CCM’s Mainstage Series Continues With a Joyous Stage Adaptation of ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ Oct. 31 – Nov. 3

Senior Musical Theatre major Max Clayton is Don Lockwood in CCM's Mainstage Series production of 'Singin' in the Rain,' running Oct. 31 – Nov. 3 in Corbett Auditorium.

Senior Musical Theatre major Max Clayton is Don Lockwood in CCM’s Mainstage Series production of ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ running Oct. 31 – Nov. 3 in Corbett Auditorium.

CCM brings one of Hollywood’s most-loved musicals to life with a graceful stage adaptation of Singin’ in the Rain, running Oct. 31 through Nov. 3 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.

Based on the 1952 American musical comedy film of the same name, Singin’ in the Rain offers a lighthearted depiction of Hollywood during the transition from silent films to “talkies.” The story centers on popular silent film star Don Lockwood (originally portrayed by Gene Kelly, who also choreographed and co-directed the classic film), his shallow leading lady Lina Lamont, his sidekick Cosmo Brown and aspiring actress Kathy Selden.

CCM Professor of Musical Theatre and resident choreographer Diane Lala directs this production, which she describes as a “wonderful revisiting of a true classic.” The recipient of the 2012 Big Easy Theater Award for Best Choreography and the 2011 Big Easy Theatre Award for Best Director, Lala also collaborates with Adjunct Assistant Professor of Musical Theatre/Dance Patti James on the choreography of this dance-filled production, which she promises will showcase a wide variety of different dance forms, from ballet to tap and beyond.

Graduate student Ryan Sigurdson provides musical direction under the supervision of Associate Professor of Musical Theatre Roger Grodsky. With a glorious score by Nacio Herb Brown and lyrics by Arthur Freed, standards such as “Good Morning,” “Make ‘em Laugh,” “You Are My Lucky Star” and the legendary “Singin’ in the Rain” will have audience members leaving the theater humming.

Of course it wouldn’t be Singin’ in the Rain without buckets of rain, silent films and “talkies” from the original movie. Before proposing this production, Lala approached CCM’s Department of Theatre Design and Production and Division of Electronic Media to ensure that her vision for the show was possible. “For a show like this to be able to happen, it takes a village,” Lala explains. With scenic design by Mark Halpin, technical direction by Steve Miller, multimedia expertise of Electronic Media Professors Kevin Burke and Lakshmi Tirumala and student video director Sam Pennybacker, this production has provided ample opportunities for interdepartmental and interdisciplinary collaboration. This production of Singin’ in the Rain even involved Professor of Drama and resident Fight Master k. Jenny Jones, who choreographed the fighting and stage combat for one of the silent movies featured in the show. The result is a live performance that will be filled with films, flashbacks and falling rain.

CCM News

CCM Slideshows: The Threepenny Opera

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

CCM proudly presents The Threepenny Opera, running tonight, March 1, through Sunday, March 10, in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater. Tickets are on sale now. This production contains mature subject matter.

Learn more The Threepenny Opera here.

“[Stage Director Robin] Guarino fearlessly goes back to the musical satire’s socio-political roots in 1920s Berlin,” Jackie Demaline writes in her review for the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Everything about The Threepenny Opera carries out Guarino’s vision, as the cast prowl scenic designer John Arnone’s industrial set of catwalks, with the small orchestra (in costume) perched at the top. Musical director Roger Grodsky as always asks much and gets all from singers and musicians.”

Read Demaline’s full review here.

CCM News CCM Slideshows

A New Sneak Peek at the Scenic Design of ‘The Threepenny Opera’

Assistant to the Scenic Designer Alexandra Kuntz provides these previews of 'The Threepenny Opera.'

Assistant to the Scenic Designer Alexandra Kuntz provides these previews of ‘The Threepenny Opera.’

