By Ernio Hernandez
28 Jul 2005
Performances of the Nevada run begin Aug. 27 and open Sept. 8. From Sept. 3, the show will play on a 10-show-per-week schedule (with two dark nights). The curtain will rise twice a night at 6:30 PM and 10 PM.
Tartaglia — who plays Princeton, Rod and others — and Lyon — who handles Nicky, Trekkie Monster and more — will be joined in the doubled ensemble by Angela Ai, David Benoit, Steven Booth, Minglie Chen, Tonya Dixon, Rita Dolphin, Natalie Gray, Phyre Hawkins, Nicholas Kohn, Michelle Lane, Kevin Noonchester, Brynn O'Malley, Cole Porter, Jonathan Root, Kelli Sawyer, Sharon Wheatley and Haneefah Wood.
Broadway producers Kevin McCollum, Robyn Goodman, Jeffrey Seller, Vineyard Theatre and The New Group are joined by Wynn Las Vegas for the new run at the new 1,200-seat ($40 million) Broadway Theatre built especially for the production within the resort. The Vegas production is the only other Avenue Q run outside of New York.
The 2004 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Avenue Q sends up popular children's television shows such as "Sesame Street" and "The Electric Company," while serving up a bounty of pop culture references. The production bears the warning: "Full puppet nudity, not suitable for children."
The puppet and people-populated musical — which recouped its initial Broadway investment last year — currently plays at the John Golden Theatre with five original cast members (Jennifer Barnhart, Natalie Venetia Belcon, Jordan Gelber, Ann Harada and Tony Award-nominated Stephanie D'Abruzzo) joined by Barrett Foa and Christian Anderson.
The show's creators Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx earned a Tony for their score as did bookwriter Jeff Whitty and the musical itself garnered the top prize as Best Musical at the 2004 Tony Awards. Jason Moore (Steel Magnolias) directed with musical direction by Gary Adler (Altar Boyz).
Avenue Q features puppets conceived and designed by Rick Lyon. Musical supervision is by Stephen Oremus and choreography is handled by Ken Roberson. The design team includes Anna Louizos (scenic), Mirena Rada (costume), lighting Howell Binkley (lighting) and Acme Sound Partners (sound).
Tickets for Avenue Q at the Wynn, 3131 Las Vegas Blvd. South in Las Vegas, NV are available by phone or online at (702) 770-7000, toll free (888) 320 7123 or www.wynnlasvegas.com and www.ticketmaster.com/wynnlasvegas.
Avenue Q plays on Broadway at the Golden Theatre, 252 West 45 Street. For more information on the show, visit www.avenueq.com.