Off-Broadway's TIL DIVORCE DO US PART Plays Final Performance on 4/13
TIL DIVORCE DO US PART: THE MUSICAL, will conclude its 10-week engagement at the DR2 Theatre (103 East 15th Street in Union Square) after the matinee on Sunday, April 13th, prior to a national tour, which is soon to be announced. Mark Waldrop is the director with concept, lyrics and choreography by Ruthe Ponturo and music by John Thomas Fischer. The musical comedy revue opened to acclaim from critics and audiences alike. Among the raves, The New York Times exclaimed: "The show is buoyant and high spirited. Revenge is truly sweet!" The New Yorker acclaimed: "Laugh-Out-Loud Funny!" and New York Magazine called Til Divorce Do Us Part: The Musical "a wacky and clever musical comedy." For tickets call (212) 239-6200 or visit www.telecharge.com
TIL DIVORCE DO US PART: THE MUSICAL is inspired by the true story of Ruthe Ponturo, who interviewed scores of divorcées to write songs that bring out the humor in an otherwise difficult situation. While going through her own divorce, Ponturo's character is determined to celebrate a new chapter in her life, and turns to her wickedly witty friends, who together sing, dance and laugh their way through the ripple effects of divorce and self-discovery in this musical comedy revue.
Sets are by Mitchell Greenberg, with costumes by Tony Award Winner Paloma Young and Ashley Rose Horton, lighting by Julie Duro and sound by Nevin Steinberg. TIL DIVORCE DO US PART: THE MUSICAL is presented by Rosemary Kalikow, Leslie Simpson, 3 Cats Productions and Dean A.Carpenter.
After many years of wedded bliss, Ruthe Ponturo had her life turned upside down when her devoted husband announced he was leaving her for a younger woman. Suddenly single, Ms. Ponturo was determined not to let divorce ruin her life. Despite an experience that would cause heartbreak for most women, she was able to find humor in what would otherwise be a devastating state of affairs. She found solace in the comical side of divorce and it's aftermath by creating TIL DIVORCE DO US PART: THE MUSICAL and collaborating with composer and musical director John Thomas Fischer. Ms. Ponturo channeled her frustration and observations into her lyrics while actually going through the divorce process. The creative duo spent a great deal of time talking with scores of divorced women and incorporated those experiences into in this musical. An earlier incarnation of the musical played 8 sold-out showcase performances at the Triad last year.
MARK WALDROP directed Bette Midler's Divine Miss Millennium tour. On Broadway he directed Bea Arthur, Just Between Friends (Tony Award nomination, Special Theatrical Event.) Off-Broadway credits include: Howard Crabtree's When Pigs Fly (Drama Desk Award, Outer Critic's Circle Award, OBIE); Newsical; Game Show; Pete 'n' Keely; Listen to My Heart; Inventing Avi; My Deah; and Capitol Steps. Additional credits include Ziegfeld Follies of 1936 (City Center Encores) and Hey, Love! The Songs of Mary Rodgers, starring Faith Prince (Rainbow & Stars.) Regionally, he directed Into the Woods (Seattle's 5thAvenue); Souvenir (Greenville, SC Centre Stage); and Russian on the Side (Chicago's Royal George.) He directed the Paper Mill Playhouse productions of Gypsy (starring Betty Buckley), Little Shop, Romeo & Bernadette, and A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum. Additional credits include Joseph... and Damn Yankees (St. Louis MUNY); Annie (Houston's Theater Under the Stars); and The King and I, Cinderella, Annie, Sound of Music, Little Shop (Maryland's Olney Theater). Mr. Waldrop has also directed concert and cabaret appearances for Sutton Foster, Brooke Shields, Edward Hibbert, and many other Broadway performers.
RUTHE PONTURO has performed, choreographed and taught dance and musical theatre. She has choreographed regional productions of A Little Night Music, West Side Story and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, among others. She served as the director of the youth department at City Studio Dance Theatre, where she helped scores of students learn to dance and more importantly to feel good about themselves. When she and her husband were living in St. Louis, Ruthe worked for Parkway Central High School's Grammy-winning music department and choreographed musicals including the national award winning show choir "Pizzazz". Ruthe and her husband returned to NYC (where they had met as pages at NBC.) When her husband decided he no longer wished to be married, Ruthe vowed NOT to lose her spirit. She hopes this production helps women, divorced or not, to feel confident and positive. Ruthe is an active board member of Rosie's Theater Kids and The Humane Society of New York. She received a BFA and MFA from University of Arizona in Theatre Arts.
JOHN THOMAS FISCHER is the recipient of honors from The Songwriters Hall of Fame and The Independent Music Awards. His music has been featured on MTV (US and UK), PBS and VH-1. New York City credits as a composer include Mike Albo's Sexotheque and numerous collaborations in the rock world, most notably with 60s icon Lesley Gore and 80s icon Chris Stein (of Blondie). He is a classically trained pianist and a graduate of DePaul University, where he studied with Mary Sauer, principal keyboardist for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. While living in Chicago, John was lured into the world of improv comedy, and became a musical director at ImprovOlympic. Here, he improvised regularly with such future stars as Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. He is the voice of the theme song to VH-1's "My Coolest Years", and has been the front person of several indie bands, notably The Staves and Shimmerplanet. John is also a choral arranger and composer, and is the music director of the Metropolitan Community Church of New York.
TIL DIVORCE DO US PART: THE MUSICAL will play the following performances this week: Thursday at 7pm, Friday and Saturday at 8PM, with matinees on Saturday and Sunday at 3PM (final performance). Tickets are $75, with premium seating at $95. For tickets, please call (212) 239-6200, log on to www.telecharge.com or visit the DR2 Box Office (103 East 15th Street at Union Square). For group sales (8+), call: (212) 265-8500 or log on to www.theatre4groups.com.
Photo by Carol Rosegg