CCM’s acclaimed Mainstage Series resumes this week with Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht’s epic musical The Threepenny Opera. Today, we are happy to provide a preview of the show’s set, courtesy of Alexandra Kuntz, a sophomore in CCM’s Scenic Design program and Assistant to Guest Scenic Designer John Arnone on this production.

Learn more about this dynamic new production, which features set designs by Tony Award-winner John Arnone.

“Set in the mid-19th century, Macheath (otherwise known as ‘Mack the Knife’) runs the town with his rag tag band of ruffians and gets what he wants,” Kuntz explains. “His latest want just happens to be Polly Peachum, daughter of the Beggar’s Lord of London (Johnathan Jeremiah Peachum), who doesn’t take too kindly to Mack the Knife’s interest in his daughter. Doing anything to keep them apart, Peachum uses broads, bribes and blackmails to get Mack out of the picture, while Macheath’s life hangs in the balance.”

This production contains mature subject matter.

CCM News

The Epic Theatre of CCM’s ‘The Threepenny Opera’

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM’s year-long Kurt Weill Festival resumes this month with a dynamic new production of the iconic musical The Threepenny Opera. Composed by Kurt Weill with book and lyrics by dramatist Bertolt Brecht (adapted into English by Marc Blitzstein), The Threepenny Opera weaves the riveting tale of notorious bandit and womanizer Macheath (“Mack the Knife”) and his seedy companions in London’s underworld. Weill’s innovative score invented a new form of musical theatre, leading the way for such shows as Chicago and Cabaret.

CCM’s Mainstage Series production of this jazz-infused musical is directed by Robin Guarino, with musical direction by Roger Grodsky, choreography by Patti James and scenic designs by Tony Award-winning guest artist John Arnone. The Threepenny Opera runs Thursday, Feb. 28, through Sunday, March 10, in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater. Tickets are on sale now. This production contains mature subject matter.

CCM News

CCM Presents the Iconic Musical ‘The Threepenny Opera’ Feb. 28 – March 10

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Someone sneaking ’round the corner. Is the someone Mack the Knife? Find out for yourself when CCM presents The Threepenny Opera, Feb. 28 through March 10, 2013!

With The Threepenny Opera, composer Kurt Weill and playwright Bertolt Brecht weave the riveting story of notorious bandit and womanizer MacHeath (“Mack the Knife”) and his seedy companions in London’s underworld, inventing a new form of musical theatre in the process!

Influencing shows like Chicago and Cabaret, this jazz-infused musical comes to life in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater for two consecutive weekends courtesy of CCM’s stars of tomorrow!

Directed by Robin Guarino, with musical direction by Roger Grodsky, choreography by Patti James and set designs by Tony Award-winning guest artist John ArnoneThe Threepenny Opera is the must-see theatre event of the year! Learn more here.

This production contains mature subject matter.

CCM News

CCM Jazz and Musical Theatre Join Forces for Duke Ellington’s ‘Nutcracker Suite’

CCM’s Jazz Ensemble performed with Musical Theatre dancers at CCM’s 2011 Moveable Feast benefit event. Photography by Dottie Stover.

CCM presents a special seasonal treat at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 2, as the departments of Jazz Studies and Musical Theatre unite to present Duke Ellington’s Nutcracker Suite for one night only in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.

One of the most influential jazz musicians of the 20th century, Duke Ellington recorded The Nutcracker Suite for the Columbia record label in 1960. The album featured jazz interpretations of well-known melodies by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, arranged by Ellington and Billy Strayhorn.

Under the musical direction of Scott Belck and Dominic Marino, dancers from CCM’s Musical Theatre program will join the Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Lab Band to transform The Nutcracker Suite’s romantic orchestrations into jumping jazz melodies, including “Toot Toot Tootie Toot (Dance of the Reed-Pipes),” “Peanut Brittle Brigade” and “Sugar Rum Cherry (Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy).” Featuring choreography by Diane Lala, a classical ballet becomes cool-cat jazz, infused with Vegas glitz, Hollywood glamour and a little New York razzmatazz.

