Richard Isen's CHANCE to Make World Premiere at Alcove Theater, Begin. Tonight

By: Jul. 05, 2013
Enter Your Email to Unlock This Article

Plus, get the best of BroadwayWorld delivered to your inbox, and unlimited access to our editorial content across the globe.

Existing user? Just click login.

After its workshop production at the York Theatre in NYC in Nov. 2011, Chance - A Musical Play about Love, Risk & Getting it Right -will be having the its world premiere staging at The Alcove Theatre in SF, beginning tonight, July 5, and running through July 28, 2013.

Performances run Thurs. & Fri. 8:00 pm / Sat. 2 shows - 3:00 & 8:00 pm / Sun. - 5:00 pm; Previews are Fri. & Sat. July 5 and 6. Opening Night Sun. July 7, 2013 - 5:00 pm Press nights Sun. July 7- 5:00 pm and Thurs. July 11 - 8:00 pm. The Alcove Theatre is located at 414 Mason St. 5th floor, in San Francisco.

Tickets are $40- $60 ($40 tickets are general admission; $60 "premium" seats include reserved stage-side cabaret seating, complementary wine, gift bag and more!) available at For more info call 415- 992- 8168.

A gay psychologist and a handsome young rent boy stumble down a unique path to healing when guided by a mysterious Hollywood glamor queen (played by gender illusionist). 55 year old Gregory has spent his adult life denying the loss he experienced as a young man during AIDS crisis. After a near-death experience, The Lady appears. Is she an inner guide from the Jungian collective unconscious? Or a musical hallucination resulting from a small stroke? Gregory is pushed out of his solitary reality, by his unlikely muse, and down the rabbit hole of mid-life crisis where he enters into a turbulent, dangerous relationship with a young male escort named "Chance."

This production contains strong language, adult situations and partial nudity.

Directed by legendary theater icon Robert Kalfin (founder of the Tony Award-winning Chelsea Theatre Center) and musical direction by local jazz artistTammy L. Hall, this unique theatrical cocktail will be one part fun, one part heart, and one part magic.

Chance - A Musical Play about Love, Risk & Getting it Right features Richard Hefner (Gregory) (YouTube viral hit Girls and Boys), RAndy Roberts (The Lady) (Gender Illusionist - RAndy Roberts LIVE), Ken Lear (Chance) (Naked Boys Singing - NYC).

Technical credits include: Scenery by Tony Dunnigan, costumes by Corrine H. DiTullio, Lighting by Dylan West; Music, book and lyrics by Richard Isen (The York's Theatre's A Fine Private Place); Musical Direction by jazz artist Tammy Hall. The show is directed by Robert Kalfin (founder of Tony Award-winning Chelsea Theatre Center).

The show is produced by New Musical Theater of San Francisco, one of a handful of companies in the US, devoted exclusively to the development of new musical theater. Richard Isen is a member of NMTSF's resident writing company, Pen and Piano that produced the original revue, Show Me Yours - Songs of Innocence and Experience, in April 2012. NMTSF (formerly Not Quite Opera Productions) was founded by Artistic Director Anne Nygren Doherty and is best known for its long running hit Absolutely San Francisco.


Richard Hefner (Gregory) grew up in rural Utah. Following a senior year of high school in France, he studied acting, directing and music at the University of Utah. He then spent a year studying Zen Buddhism at Tassajara Zen Mountain Monastery and Green Gulch Farm in the Bay Area. Upon leaving the monastery, he gardened, taught acting and produced new theatre in Sun Valley, Idaho, co-founding The New Theatre Company with David Hemmings (Blow Up), and starring in a number of new theatre works, working with a number of Hollywood "heavy-hitters." Five years later, he moved to Manhattan, where he began songwriting in earnest, working at La Mama and with Susan Kaessinger Improvisation troop. Following September 11, 2001, and after playing Hal in Proof in a regional production, he moved to Los Angeles, where he is a member of the Academy of New Musical Theatre. He works as an art director, actor, writer and producer. He met author Isen during The Fantastiks, where he played Harry, the Old Shakespearean actor. When Isen was writing Chance - A New Musical Play about Love, Risk and Getting it Right, he called Hefner and asked him about his monastery experience, with some those tales appearing in the play.

Ken Lear (Chance) Ken Lear is thrilled to be making his West Coast and San Francisco debut with Chance - A New Musical Play about Love, Risk and Getting it Right. He lives in NYC where he has been seen at Radio City Musical Hall as a featured singer for The Rockettes (2007-2010) and off-Broadway in the international hit, Naked Boys Singing! Regional Theater: I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change (Man 2), Singin' in the Rain (Production Tenor), andGrease (Roger) at the Palace Theatre; The Sound of Music (Rolf) at Carousel Theatre; Forever Plaid (Sparky) at NE Ohio Repertory Theatre. Bachelor of Music in Musical Theatre from Baldwin-Wallace University Conservatory.

