Playwrights, directors and performers from around the country have trekked to the mountains to help shape plays, a musical and a dance creation this year.
The 10th Annual Perry-Mansfield New Works Festival (June 6-14, with public presentations June 15-17) "brings performing arts professionals together in the Rocky Mountains to develop new pieces of drama, musical theatre and dance, and to mentor new talent in each medium."
Presented in artistic partnership with the Actors Theatre of Louisville, Denver Center Theatre Company, Off-Broadway's Primary Stages, and with sponsorship from the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust and the ASCAP Foundation, the New Works Festival "continues Perry-Mansfield's founding principle of nurturing new talent."
The New Works Festival schedule for the 2007 repertory of new works by developing artists includes:
Featured PresentationsJune 15 at 8 PM: The Cherry Sisters Revisited by Dan O'Brien (The Voyage of the Carcass, The Dear Boy, Moving Picture and Key West), directed by Andrew Leynse. "A new play based on the true story of Addie, Effie, Lizzie, Ella, and Jessie Cherry, five sisters from Marion, Iowa, who took the vaudeville world by storm with the collective awfulness of their talent." With music direction by Amir Khosrowpour, the cast features Mary Bacon as Effie, Kate Anya Gersten as Lizzie, Jennifer Harris as Ella, Paul Carlin as Pops, Jessica St. Clair as Addie and Susan Stone as Jessie.June 16 at 1 PM: Lydia by Octavio Solis (Man of the Flesh, Prospect, The Seven Visions of Encarnacion), directed by Juliette Carrillo. "About a Mexican immigrant family mired in grief, rage and guilt over a daughter tragically disabled on the eve of her quinceanera (15th birthday). Lyrical, dark, shocking and magical, this meditation on family and cultural identity in the 1970s is a brilliant new play from an award-winning writer." The cast features Christian Barillas as Misha, Stephanie Beatriz as Lydia, Ruben Garfias as Claudio, Ivan Lopez as Rene, Catalina Maynard as Rosa, Onahoua Rodriguez as Ceci and Douglas Spain as Alvaro.June 16 at 4 PM: A Sleeping Country by Melanie Marnich (Quake, Blue), directed by Marc Masterson. "A comedy that begins in New York, where a desperate insomniac is convinced by her equally desperate psychiatrist that she's dying. Her search for answers leads her to Venice, where a sleepless Italian woman shows her the difference between not sleeping and being truly awake. A dreamy story of sleep lost and hope found." The cast features David Wilson Barnes, Anna Camp, Alexander Cramer, Bill McNulty and Carmen Roman.June 17 at 1 PM: The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown, A New Musical, book & lyrics by Kait Kerrigan, music by Brian Lowdermilk, directed by Michael Cassara. The "new musical tells of Samantha, a high school senior, who is trying to tell the story of her life, except that her life keeps getting in the way. As Sam learns to drive, worries about sex, and deals with the loss of her best friend, she also begins to realize that life isn't about telling a good story, it's about trying to live it to the fullest." With musical direction by Mark Fifer, the cast features Donna Bullock as Mom, Heléne Yorke as Kelly, Thom Sesma as Dad, Rob Steinhauser as Adam and Abby Stevens as Sam. Larson Award winners Kerrigan and Lowdermilk are the authors of the Off-Broadway musical Henry and Mudge, as well as The Woman Upstairs and Wrong Number.
June 17 at 4 PM: Plainsong by Eric Schmiedl, based on the novel by Kent Haruf, directed by Kent Thompson. "In this faithful adaptation, set on the high plains of eastern Colorado, Haruf's compelling story comes vividly to life, exploring themes of grief, loneliness, kindness and benevolence. A high school teacher is left alone to care for two young sons while two elderly bachelor brothers who know little about life beyond their farm gate come forward to help a pregnant 17-year-old with no place to turn. As the characters' lives intersect, they come together to create a new sense of family in the community." The cast features Adriana Gaviria as Victoria Roubideaux, Mike Hartman as Raymond McPheron, Andrew Long as Tom Guthrie, Elliott Lowe as Bobby, Kathleen McCall as Maggie Jones, Leigh Miller as Russell, Phillip Pleasants as Harold McPheron with Sam Gregory, Mat Hostelter, David Ivers, Lauren Klein, Dudley Knight, Kendra Kohrt, Leslie O'Carroll, Christine Rowan, Erik Sandvold and Danielle Slavick. Dance Presentation
June 16 at 8 PM: Choreography by Darrell Grand Moultrie (New York). "This Juilliard graduate is making a big name for himself on the national dance scene and brings to Steamboat Springs an evening of his works — new and old — that includes world premieres and old dance pieces." He has choreographed for Colorado Ballet, Connecticut Ballet, Cleo Parker Robinson, Milwaukee Ballet, Juilliard and North Carolina Dance Theater, among other troupes. The featured dancers include Natrea Blake, Paige Cunningham, Amy McClendon and Ephraim Sykes. All rehearsals and performances will take place at Perry-Mansfield (40755 Routt County Road 36, Steamboat Springs, CO). Free open rehearsals will take place June 6-14. A Festival Weekend Ticket Package for June 15-17 is available for $65 and includes all readings and the dance presentation.
For tickets and information, call (800) 430-2787 or (970) 879-7125, or visit www.perry-mansfield.org.