What’s opening this week?

Back in town, and this is a slightly overdue edition of Opening This Week. Here’s a look at what’s coming up in Central Florida theater:

  • The Heiress, Mad Cow Theatre
  • Man Is the Only Animal Who Blushes … Or Needs To!, Winter Park Playhouse
  • Manuscript, I.D.10-t Productions
  • For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Raimbow is Enuf, Breakthrough Theatre
  • Boogie Wonderland, Show Palace Dinner Theatre
  • Footloose, Ocala Civic Theatre
  • Rent, Theatre Winter Haven
  • The Littles, Surfside Youth Players
  • Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp, Pinocchio’s Marionette Theater
  • Schoolhouse Rock Live, Jr., Henegar Center for the Arts

And the full story:

The Heiress, Mad Cow Theatre:

Mad Cow Theatre announces The Heiress, the psychological drama of love, innocence and betrayal by Ruth Goetz and Augustus Goetz.  Directed by Michael Marinaccio, The Heiress will run from July 23 through August 22 at Mad Cow Theatre, 105 S. Magnolia Ave in Downtown Orlando.  Opening night is July 23.  All performances begin at 7:30pm. Tickets to The Heiress may be purchased online at www.madcowtheatre.com by phone at 407.297.8788  or in person at the Mad Cow Theatre box office.

Loosely based on the classic Henry James novel Washington Square, The Heiress “alternately pierces the mind with its wit and shakes up the emotions with its brutality,” according to The New York Times, and has achieved international success both on stage and screen. Set in 1850s New York, a widower and his daughter go about their lives, each craving love but powerless to express their needs. Into their home comes a suitor of great charm who awakens the daughter’s spirit and brightens her world – and may or may not be a fortune hunter.

Three-time Tony-Award winning, The Heiress is a romantic and tragic story of love, betrayal and revenge in 1850’s New York.

The cast includes many Mad Cow favorites, such as Jennifer Christa Palmer as Catherine and Mark Edward Smith as Dr. Sloper, with Sarah Jane Fridlich as Marion, Elizabeth Judith as Mrs. Montgomery, Steven Lane as Morris, Marion Marsh as Mrs. Almond, Alexander Mrazek as Arthur, Samantha Faith O’Hare as Maria, and Karel Wright as Livinia Penniman.  Scenic Design is by Cindy White Art Co, Costume Design by Jim Walker, and Lighting by John Hemphill.

WHO:  Mad Cow Theatre
WHAT:  The Heiress, by Ruth and Augustus Goetz
WHEN: Friday July 23rd – Sunday August 22nd, 2010
WHERE: Mad Cow Theatre, 105 South Magnolia Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801
Thu & Fri evenings: $24 regular; $22 seniors/students
Sat evenings & Sun matinees: $26 regular; $24 seniors/students
Special Preview Performances on July 21 and July 22 @ 7:30p, tickets $10
Special Industry Night performance on Mondays August 2 and August 16 at 7:30p.  Tickets are $15. Call the Box Office at 407.297.8788 for details.

Tickets may be purchased by calling the Mad Cow Theatre Box Office at 407.297.8788 or online at http://www.madcowtheatre.com/. Group rates are available for parties of 10 or more.

Man Is the Only Animal Who Blushes … Or Needs To!, Winter Park Playhouse:

Mark Twain visits the Winter Park Playhouse July 23 through August 1

You don’t have to go far to visit with one of America’s favorite icons this summer! Local favorite and veteran actor Michael Edwards will bring American author and humorist Mark Twain to life in his original one-man show Man Is the Only Animal Who Blushes … Or Needs To! July 23 – August 1, 2010 at the Winter Park Playhouse.  Performances are Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30pm and Saturday and Sunday afternoons at 2pm. Tickets for all performances are $25.

Mr. Edwards has worked professionally as an actor, director and artistic director in regional theatres across the country for over 40 years.  He is a proud member of Actors Equity Association, The Screen Actors Guild, and The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.  He has worked alongside such luminaries as George Chakiris, Mimi Hines, Cherry Jones, Brian Dennehy, Dawn Wells, Pat Hingle and the late Nancy Walker.

