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Gloucester Stage kicks off the 2013 season with Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik’s Spring Awakening from June 20 through July 14 in the air-conditioned comfort of Gloucester Stage Company at 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA. This landmark musical with book and lyrics by Steven Sater and music by Duncan Sheik is based on Frank Wedekind’s 1891 German expressionist play about the trials and tribulations, and the exhilaration of the teen years. Sater and Sheik’s energetic and powerful reimagining of the play for the Broadway stage earned 8 Tony Awards in 2007 including Best Musical, Best Book of A Musical, Best Original Score, Best Direction of A Musical, Best Performance by A Featured Actor in A Musical, Best Choreography, Best Orchestrations and Best Lighting Design of A Musical. With its electrifying and hauntingly beautiful score, Spring Awakening traces the sexual awakening of several youths in an atmosphere of repression. Their journey from adolescence to adulthood is explored with poignancy and passion. Spring Awakening is directed by Gloucester Stage Artistic Director Eric C. Engel with musical direction by Catherine Stornetta and choreography by Jodi Leigh Allen. The cast of 13 welcomes back three Gloucester Stage veterans: Melody Madarasz from 2012’s Crimes of the Heart as Wendla, Paul Farwell from 2012’s Carnival and Amelia Broome from 2005’s My Old Lady play all the adult male and female roles respectively in Spring Awakening. The remaining ten cast members make their Gloucester Stage debut: Lydia Baldwin as Anna; Jordan J. Ford as Hanschen; Meghan LaFlam as Thea; Sarah Oakes Muirhead as Ilse; Ross Mumford as Moritz; Mary Nepi as Marthe; Andrew Oberstein as Georg; Chris Renalds as Ernst; Phil Tayler as Melchior; and Daniel Scott Walton as Otto.
The performance schedule for Spring Awakening is Thursday, June 20 through Saturday, June 22 at 8 pm; Wednesday, June 26 through Saturday, June 29 at 8 pm; Wednesday, July 3 at 7pm; Thursday, July 4, Friday. July 5, and Saturday, July 6 at 8 pm: Wednesday, July 10 through Saturday, July 13 at 8 pm; Saturday matinees at 3 pm on June 22, June 29, July 6 & July 13and Sunday performances at 4 pm on June 23, June 30, July 7 & July 14. A limited amount of discount tickets are available to Cape Ann residents for all Wednesday and Thursday 8 pm performances. For these performances only, Cape Ann residents can purchase discounted tickets for $20. Advance reservations are strongly suggested to ensure tickets at the discounted price. Year round Cape Ann residents must identify themselves as Cape Ann residents when making a reservation and proof of residency must be presented at the box office the night of the performance. The 3 pm Saturday matinee on June 22 is a special Pay What You Can matinee. For this Saturday matinee only the ticket price is Pay What You Can. Following the 4 pm performance on Sunday, June 23, audiences are invited to a free post show discussion with the artists from Spring Awakening. Gloucester Stage is handicapped accessible. Ticket prices are $40 for all performances. Senior citizen & student tickets are $35 for all performances. For reservations or further information, call the Gloucester Stage Box Office at 978-281-4433 or visit www.gloucesterstage.com.
Tony Award winning Spring Awakening co- creators Steven Sater (Book and Lyrics) and Duncan Sheik (Music and Orchestrations) have collaborated on other projects including the NY premiere of Umbrage at HERE, Nero: Another Golden Rome at The Magic Theatre, and The Nightingale, a musical based on the Hans Christian Andersen classic, commissioned by Martin McCallum, work-shopped both at the O’Neill Musical Theatre Conference and La Jolla Playhouse. Mr. Sater is the lyricist for Sheik’s critically-acclaimed album Phantom Moon (Nonesuch), and together the two wrote the songs for Michael Mayer’s feature film A Home at the End of the World as well as the independent feature Brother’s Shadow.
Steven Sater’s plays include the long-running Carbondale Dreams, Perfect for You, Doll (Rosenthal Prize, Cincinnati Playhouse), Umbrage (Steppenwolf New Play Prize), A Footnote to the Iliad (New York Stage and Film, The Miniature Theatre of Chester), Asylum (Naked Angels), Murder at the Gates, commissioned by Eye of the Storm, In Search of Lost Wings (Sanford Meisner) and a reconceived version of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, with music by Laurie Anderson, which played London’s Lyric Hammersmith and toured internationally. Mr. Sater is co-creator and Executive Producer, with Paul Reiser, of pilots for both NBC and Sony/FX, and has developed two projects for HBO, and a pilot for Showtime (with Reiser). He is also at work, with Jessie Nelson, on a feature film for New Line and together they have recently completed a rewrite of the Warner Bros animated feature, C Horse. Mr. Sater also continues to work as a lyricist with a variety of composers in the pop/rock world.
In addition to writing the music for Spring Awakening, which received a critically acclaimed Lincoln Center American Songbook Concert staging, Grammy award nominated singer–songwriter Duncan Sheik has composed original music for the Public Theatre’s Shakespeare in the Park production of Twelfth Night. His self-titled debut album, which was an enormous popular and critical success, introduced the hit singles Barely Breathing and She Runs Away, and spent 30 weeks on the Billboard 200. Other albums include Humming, Daylight, and White Limousine. His film soundtracks include: Great Expectations, The Saint,Teaching Mrs.Tingle, Three to Tango, What a Girl Wants, Transamerica and A Body Goes Down. Mr. Sheik composed and produced the original score for the feature film A Home at the End of the World, directed by Michael Mayer and starring Colin Farrell.
