Memphis Adds Saturday Matinee; ‘Ladies Day Out’ to Offer Special Perks

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Due to popular demand, Arkansas Repertory Theatre has added an additional performance on Saturday, Sept. 27 to its four-week run of Tony Award-winning musical Memphis.

Touted as “Ladies Day Out,” the matinee will offer complimentary mimosas to ticketholders 21 years and older. Those who show school spirit by wearing their team colors to the performance will be entered into a raffle for a one-hour massage. Plus, groups of 10 or more will receive $5 off per ticket. Showtime is 2 p.m. and doors will open at 1 p.m.

Memphis opened on The Rep stage on Sept. 5 to rave reviews from audiences and critics with Little Rock Soiree saying “The chemistry of the entire cast glowed on stage, making the jokes more hilarious, the trials more tragic and the music more meaningful,” while the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette raving that it’s a “145-minute rhythm-and-blues roller coaster ride– one we didn’t want to end.”

In the Beale Street nightclubs of 1950s Memphis simmers a new sound, born of the blues, gospel and rock ‘n’ roll and birthed in the Delta. It takes a young DJ, a white man in a black world, to catapult this new sound to the airwaves of Memphis radio and into the living rooms of white Memphis. What follows is a major cultural divide that tests the boundaries of racial tension and the igniting of a musical revolution that grips the entire country.

Tickets

  • $55 for “A” seating; $40 for “B” seating
  • $5 off tickets for groups of 10 or more

For tickets to the matinee, call The Rep’s Box Office at (501) 378-0405 or visit www.therep.org.

Les Miserables Wins 4 AriZoni Awards

arizoni-logoBig news here at the Arkansas Rep!

The Arizoni Theatre Awards were announced Monday (Sept. 15) and some of our staff and cast won for the Phoenix Theatre production of Les Miserables, which took the stage here last March during our 2013-2014 MainStage Season.

Congratulations to these winners:

*Rep staff/creative team or has performed here on The Rep Stage

The ariZoni Theatre Awards is a not-for-profit organization that promote the vitality of theatre in the Valley of the Sun and Maricopa County in Phoenix. Nominations were announced in July.

Les Miserables nabbed 9 previous ariZoni awards for its 2008 production at the Phoenix Theatre, including Best Musical.

Get more information about these awards here and check out the full list of winners here!

Video: Memphis Preview

memphis-the-musical-at-the-repThe Rep’s first show of the 2014-2015 MainStage Season, Memphis, is still going strong and will continue to take the stage until Sunday, Sept. 28 (with an additional matinee added to Saturday, Sept. 27!).

Get a preview of the show below:

The reviews are coming in for the show– Little Rock Soiree says “it’s funny and powerful and musically intoxicating,” while the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette raves that Memphis “masterfully melds laughs, tension.”

Be sure to check out the preview and share with friends and family and don’t forget to get your tickets (if you haven’t already!) for the high-energy musical that is taking Little Rock by storm! Purchase tickets here.

Behind the Curtain Q&A: Memphis Production Stage Manager Katie M. Dayley

backstage 2With the start of a new MainStage season, we want to showcase the people behind the Rep stage in a series called “Behind the Curtain.” This weekly Q&A series highlights staff members who keep the Arkansas Repertory Theatre running on a daily basis.

Someone who helps keep productions running smoothly– including Memphis, running through Sept. 28– is Production Stage Manager Katie M. Dayley.

Here is what she has to say about her theatre experience here at The Rep:

How long have you worked at The Rep? Off and on from November 2012

Education/training: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Stage Management from the University of Utah

How’d you get into the theatre biz: I fell in love with stage management in college.  My senior year, I did a one-show internship at the Pioneer Theatre Company that turned into a two-year job.  When that was over, I had earned my equity card and have been working as a professional stage manager ever since.

