Phillip Boykin, Christiane Noll, Telly Leung, Brenda Braxton Among Music Circus Summer Season in CA
By Michael Gioia
Phillip Boykin, Christiane Noll, Telly Leung and Brenda Braxton are among the artists cast in California Musical Theatre's 63rd Music Circus season, which includes The Wizard of Oz, Show Boat, Sugar, The King and I and Chicago at the Wells Fargo Pavilion.
The Wizard of Oz, which kicked off the summer season June 21, is directed by Glenn Casale, with choreography by Dana Solimando and music direction by Jeff Rizzo. Performances continue through June 30.
The cast includes Emily Walton (Peter and the Starcatcher, August: Osage County) as Dorothy, Jim Walton (Music Circus' Funny Girl) as the Scarecrow, Shannon Stoeke (Peter Pan national tour) as the Tinman, Jamie Torcellini (Man of La Mancha) as the Cowardly Lion, Heather Lee (Gypsy) as Glinda, Jacquelyn Piro Donovan (Les Misérables) as The Wicked Witch of the West, Doug Carfrae (The Phantom of the Opera in Las Vegas) as Uncle Henry and Bill Nolte (The Producers) as Professor Marvel/the Wizard.
Casale will also direct Show Boat, which will run July 9-14. Dan Mojica will choreograph, and the music director is Dennis Castellano.
The cast includes Tony nominee Boykin (Porgy and Bess) as Joe, Ron Bohmer (A Little Night Music) as Gaylord Ravenal, Jennifer Hope Wills (The Phantom of the Opera) as Magnolia, Jennifer Cody ("The Princess and the Frog") as Ellie, George Lee Andrews (The Phantom of the Opera) as Cap'n Andy, Audrie Neenan ("Sudden Impact") as Parthy Ann Hawks, Nikki Crawford as Julie, Gordon Goodman as Steve, Sharon Wilkins (All Shook Up) as Queenie, Jamie Torcellini as Frank and Doug Carfrae as Windy.
Sugar will run July 23-28 under the direction of Casale, choreographer John MacInnis and music director Dennis Castellano.
The cast includes Jason Graae (A Grand Night for Singing) as Jerry, Brent Barrett as Joe (Chicago), Elisabeth Stanley (Cry-Baby) as Sugar Kane, Lenny Wolpe as Osgood Fielding, Jr., Brad Bradley (Spamalot) as Spats Palazzo, Ray DeMattis (Little Shop of Horrors, City of Angels) as Bienstock and Alix Korey as Sweet Sue.
Stafford Arima will direct The King and I from Aug. 6-11. Bob Richard will choreograph, and Craig Barna is the music director.
The cast includes Tony nominee Noll (Chaplin) as Anna, Paul Nakauchi (The King and I) as the King of Siam, Alan Ariano (Miss Saigon) as Kralahome, Telly Leung (Godspell) as Lun Tha, Diane Phelan (West Side Story) as Tuptim. Ann Sanders (Beauty and the Beast) as Lady Thiang, Luis Avila as Simon, Ron Wisniski as Captain Orton, Rumi Oyama as George, Michiko Takesama as Eliza and Michael Stevenson as Sir Edward Ramsay.
This Music Circus premiere of Chicago, directed by Ron Kellum, will conclude the season Aug. 20-29. Randy Slovacek will choreograph with music direction by Darren Ledbetter.
Lindsay Roginski will star as Roxie Hart, a role she played on both national and international tours, with Brenda Braxton (Chicago, Smokey Joe’s Café, Dreamgirls) as Velma Kelly, a role she played on Broadway. The cast also includes Tony nominee Tom Hewitt (The Rocky Horror Show) as Billy Flynn, Ric Stoneback (1776, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer) as Amos Hart, C. Newcomer (Chicago) as Mary Sunshine and Roz Ryan (Chicago) as Matron Mama Morton.
Music Circus is produced under the leadership of artistic director Glenn Casale and executive producer Scott Klier. For more information and tickets, call (916) 557-1999 or visit CaliforniaMusicalTheatre.com.
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