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Darko Tresnjak-Helmed KISS ME, KATE Extends Through Aug 9 at The Old Globe

The Old Globe's presentation of Kiss Me, Kate, the classic musical comedy featuring a book by Sam and Bella Spewack and an iconic score by Cole Porter, will now add a week by popular demand and run through August 9 on the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the Old Globe Theatre, part of the Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center. Tickets for the extension will go on sale this Sunday, July 12 at noon.

This spectacular revival, a co-production with Hartford Stage, is choreographed by Peggy Hickey and directed by Hartford Stage Artistic Director and former Old Globe Shakespeare Festival Artistic Director Darko Tresnjak, who won the 2014 Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical for A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, which made its world premiere at The Old Globe and Hartford Stage in 2013. The Hartford Stage engagement ran May 14 - June 14.

Following the backstage antics of a touring production of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, the Globe's production of Kiss Me, Kate runs concurrently with the theatre's annual Shakespeare Festival and continues the Globe's 80th Anniversary festivities as part of the Balboa Park Centennial Celebration. Single tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park.

Fresh off his Tony Award-winning smash, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Darko Tresnjak returns to the Globe to helm one of the greatest romantic musical comedies of all time. Cole Porter's witty and high-spirited songs will transport you into the wings as a touring company gets ready to open a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew, starring a divorced couple whose offstage battles threaten to bring down the curtain. This beloved classic features show-stopping dance numbers, Shakespeare-quoting mobsters, and a knockout score including "Another Op'nin', Another Show," "Wunderbar," "So In Love," and "Brush Up Your Shakespeare." Get ready for a sizzling summer evening that's simply "Too Darn Hot"!

Mike McGowan (Priscilla Queen of the Desert on Broadway) and Anastasia Barzee (Urinetown on Broadway) star as former lovers and reluctant co-stars Fred/Petruchio and Lilli/Kate. The cast also features Megan Sikora as Lois/Bianca (Curtains on Broadway) and Tyler Hanes as Bill/Lucentio (A Chorus Line on Broadway), Joel Blum as First Man (Tony Award nominee for Show Boat and Steel Pier) and Brendan Averett as Second Man (The Killer at Theatre for a New Audience), and Tony Lawson as General Harrison Howell (LES MISERABLES on Broadway). The marvelous company also includes Giovanni Bonaventura as Hortensio (Cinderella on Broadway), James T. Lane as Paul (The Scottsboro Boys on Broadway), Barrett Martin as Gremio (Side Show on Broadway), Robin Masella as Momo (Chicago national tour), Shina Ann Morris as Venetia (Cinderella on Broadway), Jane Papageorge as Becki Weckio (Hair at the Hollywood Bowl), Wayne W. Pretlow as Pops/Priest (The Most Happy Fella at City Center Encores!), Mike Sears as Ralph (the Globe's Othello), Michael Starr as Philip (Guys and Dolls in L.A.), Jeff Steitzer as Harry Trevor/Baptista Minola (The Front Page at Long Wharf Theatre), Johnny Stellard as Nathaniel (Evita on Broadway), and Aurelia Williams as Hattie (Off Broadway hit Sistas the Musical).

The creative team includes Alexander Dodge (Scenic Design), Fabio Toblini (Costume Design), Philip S. Rosenberg (Lighting Design), Jonathan Deans (Sound Design), Kris Kukul (Music Director), Jason Allen (Wig Design), Claudia Hill-Sparks (Vocal and Text Coach), J. Allen Suddeth (Fight Director), Binder Casting (Casting), Max Mamon (Associate Music Director), and Anjee Nero (Production Stage Manager).

"Kiss Me, Kate is one of the great musicals, full of charm, wit, and fun," said Old Globe Artistic Director Barry Edelstein. "I can't think of a more entertaining show to place at the center of our celebratory Summer Season, and I can't think of a better director than my friend and colleague Darko Tresnjak to helm it. I'm looking forward to every second."

