Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Fringe Spotlight: A Cuppa Tea Theatre Company's SONGS FOR A NEW WORLD

A Cuppa Tea Theatre Company will make its debut at the Hollywood Fringe Festival with the beautiful Songs For A New World directed by Christopher Maikish and starring Scott Weston, Keith Montanez, Sherry Mandujano and Emily Morris, with percussionist Indigo Smith.

The show is a collection of songs that tell a series of stories through an arc, rather than a continual developing plot. Each song transports us through our American identity, our community, and our desires. They sweep us away into the moments we stand our ground, break our silence, make a bargain, or find our way home. It’s about those life-defining moments we reach and those important decisions we must make.

I asked Christopher what made him want to direct Songs For A New World and why this new company decided to bring its show to the Fringe community. 

“I wouldn’t say our show is fringey in the ‘I’ve got a new one-woman show’ kind of way, of course. But the genesis of this project is that a small group of performers were interested in creating a new theater company in order to collaborate and mount work of their choosing, rather than wait for it to arrive. They saw the Hollywood Fringe as a fantastic community within which to make their debut -- a place of great energy where they could meet loads of new people and make a splash, as well as make artistic alliances.

Songs For A New World is a musical that a few of the company members (and now cast members) have loved for a while. It’s a show with incredibly nuanced material that doesn’t rely on expensive sets to tell compelling, gripping stories. And though Jason Robert Brown’s score debuted in 1995, the conflicts and celebrations he explores have not aged one minute.

It’s a really interesting musical because it’s not a book musical; there are no scenes between songs, but there is such a unity between the songs and they take the audience on a journey that feels like a really complete experience. Each song has a story to tell that is compelling and specific. I get emotional in rehearsals while directing, the songs are so darn good! And I’ve got actors with powerful voices who care about these stories -- it shows.”

A Cuppa Tea Theatre Company describes itself as a place where artists from all walks of life can bring their work to connect, interact, collaborate, and produce the things they dream of, creating a culture that supports artistic freedom. Whether art is your work, your hobby, or something you’ve never done before, ACTTC is interested in what you have to offer.

Welcome to the LA theatre world ACTTC. You couldn
t make your debut in a better place than at the Fringe.

Songs for a New World is produced by Scott Stevens and Gino Marconi and features choreography by Heidi Buehler, musical direction by Jim Blackett, scenery by Robert Selander, and costumes by Isabel Mandujano.

You can also check out their Kickstarter campaign and hear one of the songs in the final minutes of the video. 

June 6 – 28, 2014
Complex Theatres (East Theatre)
6476 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90038
Tickets: $12.50

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