Tag Archives: Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park

Cincinnati Playhouse Brings the Godmother of Rock and Roll to the Stage MARIE AND ROSETTA opens March 3

pip_marie-and-rosetta-promo

Photo by Tony Arrasmith/Arrasmith & Associates.

CINCINNATI—The swinging gospel sound that influenced rock and roll comes to the Marx Theatre March 3 when Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park opens MARIE AND ROSETTA, presented by Leading Ladies. The play, which first appeared off-Broadway, runs through March 31. (Official opening night is March 8.)

A compelling stage drama, MARIE AND ROSETTA tells the life stories of gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe (a 2018 Rock-and-Roll Hall of Fame inductee) and her protégée Marie Knight. Featuring gospel songs and Tharpe’s fierce guitar playing, the play explores their musical partnership, artistic influences and the many obstacles they faced in pursuit of their dreams.

George Brant, the playwright, brings to light how Sister Rosetta Tharpe influenced the birth of the rock ‘n roll music. He says, “Although history has tended to obscure the groundbreaking work of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, MARIE AND ROSETTA celebrates her incomparable contributions to the rock ‘n’ roll.”

This play with music is an inspiring portrait of these legendary singers who, together, blended gospel music with rock ‘n’ roll and became revered crossover artists in the 1930s and ‘40s. It takes place at one of their early rehearsals, as they work to find the perfect combination of gospel and rock. Between soulful musical numbers, the singers share their own memories of childhood, family, music and faith to develop a moving performance style that praises God and entertains the masses.

“Audiences will leave inspired by the lives and music of Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Marie Knight,” says Blake Robinson, artistic director of the Playhouse. “This groundbreaking play sheds light on the role of women and gospel singers in the birth of rock and roll, and we are proud to be one of only two theatres to stage the show after its debut off-Broadway two years ago.”

Neil Pepe, the artistic director of Atlantic Theater Company, directs the Playhouse’s production of MARIE AND ROSETTA. He also directed its off-Broadway world premiere in 2016. Miche Braden plays Sister Rosetta, and Chaz Hodges is Marie Knight. Katreese Barnes is on piano, and KJ Denhert is on guitar.

MARIE AND ROSETTA explores themes of femininity, motherhood and professional ambition in the face of cultural forces, a fusion of themes that Tharpe embodied and that intrigued Brant.

This co-production with Cleveland Play House is one of only two theatres to present the off-Broadway production after its world premiere with Atlantic Theatre Company in 2016.

SPECIAL EVENTS
ArtsWave Days Free Performance
Saturday, March 3, 4 p.m.
As part of ArtsWave Days, the Playhouse offers a free community performance of MARIE AND ROSETTA. To reserve tickets, visit cincyplay.com with promo code ARTSWAVE or call the Playhouse Box Office at 513-421-3888. Limited to four tickets per household. Subject to availability. Ticket pick-up from 10 a.m. to no later than 3 p.m. on the day of show.

The Impact of Sister Rosetta: A Celebration of Gospel, Blues, Rock and Jazz
Monday, March 12, 7 – 8:30 p.m. at Music Resource Center, 3032 Woodburn Ave., Cincinnati, Ohio 45206. It is free and open to the public but registration is required. Please call the Playhouse Box Office to reserve your spot at 513-421-3888.

PERFORMANCES
Evening performances on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays start at 7:30 p.m; Fridays and Saturdays 8 p.m. and Sundays 7 p.m. Matinee performance on Saturdays start at 4pm, Sundays at 2 p.m. as well as on Wednesday, March 28 at 1 p.m. Student performance is on March 14, Wednesday at 10 a.m.

TICKETS
Prices for MARIE AND ROSETTA start at $35 depending on seat selection and performance day and are subject to change. Tickets for teens and students are $30. Student tickets are just $15 on the day of the show. Plus, Sunday is College Night, with tickets to all 7 p.m. performances just $10. In addition to calling the Box Office, tickets can also be purchased by visiting the Playhouse website at www.cincyplay.com.

ACCESS
The Playhouse is fully accessible. Large print programs and hearing enhancement receivers are available upon request.

BOX OFFICE
513-421-3888 or 800-582-3208 toll-free in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana; or 513-345-2248 – TDD access (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf).