"I started thinking about directing Kiss Me, Kate in 1990, when the influential album Red Hot + Blue: A Tribute to Cole Porter introduced his smart and sexy music to a whole new generation," said Darko Tresnjak. "After 25 years, I'm thrilled to finally get a chance to direct this supreme entertainment-a piece in which my two great theatrical passions, the plays of William Shakespeare and the American musical theatre, come together."

The original 1949 production of Kiss Me, Kate ran for more than 1,000 performances on Broadway and won the first Tony Award for Best Musical. It was recently announced that the cast album will be added to the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry.

In addition to Kiss Me, Kate, the legendary Cole Porter's shows included Anything Goes, Can-Can, Silk Stockings, and DuBarry Was a Lady. Husband-and-wife writing team Sam and Bella Spewack's credits include the films My Favorite Wife (Academy Award nomination) and Week-End at the Waldorf starring Ginger Rogers, as well as the play My Three Angels. The Spewacks each won two Tony Awards for Kiss Me, Kate.

Darko Tresnjak won the Tony, the Drama Desk, the Outer Critics Circle, the Connecticut Critics Circle, and the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Craig Noel Awards for his direction of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder. He recently won the Obie Award for his direction of The Killer, with Michael Shannon, at Theatre for a New Audience. His favorite Old Globe credits include The Women, Cyrano de Bergerac, and Pericles. His recent directing credits include Hamlet at Hartford Stage, where he is the Artistic Director, and The Ghosts of Versailles, with Patti LuPone, at LA Opera. Tresnjak's pcoming productions include the stage thriller Rear Window and the world premiere musical Anastasia, both at Hartford Stage, and the national tour of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.

Peggy Hickey made her Broadway debut with A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, which she also choreographed in the show's world premiere at The Old Globe and Hartford Stage. Her New York theatre credits include The Most Happy Fella, La Rondine, Lucky to Be Me (the Leonard Bernstein tribute at New York City Center), My Fair Lady, Hansel und Gretel ("Live from Lincoln Center"), Antony and Cleopatra, and Babes in Toyland. Her regional credits include Carnival, Amour, A Little Night Music, King of Hearts, On the Twentieth Century, and Brigadoon (Goodspeed Musicals), among others. Her film and television credits include The Brady Bunch Movie and the music video for Beck's "The New Pollution" (MTV Video Music Award).

Kiss Me, Kate is supported in part through gifts from Karen and Donald Cohn, Peter Cooper and Norman Blachford, Pam Farr and Buford Alexander, Kathryn Hattox, Conrad Prebys and Debra Turner, Gloria Rasmussen, and June Yoder. Artist Sponsor for Mike McGowan is Jordine Von Wantoch, Artist Sponsor for Anastasia Barzee is Lynne and Steve Wheeler.

Tickets to The Old Globe's engagement of Kiss Me, Kate are currently available as part of a Season Package. Single tickets start at $39 and are now on sale. Subscription prices for the 2015 Summer Season range from $115 to $346. Subscription packages and single tickets may be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE, or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park. Performances begin on July 1 and continue through August 9. Performance times: Opening night is Thursday, July 9 at 8:00 p.m. Regular Performances: Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m., Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday evenings at 7:00 p.m. There will be no performance on Saturday, July 25, and there will be an 8:00 p.m. performance on Monday, July 27. Discounts are available for full-time students, patrons 29 years of age and under, seniors, and groups of 10 or more.

The Tony Award-winning Old Globe is one of the country's leading professional regional theatres and has stood as San Diego's flagship arts institution for over 75 years. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barry Edelstein and Managing Director Michael G. Murphy, The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 14 productions of classic, contemporary, and new works on its three Balboa Park stages: the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the 600-seat Old Globe Theatre and the 250-seat Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, both part of The Old Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, and the 605-seat outdoor Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, home of its internationally renowned Shakespeare Festival. More than 250,000 people attend Globe productions annually and participate in the theatre's education and community programs. Numerous world premieres such as 2014 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, A Catered Affair, and the annual holiday musical Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to enjoy highly successful runs on Broadway and at regional theatres across the country.

Photo Credit: T Charles Erickson


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