June 7th, 2016
Dallas, TX (June 3, 2016) – The quintessential backstage musical comedy classic 42nd STREET will celebrate a 2 week engagement at the Music Hall at Fair Park with a sparkling new production, June 28 – July 10 presented by Dallas Summer Musicals. This high-octane tour will then head to Fort Worth, where it will play at Bass Performance Hall July 12-17, presented by Performing Arts Fort Worth. 42nd STREET will be directed by co-author Mark Bramble and choreographed by Randy Skinner, the team who staged the 2001 Tony Award® winning Best Revival.
42nd STREET is the song and dance fable of Broadway, with an American Dream story and some of the greatest songs ever written, including “We’re In The Money,” “Lullaby of Broadway,” “Shuffle Off To Buffalo,” “Dames,” “I Only Have Eyes For You” and of course “42nd Street.”
With book by Michael Stewart and Mark Bramble, music by Harry Warren and lyrics by Al Dubin, 42nd STREET is based on a novel by Bradford Ropes and Busby Berkeley’s 1933 movie and tells the story of a starry-eyed young dancer named Peggy Sawyer who leaves her Allentown home and comes to New York to audition for the new Broadway musical Pretty Lady. When the leading lady breaks her ankle, Peggy takes over and becomes a star.
The original production of 42nd STREET was produced in 1980 on Broadway by David Merrick and featured direction and dances by Gower Champion. It played on Broadway for 3,486 performances, winning 1981 Tony Awards® for Best Musical and Best Choreography. The Broadway revival, which opened in 2001, played for 1,524 performances and earned two Tony Awards® including Best Revival of a Musical.
Mark Bramble (Director/Co-Author) began his theatrical career working for legendary producer David Merrick on many Broadway productions. He directed the 2001 Tony Award® winning Best Revival of 42nd STREET on Broadway for which he received a Tony Award® nomination, and has staged productions of the show in London, Sydney, Tokyo, Berlin, Amsterdam, Shanghai, and Vienna. Randy Skinner (Choreographer) choreographed the 2001 Tony Award® winning Best Revival of 42nd STREET on Broadway for which he received a Tony Award® nomination. He also received Tony Award® nominations for his choreography of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas and Ain’t Broadway Grand.
The design team includes scenic design by Tony Award® winner Beowulf Boritt (Act One, The Scottsboro Boys, Annie), costume design by Tony Award® winner Roger Kirk (The King and I, 42nd Street, Jesus Christ Superstar), lighting design by Tony Award® winner Ken Billington (Chicago, Annie, White Christmas) and sound design by Peter Fitzgerald (Movin’ Out, Will Rogers Follies, 42nd Street). Musical supervision is by Todd Ellison (American in Paris, La Cage Aux Folles, 42nd Street). Casting is by Joy Dewing CSA, Joy Dewing Casting (Annie, Wonderland, 42nd Street). The tour is produced by TROIKA Entertainment, LLC.
The national tour will star Matthew J. Taylor as notorious director Julian Marsh, Kaitlin Lawrence as Broadway leading lady Dorothy Brock and introduces Caitlin Ehlinger as newcomer Peggy Sawyer. Also featured in the production are Britte Steele (Maggie Jones), Steven Bidwell (Bert Barry), Mark Fishback (Abner Dillon), DJ Canaday (Pat Denning), Blake Stadnik (Billy Lawlor), Natalia Lepore Hagan (Annie), Carlos Morales (Mac/Doc/Thug), Lamont Brown (Andy Lee), Rob Ouellette (Oscar), Vanessa Mitchell (Lorraine), Dallas/Ft. Worth native Sarah Fagan (Diane) and Mallory Nolting (Phyllis).
The ensemble will feature Matthew Alexander, Emily Blake Anderson, Brittany Bigelow, Allison Blanchard, Molly Jean Blodgett, Stephanie Brooks, Taylore Burke, Mitchell Canfield, Joel Chambers, Kahlia Davis, Tricia DeSario, Lucia Foster, Kelly Gleason, Patrick Heffernan, Tommy Joscelyn, Brady Miller, Mandy Modic, Georgina Moore, Courtney Moran, Jocelyn Moss, Alicia Newcom, Tanner Outly and Andrew Winans.
In an initiative to elevate the arts, Dallas Summer Musicals in conjunction with Broadway World DFW and WFAA Channel 8 have partnered up and developed a fun summer series of walk-on roles to give audiences an inside look at the life of an actor. Auditions will be announced soon and a lucky winner will be transformed into one of the kids in the chorus and give viewers a behind the scenes look as they becomes part of cast in 42nd STREET.
Single tickets for 42nd STREET, from $25-$106 (pricing subject to change), are now on sale at www.DallasSummerMusicals.org, by phone at 1.800.514.ETIX (3849) and at The Box Office, 5959 Royal Lane, Suite 542 in Dallas, TX.
Groups of 10 or more receive a 15% discount, priority seating, and many more benefits. Please call 214.426.4768 or email Groups@DallasSummerMusicals.org.
Single tickets for 42nd STREET’s Fort Worth engagement, from $44-$115, are now on sale. To charge tickets by phone, call 817.212.4280 in Fort Worth; 1.877.212.4280 (toll free) outside Fort Worth; or order online at www.basshall.com. Tickets are also available at the Bass Performance Hall ticket office at 525 Commerce Street. For group sales, call 817-212-4248.
DSM’s highly awaited 2016–17 Season Announcement ‘Broadways Most Wanted’ is set to be revealed soon. A season teaser campaign is now online and throughout DSM’s social media platforms!
The 2015-2016 Broadway at the Bass season continues with Rodgers & Hammerstein’s THE SOUND OF MUSIC, August 17-21; and the phenomenal new production of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, October 20-30.
May 6th, 2016
Dallas Summer Musicals, in conjunction with Phoenix Entertainment, Broadway World DFW and WFAA Chanel 8, is searching for (a) young male actor(s) to portray the role of “Young Coalhouse” in the National Tour of Ragtime at the Music Hall at Fair Park for its Dallas run May 24 – June 5.
SEEKING: “Young Coalhouse”
REQUIREMENTS: Young Coalhouse is a young African American boy, ideally around 5 or 6 years old, between 3’-6” – 4’-0” tall, and 40 to 50 pounds. Young Coalhouse should have an “innocent” and “pure” quality about him. In role, Young Coalhouse will be picked up by an adult cast member, sit on a cast member’s lap and pretend to play piano. Young Coalhouse will also skip in a circle holding hands with other young actors. Young actor must be able to attend rehearsal, wardrobe fittings and sound check on Tuesday, May 24. Young actor will need a chaperone over 18 years of age to accompany him at all times. Must be non-union actor. This is a volunteer position only, young actor will not be compensated.
Finalist(s) will not only have the opportunity to be a part of the cast of a touring Broadway production as they step on the Music Hall stage known to many stars, but they will also receive complimentary tickets for family members to attend opening night and the performances in which the finalist is scheduled to appear.
WHAT TO SUBMIT: Young actor must submit a full length front and full length side photo, in addition to a headshot, as well as an audition registration form. Headshot does not have to be professional- cell phone photos are acceptable. All will be submitted via the online registration form (link below).
WHAT TO PREPARE: Please submit your photos, headshot, and registration through the link below. Deadline for submissions will be Friday, May 13. Finalist(s) will be notified on Monday, May 16.
April 18th, 2016
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A day-of-performance lottery for a limited number of orchestra seats will be held for WICKED, which is returning to to the Music Hall at Fair Park with performances from April 20 – May 22 presented by Dallas Summer Musicals. Two and one-half hours prior to each performance, people who present themselves at the Music Hall box office will have their names placed in a lottery drum; thirty minutes later, names will be drawn for a limited number of orchestra seats at $25 each, CASH ONLY. This lottery is available only in-person at the box office, with a limit of two tickets per person. Lottery participants must have a valid photo ID when submitting their entry form and, if chosen, when purchasing tickets.
The surprising tale of an unlikely friendship between two women in the Land of Oz, WICKED tells the untold story of the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good, long before Dorothy drops in. Elphaba, born with emerald-green skin, is smart, fiery and misunderstood. Glinda is beautiful, ambitious and very popular. The remarkable odyssey of how these unexpected friends changed each others lives for good has made WICKED one of the world’s most popular musicals.
Based on the best-selling 1995 novel by Gregory Maguire, WICKED is the winner of over 100 international major awards, including a Grammy® and three Tony® Awards.
With music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz (Pippin, Godspell, Academy Award®-winner for Pocahontas and The Prince of Egypt) and book by Winnie Holzman (“My So Called Life,” “Once And Again” and “thirtysomething”), WICKED is directed by two-time Tony® Award winner Joe Mantello (Take Me Out, Love! Valour! Compassion!, The Vagina Monologues) and features musical staging by Tony® Award winner Wayne Cilento (Aida, The Who’s Tommy, How To Succeed…).
WICKED has been declared “A Cultural Phenomenon” by Variety and “The Best Musical of the Decade” by Entertainment Weekly. WICKED has been performed in over 100 cities in 14 countries around the world (U.S., Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Japan, Germany, Holland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, The Philippines, Mexico and Brazil) and has thus far been translated into six languages: Japanese, German, Dutch, Spanish, Korean and Portuguese.