SPONSORS
Production Sponsor is the Leading Ladies, a Playhouse program offering women who are passionate about theatre an opportunity to support a mainstage production and enjoy behind-the-scenes access with special events throughout the season. The Robert S. Marx Theatre Season is presented by Schueler Group. The Season Sponsor of New Work is The Rosenthal Foundation. Marx Theatre Season Design Sponsor is Macy’s. Artist sponsor is the Fifth Third Bank and The Geller Company is the design sponsor.

The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of more than 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign.The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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MARIE AND ROSETTA Runs March 3-31

pip_marie-and-rosetta-promoMARIE AND ROSETTA
Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park
March 3-31
Marx Theatre [Eden Park]

Directed by Neil Pepe

Celebrated for her fierce guitar playing and swinging gospel music, singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe became a veritable legend — and a 2018 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee. Throughout the 1930s and ‘40s, Sister Rosetta performed gospel in the morning and swing music at the Cotton Club at night to inevitably become a major influence on rock ‘n’ roll’s earliest icons. This play with music chronicles her first rehearsal with a young protégée, Marie Knight, as they prepare for a tour that would establish them as one of the great duet teams in musical history. Marie and Rosetta’s compelling life stories combined with roof-raising, heart-rending gospel songs set the stage for an inspiring evening at the theatre. Contains mild adult language and mature themes.

  • In preview, Sat, March 3 at 4pm & 8pm & Sun, March 4 at 2pm
  • In preview, Tue-Wed, March 6-7 at 7:30pm
  • Thu, March 8 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, March 9 at 8pm
  • Sat, March 10 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, March 11 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue, March 13 at 7:30pm
  • Thu, March 15 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, March 16 at 8pm
  • Sat, March 17 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, March 18 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue-Thu, March 20-22 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, March 23 at 8pm
  • Sat, March 24 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, March 25 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue, March 27 at 7:30pm
  • Wed, March 28 at 1pm & 7:30pm
  • Thu, March 29 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, March 30 at 8pm
  • Sat, March 31 at 4pm & 8pm

Official page |

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World Premiere of BE HERE NOW at Playhouse Feb. 9

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Photo by Tony Arrasmith/Arrasmith & Associates.

New play written by Deborah Zoe Laufer runs Feb. 9-March 11

CINCINNATI—Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park announces the world premiere of BE HERE NOW by Deborah Zoe Laufer, a play commissioned by the Playhouse about two lost souls who come together under unusual circumstances in their search for happiness. BE HERE NOW debuts in the Shelterhouse Theatre on Feb. 9, 2018 and will run until March 11, with support from The Rosenthal Foundation, Season Sponsor of New Work.

Regarding her new production, Laufer says, “In most of my plays, people are searching for something by looking outside of themselves, their families, loved ones and friends. Ultimately, the characters find what they’re looking for in each other and the simple acts of being together… with the people who really matter to them.”

The play centers on woefully underemployed Bari, who is a humorous misanthrope, and brilliant and loveable Mike, who manages his own demons and makes art out of garbage.

Bari lives in a small town and aspires to complete her Ph.D. dissertation on nihilism (the belief that nothing matters). Her cheerful workmates try to perk her up but she rejects their offer. Bari decides to take on a new path when she meets Mike, an unexpected suitor. BE HERE NOW asks what we are willing to do for love and happiness and to create meaning in our lives.

Playhouse artistic director Blake Robinson says of Laufer, “I think Deb has an ear for how people really speak. Hers is a fresh and insightful voice.”

In 2013, the world premiere of Deborah’s play LEVELING UP was produced by the Playhouse. When asked how BE HERE NOW is similar or different to her previous plays, she says, “I think BE HERE NOW is very much my play. Hopefully, it is also funny and sad. Hopefully, it asks more questions than it answers. Hopefully, they will be surprised. Hopefully, they’ll see the world around them just a tiny bit differently. Hopefully, they’ll walk away with something to chew on and maybe argue on the way home. I like it when people argue.”

SPECIAL EVENT
Fundamentals of Playwriting with Deborah Zoe Laufer
Saturday, Feb. 10, 10 a.m. – noon at the Playhouse
BE HERE NOW playwright Deborah Zoe Laufer introduces the world of writing for the stage. Learn how to build the foundation of a story by creating complex characters, writing memorable dialogue and crafting a compelling plot. Adults and teens ages 16 and up with all skill levels are welcome! Cost is $50 per person, and does not include a ticket to the show.

