Eric Schaeffer, Artistic Director of Signature Theatre, today announced the lineup for the company's 2012/2013 season. The Tony Award®-winning company, long renowned for staging bold and innovative productions of classic musicals, will be reinventing four legendary Broadway favorites for their exciting 23rd season. In addition to a co-production with Ford's Theatre of the 10-time Tony Award®-winner Hello, Dolly!, Signature will be bringing the uproarious musical comedy The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and the inspirational award-winning musical Dreamgirls to the intimate MAX Theatre. Signature, the Theatre most closely associated with producing definitive productions of Stephen Sondheim, will also present the quintessential musical on love and marriage, Company, for the first time in twenty years.

Rounding out the 2012/13 season will be three celebrated dramatic works, including Beth Henley's Pulitzer Prize-winning Crimes of the Heart, the Washington premiere of Dying City, and a rare in-the-round staging of Shakespeare's R&J adapted by Joe Calarco.

Schaeffer stated, "Signature is known for two things – inventing new works and reinventing others. The 2012/13 season takes us back to our 'garage roots' as we will re-invent some of the great musicals and terrific plays in our intimate theater settings. It's an experience that can't be found anywhere else and it will be a joy to rediscover these milestone shows in the American theater."

"Signature's 23rd season represents an opportunity to experience an extraordinary range of projects – from intimate dramas to large-scale musicals, both classic and contemporary – with the unique combination of intimate, flexible venues and the highest caliber of artists that is Signature's alone," said Maggie Boland, Signature's Managing Director. "In addition to our year-
round community and educational programs, we hope the entire community will join us for our summer concerts and annual Open House on August 4 to experience a special preview of the season filled with free performances. We look forward to sharing another ambitious, exciting season with Washington's audiences."

Signature offers flexible subscription options for 2012/13 season ticket buyers. Custom packages can be created for 3, 4, 5, or 6 shows. Full 7-season subscriptions are also available. Prices begin at $175. Benefits of subscribing include first choice of seats, discounts of up to $12 per ticket over the general public, fee-free ticket exchanges and discounts on extra tickets. Season tickets are now on sale by calling Signature's Box Office at (703) 820-9771 or visiting www.signature-theatre.org. The cabaret 4-show subscription package and Holiday Follies Cabaret are also available for purchase. Tickets for individual shows typically go on sale 4-6 weeks prior to the first performance.

Signature Theatre'S 2012/2013 SEASON

Book by Larry L. King and Peter Masterson
Music & Lyrics by Carol Hall
Directed by Eric Schaeffer
August 14 – October 7, 2012

It was the nicest little…whorehouse you ever saw. Signature Theatre launches its 2012/2013 season with this exciting new production of the Tony Award®- winning hit musical comedy. Inspired by the real-life Chicken Ranch in La Grange, Texas, Miss Mona's brothel and her lovely ladies come to life on the Signature stage. When crusading television watchdog Melvin P. Thorpe ogles the whorehouse as his next moral target, Miss Mona, Her bevy of working girls, and Sherriff Ed Earl Dodd must buck the muckraker to keep the ranch open. A gritty satire about moral hypocrisy and media sensationalism, this musical makes for the perfect election-year event!

Grab your partner because this show will have you two-steppin' and boot-scootin' in the aisles with a score that includes, "Twenty Fans," "Girl, You're a Woman," "Twenty-Four Hours of Lovin,'" and "Hard Candy Christmas," along with the new musical number "A Friend to Me."

Washington Premiere
Written by Christopher Shinn
Directed by Matthew Gardiner
October 2 – November 25, 2012

A transfixing, intimate play from the author of Four and Where Do We Live.

One year after his identical twin brother, Craig's, suspicious death in Iraq, Peter shows up unannounced at his sister-in-law Kelly's apartment. Having not spoken since the funeral, Peter and Kelly face off in a passive-aggressive battle rooted in half-truths and betrayal. Their emotionally brutal skirmish intersperses with flashbacks of Craig's final night home before deployment.

