FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEACTORS’ THEATRE TO PRESENT AWARD-WINNING WEST MICHIGAN PREMIERES IN 2013-2014 SEASON
On Thursday, May 23, 2013, prior to the opening of their final production of the thirty-second season, Actors’ Theatre Grand Rapids (www.atgr.org) unveiled the lineup of productions scheduled for its thirty-third season. All of the productions scheduled for the 2013-14 season will be West Michigan premieres and include two musicals and three contemporary plays. Jonathan Clausen, Director of Development and Marketing, has this to say about the upcoming season:
“2013-14 is going to be an exciting season because it’s so rich in the variety of programing. Our artistic selection committee, headed by Ellie Frances (seen recently on stage in [title of show]), came to us with a group of selections that are not only artistically challenging and fun, but which will appeal to a wide variety of theatre-goers.
This year, we’re proud to bring a contemporary classic to the stage for the first time in our area with Love! Valour! Compassion! As we looked at crafting this season, we wanted to make sure that we weren’t limiting ourselves artistically by not looking at great plays from the last two decades that, for one reason or another, might not have seen the stage in West Michigan. Combine that with a rock re-imagining of American history (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), the sexy but fascinating character study Venus in Fur, an emerging contemporary classic in God of Carnage, and a beautiful musical based on a true story (Grey Gardens) and you have a season that is rich, interesting and really, really fun to produce.”
The five productions scheduled for the 2013-14 season are as follows:
Love! Valour! Compassion! by Terrence McNally – September 19-28, 2013
In Duchess County, New York eight friends gather over the course of three summer weekends in a house belonging to aging Broadway choreographer Gregory and his younger partner Bobby, who is blind. Friendship, love, life and death take center stage in this award-winning contemporary classic by renowned playwright Terrance McNally, author of Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, ‘Lips Together, Teeth Apart’, and Corpus Christi, among others.
The production will be directed by veteran actor, teacher and choreographer Jolene Frankey, who will be making her directorial debut for Actors’.
Venus in Fur by David Ives – December 12-21, 2013
Playwright and director Thomas is desperate to find a female lead for his new adaptation of the classic 19th century sadomasochistic tale, Venus in Furs, when, at the last minute, an actress barges in and requests an audition. Seemingly utterly wrong for the part, Thomas is intrigued by her strange command of the role and her surprising seductiveness. Alone together, their audition starts to blur the lines between play and reality. The tables turn and what was once a game becomes something much more serious.
Venus in Fur will be directed by Michelle Urbane, whose most recent directing credits include [title of show] (2013), The Sweetest Swing in Baseball (2011) and Mr. Marmalade (2010).
Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, a new musical - February 6-22, 2014
Meet Andrew Jackson : our seventh President and our first political maverick. He kicked British butt, shafted the Indians and put a hurt on the Spaniards all in the name of these United States – who cares if he didn’t have permission? From his humble beginnings in Tennessee to his days as Commander-in-Chief, the tongue-in-cheek Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson reimagines its main character as a contemporary rock star and, in doing so, examines and lampoons the cult-of-personality dynamics of the contemporary political scene.
The musical will be directed by Kyle Amanda Dutkiewicz, who previously won a Grand Award for musical direction with the Actors’ production of The Wild Party (2008).
God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza – April 17-26, 2014
A playground altercation between their eleven year-old boys brings two couples together in an attempt to resolve the matter. Initially diplomacy prevails but as the evening progresses (and alcohol flows…), the gloves start to come off in a comically explosive landslide that will leave the couples with more than just their progressive principles in tatters.
God of Carnage will be directed by Tom Kaechele whose most recent directing credits for Actors’ include the Next Fall (2012), The Little Dog Laughed (2010), and The Lieutenant of Inishmore (2009).
Grey Gardens, the musical – June 5-14, 2014
Equally hilarious and heartbreaking, Grey Gardens is a musical based on the cult classic documentary of the same name, which explores the true story of Big Edie and Little Edie Bouvier Beale - aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. From glamorous beginnings to a penniless, co-dependent existence, Grey Gardens paints an intimate and not unsympathetic portrait of two of the 20th century’s most notorious recluses. Grey Gardens is written by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, and lyrics by Michael Korie.
The musical will be directed by award-winning director and Actors’ Theatre founder, Fred Sebulske, and will mark the 60th main stage production he has directed for the organization.
Season Tickets may be purchased online at www.atgr.org/subscribe or by calling the Actors’ Theatre Business Office at (616) 234-3968. A special discounted rate is available through July 15th.