Tony Award-Winning Musical PARADE Comes to Chance Theater This Summer

Chance Theater, Anaheim's official resident theater company, is pleased to announce its production of PARADE, with book by Alfred Uhry, music and lyrics by Jason Robert Brown, direction by Kari Hayter, and musical direction by Robyn Manion. PARADE will preview from June 30 through July 7; regular performances will begin July 8 and continue through July 30 at Chance Theater @ Bette Aitken theater arts Center on the Cripe Stage.

Amid religious intolerance, political injustice and racial tension, this stirring Tony Award-winning musical explores the endurance of love and hope against all the odds - themes especially relevant in today's divisive and disconcerting political climate. In 1913, Leo Frank, a Brooklyn-raised Jew living in Georgia, was put on trial for the murder of a 13-year-old girl. Armed with a rousing score and a powerful script, PARADE takes an unflinching look into the darkest corners of America's history.

PARADE dramatizes the real-life 1913 trial of Jewish factory manager, Leo Frank, who was accused and convicted of raping and murdering a 13-year-old employee, Mary Phagan. The show illustrates the dark realities of a time where prejudice, discrimination, and class separation were common practice in the community- just one moment in history that has repeated itself over and over because of a community's intolerance. As a result, unfortunate circumstances, tragic events and a questionable judicial system continue to plague generations to follow. "I am most interested in exploring PARADE as an intimate and exposed platform that reveals the most raw and universal truths of a community" shared director, Kari Hayter, "in order to remind us of our responsibilities today to demonstrate love, tolerance, and acceptance."

"I have spent many years carrying the facts of that day around in my head, and I have always felt it was a very serious responsibility to be asked to give voice to Mary and to Leo Frank, her employer and the man falsely accused of her murder" said composer, Jason Robert Brown. "In revisiting the musical and the history that inspires it, we ensure that the story is continually told-that the fear and shame in the Jewish community does not prevail and that we continue to look deeper at our pasts to preserve our futures."


Alfred Uhry (Playwright) is an American playwright, screenwriter, and member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers: one of very few writers to receive an Academy Award, Tony Award (2) and the Pulitzer Prize for dramatic writing. Driving Miss Daisy (1987) is the first in what is known as his "Atlanta Trilogy" of plays, all set during the first half of the 20th century. The second of the trilogy, The Last Night of Ballyhoo (1996), received the Tony Award for Best Play when produced on Broadway. The third was PARADE, whose libretto earned him a Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical.

Jason Robert Brown (Music & Lyrics) is a skilled composer, lyricist, conductor, arranger, orchestrator, director and performer - best known for his dazzling scores to several of the most renowned musicals of his generation, including the recently revived The Last Five Years, his debut song cycle Songs for a New World, and the seminal PARADE, for which he won the 1999 Tony Award for Best Score. Hailed as "one of Broadway's smartest and most sophisticated songwriters since Stephen Sondheim" (Philadelphia Inquirer), his music has been heard all over the world.

Kari Hayter (Director) is an award-winning professional director and educator based in Southern California. Kari is a proud member of the Theatre Communications Group, California Educational Theatre Association, and the American Alliance of Theatre and Education. She is a tenure track faculty member at California State University, Northridge, where she directs and teaches musical theatre history and performance. Kari is also an advocate for new musicals and has directed staged readings for Mary Marie and Now and Then A Hero, both of which have been recognized by the National Alliance for Musical Theatre and the New Musicals, Inc. She has worked at South Coast Repertory, Antaeus Theatre Company, Chance Theater and Summer Repertory Theatre. Most recently she directed Rock of Ages for Summer Repertory Theatre, the Ovation-nominated West Coast premiere of Lysistrata Jones, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Hairspray for Chance Theater.

In addition to Hayter, the production team for PARADE includes music director Robyn Manion (Hairspray), scenic designer Fred Kinney (A Chorus Line), lighting designer Masako Tobaru (Little Women), sound designer Ryan Brodkin (A Chorus Line), costume designer Elizabeth Cox, dramaturg Sophie Cripe (A Chorus Line), and stage manager Lindsay Marsh (Fancy Nancy, The Musical).

The cast for PARADE includes Chance Theater Resident Artists Laura M. Hathaway (Little Women - The Broadway Musical) and Darryl B. Hovis (For Pete's Sake), as well as returning artists Erica Schaeffer (She Loves Me), Tucker Boyes (Beauty and The Beast), Dillon Klena (The Secret Garden), Ryan Lloyd (Beauty and The Beast), and Mitchell Turner (Kiss Me, Kate). Making their Chance debuts with this production are Allen Everman, Chris Kerrigan, Gabrielle Adner, Devin Collins, Robert Collins, Madeline Ellingson, Alissa Finn, Madison Miller, Robert Stroud, Summer Greer, and Asia Washington.

Sophie & Larry Cripe are the Executive Producers for the Chance production, Laurie Smits Staude and Rachelle Menaker & Eddie Schuller are the Associate Producers. Bette & Wylie Aitken are our 2017 Season Producers.

To schedule press interviews, request photos, schedule press comps or for any additional information, please contact Casey Long at (714) 900-3284 or by e-mail at


Proud to be one of the leading ensemble-driven theatre companies in Southern California, CHANCE THEATER recently received a National Theatre Company grant from American Theatre Wing. The Chance has won six Ovation Awards, including two for Best Production of a Musical - Intimate Theater for its West Coast premiere of Triassic Parq - The Musical and Southern California premiere of Jerry Springer - The Opera, as well as four LADCC Awards, including the Polly Warfield Award for Outstanding Season. The Anaheim City Council named Chance Theater "the official resident theater company of Anaheim", and Arts Orange County has twice named the Chance as "Outstanding Arts Organization". Known for using bold and personal storytelling to promote dialogue and connection within the Southern California theatrical landscape, the Chance is committed to contributing to a more compassionate, connected and creative community. As a constituent member of Theatre Communications Group, Network of Ensemble Theaters, and the LA Stage Alliance, Chance Theater continues to bring national attention to the Southern California and Orange County theater scenes.

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