Oct 262017
 
Dear Evan Hansen Will Be Part Of Ahmanson Theatre 2018 – 2019 Season

L-R: “Dear Evan Hansen” creative team Benj Pasek, Alex Lacamoire, Michael Greif, Steven Levenson and Justin Paul. “Dear Evan Hansen” will be a part of Center Theatre
Group’s 2018 – 2019 Season at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. Photo Credit: Jenny Anderson

 

TONY-WINNING BEST MUSICAL

“DEAR EVAN HANSEN” ANNOUNCED AS PART OF

CENTER THEATRE GROUP’S 2018-2019 SEASON AT THE AHMANSON THEATRE

 

The Broadway Hit Comes to Los Angeles in the Fall of 2018

National Tour Which Launches in October 2018 Will Play More Than 50 Cities

Including Buffalo, Charlotte, Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles

 

Center Theatre Group Artistic Director Michael Ritchie and Broadway producer Stacey Mindich announced that the first national touring production of the 2017 Tony Award-winning Best Musical “Dear Evan Hansen” will be part of Center Theatre Group’s 2018 – 2019 season at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. The Broadway hit will come to Los Angeles in the fall of 2018, specific dates to be announced.

Center Theatre Group Producing Director Douglas C. Baker said, “All of us at Center Theatre Group are thrilled to bring ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ to Ahmanson Theatre audiences. It’s that rare musical that is not only deeply moving and emotional but also entertaining, enlightening and delightful. Truly an unforgettable experience.”

The tour, which will launch in October 2018 at Denver’s Center for the Performing Arts (as previously announced), has also announced tour stops in Charlotte (Blumenthal Performing Arts), Chicago (Broadway In Chicago) and Buffalo (Shea’s Performing Arts Center). The tour will travel to over 50 cities in the first two years.

The winner of six 2017 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, “Dear Evan Hansen” features a book by Tony Award winner Steven Levenson, a score by Academy Award and Tony-winning composers Benj Pasek and Justin Paul and direction by four-time Tony Award nominee Michael Greif. The original Broadway cast recording of “Dear Evan Hansen,” produced by Atlantic Records, was released in February 2017, making an extraordinary debut on the Billboard 200 and entering the chart at number eight – the highest charting debut position for an original cast album since 1961.

Casting, additional cities and engagement dates will be announced at a later date.

 

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Jun 152017
 

 

PRE-BROADWAY PRODUCTION OF “CRAZY FOR YOU” ANNOUNCED AS PART OF CENTER THEATRE GROUP’S 51ST SEASON AT THE AHMANSON THEATRE

FIVE-TIME TONY-WINNING DIRECTOR/CHOREOGRAPHER SUSAN STROMAN

RETURNS TO THE SHOW THAT LAUNCHED HER CAREER

With Music and Lyrics by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin and

Book by Two-Time Tony Nominee Ken Ludwig,

“Crazy for You”

Will Play Los Angeles February 7 through March 18, 2018

 

Center Theatre Group Artistic Director Michael Ritchie and Broadway producer Joey Parnes announced today that the Tony Award-winning Best Musical, “Crazy for You,” with music and lyrics by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin and a book by two-time Tony Award nominee Ken Ludwig (“Lend Me a Tenor”), will be produced by Center Theatre Group in an exclusive pre-Broadway engagement at the Ahmanson Theatre. Susan Stroman (“The Producers,” “Show Boat,” “Contact”), who won the first of her five Tony Awards for choreographing the original 1992 Broadway production of the musical, will direct and choreograph this limited Los Angeles engagement which will begin performances February 7, 2018, and run through March 18, 2018.

“‘Crazy for You’ is – at its heart – a raucous musical tale about the power art has to bring life to a community and purpose to its people,” Ms. Stroman said. “It’s as resonant today as ever, and I am thrilled at the chance to re-discover this show and introduce a whole new generation to its great comedy, unabashed romance and the most choreographically-inspiring Gershwin music the world has ever known.”

“I’m thrilled that a whole new generation of theatregoers will get to see ‘Crazy for You’ at the great and glorious Ahmanson Theatre,” said Ken Ludwig. “It will be a treat for me to roll up my sleeves, revisit the show and spend time once again in Deadrock, Nevada with Bobby, Polly and Bela Zangler.”

