Photo Flash: Porchlight Music Theatre Concludes Season with MARRY ME A LITTLE
Conceived by original Sweeney Todd cast member Craig Lucas and Norman René, the Off-Broadway premiere of Marry Me a Little debuted in 1981 starring Lucas and Suzanne Henry at the Actors' Playhouse. Marry Me a Little includes such songs as "So Many People," "The Girls of Summer," "All Things Bright and Beautiful," "There Won't Be Trumpets," "Can That Boy Foxtrot," "Bang!," "Your Eyes Are Blue," "Happily Ever After," "It Wasn't Meant to Happen" and "A Moment with You."
The production team includes Jess McLeod, director; Austin Cook, music director, Jeff Kmiec, scenic designer; Stephanie Cluggish, costume designer; Becca Jeffords, lighting designer; Mealah Heidenreich, props designer; Keegan Bradac, sound designer; Ashlee Rowland, stage manager; Alex Rhyan, production manager; Shelby Brand, wardrobe supervisor with Jordan Fleming, house manager.
Austin Cook is a Porchlight Music Theatre artistic associate. He made his Porchlight debut in Ain't Misbehavin' for which he won the Jeff Award for "Artistic Specialization" and later music directed and co-starred in the award-winning Sondheim by Sondheim where he received the Jeff award for "Music Direction." The recipient of three Jeff awards, he is currently based in Brooklyn, NY. A native of Kansas City, MO, Cook has been a dedicated musician his entire life. After receiving his bachelor's degrees in piano and vocal performance, Cook toured Europe performing Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 2. In 2008, he came back to the States to join Walt Disney Entertainment as a composer/orchestrator. In 2009, he moved to Chicago to continue his work as a music director, producer and actor. He is a proud member of AEA and the AFM. As a producer, his most recently produced album The Beast in Me received the 2014 Independent Music Award for Best Roots EP. The album was performed in its entirety on the nationally televised PBS series Sun Studio Sessions. Cook moved to New York in 2016 after being in the orchestra for the pre-Broadway run of War Paint at the Goodman Theatre.
ABOUT Porchlight Music Theatre
Porchlight Music Theatre, now in its 22nd season, is nationally recognized for developing innovative new works, reimagining classic productions and showcasing musical theatre's noted veterans and rising stars. Porchlight elevates the genre in Chicago by providing intimate and powerful theatrical experiences for its growing and diverse audiences. With the vision of Artistic Director Michael Weber, Porchlight builds on its role as Chicago's only Equity not-for-profit company exclusively specializing in music theatre. Porchlight's rich history includes the staging of more than 60 productions with 15 Chicago premieres and five world premieres. Through Porchlight's "Off the Porch" new works program, the musicals of the next generation are developed and given a first audience. The School at Porchlight is Chicago's new center for music theatre training in the areas of performance, writing and appreciation. The company's many accolades include 17 Black Theatre Alliance nominations and three awards, as well as a total of 126 Joseph Jefferson Award nominations resulting in 39 Jeff Awards including four consecutive Best Production awards for Dreamgirls (2016), Sondheim on Sondheim (2015), Ain't Misbehavin' (2014) and A Class Act (2013).
Porchlight Music Theatre and Artistic Director Michael Weber are proud to announce the final mainstage production it its 2016 - 2017 season Marry Me a Little starring Austin Cook and Bethany Thomas, music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and conceived by Craig Lucas and Norman René, with direction by Jess McLeod and music direction by Porchlight Artistic Associate Cook. Previews are Friday, April 14 at 8 p.m., Saturday, April 15 at 8 p.m., Sunday, April 16 at 2 p.m. and Monday, April 17 at 7:30 p.m. Opening night is Tuesday, April 18 at 7:30 p.m. The performance schedule is Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 4 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. with an added matinee performance Thursday, May 11 at 1:30 p.m. NOTE There are no 7:30 p.m.performances Thursday, April 20 and May 11 and no 4 p.m. performance Saturday, April 22. Tickets to Marry Me a Little are available at PorchlightMusicTheatre.org or by calling the Stage 773 box office, 773.327.5252.
(L to R) Porchlight Music Theatre Artistic Director Michael Weber, Actress Bethany Thomas, Director Jess McLeod, and Actor/Music Director Austin Cook at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little
(L to R) Understudies Liz Bollar and Patrick Byrnes at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little
(L to R) Lighting Designer Becca Jeffords, Sound Designer Keegan Bradac and Scenic Designer Jeffrey D. Kmiec at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little
(L to R) Musicians Anthony Scandora, Lewis Rawlinson and Cara Hartz with Conductor/Pianist Charlotte Rivard-Hoster at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little
(L to R Top) Porchlight alumni Liz Bollar, Cam Turner, Danny Spagnuolo, Adrienne Walker, Adrian Abel Azevedo, John Marshall Jr., (L to R Bottom) Frankie Leo Bennett, Dana Tretta and Patrick Byrnes at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little
Actor/Music Director Austin Cook with wife and actress Adrienne Walker at the opening night of Porchlight Music Theatre's Marry Me a Little*