THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS Begins Previews 3/10 At ATA

Commander Squish Productions in association with Michael Roderick and Small Pond Entertainment, presents the Off-Broadway premiere of THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS beginning previews March 10 at American Theater of Actors. A hit at the 2002 New York International Fringe Festival, this new musical features music and lyrics by Nate Weida and a book co-written by Weida and Sarah Donnell. Jim Wren directs a cast that features an ensemble of 20 actors backed by a 5 piece rock band. Opening night is slated for Saturday, March 14.

THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS is set in an average US town called Hopeville. Here, your average superhero named Perfect Man protects its trusting and oblivious citizens against danger. His good deeds include grabbing a pair of scissors out of the hands of a running boy and rescuing the mayor's baby from falling out of a window. All is swell until Perfect Man's girlfriend rejects him. He loses his confidence and his power. Soon Perfect Man meets his demise in the form of a villainous trio (Sex, Drugs and Rockenroll) who have been gleefully waiting for their opportunity to turn the unsuspecting town to chaos. Can the citizens wise-up, band together to fight villainy and put the hope back into Hopeville?

THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS features music direction by Tim Matson, production design by Steve Royal, choreography by Ashley Adamek, artwork by Batton Lash, lighting design by David Sexton, costumes by Denise Schumaker, and general management by Amanda Axelrod of Lexador Productions LLC. The production stars John Bennett, Terren Wooten Clarke, Carolyn Cole, Chris Critelli, Shannon DeVido, Sarah Hayes Donnell, Heather Dudenbostel, christine dwyer, Nick Gelona, Michelle Guadalupe, Wes Jetton, Shira Kobren, Patrick Link, Terra Mackintosh, Carl Conway Maguire, Jay Paranada, Aaron Phillips, J.T. Michael Taylor, John Wellington-Simon, and Scott Lee Williams.

While studying music composition at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, composer Nate Weida wrote and produced four original musicals including The New Hopeville Comics and Byuioo, which were produced at the 2002 and 2005 New York International Fringe Festivals, respectively.

Sarah Donnell earned her BA in Dramatic Art at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Sarah has recently appeared in original projects at The New York Theatre Workshop, The Ensemble Studio Theatre, and Atlantic Theatre Company Studios.

Director Jim Wren is coordinator of the Performance Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He also serves as Resident Fight Choreographer for Triad Stage and is also the Artistic Director of THTR 232, the annual summer theatre festival co-produced by UNCG Theatre and Triad Stage. In 2001 he received the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion for Excellence in Theatre Education and in 2005 was named Outstanding Teacher of Acting in the Southeast. In 2006 he directed The Irene Ryan Evening of Scenes at the Kennedy Center and Moonlight and Magnolias at the Hippodrome State Theatre in Gainesville, Florida. In New York, he directed The Blue Martini for Kids With Guns at the New York International Fringe Festival.

THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS run March 10 - 28 on the following performance schedule: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday - Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 3pm. American Theater of Actors is located at 315 West 54th Street (accessible from the C,E trains at 50th Street). Tickets are $25, $15 for students available at 212-352-3101 or www.TheaterMania.com. For more information visit www.newhopevillecomics.com.

 

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