Kathleen Marshall-Helmed THE UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN, 'VANYA AND SONIA' & More Set for Denver Center Theatre's 36th Season
The Tony Award-winning Denver Center Theatre Company announced its 36th season which boasts new adaptations of classics, a Broadway hit, a beloved holiday tradition, two world premieres and a telling of a night after an historic boxing championship. The season will run September 12 - April 26 with eight main stage productions.
Kicking off the 2014/15 season in September is an exhilarating refresh of Meredith Willson's (The Music Man) 1960 musical, The Unsinkable Molly Brown complete with a fresh new book by three-time Tony Award nominee Dick Scanlan (Thoroughly Modern Millie), new songs from the Willson catalogue and staging and choreography by three-time Tony Award winner Kathleen Marshall (Anything Goes). The Ricketson Theatre will open with Christopher Durang's latest Broadway hit Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike while a powerful adaptation of Lord of The Flies breathes new life into William Golding's classic novel in The Space Theatre. In keeping with tradition, Charles Dickens' beloved classic, A Christmas Carol, returns to The Stage Theatre to delight Denver audiences for another holiday season.
In January 2015, the Theatre Company continues its commitment to produce new work with full main stage productions of James Still's romantic and tender story Appoggiatura and Eric Schmiedl's adaptation of Kent Haruf's best-selling novel Benediction, both of which received readings during the 2014 Colorado New Play Summit.
The spring productions will begin with One Night in Miami..., a slice-of-life dramedy that imagines what occurred on the evening of Cassius Clay's historic win over heavyweight champ Sonny Liston. The final main stage production will be announced at a later date.
"We are very excited to begin our season with a new revision of The Unsinkable Molly Brown with one of Broadway's most successful director/choreographers, Kathleen Marshall," said Producing Artistic Director Kent Thompson. "The fall truly demonstrates the variety of our season with a stage adaptation of the thrilling and terrifying Lord of the Flies accompanied by the 2013 Tony Award-winning play, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike - a wonderfully dark and hilarious new play straight from New York. In addition to this vibrant season, we embark on an expansion of our commitment to new plays - with a two-week Colorado New Play Summit! Don't miss our new plays and the Summit - two world premieres from the 13/14 season are already scheduled for NYC productions. We expect our two world premieres next season - James Still's Appoggiatura and Eric Schmiedl's adaptation of Kent Haruf's latest novel, Benediction, to join that roster of follow-on productions across the U.S."
The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Lyrics and Music by Meredith Willson
Additional Lyrics and Book by Dick Scanlan
Based on the Original Book by Richard Morris
Directed and Choreographed by Kathleen Marshall
Sept 12-Oct 26 (Opens Sept 19) | Stage Theatre
This exhilarating refresh of Meredith Willson's 1960 musical tells the rags-to-riches romance of Colorado's own heroine, Molly Brown. With a new book by Dick Scanlan (Thoroughly Modern Millie), new songs from the Willson songbook and staging by Tony-winning director/choreographer Kathleen Marshall (Anything Goes), the tempestuous can't-live-with-him/can't-live-without-him love story that survived the Silver Boom, Gold Rush and sinking of the Titanic returns to the stage in an all-new production.
Lord Of The Flies
Adapted for the stage by Nigel Williams
Sept 26-Nov 2(Opens Oct 3) | Space Theatre
A staple in classrooms for generations, Chicago Theatre Beat raves Lord of the Flies is a "powerful, passionate adaptation that breathes new life into the classic novel," which tells the story of a group of English boys who become stranded on a deserted island. Intoxicated by sudden freedom, their games quickly descend to a savage struggle for power. A compelling glimpse into dystopia that explores the grimmest reaches of human nature and fragility of free will.
Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
By Christopher Durang
Oct 10-Nov 16 (Opens Oct 17) | Ricketson Theatre
Absurdist master Christopher Durang blends melancholy with mayhem in what The New York Times declares a "deliriously funny" black comedy. Winner of the 2013 Tony Award for Best Play, this Chekhovian mash-up erupts into chaos when Vanya and Sonia receive a surprise visit from their Hollywood star sister, Masha, and her boy-toy Spike. Residents and visitors of the normally quiet household are thrown into hilarious upheaval as they confront issues of sibling rivalry, regret, lust and love.
Essential to the holiday season in Denver, A Christmas Carol promises to "warm your heart and renew your holiday spirit" according to the Examiner. Based on Charles Dickens' classic novel, this joyous and opulent musical adaptation traces money-hoarding skinflint Ebenezer Scrooge's triumphant overnight journey to redemption. A Christmas Carol illuminates the meaning of the holiday season in a way that has resonated for generations.
*Added attraction, not part of the subscription season.
By James Still
Jan 16-Feb 22 (Opens Jan 23) | Ricketson Theatre
Written by three-time Pulitzer nominee James Still, Appoggiatura follows three closely related Americans, each nursing a hunger and a hard-to-heal wound, as they travel to the romantic city of Venice seeking solace. As time bends and magic lies just around the corner, this favorite of the Colorado New Play Summit weaves a quirky and lyrical narrative exploring love, loss and the human soul.
A Denver Center commission.
By Eric Schmiedl
Based upon the novel by Kent Haruf
Jan 30-Mar 1 (Opens Feb 6) | Space Theatre
Boasted a "masterful look at the end of life" by The Denver Post, this adaptation of best-selling Kent Haruf's novel takes place on the high plains of Colorado. The final chapter of a trilogy, Benediction is a slice-of-life drama about three souls searching for meaningful connections despite separation, loneliness and the race against time.
A Denver Center commission.
One Night in Miami...
By Kemp Powers
Mar 20-Apr 19 (Opens March 27) | Space Theatre
This slice-of-life dramedy that the LA Times calls "engaging and thought-provoking," imagines what occurred the night of Cassius Clay's historic win over heavyweight champ Sonny Liston. Declining a glamorous Miami Beach party, Clay chooses to celebrate in a hotel room with his closest friends: activist Malcom X, singer Sam Cooke and football player Jim Brown. Over the course of the night each man argues for his vision of what it means to be black in 1964, culminating in an early morning announcement from Clay that will shock the world. Filled with "crackling good dialogue and timely themes," as boasted by Variety, One Night in Miami... is a "decisive knockout."
Mar 27-Apr 26
March 27 - April 26 | Stage Theatre
Part of the thrill of live theatre is the element of the unexpected. We are reviewing a few dynamic choices for our final production of the 2014/15 season. Stay tuned!
New and renewing subscribers may reserve season tickets starting Monday, March 17 online at denvercenter.org/subs or by calling 303.893.6030 or 303.893.4100. Single ticket on-sale dates will be announced at a later time. Subscribers enjoy free ticket exchanges, payment plans, priority offers to Broadway and student shows, discounted extra tickets, a dedicated VIP hotline, free events including talkbacks and receptions, and the best seats at the best prices, guaranteed.
Note: Plans for the new season are subject to change.
Photo by Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.