“Michael Edwards’ ability to portray Mark Twain is uncanny,” confirms Roy Alan, Artistic Director of the Winter Park Playhouse, “Michael has spent a lifetime studying every nuance of Mr. Twain’s speech, movement and appearance making his performance among the most authentic characterizations I have ever seen.”

This entertaining show is an evening of wit, song and good old-fashioned home-spun humor and, at $25 a ticket, is one of the best values this summer!

To book tickets call the Winter Park Playhouse box office at 407-645-0145 or visit www.winterparkplayhouse.org. The Winter Park  Playhouse is located at 711-C Orange Avenue Winter Park, FL 32789.

Manuscript, I.D.10-t Productions:

I.D.10-t Productions presents ‘Manuscript’ by Paul Grellong

I.D.10-t Productions, winner of 2007 and 2008 Sold Out Awards at the Orlando International Fringe Festival, brings Paul Grellong’s fascinating thriller Manuscript, a story of suspense, betrayal, literary ambitions and the lengths people will go to make it in the ruthless world of publishing. It’s winter break; the parents are out of town and in the bedroom of a Brooklyn Heights brownstone, plans for an eventful night are about to unfold.  David, an aspiring novelist, and his best friend Chris await the arrival of Chris’ new college girlfriend, Elizabeth. She is a famous new author, fresh out of high school with a new book. As the anticipation builds, it is evident that this night will be far from ordinary. Little is what it seems, and no one can be trusted as plot twists pile up, and the play hurtles towards a surprise ending.

The play stars Derek Angell, Daniel Baldock and Danielle Alagna and is directed by David Meneses.

One novel, three friends, a bottle of Scotch and a few skeletons in the closet. Manuscript runs 07/23, 07/24, 07/30, 07/31 at 8:30 PM at Art’s Sake Studios located at 680 Clay Street, Winter Park, FL. For tickets email reservations@id10tproductions.com or call (407) 408-3794.

About I.D.10-t Productions:
I.D.10-t Productions’ team combines the training, experience and talent of local dramatic artists with the purpose of providing quality entertainment in the Orlando area. Previous productions include Orlando International Fringe Festival’s Shuffling Strait, Sexual Confines, Mr. Marmalade and Art’s Sake Studios’ Play de Luna. Our artists remain active at Art’s Sake Studios and can be seen at the most renowned venues in the Orlando area with regular producing, directing and acting responsibilities.


For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Raimbow is Enuf, Breakthrough Theatre:

The Breakthrough Theatre of Winter Park will present the Ntozake Shange drama For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf from July 23-26 and July 30-August 1, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm and Sundays at 3 pm, with an Industry Night on Monday, July 26, at 8 pm.

Pain. Passion. Fear. Love. Hope.

For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf has excited, inspired, and transformed audiences all over the country. The play reveals what it is to be of color and female in the twentieth century. For Colored Girls ... deals with themes of love, abandonment, rape, and domestic violence in vivid and powerful language that resonates with unusual beauty in its fierce message to the world.

The production features Charmion Sparrow, Debra Foxx, Evelyn Tyler, Felichia Wright, Kisha Peart, Shellita Boxie, and Vanessa Valdez, and is being directed by Daniel Boisrond.

Ticket Prices are $18.00 general admission, $15.00 senior citizens, and $12.00 students.

For box office inquiries or futher information, please call 407-920-4034 or visit http://www.breakthroughtheatre.com/.

Boogie Wonderland, Show Palace Dinner Theatre:

When three space travelers crash land on a strange planet that just happens to look like a discotheque (complete with mirror balls, dry ice and moon rock dance platforms) you’ll realize that Boogie Wonderland isn’t your average jukebox revue! Our travelers become part of a strange new world where disco is king and every night is a marvelous party.  Shake your groove thing down to the Show Palace to reserve tickets for this all singing, all dancing musical journey into a fabulous disco dimension!

This all-new show features some of the best hits of the Disco era, as well as enough pop culture references and good-natured parody to fill even the tightest pair of polyester bell bottoms. This show attempts to re-create the television specials of the 70’s while turning the genre on its end by setting it in the final frontier. It also pays homage to the sounds, personalities and kitsch that made this decade a time to remember and forget.

