The Coterie's Season to Include DEAR AMERICA, SPRING AWAKENING and More


"Our 34th season will be another ambitious one for the Coterie. The Coterie's Lab for New Family Musicals will host an awesome holiday production and work with the composing/writing team behind Shrek the Musical to create the premiere Theatre for Young Audiences version," said Jeff Church, producing artistic director. "There will be several wonderful productions based on books: Christopher Paul Curtis' Bud Not Buddy, Lois Lowry's Number the Stars and a piece based on Scholastic's Dear America Series.

"Our Coterie At Night series defies expectations of traditional notions of the Coterie. The profoundly exciting musical, Spring Awakening, will open our season, for teens and older," he said. "No school performances for this one. We programmed this to celebrate the 20th anniversary of caring for teenage health through our award-winning Dramatic Health Education Program."

With the economic challenges facing schools, the Coterie continues to grow, Church said. "We now have two exciting touring productions that go directly into the schools, The Presidents as well as Tell-Tale Electric Poe, which will come back to the Coterie for a return engagement for everyone to see."

• Spring Awakening, September 6-30, 2012. Winner of 8 Tony Awards including Best Musical!Full-length. Broadway original. Book and Lyrics by Steven Sater; Music by Duncan Sheik; Based on the play by Frank Wedekind; directed by Coterie Artistic Director Jeff Church. This Coterie At Night production celebrates 20 years of protecting teens through the Coterie's award-winning Dramatic Health Education Project.

A play from 1891 becomes a great rock musical from Broadway! With its affecting score by recording star Duncan Sheik, raging choreography and magnetic young cast, Spring Awakening goes back in time to explore what's changed - and what hasn't-on the path to understanding sex. It is a story of first love and lasting regrets. But most remarkably, it's a musical contemplating questions that teenagers have been asking forever. (Content note: for mature audiences. Sexual topics discussed, sexual situations, strong language.) Coterie At Night Series | No one under 13 admitted.

Dear America: Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie,September 12- 30, 2012. By Kristiana Gregory; Adapted by Julie Jensen; directed by Amanda Kibler. Young Hattie Campbell and her friend Pepper travel in 1847, from Independence, Mo., across the Oregon Trail with hopeful hearts. Crossing the rough prairies and rigorous mountains, the two girls share joyful events and sobering realities. A fine glimpse of history on a human scale! Appreciated by ages 8 and older.

• The Presidents! Touring schools October 2 – December 21, 2012. Book and lyrics by Steven Cole Hughes; music by Jessica Jackson; directed by Tosin Morohunfola. Two wildly dexterous secret service agents fly around the country in Air Force One, singing songs about all the presidents, and lots of fast patter. With heart pumping pace, this is a roller coaster of knowledge AND humor! A perfect compliment to this election year and coming inauguration. Tours to schools with set, music and sound system. School Tour. Appreciated by 2nd through 6th grades.

• SHREK The Musical, October 30 – December 30, 2012. World premiere Theatre for Young Audiences version! Music by Jeanine Tesori; book and Lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire; based on the DreamWorks film and book by William Steig; directed by Jeff Church; choreographed by Andy Parkhurst.

"Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek…" And thus begins the fairy tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking Donkey, a feisty princess who resists her rescue, and a cast of banished fairy tale misfits. Through heroic feats, Shrek reverses a curse and learns to raise his Freak Flag high. It's a story of adventure, friendship and ogre love that's bringing ugly back! Part of the Coterie's Lab for New Family Musicals, working with Broadway authors and composers. (Content note: a few toilet humor jokes about gas). Appreciated by ages 7 through adult.

Number the Stars, January 22 – February 21, 2013. Based on the Newbery Medal winning book by Lois Lowry; directed by Cynthia Levin. Lowry's story of the rescue of the Danish Jewish population during World War II is one of the most inspiring in human history. The Johansen family faces soldiers, interrogations, fierce dogs and the loss of loved ones to help their neighbors, the Rosens, escape across the ocean to Sweden and safety. Appreciated by ages 10 through adult.