Book and Lyrics by Tom Eyen
Music by Henry Krieger
Original Broadway production directed and choreographed by Michael Bennett
Orchestrations by Harold Wheeler
Directed by Matthew Gardiner
November 13, 2012 – January 6, 2013

Winner of 6 Tony Awards® including "Best Musical," 1981

First a smash on Broadway, then an Oscar Award®-winning motion picture, Dreamgirls captures the spirit and hope of Motown when a struggling girl group from Chicago makes it big. In a business controlled by men, the female trio fights for recognition, fellowship, and love as superstardom challenges their musical and cultural identity. A rich, glowing spectacle about the price of show-biz success, Dreamgirls sizzles with sparkling dance and R&B soul.

This special holiday event at Signature Theatre features the hit songs "Dreamgirls," "And I Am Telling You," and "One Night Only."

The Acclaimed Play
Shakespeare's R&J
Adapted and Directed by Joe Calarco
February 5 – March 3, 2013

Four young men. One scarf. Shakespeare's transcendent saga of forbidden love is reimagined in a brave and bold in-the-round setting.

A repressive, all-male Catholic boarding school bans Romeo and Juliet in favor of Latin conjugations and the Ten Commandments. Four students unearth a secret copy and steal into the night to recite the prohibited tale of adolescent passion. While it begins as a lark, the story gradually draws the boys into a discovery of universal truth that parallels their own coming-of-age. A riveting drama within a drama, Shakespeare's R&J transcends the boundaries between play and player.

The Great American Musical – in a co-production with Ford's Theatre!
Book by Michael Stewart
Music & Lyrics by Jerry Herman
Based on the Play "The Matchmaker" by Thornton Wilder
Directed by Eric Schaeffer
March 15 – May 18, 2013
Ford's Theatre

Winner of 10 Tony Awards®, including "Best Musical"

One of the greatest musicals ever written, Hello, Dolly! brings to life the tale of Dolly Levi and celebrates the search for love.

In an inspired new production, Signature Theatre joins forces with Ford's Theatre to reinterpret this glorious classic tale. Playing matchmaker for herself this time, Dolly woos the impervious Mr. Horace Vandergelder, while also finding mates for two bumbling shopkeepers and persuading Horace to approve his niece's marriage – all in a day's work! Hello, Dolly! is a delectable treat for the whole family.

Eric Schaeffer directs this classic American musical based on Thornton Wilder's The Matchmaker. Featuring the unforgettable songs "Put On Your Sunday Clothes," "Elegance," and "Hello, Dolly!," this lush new production – staged at Ford's Theatre in Washington, DC – promises to delight!

Written by Beth Henley
Directed by Aaron Posner
April 2 – April 28, 2013

A new production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play.

Acclaimed director Aaron Posner (Theater J's The Chosen, Folger Theatre's Arcadia and Orestes: A Tragic Romp) makes his Signature Theatre debut with a new interpretation of Beth Henley's dark comic-tragedy.

The three eccentric Magrath sisters, reunite at their Old Granddaddy's home in Mississippi when Babe, the youngest, shoots her husband because she "didn't like his looks." The quintessential dysfunctional family, the sisters must now deal with past relationships and past resentments, while also trying to come to terms with the consequences of their crimes from their heart. Emotionally deranged and laugh-out-loud funny, Crimes of the Heart ignites a tragically comic family feud of epic scale.

Sondheim. Signature's Signature.
Book by George Furth
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Directed by Eric Schaeffer
May 21 – June 30, 2013

Fresh from directing the critically acclaimed production of Sondheim's Follies on Broadway, Eric Schaeffer brings a new production of Company to the Signature stage – produced here for the first time in 20 years.