WICKED begins performances April 20 – May 22. Single tickets for WICKED, from $40-$179 (pricing subject to change), are now on sale at DallasSummerMusicals.org, by phone at 1.800.514.ETIX (3849) and at The Box Office, 5959 Royal Lane, Suite 542 in Dallas, TX. Great seats are still available for weeknight performances. For best availability please contact our ticketing agents by phone at 1.800.514.ETIX (3849).
Groups of 15 or more receive a 10% discount (on weekday evening performances and Sunday nights as well as Thursday, April 21st matinee), VIP handling, and many more benefits. Please call 214.426.GROUP (4768) or email Groups@DallasSummerMusicals.org.
About Dallas Summer Musicals:
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April 15th, 2016
DSM High School Musical Theatre Awards started in 2012, just as I was wrapping up my first year of college. Over the next couple years, I heard it mentioned as my former high school and high school friends were nominated for different awards, not knowing that I would end up as an intern for DSM. Over the past few months I have had the unique experience to look behind the scenes as this event was carefully planned.
This past Tuesday the auditions for the Best Leading Actor and Best Leading Actress were held at the Karaynis Rehearsal Production Center, where the Dallas Opera rehearses. I got to there to help with live streaming the event (for parents, family, and friends who were not able to be in the room where it happened). As soon as the students stepped in the room, you could feel their excitement and nerves as they performed the medleys for the Best Actor and Best Actress categories. It’s been a while since I have been to a high school production, and I had forgotten how immensely talented some of those students are. The actors and actresses in that room were the best of these students! After the medleys, there was a brief intermission while the nominees went to change for their individual performances. Their individual performance had to be a song that contrasted with the one they sang in the medley. As well done as the medley was, this was my favorite part of the auditions. What song they choose for themselves really says a lot about the person, and it was fun to see their versatility! (Also, I love performances like this, because I keep a running list of new music I need to listen to and shows I need to see!) The videos for the live stream currently have over 13,000 views and are still up on DSM’s Facebook page, so go check out these talented performers!
I came prepared for the long and busy day on Thursday with excessive amounts of coffee. I knew that everyone was well prepared for the event, but there was still so much to do and so much happening around the Music Hall at Fair Park!! All day, there were rehearsals going on onstage, special DSM HSMTA T-shirts were being sold in the lobby, and students were arriving from schools as far away as Abilene! The opening number, featuring the nominees for Best Lead Actor and Actress, Best Supporting Actor and Actress, and Best Featured Actor and Actress, was rehearsed in the morning. Students and teachers got a break, when lunch was kindly provided by In-n-Out! Throughout the afternoon the schools nominated for Best Musical were given a chance to perform their number on stage during the dress rehearsal while fellow nominees cheered them on from the audience.
However, the real fun started later: in the Music Hall driveway was a red carpet, surrounded by screaming fans, family and friends. At the end of the red carpet was a news crew from WFAA doing a live-stream of the event for their website, and paparazzi waiting to ambush the nominees and their dates at the step-and-repeat. As the Toyotas rolled into the driveway and nominees stepped out, the noise level noticeably increased, as people got more and more excited about seeing their favorite performers. The nominees walked down the red carpet, occasionally stopping for pictures from their fans/parents and were interviewed by WFAA before entering the Music Hall!
Inside the Music Hall, it was organized chaos! High schoolers, parents, and teachers were roaming about getting pictures to make sure they remember every second of this night! Throughout the Music Hall, nominees were being pulled aside to be interviewed for podcasts, or by the DSM Opening Night Video team! In the Music Hall restaurant, there was a V.I.P. reception for the wonderful donors who made this night possible!
As 7:00 got closer, I went backstage to assume my position at the social media table, where Amanda had already started live tweeting the whole event. The energy was palpable, as the opening number participants prepared themselves for their Jersey Boys medley and emcee Ron Corning got ready to take the stage. The whole show was a blur of activity, as performers rushed on and off stage, announcers were ushered in and out of the wings, and winners were announced! Through each reading of the nominees, cheers were heard from the audience as their school was called. The excitement grew, as the big awards of Best Lead Actor, Best Lead Actress, and Best Musical grew closer! The night ended with the award for Best Musical being presented by Michael Jenkins, DSM President and Managing Director, to Waxahachie High School for Spamalot, followed by two students from each of the 70 schools that participated in this year’s High School Musical Theatre Awards singing “Stronger” from Finding Neverland.
This is a one of a kind experience for these high schoolers. Theatre is a naturally competitive world, and giving the students a chance to compete at a higher level for something they love, makes them more motivated to achieve their dreams. DSM has created an environment that shows them that their dreams of Broadway can happen, and it gives them stepping stones (and even scholarships) to make that happen. The Best Lead Actor, John Fredrickson, and Best Lead Actress, Kaiden Maines, will have a once in a lifetime opportunity to go to New York City over the summer to participate in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards. While they’re there, they will meet agents, actors, and other industry professionals who will teach and encourage them to continue following their dreams!
My favorite part of this whole week was not the music being performed, the excitement in the air at the red carpet, or even the confetti at the end of the show. I loved getting to see how these nominees have bonded with each other throughout this whole process. I noticed it at the auditions on Tuesday, how encouraging they were to each other, and even more so at the show itself. Being in such a competitive environment, these high school students were so genuine about their excitement for friends who won awards. This attitude towards others is so important, so shout out to the teachers and parents and other influential people in these students lives. Last night was a win for everyone involved!
April 9th, 2016
(Dallas, TX) Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. (DSM) in conjunction with the Callier Center for Communication Disorders and UTD, sponsored just over 60 hearing impaired students and their families to experience DSM’s newest advances in technology, Hear Us Now!® , DSM’s trademarked state-of-the art sound system, during Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID recently.
Patrons attending the Music Hall at Fair Park are impacted by these dramatic advancements in hearing assistance to live theater which features a vibrant new clarity in theater sound. This is quite evident to everyone, benefiting those with hearing loss and those who are not hearing impaired.
Under the direction of Dallas Summer Musicals, the Music Hall at Fair Park has undergone a major transition to significantly improve patrons’ listening experience including substantial advancements in DSM hearing assist connectivity options and sound quality. Close collaboration with nationally recognized experts including UTD’s Callier Center for Communication Disorders, Purdue University and Idibri Consulting have been key to the evolving program.
Enhanced listening opportunities are delivered to patrons by a variety of methods ranging from DSM enhanced headsets to technology compatible with T-coil, FM receiver (Phonak channel 1 or equivalent), or selected streamers. HEAR US NOW!® is so unique that a trademark has been issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
“Over the past few years we have dramatically improved the sound and acoustics hearing system for everyone, not just the hard of hearing,” said Michael A. Jenkins, President and Managing Director, DSM.
Barry Epstein, Hear Us Now!® program director and a member of DSM’s executive committee, is also a distinguished alumnus from Purdue University and winner of the university’s Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineer Award. He said, “Additional improvements for the hearing assist systems have included syllable by syllable volume adjustment, enhancing the balance between music components and voice and we have added electronics to compensate for the building acoustics effect on hearing assist users. These are concepts not consistently used. We have done tremendous research to see what the advancements are that we can provide our hearing assist users. We have done them all.”
DSM sound system technology has been updated, including new speaker technology especially suited to enhancing vocal clarity and enabling patrons to feel sonically closer to the stage.
System interconnects marries the best of the traveling show’s sound systems to DSM’s, bringing the best of both worlds – DSM theater improvements coupled to the director’s music/dialog mix as originally intended and benefit of perhaps 50 or more wireless microphones worn by the cast and even sewn into their costumes.
Mark Rivet, Head Sound, Elf Touring Company, said, “Acoustically, the Music Hall at Fair Park ranks among the very best theaters in the U.S. for live Broadway shows!”
DSM has better headsets especially suited for these new features. The headsets are high powered enough they could be used in the place of a hearing aid.
After the show, the children were enthusiastic about their hearing experience, some even commenting they had never heard a musical completely through before and, this time, they were able to hear all of the speaking parts, as well as the singing. Some parents expressed surprise, saying they had never known their child couldn’t hear everything during a show and were full of smiles as they described their children almost dancing in the aisle to the music and their favorite songs.
The parents agreed: They will return to the shows at the Music Hall at Fair Park for sure and they are so thankful Dallas Summer Musicals has made the commitment to not only the hearing impaired, but everyone, to continue to develop Hear Us Now!® saying, “It’s fun to come to the musicals again!”
“The sound now at the DSM Musicals is amazing. I look forward to being a season ticket holder and coming to all the musicals!” – Nancy W. Marcus (Dirty Dancing)
“Dallas Summer Musicals hearing assist sound is by far the clearest I have heard. DSM’s Hear Us Now!® ensures every step in the sound process is attended to, and the results are spectacular.” – Professor Rick Thomas, Purdue University and a Fellow of the United States Institute of Theater Technology.
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February 5th, 2016
THE POWER OF MUSIC
“The lyric theatre felt like the perfect vehicle to tell the story of Robert and Francesca.”