Why your job rocks: I get to be with each production from before the first rehearsal until the end of the last show. Throughout the process, each show grows and comes together like a living creature that then emerges on opening night.  I love being a part of that, knowing the show so well that I see the little adjustments and discoveries that happen after we open and knowing that I am able to help present these amazing pieces of collaborative art to the public.

Best work day ever: My favorite day of the process is the first dress rehearsal.  At that point, we’ve been working for three weeks putting together the acting, choreography and music and then adding the lights, music, set and props. But for me, the show finally looks complete when the actors are dressed in costume.  It is a truly magical feeling see all of the hard work and long hours come together in the instant the show starts.

Favorite Rep show you’ve worked on and why: This one!  My current show is always my favorite.

One thing people would be surprised about your job: How physical it is.  Most people hear ‘manager’ and assume I sit behind a desk directing others what to do, but a lot of my job involves running around moving furniture and set pieces, which is very demanding work.

Favorite seat in the house: Slightly house right of center in the front row of the 1st mezzanine.

Best job perk: Meeting new people.  Every show is an instant family and you learn so much about each other by spending time together in rehearsals and hanging out at the company apartments.

Be sure to check back every week to get a glimpse at a different member of The Rep staff. Buy your tickets to Memphis here!

Memphis Monday: More About the Cast

With Memphis on The Rep’s MainStage right now, we thought it would be fun to showcase more of the cool backgrounds of some of the actors and where you might have seen them before they made it to our stage!

See last week’s post here.

JasminRichardsonHeadshotMemphisWebsite1We will start off with one of the stars of the show, Jasmin Richardson (Felicia). Before joining the Arkansas Repertory Theatre for our regional premiere of Memphis, she was Felicia on the national tour of the show, in addition to being Deena in Dreamgirls. She played the leading role in Aida and joined several cruise lines in her career.

Brent Michael DiRoma (Huey)BrentDiRomaHeadshotMemphis was a part of the popular Jersey Boys and Avenue Q national tours and was in West Side Story at the Gateway Playhouse in Long Island, N.Y. Off the stage, you’ll probably find him playing his guitar.

Tony Perry (Delray) has had a long career in theatre, appearing in numerous New York City productions, including Allegro (Astoria Performing Arts Center), 74 Georgia Avenue (The National Yiddish Theatre), Shelter In Our Car (Symphony Space), Martin: Before The Dream (Negro Ensemble Company), Repo: The Genetic Opera (Wings Theatre), The Groove Factory (New York Musical Theatre Festival) and The Bonus Army (Gym at Judson). Regional credits include Ain’t Misbehavin (Mason Street Warehouse), Five Guys Named Moe (Pioneer Theater), TonyPerryHeadshotMemphisDreamgirls (ReVision Theatre), Big River (Theatre Harrisburg), Me and My Girl (Capitol Theatre), Smokey Joes Café (Irving Street Rep), The Rocky Horror Show (Capitol Theatre) and A Grand Night For Singing (Ramada Express Casino). You also may have seen him in films like Mickey and Finding Oz: A Journey Home. Here is something else that is very cool that you didn’t know: He has traveled North America in a concert of Yiddish and African-American music and has three albums available on iTunes.

 

Before making his Rep debut, Gregory L. Williams (Gator) appeared in the first national GregoryWilliamsHeadshotMemphistour of Hair and Lincoln Center Production of South Pacific; Off-Broadway credits include Broadway’s Rising Stars III (The Town Hall) and The Wake (The York Theatre Company); Regional: South Pacific (Paper Mill Playhouse), RENT (Pioneer Theatre Company), A Funny Thing… (Triarts Sharon Playhouse).

Read more about these performers and the rest of the talented cast of Memphis here!

Behind the Curtain Q&A: Company Manager/Casting Associate Peter Mensky

With the start of a new MainStage season, we want to showcase the people behind the Rep stage in a series called “Behind the Curtain.” This weekly Q&A series will highlight staff members who keep the Arkansas Repertory Theatre running on a daily basis.

