Tap-Happy DAMES AT SEA to Open Greater Boston Stage Company's 18th Season

Tap-Happy DAMES AT SEA to Open Greater Boston Stage Company's 18th SeasonGreater Boston Stage Company opens its 18th Season with the tap-happy Broadway musical Dames at Sea. Directed and choreographed by Elliot Norton and IRNE Award-winner Ilyse Robbins, performances run September 7 - 24, 2017. The Press Opening is Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 3:00pm.

Within 24 hours, sweet little Ruby (Ephie Aardema) from Hometown, U.S.A arrives in New York, falls in love, and moves from the chorus to become a star on Broadway. Dames at Sea features rollicking tap dancing, love at first sight, joyful music and a boatload of laughs.

Shares Robbins, "Dames at Sea was one of the gems of Off-Broadway theatre well before its Broadway premiere. Opening in 1966, it brought Bernadette Peters into the spotlight where she quickly became the gleam in everyone's eye. It is a parody of the 1930s Busby Berkeley-style musicals and many of the stage shows of the time. I like to think of Dames at Sea as a cross between 42nd Street, Anything Goes and Singin' in the Rain. What could be better than that?"

The design team is comprised of Music Director Steven Jones, Scenic Designer Eric Levenson, Lighting Designer Chris Fournier, Costume Designer Emily Taradash, Sound Designer John Stone, and Props Master Juliet Schneider.

Dames at Sea production credits: Book and Lyrics by George Haimsohn and Robin Miller. Music by Jim Wise.

Single Tickets for Dames at Sea: $50-60 Adults; $45-55 Seniors; $20 Students (with valid ID). Thrifty Thursday tickets cost $15 at the door and are available for the Thursday, September 7, 2017 performance at 7:30pm. Student Rush Tickets start one hour prior to each performance, and 2 Student tickets may be purchased for the price of one (subject to availability). For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Box Office at Greater Boston Stage Company at (781) 279-2200, or visit www.greaterbostonstage.org.


ILYSE ROBBINS (Director/Choreographer) proudly holds the new title of Associate Artistic Director at Greater Boston Stage Company. Ilyse has directed, choreographed or per­formed in over 20 shows at GBSC where directing credits include I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti; Mame; Sweet Charity; A Funny Thing...Forum (co-direct with Weylin Symes); How to Succeed... (IRNE Award-Best Choreography); Miracle on 34th Street; Thoroughly Modern Millie (Elliot Norton Award-Best Director); 42nd Street (IRNE Award-Best Choreography). Other credits include United Solo Festival NYC, SpeakEasy Stage Co., Hanover Theatre, Lyric Stage, New Rep, Underground Railway, Modern Theatre, Hope Rep, Fiddlehead Theatre, Overture Productions, Jewish Theater NE, American Stage Festival, Boston Theatre Works, Wheelock Family Theatre, Museum of Science, Publick Theatre, Reagle, UpStage Lung Cancer, Boston Women on Top, Liberty Mutual, Fidelity. Ilyse holds a B.S. in theatre from Northwestern University, certification from the British American Drama Academy and an Ed.M. from Harvard University. She teaches at Brandeis University and Northeastern University and coaches presentation skills for Mohr Collaborative and Ovation Communication. Ilyse recently received the 2017 IRNE Award for Choreography for The Scottsboro Boys for SpeakEasy Stage, which also won the Elliot Norton Award for Best Musical. She was just seen on Greater Boston Stage Company's stage in Jonah and the Whale and will next direct/choreograph She Loves Me here. Coming up, Ilyse will co-direct/ choreograph Road Show for the Lyric Stage Co. of Boston and choreograph Allegiance for SpeakEasy Stage. Ilyse is an Associate Member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.