—Jason Robert Brown, Composer, The Bridges of Madison County
I had been writing comedies for several years, and the longer lines of romance and yearning and fantasy had been building up, swirling around my head unchanneled, imprecise. When Marsha and I did The Trumpet of the Swan, big music started to leak out, expansive music, something beautiful. I was afraid of turning off the tap, so I told Marsha we should look for a project that would be serious and intense and overflowing with unrestrained passion, which is not the kind of thing I say very often. I said I was ready to write La Traviata. We set out to find a story.
The story found us. Robert James Waller’s agent approached Marsha to adapt The Bridges of Madison County, and she immediately knew this would be our project. I had never read the novel but I regarded it warily — I was a 22-year-old single guy living in Manhattan when it first came out, and I was not, to put it mildly, the target audience — but Marsha saw in it a deeper resonance and a fiercer moral energy than I would have perceived, and she sold me on the struggles of these two broken characters who each see a piece of themselves trapped inside the other. I suggested we conceive it as an octet, a piece for eight lonely voices on a large stage.
The piano reflects my energy back at me, neurotic and complicated — I know the instrument so well by now that I sometimes have to wrestle with it to make it surprise me, and I knew that the skittery and dense music that the piano and I traditionally made together wasn’t the right sound for this piece. I’d played guitar the way most guys who hang around rock bands play it — I knew a couple of chords and I could keep time relatively well
— but I felt the guitar was my way in to the world of the Johnson family in Winterset, IA in 1965, so I bought a black Takamine and hoped for the best.
From the beginning, the music flooded out of me, music that I didn’t entirely recognize as my own but that was clearly speaking some revelation I had yet to confront in myself. I felt myself sometimes butting up against the corny, the cheesy, the sentimental, but I decided in those moments to push harder through it, not to be cynical about love or family but to sing about them with ecstatic truth.
We can love in many different ways, and we can love different things simultaneously. It is hard — it is insane — to place one love above another. With every show I’ve written, I begin thinking it’s just a job,
the story doesn’t have anything to do with me, and I end by realizing I have exposed some deep scary part of myself. I am unspeakably grateful to my beautiful family for holding our lives together while this score got pushed out into the world — I spent four years learning about Robert and Francesca and figuring out how and why they made the choices they did, and this show celebrates, in many ways, the staggeringly high price and the even greater value of the commitments and the choices we make to build a home.
Jason Robert Brown
March 28, 2014 New York, NY
WHAT IS IT ABOUT MUSIC THAT CAPTURES OUR HEARTS AND IMAGINATIONS?
Maybe we are born to respond to music. Sound is one of the first senses we develop in the womb. Before we see, taste or touch — we hear. The rhythm of our mother’s heartsbeat
is our first connection to another person and the outside world. Music is an intimate act. The sound of a melody enters the ear and moves the ear drum. The texture and tone of the music is literally touching you.
Music can capture the depth, sweep and complexity of pure feelings.
It goes beyond language. It needs no translation. Music speaks the unspeakable, voicing the richness
of the heart when words fall flat. Like love — how do you describe the feeling of love? The word itself fails to convey the intricacies, the fear, elation, longing, befuddlement, tenderness, sadness, joy.
Eight words to get somewhat of an approximation of what it is to be in love.
Maybe being in love is like a musical? That moment when language is not enough. When the emotion has to be expressed and it is too grand for the rigidity of syntax and grammar. That’s when the music begins to swell and the chorus hums. The hero or heroine opens their mouth and emotions float on melodies that we understand instantly, viscerally. Before our brains decipher the words, we know that Francesca is in love with Robert and we know from the tug the minor chords give our hearts that this love will be bittersweet. A song, a mere string of notes captures it all. Straight from our ears to our hearts and we understand what love is.
THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW!
-Click here for tickets will be this link: http://www.etix.com/ticket/online/eventSearch.jsp?event_id=1002163&partner_id=858&cobrand=dallassummermusicals
-Click here for details/sneak peek is: http://www.dallassummermusicals.org/shows_bridges.shtm
February 3rd, 2016
CONVERSATION WITH PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING WRITER MARSHA NORMAN by Journalist/Teaching Artist Marcos Nájera
Marcos: Thank you for taking the time to talk with us Marsha. We want to give people a chance to learn a little about this story and you —a member of the creative team — before they experience The Bridges of Madison County.
Marsha: Sounds good. This isn’t simply the story of Francesca and Robert. This is the big difference [between our musical] and the book and the movie. This is the story of the town. This is the story of the family. And the story of this couple in the course of a family, in the course of a town. It’s more like Our Town than the original material is. We really zoomed back so we can see the family life and the town life and we can learn Francesca’s history in Italy.
We zoomed back and we panned around. I invented the neighbors. We invented the town. We invented the people who would really care about Francesca and who would be aware, in this small town, that she was going through something.
That is wonderful. You mentioned Our Town by playwright Thornton Wilder. How did Our Town inspire your take on The Bridges of Madison County?
I love Our Town. I don’t even know how many times I’ve seen it. I think it’s one of the great, inspiring pieces of American literature. It’s clear in the cemetery scene of Our Town how much they’ve all taken care of and watched out for each other.
I also know that in a small town — as Our Town makes clear —
a small town, like where Francesca and Robert are, everybody knows what’s going on. So everybody knows that the kids and Bud are headed off for the State Fair. And everybody knows that Francesca is there by herself. And everybody knows that there is a photographer, in town taking pictures. And everybody knows that she took him over to the bridge. Everybody knows everything. What I really wanted to do was to make it clear that Francesca makes her decision in the context of her family and her town and her history.
Jason [Robert Brown, the composer] and I were eager to hop from Iowa all the way back to Italy — to show what the end of the war was really like in Naples and what she experienced as a girl. And why she is here [in the United States] and what kind of things she’s never really come to terms with as a human being. Because she’s spent her time adjusting so quickly.
She came here, she was newly married, she didn’t speak much English. She learned English, she learned to farm, and she learned to be a wife, to be a mom, and presto! Somebody shows up at
the door and she realizes she does feel like an outsider. And now, she does need to think about how she has spent her life and she does need to feel alive again as she did as a girl. What Robert does is cause her to take a deep breath in and look around; to connect with herself and to connect to him, but mainly herself.
It’s this moment that people have when they think, “What about that other path? What about that love that I had to turn away from? What about that? What would have happened if I married that guy who went to the University of New Mexico?
What would have happened?
We can’t help but wonder those things, right? The people that I see crying the hardest in the audience are the people that have obviously left great loves behind. That’s something a lot of people respond to — including a lot people on the creative team. Everybody, I think! (Laughing)
So yes, we have these questions. We all deal with this thing. We can’t have absolutely everything that we want to have in life. Because some of these things conflict.
Robert’s description of [what his and Francesca’s] life would be is so seductive and wondrous. Whether she would actually be happy with him or not, it doesn’t even matter. She makes the decision to honor her responsibilities and she knows that if she leaves, her son is going to be in trouble. [Her daughter] Carolyn is going to be fine. But [her son] Michael? She still needs to stay to take care of Michael. To make sure Michael does okay. That’s why we see Michael’s graduation from medical school. She did have that effect. Michael was ready to bolt out of there and get in trouble with the law and his dad or whatever — and she saw that. She knew that he wasn’t going to be a farmer. She knows she has to stay.
We sometimes have to make those really hard choices between the things that we care about.
I wonder about the danger of the town watching all this happen. It seems like the stakes rise so much higher if everybody can see that she is talking to this stranger while Bud and the kids are away. Isn’t Francesca scared?
She is scared. The fact that we don’t do any of that —[Francesca] having a dangerous conversation with [the neighbor] Marge or Marge almost finds out [about the affair] — that seemed a little cheap to us in terms of the excess drama.
But yes, it’s on her mind. Especially when she goes into town to buy
a dress. Certainly, she knows that Marge knows. And there’s a whole conversation — unwritten and unspoken — that goes on between Marge and Francesca about what’s going on. That’s why Marge arrives at exactly at the right moment with the lasagna. Marge knows exactly what’s happened.
It’s almost as if Francesca’s all-knowing neighbor, Marge, is cheering her on!
She is. She certainly is not judging. The friendship with Marge is deep and powerful. For me, the most wondrous moment in the whole show is right there at the end when [Marge] leaves from Bud’s funeral and says, “See you tomorrow!” It’s like, “Things continue here and I’m going to see you tomorrow [Francesca]. You feel such a loss right now. You’ve lost both of these men now and here you sit. And I will see you in the morning.” (Laughing)
That’s the kind of thing, the comfort that women can provide to each other. I was very interested in writing that in the piece. It is Francesca’s story. But it is [also] a story of what women can do for each other.
That’s why I mentioned Our Town. Two generations ago, Thornton Wilder wrote about Grover’s Corner. Now, Jason and I are writing about Winterset, Iowa. It’s a continuing interest and dream that we all have of belonging to a place and belonging to a group of people and belonging in the family.
