CCM's Class of 2015 in Musical Theatre: Alison Bagli, Sarah Bishop, Eric Geil, Tyler Huckstep, Nathaniel Irvin, Thomas Knapp, John McGill, Charlie Meredith, Christopher Morrissey, Kaela O'Connor, Dallas Padoven, DJ Plunkett, Madeleine Spacapan, Emily Trumble, Lawson Young and Hannah Zazzaro.

Graduating Musical Theatre Major Eric Geil Joins ‘The Book of Mormon’ National Tour

CCM Musical Theatre student Eric Geil.

CCM Musical Theatre student Eric Geil.

We are delighted to report that senior musical theatre major Eric Geil will join the national tour of The Book of Mormon as Elder Church beginning May 12, 2015!

Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Geil has been seen at Cardinal Stage as Enjolras in Les Misérables, at Musical Theater Heritage in Gypsy, and at Kansas City Starlight in The Sound of Music.

Geil’s CCM credits include Marius in Les Misérables, Tommy Ross in Carrie, Frankie Epps in Parade and in the companies of Legally Blonde, Spring Awakening, The Civil War, Street Scene and Chess.

Geil was a featured vocalist in the 2014 Fort Wayne Philharmonic Holiday Pops Concert. He is a proud member of AEA.

Congratulations Eric! Learn more about CCM Musical Theatre’s Class of 2015 here.

CCM News Student Salutes
CCM's Class of 2015 in Musical Theatre: Alison Bagli, Sarah Bishop, Eric Geil, Tyler Huckstep, Nathaniel Irvin, Thomas Knapp, John McGill, Charlie Meredith, Christopher Morrissey, Kaela O'Connor, Dallas Padoven, DJ Plunkett, Madeleine Spacapan, Emily Trumble, Lawson Young and Hannah Zazzaro.

CCM Musical Theatre Presents Annual Senior Showcase March 26 and 28

Cincinnati audiences will get a sneak peek of an original showcase created by the 2015 graduating class from CCM’s Department of Musical Theatre during the annual “Not Famous Yet” Showcase, which runs on March 26 (Friends of CCM benefit performance) and March 28 in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater.

The March 26 benefit performance starts at 7 p.m. and features dinner by the bite and a post-performance celebration. Tickets for this benefit event are on sale now. For tickets and additional information, visit ccm.weshareonline.org/ws/opportunities/NotFamousYetShowcase2015.

The March 28 performances take place at 4 and 8 p.m. and are free, but reservations are required. Tickets for these free performances become available at noon on Monday, March 23.

Each year, seniors from CCM’s musical theatre program travel to New York to present a showcase for the leading agents, casting directors and managers in the business. The show takes the format of a Broadway audition, with the actors showing off their solo and ensemble skills through song and dance numbers. The work is created by the students themselves under the supervision of program chair Aubrey Berg and with the assistance of musical director Julie Spangler.

This year’s performance is the 23rd edition of the CCM “Not Famous Yet” showcase. The annual showcase began with the establishment of the Patricia A. Corbett Distinguished Chair of Musical Theatre in 1991. At the time of its inception, it was the only academic chair of its kind in the United States. Learn more about the Musical Theatre Class of 2015 here.

Friends of CCM Benefit Performance
The opening performance of the Musical Theatre Showcase on March 26 is part of a benefit for the Friends of CCM. The event begins at 7 p.m. and includes dinner by the bite.

CCM alumnus Mickey Fisher.

CCM alumnus Mickey Fisher.

This event also includes the presentation of the Musical Theatre Young Alumni Award, which recognizes outstanding professional achievement by graduates of CCM’s musical theatre program from the past two decades. This year’s recipient is Mickey Fisher, who graduated from UC in 1995.

A writer, director and actor, Fisher created and serves as executive producer for Extant, a science fiction television program developed by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Television and CBS Television studios. The thriller stars Academy Award-winner Halle Berry and is currently shooting its second season. Fisher’s credits also include the films King of Iron Town and Summer Nuts, as well as the musical Something in the Water.

