Toronto Premiere of Musical john & jen Opens Jan. 26

News   Toronto Premiere of Musical john & jen Opens Jan. 26 Andrew Lippa and Tom Greenwald's john & jen, the Off-Broadway musical tale of family ties, gets its Toronto premiere Jan. 26 in a staging by Acting Up Stage Theatre Company.

Performances continue to Feb. 11 at the Walmer Centre Theatre in Toronto. A preview played Jan. 25.

With music and book by Andrew Lippa (The Wild Party) and lyrics and book by Tom Greenwald, john & jen is a "forty year journey from the mid-50s to mid-90s that explores the relationships between brothers and sisters, and parents and children during four decades of change. [It's] a musical journey about relationships and the mistakes that we make, reminding us that family ties sometimes bind a little too tight."

Orchestrations are by Jason Robert Brown (Songs for a New World, The Last Five Years).

The Toronto company includes Kyle Blair (a Stratford Festival veteran) as John and Stephanie Roth (U.S. national tour of Rent and two seasons with the Stratford Festival) as Jen.

Michael Jones directs. The creative team includes musical director Wayne Gwillim, choreographer Marc Kimelman, stage manager Dot Routledge, set designer Laura Gardner, costume designer Alex Amini, and lighting designer Gavin McDonald. Artistic producer Mitchell Marcus is mounting the Toronto production. Acting Up Stage Theatre Company is "dedicated to producing intimate musical theatre productions in Toronto, while cultivating a new generation of audiences through thought-provoking, contemporary works." The company previously produced the Canadian premiere of Jonathan Larson's tick, tick…BOOM! in February 2005.

Walmer Centre Theatre is at 188 Lowther Road (at Walmer). For more information, call (416) 927-7880 or visit www.johnandjen.ca.

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