Boogie Wonderland stars Sara DelBeato*, Scott Daniel* and Lauren Gemelli as our intrepid crew of space travelers along with Ella Glasgow, Joshua Hayes, Alex Covington, David Tanciar*, Dean-Carlo Grant, Erika Scott and Christy Doherty as the citizens of Boogie Wonderland. Adrienne Bergeron vamps it up as a sexy, singing and dancing robot named BAbE while Tampa Bay favorite Matthew
McGee* stars as KariZma, the leader of Boogie Wonderland. (Think Paul Lynde in space!) Add to the festivities rockin’ musical arrangements by Stan Collins and you’ve got a fabulous and funny afternoon or evening at the theatre.

“We are so excited to debut this new jukebox show to our audiences!” said Nick Sessa, Show Palace executive producer. “Our staff has created so many great salutes to popular music over the years. We hope this one proves as popular as our past tributes to the 40’s, 50’s and the 60’s.”

The creative team Boogie Wonderland includes Matthew McGee* (Director/Co-creator), Scott Daniel* (Associate Director/Co-Creator), David Tanciar* (Choreographer), Stan Collins (Musical Director/Conductor), Tom Hansen (Scenic and Lighting Design), Scott Daniel* (Original Wig and Costume Design) and Susan Haldeman* (Production Stage Manager).

Is the Florida summer too much for you this year? Join us at the Show Palace and have a drink, fix your butterfly collar and join KariZma and his friends on a fabulous voyage to a delightful Disco dimension.

Boogie Wonderland is produced in association with MATTOCS Productions MATTOCS is a creative production house conceived by Matthew McGee and Scott Daniel that develops original theatrical works for regional stages across the nation.

The show opens on July 23rd and runs through August 22nd at the Show Palace Dinner Theatre, 16128 U.S. 19, Hudson, Fl, 34667.

Doors open two hours before each show for dinner and cocktails. On Sundays, the doors open at 1 p.m. and show starts at 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday night performances begin at 7:45 p.m., and doors open for dinner and cocktails at 6 p.m.  Matinees are available on select Thursdays and some Saturdays and doors open for dinner and cocktails at 11:30 a.m with a showtime of 1:15 p.m. Tickets are $48, plus tax, for dinner and show. Show only is $36.95 plus tax. Call 727-863-7949 or 888-655-7469 to reserve tickets.

*Indicates member of Actors’ Equity Association, the union of professional actors and stage managers in the United States.

Footloose, Ocala Civic Theatre:

at Ocala Civic Theatre
July 23 through August 1

Footloose, one of the most explosive movie musicals in recent memory bursts onto the live stage at Ocala Civic Theatre with exhilarating results July 23 through August 1.  With a stage adaptation by Dean Pitchford and Walter Bobbie and based on the original screenplay by Dean Pickford, and several Top 40 hits, Footloose creates an energetic musical with an entertaining story.

When Ren and his mother move from Chicago to a small farming town, Ren is prepared for the inevitable adjustment period at his new high school. What he isn’t prepared for are the rigorous local edicts, including a ban on dancing instituted by the local preacher, determined to exercise the control over the town’s youth that he cannot command in his own home. When the reverend’s rebellious daughter sets her sights on Ren, her roughneck boyfriend tries to sabotage Ren’s reputation, with many of the locals eager to believe the worst about the new kid. The heartfelt story that emerges is of a father longing for the son he lost and of a young man aching for the father who walked out on him.

To the rockin’ rhythm of its Oscar and Tony-nominated Top 40 score (the soundtrack album reached number one on the Billboard charts and has sold over 15 million copies!) and augmented with dynamic new songs for the stage musical, Footloose celebrates the wisdom of listening to young people, and guiding them with a warm heart and an open mind. Songs include the popular title song, “Footloose,” as well as “Let’s Hear It For The Boy,” “On Any Sunday,” “Almost Paradise” and “Somebody’s Eyes.”