To me, one of the awful parts of the virtual world is that, okay, we have a virtual family. But is that really okay? Is that good? Is that enough? Or do you want to know enough people so that if you make a pie, like that one I made last night that’s that good, you can call other houses and get the whole pie eaten? This pie last night was so remarkable that I thought, “I do not need to let it sit around here in the house where just my daughter and I are. I need to call three people to have some!”
The pie should be enjoyed! Life should be enjoyed right? It makes me think about the scene in the Bridges movie where Meryl Streep is in the truck. And the camera focuses in as the muscles in her right hand tighten as she grips the handle and she’s about to open the door and go off to Robert. Do you think we live in a world now that is progressive enough for her husband Bud to just let her go?
to watch that
The piece brings up all this “what would happen,” that’s fun to suppose about. But for Francesca she’s got to make that decision in-that-moment. The truck moment [from the film] is so crucial that we worked really hard to find something that would give us a sense of the truck moment. That’s what we call “The Rewind.”
That’s where she appears to go to Robert. Suddenly, she turns around and stops and sees her family and knows what they would feel if she did that. And she walks back to them. And then time picks up again and she goes on into the Soda Shop.
In that moment that she chooses her family — it’s Robert’s world that falls apart. That’s our theatrical way to investigate the “what- would-happen-if-I-did-this?”What I was able to do was give voice, give character, give personality, give wishes to every single person in this family. I think [Francesca] does the right thing. I totally think she does the right thing. But man, do I understand the struggle. That sense of being alive put up against the sense of being connected in a family or being responsible. This passion of feeling alive is pretty powerful, but the sense of being useful and being loved beats it every time.
The book really tells the story from Robert’s point of view. Why did you decide to focus on Francesca’s point of view for this musical?
The Francescas of the world are the 70% of the people buying the tickets to the theater. So women should have a story where they’re the lead. I have a picture that’s on my wall. It was taken at Samuel French. Kelli O’Hara [who played Francesca on Broadway] is standing there with no make-up and she’s holding a piece of paper on which is written “I need stories by women on stage because my daughter will hear the echo of their voices.” It’s an extraordinary picture.
I’m the President of the Lily Awards, which is an organization that celebrates and honors the contributions of women in the theater and works for gender parity. Kelli received an award from us the year before last. I mean, she’s certainly played all the glorious [female leads on Broadway], but for [Bridges] to be the first time she has ever said words on stage that were written by a woman?
I was hearing this for the first time as she was saying this on the stage [at the Lily Awards]. And it was a staggering experience for me and I think for the audience. I suddenly felt the significance of my staying alive in order to write. And my activism and the importance of this mission of gender parity, so the voices of women can be heard and the stories of women can be told.
In regard to gender parity, if life worked the way the theater does, 4 out of every 5 things
you heard would be said by men. In working for gender parity we are working to hear all
the voices of the human chorus on the stage. All the voices. All the stories. In not hearing the voices of women, it’s almost as if theaters have chosen to only tell stories about things that happen in the daytime. It’s eliminating half of the experience of life on the stage.
We need to hear all the voices in the human chorus.
So yes, if an all-male team had written this —I’m sure it would have been the Robert story. I’m totally sure. And what is the Robert story? I came into town, I met this woman. We had a thing, I had a couple of thoughts of whether or not to haul her off in the truck with me and then I left. Got back to New York and saw the Hare Krishnas.So there’s not a musical in the Robert story. There’s only a musical in the Francesca story.
As in Oklahoma, so it is in Iowa. The loners have to go on their way. It’s true with musicals in general. I teach musical book-writing [at Juilliard]. This is one of the big rules. The loners go on their way. But people come to musicals to watch that glorious search for home in song. It’s like The Wizard of Oz, where does Dorothy end up? It’s the Francesca story, it’s the Tevye story, it is every musical there is.
[The playwright Jerome] “Jerry” Lawrence told me this: “All musicals are about the conflict between two worlds.” It’s Guys & Dolls, it’s West Side Story, it’s Oliver… you can go on down the list, The King & I. Two worlds. In this case, it’s the life of passion versus the life of family and community.
If you think about us as a country — there are things that we’ve lost. And yes, we mourn them. We had to give them up in order to go forward towards the other things we believe. This making of choices is something that people respond to and in this case they get to really watch a big one, a big choice and it’s kind of the most elemental one.
It’s a story about choice.
THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW!
February 2nd, 2016
When caught up in story, lost in drama, wiping tears of laughter
or sorrow from our eyes, we don’t normally think of the set and the lights as part of the journey. But they are. These design elements provide the context for the story — establishing the tone, mood and style of a show.
-Reflections from Two-Time Tony Award-winning lighting designer, DONALD HOLDER
How would you describe what a lighting designer
A lighting designer “reveals the world of the play or musical,” and is responsible for not only what the audience sees, but “how they see it.” Light provides the visual context for a theatrical event, or the lens through which a play is seen. It informs style, and has a clear subliminal effect on perception. Working with a strong understanding of the intentions of the director and his fellow collaborators, a lighting designer manipulates light to tell a particular story or to evoke a particular emotional response.
How does the lighting design help tell the story of
The Bridges of Madison County?
The story of The Bridges Of Madison County unfolds on
a relatively open space, in front of a vast expanse of Iowa sky, and takes place over the course of just a few days. Although much of the story is told in a linear fashion time- wise, there are several flashbacks that provide important context and deepen our connection with the characters. The passage of time is central to the telling of the story,
and the sky, as rendered through light is the principal device used to communicate this, constantly changing during the course of the evening.
We experience sunrise, sunset, dawn, twilight, moonlight, starlight. And the color of the sky and the direction of the sun or moon has a strong influence on all the other light that is introduced in the space. It’s a world filled with ever- changing natural light, ebbing and flowing to respond to the emotional temperature of a scene or song. During the flashbacks, the sky takes on a surreal quality with very rich and intense colors, thus providing an important clue to the audience that we have stepped back in time.
Theatre is a collaborative medium. How do you work with
the director and your fellow designers?
Because light can be so influential about how everything
is perceived, it’s very important that a lighting designer understands the intentions and objectives of the director and his design collaborators. Early conversations that get to the heart of the production and its overall vision are really crucial. And a great deal can be learned by studying the set design, as it will always provide a lot of information about how the show has been conceived and will be staged. Because lighting
and scenery share the same stage space, the two disciplines must work in close collaboration. In the case of Bridges, Michael, Mikiko (scenic and associate scenic designers) and I spent a great deal of time working out the proper spatial relationships between lighting positions and scenery to get the sky looking just right. We also collaborated on the layout and details of the star field you’ll see throughout the course of the evening, and the kinds of materials that were used to create the spectacular skyscapes that really are the visual centerpiece of the production.
Can you share something about the lighting design for
The Bridges of Madison County that an audience member could look for while watching the show? What is part of the design they will see that could only happen onstage rather than in the film or book?
In Act One, Robert and Francesca meet at dawn as he photographs the sunrise at the covered bridge. It’s a special moment in their relationship, I speculate it’s when they fell in love. As all of this unfolds, the sky takes on a brilliant surreal red, with a single onstage tree silhouetted by a bright golden sun. It’s a dramatic and poetically heightened moment that we see once again in Act Two. During the song “It All Fades Away,” as Robert considers his own passing, he remembers Francesca vividly and the sky returns to that same intense red and yellow at the musical and emotional zenith of this song. To me, it’s one of my favorite images in the entire production.
A lighting designer “reveals the world of the play or musical,” and is responsible for not only what the audience sees, but “HOW THEY SEE IT.”’ —Donald Holder, Lighting Designer, The Bridges of Madison County
THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW! Just click here to find your seats. For more details and a sneak peek for the show, click here.
-Click here for tickets will be this link: http://www.etix.com/ticket/online/eventSearch.jsp?event_id=1002163&partner_id=858&cobrand=dallassummermusicals
-Click here for details/sneak peek is: http://www.dallassummermusicals.org/shows_bridges.shtm
January 28th, 2016
THEY ARE IN THE TITLE of all three incarnations of the story. They are a character in their own right. A focal point and instigator of the action of the novel, film and musical. They are the real bridges of Madison County and they have a rich history.
In the mid-1880s as the population of the Midwest grew and demand for the goods rose, farmers needed a way to get their products to market. In response to this need, counties began to improve rural roads and install bridges. These bridges were most often built using timber. It was quickly realized that timber bridges would rapidly deteriorate if left exposed to the elements and it would be much cheaper to cover the bridges rather than repair them.
Madison County, Iowa, located southwest of Des Moines, once boasted 19 covered bridges. Only six remain today, five of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Five of the bridges: Roseman, Holliwell, Cedar, Imes-Cox and Hogback were built between 1870-1880 by Benton Jones.
The Cutler-Donahol was built by Eli-Cox in 1870.
The Roseman Bridge — featured in the love story – is also known as the “haunted bridge.” In 1892 two sheriff’s posses trapped a county jail escapee and it is rumored that the man rose up straight through the roof of the bridge, uttered a wild cry and disappeared. The escapee was never found.
The bridges became nationally known because of the success of Robert James Waller’s novel The Bridges of Madison County. The bridges reached super stardom after the release of the film, in 1995. And according to the website roadtrippers.com the bridges of Madison County are the number one make out spot in Iowa.
