UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television to Present CAROUSEL

The UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television (UCLA TFT) announced today a new revival of Rodgers & Hammerstein's Carousel, set to open Friday, May 6, 2016 at UCLA TFT's Freud Playhouse. The play, directed by UCLA TFT Adjunct Associate Professor Jeremy Mann, with musical direction by Adjunct Associate Professor Dan Belzer, will feature Broadway actress Linda Kerns and undergraduate acting students from the UCLA TFT Department of Theater.

Carousel tells the story of the 19th century carnival barker Billy Bigelow, the naive millworker Julie Jordan, and Bigelow's attempt to right the wrongs he committed years earlier. Based on the play Liliom, by Ferenc Molnar, Carousel was the favorite musical of composing team Rodgers & Hammerstein, who created such classic songs as "June is Bustin' Out All Over" and "You'll Never Walk Alone."

"It's an honor to be directing one of the great classic works from the Golden Age of American Musical Theater," says Mann. "Carousel features what is arguably Richard Rodgers' most ravishingly beautiful score, and its story of love and redemption is timeless. I am thrilled to be collaborating with Linda Kerns and our very talented Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program students on this wonderful show."

Kerns, who was in the original cast of the Tony Award-winning Nine: The Musical on Broadway, performed in the Broadway national tour of Les Miserables and the Los Angeles productions of Beauty and the Beast and Wicked, portrays Nettie Fowler, the owner of the seaside spa where much of the play's action takes place. A veteran performer for more than 30 years, Kerns has taught private voice and vocal performance classes for the Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program at UCLA TFT since 1999. As a director, Kerns has directed productions of I Do, I Do!, Two by Two, The Fantasticks, The Triumph of Love, All I Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, The Traveling Lady and Makin' Hay for the Actors Co-op, and music directed such shows as Side By Side By Sondheim, Big River, Little Shop of Horrors and The 1940's Radio Hour. In 2014, she directed a production of Guys and Dolls for the Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program.

Mann is director of singing for the Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program. In this capacity, he developed the singing curriculum for the undergraduate musical theater majors, and teaches singing and musical theater performance for the program. Directing credits at UCLA TFT include Into the Woods, Hot Mikado, Cabaret and A Chorus Line, and vocal direction for The Last 5 Years, Urinetown, Side Show, Homer in Cyberspace, Anything Goes and Rent. Before moving to Los Angeles, Mann served for 12 years as resident musical director and actor at the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts (PCPA Theaterfest) in Santa Maria. A lyricist and singer-songwriter, Mann is also co-creator of the original musicals Robin Hood, Christmas Is...a Musical Memory and Christmas Is Here Again, with Brad Carroll.

As part of the Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program, Belzer has music directed, accompanied and conducted several musicals including Rent, Cabaret, Anything Goes, Hot Mikado and Urinetown. He has also worked on such Los Angeles-area theater productions as A Little Night Music; Urinetown; Oliver; All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten; The All-Night Strut; The Sound of Music; Annie, Get Your Gun and Ernest in Love in various capacities including as music director, pianist, conductor and keyboardist.

Veteran choreographer Christine Kellogg has designed the production's dance sequences. She is the dance area head in the Department of Theatre Arts at the University of Miami. She previously taught at UCLA TFT, Carnegie Mellon and California Institute of the Arts. Her choreography credits include productions of Candide, Company, Temptation, Hair, Blame It on the Movies, Jesus Christ Superstar, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Bert Rigby, You're a Fool and The Nutcracker. She has also worked with Kaleidoscope Ballet, Project New Hope and the Los Angeles Gay Men's Chorus.

Performances of Carousel will take place May 6-7, 2016 and May 10-14, 2016 at 8 p.m. There will also be a 2 p.m. performance on Saturday, May 14.

Tickets can be purchased at www.tft.ucla.edu/theatertickets.

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