Shakespeare's Work Lives On in KISS ME, KATE at Arizona Broadway Theatre, Now thru 3/23

Shakespeare's Work Lives On in KISS ME, KATE at Arizona Broadway Theatre, Now thru 3/23

As the classic Cole Porter musical sings, "Another Opening, Another Show," Arizona Broadway Theatre (ABT) is set to open another crowd-pleasing spectacle with Kiss Me, Kate tonight, February 28. First produced on the ABT stage in 2002, this production of one of Broadway's greatest treasures will be onstage for the ABT revival through March 23. Tickets can be purchased now at or by calling the ABT box office at (623) 776-8400.

The play-within-a-play unites Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew with one of Cole Porter's most memorable scores as it follows the story of formerly married Fred Graham and Lilli Vanessi, who are now playing opposite each other on stage as Petruchio and Katherine. As tensions and romance rise, both onstage and off, the ensuing comedic chaos will have theatregoers feeling like part of this one-of-a-kind production. Known for its exquisite choreography, huge sets and detailed costumes this Tony Award-winning musical comes to life under the direction of ABT's executive producer Kiel Klaphake.

"Start with Shakespeare and add some of the most-celebrated music from the great Cole Porter with one fiery romance and you have Kiss Me, Kate," said Klaphake. "The show intertwines life and theatre in a witty and grand fashion while showcasing Shakespeare's work in today's world using songs we all know and love."

Kiel is familiar to the role of director at ABT, having worked on Cabaret, Oklahoma! and 42nd Street, among others. Also no stranger to ABT audiences, Kurtis W. Overby returns to choreograph the heavy-dance production. A new addition, Josh Smith will serve as musical director. Renee Kathleen Koher (The Drowsy Chaperone, Tarzan) in the role of Lilli Vanessi and Equity performer David Sattler (Grease) as Fred Graham will lead the cast of performers including Anya Absten (Tarzan, Hello, Dolly), David Bevis (Seven Brides...), Andy Meyers (Sound of Music, Buddy Holly...) and David Simmons (Buddy Holly...). The complete cast list of national and local performers can be found at

Tickets are on sale now for evening and matinee performances. Prices vary according to date, time and availability. Kiss Me, Kate is a family-friendly production.For more information about Arizona Broadway Theatre, and to purchase tickets contact the box office at (623) 776-8400 or visit

About Arizona Broadway Theatre: Arizona Broadway Theatre (ABT) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit professional performing arts organization located in Peoria, Ariz. The theatre produces eight Mainstage productions each season, up to 12 special events annually and enriches youth statewide through its Theatre for Young Audiences and Academy for Young Performers programs. In its short time in the Valley, ABT has been recognized as the "Best Playhouse of the Valley" by PHOENIX Magazine and was the winner of WESTMARC's "2011 Best of the West" Award. Additionally, ABT has grown to be the highest-attended, live year-round theatre venue in the Valley of the Sun. ABT showcases actors and designers from New York City, the greater Phoenix area and around the country in its state-of-the-art productions.

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