Tickets for the March 26 benefit are:

  • Patron Tickets: $100 each; includes a patron reception before the performance honoring Mickey Fisher, general performance seating, dinner by the bite and garage parking.
  • General Public Tickets: $75 each; includes general performance seating, dinner by the bite and garage parking.
  • Friends of CCM Member Tickets: $50 each; includes general performance seating, dinner by the bite and garage parking.
  • Young Professional (40 and under) and CCM Alumni Tickets: $35 each; includes general performance seating, dinner by the bite and garage parking.

Proceeds benefit student career development grants and scholarships. Seating is limited. To reserve a ticket, call CCM External Relations at 513-556-2100 or visit ccm.weshareonline.org/ws/opportunities/NotFamousYetShowcase2015.

CCM Hosts FREE Performances of the Showcase on March 28
Admission to the Musical Theatre Showcase at 4 and 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 28, is FREE. Seating is limited and reservations are required. Tickets become available at noon on Monday, March 23; please visit the CCM Box Office or call 513-556-4183 to make a reservation. Limit two tickets per order.

Performance Times

  • 7 p.m. Thursday, March 26 — Friends of CCM Benefit
  • 4 & 8 p.m. Saturday March 28

Location
Patricia Corbett Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Purchasing and Reserving Tickets
Tickets to the Friends of CCM benefit performance are on sale now. Ticket options include $100 patron level tickets (includes pre-show patron reception), $75 general public tickets, $50 Friends of CCM member tickets and $35 young professional (age 40 and under) and CCM Alumni tickets. Seating is limited.

To purchase, call CCM’s Office of External Relations at 513-556-2100. Learn more at ccm.weshareonline.org/ws/opportunities/NotFamousYetShowcase2015.

Admission to the 4 and 8 p.m. Saturday, March 28, performances is FREE, but reservations are required. Tickets become available at noon on Monday, March 23. Please visit the CCM Box Office or call 513-556-4183 to make a reservation. Limit two tickets per order.

Parking and Directions
Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit uc.edu/parking for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit ccm.uc.edu/about/directions.
_____

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

CCM Alumni Applause CCM News
From left to right: CCM graduating seniors Eric Geil, Nate Irvin, Thomas Knapp and Dallas Padoven rehearse “Holiday” from American Idiot. The song is featured in this year’s New York Musical Theatre Showcase. Photo by Dallas Padoven.

CCM Snags the Award-Winning Punk Rock Musical ‘American Idiot’ for An Exciting and Eclectic 2015-16 Mainstage Series

From left to right, CCM graduating seniors Eric Geil, Thomas Knapp, Dallas Padoven and Nate Irvin rehearsing “Holiday” from American Idiot. This song is also featured in CCM's New York Musical Theatre Showcase later on this semester.

From left to right, CCM graduating seniors Eric Geil, Thomas Knapp, Dallas Padoven and Nate Irvin rehearsing “Holiday” from American Idiot. This song is also featured in CCM’s New York Musical Theatre Showcase later on this semester.

CCM has secured the rights to present the Tony Award-winning musical blockbuster American Idiot as part of its 2015-16 Mainstage Series. Running March 3 – 13, 2016, in CCM’s Patricia Corbett Theater, this will be the first local production of the acclaimed rock opera.

A critical smash on Broadway and in London, American Idiot is based on the Grammy Award-winning album of the same name by American punk rock band Green Day. The two-time Tony Award-winning musical tells the story of three disillusioned youths who are forced to choose between freedom and the safety of suburbia.

Inspired in part by such classic concept albums as The Who’s Tommy, The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Jesus Christ Superstar, American Idiot premiered at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre in 2009 and finished its most recent national tour in May 2014. With a raucous and exhilarating punk rock score, American Idiot boldly takes musical theatre where it has never gone before. For both the students and the faculty members at CCM, the boundary-pushing nature of this contemporary musical perfectly complements the college’s educational mission.

