his life in Loleta, CA. Tickets are $20 for general admission and $50 for the opening night gala event (for Inner Eye Circle Donors).

July 14-18 2021

2021 Baduwa't Festival: A Gathering of the People

Dell'Arte International and partners present a 5 day-and-night festival  - a culmination of performing arts, music, celebration and connectivity, held on the ancestral lands of the Wiyot Tribe.

The festival will be held in Dadiqhoughuk (Blue Lake) July 14-18 at Dell’Arte’s spaces at 131 H. Street with COVID-19 safety measures in place. Attendance will be limited and festival-goers are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance as much as possible.

November 27, 28 & 29 December 4, 5 & 6

Hansel and Gretel

Dell'Arte's Annual Holiday Touring Show

The Dell’Arte Company’s annual Holiday Show tour, now in its 40th year, will not take a break due to the worldwide pandemic. Instead audiences are invited to usher in the festive season with an adaptation of “Hansel and Gretel,” which will be available through the comfort of their home and devices. 

Crafted for children and families in a way that is accessible, safe and free, this timeless tale will be told through Dell'Arte's unique comic, physical performance lens. Traditionally performed at various schools, theatres, community centers and other spaces throughout the North Coast, performances will instead be streamed through social media and aired on local PBS affiliate KEET-TV.

“At this moment, where crises ­­– from a pandemic to a movement for social and racial justice, to struggling businesses all converge – it is our intent to offer an experience of joy and possibility to the community,” said Dell’Arte Producing Artistic Director Michael Fields. “And in this enduring tale, written in a time of global hardship, it is the children who are the wise ones.”

Adapted from the Brothers Grimm classic fable, “Hansel and Gretel” includes Dell'Arte's trademark physical performance style as well as original music. Fields is the director, Dell’Arte Faculty Member Carlos Gallegos is assistant director, and the third-year MFA students will perform the show.