The cast at Ocala Civic Theatre includes 43 high school and college-aged students who will sing and dance their way into your hearts, including Jonathan Williams as Ren, Kaylee Anderson as Ariel, Chris Diaz as Reverend Shaw, Vanessa Quinones as Vi Moore, Brooke Eliot as Rusty, Kayla Williams as Urleen, Victoria Sexton as Wendy Jo, Jordan Hart as Chuck, Ryan Phillips as Willard, and Maureen Mohan as Ethel. Supporting roles are portrayed by Zack Calder, Julio Chavez, Alex Feliciano, Joshua Higginbotham, Erin Jacobs, David Leppert, Christine Miller, Phillip Norris, Corey Purall, Ileana Quinones, Saul Quinones, Lynnea Rhodes, Susan Rimel, Jacqueline Rojas, Timothy Stadlmueller, and Elijah Timmons. The ensemble includes Austin Britt, Troy Brumm, Sam Dugger, Rebecca Ellis, Jasmine Henry, Stephanie Jones, Ally Kalmbach, Kristin O’Connor, Melissa Ordeneaux, Lane Pindell, Corrine Proetto, Cassie Rolin, Tim Steis, Melanie Tarter, Ronald Thompson, Oz Tovar, and Aubrey Wise. The production is Directed and Choreographed by Mandy Seymore-Sensat. Assistant to the Director is Jeff Sensat, with Shane Bass serving as Music Director. Tim Dygert is Set Designer, with Thomas Buckland as Lighting Designer, and Bridget Bartlett as Costume Designer. Elena Mixson is the Production Stage Manager.

Footloose opens on Friday, July 23 at 7:00 p.m. and continues through Sunday, August 1.
Curtain time for all evening performances is 7:00 p.m.  Matinee performances are scheduled for 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 25 and Sunday, August 1.  Reserved seating is currently on sale at $15.00 for adults, $13.00 for season subscribers, and $8.00 for students.

Tickets may be purchased in person at the theatre, by telephone at (352) 236-2274, or online at http://www.ocalacivictheatre.com. (A service charge applies to online purchases.) Cut loose and join us for this upbeat and energetic musical!

The Ocala Civic Theatre is located at 4337 East Silver Springs Boulevard (East State Road 40) in the Appleton Cultural Center.  The theatre produces more than 12 fully-staged, professional-quality live performances each season and also hosts touring companies. The Ocala Civic Theatre is volunteer based and is one of the largest community theatres in the United States, serving more than 65,000 Marion, Citrus and Lake County residents each season.

Rent, Theatre Winter Haven:

The Award Winning Theatre Winter Haven presents:
Rent, by Jonathan Larson
The musical that defined a generation
July 23 – August 8

Winner of the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
Winner of the 1996 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book

Theatre Winter Haven is only one of two community theatres licensed to perform Rent in Florida!

About the show and its composer/author, Jonathan Larson:

Jonathan Larson focused on composing Rent in the early 1990s while waiting tables to support himself. Over the course of seven years, Larson wrote hundreds of songs and made many drastic changes to the show, which in its final incarnation contained forty-two songs.

In the fall of 1992, Larson approached James Nicola, artistic director of New York Theatre Workshop, with a tape and copy of Rent’s script. When Rent had its first staged reading at New York Theatre Workshop in March 1993, it became evident that despite its very promising material and moving musical numbers, many structural problems needed to be addressed including its cumbersome length and overly complex plot.

Larson continued to work on Rent, gradually reworking its flaws and staging more workshop productions.  On January 24, 1996, after the musical’s final dress rehearsal before its off-Broadway opening, Larson enjoyed his first newspaper interview with music critic Anthony Tommasini of The New York Times, attracted by the coincidence that the show was debuting exactly 100 years after Puccini’s opera. Larson would not live to see Rent’s success; he died from an undiagnosed aortic aneurysm (believed to have resulted from Marfan syndrome) in the early morning of January 25, 1996, just a few hours after his first and only interview.

Rent played on Broadway at the Nederlander Theatre from its debut in April 1996 until it
closed on September 7, 2008. It is the 9th longest running show in Broadway history. In addition, it has toured throughout the United States, Canada, Japan, United Kingdom, Australia, China, Singapore, Mexico, Germany and throughout Europe as well as in other locations.

$20 Adults
$15 Students (Special Student price)

Anyone students under 15 must be accompanied by an adult due to adult themes and controversial issues.

CALL (863) 294-SHOW (7469)

Show Dates & Times

Week 1
Friday, July 23 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 24 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, July 25 at 2:30 p.m.

