"Let the Sunshine In": Once Around the Sun Opens Off-Bway Aug. 11

News   "Let the Sunshine In": Once Around the Sun Opens Off-Bway Aug. 11
 
Once Around the Sun, the new Off-Broadway musical starring Asa Somers and Maya Days, officially opens at Off-Broadway's Zipper Theatre Aug. 11
Asa Somers in Once Around the Sun
Asa Somers in Once Around the Sun Photo by Jason Woodruff

Previews for the new musical — which features an original score by Robert Morris, Steven Morris and Joe Shane and a book by Kellie Overbey — began July 27. The limited engagement will run through Sept. 18.

Jace Alexander directs a cast that also includes Parade's John Hickok, Rent's Jesse Lenat, Brooklyn's Caren Lyn Manuel and West Side Story's Kevin Mambo.

Once Around the Sun, according to production notes, concerns "an invitation from a beautiful stranger [that] offers a struggling New York musician the opportunity to escape his disappointments and take a leap of faith into his dream — but at the risk of betraying family, life-long friends and true love. Seduced by his desire to finally be heard, he makes some unexpected choices and ultimately discovers the flight to glory is nothing like he could have ever imagined."

About the show, Asa Somers told Playbill.com, "I play Kevin, the lead singer of a struggling lower East Side band. He’s approached about going solo, so he’s faced with leaving his friends and his girlfriend. When he goes to L.A., Kevin gets involved with Nona Blue [Maya Days]. She’s a former pop star who was Mariah Carey huge, but now she’s a powerful record executive. They start sleeping together, and Kevin gets seduced by the promise of fame. There’s a reference to [the Greek myth of] Icarus in the title tune ('Spread your wings before they melt away'); Kevin gets drunk with his own power to fly and overreaches himself. But it’s very redemptive and uplifting. And the story all takes place in one year, which explains the title Once Around the Sun."

And, actress Maya Days had this to say about the character she plays: "Nona is a superstar who had . . . a little bit of a breakdown, but not like [the one] Mariah Carey had [where] she was going places acting crazy. [Nona] just walked out onstage one day and tried to sing and couldn't. It was a reaction to stress and pressure. Because of that she stopped singing. . . . Then, this eccentric, rich guy decides to give her her own label, so she becomes a record mogul. And, the story goes from there. She looks at talent. She's extremely smart, [and] she knows what works." The creative team comprises Beowulf Borritt (scenic design), Daniel Lawson (costume design), Jason Lyons (lighting design), T. Richard Fitzgerald (sound design), Henry Aronson (musical direction) and David Spinozza (musical supervision).

The Zipper Theatre is located in Manhattan at 336 West 37th Street. The Once Around the Sun performance schedule is Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evenings at 8 PM, Saturdays at 5 and 9 PM and Sundays at 3 and 7 PM. Tickets, priced at $60, are available by calling (212) 239 6200.

From Left: Asa Somers, Jesse Lenat and Maya Days in <i>Once Around the Sun</i>
From Left: Asa Somers, Jesse Lenat and Maya Days in Once Around the Sun Photo by Jason Woodruff
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