Peter MenskyIn honor of Memphis Cast Week, we thought it would be fun to highlight someone who knows brings the very actors who you see on stage: Company Manager/Casting Associate Peter Menksy.

Here is what he has to say about his casting and theatre experience here at The Rep:

How long you have worked at The Rep: 9 years

Education/training: Bachelor of Arts in Dramatic Arts with a concentration in Acting at Dickinson College. I also attended a year-abroad program at The University of East Anglia in Norwich, England with a concentration in playwriting and attended New York University’s CAP21 Conservatory for musical theatre.

How’d you get into the theatre biz:  I lived in New York City for nearly a decade where I worked in (and out) of the city as a professional AEA actor.

Why your job rocks:  I enjoy helping people, so both aspects of my job suit this interest.

Best work day ever:  Whatever today may be!

Favorite Rep show you’ve worked on and why: It’s difficult to narrow down to one.  When we have a very large cast who works well both on and off stage, I always feel that everyone in the building from cast and crew to staff and designers has done well to honor the collaborative spirit of the theatre.

One thing people would be surprised about your job:  I’m lucky to be the first and last staff member who a visiting actor interacts with at The Rep.  First, I contact them to set up their audition appointment, and last, I take them to the airport to see them off on the day after their show closes.

Favorite seat in the house:  BB4 in the First Mezzanine.

Best job perk:  Free theatre and the coffee machine in the admin office.

Be sure to check back every week to get a glimpse at a different member of The Rep staff. Buy your tickets to Memphis here!

Learn more about auditions here.

Memphis The Musical: Engage With Us

With our 39th Season having opened last Friday (Sept. 5) with Memphis, we have a full month of opportunities to engage with The Rep and the musical currently on our MainStage. From shopping and a beer tasting to a concert and after-party with the cast, we have special programming and events for everyone.

Read below for full details about what’s happening this month at The Rep.

The After-Party sponsored by Heartbeat1919091_356731151104_7709067_n
Saturday, September 13
After the show – until the party stops!

Stick around after the show for drinks, and look for members of the cast of Memphis to make an appearance in Foster’s.

Girls Night Out with Beehive sponsored by Inviting 10511285_618969088217835_7659425666994540551_nArkansas
Thursday, September 18
5 – 7 p.m.
Complimentary champagne pour from 5 – 6 pm; Cash bar from 6 – 7 pm

Shop ’til you drop with Little Rock boutique Beehive in Foster’s before show time.

Live from Foster’s with Christopher Key CashUntitled
Friday, September 19
6 p.m.

Get your evening started early with live pre-show music from musician Christopher Key Cash in Foster’s.

 

Beer Night with O’Fallon Brewery sponsored by Arkansas Times and Golden EagleOFallonBrewery
Thursday, September 25
5:30 p.m.

Join the Arkansas Times and Golden Eagle before the show to have a beer from O’Fallon Brewery.


Great seats are still available for Memphis.  Purchase yours online or by calling the Box Office at (501) 378-0405.

Memphis Monday: All About the Cast

With Memphis on The Rep’s MainStage right now, we thought it would be fun to showcase some of the cool backgrounds of some of the actors and where you might have seen them before they made it to our stage!

We will starDanielMcDonaldHeadshotMemphist off with Daniel McDonald (White DJ/Mr. Collins/White Father/Gordon Grant/US Mr. Simmons). While he has spent a lot of time in the theatre world, performing in national touring productions like Grease, Singin’ in the Rain and Chorus Line and a variety of regional plays, he also has a few TV credits to his name, including Sex and the City on HBO, along with The Carrie Diaries on the CW and The Affair.

BillNewhallHeadshotMemphisBill Newhall (Mr. Simmons) is another one who has played a few parts on TV. The longtime actor who has appeared on Broadway in Something Wonderful! and Off-Broadway in productions such as Wuthering Heights, Anna Karenina, Walk on the Wildwise, plus tons more, has rounded out several soap operas, including All My Children (ABC), One Life to Live (Online Network), Another World (NBC) and As the World Turns (CBS).

