UT Theatre & Dance to Present IN THE HEIGHTS, 4/9-19

UT Theatre & Dance to Present IN THE HEIGHTS, 4/9-19

The University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre and Dance presents the four-time Tony Award winning musical In the Heights, directed by Jerry Ruiz, April 9-19, 2014 at the B. Iden Payne Theatre. Created by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Music and Lyrics) and Quiara Alegría Hudes (Book), the celebrated musical is a captivating journey into New York's vibrant Washington Heights community. With an invigorating score of Latin pop and hip hop, combined with dynamic dance, this joy-filled story is about finding your place in the world.

"In the Heights is the story of a community that is under pressure; that is changing, growing, transforming," shares director Jerry Ruiz. "The neighborhood is like a big extended family, but there's a danger that the family will be pulled apart by external forces. Change happens fast in New York City, and the question is, will the community survive intact?"

Guest artist in residence at UT Austin, Ruiz has developed work at Second Stage Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Soho Rep, The Public, The Atlantic and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Prior New York credits include Enfrascada by Tanya Saracho (Clubbed Thumb), Basilica by Mando Alvarado (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater) and Philip Goes Forth (Mint Theater Company).

"It's is an exciting, contemporary musical that draws inspiration from some truly classic musicals such as West Side Story and Fiddler on the Roof," explains Ruiz. "It will captivate those who enjoy a great story told through the musical form."

First written by Lin-Manuel Miranda in 1999 during his sophomore year of college, In the Heights was nominated for thirteen 2008 Tony Awards, winning four: Best Musical, Best Original Score, Best Choreography and Best Orchestrations.

In the Heights features an all-star cast of 34 University of Texas at Austin students and one guest artist, including: Trey Curtis as Usnavi, Theresa Medina (guest artist) as "Abuela" Claudia, Cherry Mendoza as Vanessa, Melinette Pallares as Nina Rosario, J. Quinton Johnson as Benny, Max Torres as Sonny, Marianel Marquez as Daniela, Madison Palomo as Carla, Joseph Quintana as Kevin Rosario, Tyler Brown as Camila Rosario, Nicolas Garza as the Piragua Guy, and Stephen Anthony Dominguez as Graffiti Pete.

Ensemble members include: Shereen Ahmad, Reema Bounajem, Lizzette Chapa, Johnny Chatman II, Allie Donnelly, Haylee Durbin, Felicia Fitzpatrick, Mandy Foster, Brittany Gonzales, Dominique Gonzalez, Grace Hanna, Lillian Hayes, Christian Henley, Kelley Henry, Matthew Hernandez, D'Lonte K. Lawson, Luke Linsteadt, Danielle LoPresti, Chris Montalvo, Kelsey Oliver, Erica Saucedo, Lilly Lane Stafford and Georgina Wilson.

Direction by Jerry Ruiz Ÿ Lighting Design by Rachel Alulis Ÿ Scenic Design by William Anderson Ÿ Integrated Media Design by Ryan Belock Ÿ Music Direction by Spencer Blank Ÿ Choreography by Maria Antonieta (Toni) Bravo Ÿ Stage Management by Victoria Solorio Ÿ Costume Design by Chin-Hua Yeh

For more information on In the Heights, please visit www.JoinTheDrama.org.

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