NEVERMORE To Open Creative Cauldron 10th Season

NEVERMORE To Open Creative Cauldron 10th SeasonCreative Cauldron opens its 2018-2019 season with Nevermore, the hauntingly beautiful musical written by resident composer and director, Matt Conner and writer, Grace Barnes. Nevermore draws from the poetry and short stories of the iconic Edgar Allan Poe. After its premiere at Signature Theatre in 2006, The Washington Post hailed Nevermore for its "romantic music, ablaze with feeling." Following its 2011 run at Creative Cauldron, Nevermore earned Creative Cauldron its first Helen Hayes Award recommendation. This imaginative musical delves deep into Poe's psyche and explores his gripping obsession with the pivotal women who seemingly haunt his tortured existence. The production will run through October 28 at Creative Cauldron, Falls Church, 410 South Maple Avenue. Performances are Thursdays at 8:00PM, Fridays at 8:00PM, Saturdays at 8:00PM, and Sundays at 2:00PM & 7:00PM.

Conner has more than 15 years of experience working as a musical director, performer and teaching artist in the DC metropolitan area. It was Nevermore that launched his career as a musical theater composer. In 2008, he was one of six composers to receive Signature's American Musical Voices: The Next Generation award funded by the Shen Family Foundation. Conner's newest work Witch, written and composed by both Conner and Stephen Gregory Smith, premiered at Creative Cauldron this past May, in the fourth installment in Creative Cauldron's "Bold New Works for Intimate Stages" five-year commissioning project. Most recently, Conner received two Helen Hayes Award nominations at Creative Cauldron for Outstanding Direction in a Musical in 2018 for Blues in the Night and for Outstanding Direction in a Musical in 2016 for The Turn of the Screw in collaboration with Smith.

The Nevermore cast will feature writer and Helen Hayes Award winning actor Stephen Gregory Smith in the role of Edgar Allan Poe. Smith has played an integral part, alongside his life partner and artistic partner, Matt Conner, in Creative Cauldron's "Bold New Works for Intimate Stages." Previous "Bold New Works" credits include The Turn of the Screw (2015), Monsters of the Villa Diodati (2016), and Kaleidoscope (2017). Performance credits for Smith include Arena Stage, Wolf Trap, the Kennedy Center, Ford's Theater, Signature Theater, Metro Stage, Roundhouse Theatre and Olney Theater in both leading and supporting roles. Additionally, Smith wrote the book for, and directed, Creative Cauldron's musical revue, Cole Porter: You're the Top! (2012), and directed Thunder Knocking on the Door (2013). Portraying the women in Poe's life are Erin Granfield (Elmira), Katherine Riddle (Mother), Sara Hurley (Virginia), MaryKate Brouillet (Whore), and Jennifer Lyons Pagnard (Muddy).

National YoungArts Foundation Award winner, Erin Granfield, joins the cast as Elmira. Granfield most recently played the role of Francesca Johnson to critical acclaim in the DC/Baltimore regional premiere of The Bridges of Madison County. Other credits include Pallas Theatre Collective: Crazy Mary Lincoln (Mary Harlan Lincoln), Lost in Wonderland (March Hare), and a national tour of The Music Man (Marian). Glimmerglass Festival alum Katherine Riddle returns to Creative Cauldron in her first principle role as Mother. Her recent DC/MD/VA credits include UrbanAria's: Florida; Metrostage, Christmas at the Old Bull and Bush, as well as soloist appearances with the American Pops Orchestra, Fairfax Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, and Vladimir Symphony Orchestra in Yekatrinburg, Russia. Sarah Hurley makes her Creative Cauldron debut as Poe's 13-year-old cousin, Virginia. Hurley has most recently appeared in Catholic University of America's production of City of Angels (Mallory Kingsley) where she is currently studying musical theatre. Returning to Creative Cauldron is Jennifer Lyons Pagnard as Muddy. Her stage credits include Creative Cauldron - A Christmas Carol Memory (Ellen/Mrs. Cratchit); 1st Stage - Floyd Collins (Miss Jane); The Keegan Theatre - Parade (Sally Slaton); National Tour - Amazing Grace (Mrs. Catlett); DC Source Festival - Perfect Arrangement (Kitty Sunderson); The Little Theatre of Alexandria: Sweeney Todd (Mrs. Lovett). Soprano MaryKate Brouillet, fresh off her run as Marian in The Bridges of Maddison County at Keegan Theatre, appears as the Whore. A frequent performer at the award-winning Toby's Dinner Theatre in Columbia, MD, Brouillet's performance credits include Newsies (Katherine), Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat (Narrator), Peter Pan (Peter Pan), Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins), and Seussical (Mayzie LaBird) at Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts.

During Nevermore's run, Creative Cauldron will present artwork by Torpedo Factory artist, Guy Jones, in its gallery. His work, which features micro pen and scratchboard techniques on the surface of animal skulls and bones, will be on display for all of Nevermore's performances.

On Saturday, October 7 Creative Cauldron will host "Once Upon a Midnight Dreary," a gala fundraiser in conjunction with the show. Patrons will delight in a pre-show reception featuring Ten Tastes of Falls Church, highlighting small bites from local restaurants and libations, in honor of Creative Cauldron's 10th Season of award-winning theater and music. Tickets will also include seating at the 8:00 pm performance of Nevermore and a post show dessert reception and party with the cast. Tickets are $100 per person.

Tickets for Nevermore can be purchased on-line at creativecauldron.org or by calling 703-436-9948.

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