Week 2
Friday, July 30 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 1 at 2:30 p.m.

Week 3
Thursday, August 5 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, August 6 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, August 7 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 8 at 2:30 p.m.

Inspired by Puccini’s opera La Boheme, Rent is a rock musical that tells a story of a group of impoverished young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York’s Lower East Side in the thriving days of Bohemian Alphabet City, under the shadow of AIDS.

Music and lyrics by Jonathan Larson.

Show includes profanity and mature themes, children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult.

The Littles, Surfside Youth Players:

Surfside Youth Players Summer Productions

Surfside Youth Players is proud to present the WORLD PREMIERE of original productions starring the students of the Summer 2010 Workshops.

The Littles, an original musical comedy-drama, will be performed for two days only, Friday July 23 at 8:00 pm and Saturday July 24 at 2:00 pm.  Tickets are $7.  This play is appropriate for all ages.  Directed by Bryan Bergeron.

To get to Surfside, take A1A into Cocoa Beach, and turn west on Fifth Street South.  Call (321) 784-9347, email surfsideyouthplayers@yahoo.com, or go to www.surfsideplayers.com for more info.

Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp, Pinocchio’s Marionette Theater (opened 7/14):

Pinocchio’s Marionette Theater

Aladdin & the Wonderful Lamp!

45 minute string marionette musical!
Through Sunday,August 22
Wednesdays-Fridays 10:30am, 4pm
Saturdays and Sundays: 12:30, 2:30, 4:30pm
Tickets: $5 per person, ages 2-102!

Schoolhouse Rock Live, Jr., Henegar Center for the Arts:

The Henegar Center for the Arts presents the summer children’s theater production of Schoolhouse Rock Live, Jr. on Saturday July 24 at 2:00 pm & 7:00 pm. Tickets are $4.  Maureen Fallon directs this classic production based on the Emmy Award-winning 1970s Saturday morning cartoon series that taught history, grammar, math, science and politics through clever, tuneful songs instructing a whole new generation to “Unpack Your Adjectives” and “Do The Circulations.” The show is produced by Henegar Center with vocal direction by Terry Rockwell and technical direction by Brock Tucker.

Tom, a nerve-wracked school teacher nervous about his first day of teaching, tries to relax by watching TV when various characters representing facets of his personality emerge from the set and show him how to win his students over with imagination and music, through such beloved Schoolhouse Rock songs as “Just A Bill,” “Lolly, Lolly, Lolly” and “Conjunction Junction.”

A large cast of children performing leaves the audience thoroughly entertained with laughter and joy. The cast for the production includes:  Xena Abeila, Cameron Aiello, Hayley Aiello, Ian Bertel, Jace Chastain, Jackie Coulson, Savannah Farley, Nicole Fendorak, Tyla Gelman, Jimmy Luke Greathouse, Victoria Heilman, Aubriellyn Kennedy, Kaitlyn King Janavitch, Kristina Manning, Adeline Morgan, Courtney Morin, Sam Miemeier, Anna Parks, Robin Putira, Charis Rockwell, Mason Rockwell, Molly Rouzer, Hannah Louise Shellenback, Pedro Ustarez, Tahirah Walston, David Williams, and Kelsey Woodard.

Schoolhouse Rock Live, Jr. is the first production of the Henegar center’s new summer workshop for grades 6-9. Plans are to include a permanent children’s theatre production schedule into the busy programs of the Henegar Center for the Arts.  These productions supplement the on-going schedule of classes, workshops and seminars sponsored by the Feller Theatre Academy’s Stage 1 Stars at the center.

For information on the performing arts instructional classes call the Henegar Center at (321) 723-8698.

The programs of the Henegar Center for the Arts are sponsored in part by the Margaret Hines Foundation, the Brevard County Board of County Commissioners through the Brevard Cultural Alliance, Inc., and the City of Melbourne.

The Henegar Center for the Arts is fully handicapped accessible and located at 625 East New Haven Avenue in historic downtown Melbourne.  Tickets are $4 and available at the Henegar Center box office Monday – Friday during business hours using major credit cards.  For information and reservations call (321) 723-8698.

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