Minneapolis Musical Theatre Presents CYRANO DE BERGERAC, Now thru 2/15
Calvin Berger, a modern, musical comedy about a boy, a girl...and a nose, based loosely on the timeless classic Cyrano de Bergerac and set in high school, makes its area premiere in a Minneapolis Musical Theatre (MMT) production running tonight, January 23, through February 15, 2015 at Hennepin Theatre Trust's New Century Theatre. With book, music and lyrics by the award-winning Barry Wyner, Calvin Berger is directed by Joshua James Campbell working with MMT's new artistic director, Christian Unser. Local actor Gregory Adam stars as Calvin, returning to MMT after his scene-stealing turn as the sexy and conniving Raoul in the recent production of Eating Raoul.
Calvin Berger is the latest in the 2014-15 MMT season, which continues on April 24 with Happy Days-A New Musical. Tickets for both shows are on sale now. To purchase and for more information, go online to HennepinTheatreTrust.org. To buy tickets and save on fees, call 612.455.9501 or visit the New Century Theatre in person at 615 Hennepin Ave., street level of City Center in downtown Minneapolis.
Based loosely on the classic Cyrano de Bergerac and set to music, Calvin Berger is the hip and hilarious story of unrequited feelings, love notes and adolescent insecurity. In Wyner's version, it is set in high school among four seniors with raging hormones. The charming, yet endearingly neurotic, Calvin is obsessed by the beautiful, yet ditsy, Rosanna. But the size of Calvin's nose prevents his declarations of affection. Rosanna, in turn, is smitten by Matt, the handsome new boy in town and star wrestler. She confides her secret passion to Calvin who helps by becoming Matt's "speech writer," in hopes of getting closer to his love interest. All the while, Calvin ignores signs of affection from his best friend, Bret, a young woman with yearnings of her own. Yet Bret has clear insight. "Calvin," she insists, "everyone knows what you're feeling but you." When the deception unravels, everybody's friendship is jeopardized.
Calvin Berger was called "a cheerful little winner" by Variety when it ran at the George Street Playhouse in New Jersey in 2010. Playbill called the lyrics "funny, smart, and forever propelling the action along."
Barry Wyner, who wrote the book, music and lyrics for Calvin Berger, has won the Kleban Prize, the Jerry Bock Award, the Richard Rodgers Award and the Noel Coward Prize, as well as an IRNE nomination for best new play. He took his inspiration for Calvin from the 19th-century classic by Edmond Rostand with the plot and characters of Cyrano de Bergerac as a point of departure. It was originally produced in 2006 at the Gloucester Stage Company in Massachusetts, further developed and performed at the Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield, MA and also presented at George Street Playhouse (directed by 3-time Tony winner Kathleen Marshall). Visit barrywyner.com for more information. The original cast album is available on Ghostlight / Sh-K-Boom Records.
Local actor Gregory Adam stars as Calvin, returning to MMT after his scene-stealing turn in his Twin Cities stage debut as the sexy and conniving Raoul in the recent production of Eating Raoul at the New Century Theatre. Adam graduated from St. Olaf College with a B.A. in Theater and Mathematics.
Logan Greene, who plays the handsome wrestler Matt, is now in his fourth show with MMT. He previously performed in All Shook Up, As You Like It, Carrie the Musical, and Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. He is a graduate of Hennepin Theatre Trust's SpotLight Musical Theatre Program and earned a 2011SpotLight Outstanding Actor honor. He also studied for an Associate's Degree in Acting and Theatre Production and Design at Normandale Community College.
Kecia Beth Rehkamp appears as Bret, Calvin's overlooked friend. She is a graduate from the University of Minnesota, Duluth with a BFA in Musical Theatre. She has worked with such companies as Bloomington Civic Theatre, Urban Samurai, Nimbus, Theatre Unbound and Paul Bunyan Playhouse. Some of her favorite roles include Sally Bowles in Cabaret, Sylvia in Sylvia and Heidi in Heidi. Kecia also designs costumes for Tartan High School and works for Target Corporate.
Emily Madigan (Rosanna) is making her MMT debut as the lovely Rosanna. She was recently seen in Failure: A Love Story at the Minnesota Fringe Festival, The Little Mermaid at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres and Cabaret with Theater Latté Da. Emily has been choreographing and performing in the Twin Cities for eight years.
Calvin Berger is directed by Joshua James Campbell, who has worked locally on productions with Theater Latté Da, the Guthrie, Jungle Theater, Park Square, Old Log, Ordway and Children's Theatre. As MMT's new artistic director, Christian Unser is excited to step behind the scenes, after appearing onstage in 11 MMT shows, to enact the organization's mission.
Calvin Berger features musical direction and costume design by Lori Maxwell, Matthew Bear on piano, set design by Darren Hensel, lighting design by Grant E. Merges, sound design by Jordan Daoust and prop design by Jane Ryan. Barry Nelson is the production technician and designer, and Jesse Storovich is the stage manager.
Tickets for Calvin Berger are on sale now and range from $25 to $30 depending on performance dates. Tickets may be purchased in person at the New Century Theatre Box Office (615 Hennepin Ave., street level of City Center in downtown Minneapolis) or by calling 612.455.9501 (no service fees). Tickets may also be bought online at HennepinTheatreTrust.org. Prices include applicable facility fees. Additional charges may apply. Groups of 10 or more save, and should call 612.455.9525 for information and reservations.
Performance dates are Friday, Jan. 23 to Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 at Hennepin Theatre Trust's New Century Theatre. Performance times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. February 15 is the only Sunday show, and it begins at 2:30 p.m. There is also a Monday, Feb. 2 performance at 7:30 p.m.