TatianaGreenHeadshotMemphis

Tatiana Green (Ensemble/”Someday” Backup Singer) has a long background in dance, training at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Ballet Hispanico. In addition to being a performer on Carnival Cruise Lines and dance instructor, she has worked with world-renowned dancer Aszure Barton on Dance Dance Revolution, named for the super-popular dance video game.

 

 

J Nycole Ralph (Ethel/”Someday” Backup Singer/Ensemble /US Felicia) has workedJNycoleRalphHeadshotMemphis on several productions, including the Broadway tour of West Side Story and the original production of Elements. Additionally, the actress has been involved in film, working alongside Chris Rock in Finally Famous and other projects with big stars such as Adam Sandler, Whoopi Goldberg, Jerry Seinfeld, Rosario Dawson, Ice-T, Deirdre Goodwin and many others.

 

JamesRobertsHeadshotMemphisJames Roberts (Ensemble/”Be Black Trio/US Gator) has crossed international lines for his theatrical performing,acting in the Diana Paulus-directed national revival of Hair in the United States, Canada and Japan. Aside from his theatre experience, he stepped out on his own when his solo cabaret show premiered in summer 2013 in New York City.

RyanFarnsworthHeadshotMemphis

 

Ryan Farnsworth (Ensemble/Perry Como/US Huey) has appeared in several Off-Broadway productions, including Candide, Never Let it Go and Zombie Strippers-The Musical. In addition to being a part of the national Jingle Bell Rock tour, Ryan has recorded several songs with Disney Records, Get Bizzy Records and Niagara Records, and has performed in several award-winning independent films.

Read more about these performers and the rest of the talented cast of Memphis here!

Eat Out at Macaroni Grill for Special Fundraiser Night Sept. 10

Macaroni+Grill+Giveaway+(4)Next week, The Rep will be having its first Macaroni Grill Fundraiser night, where the restaurant will donate a percentage of its sales back to the theatre.

It’s happening ALL DAY from 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 10 and we are inviting you to come dine in at Macaroni Grill, located at 11100 W. Markham St., Little Rock.  Bring in the TheRepBW attached flyer or show it on your smart phone anytime that day.

They will keep track of the sales. In return, they will donate the following percentage according to our turnout:

Accumulated Spending                  Percentage Donated To Your Cause

$1.00 to $1,000                                                      10%

$1,001 to $5,000                                                    15%

$5,001 and above                                                  20%

For more information, email Ronda at rlewis@therep.org.

Behind the Curtain Q&A: Set Designer/Technical Director Mike Nichols

Mike Nichols is The Rep's resident set director, designing such sets as last season's Les Miserables.

Mike Nichols is The Rep’s resident set director, designing such sets as last season’s Les Miserables.

With the start of a new MainStage season, we want to showcase the people behind the Rep stage in a series called “Behind the Curtain.” This weekly Q&A series will highlight staff members who keep the Arkansas Repertory Theatre running on a daily basis.

Memphis is starting this week and someone behind the cool set is our Resident Set Designer/Technical Director Mike Nichols, who has been with the theatre for more than three decades.

Here is what he has to say about his theatre experience here at The Rep:

How long you have worked at The Rep: 32 years

Education/training:  BSE in Speech/Theatre Arts at the University of Central Arkansas and a MA in Drama at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville

How’d you get into the theatre biz:  I fell into it when the scene shop foreman job came open at UCA.

Favorite Rep show you’ve worked on and why:  West Side Story and Towns Facing Railroads because of the design process and result.

One thing people would be surprised about your job:  I design every aspect of each set and those pieces are built, painted and installed under my supervision in The Rep’s scene shop.

Favorite seat in the house:  BB17

Be sure to check back every week to get a glimpse at a different member of The Rep staff. Buy your tickets to Memphis here!