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Previews Begin for Irrationals, Off-Broadway

Shenango Productions presents a new musical, Irrationals, Off Broadway at The American Theatre of Actors, 314 West 54th Street. Previews begin this Saturday, November 6th and the Opening is Wednesday, November 10th at 8:00 pm. The music is by Edward Thomas with book and lyrics by Jon Marans. It is directed by Martin Platt, with choreography by Cjay Hardy-Philip. Cherie Rosen is the musical director. The set designer is Bill Clarke; costume designer Iracel Rivero; lighting designer: Jeff Nellis; and the sound designer is Jason Fitzgerald for the limited engagement.

The talented cast for the new Off Broadway musical includes: Brandon Michael Arrington, Meredith Kaye Clark, Cicily Daniels, J.D. Goldblatt, Rodney Hicks, Trisha Jeffrey, Nia Jervier, Matt Mundy, Greg Pierce, Pearl Sun and Jim Walton.

Irrationals concerns eight astoundingly bright and troubled New York City high school kids (17-18) deal with life, sex, drugs, stolen paintings, origami, the dance at the gym, AND a difficult new math teacher who brings his own life crisis into theirs. In this new musical, the score ranges from contemporary Broadway to pop rock and even a little disco.

Jon Marans' play Old Wicked Songs was a 1996 Pulitzer Prize Finalist for Drama, winner of the L.A. Drama Logue Award, and included in Best Plays of 1996-97. It was also produced in London's West End, starring Bob Hoskins. The play has been translated and produced in a dozen countries around the world and was the second most performed new play in the U.S. in the 1997-98 season. Mr. Marans' play Opportunity Knocks won the Backdoor Theater Award. Child Child won the Preston Jones New Play Award. Numerous other plays have been produced around the US. In film, he was a story editor and script doctor and for TV a staff writer/lyricist for the "New Carol Burnett Show". Jon has written the past two years for "Cookin' in Brooklyn", a comedy show now airing on the Discovery Channel.

Edward Thomas is a classical and popular composer whose works have enjoyed success in concert halls and theaters. His compositions have premiered at New York's Philharmonic Hall and throughout the country. His opera Desire Under the Elms, with a libretto by Joe Masteroff, was produced at New York's City Center and released nationally nominated for a 2004 Grammy. The musical Six Wives, a Thomas/Masteroff collaboration based on the life and loves of Henry VIII, was produced by the York Theater. His score for the musical Mata Hari, with lyrics by Martin Charnin and book by Jerome Coopersmith, was originally produced by David Merrick and subsequently staged as Ballad for a Firing Squad. He has also received seven gold records as producer and composer for such artists as Julie Andrews, Jack Jones, Vikki Carr, Leontyne Price, Vic Damone, Roberta Peters, and the Vienna Choir Boys.

Martin Platt is currently co-producing Here Lies Jenny, starring Bebe Neuwirth. Recently he directed D.H. Lawrence's The Daughter In Law, which made the NY Times "10 best of 2004" list. He has directed over 100 productions at regional theatres across the country as well as operas for Atlanta, Birmingham, Santa Fe, Mr. Platt has directed the U.S. premieres of Tom Stoppard's Rough Crossing and Tim Firth's Neville's Island; premieres of plays by Lanie Robertson and Wendy McLeod. Overseas he has directed Miss Ever's Boys (Barbican Centre, London, and Bristol Old Vic); Lady Day At Emerson's Bar & Grill (London/Birmingham Rep); The Free State with Janet Suzman to name a few. With Fifth Amendment, Ltd (UK) he has co-produced the West End productions of Nixon's Nixon, A Woman In Waiting, and Gumboots; as well as over fifty productions in the UK.

Performances of Irrationals are: Monday 8pm; Wednesday – Sunday 8pm; & Saturday 3pm. Tickets are only $15.00 They are available by calling (212) 696-6738. For Group Sales or information please call (212) 581-0910.

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