Harbor Lights Theater to Stage RENT This Fall
The Harbor Lights Theater Company (Harbor Lights), a professional Equity Theater Company based in Staten Island, led by Founders and Artistic Directors Tamara Jenkins and Jay Montgomery, will stage Rent - 20th Anniversary Celebration! September 18- October 4th at the Snug Harbor Music Hall.
This landmark 1996 Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning musical will be helmed by award winning director Alex Perez. Mr. Perez has a long history with show, having toured with it nationally, and having directed seven previous productions.
"When we decided we wanted to do Rent to celebrate the show's 20th year, we were clear that we didn't want a re-mounting. We did not want a carbon copy. We wanted a new vision for the show. We wanted a fresh, young, cast - not of imitators, but of real people. We have found a superbly talented cast to bring the show to life at Harbor Lights and a director with a clear, new vision." says Executive Artistic Director Tamara Jenkins.
Concerning his new vision of the show, director Alex Perez stated, "This production will have a fresh rebelling - told with strong movement and dance. Jonathan Larsen stated in interviews how he really wanted Rent to be the new 'MTV for Broadway'. What was imperative for MTV at the time and was strongly prevalent then, were music videos with strong, bold choreography and visuals. I'm treating the show as a long form music video. Telling the story through dance, and the timeless music by Jonathan Larsen. It's enough to satisfy RENT fans, and to intrigue new audiences. Storytelling through movement and song. That's where we give it a fresh new look after 20 years."
Based on Puccini's La Boheme, Rent transfers Puccini's young artists to New York City's East Village and bohemian Alphabet City at the end of the millennium. Rent is a celebration of friendship, survival, and the struggle to find meaning in life. Written by the late Jonathan Larsen, Rent's rollicking score boasts "One Song Glory," "Take Me or Leave Me," "I'll Cover You," and the now iconic pop anthem "Seasons of Love."
The cast features Travis Artz (Roger,) Nick Devito (Mark,) Denzel Edmondson (Benny,) Madeline B. Fansler (Joanne,) Monte J. Howell (Tom Collins,) Michael J. Mainwaring (Angel,) Emily Jeanne Phillips (Mimi,) and Zuri Washington (Maureen.)
Filling out the cast are Philip Bolton, Hannah K MacDonald, Nate McClure, Gavyn Pickens, Ben Rosenbach, Michael Sheehy (Gordon,) and Josephine Spada.
Charles Santoro is the Musical Director, Kia Rogers will handle Lighting Design, Nathaniel Butler Sound Design, Carl Tallent Set Design, and Kurt Alger will handle costume design. Natalie Wisniewski is Props Mistress, Production Stage Manager is Brendan O'Brien, Assistant Stage Manager is Chris Luner, and Technical Direction is Michael Mastromarino.
Harbor Lights is the first and only professional Equity Theater Company in Staten Island's history. Since founding Harbor Lights in 2010, Broadway veterans and Harbor Lights Founding Artistic Directors Tamara Jenkins and Jay Montgomery, have begun building a bridge from Broadway to Staten Island, bringing the nation's best to work with their community's finest. In four seasons of producing plays and musicals, Harbor Lights has presented over 75 Broadway professionals, including Tony, Grammy, Oscar, Emmy, Drama Desk, and Obie award-winning and - nominated artists, in sixteen productions at Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Gardens. www.hltc.org.
Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden is one of the largest ongoing adaptive reuse projects in America. It consists of 26 historical buildings, numerous distinctive botanical gardens and 10 acres of wetlands on a unique 83-acre campus in Staten Island. Formerly Sailors' Snug Harbor, a home for retired sailors built in the 1800s, Snug Harbor is now a distinguished regional arts center where history, architecture, visual art, theater, dance, music, environmental science and botanical gardens provide dynamic experiences for all ages. Snug Harbor is also home to the Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art, the Noble Maritime Collection, Art Lab, Staten Island Children's Museum, and the Staten Island Museum. Snug Harbor is a proud Smithsonian affiliate. Visit us at www.snug-harbor.org, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.