By Lynn Venhaus
Managing Editor
Heroes and villains, and every shade of gray in between are featured on local stages this weekend. And some are in desperate need of love – and a hug!
Nicky Collett Photo by Aaron JostMean Girl Day is fast approaching (Oct. 3), and we have the classic big bad green one – the Wicked Witch of the West, who terrorizes munchkins, the land of Oz and Dorothy – and Toto, too in Christ Memorial Production’s “The Wizard of Oz” with a cast of 100.+
We have a deal with the devil, presented Midnight Company-style, with two one-acts including one that’s part of Faustival, a celebration of that evil liaison between the good doctor and Satan.

Did Lee Harvey Oswald assassinate President Kennedy? Tesseract Theatre Company explores Oswald’s relationship with his mother in “Mama’s Boy.”
More wicked this way comes in Mother Nature, when the great floods of 1993 wreak havoc on a small river town in southern Illinois in the musical tale of hope and survival,“The Flood,” presented by folks who lived through it, the Monroe Actors Stage Company.
Dealing with adversity is the poster boy, Job, the one from the Bible. Only Neil Simon has updated it for modern times in “God’s Favorite.” Laughter ensues in a joint venture between the Alton Little Theater and Curtain’s Up Theater.
The once-frightening Phantom of the Opera returns in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sequel, “Love Never Dies,” now playing at the Fox Theatre on its first North American tour, this time he’s in Coney Island.
That’s in New York, New York – and that’s where you’ll find our plucky newsboys saving their jobs and the world in Disney’s “Newsies” at Looking Glass Playhouse.”
More all-American characters appear in the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic “Oklahoma!” now playing at Stages St. Louis, showing that the farmers and cowmen can be friends.
Friendship is celebrated, along with family and cultural heritage in “Crowns” a gospel musical at The Black Rep, last chance to see it.
And then there are the icons. South American folk hero Eva Peron is immortalized in Webber’s “Evita,” now playing at The Rep. Crooner Bobby Darin is remembered in “Darin” Bobby’s Biggest Hits” at the Playhouse at Westport.
And Robert Dubac provides gales of laughter pointing out the idiocy of modern society in “The Book of Moron,” now playing at The Playhouse at Westport.
Happy Fall, y’all! And Go See a Play!
“An Apology for the Course and Outcome of Certain Events Delivered by Doctor John Faustus” and “The Hunchback Variations” (Two One-Acts by Mickle Maher)
Midnight Theatre Company
Sept. 20 – 29
Thursdays at 7 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m.
The Monocle, 4510 Manchesterwww.midnightcompany.com
What It’s About: “Apology/Faustus” finds Dr. John Faustus (Hanrahan) in some room, at some time, apologizing to a random group of people (the audience) for not standing up against evil in his lifetime, as personified by Mephistopheles (Wassilak.)
“The Hunchback Variations” presents a series of variations on a panel discussion between The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Wassilak) and Ludwig Van Beethoven (Hanrahan) in which the two talk about their attempts to create a mysterious sound —  the legendary, elusive sound effect of Anton Chekhov’s, described twice in the original production of “The Cherry Orchard.”
Starring: Joe Hanrahan, David Wassilak
Of Note: These shows are part of FAUSTival, an artistic collaborations among five St. Louis theatre companies – ERA, Theatre Nuevo, SATE, the Post-Romantics and Midnight – from August through December, each company presenting an adaptation of the Faust myth.  Festival passes and more info at FAUSTival.org.
“The Book of Moron”
The Playhouse at Westport Plaza
Sept. 13 – 23
www.westportstl.com
What It’s About:  Robert Dubac’s newest Off-Broadway hit “The Book of Moron” has been described as one of the most hilarious, intelligent and scorching satirical attacks on idiocracy since Mark Twain. Having been brainwashed by a culture that worships the Kardashians over character, delusion over truth, and selfies over self-effacement, Dubac begins his journey with a simple question: Who am I? What do I believe? What’s the point?
Okay, that’s three questions but suffice to say, he has no answers. Just voices. Inner voices who come to life with precision and wit. One by one they pull him into a hysterical alternative universe of critical thought in search of the bigger picture. It’s a head trip on a banana peel.”
“Crowns: The Gospel Musical”The Black Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Sept. 5 – 23
Edison Theatre at Washington University
Box Office: (314) 534-3807
www.blackrep.org
What It’s About: Crowns refers to hats worn by black women. Hats become a springboard for an exploration of black history and identity as seen through the eyes of a young black woman who has come down South to stay with her aunt after her brother is killed in Brooklyn.
Hats are everywhere, in exquisite variety, and the characters use the hats to tell tales about everything from the etiquette of hats to their historical and contemporary social functions.
Director: Linda Kennedy
Cast: Anita Jackson leads the cast as Mother Shaw, with Maureen Williams as Wanda, Amber Rose as Velma, Leah Stewart as Mabel, Eleanor Humphrey as Jeannette, Myke Andrews as The Man and Tyler White as Yolanda.
Of Note: Director Linda Kennedy says: “The mothers and grandmothers, women of the church, were the glue that held us all together. They helped to raise us and helped make us accountable for our actions. We feared them then but are so grateful to them now. One of the greatest gifts a child can receive is the opportunity to sit and listen to and learn from an elder.” Rounding out the behind the scenes team will be the stage manager, Tracy D. Holliway-Wiggins, set designer, Dunsi Dai, lighting by Joe Clapper, and costumes by Daryl Harris.
