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UM Dept. of Musical Theatre Presents Starry 25th Anniv Concert 3/21

The University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance Department of Musical Theatre presents a special 25 th Anniversary Concert on Saturday, March 21 at 8 PM in Hill Auditorium. Featuring current students of the department and alumni in collaboration with members of the UM Symphony Band, the 25 th Anniversary Concert celebrates the silver anniversary of this program with a wide variety of musical numbers, dances and musical theatre overtures. Faculty members Brent Wagner, Linda Goodrich, Mark Madama direct and choreograph, with Cynthia Kortman Westphal conducting members of the University Symphony Band.

Since the mid 1980s, UM Musical Theatre alumni have made an impressive and indelible mark on Broadway. From its humble beginnings with one production and a handful of students, the Department has grown to the powerhouse it is today, garnering over 600 applications last year for a coveted 20 spots in the freshman class. Its graduates are starring on Broadway, performing at regional theatres throughout the country, touring in shows around the world, composing, casting, and producing blockbuster shows. Now in its 25th year, the program that helped cultivate the talent and foster the dreams of many successful alumni is widely recognized as a preeminent training ground for American musical theatre performers.

The 25 th Anniversary Concert brings together more than 50 graduates with current students in a varied program of songs from past UM productions and from shows in which graduates have performed on Broadway. Numbers include songs from The 25 th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Jersey Boys, Wicked, Avenue Q, Big River, Anything Goes, Rent, and Candide, among others. The evening will also feature an overture written specially for the concert by SMTD graduate Sam Davis, winner of a Jonathan Larson Award for upcoming theatre composers. Alumni scheduled to perform include Detroit native Celia Keenan-Bolger (Spelling Bee, Les Miz), Daniel Reichard (Jersey Boys, Candide), Justin Paul (composer of Edges), Doug LaBreque (international concert artist and Battle Creek native), and many more. Other guests include music director Ben Whiteley (UM's Carousel and Jesus Christ Superstar) who is currently conducting the national tour of Spamalot, composer Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid), whose daughter is a current student in the Department, Alan Eisenberg (former Executive Director of Actor's Equity), and retired Musical Theatre Associate Professor Jerry DePuit

"It's a one-night only coming together of the past, present, and future of the musical theatre program," states Wagner, Chair of the Department. "Audiences will be amazed to see for themselves the impact the University of Michigan is having on American musical productions." In recent years, U-M graduates have drawn critical acclaim for their performances on Broadway, including Tony Award nominations for U-M alums Hunter Foster (Little Shop of Horrors), Erin Dilly (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang), Gavin Creel (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Celia Keenan-Bolger (Spelling Bee), Jennifer Thompson (Urinetown), and Matthew Rego (producer for Urinetown, Wicked, The Wedding Singer, and Boeing-Boeing (winner).

In the rather small, yet breathtaking galaxy of Broadway, word about talent - and successful musical theatre programs - spreads as quickly as a hit show. In a sort of symbiotic relationship, the program produces successful Broadway performers, composers and producers, who, in turn, shed a positive light on the program. "Our alumni are our ambassadors," said Wagner. "The next generation of musical theater performers are watching them, asking ‘Where did they go to school?'" Joining Wagner, Madama, Westphal, and Goodrich on the creative team for the 25th Anniversary Concert is sound designerScott Stauffer, whose work has been heard on Broadway in The Rivals, Contact and Marie Christine and at UM in the Department's 2007 production of The Who's Tommy.

Asst. Professor of Theatre & Drama Christianne Myers serves as costume coordinator. Mark Allen Berg, whose work was last seen in The Who's Tommy, designs lights. Nancy Uffner, production stage manager for University Productions who worked on Arcs in Time and the annual SMTD Collage Concert, serves as stage manager.

Main floor and mezzanine seating for the concert is sold out. Tickets prices for remaining reserved seating in the rear balcony sections of Hill Auditorium are $16 with students $9 with ID. Tickets are available in person at the League Ticket Office, located within the Michigan League. The Ticket Office is open from 9am-5pm, Monday through Friday and 10am-1pm on Saturday.

Order by phone at (734) 764-2538. All major credit cards are accepted. Tickets may also be ordered online at www.music.umich.edu. Hill Auditorium, located at 825 N. University, is accessible to patrons in wheelchairs and features an assisted listening system.

Department of Musical Theatre 25th Anniversary Concert on Saturday, March 21 at 8 PM

Hill Auditorium, located at 825 N. University, Ann ArborWHO: UM Department of Musical Theatre, members of the UM University Symphony Band Director: Brent Wagner Costume Coordinator: Christianne Myers Music Director: Cynthia Kortman Westphal Lighting Designer: Mark Allen Berg Choreographer: Linda Goodrich Sound Design: Scott StaufferStaging: Mark MadamaStage Manager: Nancy Uffner

CAST (subject to change): Current Musical Theatre Students (list available upon request) Musical Theatre Alumni scheduled to perform - Becky Bahling ('99), Stanley Bahorek (‘03), Courtney Balan ('00), Jenni Barber (‘05), Cathryn Basile ('04), Joel T. Bauer ('07), Darren Biggart ('08), Nick Blaemire (‘08), Todd Buonopane (‘00), David Burtka ('97), Matthew Chellis ('87), Christy Faber ('02), Barrett Foa (‘99), Monique French ('03), Alexander Gemignani ('01), Susan Grady ('98), Danny Gurwin ('94), Kate Guyton ('95), Rachel Hoffman ('99), Anne Horak (‘08), Eric Jackson ('00), Celia Keenan-Bolger ('00), Marc Kessler ('94), Ian Knauer ('90), Chelsea Krombach ('05), Max Kumangai ('08), Doug LaBrecque ('88), Jody Madaras ('93), Sean McKnight ('99), Marisa Meyer ('04), Andy Mientus ('08), Eric Millegan ('95), Shina Ann Morris (‘08), Sydney Morton (‘08),Jessica Mary Murphy ('00), Brynn O'Malley ('03), Susan Owen ('93), Justin Paul (‘07), Annie Ramsey ('02), Matthew Rego ('92), Daniel Reichard ('00), Josh Rhodes (‘93), Natalie Ross ('02), Darryl Semira (‘01), Alexis Sims ('05), Dani Spieler ('07), Brian Spitulnik ('05), Beth Thompson, Toni Trucks ('03), Jake Wilson ('07), Michael Zahler ('05)

TICKETS: $35.00, $32.00, and $25.00 seating is SOLD OUT. $16.00 seats remaining. $9 student seating. Students must provide identification when purchasing tickets. There is a limit of two tickets per ID.BOX OFFICE: (734) 764-2538 League Ticket Office - 911 N. University, Ann Arbor Hours: Monday - Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM; Saturday 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM American Express, MasterCard, Visa, Discover are accepted.

 

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