“Our production philosophy in the Musical Theatre program is simple,” explains Aubrey Berg, CCM’s Patricia A. Corbett Distinguished Chair of Musical Theatre and the director of this upcoming production. “During the four years a student spends with us, they will be exposed to every kind of musical theatre work. In the last few years, we have undertaken shows as varied as the groundbreaking Oklahoma!, the fancy foot-work of Singin’ in the Rain, the moving spectacle of Les Misérables and the beloved childhood fantasy of Peter Pan. And that does not include our Studio Series, which features such cutting-edge works as Carrie and Blood Brothers. Forgotten musicals are also well represented in our Musicals Redux Series, which digs into the great storehouse of musical theatre history to find some lost gems.” Chairman of CCM’s Department of Musical Theatre since 1987, Berg received the League of Cincinnati Theatres Continuing Achievement Award and was inducted into the CEA Hall of Fame in 2010.

CCM Adjunct Instructor Stephen Goers will join Berg as musical director for this production. The two have frequently collaborated on such musical productions as Into the Woods, Carrie and, most recently, Les Misérables. Over the years, their work together has garnered a large number of local arts awards, including Best Direction, Best Musical Direction and Best Musical.

Taking on a 21st century musical is already proving to be an exciting prospect for students at CCM, many of whom grew up with the original American Idiot concept album, which was released in 2004.

“I think it’s so special to be part of a program that embraces new musicals as well as the classics, in order to provide the most well rounded education possible for its students,” says third-year musical theatre major Tom Meglio. “American Idiot already has everyone in CCM’s Division of Theatre Arts rocking out and ready for some Junior High nostalgia!”

Classmate Taylor Alexander agrees: “The original Green Day album was a groundbreaking staple to our generation with its unique view on youth in America. The whole campus is going to be pumped to hear music we all grew up listening to!”

Described by the New York Times as “invigorating, moving and thrilling… a true rock opera,” American Idiot features a book by Billie Joe Armstrong and Michael Mayer, lyrics by Billie Joe Armstrong and music by the band Green Day. The score features the hits “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” “21 Guns,” “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” “Holiday” and the iconic title track.

CCM will announce its entire 2015-16 Mainstage Series lineup in March of 2015. Running from October of 2015 through April of 2016, the series will include two operas, two musicals, two dramas and one story ballet.

Details on subscription packages and single ticket sales will be announced this summer. Visit ccm.uc.edu/about/villagenews/subscribe to register for CCM’s mailing list, and the Box Office will provide you with additional information on this year’s subscription options.

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Mainstage Season Production Sponsor: Macy’s

Community Partner: ArtsWave

American Idiot is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019 | Phone: 212-541-4684 | Fax: 212-397-4684 | http://www.MTIShows.com
____________________

A preeminent institution for the performing and media arts, the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) is the largest single source of performing arts presentations in the state of Ohio.

Titles and dates are subject to change. For a complete calendar of events, please visit us online at ccm.uc.edu.

CCM News
Senior musical theatre major Lawson Young as Elle in CCM's production of LEGALLY BLONDE, playing Oct. 23 - Nov. 2, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM Slideshows: Legally Blonde – The Musical

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

CCM’s 2014-15 Mainstage Series continues TONIGHT with the all-singing, all-dancing romantic comedy Legally Blonde – The Musical, playing through Sunday, Nov. 2, in Patricia Corbett Theater. See a complete list of performance times below.

Based on the novel by Amanda Brown and the MGM motion picture of the same name, Legally Blonde is a modern-day coming of age tale featuring perky and lovable sorority girl Elle Woods. Elle enrolls in Harvard Law School in an attempt to win back her lost love, Warner. In order for Elle to make it at Harvard she must prove to everyone, including herself, that she has what it takes. When her resolution is tested, Elle discovers what she is truly made of, surpassing her own wildest expectations and finding her inner strength and intelligence.

Legally Blonde is a lively musical romp with a touching lesson. Audiences will thoroughly enjoy this production and may even learn not to judge a book by its cover!

Performance Times

  • 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 23
  • 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 24
  • 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 25
  • 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 26
  • 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 30
  • 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 31
  • 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1
  • 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 2

Location
Patricia Corbett Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Purchasing Tickets

Tickets to Legally Blonde are $31-35 for adults, $20-24 for non-UC students and $18-22 UC students with a valid ID, with $12-$15 student rush tickets available for both of the Saturday matinees beginning at 1 p.m. on Oct. 25 and Nov. 1.

Customizable subscription packages are also available. Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online at ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice/legally-blonde-mainstage.

