News Column

New Bern Civic Theatre announces plans for 2015 season

August 13, 2014

Sun Journal, New Bern, N.C.

Aug. 13--New Bern Civic Theatre has announced its 2015 season lineup, with eight productions, a summer youth workshop and a Christmas concert.

The lineup includes musical dramas, children's musicals, non-musical dramas and more. The rock opera "Rent" kicks off the season in January, an R-rated production based on the book, music and lyrics of Jonathan Larson. It won a Tony for Best Musical.

It is slated Jan. 9, 10, 16, 17, 23 and 24 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. Sunday matinees Jan. 11 and 18.

Civic provided this overview: "This rock opera tells the story of one year in the life of a group of bohemians struggling in modern day East Village New York. The story centers on Mark and Roger, two roommates. While a former tragedy has made Roger numb to life, Mark tries to capture it through his attempts to make a film. In the year that follows, the group deals with love, loss, AIDS and modern day life in one truly powerful story."

"Simply Simone -- The Music of Nina Simone" has three performances in February, with 7:30 p.m. shows Feb. 13 and 14 and a 2 p.m. performance on Feb. 15.

It was created by Robert Neblett and David Grapes, with musical arrangement by Vince diMura.

Civic provided this overview: "Child prodigy. Jazz superstar. Civil rights activist. Political exile. Nina Simone was all of these things, and more. One of the true divas of the 20th century and a genuine musical powerhouse, she defined a generation and defied classification. 'Simply Simone' is an electric new revue based on the turbulent life and rich artistic legacy of this American musical icon. The score crosses genres from gospel to blues to Broadway to rock and roll."

In March, youth are served with "Shrek TYA," a children's musical.

Shows are March 13, 14, 20, 21, 27 and 28 at 7:30 p.m., and March 15 and 22 at 2 p.m.

The music is by Jeanine Tesori, based on the book and lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire.

Civic provided this overview: "'Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek...' And thus begins the fairy tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue. Throw in a short-tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you've got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there's one on hand...and his name is Shrek. Make room for ogre-sized family fun as the greatest fairy tale never told comes to life in this breathtaking Broadway musical adaptation of the hit movie 'Shrek.'"

The month of May brings "Into the Woods," an award-winning show that may not be suitable for young children.

Show dates are May 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. performances May 10 and 17.

It is based on the book by James Lapine, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. It had nine nominations and three wins in the 1987 Tony Awards and won the 1997 Drama Desk Award and New York Drama Critics Circle Award.

Civic provided this overview: "The Brothers Grimm hit the stage with an epic fairy tale about wishes, family and the choices we make. The story follows a Baker and his wife who wish to have a child, Cinderella, who wishes to attend the King's Festival, and Jack who wishes his cow would give milk. When the Baker and his wife learn that they cannot have a child because of a Witch's curse, the two set off on a journey to break the curse. Everyone's wish is granted, but the consequences of their actions return to haunt them later with disastrous results when they learn the hard way that 'happily ever after' isn't always so happy after all."

In June, the Next Generation Workshop will be held June 15 through 26, with performances at 7:30 p.m. on June 25 and at 2 p.m. on June 27.

The two-week theater workshop is for youth ages 9 to 13.

"The Outsiders," produced by NBCT's Saax Bradbury, is set in July.

Shows are July 10, 11, 17 and 18 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. matinees on July 12 and 19.

The intense drama is adapted by Christopher Sergel from the book by S.E. Hinton. There was a film by Francis Ford Coppola.

The Outsiders opens with an orphaned 14-year-old boy named Ponyboy Curtis, who is a member of the "greasers."

Their rivals are the upper-class socials, or "Socs," who enjoy drinking, driving nice cars and beating up greasers. Tensions mount between the two rival gangs, setting off a turbulent chain of events and results in the death of three teens.

"In the Heights" is a Latin musical scheduled for six shows in August. The show dates are Aug. 7, 8, 14 and 15 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. performances Aug. 9 and 16.

Civic provided this overview: '"In The Heights' tells the universal story of a vibrant community in New York'sWashington Heights neighborhood -- a place where the coffee from the corner bodega is light and sweet, the windows are always open and the breeze carries the rhythm of three generations of music. It's a community on the brink of change, full of hopes, dreams and pressures, where the biggest struggles can be deciding which traditions you take with you, and which ones you leave behind."

Courtroom drama comes to the Civic state on Pollock Street in September with "A Few Good Men."

It is rated R, due to language.

Shows are Sept. 11, 12, 18 and 19 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. performances Sept. 13 and 20.

It comes from a book by Aaron Sorkin, which was followed by a film that won Best Picture by the Academy Awards and Golden Globes.

Civic offered this overview: "This Broadway hit about the trial of two Marines for complicity in the death of a fellow Marine at Guantanamo Bay sizzles on stage. The Navy lawyer, a callow young man more interested in softball games than the case, expects a plea bargain and a cover-up of what really happened. Prodded by a female member of his defense team, the lawyer eventually makes a valiant effort to defend his client and, in so doing, puts the military mentality and the Marine code of honor on trial."

The mood shifts to musical drama with "Evita" Nov. 6, 7, 13, 14, 20 and 21 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 8 and 15 at 2 p.m.

The music is by Andrew Lloyd Webber, with lyrics by Tim Rice. It was a Tony Award nominee for Best Revival of a Musical.

Civic offered this overview: " The film adaptation of the hit Broadway musical depicts the infamous real-life story of Eva 'Evita' Duarte de Peron, the wife of President Juan Peron, who rose from poverty to become the most famous Argentine woman in history. Her huge political influence and constant charity works earned her scorn and fear from the military and upper classes but adoration and love from the workers and descamisados.

Evita's legendary life is displayed before your eyes as the most hated and most beloved woman in Argentina."

The season caps off with a holiday musical Christmas Concert Dec. 5 and 12 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 6 and 13 at 2 p.m.

Call 634-9057 for information and tickets about the upcoming season.

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(c)2014 the Sun Journal (New Bern, N.C.)

Visit the Sun Journal (New Bern, N.C.) at http://www.newbernsj.com

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Source: Sun Journal (New Bern, NC)


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