Director Eric C. Engel is in his seventh year as Gloucester Stage Artistic Director following two seasons as Producing Director and three as a guest director. Most recently at Gloucester Stage he directed the 2012 productions of Round and Round the Garden, Carnival and Nine Circles. In 2011 he directed Living Together, The Most Happy Fella, the world premiere of Last Day and the return of Trying. In 2010 he directed Table Manners, the world premiere of Tender and Trying. In 2009 he directed Gloucester Stage productions of The Breath of Life and The Goat, Or Who is Sylvia? His Gloucester Stage directorial debut was 2002’s The Subject was Roses. Other Gloucester Stage directing credits include the Elliot Norton Award winning Collected Stories, Israel Horovitz’s My Old Lady, Long Day’s Journey into Night, Spinning into Butter, The Heidi Chronicles, The Belle of Amherst, Going To St. Ives, Doubt: A Parable and the world premiere of Our Son’s Wedding.
Mr. Engel has been a director and arts administrator in the Boston area for over 20 years, and is currently Director of Memorial Hall/Sanders Theatre and College Theater Venues in the Office for the Arts at Harvard University. In 2009 he directed The Year of Magical Thinking at Boston’s Lyric Stage Company which transferred to Gloucester Stage in summer 2009. He has directed over 75 productions for numerous companies, including Lyric Stage., SpeakEasy Stage Company, Súgán Theatre Company, and as an artist in residence at Harvard University, Emerson College, The Boston Conservatory and Brandeis University, where he earned his MFA. He has directed the world premieres of Alan Brody’s The Housewives of Mannheim at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, John Kuntz’s Miss Price at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, and Sing Me to Sleep at the Coyote Theatre, which received the Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Production by A Fringe Company. As a founding member, Managing Director and Resident Director for The Nora Theatre Company, Mr. Engel staged the critically acclaimed productions of Death of a Salesman which received Elliot Norton Awards for Outstanding Director and Outstanding Production by A Small Resident Company, Equus, Morning’s at Seven and Orphans. Recently, for Boston’s Publick Theatre, he directed the East Coast Premiere of Bill Cain’s 9 Circles and Entertaining Mr. Sloane (his fourth Elliot Norton Award-winning production).
Musical Director Catherine Stornetta makes her Gloucester Stage debut with Spring Awakening. Ms. Stornetta has been a musical director for Forbidden Broadway, Forbidden Hollywood, and Forbidden Christmas for many years and has performed all over the country, all around the world, and on cruise ships circumnavigating the globe. She has orchestrated both Forbidden Broadway and Forbidden Christmas and as a result has conducted the Detroit, Hartford, Winnipeg, North Carolina, Rochester, Syracuse, and Adelaide (Australia) Symphonies. She composed the score for the Cable ACE-award winning documentary Christa McAuliffe, Teacher in Space, produced for the Arts and Entertainment Network Biography series, and she has either arranged or written music for several shows: Intriguing People (for People Magazine), 12 Angry Reindeer, Reindeer Games, The Seasons, and The All-of-a-Kind Family. She has recently become a resident musical director at The Lyric Stage in Boston where she has in recent months done Animal Crackers, Ain’t Misbehavin’, Avenue Q (IRNE award), and performed parts of the Diabelli Variations for their January production of 33 Variations. She has worked extensively as a composer, musical director, arranger and teacher in Boston. She was a student of Darius Milhaud and Claude Frank, and on occasion, a piano soloist with the Boston Pops.
Choreographer Jodi Leigh Allen returns to Gloucester Stage after her choreography debut with 2012’s Carnival. She received her B.F.A. in Dance Performance from Shenandoah University in Virginia and her M.F.A. in Dance and Choreography from The University of Michigan Ann Arbor. Ms. Allen’s professional performing credits include performing in Julie Taymor’s Die Zauberfote (The Magic Flute) and Romeo et Juliette at The Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. She has been a company member of Malashock Dance and Company in California and was privileged to study and perform the Tango with actor Robert Duvall. Currently, she is the Movement Coordinator and Instructor at the A.R.T/MXAT Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University. She has been a dance instructor and choreographer for Harvard University’s Dance Program for the last ten years. Ms. Allen holds the title of Associate Professor/Director of Dance in the Professional Music Department at Berklee College of Music where she is building a Movement for Musicians program.
Spring Awakening runs from June 20 through July 14 at Gloucester Stage, 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA. The performance schedule for Spring Awakening is Thursday, June 20 through Saturday, June 22 at 8 pm; Wednesday, June 26 through Saturday, June 29 at 8 pm; Wednesday, July 3 at 7 pm; Thursday, July 4, Friday. July 5, and Saturday, July 6 at 8 pm: Wednesday, July 10 through Saturday, July 13 at 8 pm; Saturday matinees at 3 pm on June 22, June 29, July 6 & July 13 and Sunday performances at 4 pm on June 23, June 30, July 7 & July 14. Ticket prices are $40 for all performances. Senior citizen & student tickets are $35 for all performances. For reservations or further information, call the Gloucester Stage Box Office at 978-281-4433 or visit www.gloucesterstage.com.