On his 35th birthday, Bobby, a commitment-phobic bachelor, searches for the answers to love and life in New York City. While enjoying the company of some lovely ladies, he observes both the joys and pitfalls of marriage from his five quirky couple friends. But is he ready? Only Bobby can find the answer in this witty and piercing examination of matrimony. For how else can you treat marriage, but as a comedy?

This "Best Musical" Tony Award®-winner is pure Sondheim, featuring classics including "Being Alive," "Side by Side," "Another Hundred People," and "The Ladies Who Lunch."

Sponsored by the HRH Foundation


As part of its continuing commitment to developing new works, Signature will be presenting a one-weekend-only concert of Crossing, a world premiere musical by Matt Conner (The Hollow) and Grace Barnes -- the writers of Nevermore.

Book by Grace Barnes
Music & Lyrics by Matt Connor
October 19 & 20, 2011

Crossing explores the interwoven stories of eight people from different decades of the past century who come together at a train station. Some are waiting for the train, others are waiting for visitors, a few are just…waiting. All of them are searching – for hopes and dreams, for new beginnings, for answers. As their stories are brought to musical life in the train station, the characters discover that, while every life is different, the journey is always the same. With music ranging from gospel to pop to rock, Crossing unites the musical eras through the souls who live them.


Signature Theatre will also continue its special Cabaret Performances in the coming season. The cabarets remain an extension of the company's steadfast commitment to musical theater and presented in true Signature style – with a mix of traditional and cabaret-table seating, plus drinks and light fare from Ali's Bar. Evoking a genuine and lively night-club atmosphere, the cabaret performances are presented in the intimate setting of the ARK Theatre. In addition to Holiday Follies, Signature's annual celebration featuring holiday favorites and stockings full of cheer, the 2012/13 Cabaret line-up includes:

Music in the Movies II
September 5 – 8, 2012

Signature sings Hollywood! After the success of last season's Music in the Movies cabaret, we are back with Part II, singing a new collection of silver screen melodies. Expect songs from the classic Fred and Ginger dance-romps to James Bond to more contemporary films.

Euan Morton
January 9 – 12, 2013

Euan Morton, Tony Award® nominee and star of Signature's Chess, is back with a new solo cabaret act. Featuring reinterpreted Broadway standards, songs from his most recent album and Euan's signature humor, you won't soon forget this evening!

Nova Y. Payton
March 13 – 16, 2013

After bringing audiences to their feet as Motormouth Maybelle in Signature's smash hit Hairspray, Ms. Payton returns to the Signature stage! Nova sings a songbook that features everything from R&B soul to Broadway. She is sure to blow the roof off of our intimate 110 seat ARK Theatre.

Lost Songs of Broadway: 1970s
May 29 – June 1, 2013

The perfect companion to Signature's production of Company. Here, audiences will be treated to some songs from 1970s Broadway musicals that didn't fare quite so well. Revisit some incredible gems that we've dug out of the trunk while savoring the disco groove.

Recipient of the 2009 Regional Theatre Tony Award®, Signature Theatre is a non-profit professional theater company in Arlington, Virginia dedicated to producing contemporary musicals and plays, reinventing classic musicals, and developing new work. Under the leadership of co-founder and Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer and Managing Director Maggie Boland, Signature has presented 38 world premiere productions and is renowned for combining Broadway-quality productions with intimate playing spaces.

In addition to hosting the finest talent from the DC metropolitan area and New York, Signature has been home to such theatre luminaries as Chita Rivera, George Hearn, Hunter Foster, Emily Skinner, Marc Kudisch, Judy Kuhn, John Kander and Fred Ebb, Cameron Mackintosh, Terrence McNally, and the company's signature composer, Stephen Sondheim. Since its founding in 1989, Signature has won 72 Helen Hayes Awards for excellence in the Washington, DC region's professional theater and has been honored with 305 nominations.

Signature is partially supported by a grant from the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts and by a gift from Arlington County through the Arlington Commission for the Arts and the Cultural Affairs Division of the Department of Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Resources.

Related Articles

From This Author BWW Special Coverage

Before you go...