RAndy Roberts (The Lady) has been entertaining audiences, for over 30 years. He's been seen off-Broadway in the workshop of Chance - A New Musical Play about Love, Risk and Getting it Right (formerly called Give a Man a Mask) at the York Theatre; on TV in ABC's "One Life To Live" He made his movie debut in the award winning indie film "Any Day Now" starring Alan Cumming. Randy is currently headlining in THE CRYSTAL ROOM CABARET at Lateda in Key West, FL. He can be seen regularly at The Alibi in Wilton Manors, FL. He's been seen on the Las Vegas strip in BOY-LESQUE at the Sahara and Stardust hotels and AN EVENING AT LA CAGE at the Riviera Hotel.

Randy has starred in HOLLYWOOD LEGENDS at the Sand's Hotel and Casino, San Juan, PR, MASQUERADE at Xenon Music Hall in Madrid, Spain, BOY-LESQUE at the Beachcomber Hotel in Honolulu, HI, CARNIVAL LA CAGE at the Palace Casino in Biloxi, MS, LA CAGE FOLLIES at New Palace Casino in Biloxi, MS, LA CAGE FOLLIES at the State Line Hotel/Casino in Wendover, NV, CAMOUFLAGE CABARET at Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, NJ, Howard Crabtree's When Pigs Fly at Red Barn Theatre in Key West, FL.

The RAndy Roberts Show is an all live, multi-media tribute to some of the world's most loved performers. Randy's impersonations of Cher and Bette Midler have kept him in the spotlight for the past 20 years. His roster of famous and infamous ladies also includes: Mae West, Joan Crawford, Carol Channing, Ann Miller, Phyllis Diller (an act which landed him on "The Jenny Jones Show" with the real Phyllis Diller), and a bevy of original ladies, including a tribute to Gypsy Rose Lee with a strip tease that leaves little to the imagination and the audience rolling in the aisles, and audience favorite: Consuela - The Latin Showgirl! He closes every show with a mini-lounge act, allowing him the chance to get up-close and personal with his audience. The fact that he is bilingual makes him a favorite in clubs in Puerto Rico and Spain. Randy's talents aren't reserved for the stage. He is an accomplished lyricist, an adept sound technician, a talented writer, and a successful producer.

Richard Isen's (author) musical theater works include: A Fine & Private Place in collaboration with Erik Haagensen, premiered Off Broadway at the York Theatre in New York City in 2006 and is published by Samuel French. The original cast recording is due out on Jay Records featuring 2010 Tony nomineeChristiane Noll, Glenn Seven Allen, Evalyn Baron and Joe Kolinski. The work, originally developed at The Eugene O'Neill Center Opera/Music Theater Conference received a full production at Goodspeed Opera House and the American Stage Company in Teaneck, NJ as well a numerous stock and amateur productions throughout the world.

Other musical theater works include Salford Road: A Musical Photograph, (written with Grammy Award Winning producer Stefan Rudnicki, poet Gareth Owen and winner of The Edinburgh Festival Fringe First Award), My Father's Son with librettist Enid Futterman and awarded a CBS Development Grand,Night City Diaries, a cabaret piece based on poet Arthur Rimbaud produced by Playwright's Horizons, and The Bluebird: A Christmas Musical, commissioned to inaugurate The Next Stage Theater in Sun Valley, Idaho and produced by The Sun Valley Repertory Company.

Richard has written music for New York theater artists and companies including Obie award winning Lee Nagrin's groundbreaking WHORL at the St. Mark's Church, La Mama and Mabou Mines as well as the 10 minute musical, Dear Someone, commissioned by The Public Theater with a libretto by Jack Eric Williams. His works have been performed at The Woodstock Opera House, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, The Public Theater, CW Post Long Island University.

Besides his work in theatre, he's composed music for film, TV (- an Emmy nomination for original music), radio and beep-tone music for some of the very first commercial software available on Apple Computer.Richard holds an MFA in Musical Theater (Writing Program) from NYU Tisch School of the Artswhere his principal teachers included Richard Maltby Jr., Peter Stone, Sheldon Harnick, Martin Charnin and composer Richard Peaslee. He is a member ofASCAP and The Dramatist's Guild

Robert Kalfin (director) Founder of New York's Chelsea Theatre Center, [winner for its work of five Tony Awards, four Tony nominations and 21 Obie Awards], Mr. Kalfin has directed more than 200 productions and workshops of new plays, musicals and the classics in venues on Broadway, Off-Broadway, in major American regional theaters, in Europe, the Middle East and as far abroad as Siberia. [The book, Chelsea On The Edge, details his contribution to the American Theater].