TICKETS
Prices for BE HERE NOW start at $35 depending on seat selection and performance day and are subject to change. Tickets for teens and students are $30. Student tickets are just $15 on the day of the show. Plus, Sunday is College Night, with tickets to all 7 p.m. performances just $10. In addition to calling the Box Office, tickets can also be purchased by visiting the Playhouse website at www.cincyplay.com.

ACCESS
The Playhouse is fully accessible. Large print programs and hearing enhancement receivers are available upon request.

BOX OFFICE
513-421-3888 or 800-582-3208 toll-free in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana; or 513-345-2248 – TDD access (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf).

SPONSORS
Production Sponsor is the Bartlett & Co. The Shelterhouse Theatre Season is presented by Heidelberg Distributing Company. The Season Sponsor of New Work is The Rosenthal Foundation. Shelterhouse Theatre Season Design Sponsor is the Allan Berliant and Jennie Rosenthal Berliant Family Fund. Additional Support is provided by The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. Media sponsor is 91.7 WVXU. BE HERE NOW was commissioned through the Playhouse’s Jerome Fey Endowment.

The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of more than 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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BE HERE NOW Runs Feb. 9-March 11

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Photo by Tony Arrasmith/Arrasmith & Associates.

BE HERE NOW
Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park
Feb. 9-March 11
Shelterhouse Theater [Eden Park]

Directed by Portia Krieger

Two lost souls come together under most unusual circumstances in this deeply insightful and charmingly funny world premiere. Surrounded by painfully cheerful co-workers, Bari is deeply cynical and woefully underemployed working at a small-town fulfillment center. After an unexpected and unexplainable turn of events, Bari finds herself on an enlightening new path. When she meets Mike, a man who makes art out of garbage, it’s Bari’s turn to pull another out of the darkness. Be Here Now asks what we are willing to do for love and happiness and to create meaning in our lives. Advisory: Appropriate for adults and older teenage audiences. This searching story about existential happiness contains adult language, sexual content and other mature themes that are handled with both humor and honesty.

  • In preview Fri-Sat, Feb. 9-10 at 8pm and Sun, Feb. 11 at 7pm
  • In preview, Tue-Wed, Feb. 13-14 at 7:30pm
  • Thu, Feb. 15 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, Feb. 16 at 8pm
  • Sat, Feb. 17 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, Feb. 18 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue-Thu, Feb. 20-22 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, Feb. 23 at 8pm
  • Sat, Feb. 24 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, Feb. 25 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue-Thu, Feb. 27-March 1 at 7:30pm
  • Sat, March 3 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, March 4 at 2pm & 7pm
  • Tue, March 6 at 7:30pm
  • Wed, March 7 at 1pm & 7:30pm
  • Thu, March 8 at 7:30pm
  • Fri, March 9 at 8pm
  • Sat, March 10 at 4pm & 8pm
  • Sun, March 11 at 2pm

Official page |

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Introduce Your Children to the Arts with Cincinnati Playhouse Summer Camps and Performance Academy

PIP_Kids4

Photo by Mikki Schaffner.

CINCINNATI—Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park’s season of one-week Summer Camps and three-week Performance Academy programs are now on sale at cincyplay.com for 2018. The one-week camps introduce children grades 1 to 10 to the world of art using unique, book-based themes. The three-week Performance Academy enables children in grades 3 to 12 to experience the production of a play from beginning to end. No acting experience is required.

“Your children don’t need to be actors to learn and have fun at our summer camps and performance academy,” says Daunielle Rasmussen, director of education and community engagement. “Each camp introduces or furthers your child’s appreciation of the arts. They also build confidence and encourage creativity.”

The programs focus on developing individual and collective skills in a fun, supportive, process-based environment. The children are grouped by age, with a 10:1 student-to-teacher ratio to provide quality appropriate instruction. The courses are taught by local professional artists and educators.

Each week of summer camp is based on the works of famous authors including J.K. Rowling, Dr. Seuss, Stan Lee and C.S. Lewis. At the end of the camp, children will participate in a 10-minute performance piece for friends and family.

