Music Theatre Kansas City to Present Local Professional Premiere of AVENUE Q

Music Theatre Kansas City to Present Local Professional Premiere of AVENUE Q

Music Theatre Kansas City (MTKC) is well known around town for offering steady, top-quality musicals performed by the city's best youth talent. Last year, MTKC introduced its first paid-professional production with The Last Five Years and the start of the longtime local theater company's expansion into professional-level performances.

This season, MTKC Pro, as the professional division is called, will present Kansas City's first professional production of Avenue Q at 8 p.m. March 31, at 2 and 8 p.m. April 1, and 2 p.m. on April 2. Their second weekend of performances will all start at 8 p.m. April 6, 7 and 8. All performances will be at Union Station City Stage. Tickets are $15 for students and $25 for adults and are available online at www.mtkc.org.

"Avenue Q has always been one of my favorite shows," said MTKC's Artistic Director, Julie Danielson, who grew up singing and performing for MTKC. Her mother, Cary Danielson is the founder and executive director.

"It's rare to see a musical this hilarious and accessible to so many different demographics. The writers went on to create Book of Mormon and Frozen, so you know it's great! I mean, this little show beat Wicked for the Tony Award!"

Avenue Q won the "Triple Crown" for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book at the 2004 Tony Awards. It has been running in New York for nearly 15 years, both Off and On Broadway. It is often thought of as "Sesame Street" for adults.

Avenue Q will be directed by Julie Danielson (Broadway production of "Bring It On" and National Tour production of "Spring Awakening").

Brad Shaw, a local designer and actor has designed and constructed the puppets exclusively for this production. There are 15 unique puppets featured in the show.

About Avenue Q (a musical written by Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx and Jeff Whitty): Winner of the Tony "Triple Crown" for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book, Avenue Q tells the timeless story of a recent college grad named Princeton, who moves into a shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q. He soon discovers that, although the residents seem nice, it's clear that this is not your ordinary neighborhood. Together, Princeton and his new-found friends struggle to find jobs, dates and their ever-elusive purpose in life.

Filled with gut-busting humor and a delightfully catchy score, not to mention puppets, Avenue Q is a truly unique show that has quickly become a favorite for audiences everywhere. Although the show addresses humorous adult issues, it is similar to a beloved children's show; a place where puppets are friends, Monsters are good and life lessons are learned.

Cary Danielson's passion for Youth Theater started in Wichita, Kansas in 1984 when she started her first theater company, Music Theatre for Young People. That program still remains an active and vibrant component of the Wichita arts scene today. Then in 1991, Cary moved to Overland Park and started a similar theater company. In 2014, the organization changed its name to Music Theatre Kansas City and remains dedicated to bringing quality musical theater and preparatory training to the Kansas City community. MTKC performs on a variety of Kansas City area stages and partners with a number of local schools, universities, theater companies and musical organizations. Formally only for youth theater, MTKC now offers MTKC Pro, a professional division committed to bringing professional-level performances to Kansas City. They are currently in the midst of a capital campaign to help build their own theater in Johnson County, as part of the B&B Shawnee Movie Complex.

For more information, visit www.mtkc.org or call (913) 341-8156.

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