There will be photos of the bridges of Madison County on display at the Music Hall during the run of the show, so make sure you come see the show!!
THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW!
-Click here for tickets will be this link: http://www.etix.com/ticket/online/eventSearch.jsp?event_id=1002163&partner_id=858&cobrand=dallassummermusicals
-Click here for details/sneak peek is: http://www.dallassummermusicals.org/shows_bridges.shtm
January 26th, 2016
“As designers, it is our responsibility to search for those KEY VISUAL ELEMENTS that guide our journey through the story.”—Catherine Zuber, Costume Designer, The Bridges of Madison County.
THE OLD CLICHÉ — “First impressions are everything” — is true; especially on the stage. Another cliché that theatre keeps alive — “Clothes make the man.” The full quote reads “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” Thank you Mark Twain! In theatre, costume design is an indispensable tool that helps an audience navigate the world of the play.
Reflections from Six-Time Tony-Award Winning Costume Designer CATHERINE ZUBER
How would you describe what a costume designer actually does?
A costume designer creates the first impression the audience has regarding a character. They assist and collaborate with the actor and the director to bring to life the exterior definition of the character they are portraying.
How does the costume design help tell the story of The Bridges of Madison County? How do the costumes help the audience understand the people in the play?
In The Bridges of Madison County, the costumes strive to capture Iowa in the mid-60’s. Some of the characters would have dresses that would have been home-sewn, or from a mail-order catalogue, or a dry-goods shop in the local town. It is the summertime, so the clothing contributes to creating those wonderful sultry August days.
You said about the costumes in The Bridges of Madison County: “This isn’t the groovy side of the mid-‘60s. There is nothing urban about the clothes.” Can you talk about how the costumes help tell the time and place of the story?
When we go to the state fair, we see a world outside of Madison County. However, it still is not the urban mid 1960’s ‘mod’ drifting into ‘hippie’ aesthetic of a big city. I was hoping that the costumes convey a world that is a hard-working, rural environment. The characters have dignity and care about their appearance, but not at the price of comfort and practicality.
Theatre is a collaborative medium. How do you work with the director and your fellow designers? Can you give us a glimpse into that collaboration?
Our director gives us his priorities for the story-telling. He encourages us to visually assist his vision by illustrating the emotions the audience should take away from the experience. As designers, it is our responsibility to search for those key visual elements that guide our journey through the story.
Can you share something about the costumes for The Bridges of Madison County that an audience member could look for while watching the show? What is part of the design they will see that could only happen onstage rather than in the film or book?
Francesca starts out in our story wearing pretty but simple and practical shirt-waist house-dresses. As Robert awakens in her romantic feelings that she didn’t realize were still possible, we see her making a choice that is out of character for her. She purchases a shoulder-baring dress in a deep shade of pink. Her hair is worn down.
Regarding costume design, the progression that occurs in ‘When I’m Gone’ happens before our eyes, during the course of the song. This could happen in a film, but the theatricality of the amount of information that transforms us through 15 years of time in less than 5 minutes on stage is thrilling.
—Company, The Bridges of Madison County
THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals February 2-14, 2016 at Music Hall Fair Park. Tickets are ON SALE NOW! For more details and a sneak peek for the show, click here.
January 20th, 2016
Dallas, TX (January 20, 2016) – Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. (DSM), the largest producer of live theatrical entertainment in North Texas, has named Ted Munselle, a business executive and civic leader, Chairman of the DSM Board of Directors for 2016.
Munselle’s love for musical theatre started early and was solidified in 1978, when he married his wife, Gay, a Music Educator and Choir Director. Gay and Ted were DSM season ticket holders early in their marriage and he jumped at the chance to serve on DSM’s Board of Directors when the opportunity arose in 2008. Since joining DSM’s Board, Ted served as Vice President of Investments and Vice President of Development before being named Chair-Elect in 2015. In addition, he has served DSM as a member of the Audit and Finance Committees.
Ted is a Certified Public Accountant and has been Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Landmark Nurseries, Inc., a wholesale nursery company headquartered in Coppell, Texas, since 1998. Before joining Landmark, Ted spent over 10 years with two national CPA firms (Laventhol & Horwath and Grant Thornton, LLP), then spent 12 years as an Audit Partner in two Dallas, Texas based CPA firms. Ted serves on the Board of Directors as Chair of the Audit Committees of four publicly traded corporations, and is actively involved as an Elder at Highland Park Presbyterian Church.
Gay and Ted have a son, Chris, who lives in Plano with his wife Kristine, and their four children (Josiah, Layla, Judah and Ivy), and a daughter, Elyse, who lives in Austin.
DSM President and Managing Director Michael A. Jenkins said, “Ted Munselle brings DSM an outstanding track record of executive and business leadership as he takes the helm as Chairman of the Board of Dallas Summer Musicals for 2016. Combining an impressive record of 39 years of achievement in his profession with volunteer leadership in support of the arts, Ted has been a big supporter of DSM for many years. As a past member of the board, he has rapidly and actively engaged in advancing the transformation of DSM and we feel very lucky to welcome him as the new Chair.”
New DSM Board Chairman Munselle said, “I am honored and excited to be able to serve as DSM’s Chair during its 76th season. I have loved the organization for many years and I look forward to working with our incredible team of officers as we lead DSM forward into the future, not only presenting the Best of Broadway to the Dallas-Fort Worth area, but also providing educational opportunities to students with such programs as High School Musical Theatre Awards and Seats for Kids, to name a few. As a not-for-profit organization, we will continue to work together with our patrons, sponsors and volunteers, not to mention the City of Dallas and the community as a whole, to create a fun and welcoming experience each time we get together.”
Immediate Past Chairman of Dallas Summer Musicals is Dorsey L. Baskin, Managing Partner of Innovative Services Development at Grant Thornton LLP, with Randy Wright, Tax Partner at BDO USA LLP, serving as Chairman Elect. Ruth Altshuler holds the title of Honorary Chair, and Michael A. Jenkins is President and Managing Director of DSM.
In addition, other DSM Officers for 2016 include Vice President of Audit, Christopher McRorie; Vice Presidents of Community Relations, Nancy Natinsky; Vice President of Development, Jane Schoen; Vice President of Finance, Tom W. Watson; Vice Presidents of Marketing, Jennifer Altieri and Jay Fox; Vice President of Personnel & Compensation, Scott T. Collier; Vice President of Education and Children’s Committee, Downie Mathis; Secretary, Robert Witte; Treasurer, David Dienes; and Guild President, Juliann Krumbholz.
Members of the Executive Committee include: Ruth Altshuler; Ed Bratton; Brad E. Cheves; J. Diane Childress; O. Paul Corley, Jr.; John R. Clutts; Joshua N. Curlett; Barry Epstein; Patti Flowers; Stanley D. Gardner; Rick J.W. Graham; Gary Griffith; Charles L. Gummer; Sally Hoglund; Darrell E. Jordan; Dr. Sheffield Kadane; Juliann Krumbholz; Steven C. Metzger; Andrew N. Meyercord; Scott Night; Craig G. Ongley; Honorable James R. Pitts; Gail H. Plummer; Mark B. Plunkett; James W. Porter, Jr.; Holly Reeves; Richard L. Rogers; Kenneth D. Sandstad; Donald K. Spies; Michael C. Steindorf; Steven H. Stodghill; Paul A. Stotts; Steve B. Watson; Kit Williams; and Dr. Kimberly Yamanouchi.
Past Chairmen of the Board for DSM include: Dorsey L. Baskin; Ed Bratton; O. Paul Corley, Jr.; Stanley D. Gardner; Rick J.W. Graham; Gary Griffith; Charles L. Gummer; Darrell E. Jordan; Steven C. Metzger; James W. Porter, Jr.; Dick Quisenberry; Richard L. Rogers; Kenneth D. Sandstad; Donald K. Spies; Michael C. Steindorf; Paul A. Stotts; Steve B. Watson; and Kit Williams. Past Chairmen O. Paul Corley, Sr.; J. Frank Miller III; Douglas Perry; and Charles Pistor are deceased.
Dallas Summer Musicals’ highly anticipated 2015-2016 Season presented by Texas Instruments will continue with THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, February 2-14, 2016; followed by DSM’s production of Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID, March 11-27, 2016; WICKED, April 20 – May 22, 2016; RAGTIME, May 24 – June 5, 2016; BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, June 14-26, 2016; and closing the season will be 42ND STREET, June 28 – July 10, 2016. Dallas Summer Musicals Management Group, Inc. will also present the Broadway hit musical MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, February 27 & 28, 2016 for a limited engagement.
About Dallas Summer Musicals:
October 6th, 2015
Who can participate?
• Families, groups of friends, schools or choirs – all are welcome.
• Group size: minimum 3 per group, maximum 30 per group.
What are we looking for?
• A solid combination of quality and creativity.
• Get creative, have fun and show us why YOU deserve to win!
• Record a 1 minute video of your group singing any song from THE SOUND OF MUSIC.
• Upload the video to YouTube.
• Register your group + submit video link via the registration form by Wed. October 21st.
• Finalists will be selected and announced Friday, October 23rd.
