Backstage Pass

The Backstage Pass student matinee program at UNK is designed to offer students and instructors from across Nebraska an opportunity to combine the experience of live theatre with the benefits of theatre education.  This program typically targets high school students, but we are happy to include elementary and middle school students whenever our productions are appropriate for younger audiences.  Through this experience, we hope to inspire a greater appreciation for the Theatre Arts in students of all ages.

Every Backstage Pass matinee event consists of a performance of the current UNK Theatre & Dance production, immediately followed by a brief Q&A session with the production's cast, crew, director, and designers.  The Q&A session is an informal opportunity for students (and instructors) to ask any questions that come to mind regarding the production, the UNK Theatre & Dance program, or Theatre in general.

With admission to each Backstage Pass matinee event set at only $1 per person (students and chaperones), we hope to make live Theatre more accessible to students in schools across the state.   

While detailed information about each individual Backstage Pass event is e-mailed to our Nebraska High School contacts (drama instructors) prior to each event, we welcome instructors to review the information here, and submit reservations at any time - no need to wait.  To be sure we know who to expect, we do require advance reservations for all school groups, and any individual students attending on their own.

To make a reservation for a Backstage Pass event at any time, feel free to contact Susan Deiger, or 


2022-2023 Backstage Pass/Student Matinee Events:

Performance Title

Show times and information


by Patrick Hamilton  

Student Matinee:  October 6, 2022
10:00am  |  Miriam Drake Theatre

Gaslight is a Victorian thriller telling the story of a young wife whose fragile mental state hangs in the balance between her potentially dangerous husband and an eccentric detective claiming to have all the answers.

The Haunting of Hill House  

by F. Andrew Leslie

from the novel by
Shirley Jackson

Student Matinee:  November 17, 2022
10:00am  |  Studio Theatre  (seating is limited!)

In The Haunting of Hill House, a group of "psychically receptive" strangers is brought together in Hill House, a brooding mansion known as a place of evil.  Led by the learned Dr. Montague, the visitors have come to probe the secrets of the old house and to draw forth the mysterious powers that it allegedly possesses - powers which have brought madness and death to those who have lived therein in the past.


Student Matinee:  March 3, 2023
10:00am  |  Miriam Drake Theatre

The annual spring dance concert at UNK features original works choreographed and performed by UNK students, dance faculty, and guest artists.


Lucky Stiff 

book & lyrics by
Lynn Ahrens

music by
Stephen Flaherty

Student Matinee:  May 4, 2023  
10:00am  |  Miriam Drake Theatre

Lucky Stiff is a madcap, hilarious romp of a musical that follows Harry Witherspoon’s journey from England to Monte Carlo...with a rather unusual traveling companion. Based on Michael Butterworth’s novel, The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo, Harry receives the unexpected news that he has inherited a fortune from his late Uncle Anthony, on the condition that he takes Anthony’s dead body on a special trip to Monte Carlo. If Harry fails, the money will go to the Universal Dog Home of Brooklyn. However, also hot on the tail of Uncle Anthony’s money is Rita, Anthony’s lover with whom he embezzled $6 million behind her husband’s back. And hot on Rita’s trail is her brother Vinnie, who has been blamed for the crime! With mistaken identities, love interests, disguises, farcical chases, and an omnipresent corpse, Lucky Stiff is an offbeat murder mystery with a difference.

For further information about the Backstage Pass matinee program, or to be included on the e-mail list, please contact Susan Deiger.