• Tell-Tale Electric Poe, Touring schools January 29 - February 22; performs at Coterie February 23 – March 10, 2013. From the works of Edgar Allan Poe; adaptation/direction by Jeff Church; music performed live by Rex Hobart. In a masterful blending of actor and musician, expertly performed Poe stories and poems are complemented by musical lines and retorts from a reactive electric guitar! This two-person show with full touring set/lights/sound, overflows with poetry, riffs, ghosts and morbid prose floating in an atmospheric setting. Horrifying and humorous, our sublime creation blends old with new. Featuring: The Pit and the PendulumThe Tell-Tale Heart, as well as the poems "Alone," "The Bells," and "The Raven." Appreciated by ages 11 through adult.

Slashdance! March 2013 Dates/Location TBD. World premiere written and directed by Ron MeGee. What a feeling! Alexis Bowens, a female dynamo, is a true MANIAC: welder by day, dancer by night. Her dream is to get into a real dance company though, and nothing's going to get in her way, not even a giant herd of fast-moving, virus-infected human cannibals-or her boyfriend's lack of support. She will finally get her big break! Killing cannibalistic hoards is even better for her abs than Pilates. Coterie At Night Series| Rated PG-13. Under 13 not admitted.

Bud, Not Buddy, April 9 – May 24, 2013. Based on the Newbery Medal and Coretta Scott King Award-winning book by Christopher Paul Curtis; adapted by Reginald Andre Jackson; directed by Scot Copeland. Call him Bud, not Buddy. Bud makes up his mind to journey on his own in search of the man he believes to be his father: jazz composer and musicIan Herman E. Calloway. Set against the backdrop of the Great Depression, times could be hard for Bud after the loss of his mother. But nothing can stop him - not hunger, not fear, not even vampires, because Bud's got a few things going for him. Appreciated by ages 8 through adult.

• Young Playwrights' Festival 2013, April 24 and 25, 2013. The Coterie's Young Playwrights' Festival features a collection of new work by the city's best young writers. The rich and varied theatrical writings which emerge from a year-long process are forged into an ambitious festival of script-in-hand stagings utilizing professional actors.

Lyle the Crocodile, June 18 – August 4, 2013. By Bernard Waber; adapted by Kevin Kling; music by Richard Gray; directed by Missy Koonce and Ron MeGee. What a croc! Loveable Lyle livens up a summer's day. When the Primm family moves into their New York City apartment, their son Joshua is surprised to find a crocodile in the tub. The multi-talented Lyle quickly becomes part of the family, but a nasty neighbor, Mr. Grumps, has it out for the reptile, and it is only a matter of time before he accuses Lyle of frightening his cat. Lyle is shipped off to the zoo, but his old showbiz partner, Hector P. Valenti, jailbreaks him just in time to save the day when Mr. Grumps' brownstone catches fire. Recommended for all ages.

All tickets are now on sale at or by calling (816) 474-6552. Group reservations, Target Saturday and Employee Share tickets are not available online.

Individual tickets: $10 for youth, students and seniors age 60 and up; $15 for adults (excludes Holiday Pricing). Holiday Pricing (Thanksgiving - Dec. 30): $12 for youth, students and seniors; $17 for adults.

Group tickets: $5.50 per person weekdays for groups of 20 or more; $6.50 per person weekends (Friday nights, Saturdays and Sundays; excludes Holiday Pricing). Group tickets must be purchased in advance. Holiday Pricing (Thanksgiving - Dec. 30): $6 for weekday groups; $7 for weekend groups.

Season Tickets: $9 per ticket for three or more plays - regardless of age. Season ticket holders do not have to order the same number of tickets for each production and are the only patrons able to exchange tickets at no charge.

Target Saturdays: Every Saturday matinee for every production, receive one free ticket per order. Restrictions apply (see web for details); not available online.

Spring Awakening: Tickets are $15 – all ages; $9 for season ticket holders. Group rate: 10 tixs for $10 – Advance orders only.

Slashdance: Tickets are $12 – all ages; $9 for season ticket holders. Group rate: 10 tixs for $10 – Advance orders only.

School Tours: The Presidents and Tell-Tale Electric Poe. Booking information including cost is posted at or call (816) 474-4241.

The Coterie Theatre, named "One of the Five Best Theatres for Young Audiences in the U.S." by TIME magazine, is located on level one, Crown Center Shops in Kansas City.

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