• Winners will be voted on/selected by public. Voting time frame: Mon. 10/26 – Thu. 11/12.
• Winners will be announced Friday, November 13th.
• 1 Sound Of Music 50th Anniversary book for the group.
• Complimentary tickets for entire group, to THE SOUND OF MUSIC on Tuesday, Nov. 17th.
• (Pending show approval, the prize could also include a cast meet&greet or post-show backstage tour!)
THE SOUND OF MUSIC is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals November 3-22, 2015, at the Music Hall at Fair Park.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
August 26th, 2015
It’s time for you to vote!
This year, we want to honor a special, deserving person with 2015/2016 DSM Season Tickets! The nominations have been submitted and after A LOT of thought, we’ve announced our 5 DSM Hero finalists! Now it’s your turn to vote at this link for the person who you feel deserves 2015-16 season tickets to Dallas Summer Musicals the most. Thanks for your votes – voting ends Sunday! -DSM Amanda
Thanks for voting! We wish the nominated heroes good luck!
#DSMSeason #SeasonTicketContest #DSMHeroes
Vote Here: http://bit.ly/VoteDSMHero
August 20th, 2015
Dallas, TX (August 17, 2015) – Dallas Summer Musicals Academy of Performing Arts in partnership with WOW! Entertainment, Inc. are thrilled to hold a triple threat program for ages 10 and up at Central Christian Church September 12 – November 14, 2015 from 11 am – 5 pm with a cost of $529 or $429 for YMCA members; some Saturday calls starting at 9 am. This workshop will prepare all students for the world premiere of the first Jukebox Jr. Musical entitled DO YOU WANNA DANCE? at Uptown Theater Saturday, November 21 at 12:00 pm and 3:00 pm; auditions held the first day of class September 12.
With a script by Mark Brymer and John Jacobson, both authors will be working with students to ready the script in a 90’s themed style jukebox musical. Students have the opportunity to register for this triple threat workshop that emphasizes acting, singing and dancing for the professional stage. No theatrical experience is necessary to participate.
Students may enroll by mailing a completed enrollment form (attached separately) with payment to DSM Academy, P. O. Box 567671, Dallas, TX 75356, by fax at 972.408.4147, online at dsmschool.org (add $15 handling fee when enrolling through DSM), or in person at Park Cities YMCA. For payment plans, please contact Ty Lawrence at DSM Academy, 214.498.5434.
Musical Theatre – DO YOU WANNA DANCE? & Steven Kavner’s IMPROV FOR THE ACTOR
Please note that students should bring a non-refrigerated lunch, snack and capped drink. Students are not allowed to leave during class time without parent permission.
DO YOU WANNA DANCE? will feature such well known songs as “Dancing In The Streets”, “Neutron Dance”, “Bust A Move”, “Walking On Sunshine” and “Boogie Wonderland”. Featuring DSM Academy students from all over the Metroplex, the show will be directed by the Peabody Award winning producer, Steven Kavner.
In this musical romp, singing and dancing is what draws everyone to the town center of SnapHappy to meet Mayor Pete’s new wife, Mona Lightfoot. But after she literally pulls the plug on the May Day celebration, the politics of dancing start to take the Snap out of Happy. Delaney, Chad, Lucas, Emma, and all the SnapHappy kids are shocked when they hear that a new “Dance Tax” has been levied on anyone who dances in town.
While their ‘Boogie Down’ parents try to cope with the new tax, all the kids come together and eventually find a way around it. But who could have ever imagined that “I Can’t Dance” Mona would turn into a Dancing Machine. Now that’s AWESOME!
As DSM Academy of Performing Arts develops new initiatives with industry professionals across the Metroplex, it also expands the efforts of Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. of fostering future patrons for the arts.
Dallas Summer Musicals’ highly anticipated 2015-2016 season will kick off with the North Texas debut of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s THE SOUND OF MUSIC, November 3-22, 2015; followed by ELF The Musical, December 8-20, 2015; THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, February 2-14, 2016; DSM’s production of Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID, March 11-27, 2016; WICKED, April 20 – May 22, 2016; RAGTIME, May 24 – June 5, 2016; BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, June 14-26, 2016; and closing the season will be 42ND STREET, June 28 – July 10, 2016.
Dallas Summer Musicals’ seven-show season tickets, starting at $134, are now on sale online at DallasSummerMusicals.org, in person at The Box Office, 5959 Royal Lane, Suite 542 in Dallas or by phone at 214-346-3300. In addition, season ticket buyers have the option to add on WICKED, April 20 – May 22, 2016, to their season subscription for an 8-show package starting at $174.
Groups of 10 or more receive a 15% discount for all shows excluding WICKED where groups of 15 or more save on select performances. All groups receive priority seating and many more benefits. Please call 214-426-GROUP (4768) or email Groups@DallasSummerMusicals.org.
August 4th, 2015
Tapping of your toes in time to a powerful score.
The swell of your chest as your heart goes out to a protagonist in peril.
The collective laughs, cries, and sighs of the theatre audience as you share emotional lows and highs.
The ability of the musicals to engage patrons in awe-inspiring experiences and with each other is unequaled. For 75 years, the Music Hall at Fair Park has been the home of such memories for millions of North Texans. Countless studies highlight what any theatre lover already knows from experience to be true – arts exposure and involvement increases a person’s quality of life. And thanks to the big hearts and far sight of our donors, the Music Hall doors and the magic that lies beyond them are open to children who are more greatly impacted by the experience but less likely to have the opportunity without support.
For over a decade, DSM has partnered with Title I schools and social service agencies to bridge the arts access gap created by limited resources. Stage Right and Seats for Kids are two programs offered by DSM which are at the heart of our mission to open the theatre to all members of our community and support the increased engagement, creativity and academic involvement which early exposure to the arts fosters.
Seats for Kids has coordinated with hundreds of schools and agencies to provide resource-limited youth with free seats to our award winning, family-friendly productions. School districts ranging from Dallas ISD to Red Oak ISD and agencies from Hope for Kids to the Oak Cliff Girls and Boys Club have all given their students what is very likely their first theatre experience at one of Dallas’ cornerstone arts organizations.
Additionally, DSM partners with the Dallas Police Department to offer at-risk youth with a positive alternative to gang-affiliation through the Stage Right program. Participant recommendations are taken from area counselors and other youth program leaders in order to help children visualize a positive lifestyle and encourage self-esteem in addition to arts involvement. Stage Right’s mission is “Raising the curtain for education and spotlighting the appreciation of the arts through experience and positive quality lifestyles.”
On September 17th, we invite you to Do Something More.
Your online gift through northtexasgivingday.org will go farther to inspire more direction and cultivate more possibility for the children of North Texas.
#GiveDSM #DSMisBIG #NTXGivingDay #DoSomethingMore
About Dallas Summer Musicals
Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. (DSM) is the preeminent nonprofit presenter of Broadway theatre in North Texas. DSM produces, presents and promotes excellence in live musical theatre with year-round performances for diverse audiences of all ages, impacting the lives of children and families through community outreach and education, and enriching the cultural landscape of Dallas/Fort Worth, North Texas and the Southwest Region.
As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, DSM relies on a variety of funding sources to bring the Best of Broadway to Dallas at affordable ticket prices, as well as to preserve the beautiful historic theatre, educate young audiences and create important community programs. DSM’s Seats for Kids program provides a meaningful arts education experience to thousands of low income, at-risk and special needs children. DSM provides positive incentives for youth that are at risk for gang membership through the Stage Right program. In addition, The Dallas Summer Musicals Academy of Performing Arts offers professional theatre arts training and scholarships to talented students in need. DSM’s High School Musical Theatre Awards are patterned after Broadway’s Tony® Awards and celebrates the power of the arts to significantly improve all areas of education. Hear Us Now!™ is DSM’s newest initiative. Since 2010 the experts at DSM have made significant changes and upgrades to its acoustical systems to improve the sound quality of the productions for all its patrons, including the hearing impaired. It is so unique that a trademark has been allowed by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Ticket sales alone do not sustain these endeavors. Only support from committed businesses, foundations and individuals make these programs possible.
Dallas Summer Musicals is presented by Texas Instruments and gratefully acknowledges the support of our season sponsors and partners The Dallas Morning News, WFAA TV Channel 8, American Airlines, and The Original Cupcakery.
For more information about Dallas Summer Musicals, please call 214.421.5678 or visit our website at DallasSummerMusicals.org.
March 12th, 2015
The DSM Academy of Performing Arts is pleased to announce auditions for an opportunity to be selected for the Academy Industry Showcase.
As the Academy expands its relationship with the premiere Industry professionals in the Metroplex, we will find the most “industry ready” actors to present their finest skills to top agents, casting directors, and other professionals.
Auditions will be held Saturday, March 14th from 8:30 a.m.to Noon and 1:00 p.m.to 6:00 p.m. for the first 75 people, ages 10 or older, to sign up. Younger students may be invited. An additional audition day on Tuesday, March 17th from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. will be added, if needed. Audition appointments are five minutes in length and will be held at:
Central Christian Church
4711 Westside Dr., Dallas, TX 75209
ATTENTION: You must prepare a one minute monologue from a play. You may be asked to sing and dance as well. The showcase is limited to 24 participants.
