Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Pittsburgh CLO Presents "Shrek The Musical

Lukas Poost In North Shore Music Theatres Production Of Shrek The Musical
Credit: Pauol Lyden


Get ready for an “ogre-the-top” production at the Benedum Center July 15-24! Shrek, the smash-hit musical comedy will come to life with a cast of Broadway’s best and Pittsburgh CLO veterans, including Finding Neverland’s Rory Donovan as Shrek and Broadway’s Haven Burton as Princess Fiona.

“Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek…” And thus begins the tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking Donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue. Throw in a short-tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude, and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you’ve got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there’s one on hand...and his name is Shrek. Based on the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film, SHREK THE MUSICAL  is the Tony Award®-winner which brings all the beloved characters you know to life on stage and shows there’s more to the story than meets the ears. Featuring instant classics: “Big, Bright, Beautiful World,” “I’m a Believer” and more, it’s sure to delight audiences of all ages!

ABOUT THE CAST

Rory Donovan (Shrek) is making his Pittsburgh CLO debut. Broadway: Finding Neverland (Mr. Turpin/Captain Hook) Elf (“Buddy” Standby). National Tour: Young Frankenstein (“The Monster”). Regional: Finding Neverland (A.R.T.) The Who’s Tommy (Berkshire Theatre Festival). University of the Arts Graduate.

Haven Burton (Fiona) counts several Broadway productions among her many credits: Kinky Boots, Violet (Violet standby), Shrek The Musical (Gingy, Fiona u/s), Legally Blonde (Margot, Elle u/s), Rent (Maureen). National Tours/ concerts: Shrek the Musical (Princess Fiona), Rent (Maureen), Carnegie Hall’s ‘Take the Stage,’ Symphony POPs in Santa Rosa.

BENJAMIN HOWES IN NORTH SHORE MUSIC THEATRE'S PRODUCTION OF SHREK THE MUSICAL
PHOTO: PAUL LYDEN


Benjamin Howes (Farquaad) was recently seen as Welch in Pittsburgh CLO’s Damn Yankees and Professor Higgins in Pittsburgh Public’s production of My Fair Lady. Originally from Australia, Howes has performed on Broadway (Scandalous, Mary Poppins & [title of show]), Off-Broadway and in National Tours (Mary Poppins, Shrek). Regional credits include A.R.T., The Old Globe, Pittsburgh Public and Asolo Rep, among many others.  Film: Miles, Easter Mysteries. Television credits: Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Flight of the Conchords, One Life to Live.

Andre Jordan (Donkey) revisits the role of Donkey after playing the part on the national tour. Other touring credits include: Joseph…Dreamcoat (Zebulun), Legally Blonde (Carlos), and Mad LIVE UK! (Swing). Regional: Ain’t Misbahavin (Phoenix Theatre), Joseph…Dreamcoat (Ogunquit Playhouse), and Elton John’s Aida (Media Theatre).

Lilly Kwiecinski (Young Shrek) is making her Pittsburgh CLO debut.  She’s an upcoming 4th grader at The Campus School of Carlow University and a third year CLO Academy student where she studies musical theater, dance and piano.

Lexi Patterson (Young Fiona) makes her debut at the Benedum Center.  A 5th grader at Mary Queen of Apostles School, she's in her first year at the Pittsburgh CLO Academy.  She's performed with the Gemini Theater (Gift of the Ice Queen) and MQA (Peter Pan Jr., Alice in Wonderland).

Lucia Williams (Teen Fiona) most recently appeared as Baby June in Pittsburgh CLO’s Gypsy. She attends the CLO Academy and is a CLO Mini Star.  Williams is entering 9th Grade at Oakland Catholic High School.

Dallas Padoven (Pinocchio) returns to Pittsburgh CLO after performing in Singin' in the Rain, Legally Blonde, Footloose, Gypsy, and The Wedding Singer! NYC: Wonderful Town. Regional: Hands on a Hardbody (Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati), Cinci King (Playhouse in the Park), The Who's Tommy, South Pacific (WVPT). He is a graduate of CCM and member of AEA.

SHREK THE MUSICAL is complete with a talented ensemble including Christopher Campbell, Ryan Cavanaugh, Mike Greer, Myha’la Herrold, Justin Lonesome, Evan Ruggiero, JJ Niemann, Taylor Warren, Ixchel Cuellar, Carina-Kay Louchiey, Stephanie Maloney, Mara Newberry, Nkeki Obi-Melekwe and Kate Margalite.

ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM

David F.M. Vaughn (Director) is an award-winning actor, director, and writer. Recent directing credits include Beauty and the Beast at Musical Theatre West, Legally Blonde for 3-D Theatricals and Shrek the Musical at Moonlight Ampitheatre. As an actor, Mr. Vaughn’s credits include Broadway, Off-Broadway, National Tours and regional theaters across the country.  He’s tap danced with Tommy Tune, belted with Sutton Foster, warbled with Sheena Easton and “Shuffled Off to Buffalo” with Gregory Hines.  In addition, he is currently developing a new television series. Mr. Vaughn has taught professionally at the Broadway Theatre Project (headed by Ann Reinking), Broadway Classroom, Camp Broadway, and master classes at various universities throughout the country.

