Girl in the Frame Musical Opens Adirondack Theatre Fest Season June 22

News   Girl in the Frame Musical Opens Adirondack Theatre Fest Season June 22 The developmental regional life of the new musical The Girl in the Frame continues with a June 22-July 2 staging that opens the 2005 season of Adirondack Theatre Festival.

Jeremy Desmon's musical comedy is a rumination on the idea of perfection — cosmetic, romantic and personal — as a couple is confronted by the magical coming-to-life of a stock photo in a purchased picture frame.

The musical has been seen at Stoneham Theatre in Massachusetts and will get a staging by Goodspeed Musicals at the Norma Terris Theatre in Connecticut in November. The work was also produced by MusicalFare in Buffalo in early 2005 as part of its subscription season. Desmon reworked the script for the MusicalFare production and also penned minor rewrites before opening.

Opening night at ATF in Glens Falls, NY, is June 23, following the June 22 pay-what-you-can performance.

The Girl in the Frame features Todd Ceveris and Stephanie Kurtzuba "as the afraid-to-commit couple Alex and Lanie." At their anniversary dinner they inadvertently give each other the same gift: a picture frame which comes out of the box with an idealized stock photo of a beautiful woman, The Girl in the Frame. "As Alex and Laney explore the pitfalls of their relationship, their fantasies begin to come to life in strange and hilarious ways," according to ATF.

Ceveris' New York City credits include Twentieth Century with the Roundabout Theatre Company, The Booth Variations with the Moonshine Project, and Time and the Conways with the Epic Theatre Center. Kurtzuba's Broadway and Off-Broadway credits include The Boy From Oz, Bat Boy, The Joys of Sex and Newsical. Alex and Laney's fantasies as well as multiple other characters are played by Vicki Van Tassell and Victor Wallace.

Director Thomas Caruso returns to ATF after directing last summer's production of the spoof musical Mimi Le Duck, which went on to play the NYC Fringe Festival.

Designers of The Girl in the Frame are Eric Renschler (set); Carol Brys (costume), Michael Creason (sound) and John Viesta (lighting).

Writer-composer Jeremy Desmon is a recent graduate of New York University's musical theater writing program. His writing credits include It's Not You, It's Me; Cabin Pressure; I See London, I See France: The Underwear Musical; and the upcoming If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, which will begin touring this fall with Theatreworks/USA.

The Adirondack Theatre Festival's 11th season will run June 22-July 30, at the Charles R. Wood Theatre, a multi-use 274-seat performing arts theatre which was converted from the vacant Woolworth's store in downtown Glens Falls. The old store was used as a makeshift space by ATF in summers between 1996-2002.

Tickets are $25 and can be ordered by calling (518) 798-9663.

For more information, visit www.ATFestival.org.

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This summer, ATF will also stage J.T. Rogers' new play Madagascar, the solo show High Dive and a work-in-progress, Lost, by Melissa James Gibson.

"This season really represents so much of what ATF is all about," ATF artistic director Martha Banta said in a statement. "The Girl in the Frame is a romantic, funny, and contemporary musical which follows in the footsteps of past shows like Mimi Le Duck, Guys On Ice even Heartbeats in our very first season. Madagascar is an award-winning new play which is quickly attracting a lot of attention around the country and will feature a very impressive cast — one of the best we have ever had at ATF, and High Dive is a very funny and touching solo show which reminds me of so many great solo performances we've done in the past such as Fully Committed and It Goes Without Saying. As well, we will give our audience a sneak peak at a new play titled Lost, which we commissioned from an Obie Award-winning playwright. This season truly has a show for everyone."

High Dive (July 6-16) is writer-actress Leslie Ayvazian's 2001 solo work, seen Off-Broadway and around the country. The play "begins with Ayvazian standing on a diving board being egged on by her 11-year-old son, and continues with her multiple experiences taking risks on vacations around the world."

Ayvazian is the author of many plays and grew up in Saranac Lake, NY in the heart of the Adirondacks. One of the scenes in High Dive takes place in Saranac Lake and ATF is currently hoping to have the actual characters play themselves at a performance.

The season concludes July 20-30 with an award-winning drama Madagascar, which is no relation to the upcoming animated film. J.T. Rogers has created "an intricate puzzle of a play where a mysterious disappearance changes three lives and a family who are brought together in a hotel room overlooking Rome's Spanish Steps."

Madagascar will feature the return to ATF of actress Mary Beth Peil (ATF's Wit, 2000), plus Larry Pine ("Melinda and Melinda") and Sheri Parker Lee (Broadway's Not About Nightingales).

This production of Madagascar will be seen in the second annual Summer Play Festival at Theatre Row in Manhattan July 12-16, prior to the ATF run. Gus Reyes will direct.

This season's "work-in-progress" offering is a first glimpse of Lost, a new play commissioned by ATF from the Obie Award-winning playwright Melissa James Gibson (ATF's The 5 & Dime Plays 2000 and Off-Broadway's [sic]). Written specifically for ATF with support form the New York State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, the play will have a two-night workshop presentation June 27-28 featuring a cast of New York based actors under the direction of ATF artistic director Martha Banta.

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While ATF was instrumental in leading and inspiring the creation of the new theatre that opened in 2004, the Charles R. Wood Theater (207 Glen Street — Route 9 — in downtown Glens Falls) operates year-round as a separate non-profit organization which hosts dozens of community arts organizations, meetings and musical performances.