Nathaniel Hackmann, James Leo Ryan & Kathryn Porterfield to Star in TUTS' OLIVER!; Full Cast Set!

Nathaniel Hackmann, James Leo Ryan & Kathryn Porterfield to Star in TUTS' OLIVER!; Full Cast Set!

Theatre Under The Stars (TUTS) has introduced the cast of Oliver! This classic comes to life on the stage from April 5 - 17, 2016 in Sarofim Hall at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts.

Oliver! combines classic literature with an array of well-loved songs, from "Consider Yourself" to "Food, Glorious Food," telling the heartbreaking story of an orphaned young boy navigating the questionable characters and perils of Victorian London. TUTS' production will present a dark, gritty, street-wise tale with an uplifting ending - reinforcing the benefits of being thankful for the good in life, and the power of love and family.

This production, utilizes the wealth of theatrical talent in Houston, focusing on young actors in the key title roles. TUTS Artistic Director Bruce Lumpkin cites Oliver! as the show that made him decide to go in to musical theatre, while volunteering at Jones Hall as a young man.

TUTS will offer several special events in conjunction with the production for:

• Oliver! Screening at Sundance Cinemas: Join us for a FREE screening of the classic film version of this musical that won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1969 on Monday, March 28th at Sundance Cinemas! Seating is first come, first serve. Parking is free in the Theatre District Parking Garage via validation or reimbursement.

• OUT@TUTS: Houston's LGBT social theatre group hosts a cabaret-style evening at Artista, with complimentary bites, happy hour drink specials -mingle with cast members and other musical theatre enthusiasts on Thursday, April 7th.

For more event information, visit TUTS.com/events. Tickets (from $30) are available online at TUTS.com; by phone at (713) 558-TUTS (8887), or (888) 558-3882 or in person at Theatre Under The Stars Box Office, (800 Bagby Street, Houston, TX 77002), Monday-Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Special offers for groups of 10 or more are available at (713) 558-8888 or groupsales@tuts.com.

TUTS' production of Oliver! is made possible by the generosity of Apache.

TUTS' 2015/16 season is generously sponsored by CHI St. Luke's Health. For all shows, air transportation is provided by United Airlines, the official airline of TUTS. Media sponsors include ABC-13 and Houston Chronicle. Season support is funded in part by grants from the City of Houston through the Theater District Association, and the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Visit www.TUTS.com for more information.

PRINCIPAL CAST BIOGRAPHIES

CHRISTOPHER WOLFF (Oliver Twist) is a 6th grader at the Awty International School and a student at HSMT. Favorite credits include: The Music Man (Winthrop), The Little Prince Opera (chorus), Godspell Jr. (Jesus), Seussical Jr. (Horton), and The Who's Tommy (Little Tommy).

JAMES LEO RYAN (Fagin) made his Broadway debut playing Rooster in Annie with Nell Carter. He played Smee in the Broadway National Tour of Peter Pan with Cathy Rigby, including its final run at Madison Square Garden. James played Thénardier at the National Theatre in Washington, DC, while on the Broadway National Tour of LES MISERABLES with Colm Wilkinson and Sutton Foster. His other Broadway National Tour credits include Pete in Hal Prince's Show Boat, and Reuben in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. James made his Carnegie Hall debut in Jubilee with Tyne Daly. His other concert work includes playing Thénardier in LES MISERABLES with the Anchorage Concert Association, and Jigger in Carousel with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. James currently lives in Los Angeles, where he has guest starred on numerous television shows and movies of the week. His film credits include A Light Beneath Their Feet with Taryn Manning, No Ordinary Hero with Marlee Matlin, Species lll with Natasha Hendstridge, Death Row with Danny Trejo, and Psycho Beach Party with Amy Adams.

CALEB DONAHOE (Artful Dodger) is ecstatic and grateful to be making his TUTS debut! Recent credits include Into the Woods (Festival 56), She Loves Me (Great Plains Theatre) and the Chicago regional premiere of Peter and the Starcatcher (Drury Lane).

KATHRYN PORTERFIELD (Nancy): is happy to be back at TUTS! The Sweet Potato Queens (Jackson Jill), Bonnie & Clyde (Bonnie), First Date (Woman #2), A Christmas Story (Ensemble),The Music Man (Ensemble), James.. Peach (Lady Bug) with TUTS! Panto: Rapunzel (Rapunzel) and Xanadu (Euterpe): Stages Rep. Into the Woods (Lucinda): Main Street Theater. Parade (Lucille) and Les Miserables (Fantine): Casa Mañana.

NATHANIEL HACKMANN (Bill Sykes) is thrilled to be making his TUTS debut! He has most recently played Jean Valjean, Javert, and the Factory Foreman on Broadway in Les Miserables. Valjean has been a personal favorite after portraying him both regionally and in the acclaimed 25th Anniversary national tour. Other New York/national tour: Beauty and the Beast (Gaston), Paint Your Wagon (Steve). Regional: Sweeney Todd (Anthony), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Miles), Oklahoma! (Curly), Ragtime (Tateh), Into the Woods (Cinderella's Prince/Wolf), Camelot (Lancelot), Sanders Family Christmas (Stanley), Bye Bye Birdie (Birdie).