Theme camps available are:

TIME TRAVEL WITH MADELEINE L’ENGLE on June 4-8, 2018
Believing takes practice! Be transported through time and space as we explore the classic tale of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time. Performers will travel to new and distant lands, pitting good against evil as they write their own scenes and create worlds through theatre crafts. Your children will learn Playwriting, Theatre Crafts, Improvisation and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, June 8, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on Wednesday, May 30, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE WIZARDING WORLD OF J.K. ROWLING on June 11–15, 2018
Accio imagination! Enter the extraordinary world of J.K Rowling where wizards duel and magical creatures roam. Performers will be sorted into houses, learn the dueling arts, create potions and design their own wizarding school attire. Your children will learn Acting, Theatre Crafts, Stage Combat and Improvisation. Showcase Performance on Friday, June 15, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 6, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE TOPSY TURVY WORLD OF DR. SEUSS on June 18-22, 2018
Oh, the things you can think! How many thoughts can you think at drama camp? Enter the zany world of Dr. Seuss in this exciting week of puppet-making and physical comedy during which performers will invent characters and enact beloved stories from Dr. Seuss. Your children will learn Physical Comedy, Puppetry, Improvisation and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, June 22, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 6, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE MAGICAL MUSICAL THEATRE OF ROALD DAHL on June 25-29, 2018
What you imagine can sometimes come true! The exciting stories of Roald Dahl have been turned into some of the most beloved and popular musicals on Broadway. In addition to learning introductory dance, singing and acting, groups will learn selections from Matilda, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach! Your children will learn Singing, Dancing and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, June 29, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 13, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE FANTASTICAL KINGDOMS OF C.S. LEWIS on July 9-13, 2018
Have you dreamed of magic such as this? Travel to the fantastical realms of C.S. Lewis in this week-long adventure where performers develop magical creatures who join in on the valiant battle to protect the kingdom. Your children will learn Stage Combat, Character Creation, Improvisation and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, July 13, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 27, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE MARVELOUS ADVENTURES OF STAN LEE on July 16-20, 2018
Avengers assemble! We are calling all superheroes, villains and masterminds to bring to life the marvelous world of comic book genius Stan Lee. Performers will create a theme song and sound effects to accompany epic fights between the superheroes and villains. Your children will learnSound Design, Stage Combat, Improvisation and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, July 20, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on July 11, 2018. Tuition: $295

THE TRAGIC TALES OF LEMONY SNICKET on July 23-27, 2018
What might seem to be a series of unfortunate events may, in fact, be the first steps of a journey. Join us as we discover, design and create the mysterious world of Lemony Snicket. Performers will develop exciting characters that will entice the imagination. Your children will learn Design Bootcamp, Character Creation, Improvisation and Acting. Showcase Performance on Friday, July 27, at 4 p.m. Deadline for registration on July 11, 2018. Tuition: $295

Performance Academy is for incoming 3rd to 12th graders who want to experience the production of a play from beginning to end. Participants, organized by age, will take technique and special skills classes as well as rehearse a play that will be performed for friends and family before the camp ends.

Performance Academy courses available are:

PETER PAN on June 11-29, 2018
Incoming 3rd to 12th grade
Think happy thoughts and let your imagination take flight! This three-week Performance Academy camp will help you gain a deeper understanding of blocking and rehearsal practices while putting together a non-musical production of Peter Pan! Your children will learn Acting, Improvisation, Stage Combat, Physical Comedy and Puppetry. Performance on June 30, at 6 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 6, 2018. Tuition: $995

MYTHS & MONSTERS on July 9-27, 2018
Incoming 7th to 12th grade
Delve into the world of heroes, mystical beings and magical creatures! Tap into the stuff of legends to write, devise and perform a play from scratch in this three-week Performance Academy camp! Your children will learn Devised Acting, Ensemble-based Movement, Playwriting, Sound Effects Design, Stage Combat, Design Bootcamp, Character Creation and Improvisation. Performance on July 27, at 5:30 p.m. Deadline for registration on June 27, 2018. Tuition: $995

“The Playhouse believes everyone has a voice,” says Blake Robison, artistic director. “The camps and Performance Academy are designed to build confidence, strengthen communication skills and develop a sense of ensemble and community.”

All Summer Camp and Performance Academy programs will be offered at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, 962 Mt. Adams Circle, Cincinnati, OH 45202. To register, visit cincyplay.com, or call 513-421-3888. If participants register before Feb. 28, they receive an early registration discount of $50 off each camp program.

The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of more than 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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