NERDS Musical Returns to Philadelphia Theatre Company, 11/29-12/29
It's back - the funny, smart, and irreverent musical Nerds! Philadelphia Theatre Company revisits the musical satire Nerds with book and lyrics by Jordan Allen-Dutton and Erik Weiner, music by HAl Goldberg, and a brand new cast and creative team. Directed by Casey Hushion with choreography by Joshua Bergasse, the ensemble features Stanley Bahorek, Matt Bradley, Briana Carlson-Goodman, Benny Elledge, Lexy Fridell, Raymond J. Lee, Alyse Alan Louis, Robert Morrison, Kevin Pariseau, Catherine Ricafort, and Blake Segal.
Previews begin Friday, November 29 with Opening Night on Wednesday, December 4. Performances run Tuesdays through Sundays until December 29. Tickets starting at $51 are available by calling the PTC Box Office at 215-985-0420 or visiting PhiladelphiaTheatreCompany.org. Philadelphia Theatre Company's Suzanne Roberts Theatre is located at Broad and Lombard Streets in Center City Philadelphia.
Nerds follows the trajectory of America's favorite geeks and rivals, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, from 1970's garage inventors to Silicon Valley mega-billionaires in this musical journey from the floppy disc to the iPhone and beyond.
Nerds received its world premiere at Philadelphia Theatre Company in 2007 where it won Barrymore Awards for Outstanding New Play and Outstanding Original Music.
"When we produced Nerds in 2007, just months before we moved into our new home, the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, it became the sleeper hit of our season. Over the ensuing six years, we received consistent audience requests to 'bring back Nerds! ' but it seemed an impossible task. The script was still in development, Steve Jobs had passed away, and the world had become transformed by the advent of social media," said PTC's Producing Executive Director Sara Garonzik. "We caught up with creators Jordan Allen-Dutton, HAl Goldberg, and Erik Weiner last spring and learned that the script was not only alive and well, but had become even stronger and more of-the-moment. It was ready for an exciting new production, and we are thrilled to bring this new version to Philadelphia."
Erik Weiner and Jordan Allen-Dutton (Book and Lyrics) were co-creators of The Bomb-itty of Errors which won a Drama Desk and Outer Critic's Circle Award, a Jefferson Award in Chicago and the Grand Jury Prize for Best Show at the HBO US Comedy Arts Festival. The team also received three Emmy Award nominations for their writing on Robot Chicken. Weiner served as Head Writer for the 2013 and 2011 MTV Movie Awards and was Creative Producer of the 2011 Emmy Awards. As an actor, he won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series on HBO's Broadwalk Empire. Allen-Dutton signed the first-ever three-tier deal with MTV and Paramount to produce, write and star in the hip-hop sketch comedy series Scratch and Burn for MTV and was subsequently invited to be a fellow at the Sundance Screenwriters Lab.
HAl Goldberg (Music) is the composer of the musical The Children, which was presented as part of the 2006 New York Music Theatre Festival as well as the music for Ma Vie En Rosewood, and A Play Without Gravity.
Casey Hushion (Director) was the Associate Director of the Broadway production of Elf, and the Assistant Director of the Broadway productions and national tours of In The Heights and The Drowsy Chaperone. She also worked as Associate Director of Anyone Can Whistle at City Center Encores! and Minsky's at the Ahmanson Theatre. Other Broadway credits include To Be Or Not To Be at Manhattan Theatre Club and Good Vibrations. With the Boston Pops she has directed concert versions of Carousel and A Little Night Music. Regionally, she has worked at Ogunquit Playhouse, North Shore Music Theater, Paper Mill Playhouse, Goodspeed Opera House, and The Walnut Street Theater.
Joshua Bergasse (Choreographer) is the 2012 Emmy Award-winning choreographer for the NBC drama Smash. Josh recently choreographed Warner Brothers' Secondhand Lions at the Fifth Avenue Theatre, as well as It's a Bird...It's a Plane...It's Superman (NYCC Encores!), The Sound of Music (Carnegie Hall), and the Off-Broadway productions of Bomb-itty of Errors and Captain Louie. For television, Josh also choreographed for Fox's hit So You Think You Can Dance?
Stanley Bahorek (Gates) starred in the Broadway production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Off-Broadway in February House at The Public Theater, The Explorer's Club at Manhattan Theatre Club, and Queen of the Mist and See Rock City, both at Transport Group. Regionally, he has appeared at Alley Theatre, Goodspeed Opera House, Syracuse Stage, Mark Taper Forum, Lincoln Center, and most recently in Honeymoon in Vegas at Paper Mill Playhouse.
Matt Bradley (Jobs) has recently appeared in the world premiere of Dan LeFranc's Troublemaker at Berkeley Repertory Theater and The Hamlet Project in New York. Other credits include The Full Monty and Forever Plaid at Summer Repertory Theatre, The Wedding Singer and The Last Days of Judas Iscariot at Fabrefaction Theatre Company, and A Christmas Carol at American Conservatory Theatre where he earned an MFA.
Briana Carlson-Goodman (Sally) was most recently seen playing Eponine in the 25th Anniversary touring production of Les Miserables. Other credits include the Tony Award-winning revival of Hair on Broadway and the world premiere of Calvin Berger at Gloucester Stage as well as productions at Boston City Lights and the Actor's Studio Theater.
