Underscore Theatre Co. to Present PR0NE: A CASTING COUCH MUSICAL COMEDY, Begin. 8/9

By: Jun. 24, 2013
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Underscore Theatre Company is thrilled to announce the world-premiere performance of Pr0ne: a Casting Couch Musical Comedy, with book, music and lyrics by Underscore company founders, and writers of Liberal Arts: The Musical. Pr0ne explores the intersecting worlds of internet pornography, the justice system and the American family as an aspiring actress is dragged into the public spotlight.

The darkly comedic Pr0ne follows Jessica Harrison, a young woman struggling to find her place in the film industry, and her family as the country discovers her secret: that she is the unnamed, possibly exploited young woman in an adult "casting couch" video at the heart of a highly-publicized legal battle. As Jessie struggles to decide how to testify, her brother and his ridiculous college roommate quest to clear her name and her parents try to come to grips with the idea of their little girl in porn. Pr0ne is equal parts raucous, poignant and provocative.

This fall's production marks Underscore's second original world premiere in the company's two years of producing in Chicago. Last year's Liberal Arts: The Musical!, by the same writer-composer team, was celebrated for "great dialogue and lyrics" and music that was both "engaging and original" (Chicago Theater Beat). The Windy City Times added, "There's a lot of talent on display in the writing and performing of Liberal Arts." Pr0ne takes on darker subject matter with a score rooted in jazz, ranging in style from Dixieland to Latin rock, with a liberal sprinkling of funky porn basslines.

Composer David Kornfeld, recipient of the Kennedy Center's Commendation for Achievement in Musical Composition, says of Pr0ne, "This musical truly showcases everything we strive for as a writing team: high-stakes, intelligent dialogue, fiery, unexpected musicality, and snappy, resonant lyricism." His previous collaborations with Alex Higgin-Houser and Laura Stratford have earned five-star reviews from periodicals such as the Twin Cities Daily Planet and KC Stage. Director Higgin-Houser, whose "brazen direction" of the last two productions of Underscore's annual Rocky Horror Show has created an experience of "wild, raunchy, unabashed fun" that is "not to be missed, and ought to be around for Chicago Halloweens to come," (Reviews You Can Iews) adds, "We'll see you at the Tonys."

Returning artists include artistic associate Sam Button-Harrison, who recently played the lead in Under The Rainbow Flag which won the Jeff awards for "Best Musical" and "Best New Play," along with some familiar faces from this year's The Rocky Horror Show, Miki Byrne, Sarah Hoch, and Leah Tirado. Also featuring Nick Druzbanski, recently seen in Henry VIII at Chicago Shakespeare, Colin Reeves, last seen in the national spotlight as Amber Heard's dancing partner in NBC's "The Playboy Club," Andres Enriquez, Casi Maggio, Susan Thomas, Joshua Peterson, Aubrey Stanton, Kimberly Grossman, and Nick Kern. The band will include artistic associates Jerrod Schober (guitar), Jon Levitt (drums), and Matt Ulm (bass).

For more information, visit www.underscoretheatre.org.

Pay-what-you-can previews run August 9th and 11th at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Avenue at 8pm, and the production opens on Tuesday, August 13th. Join us for the opening night party at 7pm with beer provided by Revolution Brewing, snacks, and a chance to meet the cast and writers! Sunday performances will be at 6pm. There will be talkbacks with the cast and writers after select performances. Tickets are $20 and are available at www.brownpapertickets.com.

Underscore Theatre Company is a team of Producing Artists and musicians in Chicago, IL. Having worked together since 2009, the company has collaborated on four world?premiere musicals, touching on subjects ranging from the liberal arts to pornography. It is our mission to explore stories of power and resonance through the symbiotic relationship of words and music, and in doing so, to open eyes and ears, to enthrall, and to inspire.


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