Featuring a score of showstoppers by George and Ira Gershwin including “I Got Rhythm,” “Embraceable You,” “Slap That Bass” and “Someone To Watch Over Me,” “Crazy for You” is an irresistibly funny valentine to the American musicals of the 1930s. The book by Ken Ludwig brings audiences into a world of cowboys and showgirls, where a Wall Street guy and a Main Street gal can fall madly in love, put on a show and dance their way to happiness.

 

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Jun 042017
 
Kirk Douglas Theatre 2017-2018 Season

L-R: Chris Anthony Giles, Nicholas Edwards, Dan Rosales, Juwan Crawley and Nora Schell in the Off-Broadway production of “Spamilton” at the Triad. “Spamilton” will play the 2017-2018 Season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre November 5 through December 31, 2017. Photo by Carol Rosegg.

2017-2018 SEASON AT THE KIRK DOUGLAS THEATRE

Center Theatre Group’s 14th Season at the Douglas Features
a World Premiere Comedy, a Pulitzer Finalist Drama,
the West Coast Premiere of a Smash Hit Parody of a Mega-Hit Musical, Plus the Continuation of an Exciting New Tradition

Paul Rudnick’s “Big Night,” Gerard Alessandrini’s “Spamilton”, Quiara Alegría Hudes’ “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue,” and the Second Annual Block Party Make Up the New Season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre

The New Season Begins September 3, 2017, and Runs Through May 20, 2018.

Center Theatre Group Artistic Director Michael Ritchie has set the 2017-2018 Season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City.

“This is a diverse season of productions at the Douglas,” said Ritchie. “But one thing they all have in common is that they resonate with the arts and culture of Los Angeles. “We open with humorist Paul Rudnick’s hilarious but moving look at that uniquely L.A. holiday, Oscar night. In ‘Big Night,’ Paul begins his story on a day when Hollywood seems to be the center of the universe and then turns the world upside down.

“The next work also looks toward Hollywood, where the run of ‘Hamilton’ promises to be a juggernaut,” said Ritchie. “And for the people who come out of ‘Hamilton’ wanting more or those just left wanting tickets, Gerard Alessandrini’s ‘Spamilton’ salutes and skewers Lin-Manuel Miranda’s masterwork … and it’s a flat-out funny night in the theatre.

“Next we looked to our own theatre across town, the Mark Taper Forum, where we are producing Quiara Alegría Hudes’ ‘Water by the Spoonful.’ It’s a powerful work, but it is only one chapter in Quiara’s stunning trilogy. By producing ‘Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue’ at the Douglas, we are able to dive more deeply into the work of this exciting playwright.

“And finally, right after the inaugural Block Party, it is clear that this is a tradition that needs to continue. We chose three productions from Southern California’s many intimate theatres for this year’s Block Party. It has allowed us to introduce our audiences to three amazing theatre companies and deepen our connections with the deep pool of talent and creativity that makes the L.A. theatre community such a singular force.

“Theatre is a collaborative art form that, at its best, sparks conversations among the artists that create it and the audience members that experience it. This season’s productions are guaranteed to keep people talking – at times they may change the way you see your neighbor, at other times they may change the lyrics you sing to your favorite tune – but over the course of the season they will make you laugh, cry, dance and explore the countless theatrical opportunities the city has to offer.”

“Big Night” by Paul Rudnick

Kirk Douglas Theatre 2017-2018 Season

Playwright Paul Rudnick. Rudnick’s “Big Night” will be part of the 2017-2018 Season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre. Directed by Walter Bobbie, “Big Night” runs September 3 through October 1, 2017. Photo by Michael Mahoney.

Obie-winning playwright and renowned humorist Paul Rudnick brings his sharp wit and insightful eye to “Big Night,” getting its world premiere as the first play of the 2017-2018 season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre. Directed by Walter Bobbie, Big Night” runs September 3 through October 1, 2017, with the opening set for September 10.

It is the night of the Oscars and a working actor turned Oscar nominee knows that his life is about to change – he just doesn’t know how profoundly. His transgender nephew has plans for his speech, his young agent has plans for his future, his unstoppable mother has plans for the catering and his partner is nowhere to be found.

Master satirist Paul Rudnick blends a deep humanity with a honed sense of hilarity in this powerful and funny play about family and fame, the personal and the political, and the drive to stand up and speak out.

