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Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE

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The award-winning Astoria Performing Arts Center (APAC) is pleased to present a behind the scenes look at rehearsals for THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE, with music & lyrics by William Finn, book by Rachel Sheinkin, conceived by Rebecca Feldman, additional material by Jay Reiss, choreographed by Misha Shields, music directed by Michael Ferrara, directed by Artistic Director Dev Bondarin. The limited engagement will be at Good Shepherd United Methodist Church, 30-44 Crescent St (@30th Rd), in Astoria, Queens. Performances begin Thursday, May 5 and continue through Saturday, May 28. Tickets are available at www.apacny.org.

Each member of a lovable, eclectic group of middle schoolers is eager to win the spelling bee. During the proceedings, led by our fearless leaders Rona and Vice Principal Panch, we meet shy Olive, returning champ Chip, distractible Leaf, overachiever Marcy, activist Logainne, and self-assured William and his "magic foot." Through spelling and hilarious song, the struggles and dreams of the participants are revealed and explored as we root for each one. With a tuneful score and lyrics by William Finn (Falsettos, A New Brain) and a heartfelt, funny book by Rachel Sheinkin, this show leaves us laughing as we are each able to see ourselves in the characters and remember a time when we too put everything on the line to win it all.

THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE is based on Rebecca Feldman's improvisational play C-R-E-P-U-S-C-U-L-E and was first workshopped at Barrington Stage Company in 2004. Directed by James Lapine and choreographed by Dan Knetchges, the original New York production opened in 2005 at Second Stage. The production transferred to Broadway where it ran at the Circle in the Square for almost three years winning two Tony Awards--Best Book and Best Featured Actor. Since then the show has been performed across the country and all over the world.

The production stars Becca Andrews* (Grease; St. Louis MUNY, A Chorus Line; Maltz Jupiter) as Olive Ostrovsky, Emily Borromeo* (NBC's "The Sing Off," NYMF's F***ing Hipsters) as Marcy Park, Heslens Estevez (Spring Awakening; Colony Theater-Miami) as Logainne Schwartzandgrubenierre, Patrick Halley* (The Misanthrope; The Pearl Theatre, Good People; Cleveland Playhouse) as William Barfee, Billy Lowrimore (Brother Brother; Abrams Art Center) as Mitch Mahoney, Stephen Mark (NYMF's The Calico Buffalo, National Tour of Anything Goes) as Chip Tolentino, Lee Slobotkin* (National Tour of Wicked) as Leaf Conybear, Lindsie VanWinkle* (Nevermore; Off B'way @ New World Stages, National Tour of White Christmas) as Rona Lisa Peretti, and Matt Welsh* (APAC's Merrily We Roll Along, The Full Monty; Human Race Theater) as Vice Principal Douglas Panch. *Performing courtesy of Actors' Equity Association. AEA approved Showcase.

The production features scenic design by Tim McMath (B'way's Fun Home (Associate), Magic Trick (Caps Lock Theatre), costume design by Jennifer Jacob (B'way's She Loves Me (Assistant), APAC's Merrily We Roll Along), and lighting design by Adam Honoré (Dancing With the Movies (National Tour). Arielle Edwards (APAC's Merrily We Roll Along) is the sound designer, Kaye Blankenship is the props designer and Nicole Richards is the production stage manager.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Billy Lowrimore and Lee Slobotkin. Photo by Terence O'Kane.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Emily Borromeo, Choreographer Misha Shields, Patrick Halley, and Becca Andrews. Photo by Terence O'Kane.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Billy Lowrimore, Heslens Estevez, Emily Borromeo, Patrick Halley, and Becca Andrews. Photo by Terence O'Kane.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Lindsie VanWinkle, and Matt Welsh. Photo by Terence O'Kane.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Patrick Halley, and Becca Andrews. Photo by Terence O'Kane.

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for APAC's THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
Stephen Mark. Photo by Terence O'Kane.


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