CRAVING FOR TRAVEL Ends Off-Broadway Run this Weekend

Greg Edwards & Andy Sandberg's acclaimed two-actor, 30-character comedy about travel agents and the people they serve, Craving for Travel, now making its world premiere at the Peter J. Sharp Theater (416 W. 42nd Street, NYC), will close as scheduled this Sunday, February 9. The play is commissioned and produced by Jim Strong, one of America's leading luxury travel agents, and directed by Sandberg.

There are just three remaining performances - Saturday February 8 at 3pm and 7.30pm and Sunday February 9 at 2pm. Running time is 75 minutes, with no intermission. Tickets are $32.50 and $49.00 and can be purchased at www.CravingForTravel.com or 212.279.4200, or in person at the Ticket Central Box Office at 416 W. 42nd Street (12 - 8pm daily).

The best luxury travel agents are thriving as never before, at a time when the internet would seem to have made them obsolete. According to a recent study, one in three travel agencies is actively hiring, due to demand for professionals who can give advice about the infinite choices available and can listen to, and meet, particular clients' needs and desires. Of course, not all of those clients' needs and desires are what you would call reasonable. All of which makes for a highly competitive industry, and one full of comedic raw material.

n 2011, Jim Strong set out to find New York theater artists who could write about the travel industry in their own voice and shed light on the role of the modern travel agent. He found Edwards and Sandberg, arranged for them to interview travel professionals and experience them at work, and encouraged the writers to theatricalize their impressions, whatever they may be.

Michele Ragusa (Young Frankenstein, Disaster!) and Thom Sesma (The Lion King, The Times They Are A-Changin') collectively play thirty characters-chiefly, Joanne and Gary, rival travel agents (and former spouses) vying for their industry's most prestigious honor: the Globel Prize. With their reputations on the line, Joanne and Gary will tackle any request, no matter how impossible, and any client, no matter how unreasonable. Full of overzealous travelers, overbooked flights, and hoteliers who are just over it, Craving for Travel reminds us why we travel-and everything that can happen when we do.

The world premiere features scenic design by Charlie Corcoran (The Weir), costume design by Tony Award nominee Michael McDonald (Hair), lighting design by Tony Award-winner Jeff Croiter (Peter and the Starcatcher), and sound design by Bart Fasbender & Dave Sanderson (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson). Pamela Edington is the Production Stage Manager, and Andrew Jones is the General Manager. Casting is by Geoff Josselson.

Greg Edwards (Co-Author) has written lyrics for Neurosis: A New Musical (Merry-Go-Round Playhouse); book and lyrics for Taking the Plunge (NYMF, Samuel French OOB Festival), The Temptation of Lady Amsterdam (Prospect Musical Theatre Lab), and Office Space: The Musical (Yale); the script for Application Pending (with Andy Sandberg); and assorted songs with Marvin Hamlisch (White House Governors' Dinner, Mr. Hamlisch's holiday tour). Honors and approximations thereof include the BMI Harrington Award and the Fred Ebb Award (two-time finalist). He's backpacked through India, Guatemala, Peru, and Iceland, but really he should have used a travel agent. For more information: www.greged.com.

Michele Ragusa (Joanne et. al.) just finished a successful run as Jackie in the Off-Broadway production of Disaster, the Musical. She last starred on Broadway as Elizabeth in Young Frankenstein, succeeding Megan Mullally. Her other Broadway credits include Urinetown, Ragtime, A Class Act, Titanic and Cyrano. HerOff-Broadway credits include Adrift in Macao (Primary Stages, Lortel and Drama League nominations as well as the Barrymore Award. Regional credits: Spamalot (Lady of the Lake, The Muny); Gypsy (Rose, The Hangar Theatre); Singing in the Rain (Lina Lamont, The Muny); Into the Woods (The Witch, Kansas City Rep., dir. Moises Kaufman); Annie (Miss Hannigan, TUTS); Kiss Me Kate (Kate, Paper Mill, dir. James Brennan); The Drowsy Chaperone (The Chaperone, Flat R ock Playhouse); Company (Sarah, GeVa Theatre); Bad Dates (Haley, Studio Arena, dir. Scott Schwartz); She Loves Me (Amalia, Paper Mill, dir. James Brennan); Boeing Boeing (Gabriella, Engeman Theatre, dir. BT McNicholl); Guys and Dolls (Adelaide, Rabin Award, Dallas Theatre Center); Noises Off (Belinda, Studio Arena); Sweeney Todd (Beggar Wmn, Portland Center Stage); Side Sondheim (Berkshire Theatre Festival); Lend Me a Tenor (Maria, Portland Stage/Engeman Theatre); Me and My Girl (Jacquie, Goodspeed, dir. Scott Schwartz); Nunsense (Sr. Amnesia, Sacramento Music Circus). Ms. Ragusa is also seen as star vocalist with symphonies across the country.


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