Paul Rudnick is a playwright, novelist, essayist and screenwriter, whom The New York Times has called “one of our pre-eminent humorists.” His plays have been produced both on and Off-Broadway and include “I Hate Hamlet,” “Jeffrey,” “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told,” “Regrets Only” and “The New Century.” He’s won an Obie Award, two Outer Critics Circle Awards and the John Gassner Playwriting Award.
Rudnick’s novels include “Social Disease” and “I’ll Take It,” both from Knopf. He’s a regular contributor to The New Yorker and his articles and essays have appeared in Vanity Fair, Esquire, Vogue and The New York Times. HarperCollins published his “Collected Plays” and a book of essays entitled “I Shudder.” He’s rumored to be quite close to Premiere magazine’s film critic, Libby Gelman-Waxner, whose collected columns were published under the title “If You Ask Me.” His screenplays include “Addams Family Values,” the screen adaptation of “Jeffrey” and “In & Out.”

“Spamilton” by Gerard Alessandrini

Center Theatre Group will produce the West Coast premiere of the hit musical parody “Spamilton,” November 5 through December 31, 2017, with opening set for November 12. Created, written and directed by Gerard Alessandrini, “Spamilton” celebrates and satirizes the Broadway blockbuster with a versatile cast of five.

The world premiere Off-Broadway production of “Spamilton” has been extended several times and had Lin-Manuel Miranda exclaiming, “I laughed my brains out!”

Marilyn Stasio of Variety mused, “Hip-hop, Broadway showtunes, Viennese waltzes – is there anything this guy can’t write? No, not ‘Hamilton’ creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, but Gerard Alessandrini, whose ingenious parody ‘Spamilton’ simultaneously salutes and sends up Miranda and his signature musical.” And Ben Brantley of The New York Times said, “This smart, silly and often convulsively funny thesis, performed by a motormouthed cast that is fluent in many tongues, is the work of that eminent specialist in Broadway anatomy, pathology and gossip, Gerard Alessandrini.”

“We’re very excited about expanding the show a bit,” Alessandrini said. “We will also be adding up-to-date references to ‘Hamilton,’ Lin-Manuel Miranda and their impact on the current Broadway season. So look out Glenn Close, Bette Midler and Evan Hansen!”

Gerard Alessandrini is best known for creating and writing all 25 editions of “Forbidden Broadway” in Los Angeles, New York, London and around the world. Alessandrini was featured in the 1982 cast of “Forbidden Broadway” and can be heard on four of the 12 “Forbidden Broadway” cast albums. Television writing credits include comedy specials for Bob Hope, Angela Lansbury and Carol Burnett. Directing credits include Maury Yeston’s “In the Beginning.” As a director, he is currently working on an upcoming revue focusing on the songs of Maury Yeston, entitled “Anything Can Happen (In the Theatre).” Alessandrini is the recipient of an Obie Award, an Outer Critics Circle Award, two Lucille Lortel Awards, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Drama League and seven Drama Desk Awards (including two for Best Lyrics for “Forbidden Broadway”
and two special lifetime awards). Alessandrini was also awarded an Honorary Tony Award for “excellence in the theatre.”

“Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue” by Quiara Alegría Hudes

The 2007 Pulitzer Prize finalist “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue” by Quiara Alegría Hudes will be produced at the Douglas January 27 through February 25, 2018. Directed by Shishir Kurup, the opening is set for February 3.

A soldier, like his father and his father’s father, 19-year-old Elliot is back from Iraq with a Purple Heart. As he recovers from his injuries and decides whether to return to Iraq, he yearns for a truer connection with his father and considers his own limited options outside the military.

Kirk Douglas Theatre 2017-2018 Season

Playwright Quiara Alegra Hudes. Hudes’ “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue” will be part of the 2017-2018 season at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre. Directed by Shishir Kurup, “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue” runs January 27 through February 25, 2018. Photo by Joseph Moran.

Phoebe Hoban of The New York Times said “‘Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue’ is that rare and rewarding thing: a theater work that succeeds on every level, while creating something new. The playwright, Quiara Alegría Hudes, who has degrees in music (a bachelor’s from Yale) and playwriting (a master’s from Brown), combines a lyrical ear with a sophisticated sense of structure to trace the legacy of war through three generations of a Puerto Rican family.”

“Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue,” the first in a trilogy of plays, will be produced at the Douglas at the same time as Center Theatre Group is presenting the second play in that trilogy, Hudes’ Pulitzer-winning “Water by the Spoonful” at the Mark Taper Forum.
Presented together, they offer Los Angeles theatre audiences a rare opportunity to immerse themselves in the work of this exciting playwright’s work. Quiara Alegría Hudes’ trilogy continues with “The Happiest Song Plays Last” (2012). “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue” premiered Off-Off-Broadway by Page 73 Productions and was a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. “Water by the Spoonful” premiered at Hartford Stage Company and won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. “The Happiest Song Plays Last” premiered at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago in 2013.

