Village Theatre Produces New Musical: Anne of Green Gables 11/11-1/2/2011
This holiday season, Village Theatre is set to produce an all-new musical production of Anne of Green Gables, based on Lucy Maud Montgomery's treasured, best-selling novel of the same title. This production will have one preview performance in Issaquah on Wednesday, November 10, 2010, and will officially open the following day, running November 11, 2010-January 2, 2011 in downtown Issaquah at the Francis J. Gaudette Theatre , and January 7-30, 2011 in downtown Everett, at the Everett Performing Arts Center.
Anne of Green Gables was first seen by Village Originals audiences as a reading in the 2009 Festival of New Musicals, then directed by Vanessa Miller. The show received wild acclaim from Festival goers-one person called the show "very emotional and compelling" while another stated that the show was "full of life, honesty, humor, perseverance, hope, joy, and family." Artistic director Steve Tomkins was so taken with the show-it wasn't long before it was announced that Anne of Green Gables would be part of the 2010-2011 Mainstage Season.
Miller and Tomkins have joined forces as co-directors, and over the course of the year following the season announcement, they've worked tirelessly with the show's authors, Janet Vogt Yates and Mark Friedman, to further develop Anne of Green Gables. "The authors, Vanessa, and I, are very excited about the changes that have been made to this piece since it was first seen by Village Originals audiences," Tomkins commented. "Janet and Mark are remarkable writers and it's wonderful to find that we are all on the same page when it comes to determining what it would take to make this an even more incredible show." Much like any new work at Village Theatre, many subtractions and additions have been made to the show throughout the rehearsal process, and changes will continue to unfold, potentially until opening night.
Village Theatre's production of this classic story will be unlike anything you have seen before. Co-choreographers Steve Tomkins-well-known for his ability to impeccably stage large dance numbers-and Kristin Culp (dance captain) have devised a staging that uses movement to not only entertain, but to translate the progression of time-and quite a bit of time in this piece. "When the students are young, the choreography is energetic and athletic-our goal is for it to look playful," explains Culp. "The younger dances reflect playful rivalries between boys and girls and establish individual characters. As the students age, their posture becomes better and the dances take on a polished look. Instead of rivalry, we establish camaraderie and see boys and girls dance together in a waltz."
Village Theatre's production of ANNE OF GREEN GABLES is co-directed by Steve Tomkins and Vanessa Miller, with co-choreography by Steve Tomkins and Kristin Culp (42nd Street, Meet Me in St. Louis), scenic design by Scott Fyfe (Chasing Nicolette, Stunt Girl); lighting design by Aaron Copp (42nd Street, Meet Me In St. Louis); costume design by Deane Middleton (Disney's Beauty and the Beast); and sound design by Gino Scarpino.
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