Click here to sign up to audition.
Those selected will become part of a 10 week intensive that will meet at the Central Christian Church on Saturday, March 21st through May 30th from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. It will culminate in a performance on Wednesday evening June 3rd at 7:30 p.m. following a 5:00 p.m. performance for Family and Friends at:
International Conservatory of Performing Arts
3321 Premier Drive, Plano, TX 75023
There is no charge to register for the audition. Student must be 10 years of age or older unless invited by the Academy. If selected, the program cost is $249 for 10 weeks.
The class will be led by DSM Academy Instructor and Director Steven Kavner (award-winning actor, former member of the legendary Los Angeles improvisation company The Groundings, and Peabody Award-winning Producer). Mr. Kavner will be supported by DSM Academy’s musical, dance and production staff.
Class: Industry Showcase
Showcase Auditions: Ages 10 and up, Saturday March 14, 9:00 a.m.–Noon and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Class & Audition Location: Central Christian Church, 4711 Westside Dr., Dallas, TX 75209
Class Dates & Times: Saturdays, March 21-May 30, 2015, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Class Limit: 24 students
Performance: Wednesday June 3, 2015, 5:00 p.m. for family and friends, 7:30 p.m. for industry professionals
Performance Location: International Music Conservatory, 3221 Premier Dr., Plano, TX
Program Cost: $249 – There is no cost to audition.
Audition Registration: http://www.emailmeform.com/builder/form/rxy8RjbqconiaOCEVs9Jd3B8d
Details on our website at: http://www.academyatdsm.org/
Call for more information: 214-969-7469
About DSM Academy Of Performing Arts: The DSM Academy of Performing Arts was founded in 1999 and operates as an affiliate of Dallas Summer Musicals in several locations in the Dallas area. Dallas Summer Musicals is a company that produces and presents Broadway, off-Broadway, West End and touring theatrical productions. The DSM Academy is comprised of 75% teens and 25% adults ranging in age from 7 to adult. The Academy is proud of its diverse and ethnic student population. The DSM Academy has granted over 250 need-based scholarships. The Academy helps to prepare the amateur and the professional for involvement in the performing arts. The purpose of this page is to connect people who have a common interest in the performing arts of any type.
Mission: Recognizing the positive influence of the arts on the human experience, DSM Academy of Performing Arts strives not only to increase appreciation of the performing arts, but to teach those arts professionally.
March 5th, 2015
Update to this post:
All performances will be performed as scheduled. No performances will be cancelled or rescheduled.
The Box Office has been overwhelmed with phone calls and emails and are trying to respond as quickly as they can.
If you have or had tickets for any of the bad weather days, just bring your tickets to another performance of KINKY BOOTS. The show leaves on Sunday after our 1:30p matinee. The box office at the Music Hall opens 1.5 hours before each performance. This weather snuck up on all of us – I hope you and your family are staying safe and warm!
Thanks, DSM Amanda
February 24th, 2015
The Show Must Go On!
The weather outside is frightful, but the show is so delightful! Kinky Boots opens tonight! We have been looking forward to this show for a long time, but what bad timing this icy and snowy weather has! You know the show biz saying though, so we won’t cancel any performance, but we don’t want you to feel you have to come if you don’t feel like you can safely make it here.
Here’s what you need to know if you have tickets for Kinky Boots during this bad weather time:
How do you get in contact with The Box Office? Just call 214-691-7200 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please be safe and use your best judgement. We hope to see you at the Tony-Award winning KINKY BOOTS while the show is here in Dallas at the Music Hall thru March 8th!
For details and information about KINKY BOOTS, click here.
Be safe and stay warm!
May 13th, 2014
WALKS DOWN THE AISLE
OF THE MUSIC HALL AT FAIR PARK
THE GLOBAL SMASH HIT WILL RETURN TO DALLAS
FOR TWO WEEKS ONLY JUNE 3-15!
DALLAS, TX…Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus’ MAMMA MIA!, the smash hit musical based on the songs of ABBA, returns to the Music Hall at Fair Park June 3-15, 2014. Performances begin on Tuesday, June 3 at 7:30 p.m. and run through Sunday, June 15.
Seen by over 42 million people around the world, MAMMA MIA!, is celebrating over 3,650 performances in its ninth smash hit year on Broadway at The Winter Garden Theatre and remains one of Broadway’s top selling musicals.. The original West End production of MAMMA MIA! is celebrating 10 years and over 4,000 performances in London, an international tour has visited more than 50 foreign cities, and the blockbuster feature film adaptation is the most successful movie musical of all time grossing over $600 million worldwide.
An independent, single mother who owns a small hotel on an idyllic Greek island, Donna is about to let go of Sophie, the spirited daughter she’s raised alone. For Sophie’s wedding, Donna has invited her two lifelong best girlfriends—practical and no-nonsense Rosie and wealthy, multi-divorcee Tanya – from her one-time backing band, Donna and the Dynamos. But Sophie has secretly invited three guests of her own.
On a quest to find the identity of her father to walk her down the aisle, she brings back three men from Donna’s past to the Mediterranean paradise they visited 20 years earlier. Over 24 chaotic, magical hours, new love will bloom and old romances will be rekindled on this lush island full of possibilities.
Inspired by the storytelling magic of ABBA’s songs from “Dancing Queen” and “S.O.S.” to “Money, Money, Money” and “Take a Chance on Me,” MAMMA MIA! is a celebration of mothers and daughters, old friends and new family found.
Single tickets for MAMMA MIA! are priced from $20-$90, available at The Box Office, 5959 Preston Royal Shopping Center #542 in Dallas, or at any Ticketmaster outlet. Tickets are also available online at www.ticketmaster.com or www.dallassummermusicals.org.
Groups of 10 or more receive a 15% discount and priority seating. Please call 214-426-GROUP (4768) or email email@example.com.
Produced by Judy Craymer, Richard East and Björn Ulvaeus for Littlestar in association with Universal, the creative team responsible for bringing MAMMA MIA! to theatrical life includes some of the most gifted and celebrated talents of musical theatre and opera. With music and lyrics by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, MAMMA MIA! is written by Catherine Johnson and directed by Phyllida Lloyd. MAMMA MIA! has choreography by Anthony Van Laast, production design by Mark Thompson, lighting design by Howard Harrison, sound design by Andrew Bruce and Bobby Aitken, and musical supervision, additional material and arrangements by Martin Koch.
The special edition cast recording of MAMMA MIA! is available on Decca Broadway.
For information about MAMMA MIA! go to www.mammamianorthamerica.com.
DSM season continues with NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT, September 2-14 at the Music Hall at Fair Park. The champagne flows and the gin fizzes in this hilarious Tony® winning new musical. It’s the roaring twenties, and a cast of outrageous characters gather in New York to celebrate the wedding of wealthy playboy Jimmy Winter. But things don’t go as planned when the playboy meets Billie Bendix, a bubbly and feisty bootlegger who melts his heart. Featuring a treasure trove of George and Ira Gershwin’s most beloved instantly recognizable tunes, set in a fresh and funny song and dance spectacular with a book by Tony winner Joe DiPietro and direction by Tony winner Kathleen Marshall. Filled to the brim with such classic songs as “But Not for Me,’ “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off,” “I’ve Got a Crush on You,” and “Someone to Watch Over Me,” this sparkling tale combines laughter, romance and high-stepping Broadway magic for an evening bursting with girls, glamour, and those glorious Gershwin songs.
DSM will be kicking off their 75th anniversary season Thursday, June 12 in the Band Shell at Fair Park…where they first started on that date in 1941. More information about this special event and invitations to attend will be sent soon.
Season sponsors and partners for Dallas Summer Musicals are The Dallas Morning News, WFAA TV Channel 8, American Airlines, and The Original Cupcakery.
Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. (DSM) is the preeminent non-profit presenter of Broadway theatre in North Texas. DSM produces, presents and promotes excellence in live musical theatre with year-round performances for diverse audiences of all ages, impacting the lives of children and families through community outreach and education, and enriching the cultural landscape of Dallas/Fort Worth, North Texas and the Southwest Region.
DSM is the largest producer and presenter of live theatrical entertainment in the Southwest, the second oldest summer theatre organization in the United States, and the fourth largest non-profit theatre company. In addition to presenting national Broadway tours, DSM also produces shows on Broadway, presents and tours productions, and is involved in developing new works. Dallas Summer Musicals’ affiliates include DSM Management Group, Inc. (DSMMGI), which manages the Music Hall at Fair Park.
As a nonprofit organization, DSM relies on a variety of funding sources to bring the Best of Broadway to Dallas at affordable ticket prices, as well as to preserve the beautiful historic theater, educate young audiences and create important community programs.DSM’s Seats for Kids program provides a meaningful arts education experience to thousands of low income, at-risk and special needs children. DSM provides positive incentives for youth that are at risk for gang membership through the Stage Right program. In addition, the Dallas Summer Musicals Academy of Performing Arts offers professional theater arts training and scholarships to talented students in need. Ticket sales alone do not sustain these endeavors. Only support from committed businesses, foundations and individuals make these programs possible.
