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Pittsburg CLO's Summer Season To Feature B'way Talent

Pittsburgh CLO's Summer Season 2008 will feature an outstanding array of Broadway stars and musical theater's most respected directors and choreographers.  Performers such as Tom Hewitt from Broadway's Dracula and Max von Essen from Broadway's Les Miserable will be teamed with exceptional directors like Glenn Casale from Peter Pan.
"As one of the nation's largest musical theater producers, Pittsburgh CLO continues to attract Broadway actors, directors and choreographers to our Summer Season at the Benedum Center," explained CLO's Executive Producer, Van Kaplan.  "These talented teams of individuals are certain to give our patrons another unforgettable summer of spectacular shows." 
Peter Pan: June 21 – July 2
Tom Hewitt will return to Pittsburgh CLO as Captain Hook.  Mr. Hewitt was last seen at CLO starring in Doctor Dolittle and boasts numerous Broadway credits including Dracula, Rocky Horror Show, Disney's Lion King, Boys from Syracus, ART, The Sisters Rosensweig and The School for Scandal.  He has also appeared on television in "Third Watch," "Frasier," "The George Carlin Show," "Guiding Light," "One Life to Live" and Julie Taymor's "Fool's Fire."
Glenn Casale will also return to Pittsburgh CLO to direct Peter Pan after directing Oklahoma! starring Shirley Jones in last year's Summer Season.  Mr. Casale directed Broadway's Peter Pan starring Cathy Rigby (Tony Award nomination Best Revival) which was filmed by A&E and garnered two Emmy Awards.  He also directed Pittsburgh CLO's productions of Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Doctor Dolittle, Hello Dolly, My Fair Lady and Brigadoon.
Broadway veteran Dana Solimando will make her CLO debut as choreographer for Peter Pan.  Ms. Solimando's Broadway credits include SWING!, Peter Pan and Cats.  Her National Tour credits include Grease, A Chorus Line, Oklahoma!, Gypsy and Cats.
Cathy Rigby has been previously announced as Peter Pan.
Mame: July 8 -13
Broadway actress Ruth Williamson will play the role of Vera.  Ms. Williamson's film credits include "Evan Almighty", "The Producers," "Legally Blonde 2," "Family Man," and "Malcolm X."  Her television credits include "American Body Shop," "Hannah Montana" and recurring roles in "Enterprise," "Nip Tuck" and "The O.C."  She has also been seen on Broadway in La Cage aux Folles, The Music Man (Revival), Little Me, Guys and Dolls, and Smile.  Her off Broadway credits include DuBarry Was A Lady, Swingtime Canteen and Preppies.
CLO veteran Donna Lynne Champlin, who delighted audiences last season as Georgie Bukatinsky in
The Full Monty, will play the role of Agnes Gooch in Mame.  She was last seen on Broadway as 'Pirelli' in John Doyle's Tony® Award-Winning revival of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd.  Her other Broadway credits include: Hollywood Arms, By Jeeves and James Joyce's The Dead. Ms. Champlin was also the 2007 January headliner for the CLO Cabaret Late Night with her one-woman show titled "Finishing the Hat".  She is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and in 1993 portrayed the role of Dorothy in the CLO production of the Wizard of Oz. 
Film, voice and Broadway veteran Mary Stout will take the stage as Madame Branislowski, Mrs. Upson and Mother Burnside in Mame.  Ms. Stout boasts Broadway credits including Beauty and the Best, Jane Eyre,
My Favorite Year, Me and My Girl, Copperfield and A Change in the Heir.
Director Richard Sabellico will team with choreographer Richard Stafford in telling the classic story of Mame.  Mr. Sabellico's work was most recently seen in CLO's 2004 production of The Music Man starring Jeff Goldblum, Funny Girl in 2003 and George M! in 2002.   Mr. Stafford directed and choreographed CLO's critically acclaimed 2007 production of Cats.  On Broadway, Mr. Stafford acted as the choreographer for In My Life, the associate choreographer for Aspects of Love and dance supervisor for Cats.
Smokey Joe's Café: July 15 – 20
Barry Ivan will return to CLO to direct and choreograph the heart-pounding musical Smokey Joe's Café.  Mr. Ivan's previous CLO director and choreographer credits include A Little Night Music, Company, Anything Goes, Miss Saigon, West Side Story and the 2007 production of The Full Monty.   Mr. Ivan is associated with theatres throughout the US and Europe ranging from Guest Director at Yale to the German State Opera.  Mr. Ivan was also recently named Executive Producer of North Shore Music Theater in Beverly, Massachusetts.
