Musical Theatre West's WEDDING SINGER Opens 7/8


Musical Theatre West is proud to announce the cast for the professional regional premiere of THE WEDDING SINGER directed by Larry Raben at the beautiful 1,070-seat Carpenter Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. THE WEDDING SINGER runs July 9 through July 24, 2011, with a low priced preview on July 8.

The cast of Musical Theatre West's production of THE WEDDING SINGER includes: CIARÁN McCARTHY (National Tour: THE WEDDING SINGER. Regional: RENT, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, FOREVER PLAID), as Robbie Hart; RENÉE BRNA (Broadway: CORAM BOY. National Tour: LITTLE WOMEN. Regional: BARNUM, LUCKY DUCK, LES MISÉRABLES) as Julia; Derek Keeling (Broadway: GREASE. National Tour: GREASE. Regional: Happy Days THE MUSICAL, LIFE COULD BE A DREAM. TELEVISION: NBC'S GREASE: "You're The One That I Want") as Glenn; Jenna Coker-Jones (Off-Broadway: EVIL DEAD, THE MUSICAL, FAME ON 42ND STREET. National Tour: DOCTOR DOLITTLE, SEUSSICAL, THE MUSICAL. Regional: LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, JOSEPH..., THE FULL MONTY) as Holly; Kelli Provart (Broadway/National Tour: AIDA. Regional: ALL SHOOK UP, BEEHIVE, RING OF FIRE, JOSEPH...) as Linda; NICK BERNARDI (Regional: ...SPELLING BEE, ANNIE, BEAUTY & THE BEAST) as Sammy; and Matthew J. Vargo (Broadway: A CHRISTMAS CAROL, CATS. National Tour: YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, THE PRODUCERS, KISS ME KATE) as George.

The ensemble includes Tomasina Abate, Ashley Allen, Jasmine Ejan, Emily Goglia, American Idol finalist Todrick D. Hall, Nicola Harrington, Tracy Lore, Mark C. Reis, Ben Sidell, Daniel Smith, Neil Starkenberg, Katherine Washington, Timothy Wilson, and Kevin Wood.

As previously announced, Mary Jo Catlett, is set to play Rosie, Robbie's grandmother. Mary Jo may be best remembered as Pearl, the maid on the popular '80s sitcom, "Diff'rent Strokes", and her remarkable career has spanned from Broadway (the original cast of HELLO, DOLLY!) to film ("Serial Mom") to current television classics (Mrs. Carlisle on "Glee," the voice of Mrs. Puff on "SpongeBob SquarePants"). Musical Theatre West is pleased to welcome her back to the Carpenter Center stage after her hilarious turn as Jeanette in the runaway hit, THE FULL MONTY, in 2007. Ms. Catlett's other credits include: Television: "General Hospital" as Mary Finnigan (Emmy nomination), "That's So Raven" (Mrs. Applebaum) and as a guest star on "Cold Case," "Days of Our Lives," "M*A*S*H*," "Murder, She Wrote," "Mr. Belvedere," "Matlock," "Kojak" and "Saved By the Bell." Film: "The Champ," "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas," "Benchwarmers," "Beethoven's Fifth" and "Semi-tough." Broadway: Ernestina in HELLO DOLLY! (original cast), Mabel in THE PAJAMA GAME, CANTERBURY TALES, LYSISTRATA with Melina Mercouri, FASHION, DIFFERENT TIMES, PLAY ME A COUNTRY SONG and 70, GIRLS, 70 (Encores). First National Co.: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (Mdme. de la Grande Bouche). Regional theatre: Mamma Rose in GYPSY, Mother Superior in NUNSENSE and Lotte in LETTUCE AND LOVAGE (Pasadena Playhouse), COME BACK, LITTLE SHEBA (LA Drama Critics Award) and PHILADELPHIA HEAR I COME (LA Drama Critics Award) and Tennessee Williams' TWENTY SEVEN WAGONS FULL OF COTTON (Washington DC Critic's Award).

Based on the 1998 Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore film of the same name, the musical version of THE WEDDING SINGER has a book by Tim Herlihy and Chad Beguelin with music by Matthew Sklar and lyrics by Beguelin. People Magazine hailed THE WEDDING SINGER'S Broadway run as "Awesome!" further saying that "People haven't had this much fun since Mamma Mia!"

A loving tribute to all things '80s, THE WEDDING SINGER is set in 1985 and follows Robbie Hart, New Jersey's favorite wedding singer who is engaged to platinum blonde, leather-clad Linda. Trouble begins when Linda stands Robbie up at the altar on his own wedding day. Bitter and broken, Robbie begins to make every wedding as disastrous as his own, until a warm-hearted waitress named Julia intervenes. Robbie starts to fall for Julia, only trouble is, Julia is about to be married! Can Robbie pull off the performance of the decade and win the girl of his dreams? Please, was Madonna the original material girl?

THE WEDDING SINGER opened on Broadway in 2006 and ran for 285 performances at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. Critics praised Beguelin and Sklar's clever and often hilarious score and with THE WEDDING SINGER'S original screenwriter Herlihy on board as co-author, audiences who fell in love with the original film, were ecstatic with its faithful musical adaptation.

The production team for THE WEDDING SINGER includes director Larry Raben (Broadway/Las Vegas: THE PRODUCERS. Off Broadway: FOREVER PLAID, Original Cast) musical director David Lamoureux (percussionist for Katie Costello and Gwen Stefani) and choreographer Spencer Liff (TV's "So You Think You Can Dance?").

The performance schedule for THE WEDDING SINGER is Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. (no matinee on July 9), Sundays at 2 p.m., with a 7 p.m. performance added on July 17th. Tickets start at $30, with last-row seating available at an additional discount. There is a $3 service charge per ticket. Prices are subject to change without notice. Group rates are available for 15 or more. Musical Theatre West performs at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center located at 6200 E. Atherton Street, Long Beach, CA 90815.

Tickets for THE WEDDING SINGER are on sale now and may be purchased online at or by phone at 562-856-1999 x4. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the Musical Theatre West Box Office located at 4350 E. 7th Street, Long Beach, CA 90804 from noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

THE WEDDING SINGER is the fourth show of Musical Theatre West's 2010-2011 Season and is made possible through the generous contributions of Honorary Producer Kathryn Baker Campbell and Associate Producers Richard Neri & Kurt Schulzman and Universal Care. Musical Theatre West's 2010-2011 Season Sponsors are the Ackerman Family/Evalyn M. Bauer Foundation and Ken and Dottie Reiner.

Scheduled for the 2011-2012 Season is Hairspray, Winter Wonderettes, Man of La Mancha, Forbidden Broadway: Greatest Hits, Volume Two and one show yet to be announced.

For more information on Musical Theatre West's production of THE WEDDING SINGER, please visit

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