Saturday, June 16, 2012

A Ring in Brooklyn Premieres at NoHo Arts Center

A Ring in Brooklyn bills itself as 'a frickin' musical' in which a motley handful of unfulfilled, mouthy, gloves-off Brooklynites clash at their 10-year high school reunion, where 'that frickin' ring what drove everyone crazy ten years ago ?!' rears its yeah, whatevuh romantic head yet again.

A Ring in Brooklyn is produced by the Academy for New Musical Theatre at the NoHo Arts Center for a six week run July 28 - September 2. The cast features Jordan Kai Burnett, Gabrielle Wagner, Mike Irizarry, Johnny Cannizzaro, Anna Hanson, Mark Shunock and Matt Valle. It is written by Eric Dodson and Alan Ross Fleishman and directed by Joshua Finkel.

This show was developed for the Victory Theatre in Burbank, and was subsequently selected to be part of Stages Musical Theatre Festival in 2011, and now makes its debut in full production this summer. A Ring in Brooklyn tells the story of high-school alums Gina and Jenn, as they make ever bolder and braver attempts to re-steal a promise ring from the hateful and slutty Tracy. Through the night we are taken back to a senior dance in 1979 where dat frickin' ring first surfaced, and we meet the sweetheart himself, Tommy, whose coolness, poetic notions, and ring not only touch Gina, but it seems every one of his hapless, hopelessly Brooklyn classmates, who are in desperate need of some bright, romantic moonlight.

"It's touching and funny," says ANMT's Artistic Director Elise Dewsberry, "and speaks powerfully about our desperate desire to love and be loved. A Ring in Brooklyn makes me roar with improper catty laughter, but then catches me unexpectedly by the throat and then gives me a sucker punch of sentimentality and truth."

Music director, Ross Källing, is assisting Fleishman in scoring the musical for three-piece band. "We talked about a four or even five or six piece band," says Källing, "but Alan's vocal arrangements are so rich and thick that we made a conscious choice that three pieces can actually accomplish exactly what we need. We've also been working carefully and deliberately to make sure each and every role in the show is defined by range, timbre, and even rhythm, so there's a lot of musical contrast and drama inherent in the score itself, even before the actors start to bring it to life.”

Performances begin July 28 at the NoHo Arts Center. Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00pm, with Sunday matinees at 2:00pm. $30. www.anmt.org

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