Ephie Aardema* (Ruby) has been seen at Greater Boston Stage Company in How to Succeed in Business... (Rosemary), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Millie) and 42nd Street (Peggy). Broadway: The Bridges of Madison County. Off- Broadway/NYC: Songbird (Mia, NY Times Critics Pick), Parade (Monteen, Lincoln Center), Daddy Long Legs (Jerusha), Dear Edwina (Edwina). National tour: Fiddler on the Roof (Chava), The Sound of Music (Liesl). World premieres: A Sign of the Times (Cindy, Goodspeed), A Room with a View (Lucy Honeychurch, Old Globe), Two Dollar Bill (Megan, Pioneer Theatre Co.). Other regional: Paper Mill Playhouse, Philadelphia Theatre Co., La Jolla Playhouse, St. Louis Rep, North Shore Music Theatre, ReVision Theatre, MSMT, Orlando Rep, PCPA, among others. Fun facts: Ephie spent half her summer in South Korea developing a new musical and the other half at Sundance Theatre Lab developing another new piece by Tony Award-winner Jeanine Tesori and Pulitzer Prize-winner David Lindsay Abaire. She's an international tap champion and the youngest-ever graduate of Circle in the Square Theatre School. She holds a CongressionAl Gold Medal for Outstanding Youth and is a current stu­dent in the New School's honor program for writing and democracy.

SARA COOMBS (Joan) is thrilled to be back at Greater Boston Stage Company this season! She was last seen on the stage here in Thoroughly Modern Millie (Ruth) and 42nd Street (Phyllis Dale). Sara has taught tap at Broadway Dance Center and Peridance Capezio Center in NYC. Choreography credits: The Yankee Peddler (Off-Broadway), The Drowsy Chaperone, The Mystery of Edwin Drood and Big River (The Barnstormers Theatre). Sara has a B.F.A in musical the­atre from The Boston Conservatory.

Shana Dirik* (Mona) is thrilled to make her Greater Boston Stage Company debut as Mona in Dames at Sea. Recent roles: Miss Andrews (Mary Poppins), Dolores (The Wild Party; IRNE nom.), Debra (Kimberly Akimbo; IRNE), Suzy (The Polar Express; IRNE nom.), Ursula (The Little Mermaid; IRNE nom.), Minchen (A Little Princess; IRNE nom.), Miss Hannigan (Annie), Witch (Into the Woods; NH Theater nom.), Jeanette (The Full Monty), Melpomone (Xanadu; IRNE nom.), Mama Maddelena (Nine), Mama Morton (Chicago), Norma (Sunset Boulevard), Mother Superior (Nunsense), Charlotte (A Little Night Music; IRNE), Mrs. Lovett (Sweeney Todd; IRNE), Anna (The King and I), Evita (Evita).

Taavon Gamble* (Dick/ Dance Captain) returns to Greater Boston Stage Company after appearing as Jonah in Jonah and the Whale last season. Tour: Seussical. Select credits include The Scottsboro Boys (SpeakEasy Stage); Oklahoma! (Trinity Repertory Company); A Chorus Line (NBFT); A Christmas Carol (The Hanover Theatre); Candide (Quantum Theatre); appearances with Reagle Music Theatre, Ivoryton Playhouse, Theatre By The Sea, West Virginia Public Theatre, Pittsburgh Musical Theater, Baltimore Shakespeare Festival and Ocean State Theatre. Workshops: My Heart Is the Drum (Village Theatre), Blurred Lines (Trinity Rep), Toni Stone (Harvard). Point Park grad. Upcoming: A Christmas Carol at Trinity Rep. taavongamble.com.

Russell Garrett* (Hennesey/The Captain) returns to Greater Boston Stage Company where he has appeared as Julian Marsh in 42nd Street, Albert/Jonathan in The Sparrow, Dr. Grayburn in Something's Afoot, Bratt in How to Succeed in Business... and Col. Pickering in My Fair Lady (IRNE nom.). Other New England area appearances include Emperor Joseph ll in Amadeus (IRNE nom.) and Carr Gomm in The Elephant Man at New Repertory Theatre, Ernst in Cabaret and Roger DeBris in The Producers at Ogunquit Playhouse; Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol at North Shore Music Theatre (six years); and the recent acclaimed production of the IRNE and Elliot Norton Award-winning The Scottsboro Boys, playing The Interlocutor for SpeakEasy Stage. He has appeared extensively on Broadway and national/ international tours with The Scarlet Pimpernel, 42nd Street, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Show Boat, My Fair Lady, Pageant and A Chorus Line.

Michael Seltzer* (Lucky) is thrilled to be making his Greater Boston Stage Company debut! Michael was most recently seen as Jay in Lost in Yonkers at The Weston Playhouse. He is a recent gradu­ate of The Boston Conservatory with a B.F.A. in musical theatre. Favorite Conservatory credits include Gabe in Next to Normal and Frank Abagnale Jr. in Catch Me If You Can.

*Denotes member of Actors' Equity Association.

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