Balagan Theatre to Present World Premiere of Off-Broadway Bound Musical ERNEST SHACKLETON LOVES ME

In an innovative collaboration between three Seattle theatres, Balagan Theatre will present the world premiere production of the Off-Broadway bound new musical, Ernest Shackleton Loves Me, in April 2014 on the Leo K stage at Seattle Repertory Theatre, and in workshop performances February 2-4, 2014, at ACT Theatre.

Every workshop ticket purchase also includes a ticket to a full production performance in April, giving patrons an intimate, inside look at a musical-in-the-making (not to mention a great deal!). Tickets are on sale at

Because not everyone in Seattle will watch the Superbowl, those fine few non-football-watching patrons can buy half-price tickets to the Sunday, February 2, workshop performance online using promo code EXPLORE. Balagan subscribers can see a workshop performance for free by sending their RSVP to

In this unique multi-company collaboration, Balagan Theatre produces Ernest Shackleton Loves Me; ACT Theatre's Central Heating Lab supports the workshop development of the piece; and Seattle Repertory Theatre hosts the full production on the Leo K stage and builds the set, which will be transferred to New York.

Ernest Shackleton Loves Me stars singer/songwriter/electric violinist Valerie Vigoda as Kat, a sleep-deprived single mom who is fired from her day job as a video game composer and then contacted through her video blog by the legendary gentlemen-explorer Ernest Shackleton (Wade McCollum). Inspired by Kat's music, the two embark together on Shackleton's historic Antarctic quest, conquering new horizons and creating a high-tech, cross-time love affair for the ages.

An Oregon native, McCollum recently starred in the Seattle run of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, National Tour at the Paramount Theatre. He is also well known for his award-winning performance in the L.A. production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and created the music and lyrics for ONE the musical, which enjoyed a sold-out run with Insight Out Theatre Collective (Portland).

Directed by Obie Award winner Lisa Peterson (Iliad and Pullman Porter Blues, Seattle Repertory Theatre), Ernest Shackleton Loves Me features music and lyrics by Vigoda and Brendan Milburn (Toy Story: The Musical; Sleeping Beauty Wakes; Striking 12) and book by Tony Award winner Joe DiPietro (Broadway: Memphis, Nice Work if You Can Get It; Off-Broadway: Toxic Avenger and the longest running Off-Broadway reveue, I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change).

Production design is by Alex Nichols (Broadway: Wishful Drinking, Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway, Nice Work If You Can Get It; Off-Broadway: In Masks Outrageous and Austere, Los Big Names, Horizon). Sound design is by Gregory Award winner Robertson Witmer (Boeing Boeing and I Am My Own Wife, Seattle Rep; Romeo and Juliet, Intiman; The Seagull (ACT Central Heating Lab). Costume design is by fellow Seattle artist Chelsea Cook (Spring Awakening, Balagan; She's Come Undone, Book-it Repertory; Trails, Village Theatre).

Ernest Shackleton Loves Me replaces Nirvanov as the fifth show in Balagan's 2013-14 mainstage season. Nirvanov will not be produced this year due to unforeseen circumstances.

Design by Jeff Gillam

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