Parking and Directions
Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit uc.edu/parking for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit ccm.uc.edu/about/directions.

____

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Mainstage Season Production Sponsor: Macy’s

Mainstage Production Sponsor: Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC

Community Partner: ArtsWave

Legally Blonde: The Musical is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019 | Phone: 212-541-4684 | Fax: 212-397-4684 | http://www.MTIShows.com

CCM News CCM Slideshows
Senior musical theatre major Lawson Young as Elle in CCM's production of LEGALLY BLONDE, playing Oct. 23 - Nov. 2, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM’s Mainstage Series Proudly Presents ‘Legally Blonde – The Musical’

Senior Lawson Young as Elle and junior Chris Collins-Pisano as Emmett in CCM's production of LEGALLY BLONDE, playing Oct. 23 - Nov. 2, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Senior Lawson Young as Elle and junior Chris Collins-Pisano as Emmett in CCM’s production of LEGALLY BLONDE, playing Oct. 23 – Nov. 2, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM continues its 2014-15 Mainstage Series this week with the upbeat musical, Legally Blonde.

Directed and choreographed by Professor of Musical Theatre Diane Lala with musical direction by second-year graduate student Craig DaltonLegally Blonde makes its CCM debut Oct. 23 – Nov. 2 in Patricia Corbett Theater.

Based on the novel by Amanda Brown and the MGM motion picture of the same name, Legally Blonde is a modern-day coming of age tale featuring perky and lovable sorority girl Elle Woods. Elle enrolls in Harvard Law School in an attempt to win back her lost love, Warner. In order for Elle to make it at Harvard she must prove to everyone, including herself, that she has what it takes. When her resolution is tested, Elle discovers what she is truly made of, surpassing her own wildest expectations and finding her inner strength and intelligence.

Guest artist Joe Leonard provides the scenic design for this musical movie adaptation. A 1989 graduate of CCM’s Department of Theatre Design and Production, Leonard’s vision for Legally Blonde was incredibly dynamic. This result is a set in which everything moves, flips, turns and flies. “The positive energy of Elle’s story is carried through to every element of the production,” Lala explains.

Legally Blonde features 16 memorable musical numbers by the Drama Desk and Tony Award nominated composer and lyricist team of Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin, with a book by Heather Hach.

The role of Elle Woods is incredibly fun but is also very demanding. Because Elle appears in every scene of this high-energy musical, the role has been double cast and will be played by Sarah Bishop and Lawson Young, both senior musical theatre majors. Likewise, the role of Emmett will be played by senior Nathanial Irvin and junior Chris Collins-Pisano.

Legally Blonde also features two special performers who are brand new to the CCM stage. Jackson and Jilly will play the parts of Rufus and Bruiser, two of musical theatre’s most beloved dogs. Jilly is a Legally Blonde veteran, having played the part of Bruiser in Covedale Theater’s production of Legally Blonde last spring. Jackson is making his acting debut in this fun-filled production.

Legally Blonde is a lively musical romp with a touching lesson. Audiences will thoroughly enjoy this production and may even learn not to judge a book by its cover!

Read more about the production here.

CCM News

CCM Review Round-Up: ‘Les Misérables’ and ‘El Niño’

The critics can’t stop talking about CCM’s productions of Les Misérables and El Niño! Catch up with the latest “buzz” in today’s review round-up!

CCM proudly presents a new production of the iconic musical "Les Misérables," playing Feb. 27 - March 9, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM proudly presents a new production of the iconic musical “Les Misérables,” playing Feb. 27 – March 9, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