Hudes wrote the book for the Broadway musical “In the Heights,” which received the 2008 Tony Award for Best Musical, a Tony nomination for Best Book of a Musical and was a 2009 Pulitzer Prize finalist. Other works include the plays “26 Miles” and “Yemaya’s Belly” and the children’s musical “Barrio Grrrl!” Hudes grew up in West Philadelphia where she studied music with Don Rappaport, Dolly Kranzapolski and Linda Hudes. She was later mentored by playwright Paula Vogel at Brown University. Hudes is an alumna of New Dramatists and sits on the board of Philadelphia Young Playwrights, which produced her first play in the 10th grade.

Block Party: Celebrating Los Angeles Theatre

Drawing upon the rich local theatre community, Block Party: Celebrating Los Angeles Theatre will return to the Kirk Douglas Theatre for its second season. Presented over six weeks, March 29 – May 20, 2018, Block Party will feature three productions
from local 99-seat or smaller theatres.

Los Angeles is home to over 250 theatre companies that feature an abundance of talent, diversity and ingenuity. Center Theatre Group is tapping into this deep pool of artists for Block Party – a selection of three recent productions from local theatre companies, highlighting some of the best work the city has to offer.

Center Theatre Group has a long history of pairing with local theatre companies including the Deaf West production of “Big River” which was produced at the Mark Taper Forum in 2003 and went on to Broadway before returning to the Ahmanson Theatre in 2005 as part of a national tour. More recently, Center Theatre Group partnered with Ebony Repertory Theatre for the remounting of “A Raisin in the Sun” (which played at the Douglas in conversation with the play’s sequel/prequel “Clybourne Park” which was presented simultaneously at the Taper), with 24th STreet Theatre for “Walking the Tightrope” (also at the Douglas) and participated in other productions around the city such as “The Behavior of Broadus” (with Burglars of Hamm and Sacred Fools Theater Company) and “Birder” (with the Road Theatre Company).

Center Theatre Group received 76 submissions for the inaugural Block Party, which is currently running at the Douglas. The plays selected for the current Block Party are Coeurage Theatre Company’s production of “Failure: A Love Story” by Philip Dawkins, The Echo Theater Company’s production of “Dry Land” by Ruby Rae Spiegel and The Fountain Theatre’s production of “Citizen: An American Lyric” by Claudia Rankine and adapted for the stage by Stephen Sachs.

Theatre companies from the greater Los Angeles area are invited to submit shows for the 2018 Block Party. The plays must have opened at a local intimate theatre between January 1, 2016, and May 30, 2017. Applications are being accepted beginning Friday, April 28 and continuing through May 30, 2017. Theatre companies interested in submitting an application should visit www.CenterTheatreGroup.org/BlockParty.

2017-2018 Season is Currently Available by Season Ticket Memberships Only
The 2017-2018 season at the Douglas is currently available by season ticket memberships only. For information and to purchase season tickets by phone, call the Exclusive Season Ticket Membership Hotline at (213) 972-4444. For more information
about season tickets visit CenterTheatreGroup.org/Douglas.

The Douglas Experience
A popular feature of the Kirk Douglas Theatre is The Lounge, where patrons can enjoy a cocktail before the show in the comfortable lobby of the theatre, and chat with the well-informed and engaging staff. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks can be taken into the seating area. (Many of the productions feature themed cocktails – Tiny Timtinis for The Second City’s “A Christmas Carol: Twist Your Dickens!”)

Patrons are encouraged to come early and explore the interactive displays and activities in The Lounge that are specially crafted for each production. Past productions have included experiences as diverse as a photo booth where patrons could have their photo taken laughing alone with the salad of their choice (for “Women Laughing Alone with Salad”), a timeline showing the history of Chavez Ravine with an area left blank for patrons to add their own memories of Los Angeles (for “Chavez Ravine”), and an electric
guitar in the historic ticket booth of the theatre for patrons to rock out with (for “The Black Suits”).

In addition, the productions are followed by Audience Talks – post-show conversations in The Lounge facilitated by Center Theatre Group’s knowledgeable and specially trained staff.

