J. Robert Spencer & Mitchell Jarvis Set to Lead THE UNCIVIL WAR at Adirondack Theatre Festival
Tony nominees J. Robert Spencer and Mitchell Jarvis will headline the 2015 Adirondack Theatre Festival presentation of the new folk rock/bluegrass musical, THE unCIVIL WAR, July 9-18. Rick Kunzi (Book, Music, Lyrics), Justin Zeppa (Book), and Adam Barnosky's (Music) original musical comedy, previously known as Bayonet of Angst, premiered at NYMF in 2014 to rave reviews, and was the winner of four festival awards, including Best Book and Best Ensemble.
The all-star ensemble cast includes returning NYMF cast members: J. Robert Spencer (Jersey Boys, Next to Normal), Brian Charles Rooney (Threepenny Opera, Bedbugs), Michael Abbott Jr. (Mud, Off-Bway's Puddn'head Wilson) & Ian Lowe (Murder for Two); alongside incoming cast members Mitchell Jarvis (Rock of Ages), Matt Stocke (Giant, Full Monty, Wedding Singer) & Antwayn Hopper (Hair, Civil War Christmas).
Helmed by director Steve Bebout (Something Rotten, Book of Mormon), with choreography by Chris Bailey (Chocolate Factory's Assassins, Peter Pan LIVE) and music supervision/arrangements by Brian Usifer (Kinky Boots, Book of Mormon), THE unCIVIL WAR tells the "somewhat mostly true" story of America's Civil War as told through the eyes of its last five surviving veterans. Brought together by their friend's dying wish, the impossibly old codgers' foggy memories and competing tails of what really happened give way to an irreverent comic tour de force about the legacy of America's Civil War and those who fought it.
Executive producers Louis Hobson, Ken Wirth, J. Robert Spencer and Indie Theatrical are quoted as saying, "Indie Theatrical, in partnership with Ken Wirth & 7Spencer Productions, is proud to be presenting this exciting new American musical with ATF and incoming AD Chad Rabinovitz. Our mission is to bring new work and new creative voices to the forefront and we can't imagine a better group of artists or a better partner than ATF to bring this piece to life. After seeing unCIVIL at NYMF last summer our team knew right away that it was something we wanted to be involved with. The mix of comedic virtuosity and unique storytelling, along with the vibrant authenticity of its folk rock/bluegrass infused score, felt wholly original and of the moment. In some ways, it does for the Civil War what Spamalot did for the Knights of the Roundtable, bringing these now almost mythological characters of Lincoln, Mary Todd, Sherman, Grant, McClellan & Lee down to earth in a wonderfully irreverent and ultimately heartfelt way."
Since its founding in 1994, ATF has launched 19 world premieres, many of which have gone on to receive productions in NYC, across the country and internationally. These include Murder for Two, It Goes Without Saying, Mimi Le Duck, Barbara's Blue Kitchen, and Fully Committed. The new play development process succeeds at ATF by engaging the audience as active participants in the process through readings, post-show discussions, open rehearsals, and "meet the writer" events. ATF has also brought many Off-Broadway, Broadway, and regional theatre hits to its stage for its local audiences. These include Next to Normal, Avenue Q, Ring of Fire, The Whale, Black Tie, Altar Boyz, and Stones in His Pockets. For a full list of past ATF productions and premieres, visit ATFestival.org/about/productions.