Acting Up Stage Picks: June 2015
See 2015 Banks Prize winner Graham Scott Fleming in the lead role in this Toronto sit-down production. Also, Acting Up veterans Lisa Horner and David Lopez (both seen in The Wild Party) grace the Royal Alex stage.
Inspired by true events, Kinky Boots takes you from a gentlemen’s shoe factory in Northampton to the glamorous catwalks of Milan. Charlie Price is struggling to live up to his father’s expectations and continue the family business of Price & Son. With the factory’s future hanging in the balance, help arrives in the unlikely but spectacular form of Lola, a fabulous performer in need of some sturdy new stilettos.
Now on stage – The Royal Alexandra Theatre, Toronto – mirvish.com or 416-593-4142
The Stratford Festival: Carousel and The Sound of Music
There is plenty of former Acting Up Stage talent in the musicals currently playing at the Stratford Festival: see 2013 Banks Prize winner Alexis Gordon as the lead in Carousel, as well as Glynis Ranney (Falsettos), and Alana Hibbert (Caroline, or Change), in both Carousel and The Sound of Music.
Also, an honourable mention must go out to Sara Farb (UnCovered concerts and NoteWorthy book writer) for her starring role in The Diary of Anne Frank.
The Sound of Music: Overflowing with such beloved songs as “My Favorite Things” and “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” this heart-warming family musical tells an inspiring story of the discovery of love – and a daring bid for freedom.
Carousel: Far ahead of its time in confronting the issues at the heart of a troubled relationship, this wrenching musical drama features a luscious score that includes “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” “If I Loved You” and “June Is Bustin’ Out All Over.”
Festival concludes November, 2015 – The Stratford Festival, Stratford – stratfordfestival.ca or 1.800.567.1600
The Shaw Festival: Sweet Charity and Peter and the Starcatcher
Acting Up Stage’s Music Director from Parade, Paul Sportelli, shows off his musical prowess in Sweet Charity, and alumnus Shawn Wright (Caroline, or Change) acts his heart out in Peter and the Starcatcher.
Sweet Charity: Experience the bold and colourful world of 1960s New York through the eyes of Charity Hope Valentine. The dance hall hostess dreams of a brighter future but she can’t help but give her heart to all the wrong guys. Then she meets the meek but sweet Oscar Lindquist when they get trapped in an elevator. Could he be the man to change Charity’s luck and take her off the market as a heart-for-hire? Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields’ bright music and dance numbers like ‘Big Spender’ and ‘If My Friends Could See Me Now,’ paired with a book by Neil Simon made this a Broadway hit when it premiered in 1966.
Peter and the Starcatcher: Imagine a creaking frigate with an orphan boy in its hold, a disguised pirate ship following in the distance and a trunk carrying stardust – the kind that could let a child float into the air or freeze him in time. A theatrical prequel to Peter Pan, this magical play takes you on a journey using the power of music and story-telling to chronicle the adventures of an orphan soon to be called Peter Pan, and Molly, a girl charged to protect a parcel of stardust from falling into the wrong hands. The Broadway production opened in 2012 and went on to win five Tony Awards delighting audiences young and old.
Festival concludes November, 2015 – The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake – shawfest.com or 1-800-511-SHAW