Annie Get Your Gun:  July 22 – August 3
Jenn Colella will play the lead role of Annie Oakley.  She most recently starred on Broadway in the new musical High Fidelity and also played Sissy in Urban Cowboy, for which she garnered an Outer Critic's Circle Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical. She originated the leading role of Cleo in the world premier of the Twyla Tharp/Bob Dylan musical The Times They Are A-Changin' at the Old Globe Theatre. Her Off-Broadway credits include Unbeatable: A Musical Journey, Don't Quit Your Night Job, Dance With Me, SLUT and The Great American Trailer Park Musical.
Director Charles Repole will return to the CLO after directing last season's White Christmas.  Mr. Repole has directed numerous productions for CLO including 42nd Street starring Tom Wopat, Annie starring Sally Struthers, Singing in the Rain, My Fair Lady, Carousel and Cinderella. His New York City and Broadway directing credits include the highly acclaimed concert versions of Dubarry was a Lady starring Faith Prince and Robert Morse and Call Me Madam starring Tyne Daly for the prestigious City Center Encores! series, the revival of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (which originated at the Goodspeed Opera House), The Lauri Strauss Leukemia Foundation Benefit at Carnegie Hall starring Regis Philbin, Marvin Hamlisch, Judy Collins, Ann Reinking and the New York Pops conducted by Skitch Henderson.
West Side Story:  August 5 – 17
Broadway veteran Max von Essen will return to the Pittsburgh CLO as Tony.  Max was last seen at the CLO as Frederick in Pirates of Penzance in 2005.  His Broadway credits include Enjolras and Jean Prouvaire in Les Miserables, Alfred in Dance of the Vampires and Apostle/Jesus in
Jesus Christ Superstar.
CLO welcomes Broadway's Ali Ewoldt to the Benedum stage this summer in the role of Maria in West Side Story.  Her leading credits include Cosette in Les Miserables on Broadway and the National Tour.
West Side Story will be directed by Pittsburgh CLO Executive Producer Van Kaplan.  Mr. Kaplan's directing credits include Kopit & Yeston's Phantom, On the Town, Sweeney Todd with Candy Buckley, South Pacific with Cathy Rigby, Nunsense, Shear Madness, Ruthless, She Loves Me, Guys and Dolls with Georgia Engel and the regional premiere of Andrew Bovell's Speaking in Tongues.
Mr. Kaplan will be joined by CLO veteran Mark Esposito as choreographer. Mr. Esposito has choreographed several CLO productions including Brigadoon, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler on the Roof, She Loves Me,
The Music Man, Tommy, Carousel and Oklahoma!.  He has performed in over 16 Broadway and National Tours and has assisted or worked for Jerome Robbins, Michael Kidd, Agnes de Mille, Michael Bennett, Rob Marshall, Bob Fosse, Donald Saddler, Gillian Lynn, Trevor Nunn, David Lee and Jerry Zaks.
Tickets for Summer Season 2008
Pittsburgh CLO offers family-affordable and flexible season ticket packages to fit even the busiest summer schedule.  Subscriptions including The Color Purple range from $66.50 - $182.00 and subscriptions not including The Color Purple range from $55.50 - $163.50.
Full and partial Season Subscriptions are now available.  The 6-Show Premium Series allows subscribers to see all six award-winning summer musicals!  Flexible subscriptions also allow subscribers to design their own season.  Subscribers can choose a 3-Show Subscription Series or the Fun-Flex Series which lets Subscribers choose three shows of their choice.  A complete list of subscription options is available at  Subscriptions can be ordered online at or by calling (412) 281-2822.
Pittsburgh CLO's 2008 Season also is the perfect outing for any social group. Groups of 10 or more should call the Group Sales Hotline at 412-325-1582 to learn more about special discounts and priority seating for all CLO-produced shows.  Priority seating is also available for groups of 20 or more for The Color Purple.
Pittsburgh CLO gratefully acknowledges the generosity of PNC for its sponsorship of the PNC Spotlight Series, our Season Sponsors: American Airlines, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and WTAE-TV, and The Bank of New York Mellon as the official sponsor of Peter Pan.
For more information please visit 

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