Buying a ticket for In Heart Theatre’s summer production gets you nine plays for the price of one.

"Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays," opening June 28, consists of nine short plays written in 2008 in reaction to California’s Proposition 8, which outlawed gay marriage.

"Brian Shnipper realized he wanted ... to do his part," said Amanda Pyfferoen, who is directing the show. "He contacted some of his playwright friends and said, ‘Can you write a short play?’"

Since the show’s debut off-Broadway in 2011, some of the short plays have been dropped, while others have been added. And even though gay marriage is now legal across the country, the collection still resonates, Pyfferoen said.

"I think people will be surprised how relatable it still is today," she said. "I realize a lot of these plays were written six to 10 years ago. But it’s not just about same-sex marriage."

Rather, she said, "Standing on Ceremony" fits a pattern of In Heart productions.

"Love is something that has happened in all of the productions we have done so far," she said. "That is a core philosophy of what we do."

For this production, Pyfferoen has recruited a who’s who of local actors: Melissa Adams-Goihl, Alex Beerling, Dominique Jones, Lisa Modry, and Sue Schnell, as well as David Hennessey from the Commonweal Theatre in Lanesboro, where Pyfferoen was an intern last year.

Everyone plays at least two parts, and some are in four or five of the short scenes, Pyfferoen said. Because so many of the actors knew each other and had worked together, the cast was able to hit the ground running. "The chemistry was already there," she said.

For this show, In Heart performs for the first time at Peace United Church of Christ. And although the hall has a stage, the show will be presented in the round. "It’s more intimate that way," Pyfferoen said.

What: "Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays" by In Heart Theatre

When: 7:30 p.m. June 28 through July 1

Where: Peace United Church of Christ, 1503 Second Ave. NE

Tickets: $20; reserve through email at

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