Broadway credits include STRIDER, HAPPY END [starring Meryl Streep and Christopher Lloyd], YENTL [starring Tovah Feldshuh], TRULY BLESSED [A Celebration of Mahalia Jackson]; and as Chelsea Co-Producer of Harold Prince's production of CANDIDE. He staged RASHOMON and THE MISTRESS OF THE INN [starringTovah Feldshuh] for the Roundabout Theatre Company, and directed the TV production of THE PRINCE OF HOMBURG starring Frank Langella for PBS Great Performances "Theatre in America" Series. [The latter now available on DVD].

OTHELLO for the Cornell Schwarz Performing Arts Center; Eugene O'Neill's ANNA CHRISTIE at the Metropolitan Playhouse; the off-Broadway productions of William Mastrosimone's A STONE CARVER; OUTWARD BOUND for the Keene Company, [Nominated for two Drama Desk Awards];and the recent Mirror Rep Production of THE SHANGHAI GESTURE.

Other representative productions include Brecht's LIFE OF GALILEO at the NYU Skirball Performing Arts Center. His work abroad includes the London Premiere of THE DISPUTATION; STRIDER for the Haifa Municipal Theatre and at the Habima Theater in Israel; the Russian Language Premieres of THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH for the Krasne Fakel Theater in Novosibirsk, Siberia and Tennessee Williams' THE ECCENTRICITIES OF A NIGHTINGALE for the Sfera Theatre in Moscow; as well an English Language Scandinavian tour of THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH starring E.G. Marshall and Sada Thompson. Mr. Kalfin's career includes directing such artists as F. Murray Abraham, Lucy Arnaz, Elizabeth Ashley, Theo Bikel, Marilyn Chris, Joan Copeland, Charles Durning, Alvin Epstein, Tovah Feldshuh, Paul Hecht, Jack Klugman, Frank Langella, Dan Lauria, Christopher Lloyd, Ralph Macchio, Dina Merrill, Lou Diamond Phillips, Mercedes Ruehl, Meryl Streep and Loretta Swit in a variety of productions, readings and workshops in theaters throughout the country.

He has served as Artistic Director for the Chelsea Theatre Center, the Cincinnati Playhouse-in-the-Park and the Pirate Playhouse on Sanibel Island. Mr. Kalfin attended Alfred University and has his M.F.A. degree is in Directing from the Yale School of Drama. He has served on the Boards of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers and Theater Communications Group.

Tammy L. Hall (musical director) began playing the piano at age four, in Dallas, where she was raised by two grandmothers, a grandfather and numerous aunts and uncles. Her earliest memories of the piano were of climbing onto the piano bench and pick out the notes to tunes she heard either on the radio, record player or something the choir sang at church. Later, Tammy became the pianist not just for the Junior Choir at her home church but also the pianist and organist for her godfather's church in Terrell, TX, some 40 miles away

Tammy's two grandmothers pooled their resources to make sure she had access to private lessons from age 8 to 18. Tammy participated in juried recitals, resulting in her winning several awards and honorable recognition in regional and national recitals and competitions. Because of her talent and impeccable academic record, Tammy was accepted to the Hockaday School, where she attended on an academic and musical scholarship, which also led to her attending the prestigious and progressive Mills College in Oakland. Tammy's grandfather was one of the first Black projectionists in the country and regularly showed films in his home, public schools and churches for the community. These films along with the music she heard on the radio, at church, and the R & B, soul and pop records of the time all influenced Tammy's playing.

Tammy has with worked award-winning cabaret singer and actress, Connie Champagne, the Supreme's Mary Wilson, chanteuse and actress Debbie de Coudreaux, The Montclair Women's Big Band, Houston Person, the late David 'Fathead Newman', jazz violinist Jeremy Cohen, vocalists Kim Nalley, Denise Perrier, Pamela Rose, Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir, Holly Near, Melba Moore, Miki Howard, Darlene Love, Veronica Klaus, , Kenny Washington, the late Etta Jones and many other artists.

Tammy's continued involvement with her musical and cultural community include working as an instructor (faculty)/mentor, with a number of non-profit arts organizations making music and theatre accessible to under-funded inner city children and organizations such as: Adventures In Music (AIM), under the auspices of the SF Symphony in collaboration with the SF Unified School District, The Handful Players Children's Theatre (SF public schools/Boys & Girls Club of SF), the Drew School (SF), Jazz Camp for Girls at the Jazz School (Berkeley), The Oakland Public Conservatory of Music, Alameda Unified School District, Stanford Jazz Workshop, Zellerbach Foundation, Yoshi's and the Jazz & Heritage Center of SF and most recently, Musically Minded Academy in Oakland and the Narada Michael Walden Foundation.


To post a comment, you must register and login.