Bay Street Theater’s “The Wave” Explores A Social Experiment Gone Awry

John Kovach in "The Wave."
John Kovach in "The Wave." Photo: Courtesy Bay Street Theater

Bay Street Theater & Sag Harbor Center for the Arts has announced The Wave, which runs from April 5-8 with a special additional Saturday matinee performance.

The Wave

This live theatrical production stars Jon Kovach and is based on the true story of Ron Jones. The Wave, co-written by Kovach and Jones, is a narrative about the young 1960’s California history teacher (a young Jones) who wanted to deter his students from the allure of totalitarianism. His daring social experiment succeeded beyond his wildest expectations, creating a fascist state on campus. Replete with salutes and Gestapo-like informants, 30 students grew to 200 as this social experiment in fascism spiraled out of control and went awry. The experiment illustrates how individual freedoms can be quickly abandoned and willfully repressed for collective goals and racism as happened in the rise of Nazi Germany and the treatment of the Jews during World War II. Additionally, Jones will be present at each performance for talkbacks with the audience.

As Todd Strasser’s novel of the same name is frequently required reading in most US high schools, Bay Street Theater is offering a school performance on Thursday, April 6 at 9 a.m. with $5 tickets for all school groups. Students will also have the opportunity to ask questions about the performance in post-show talkbacks with Kovach and Jones.

Bay Street Theater & Sag Harbor Center for the Arts is located at 1 Bay Street, Sag Harbor. For tickets and more information on The Wave, call 631-725-9500 and visit

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