Jose Llana Is a Prison Dancer at NYMF July 20-28; Catherine Ricafort, Albert Guerzon Also Star
By Michael Gioia
Jose Llana, who was seen in the original casts of Broadway's Wonderland and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, stars in the New York Musical Theatre (NYMF) production of Romeo Candido and Carmen De Jesus' Prison Dancer beginning July 20 at Off-Broadway's Theatre at St. Clement's.
Directed by Jenn Rapp with music supervision by Alexander Rovang, Llana — who plays the role of Christian Bagets — is joined by Jeigh Madjus (La Cage Aux Folles national tour) as Lola, Marc DeLaCruz (High School Musical national tour) as Hookaps, Catherine Ricafort (Mamma Mia!) as Cherish, Moses Villarama as Shakespeare, Cosmo Clemens as Oo Oo, Enrico Rodriguez (Zanna, Don't!) as Nana, Albert Guerzon (Ghost the Musical) as Tondo, Andrew Eisenman as Warden and Nathan Ramos as Swing/Prison Guard. Performances continue through July 28.
Here's how the musical is described: "The lives of eight Filipino maximum-security prisoners are changed forever when a video of their dance-based rehabilitation program becomes a viral Internet sensation on YouTube. As the dark prison suddenly finds itself in the worldwide spotlight, these hardcore criminals are given a second chance to find love and happiness in the most challenging circumstances. A modern inspired-by-a-true-story about how fears can hold us captive — and dreams can set us free to dance!"
Other members of the creative team include scenic designer Josh Zangen, costume designer Sky Switser, lighting designer Betsy Adams, sound designer Jon Weston, fight director Rick Sorderlet and production stage manager Travis Brendle.
Now in its ninth year, the New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), which provides a launching pad for the next generation of musicals, is the largest annual musical theatre event in America.
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