Theater Aspen Announces Casting For 2009 Summer Season Of Comedy, Music & More

Theater Aspen Announces Casting For 2009 Summer Season Of Comedy, Music & More

Theatre Aspen, Aspen¹s only professional theatre and school, is pleased to announce that casting is complete for the 2009 summer season, reported Artistic Director Paige Price. Theatre Aspen enters its 26th season with an award-winning mix of music, comedy and family fare.

The season runs in repertory at the Alex Kaufman Theatre in Rio Grande Park, opening with the regional premiere of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee on June 25th, the musical A Year with Frog and Toad (July 10th) and Neil Simon¹s Chapter Two (July 16th).

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (music and lyrics by William Finn and book by Rachel Sheinkin) will be directed and choreographed by Mark Martino. The Tony Award® winning musical (Best Book, Best Featured Actor) stars Broadway actors Joan Hess (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Kiss Me Kate, Crazy For You) as Rona, Jamison Stern (By Jeeves, Little Shop of Horrors) as Panch, Jody Reynard (Legally Blonde, Taboo, Saturday Night Fever,) Robin Lee Gallo (Spelling Bee) as Marcy and Beth Malone (Ring of Fire, Marvelous Wondrettes) as Schwarzy. Rounding out the cast is Jonathan Kay (Barfee), Jeff Leatherwood (Leaf), Jordan Nichols (Chip) and introducing Alison Luff as Olive. Musical director is Bob Finnie.

Emmy Award-winning director Jay Sandrich (Mary Tyler Moore Show, Cosby, Soap) directs Neil Simon¹s semi-autobiographical comedy Chapter Two, which stars Spelling Bee¹s Hess and Stern along with Sally Mae Dunn (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Follies, Will Rogers Follies, Beauty and the Beast) and James Ludwig (Spamalot, Little Shop) as George.

A Year With Frog and Toad (Tony Award® nominations for Best Musical, Best Book and Best Original Score), directed by Lynn Aliya, will be presented as a 'Theatre Aspen Family Show.' The show stars Jeff Leatherwood, Alison Luff, Monica Montany and Denver¹s Jeremy Sortore and Scott Rathbun as Frog and Toad, respectively. Sortore and Rathbun reprise their rave-winning performances from the 2008 Arvada Center production. Musical director is David Dyer.

'These shows should be a welcome tonic. Make no mistake, even Aspen has felt the crunch after a harrowing winter; but due to some creative decision-making, we are proud to announce that we will offer more performances than ever this summer,' said Price. Marisa Post, TA¹s Director of Education announced that Theatre Aspen School will offer new classes this year, with Acting for Film and Television and performance Master Classes taught by some of the stars of the main stage shows.

The SUNDAY SERIES will be revived with Jesus in Montana: A Doomsday Cult, by Barry Smith, which won the Outstanding Solo Show in the 2005 NY Fringe Festival. A 'Moth'-inspired storytelling evening called What's Your Story?, Malone's solo cabaret and Aspen's Got Talent, a youth cabaret, will also be presented.

The season's designers are Tom Ward (Sets), Marie Davis-Green and Shon LeBlanc (Costumes), Charles MacLeod (Lighting) and David Thomas (sound). Stage Manager is Vernon Willet.

Tickets are available from the Wheeler Box Office at 970-920-5770 or through <> . For further information, visit <> or call the theatre at 970-925-9313.

Theatre Aspen is generously supported by: American National Bank, Alex Kaufman, Hays Private Client, KTRS, Jessica and John Fullerton, Anonymous, City of Aspen, Les Dames d¹Aspen, Morris&Fyrwald/Sotheby¹s, Maureen and Dan Holman, The Aspen Club and Spa, Soledad and Bob Hurst and Kelli and Allen Questrom. Media Sponsors are Aspen Sojourner, The Aspen Times, Aspen Daily News, Aspen Peak, Aspen Public Radio, KSNO, KSPN/KNFO, Plum TV, KUUR/TV 19
and Qittle.


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