DYLAN GODWIN (Mr. Sowerberry) returns to TUTS having previously appeared in The Sweet Potato Queens, Bonnie and Clyde, First Date, The Music Man, Reefer Madness, James and the Giant Peach, Sweet Potato Queens (workshop), Beauty and the Beast, 110 in the Shade. National Tour: Fiddler on the Roof. Regional: Miller Mississippi, Good People, A Christmas Carol, Ether Dome, Amadeus, Peter Pan, Our Town, (Alley Theatre) Life Could Be A Dream, AltarBoyz, The Tempest, Ubu Roi.

PETER SIMON HILTON (Dr. Grimwig) Theatre includes: Frost/Nixon (Maltz Jupiter) Oklahoma!, LES MISERABLES (National Tours); Hamlet (Denver Center); 39 Steps, Much Ado, Julius Caesar, Merry Wives, Henry VIII (Alabama Shakespeare Festival); Tempest, Othello, Merry Wives, Much Ado (Colorado Shakespeare Festival); Witness for the Prosecution (Fulton), 39 Steps (Drury Lane), My Fair Lady (MSMT); Spamalot (Gateway). TV/Film includes: "Pan Am", "The Prince", "An Englishman in New York", "Honey Flood". Peter is a Genie Award-winning playwright and a drama consultant in issues of global diversity.

KATE LEVY (Old Sally) New York Theatre: Stalking The Bogeyman, NY Rep; The New Group, The Mint. B'way National Tours: The Graduate, On Golden Pond. Regional: Arena Stage, Pioneer Theater Co., Hartford Stage, Merrimack Rep, Hartford Theaterworks, Cincinnati Playhouse, Yale Rep, Cleveland Play House, Denver Center, Portland Center Stage, Alliance, O'Neill, Alley, Paper Mill, Syracuse Stage, Indiana Rep, Northern Stage, Florida Stage, Clarence Brown, Philadelphia Festival For New Plays, BoarsHead. Television: "Elementary", "Blue Bloods", "Unforgettable", "The Affair", "The Good Wife", "A Gifted Man", "Royal Pains", "Gossip Girl", all three Law & Order's. FILM: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.

ALEXA MAGRO (Bet) is delighted to be returning to the TUTS stage. Alexa is a sophomore as well as a 4th year HSMT student. Her Favorite TUTS credits include Rent, Bring It On, Elf, The Music Man, Xanadu, Big, Hairspray, and High School Musical.

BARBARA MARINEAU (Widow Carney) is delighted to return to TUTS, having just appeared as "Mrs. Brill" & the "Bird Woman" in Mary Poppins. Broadway: Gentleman's Guide To Love & Murder, The Women, Beauty and The Beast, King David, Christmas Carol, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Shenandoah. National tours: Trevor Nunn's My Fair Lady, Pippin, Falsettos, Grand Hotel, Into The Woods, Robber Bridegroom. Lincoln Center's Man of No Importance. Awards: Connecticut Critic's Circle - "Mrs. Lovett" Sweeney Todd, Michigan's Wilde Award - "Aggie" Catered Affair, Florida's Carbonell - "Rosamund" Robber Bridegroom.

LAUREN MCDONALD (Charlotte) is excited to return to TUTS after making her main stage debut in The Music Man.

BRIAN RAY NORRIS (Mr. Bumble) is thrilled to be returning to TUTS as Mr. Bumble since his last trip to Houston when he played Chef Louis in The Little Mermaid. Other favorite credits include: Jean Michael in Cinderella, Billis in South Pacific, Mr. Collins in Pride & Prejudice, Beadle Bamford in Sweeney Todd, Bert Healy in Annie, Padre in Man of La Mancha, Roger in Grease and was also seen across North America in Mamma Mia as Father Alexandrios.

GAYTON SCOTT (Mrs. Sowerberry) Broadway Gypsy starring Bernadette Peters directed by Sam Mendes, The Women The Roundabout, Present Laughter starring Frank Langella. Off-Broadway/other New York: Bunty Berman Presents . . . . , Abigail's Party both at The New Group directed by Scott Elliott, Indiscretions directed by Jonathan Silverstein, White Chocolate at The Culture Project directed by David Schweizer, Side Street directed by Ian Morgan, among others. Regional: The Secret Garden Cincinnati Playhouse/Baltimore Center Stage, Deathtrap Pioneer Theatre, August Snow/ Night Dance Triad Stage, A View From the Bridge Gulfshore Playhouse, among many others. TV/Film: "Law & Order:CI", Great Performances on PBS, "As the World Turns", "Guiding Light". Forbidden Love, P.S I Love You.

EADIE SCOTT (Mrs. Bedwin) is delighted to return to TUTS for a second time! (Man of La Mancha, 2013) Regional: Golde, Fiddler on the Roof (Fireside), Grandma Tzeitel, Golde and Yente u/s, Fiddler... (Westchester Broadway), Shaindel, u/s Yente, Fiddler..(Walnut Street), Evita (Walnut Street), Kate, u/s Ruth, The Pirates of Penzance (Pittsburgh Public), Mrs. Fezziwig, A Christmas Carol (Geva), Mrs. Hopkins, My Fair Lady (Geva). Favorites: Dolly, Hello Dolly, Marge, Promises Promises, Blanche, Brighton Beach Memoirs.

DAVID SITLER (Mr. Brownlow) is thrilled to be making his debut here at TUTS. He was last seen in the NYC bound Butler at the Majestic Theatre in MA. Other credits: Broadway (An Inspector Calls), National tour of Frost/Nixon with Stacy Keach, many NYC theatre Companies and regionally from Maine to Utah in roles from Atticus to Scrooge. You can catch him in the second season of Plant as well as a few TV shows and films.

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