CCM News

CCM’s ‘Chess’ Receives Four League of Cincinnati Theater Nominations

"Chess" runs Oct. 25 - 28 in UC's Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.

“Chess” runs Oct. 25 – 28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.
Tickets on sale now! Visit ccm.uc.edu for more information. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM’s production of Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus and Tim Rice’s Chess has earned four nominations from the League of Cincinnati Theatres (LCT)! The LCT also distinguished the rock musical as a recommended production: Outstanding Production (musical), Ensemble, Lead Actor (Julian Decker) and Lead Actress (Aubrey Ireland). Congratulations to the entire creative team!

Loosely based on the lives of chess grandmasters Bobby Fischer and Anatoly Karpov, Chess involves a romantic triangle between two top players (an American and a Russian) and the woman who manages one and falls in love with the other.

CCM News Student Salutes

CCM’s ‘Chess’ Features ‘Great Singing, Great Dancing, Jaw-Dropping Costuming, Superb Orchestral Support, Sharp Techno Scenic Design’ Raves Enquirer

"Chess" runs Oct. 25 - 28 in UC's Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.

“Chess” runs Oct. 25 – 28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.
Tickets on sale now! Visit ccm.uc.edu for more information. Photography by Mark Lyons.

In her review of Chess for the Cincinnati Enquirer, Jackie Demaline writes, “It’s easy to be swept up in the spectacle conjured by director Aubrey Berg – great singing, great dancing, jaw-dropping costuming, superb orchestral support (led by Stephen Goers), sharp techno scenic design (by Mark Halpin and Alan Hanson).”

Chess runs through this Sunday, Oct. 28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium. Tickets are still available by calling 513-556-4183, visiting CCM’s E-Box Office here!

Read more of Demaline’s review after the jump.

CCM News

CityBeat’s Stage Door Blog Reviews ‘Chess’

"Chess" runs Oct. 25 - 28 in UC's Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.

“Chess” runs Oct. 25 – 28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium. Photography by Mark Lyons.
Tickets on sale now! Visit ccm.uc.edu for more information. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Theatre critic Rick Pender reviews Chess in today’s CityBeat Stage Door blog: “The story is set in Bangkok and Budapest during a mid-1970s world chess championship — and it’s driven by gamesmanship between nations, between lovers and, of course, between chess players. I saw the opening on Thursday, and it’s a BIG show with a gigantic cast. Several leading roles are double cast (with more juniors than seniors, in fact, which bodes well for CCM productions for this season and next). In particular, Matthew Paul Hill, playing the Russian grand master Anatoly, lifted the roof of Corbett Auditorium with his powerful baritone voice singing the stirring ‘Anthem,’ the Act 1 finale.”

Read more here. 

Chess tickets are still available by calling 513-556-4183, visiting CCM’s E-Box Office here!

Directed by Aubrey Berg with musical direction by Stephen Goers, choreography by Diane Lala, scenic design by Mark Halpin and costumes by Rebecca SenskeChess runs Oct. 25-28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.

CCM News

CCM Slideshows: Chess

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Featuring music by ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson with lyrics by Tim Rice, CCM’s Mainstage Series continues with the must-see musical Chess, running Oct. 25-28 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.

CityBeat’s Rick Pender writes, “Our local theater scene is enhanced considerably by works presented on the stages at universities: Tonight through Sunday, CCM’s esteemed musical theater program is offering CHESS, with music by ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson. The story is set in Bangkok and Budapest during a 1972 chess championship — which is about conflict between nations, between lovers and, of course, between chess players. Director Aubrey Berg says, “The action plays out in a world of spies, counter-agents and superpowers vying for supremacy.”

Tickets are still available for this acclaimed rock musical!

Learn more at http://ccm.uc.edu.

Check out the original music video for “One Night in Bangkok” from the 1984 Chess concept album below:

CCM News CCM Slideshows