Lexy Fridell (Myrtle) has been featured on Broadway in The Pee Wee Herman Show and in both Off-Broadway and in the first National Tour of Avenue Q. She co-created the role of Dory in Finding Nemo,The Musical for Disney Theatricals and won an Audio File Award for her narration of The Books of Elsewhere.
Raymond J. Lee (Herbert) recently appeared in the world premiere of Jason Robert Brown's Honeymoon in Vegas at Paper Mill Playhouse and was also seen in Stuck Elevator at American Conservatory Theatre. In addition to originating the role of Brother John in Roundabout Theatre Company's Tony Award-winning revival of Anything Goes, his other New York credits include the Broadway production of Mamma Mia, Applause at City Center's Encores!, and Two Gentleman of Verona at The Public Theatre.
Alyse Alan Louis (Thekla) returns to Philadelphia where she has appeared at the Walnut Street Theatre in Brighton Beach Memoirs and The Goodbye Girl and at the Prince Music Theater in Bright Lights, Big City and Hair. On Broadway she starred in Mamma Mia and her Off-Broadway credits include The Civil War at the Lucille Lortel Theater and Bells are Ringing at City Center's Encores!
Robert Morrison (Allen) He has appeared Off-Broadway in Avenue Q and Pinkalicious and regionally in Urinetown at Boston's Lyric Stage, Big River at Goodspeed Opera House, The Full Monty at Studio Playhouse, Floyd Collins at Devanaughn Theater, and Nerds at North Carolina Theatre. He currently voices over 20 different characters on the PBS hit animated series Pig + Cat.
Kevin Pariseau (Watson) has appeared on Broadway in Legally Blonde, The Musical, earning an ACCA Award, and Off-Broadway in I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, The Explorers Club, and Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah. His regional credits include productions at Bucks County Playhouse, Delaware Theatre Company, and North Shore Music Theater. He is the narrator for over 100 audiobooks, receiving an Audie nomination for his reading of The Winds of War and an Earphones Award for Burning Chrome.
Catherine Ricafort (Phyllis) recently appeared in the world premiere of Jason Robert Brown's Honeymoon in Vegas at Paper Mill Playhouse. She has also appeared in the 10th Anniversary case of Mamma Mia on Broadway as well as in the first national tour of A Chorus Line. Regional credits include productions at New York Music Theatre Festival and La Jolla Playhouse.
Blake Segal (Justin) was seen in the national tour of Mary Poppins and regionally in several productions at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Chautauqua Theatre Company, Paper Mill Playhouse, and Yale Repertory Theatre, where he earned his MFA.
Nerds brings together a creative team of PTC veteran designers - set designer Lee Savage (Intimate Apparel) and lighting designer Jason Lyons (Golden Age) - with several new faces - costume designer Thomas Charles LeGalley (associate designer for Kinky Boots), sound designer Nevin Steinberg (Tony nominated for Rodger and Hammerstein's Cinderella) and projection designer Daniel Brodie (Broadway productions of Motown the Musical and Jekyll and Hyde) and Patti Del Sordo is the hair and make-up designer. Additionally, Joshua Bergasse (2012 Emmy Award for Smash) is the choreographer, Matt Doebler (conductor of Broadway productions of Wicked and Book of Mormon) is the music director, Nadia DiGiallonardo serves as music supervisor with orchestrations by Adam Blau.
PTC's mainstage season continues with Tribes by Nina Raine (January 24-February 23); Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike by Christopher Durang (March 21-April 20); and A Boy and His Soul, written and performed by Colman Domingo (May 23-June 22).
Founded in 1974, Philadelphia Theatre Company is a leading regional theatre company whose mission is to produce, develop and present entertaining and imaginative Contemporary Theatre focused on the American experience that both ignites the intellect and touches the soul. By developing new work through commissions, readings and workshops, PTC generates projects that have a national impact and reach broad regional audiences. Under the guidance of PTC's Executive Producing Director, Sara Garonzik, since 1982 and PTC President Priscilla M. Luce, who joined the leadership team in early April of 2013, PTC supports the work of a growing body of diverse dramatists and takes pride in being a home to many nationally recognized artists who have participated in more than 140 world and Philadelphia premieres. PTC has received 46 Barrymore Awards and 155 nominations. In October 2007, PTC opened the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, their home on Philadelphia's Avenue of the Arts, which has helped contribute to the revitalization of Center City Philadelphia's thriving arts district.
For further information, call 215-735-7356.
Meet-the-Artists Talk Backs on Thursday, December 5, and Thursday, December 19 following the evening performance - Join members of the cast and creative team for a post-show discussion
Book Club on Thursday, December 5 at 6:30 PM - Meet before the show to discuss The Soul of a New Machine by Tracy Kidder.
Backstage Tour on Saturday, December 14 - Join PTC's staff for a post-matinee backstage tour of the set.
Special Topics on Tuesday, December 10 - "Talk Nerdy to Me: The Social Dialect of the Tech Generation" panel and discussion immediately following the performance
PTC Happy Hour - Mix, mingle, and enjoy great drink specials at PTC's pre-show happy hour from 6:30pm to curtain every Friday during production.