  • Rick Pender calls CCM’s new production of Les Misérables “magnificent” in his CityBeat review, concluding, “Peeled back to its raw essence, CCM’s staging of Les Misérables is powerful and memorable, one of the best musical theater productions on a Cincinnati stage this season.” Read the full review here.
  • Paige Malott reviews the production for iSPYCiNCY and observes, “Capturing the larger-than-life Les Misérables with perfection, CCM put on a better-than-Broadway performance that is guaranteed 2-4-6-0-fun.” Read the full review here.
  • In his Talkin’ Broadway review, Scott Cain explains, “Musicals presented at… CCM always feature splendidly talented student performers who rarely disappoint. Their current production, Les Misérables, is no exception and does showcase many stunning voices and meticulously detailed acting.” Read the full review here.
  • In his review for The Sappy Critic, Kirk Sheppard suggests, “I’ve seen a lot of shows in Cincinnati over the last couple of years… [and] CCM’s Les Misérables just might be the greatest production I’ve ever seen.” Read the full review here.
  • Rafael de Acha reviews the production for Seen and Heard International and writes, “Keeping the entire undertaking tightly reined in and mercifully devoid of any Broadway clichés, [Aubrey] Berg delivers a fresh and finely-wrought production.” Read the full review here.
  • Emily Begely reviews Les Misérables for UC’s News Record and concludes, “An exemplary cast, a familiar plot and simple props created an unforgettable work of art.” Read the full review here.
Earl Rivers leads the CCM Philharmonia in a rehearsal for John Adams' EL NINO. Photography by Lisa Ventre/University of Cincinnati.

Earl Rivers leads the CCM Philharmonia in a rehearsal for John Adams’ EL NINO. Photography by Lisa Ventre/University of Cincinnati.

  • Janelle Gelfand reviews CCM’s “powerful” performance of John Adams’ El Niño for the Cincinnati Enquirer, and observes, “[Earl] Rivers balanced the work’s intimate emotions against powerful ones, propelled tempos well and drew excellent playing from the orchestra.” Read her full review here.
  • Mary Ellyn Hutton reviews El Niño for ConcertoNet and writes, “John Adams’ oratorio El Niño had its regional premiere in Cincinnati March 2, and it couldn’t have been in better hands. ” Read the full review here.

Performances of Les Misérables resume this evening (Tuesday, March 4) and run through Sunday, March 9. Learn more by visiting ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice/lesmiserables.

CCM News Faculty Fanfare Student Salutes

CCM’s Mainstage Production of ‘Les Miserables’ Receives 5-Star Rating from the League of Cincinnati Theatres

CCM proudly presents a new production of the iconic musical "Les Misérables," playing Feb. 27 - March 9, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM proudly presents a new production of the iconic musical “Les Misérables,” playing Feb. 27 – March 9, 2014. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Panelists for the League of Cincinnati Theatres (LCT) have recognized CCM’s production of the long running musical classic Les Misérables with a Five Star Rating! Congratulations to everyone involved with the show!

Panelists praised the production as, “Spectacular… an outstanding and phenomenal production… Bravo for everyone involved for taking a musical I have seen multiple times and making it as fresh, exciting and powerful as the first.”

Director Aubrey Berg was praised for his “seamless” direction: “Aubrey Berg said he had waited over 20 years to direct this musical at CCM and he could not have done it more effectively, with some masterful choices.” Musical Director Steve Goers also was commended for his, “direction of these fine voices and in the outstanding orchestral accompaniment;” he did a, “wonderful job with taking a beast of a show and making it sing beautifully”.

The panelists were impressed by the entire ensemble: “the show absolutely showcased the incredible depth of CCM‘s students… the talent level continues to amaze.” Blaine Krauss, as Jean Valjean, “gave a sensitive, true portrayal of the character… his voice was moving… he should go directly to Broadway.”

Panelists also singled out Colin Kessler, as Javert, for his “outstanding” performance and “remarkable voice”, as well as Matthew Paul Hill’s portrayal of Thenardier: “hilarious in an evil and unctuous manner. He almost stole the show.”

Note: this review was based on the opening night cast. On alternate nights, the roles of Jean Valjean and Javert are also played by Julian Decker and Noah Ricketts, respectively.

Final LCT awards will be determined at the end of the season and announced at the LCT gala in the spring. You can learn more about CCM’s production of Les Misérables here.

About the League of Cincinnati Theatres
The League of Cincinnati Theatres was founded in 1999 to strengthen, nurture and promote Cincinnati’s theatre community. LCT provides its member companies and individual members with education, resources and services to enhance the quality and exposure of the theatre community in Cincinnati and increase community awareness, attendance and involvement. Learn more about the LCT here.

CCM News Faculty Fanfare Student Salutes