Monday, May 23, 2016

MUSICAL NEWS for Monday, May 23, 2016

Alison Woods as Ariel in The LIttle Mermaid.
Photo credit: Bruce Bennett courtesy of Theatre Under The Stars.


La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts presents The Little Mermaid, featuring music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater, book by Doug Wright, June 3 – 26. Musical direction is by Colin R. Freeman, choreography by John MacInnis and the show is directed by Glenn Casale. The cast includes Alison Woods as Ariel, Melvin Abston (Sebastian), Adam Garst (Flounder), Fred Inkley (King Triton), Eric Kunze (Prince Eric), Tracy Lore (Ursula), Jeff Skowron (Chef Louis), Jamie Torcellini (Scuttle), Scott T. Leiendecker (Flotsam), Jeffrey Christopher Todd (Jetsam), and Time Winters (Grimsby) along with Ashley Anderson, Kim Arnett, Kristine Bennett, Marjorie Failoni, Melissa Glasgow, Devon Hadsell, Michael McGurk, Amanda Minano, Dennis O’Bannon, Marco Ramos, Aaron Ronelle, James Shackelford, Brian Steven Shaw and Tro Shaw.

New Musicals Inc. and 3-D Theatricals have announced the cast for their upcoming staged reading of the new musical Invisible, book by David Hollingsworth, lyrics & music by David Orris. The reading will be co-directed by 3-D Theatrical’s artistic director T.J. Dawson and NMI’s artistic director Elise Dewsberry; with music direction by Ron Barnett; sound design by Julie Ferrin; and puppet design by Patricio Wolovich. The show is a John-Hughes-esque musical theatre re-interpretation of the HG Wells classic The Invisible Man with a totally original pop/rock score that takes great joy in paying homage to popular music and popular cultural tropes of the era. Featured in the cast are Michael Thomas Grant, Daniel Amerman, Ashley Argota, Jordan Goodsell, Christie Brooke, Natalie MacDonald, Jay Cramer, Luke Klipp, Luke Matthew Simon, and Daniel Mills.The presentations will take place on Monday, June 6 (8pm) at the Colony Theatre in Burbank; and on Tuesday, June 7 (8pm) at the 3-D Theatricals Rehearsal Hall in Anaheim. Visit to learn more.

Musical Theatre Guild has announced its 2016-2017 season. For the last twenty years, MTG has presented a wide variety of rarely seen musicals including west coast and Los Angeles premieres from such composers as Stephen Sondheim, Jason Robert Brown, Maury Yeston, and Aherns and Flaherty. MTG also partners with the Los Angeles Music Center’s Education Division to expand their mission of preserving the genre of Musical Theatre by presenting in-school programming to teach a new generation about this original American art form. Season includes:

Sept 25, 2016: Promises, Promises
Nov 13, 2016: The Spitfire Grill
February 2, 2017: Hallelujah, Baby!
May 7, 2017: State Fair
Season tickets go on sale in late June and single tickets will be available in July. All performances take place at the Alex Theatre in Glendale.

Acclaimed company Robot Teammate & The Accidental Party returns with the world premiere of their second scripted musical, an epic dystopian comedy titled Thug Tunnel. Somewhere in the not-so-distant-future, greed, pollution, and The Ancient Fire of Death and Despair has made Earth's surface uninhabitable, forcing the human race to survive underground in a criminal society known as Thug Tunnel. No one dares defy the violent rulers Breakin' Necks Becky (Nikki Muller) and Stabby Rick (Dave Reynolds) until a young Tunnelborn named Petunia (Kat Primeau) and her lovesick sidekick Panther (Chris Bramante) decide to make a break for the world above. Aided by (Miles Crosman) an old Tunnel sage, and the phosphorescent Yogurt Stew (Molly Dworsky), Petunia and Panther journey through the Double Darkness, into the Maze of Infinite Confusion, and past the Great Grate to see if life on Earth's surface is possible once again. June 9 – 20 at Sacred Fools Theater Main Stage.

Book, lyrics, and music were conceived through improvisations and refined during writing sessions with the Robot Teammate ensemble, led by director Molly Dworsky. Musical accompaniment is by Sam Johnides and Branson NeJame plus live band members Matt Campbell, Dan Macken, and Christopher Sousa. For more about Robot Teammate, go to

Sugimation Productions announces the world premiere of Broadway Noir, created by Dan Sugimoto, the musical director who brought you the CAC Studios shows ChicabaRENT, Project Mayhem and the 2015 Fringe Best in Cabaret & Variety, Thenadier’s Inn #NotLesMis, Broadway Noir is an original musical comedy that reveals the black heart of show biz. Start with your detective tale. Add a few dames. A dash of comedy. A few coppers. Some good, old-fashioned drama. A little song and dance. And finally toss back a few murders for your chaser. That’s the Broadway Noir cocktail, a combination you’re going to want to taste for yourself. Performances take place at Three Clubs, June 2 – 19 (with 2 previews in Santa Monica May 26 & 31). Come dressed in your ‘40s finest!

A new sci-fi musical comedy The Cure to Mortality by Katy Erin will debut at the Fringe June 11 – 25 at the Asylum @ The McCadden Theater. The futuristic musical farce explores what happens to society when science takes the possibility of eternal life seriously. Erin will also star in the show, along with Molly Gilman (who directs), Sandra Diana Cantu, Mary Ann Pianka, and Brookelyn Rose. Music by Katy Erin and Christoffer Schunk. The show opens with a pay-what-you-can preview on June 5 prior to its run. Tickets:

Also at the Asylum @ McCadden Theatre, internationally-recognized classical pianist David Wheatley will appear in a genre-defying concert experience, A Useful Life in C Major. Wheatley’s repertoire ranges from classical favorites and original compositions to jazz, country, R&B and everything in between. The performance showcases his versatility at the keyboard as well as the range of the instrument itself. Visits from friends, surprising storytelling, and stand-up comedy make the show elevated enough for adults but friendly for the whole family. June 5 – 26. Tickets:

Theatre Unleashed is bringing back its critically acclaimed crowd favorite A Feast of Snacks to the Fringe at the Lounge Theater, June 3 – 25. This anthology of four bite-sized comedic musicals written by Michael Gordon Shapiro and directed by Julia Plostnieks, include:

In The Charmed Life (Co-written with Mark Harvey Levine), Margie has experienced unnaturally good luck her entire life. One afternoon she discovers the source of her good luck: a secret admirer, who for years has been covertly making her life better.

In Climb the Smallest Mountain, miniature golf legend Darius “Duke” McGovern seems poised to win his seventh world championship until a competitor finds a loophole in the rules that allows him to disrupt Duke's game.

In HMS Headwind, the merry crewmembers of an 18th century British frigate have one problem: their failure to capture a single enemy vessel.

And in a brand new piece, The Escape Artist, making its world premiere, the overly confident Scotty shows us the ropes of getting out of jury duty…until he meets a stubborn judge and a potential rival.

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