Thursday, February 19, 2015

ST. LOUIS: Jerry Springer the Opera

ST. LOUIS, MO . . . New Line Theatre, “the bad boy of musical theatre,” continues its 24th season of adult, alternative musical theatre, with the St. Louis premiere of the outrageous JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERA, running March 5-28, 2015, at the Washington University South Campus Theatre, 6501 Clayton Road. This show contains very adult content and language.

The New Line season continues with one of New Line’s wildest and most ambitious projects, JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERA, the smash-hit, multi-award winning musical that ran to unprecedented rave reviews and standing ovations at the National Theatre in London, after a sold-out run in London’s West End. The Sunday Times called it “a shocking, irresistibly funny masterpiece.” With music by Richard Thomas, and book and lyrics by Thomas and Stewart Lee, this is an audacious, fearless piece of theatre that brilliantly and hilariously dissects the cultural forces that have kept Jerry Springer on the air all these years, the lives of quiet desperation that explode into public view in Springer’s weirdly nonjudgmental, national confessional.

The New Line cast includes Keith Thompson  (Jerry Springer), Matt Pentecost (Jonathan Wierus), Matt Hill (Steve Wilkos); and as Jerry’s guests, Zachary Allen Farmer, Ryan Foizey, Marshall Jennings, Lindsey Jones, Taylor Pietz, Christina Rios, Anna Skidis, and Luke Steingruby; and as Jerry’s studio audience (among other things), Reynaldo Arceno, Tyler Cheatem, Joel Hackbarth, Ann Hier, Sarah Porter, Michelle Sauer, Kimi Short, and Christopher Strawhun. Scott Miller directs the show, with music direction by Jeffrey Richard Carter, scenic and lighting design by Rob Lippert, and costume design by Sarah Porter.

There will also be a Springer talk-back, free and open to the public, on Tues. March 24, at 7:00 pm in the theatre, when the New Line design and production staff will take the stage to talk about their work and answer your questions!

Originally opening in 2003, Jerry Springer the Opera ran over 600 performances in London, before touring the UK. The production won four Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical, and it was the first show ever to win all four Best Musical awards in the UK (Olivier, Evening Standard, Critics’ Circle and What’s On Stage). The first North American performance was at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and it was performed by a number of American regional theatre companies, before making its New York debut in 2008 at Carnegie Hall.

The New York Times wrote, “Will it turn out that the great American musical of the early 21st century is an opera born in Britain? A convincing case for the rights to that title was made by the celestial Jerry Springer The Opera, the notorious show from London about the transcendent within tabloid television. . . Now ‘celestial’ might seem an ill-chosen adjective for a work devoted to the raw and nasty public doings of a throng of aspiring celebrities with dirty little secrets expressed in dirty little words. But this remarkable work – which features a spectacularly inventive score – uncovers something grand within the small, squalid lives it portrays.”

ABOUT NEW LINE THEATRE
New Line Theatre is a professional company dedicated to involving the people of the St. Louis region in the exploration and creation of daring, provocative, socially and politically relevant works of musical theatre. New Line was created back in 1991 at the vanguard of a new wave of nonprofit musical theatre just starting to take hold across the country. New Line has given birth to several world premiere musicals over the years and has brought back to life several shows that were not well served by their original New York productions. Altogether, New Line has produced 72 musicals since 1991, and the company has been given its own entry in the Cambridge Guide to American Theatre. New Line receives funding from the Regional Arts Commission and the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.

TICKETS
Jerry Springer the Opera runs March 5-28, 2015, on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings, at 8:00 p.m., at the Washington University South Campus Theatre (formerly CBC High School), 6501 Clayton Road, just east of Big Bend. March 5 is a preview. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for students/seniors on Fridays and Saturdays; and $20 for adults and $15 for students/seniors on Thursdays. Tickets are on sale now through the Fox Theatre Box Office, or by calling Metrotix, at 314-534-1111. Advance tickets are not sold at the theatre box office.



HIGH SCHOOL DISCOUNT:  Any student with a valid school ID can get a $10 ticket at any performance, with the code word for that show, which will be posted on New Line's Facebook page, at  http://www.facebook.com/NewLineTheatre

New Line also offers COLLEGE FREE SEATS, ten seats put aside for every performance, free to anyone with a valid college student ID, one ticket per ID. The Free Seats will be available at the theatre box office, from 7:00 p.m. to 7:55 p.m. on performance nights only.

EDUCATORS AND MILITARY DISCOUNT:  New Line offers all currently employed educators and all active duty military personnel half price tickets on any Thursday night, with work ID or other proof of employment. Not valid in connection with other discounts or offers, available only at the door, and subject to availability. 
This show contains very adult content and adult language. For other information, visit New Line Theatre's full-service website at www.newlinetheatre.com . All programs are subject to change.

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