Justin Greer (Choreographer) has worked as a performer, swing and dance captain in a career that has spanned twenty years, including nine Broadway shows. As a choreographer, Mr. Greer has assisted in the first national tours of Anything Goes and Shrek the Musical. He has also been working on several operas as a choreographer. Recent productions include The Ghosts of Versailles, The Rape of Lucrecia and Opera Seria at Wolf Trap Opera, Little Shop of Horrors, and Shrek the Musical with 3D Theatricals. He holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and currently resides in New York City.

Tom Helm (Music Director) returns for his 21st season with Pittsburgh CLO. His theater credits include the Broadway productions of Souvenir, Les Miserables, Me and My Girl, CATS and Brigadoon. He has also contributed his talents to television programs such as Crazy For You and the Today Show. Mr. Helm has conducted at Radio City Music Hall, Paper Mill Playhouse and many other regional and national theaters.
Paul Miller (Lighting Designer) counts the following Broadway credits among many others: Amazing Grace, Legally Blonde, Freshly Squeezed, Laughing Room Only; Irma La Douce, Where’s Charley?, Lost in the Stars, Of Thee I Sing, and Music in the Air (Encores). Off-Broadway: Out Of The Mouths Of Babes, Clinton – The Musical, Lucky Guy, Nunsense, Vanities - the Musical, Waiting for Godot, Addicted, Balancing Act.  Regional: Stratford Shakespeare, Chicago Shakespeare, Idaho Shakespeare, Great Lakes Theatre Festival, Cleveland Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, Bay Street, Lookingglass, Goodspeed. Tours: Elf, Shrek The Musical, Storytime Live, Wizard of Oz, Sweeney Todd, Legally Blonde, Nunsense, Scooby Doo and The Sound of Music. Television: Live from Lincoln Center; “New Year’s Eve Celebration in Times Square.”

HISTORY OF THE SHOW

SHREK THE MUSICAL is based off of the 2001 DreamWorks film Shrek – a movie conceptualized from a children’s book of the same title by William Steig. The Broadway production premiered seven years after the wildly-popular film, delighting New York audiences with a musical-spin on the fan-favorite fairytale. SHREK THE MUSICAL opened at the Broadway Theatre in New York in December 2008.

SHREK THE MUSICAL garnered eight Tony Award® nominations, including Best Musical and Best Original Score, and took home the award for Best Costume Design of a Musical. The production also earned three Drama Desk™ Awards as well as four Outer Critics Circle™ Awards. Following success on Broadway, SHREK THE MUSICAL hit the road on several National Tours and has since gained widespread popularity among regional theaters.

ABOUT THE ORIGINAL CREATIVE TEAM

David Lindsay-Abaire (Book & Lyrics) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, librettist, lyricist and screenwriter responsible for the heartwarming and hilarious book and lyrics of SHREK THE MUSICAL. His work on SHREK THE MUSICAL was honored with eight Tony Award® nominations, four Olivier Award nominations and a Grammy® nomination.  Additionally, Lindsay-Abaire was awarded the Ed Kleban Award for America’s most promising musical theater lyricist. His play The Rabbit Hole was honored with the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and five Tony nominations. Lindsay-Abaire’s Good People was nominated for two Tony Awards® and won the New York Drama Critics Circle™ Award for Best Play. Other credits include Fuddy Meers, Kimberly Akimbo, A Devil Inside, Wonder of the World, Rise of the Guardians, Poltergeist (2015), Oz The Great and Powerful and Inkheart.

Jeanine Tesori (Music) created the toe-tapping score for SHREK THE MUSICAL, which received a Tony Award® nomination for Best Original Score and a Drama Desk™ Award for Outstanding Music.  Prior to lending her talents to SHREK THE MUSICAL, Tesori earned Tony nominations for Best Original Score for Caroline, or Change and Thoroughly Modern Millie. In 1999, her work in Twelfth Night won the Drama Desk Award® for Outstanding Music in a Play and was a nominee for the Tony for Best Original Musical Score. Her contributions to Broadway hit Fun Home won her the Tony Award® for Best Original Score as well as Drama Desk™ and Pulitzer Prize nominations. Additional Credits include Violet, A Free Man of Color, Swing! and Dream.

Performance Schedule for SHREK THE MUSICAL

Friday, July 15 8 p.m.
Saturday, July 16 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Sunday, July 17 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Tuesday, July 19 8 p.m.
Wednesday, July 20 8 p.m.
Thursday, July 21 8 p.m.
Friday, July 22 8 p.m.
Saturday, July 23 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Sunday, July 24 2 p.m.

TICKETS

Tickets are available online at pittsburghCLO.org, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square. Tickets start at $25. Half-price tickets are available for children ages 3-14, sponsored by Giant Eagle. Certain restrictions apply. Call our Group Sales Hotline at 412-325-1582 for more information. Visit pittsburghCLO.org for further information.

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