The Kirk Douglas Theatre is located at 9820 Washington Blvd. in Culver City. Parking is free in the nearby Culver City’s City Hall garage, and a number of the restaurants within steps of the theatre offer exclusive discounts to Kirk Douglas Theatre ticket holders.

Center Theatre Group, one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles’ leading nonprofit theatre company, programming seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1600 to 2000-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation’s leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics and circumstance to serve Los Angeles.

First Season Production:
September 3 – October 1, 2017 “Big Night”
(Opens September 10) Written by Paul Rudnick
Directed by Walter Bobbie.
World Premiere.

Second Season Production:
November 5 – December 31, 2017 “Spamilton”
(Opens November 12) Created, Written and Directed by
Gerard Alessandrini.
West Coast Premiere.

Third Season Production:
January 27 – February 25, 2018 “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue”
(Opens February 3) by Quiara Alegría Hudes
Directed by Shishir Kurup.

Fourth Season Production:
March 29 – May 20, 2018 Block Party:
(Openings March 31, April 21 Celebrating Los Angeles Theatre
and May 12, 2018) Three productions selected from local theatre companies, highlighting some of the best work of L.A.

Apr 292017
 

Star Studded Celebration Of CTG 50th Birthday

CENTER THEATRE GROUP TO HOST

50TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION

SATURDAY, MAY 20, 2017, AT THE AHMANSON THEATRE

Star Studded Evening Will Feature a One-Night-Only Production Starring Stage Alums Annette Bening, Matthew Bourne, Danai Gurira, Alfred Molina, Edward James Olmos, Phylicia Rashad and More to Be Announced

Robert Greenblatt, Chairman of NBC Entertainment, Named Co-Chair of the 50th Anniversary Celebration

 

Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles’ leading non-profit theatre company and one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, announced today its 50th anniversary celebration to be hosted on Saturday, May 20, 2017, at the Ahmanson Theatre.

Joined by Co-Chairs Robert Greenblatt, Chairman of NBC Entertainment, and Sue Tsao, Center Theatre Group board member, the star-studded event features a one-night-only production from writer, director and producer Robert Egan, followed by dinner in downtown Los Angeles’ Grand Park. The celebration will not only pay homage to 50 years of excellence, it will also spotlight Center Theatre Group’s education and community outreach programs as well as its continuing role in creating new work and helping to define the role of theatre both in Los Angeles and beyond.

Star Studded Celebration Of CTG 50th Birthday

Annette Bening and Alfred Molina in “The Cherry Orchard” at the Mark Taper Forum. Bening and Molina will participate in Center Theatre Group’s 50th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, May 20, 2017, at the Ahmanson Theatre. For more information, visit CenterTheatreGroup.org/50thCelebration. Photo by Craig Schwartz.

Honoring Center Theatre Group’s past, present and future, the performance will draw from the many landmark productions that have been brought to life on its stages, and feature celebrated alumni such as Annette Bening, Matthew Bourne, Danai Gurira, Alfred Molina, Edward James Olmos, Phylicia Rashad and more to be announced.

Following the production, guests will proceed to Grand Park for an extraordinary evening complete with culinary delights led by Patina Restaurant Group’s Joachim Splichal with pieces by celebrated chefs Vartan Abgaryan (71Above), Josiah Citrin (Mélisse), Ray Garcia (Broken Spanish), Bruce Kalman (Union) and Frania Mendivil (Patina).

“We are thrilled to have so many incredible artists returning to help us celebrate this exciting milestone, and the power of theatre to shape the cultural landscape of Los Angeles,” said Center Theatre Group Board President Kiki Ramos Gindler. “Our 50th Anniversary Celebration will bring together some of our most beloved and talented artists to reflect on Center Theatre Group’s proud history of world-class productions, innovative programs and field-defining new work.”

“For more than 50 years, Center Theatre Group has been working with the world’s greatest artists to present unforgettable experiences for our audiences,” said Center Theatre Group Artistic Director Michael Ritchie. “Through our 50th Anniversary Celebration, we will reflect on the incredible work that has shaped the Los Angeles theatre community, as well as welcome the journey of our next 50 years.”

Center Theatre Group has welcomed to its stages some of today’s biggest stars, including Angela Bassett, Matthew Broderick, Sterling K. Brown, Viola Davis, Jane Fonda, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Lane, Angela Lansbury, Al Pacino, Chris Pine, Denzel Washington and more.

Happy 50th Birthday Center Theatre Group!

 

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