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Cast Announced For The 5th Avenue Theatre's Educational Touring Company's NORTHWEST BOOKSHELF

Northwest Bookshelf features musical adaptations of Alaska's Three Pigs, A Normal Turtle, Sonya's Chickens,  Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea, and Super Narwhal & Jelly Jolt.

Cast Announced For The 5th Avenue Theatre's Educational Touring Company's NORTHWEST BOOKSHELF

The 5th Avenue Theatre announced casting today for Northwest Bookshelf, this season's Educational Touring Company show, which will tour to schools and community centers across Washington state from February to May 2023.

Northwest Bookshelf will take students on a musical journey where they explore the world from new points of view and discover the ripe history and cultural diversity of the Pacific Northwest. This season's touring company has an ensemble cast, featuring Keoni Dilay, Ays Garcia, Keola Kapulani Holt, Kawika Huston, and swing Madison Willis, and is directed by Jimmy Shields with music direction by Claire Marx.


Since 1994, The 5th's Educational Touring Company (previously known as Adventure Musical Theatre) has brought the wonder and joy of live musical theater to students and community members throughout Washington state and the greater Pacific Northwest region. These touring musicals engage students through storytelling, song, and dance. The piece is a compilation of stories, written by Pacific Northwest authors, and adapted into original works created by local Pacific Northwest composers and playwrights , specifically designed to incorporate standards-based educational content. Supplementary, standards-based curriculum resources and in-school workshops will also be available, along with digital presentation options.

Northwest Bookshelf is available to tour in schools, community centers, and more, and is recommended for kindergarten to 5th grade. Touring begins February 27, 2023 and concludes May 12, 2023. Visit https://cloud.broadwayworld.com/rec/ticketclick.cfm?fromlink=2213148®id=17&articlelink=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.5thavenue.org?utm_source=BWW2022&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=article&utm_content=bottombuybutton1/education/schools/educational-touring-company/ to fill out an interest form and book a show today.


In the musical review Northwest Bookshelf, four children visit their school library searching for the perfect book to read. What they discover are shelves filled with books written by authors from the Pacific Northwest. With witty lyrics and enchanting music, each story comes to life in delightfully entertaining musicals.


The 2022/23 Northwest Bookshelf includes musical theater adaptations of Alaska's Three Pigs by Arlene Laverde, A Normal Turtle by Doug Reynolds, Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea and Super Narwhal & Jelly Jolt by Ben Clanton, and Sonya's Chickens by Phoebe Wahl. Christopher Guilmet is the bookwriter and composer for Alaska's Three Pigs, Rheanna Atendido is the composer for Sonya's Chickens, Leslie Wisdom is the bookwriter for Sonya's Chickens, Justin Huertas is the bookwriter and composer for Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea and Super Narwhal & Jelly Jolt, and Orlando G. Morales is the bookwriter and composer for A Normal Turtle. The original song "Book Report" was written by Richard Gray. Annastasia Workman is the score arranger for the 2022/23 show, Maggie Lee is the book arranger for the 2022/23 show, and Steven Tran is the score arranger for the 2018/19 script.


About the Cast

Keoni Dilay is a Seattle-based performer, teacher, and choreographer. He was most recently seen in Village Theatre's Mamma Mia! His choreography credits include Matilda Jr. and The Lightning Thief at Village Theatre KIDSTAGE. As a teacher, Dilay practices prioritizing and advocating for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ stories and voices.



Ays Garcia (she/her) started her career as the understudy for Woman 1 in Songs for a New World at Village Theatre! You may have most recently seen her as Cinderella in Cinderella, or in Mamma Mia!, also at Village Theatre.



Keola Kapulani Holt (they/them) is a Seattle area dancer and performer. They were most recently seen on the Village Theatre stage in the company of Cinderella. Keola is living out their second grade self's dreams by joining The 5th's Educational Touring Company.



Kawika Huston (he/him) makes his 5th Avenue Theatre debut with Northwest Bookshelf. Recent productions: Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella at Village Theatre; Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella at Tacoma Musical Playhouse; and 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at Twelfth Night Productions.



Madison Willis (Swing) (they/she) has previously been seen at The 5th (The Wiz), Village Theatre, TMP, and Benaroya Hall (Rise Up Concert band). Willis thanks you for supporting live theater.


About the Director

Jimmy Shields (he/him) is a local performer, director, and choreographer who is passionate about storytelling. Shields is from Spanaway, WA and began working professionally as a choreographer at the age of 18, which eventually led him to the path of directing. As a director, his most recent credits include: You're a Good Man Charlie Brown (Village Theatre), In The Heights (Tacoma Musical Playhouse), Lady Day (Harlequin Production), and A Night With the Russells: The Legacy of Us (Taproot Theatre).


About the Music Director

Claire Marx (she/her) is a Seattle-based actor, music director, and teaching artist. Her most recent musician credits include Music Supervisor for Always... Patsy Cline at CenterRep in California, and Associate Music Director for Cinderella (Village Theatre). She also music-directed Justin Huertas' original musical, The Last World Octopus Wrestling Champion, at ArtsWest, and has conducted for The 5th Avenue Theatre, Taproot Theatre, Village KIDSTAGE, and Cornish College of the Arts. Recent acting credits include Hairspray (Village Theatre); The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Seattle Children's Theatre); Black Coffee and The Bishop's Wife (Taproot Theatre); The Odyssey educational tour (Book-It Repertory Theatre); Romeo and Juliet (Seattle Shakespeare Co.); and a handful of new musical workshops at the Seattle Rep. She is on faculty at Cornish College, a teaching artist with Village Theatre KIDSTAGE, and runs a private music studio.



The 5th Avenue Theatre is one of America's leading musical theater companies. We enrich the community we love with the art form we love-giving the Pacific Northwest a front-row seat to original powerhouse productions that go on to light up marquees and audiences all the way to Broadway. From the page to the stage, we bring passion and epic scale to every musical we create. With big talent. And bigger-than-life productions. As a nonprofit theater company and our region's largest performing arts employer, we spread the joy of great musicals with people of all ages across our region and state. Each year, we reach 75,000 young people through our nationally acclaimed education programs. Programs designed to develop new musicals ensure that the next generation of great musicals will be there to tell the stories that captivate tomorrow's audiences. On the national stage, we are a leading voice for the power of this art form to lift the human spirit.



For more information about The 5th Avenue Theatre, its season and its programs, please visit www.5thavenue.org.



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