Here’s the press release from Porchlight Music Theatre:
Porchlight Music Theatre Chicago
2011–2012 Season Featuring
the Sondheim Musical Revue Putting it Together,
the Chicago Premiere of Harvey Fierstein’s A Catered Affair,
and Jonathan Larson’s Rock Musical tick, tick… BOOM!
CHICAGO—Porchlight Music Theatre, nationally recognized for developing innovative new works, reimagining classic productions, and showcasing musical theater’s rising stars, announces its 2011-2012 season. The season will open with legendary composer Stephen Sondheim’s musical revue Putting it Together (September 2 to October 16, 2011), followed by the Chicago premiere of multi-Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein’s A Catered Affair (February 17 to April 1, 2012), and conclude with tick, tick… BOOM! (April 27 to June 10, 2012), an internationally acclaimed musical by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winner Jonathan Larson. Putting it Together will play at Theater Wit, 1229 W Belmont Ave. The remainder of the season will play at Stage773, 1225 W Belmont.
Porchlight Music Theatre kicks off its 17th season with its 13th production of a Stephen Sondheim work with the musical revue Putting it Together, directed and choreographed by Jeff Award winner Brenda Didier (Porchlight’s Ragtime, Cirque Shanghai, and Cats at Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre). Devised by Sondheim and Olivier Award winner Julia McKenzie, the Los Angeles Times raved that Putting it Together is “a Sondheim bouquet.” Poignant, witty, and ultimately uplifting, the production is a thematic celebration of the timeless work of seven-time Tony Award-winner and Pulitzer Prize-winner Stephen Sondheim, the foremost theatrical composer and lyricist of his generation. Putting it Together is the emotional story of the entangled relationships of five guests attending a Manhattan cocktail party as they are confronted with the troubles of marriage, infidelity and divorce. The production includes songs from Sondheim’s original musicals and films including A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Merrily We Roll Along, Anyone Can Whistle, Sunday in the Park with George, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, The Frogs, and Sweeney Todd. The revue first premiered in the U.K. in 1992 and opened on Broadway in 1993 with a cast including Julie Andrews. Putting it Together will run from September 2, 2011 to October 16, 2011.
Porchlight Music Theatre will present the highly anticipated Chicago premiere of A Catered Affair, running from February 17, 2012 to April 1, 2012. The production is directed by Jeff Award winner Nick Bowling (Porchlight’s Closer than Ever) with musical direction by Jeff Award winner and Porchlight Artistic Associate Doug Peck (Porchlight’s Assassins and most recently the Goodman Theatre’s Candide), and will star Jeff Award winner Rebecca Finnegan (Porchlight’s Sweeney Todd, Gypsy, and Closer Than Ever and Drury Lane Theatre’s Cabaret) as the mother, Aggie. A Catered Affair features a book by multi-Tony Award winning actor and playwright Harvey Fierstein (Hairspray, La Cage aux Folles) and music and lyrics by John Bucchino. The musical is based on both the 1956 filmThe Catered Affair, written by Gore Vidal, and the original 1955 teleplay by Paddy Chayefsky. A Catered Affair was called “a celebration of life” by USA Today and Variety enthused that the production “…resonates due to its modesty, grace, gentleness and emotional integrity—qualities not often front and center in musicals.” Set in the Bronx in 1953, A Catered Affair is a bittersweet reflection on the complexities of relationships between husbands and wives and parents and children. A couple must decide whether to spend their life savings on a family business or to celebrate their only daughter’s marriage with a lavish catered affair, providing her with the joyful wedding they never had for themselves. A beautiful exploration of the resilience of love, A Catered Affair features a melodious, 50s-inspired score. The production received three Tony Award nominations, eleven Drama Desk Award Nominations as well as the Drama League Award for Distinguished Production of a Musical.
Porchlight Music Theatre will present tick, tick… BOOM! from April 27, 2012 to June 10, 2012. The musical’s book, music and lyrics are by Jonathan Larson, winner of a Pulitzer Prize and two Tony Awards for his musical masterpiece Rent. Praised as “sweet, simple and hopeful” by The New York Times, tick, tick… BOOM! was hailed as “interesting, lovely and vital” by The Hartford Courant. Set in New York City in 1990, tick, tick… BOOM! is Larson’s semi-autobiographical story of Jon, an aspiring composer anxiously approaching his 30th birthday. Jon’s girlfriend wants to get married and leave New York for a more conventional life, his best friend is earning a fortune on Madison Avenue, and Jon is still waiting on tables while trying to create the great American musical. An inspiring story of a struggling artist who chooses to follow his dreams, tick, tick… BOOM! features a dynamic pop-rock score blended with traditional musical theater styles, in what many believe to be Larson’s homage to Stephen Sondheim. tick, tick… BOOM! premiered off- Broadway in 2001 and received seven Drama Desk Award nominations as well as the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical. The production had a successful American Tour in 2003 and has been staged in countries throughout the world, including a West End production.
Season subscriptions are available for just $99 each through the Porchlight Music Theatre website, www.porchlighttheatre.com.
About Porchlight Music Theatre
Porchlight Music Theatre is Chicago’s music theater leader; producing award-winning interpretations of classic musicals and cutting-edge new works on intimate stages. The company is recognized for providing nurture and challenge for stars-in-the-making as well as veteran performers.
The 2011-12 season was created by Porchlight Artistic Associates after longtime Artistic Director L. Walter Stearns announced his resignation last fall. Porchlight artists conceived a season that builds on the growth created by Stearns during his 12-year tenure, while looking forward to a new era for the company. Porchlight is currently undertaking a national search for a new Artistic Director. An announcement will be made this spring. Stearns will direct this season’s final production of The King and I before stepping down in June.
Porchlight Music Theatre has staged 45 shows including five world premieres, among them, The Teapot Scandals, its first work developed through Off the Porch, Porchlight’s new works program, as well as eight Chicago premieres. An Equity theater since 2004, the company has already received a total of 34 Joseph Jefferson Award nominations resulting in 11 Jeff Awards.
The company is partially supported by generous contributions from the A.R.T League, the Arts Work Fund at the Chicago Community Trust, a City Arts Program 2 Grant from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation, the Shen Family Foundation, the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council (a state agency), the MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the National Association of Realtors, Peoples Energy and The Saints.
PORCHLIGHT MUSIC THEATRE’S
Putting it Together
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Devised by Stephen Sondheim and Julia McKenzie
Directed by Brenda Didier
Performances from September 2 through October 16, 2011 at Theatre Wit
A Catered Affair
Music & Lyrics by John Bucchino
Book by Harvey Fierstein
Directed by Nick Bowling
Musical Direction by Doug Peck
Performances from February 17 through April 1, 2012 at Stage 773
tick, tick… BOOM!
Book, Music and Lyrics by Jonathan Larson
Script Consultation by David Auburn
Performances from April 27 through June 10, 2012 at Stage 773