MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, MURDER FOR TWO and More Set for Saint Michael's Playhouse's 70th Season
Playhouse Producing Artistic Director Chuck Tobin today announced the June 20 opening of Saint Michael's Playhouse for the company's 70th season of live professional theater with a line-up of shows that include area premieres and a Pulitzer-prize winning American comedy classic, all part of what Yankee Magazine hails as "The Best of New England."
"Seems like our 70th Anniversary season will be another great summer at Playhouse with productions of the high voltage, Tony Award-winning musical Million Dollar Quartet, the Vermont premiere Tom Dudzick's charmer Miracle on South Division Street, the area premiere of the hilarious musical whodunit Murder for Two, and the Pulitzer-prize winning American comedy classic You Can't Take It With You. We are very excited to launch this special season with such a wide variety of enjoyable shows and offer our deepest gratitude to our audience members, financial contributors, production sponsors, and program advertisers, without whose support, for the past seventy years, this professional theater would not be possible." said Tobin. Saint Michael's Playhouse is an Actors' Equity Association theater company operating as an auxiliary enterprise of Saint Michael's College. Actors' Equity Association is the union of professional actors and stage managers in the United States. Tobin adds "We rehearse our shows right here in our theater and design and build our scenery, costumes and props on location with our crew of approximately 70 professional theater artists."
70 YEARS OF PROFESSIONAL THEATER
Opening night, June 30, 1947, the Playhouse was ablaze with colorful lights. Flashy king-size cars pulled into the parking area on the lawn while excited theatergoers in evening dress mingled on the grand porch of Austin Hall anxiously awaiting the Playhouse's premiere performance. As the show ended and the curtain came down, five-hundred first-nighters rose to their feet and applauded for a dozen curtain calls, and so a Vermont tradition was born.
During the following years the Playhouse grew and enjoyed decades of successful summer theater seasons until in 1970 the wooden building that housed the Playhouse burned to the ground. All might have been lost had it not been for Michael and Margaret McCarthy, two major financial contributors to the college, deciding to fund a new theater as a permanent home for the Playhouse. And in 1975, the Playhouse celebrated a grand-reopening in one of the finest theater facilities in the state of Vermont, the McCarthy Arts Center Theater.
Now, hundreds of productions and more than a million audience members later, Saint Michael's Playhouse operates on an Actors' Equity Association CORST contract with an Acting Company comprised of professional actors from the Greater Burlington area along with actors from Broadway, Off-Broadway, and regional theaters from across the country.
ON THE MAINSTAGE
Kicking off the 70th Anniversary season is Million Dollar Quartet, the high voltage, Tony Award-winning Broadway musical inspired by the true story of the famed recording session that brought together rock 'n' roll icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins for the first and only time. Million Dollar Quartet plays June 20 - July 1, 2017 and is directed by Keith Andrews (the Playhouse's Sister Act, Spamalot, Young Frankenstein, Drowsy Chaperone).
Following Million Dollar Quartet is the Vermont premiere of Tom Dudzick's comedy, Miracle on South Division Street. Living in a rough neighborhood in Buffalo, New York, Clara Nowak knew her family was special ever since the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared in her father's barber shop in 1942. But, when new information and secrets are revealed, the family legend begins to unravel in hilarious and heartfelt ways. Miracle on South Division Street plays July 5 - 15, 2017 and is directed by Kenneth Kimmins (the Playhouse's Neil Simon trilogy Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues, Broadway Bound).
The next show of the 70th Anniversary season is the area premiere of Murder for Two, the hilarious new musical whodunit. Two actors play thirteen roles, not to mention the piano, in this wild-and-witty homage to old-fashioned murder mysteries. Mixing classic musical comedy with a dash of Agatha Christie, everyone is a suspect in this madcap mystery. Murder for Two plays July 19 - 29, 2017 and is directed by Jeremy Scott Lapp (National Tour and Off-Broadway's Murder for Two).
The finale production of the season is the Pulitzer Prize-winning American comedy classic You Can't Take It With You by George Kaufman and Moss Hart. Meet the gloriously madcap Sycamore's and enjoy the mayhem that ensues when their daughter Alice's fiancé arrives with his straight laced, conservative parents for dinner on the wrong evening. Everyone has family, but none quite like the Sycamores. Their zany antics and unconventional ways offer hope that love and laughter lead to happiness, even in the most troubling of times. An evening of screwball magic. You Can't Take It With You plays August 2 - 12, 2017 and is directed by Catherine Doherty (the Playhouse's I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, and Spitfire Grill).
In addition to the four mainstage shows of the subscription season Playhouse Junior offers theater performances for young audiences. The Jungle Book plays August 4 - 6, 2017 and is directed by Jon Van Luling. Adapted from Rudyard Kipling's book and the beloved animated film The Jungle Book is a song-filled celebration of friendships, fun and exciting adventures, and show-stopping Disney tunes, including "The Bare Necessities," "Trust In Me," and "I Wan'na Be Like You.
The four mainstage plays of the 2017 season are available as part of the subscription series - Million Dollar Quartet, Miracle on South Division Street, Murder for Two, and You Can't Take It With You. Season subscriptions range in price from $124 to $143. Single ticket prices range from $35 to $46. The Playhouse is located at McCarthy Arts Center, on Route 15, in Colchester, Vermont. Subscriptions and single tickets may be purchased online at saintmichaelsplayhouse.org or by calling 802-654-2281 or visiting the walk-up window in the lobby of McCarthy Arts Center. For a complete show schedule and more information visit saintmichaelsplayhouse.org or contact the theater box office directly.