Photo Flash: First Look at Third Street Theatre's THE BURNT PART BOYS
Adventure and redemption are at the heart of a new musical inflected with the rich musical sounds of the Appalachia region. Third Street Theatre and West Coast Ensemble Theatre present the West Coast premiere of The Burnt Part Boys by Mariana Elder (book), Chris Miller (music) and Nathan Tysen (lyrics), opening Sept. 14 at Third Street Theatre. BroadwayWorld has a first look at the cast in action below!
Richard Israel directs an unforgettable coming-of-age story that follows a group of teenagers in West Virginia's coal country on their life-altering journey to "the burnt part" - the section of the coal mine that took their fathers' lives. Musical director Gregory Nabours shepherds the vocally complex score inflected with the rich acoustic sounds of rural Appalachia.
Daniel David Stewart (Master Harold... at the Rubicon Theatre, Our Town with Helen Hunt at Broad Stage) stars as fourteen-year-old Pete, struggling with the death of his father and lost in his own imagination. Aaron Scheff (BFA from AMDA, upcoming musical Inappropriate at the Odyssey) plays his older brother Jake, working his way up to foreman at the Pickaway mine that took their father's life. Adam Dingeman (Disney Channel's Lab Rats, Glee), Joe Donohoe (Broadway National Tour of RENT, Lovelace, A Rock Opera in L.A. and Edinburgh) and Lauren Patten (Diary of Anne Frank, Bus Stop, Fiddler on the Roof, Doubt and Our Townat Rubicon) round out the leading roles as Dusty, Chet and Frances. The ensemble featuresRich Brunner (DOMA Theatre Company's Jekyll and Hyde), Richard Hellstern (original LA cast of bare, Third Street Theatre's Falsettos), Philip Dean Lightstone (first national tour ofWicked) and Matt Musgrove (The Real Housekeepers of Studio City).
The Burnt Part Boys was a finalist for an American Theatre Critics New Play Award and received an Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award. It premiered Off-Broadway in 2010 as a co-production by Playwrights Horizons and Vineyard Theatre in 2010, receiving a Lucille Lortel nomination for Best Musical. Variety called The Burnt Part Boys "an adventurous, innovative and gripping musical," and the The New York Times wrote "the spirit of youthful high jinks recall[s] the exploits of Mark Twain's beloved roughhousers, Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn."
Scenic design for The Burnt Part Boys is by Will Pellegrini, lighting design is by Johnny Ryman, sound design is by Cricket S. Myers and costume design is by Vicki Conrad. The stage manager is Danielle DeMasters.
Third Street Theatre, under the leadership of artistic director and producer Lani Shipman along with producers Kimberly Harrigan and Richard Hellstern, is one of Los Angeles' newest 99-seat theaters. Past presentations include critically acclaimed productions of Falsettos, The Last 5 Years and The Full Monty.
Composer Chris Miller and lyricist Nathan Tysen started collaborating in 1999 at New York University's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. In addition to The Burnt Part Boys, they have written the scores to Fugitive Songs (2008 Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Revue) and the current Broadway-bound adaptation of the popular novel Tuck Everlasting. Other work includes a song for the revue Stars of David; commissions from Lincoln Center Theater and Playwrights Horizons/Theatreworks Silicon Valley; and an adaptation of Chris Van Allsburg's picture book, The Mysteries of Harris Burdick (Boston Globe Top Ten Pick of 2008). Their television work includes songs for Sesame Street (2012 Daytime Emmy Award) and The Electric Company
Other plays by Mariana Elder include This Side of Paradise (Theater for a New City, Bank Street Theater, Hudson Backstage, Manhattan Theatre Source, published by Estrogenius Sourcebook) and Run Teddy Run (Electric Pear, NYU/Playwrights Horizons, Musical Theater Works, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Rusty Magee Fellowship, Daryl Roth Award). She is a graduate of NYU Tisch (Dean's Fellow) and Grinnell College, and a teaching artist for Lincoln Center Theater and Dreamyard Project.
Richard Israel's most recent directing credits include Dead Man's Cell Phone for International City Theatre, Having It All for the Laguna Playhouse andAvenue Q for Hollywood's DOMA Theatre Company. He has also directed The Full Monty and Falsettos (both for Third Street Theatre), Once Upon a Mattress (Cabrillo Music Theatre) and Gypsy (West Coast Ensemble Theatre - L.A. Weekly Award nominations for Directing and Outstanding Musical). Other credits include Meet Me In St. Louis (MTW), Leading Ladies (ICT), A Christmas Carol and A Grand Night for Singing (Norris Theatre) and Bell, Book and Candle (Colony Theatre), as well the critically acclaimed West Coast premiere of Anita Bryant Died For Your Sins, the Los Angeles premiere of Big - The Musical, Stephen Sondheim's Assassins (L.A. Weekly Award nominations for Direction and Outstanding Musical, LADCC Award for Musical Ensemble) and Adam Guettel's Floyd Collins (Backstage Garland Award for Direction) - all for Hollywood's West Coast Ensemble Theatre. For the Musical Theatre Guild, Richard has directed Violet, One Touch of Venus, High Spirits and High Fidelity, and, for the Actor's Co-op, 1776 (L.A. Weekly Award nominations for Direction and Outstanding Musical), Big River and Merrily We Roll Along. For the Festival of New American Musicals, he has directed Dani Girl, Rocket Science and Between Time and Timbuktu. He is currently in rehearsal for Kiss Me Kate for Cabrillo Music Theatre. Richard is recipient of the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Career Achievement Award for Directing and is the co-artistic director of West Coast Ensemble Theatre.
Gregory Nabours' musical director credits include The Color Purple (Ovation, LADCC and LA Weekly Awards for Best Musical Direction), Justin Love, Falsettos, Having It All, The Women of Brewster Place, Thoroughly Modern Millie, A New Brain, Spring Awakening, Into the Woods, Assassins, The Full Monty and Rent. Gregory's original song cycle, The Trouble With Words, debuted in 2011 and was awarded the Ovation Award for Best Music and Lyrics for an Original Musical, as well as Best Musical at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. Gregory is the resident composer and music director for the Coeurage Theatre Company and can be seen weekly playing for Ryan Black's 88's Cabaret.
The Burnt Part Boys runs Fridays and Saturdays @ 8 p.m. and Sundays @ 2 p.m. from Sept. 14 through Oct. 20. Tickets range from $29-$34 (reserved seating); children 16 and under are $15 with purchase of an adult ticket - use promo code KIDS. The Third Street Theatre is located at 8115 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles CA 90048. For reservations, call 323-655-9232 or go to www.thirdstreettheatre.org.
Photo Credit: Elizabeth Mercer
Adam Dingeman and Daniel David Stewart
Joe Donohoe and Aaron Scheff
Daniel David Stewart and Matt Musgrove
Matt Musgrove and Aaron Scheff
Daniel David Stewart and Aaron Scheff