Julia Gagne Directs DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS at Garden Theatre, Now thru 2/23

Julia Gagne Directs DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS at Garden Theatre, Now thru 2/23

The Garden Theatre will present the Central Florida premiere of the devilishly cheeky, fun-filled Broadway musical Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, tonight, January 31 - February 23, 2014, Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays at 2pm & 8pm, Sundays at 2pm. The book was written by Jeffrey Lane, with music and lyrics by David Yazbek, and is directed by Julia Gagne. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is sponsored by Duke Energy, Harmony Tech, The Digital CPA, Insight Credit Union and ACE Hardware. The Garden Theatre's 2013-2014 Season is presented by CenturyLink.

This is the first show Julia Gagne has directed since serving as artistic director and theater department chair at Valencia College for 30 years, and it happens to be a Central Florida premiere. "After being away from directing for a few months, it has been a pleasure coming back to the creative process," said Gagne. "There have been a few adjustments I've needed to make, new designers and directors and production teams to get used to, but all in all it has been a great experience."

In this Broadway musical based on the 1988 film, two fraudsters in the French Riviera cross paths and realize the town isn't big enough for the both of them. A challenge is made: the first to successfully swindle a young woman will stay; the other must hit the road. These con men end up with much more than they bargained for in a storyline with more twists and turns than pearls on a stolen necklace. "I love the musical for its reveals and surprises, its zany sense of fun, the smart and funny language and lyrics, and the comedic storyline," said Gagne. "It has been lots of fun putting all the pieces together."

Valencia students and faculty can purchase $15 tickets for the second weekend (February 7-9). In addition, an Industry performance on Saturday, February 1 at 2pm offers $20 tickets to those in the theatre industry.

Tickets are $29 for adults, $25 for students and seniors. A 15% military discount is available by visiting the box office at 160 W Plant St. For tickets, visit gardentheatre.org or contact the Garden Theatre Box Office at 407-877-GRDN (4736). Note: This show contains mild language and shady characters.

The cast of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels has many local actors returning to the Garden stage. Cast includes David Almeida (previously in Zombies From The Beyond, A Christmas Carol) as Lawrence Jameson, Wesley Slade (previously in Alice Lost in Wonderland) as Freddy Benson, Jillian Gizzi (Garden Theatre debut) as Christine Colgate, Keith Smith (previously acted in Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Sound of Music and The Music Man, Noises Off and The Foreigner, and as director for A Christmas Survival Guide) as Andre Thibault, Merry Ellen Williams (Garden Theatre debut) as Muriel Eubanks, and Shannon Lynch (Garden Theatre debut) as Jolene Oakes. Ensemble members include Katie Brown, Buddy Fales, Natasha Harrison, Daniel Longacre, Alan Natochy, Austin Paz, Cody Senger, Carly Skubick, Samantha Uhrig, Kate Vermillion, Lyndsey Wilkerson and Christine Williams.

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