For more information about Dallas Summer Musicals, please call 214-421-5678 or visit the website at www.dallassummermusicals.org.
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For media information about Mamma Mia! or the Dallas Summer Musicals, and for videotape, photos, or reviewer’s passes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 469-363-7371.
March 7th, 2014
Q&A with Brian May (Queen guitarist) & Roger Taylor (Queen drummer),
We Will Rock You musical supervisors
INTERVIEWER: I’m just curious. How did this idea come about? I understand Robert De Niro might’ve been the first person to mention it.
ROGER TAYLOR: I think he was involved very early on in the idea of a musical. I think he felt it was something that might be interesting to put a toe in. Brian and myself and our manager, Jim [Beach], had thought for years that it would be an interesting thing to do; just another way to get our music to people.
And we went through a lot of scripts and we decided in the end that we needed to make it more of a mixed comedy with the music.
INTERVIEWER: Brian, I understand you were the person who referred to We Will Rock You as a rock theatrical.
BRIAN MAY: Well, it is a musical, but we came into it as a body of people who really didn’t relate that well to the genre of musical theater. We didn’t want to put on something like My Fair Lady. This is rock and roll and it had to be something very different.
So, we kind of acquainted ourselves with the rules and we gathered together a team around us which was partly built from rock and roll people and partly from theatrical people; it became this great kind of mélange. A little uncomfortable at first, but from that came the strength to create something new. So, we called it a rock theatrical. It’s something which is very rock and roll, very organic, but at the same time has the values of the musical theater, which is that you encapsulate the whole story.
INTERVIEWER: Well, of course Queen was – and is – this sort of enormous cultural phenomenon. How did you take these great songs, which are theatrical in and of themselves, and put it in to this context? I understand that you worked closely with Ben?
BRIAN MAY: Yeah, Ben Elton is the key. We workshopped a couple of ideas and we didn’t like it. We felt uncomfortable because it was autobiographical and we didn’t really feel comfortable with portraying our lives and Freddie’s lives — it just didn’t seem to sit well.
Along came Ben Elton, who’s an incredibly successful writer in England. Ben came up with this idea. He said okay, “this musical is not about the past, it’s not about history, it’s about the future, it’s about the future of kids and how they feel and how they want to express themselves and how they’re looking for that thing which is rock and roll. And that’s the quest of the whole thing.”
Strangely enough, it wasn’t that difficult to put the songs in there because those songs are root bound. A lot of Queen stuff is about finding yourself, finding freedom, breaking away from where you are, breaking into the world. You know “We Will Rock You,” “We Are the Champions,” “I Want to Break Free.” It’s kind of all there.
INTERVIEWER: Queen had such a distinctive sound. It was not a three-chord rock and roll sound, and you had the voice of Freddie Mercury. And in We Will Rock You, we’re hearing it in all kinds of different voices, not just the two leads, one of whom is a girl. What was it like to adapt the music for different voices?
ROGER TAYLOR: Well, it wasn’t as hard as it might sound. We have a lot of our trademark high harmonies in there, which are very suitable for female voices. And I think the melodies are strong. They’re good tunes, and anybody that can sing, can carry a good tune, you know? So, I think the transition in that sense wasn’t hard. It’s not meant to sound exactly like Queen, but it is meant to put our music over.
INTERVIEWER: Now, you know, a lot of songwriters might be content to just say, “here are the songs; be my guest, go ahead.” But you guys have been so much a part of this. I wonder if you can talk about that aspect of being so involved with each production, which changes apparently in each place.
BRIAN MAY: Yeah, it’s a great thing, because it has not become a rubber stamp. Most musicals, from Les Miserables to all of the American musicals, are moved from city to city, but they are stamped with exactly the same moves, the same way of singing and same way of acting. We Will Rock You has never been that way and we encourage people to bring their own talents in to it and make it what they can make it. There’s a script, obviously, and certain things which need to happen but, within that, there’s a lot of freedom for people to be themselves.
INTERVIEWER: What are you looking for when you’re auditioning musicians and actors?
BRIAN MAY: Well, it’s a big ask really and it was very difficult in the beginning to find people who understood what we were trying to do, because you’re auditioning people who have been brought up in musical theater. They’re taught how to project, how to make each note last the length of the syllable, and it’s very much not what we wanted. We wanted people to be instinctive and to be, in a sense, rock stars. So, they have to be able to act, they have to be convincing, they have to be able to sing. A lot of them have to be able to dance as well. And the final big ask is you have to actually be a rock star!
INTERVIEWER: I saw it five or six years ago. One of the things I loved about it, was it had a slamming band. How involved are you in getting that slamming band together?
ROGER TAYLOR: It’s always been very important to us. If the band’s not right, it’s just not going to work. The band takes a bow at the end of the show. It’s an essential part of the show. So the band’s very important: we insist on a very high level of musicianship in the bands, and that’s why we pay such close attention to it.
BRIAN MAY: The band has to be very, very hot and we personally audition them. It’s become a huge family of musicians, all of whom are great. I love those guitarists who can do stuff that I can’t do! And they evolve and they organically become a band; not just a bunch of musicians in a pit reading dots. I’m incredibly proud of the We Will Rock You bands that we’ve put together so far. We have a great opportunity here to build a band which will tour the States and I already know some of them, which is great.
INTERVIEWER: You guys have this great fan base. How does We Will Rock You play for the Queen fans and how does it play for people who are maybe not Queen fans?
BRIAN MAY: It’s a bit of each really. We were conscious that if we just played to Queen fans, even in England, it would be over in a couple of months. So, by and large, we’re playing to people who are not Queen fans. And they have to be led gradually into what to expect and what they’re going to feel.. The show is funny, so, in a sense, you get the impression it’s very light and maybe inconsequential. But by halfway through the second act, you realize that something has happened, you know you are feeling something which you probably didn’t expect to feel, which is quite an emotional thing. And I see it every time I go and watch the show. You see people suddenly experience this kind of emotional involvement and they become part of the show. That’s what Queen were about anyway. The audience became more and more a part of what we did. It was a very interactive thing. So, We Will Rock You is consciously designed that way, it’s engineered to make the audience feel encouraged to drive the show towards its conclusion.
INTERVIEWER: Towards the end of the show, not to give anything anyway, the audience really does become part of it.
BRIAN MAY: They do. It’s a great feeling, I’m very proud of it. You know if an audience just sat there and watched it, then we would have failed. But it’s never happened that people didn’t get up and get into it. So, it’s a joy, I love watching it and I love being a part of it.
INTERVIEWER: What is it like to be at the back of the house? To hear your songs and hear how this works, but not actually be in it yourself?
ROGER TAYLOR: I think we feel delighted, you know, to be of any relevance after all of these years! It’s a long time. But I think it’s the songs. We live on in the songs, and who would’ve thought, you know? It’s nice to be involved in something that’s not extinct!
INTERVIEWER: When you started this journey on We Will Rock You, did you have any idea that 11 years on it would be done not only in London, but all around the world and finally here in North America?
BRIAN MAY: No, we had no idea. Well, it’s the same as Queen; I had no idea there was anything bigger than The Rainbow in the world – The Rainbow was this theater in North London where we thought that would be the pinnacle if we could actually play there. And suddenly we’re playing Madison Square Garden – my God, that’s the place where boxers do their thing – and suddenly we’re surrounded by 20,000 people! We’re in Tokyo, we’re in Rio, we’re playing football stadiums; it’s all beyond our wildest dreams! And We Will Rock You has been the same; it started off as, “oh, wouldn’t it be fun to put a theater production together?” It grew to being a global phenomenon. And I’m thrilled [because] nobody knew how far this could go.
INTERVIEWER: I read somewhere that you did one hundred eighty tracks on “Bohemian Rhapsody” to stack all that stuff up.
BRIAN MAY: There’s probably a hundred eighty voices – three of us multiplied many times.
INTERVIEWER: Unbelievable. I mean that’s such a distinctive sound. What’s it like to hear this in other voices?
BRIAN MAY: It’s really good. You get opportunities to take it to a slightly different place and part of We Will Rock You is that ensemble singing thing, to create the sort of Queen sound. A lot of people don’t realize we don’t like having anything on tape or hard disk. So, in some cases, you’ll see actors on stage and suddenly there’ll be quite a big vocal sound but, they’re all backstage singing into microphones and monitors and creating that stuff live.
INTERVIEWER: And I understand that We Will Rock You was really the first time that Bohemian Rhapsody was done live.
BRIAN MAY: Well, in total, yes. We suddenly have the opportunity, all these voices, we can do “Bohemian Rhapsody complete” with the opera section.
INTERVIEWER: What do you think’s going to be exciting for audiences to discover here on this new tour?
ROGER TAYLOR: I just hope the audiences leave the theater with a feeling of having been uplifted, having laughed a lot, and having been ROCKED!
WE WILL ROCK YOU is presented by Dallas Summer Musicals March 4-16, 2014 at the Music Hall at Fair Park. Great seats still available! Visit http://www.ticketmaster.com/promo/yzbh33?brand=dallasmusicals for tickets and http://dallassummermusicals.org/shows_wewillrockyou.shtm for more information!