Tuesday, May 15, 2012
An irreverent, hilarious tale of a Christmas elf gone bad; a family-friendly, toe-tapping tribute to a country music legend; and a romantic musical about the roller coaster of love are all subjects of the 59th season of Snowy Range Summer Theatre.
Presented by the University of Wyoming Department of Theatre and Dance, the summer theatre season opens June 5-8, with David Sedaris' "The Santaland Diaries," followed by the crowd-pleasing "Always ... Patsy Cline" June 26 -30. The season closes July 10-14, with the Tony-nominated Broadway musical "Romance/Romance."
All theatre performances will be held at 7:30 p.m. "The Santaland Diaries" and "Romance /Romance" will be presented in the UW Fine Arts Studio Theatre, while "Always ... Patsy Cline" will be presented on the UW Fine Arts Main Stage. Tickets for theatre cost $10 for the public and $7 for students, seniors and children over 5. Discounts are available for groups of 20 persons or more. For tickets and information, call (307) 766-6666 or go online at www.uwyo.edu/finearts .
"The Santaland Diaries" chronicles Sedaris' real-life experience as Crumpet the Elf in a Macy's Santaland display. Touted by critics as "... quite possibly the 31 funniest pages of text published in the past quarter century" (Seattle Weekly), "The Santaland Diaries" riffs on a few of Sedaris' truly odd encounters with his fellow man during the height of the holiday crunch.
This breakout piece for the now best-selling author of "When You Are Engulfed in Flames," "Me Talk Pretty One Day," and "Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim" follows Sedaris' attempts to enter into the holiday spirit as he deals with the humiliation of elf training, abusive customers, screaming children and badly cast Santas.
Directed by Rebecca Hilliker and featuring guest artist Paul Hope from Houston's Alley Theatre, "The Santaland Diaries" is a regular holiday feature on National Public Radio, where it debuted in 1992. It is recommended for mature audiences.
A sold-out hit off Broadway, "Always ... Patsy Cline" is a family-friendly, toe-tapping tribute to the musical legend and one of the most frequently produced musicals in the United States. Based on an endearing true story, the show recounts the real-life friendship between Cline and fan Louise Seger, who befriended the country music legend in a Texas honky-tonk in 1961, and continued with a correspondence until Cline's untimely death.
Directed by Charlotte Guyette, "Always ... Patsy Cline" combines down-home country humor, true emotion and even some audience participation. It features renditions of more than two dozen of Patsy's unforgettable hits, including "Crazy," "Walkin' After Midnight," "Sweet Dreams" and "I Fall to Pieces."
"Romance/Romance" is a musical pairing of two distinctive one-act comedies that explore the roller coaster of love. Based on Austrian writer Arthur Schnitzler's tale, "The Little Comedy," Act 1 is a flirtatious affair, set in turn-of-the-century Vienna, between two worldly high-society types in search of real love.
Act 2 is a modern look at affection and disaffection between two married couples sharing a summer house in the Hamptons, based on the Jules Renard play, "Pain de Menage." Directed by Lee Hodgson and featuring UW Department of Music faculty members Larry Hensel and Nicole Lamartine, "Romance/Romance" was an off-Broadway sensation that moved successfully to Broadway, and is a perfect change from the modern mega musical.
Photo: Katrina Despain and Cameron Rush are shown in a scene from the 2010 UW summer theatre production of "Private Lives." The 2012 season will open June 5-8, with David Sedaris' "The Santaland Diaries," followed by the crowd-pleasing "Always...Patsy Cline" June 26 -30, and the Tony-nominated Broadway musical "Romance/Romance" July 10-14. (UW Photo)