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Riverdale Rising Stars to Present RENT: SCHOOL EDITION, 4/5-13

Riverdale Rising Stars to Present RENT: SCHOOL EDITION, 4/5-13

The award-winning teens of the Riverdale Rising Stars are proud to present Jonathan Larson's groundbreaking rock musical RENT: SCHOOL EDITION for eight performances only, April 5 - April 13, 2014. Performances will be held at the Riverdale YM-YWHA, located at 5625 Arlington Avenue (just off of Riverdale Avenue and West 256th Street), in Riverdale, Bronx, NY.

Set in the East Village of New York City, RENT is about falling in love, finding your voice and living for today. Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, RENT has become a pop cultural phenomenon with songs that rock and a story that resonates with audiences of all ages.

Based loosely on Puccini's La Boheme, Jonathan Larson's RENT follows a year in the life of a group of impoverished young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York's Lower East Side, under the shadow of HIV/AIDS.

Except for $10 Sunday evening and weeknight performances, tickets are $20 for adults and $12 for seniors and students if purchased online at www.RiverdaleRisingStars.com, or $22 for adults and $14 for seniors and students if purchased at the door prior to showtime. Tickets are also available by visiting www.BrownPaperTickets.com. For group sales, please email mraider@riverdaley.org.

The performance schedule is Saturday, April 5 at 8:30pm, Sunday, April 6 at 2pm, Sunday, April 6 at 7pm, Wednesday, April 9 at 7:30pm, Thursday, April 10 at 7:30pm, Saturday, April 12 at 8:30pm, Sunday, April 13 at 2pm, and Sunday, April 13 at 7pm.

The Riverdale Rising Stars production of RENT: SCHOOL EDITION is directed by Riverdale Rising Stars Founder Laurie Walton, with choreography by Emily Walton, and music direction by Justin Fischer. The design team includes Matt Weiner (lighting) and Denise Eberly (sound). The cast features 30 teenage performers hailing from the Bronx, Yonkers, Upper Manhattan, and beyond

RENT: SCHOOL EDITION incorporates edits to the original Broadway script that tone down the show's language and sexuality to make it appropriate for performance by high school-age performers.

RENT premiered Off-Broadway at the New York Theatre Workshop in 1996, and soon transferred to Broadway's Nederlander Theatre where it ran for 5,123 performances before finally closing in 2008 - the tenth-longest running Broadway show at the time. The original cast included Anthony Rapp, Adam Pascal, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Jesse L. Martin, Wilson Jermaine Heredia, Fredi Walker, Idina Menzel, and Taye Diggs.

Among other awards, including the Tony Award for Best Musical, RENT received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama - one of only eight musicals to be so honored. A film version, featuring many members of the original cast, was released in 2005. The musical has been performed in 24 languages in dozens of countries around the world.

Jonathan Larson, the show's 35-year-old composer/lyricist/librettist, did not live to see the show's massive worldwide success - he passed away from an aortic aneurism the day before the show's first Off-Broadway preview performance. A performing arts grant supporting the careers of young musical theatre writers has been established in his memory.

Riverdale Rising Stars was created to provide the teens of the Riverdale community and beyond a professional repertory company experience. Since its inception 13 years ago, the organization has expanded its programming to include Rising Stars Jr., Riverdale Repertory Company, and the Riverdale Performing Arts Conservatory (RPAC), an educational program for adults and children. Of greatest importance is the way that all build self-esteem, learn enormous respect for others, develop camaraderie and create lifelong friendships. Together, these award-winning companies provide a world of expression, passion and creativity for all ages.

Upcoming productions include The Diary of Anne Frank (April 26-28, with actors of all ages), The Wizard of Oz: Young Performers Edition. (May 18-26, with actors ages 7-12), and Fiddler on the Roof (June 8-15, with actors of all ages).

For more information about upcoming productions, visit www.RiverdaleRisingStars.com.

The mission of the Riverdale YM-YWHA is to be the hub that brings together members of the Jewish and wider community. At the Y, individuals and families of all backgrounds and abilities gather to grow, to learn, and to deepen their understanding of themselves and their connections to one another. Rooted in Jewish values, our cultural, social, educational, health and wellness programs offer members of all ages multiple pathways into the richness of our local community life. Through our programs and partnerships, we strive to improve the quality of life in the Riverdale community and celebrate its uniqueness and its diversity.

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