“Darin: Bobby’s Biggest Hits”Sept. 26 – 30
The Playhouse at Westport
Tickets: MetroTix.com or 314-534-1111
www.
What It’s About: Back by popular demand, Artists Lounge Live presents a Bobby Darin tribute starring Christopher Kale Jones.
Jones, a PBS retro-rocker (“Under the Streetlamp”) and “Jersey Boys” star who played Frankie Valli on the first national tour, and in L.A. and San Francisco companies, embodies the dazzling versatility of Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Bobby Darin. Jones tenderly recounts Darin’s story of life lived in the spotlight and lost too soon. Songs featured in the show include “Dream Lover,” “Mack the Knife,” and “Beyond the Sea.”
“Evita”The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Sept. 5 – 30
www.repstl.org
What It’s About:  The incandescent Eva Perón’s rise from poverty to power electrified the world – and made her an iconic political celebrity. Winner of seven Tony Awards, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s tour-de-force musical revels in the glamour, charisma and controversy that defined the First Lady of Argentina. With its unforgettable anthem “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” and kaleidoscope of sights and sounds, “Evita” dazzles with pure passion.
Director: Rob Ruggiero, with music direction by Charlie Alterman and choreography by Gustavo Zajac.
Cast: Michelle Aravena (Eva Perón), Pepe Nufrio (Che), Sean MacLaughlin (Juan Perón), Nicolas Dávila (Augstín Magaldi/Ensemble), Shea Gomez (Perón’s Mistress/Ensemble).
Ensemble: Maria Bilbao, Nathaniel Burich, Ben Chavez, Samuel Druhora, Carmen Garcia, Esmeralda Garza, Samantha Gershman, Julie Hanson, Keith Hines, Jose Luaces, Ben Nordstrom, Waldemar Quinones-Villanueva, April Strelinger and Tim Wessel.
Eric Woolsey Photo
“The Flood”Monroe Actors Stage Company
September 20 – 23, 27 – 30
Thursday – Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
Historic Capitol Theatre
202 South Main Street, Waterloo, IL 62208
Box Office: 618-939-7469
www.masctheatre.org
What It’s About: As the Mississippi River waters rise, the small town of Meyerville struggles with preparing for the worst. This creative and dramatic musical was written by Peter Mills and Cara Reichel after they visited the town of Valmeyer, Ill., following the 1993 floods. They interviewed Monroe County citizens and were intrigued by the citizens’ decision to rebuild to higher ground. Their adaptation of the story is based on the fictional town of Meyerville and members of its village.
Director: Amber Dillard, with Musical Director Marcia Braswell
Of Note: MASC and Show Sponsor George Obernagel observe the 25th Anniversary of the Great Mississippi Flood of 1993 with their production of “The Flood.” The show has been named an official event of the Illinois State Bicentennial.
House opens one half hour before curtain; ticket booth opens one hour before curtain. The theatre is only accessible by a staircase.
“God’s Favorite”
Alton Little Theater and Curtain’s Up Theater
Sept. 14 – 23
Box Office 618-462-3205www.altonlittletheater.org
What It’s About: Neil Simon’s very funny show is loosely based on the Biblical Book of Job. A (rare) devout multimillionaire whose faith is tested encounters every malady and yet stands firm while real estate collapses around him. This is often called Simon’s most imaginative play.
Director:
Cast: Joe Benjamin, Howard Bell; Ben Benjamin,  Anthony Tuzzo; Sarah Benjamin, Christy Luster; Rose Benjamin, Carol Hodson; David Benjamin, Brant McCance; Mady, Sarah Chapman-Wiser; Morris, Vince Ojeda; and Sidney Lipton, Aaron Mermelstein.
Of Note: Alton Little Theatre presented this play 20 years ago and this is a return engagement.
“Love Never Dies”

The Fox Theatre, 527 N. Grand
Sept. 18 – 30www.fabulousfox.com
Tickets: www.MetroTix.com or 314-534-1111 or Fox Box Office
What It’s About: Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical is a sequel to the mega-hit “The Phantom of the Opera,” and takes place 10 years after the Phantom’s disappearance from the Paris Opera House. It is 1907 and he has escaped to a new life in New York, running a freak show vaudeville act at Coney Island. His music soars there, but he still yearns for his musical protégé and one true love, Christine Daae. Now a world-class soprano, she arrives in New York for a singing engagement that will hopefully get her now-jerk of a husband, Raoul, out of gambling debt. Lo and behold, the Phantom lures her to sing in his show. She has her young son Gustave, age 10, in tow. Is triumph or tragedy on the horizon?
Director: Simon Phillips
Starring: Bronson Norris Murphy as The Phantom, Meghan Picerno as Christine, Sean Thompson as Raoul, Mary Michael Patterson as Meg, Karen Mason as Madame Giry, and Jake Heston Miller and Christian Harmston alternating as Gustave.
Of Note: The show is the reworked Australia production of 2011, after the inaugural London West End musical opened in 2010 to mostly mixed reviews. It has yet to play Broadway but is now on its first North American tour.
“Mama’s Boy”Tesseract Theatre Company
Sept. 21 – 30
Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
.Zack, 3224 Locust, St. Louiswww.tesseracttheatre.org
Tickets: MetroTix.com
What It’s About: A new play by Rob Urbinati is the riveting story of Lee Harvey Oswald and his complex relationship with his overbearing mother Marguerite. “Mama’s Boy” follows Marguerite’s reckless attempts to reunite her family, from Lee’s return to the U.S. from Russia, through the assassination of Kennedy, to her son’s own murder and her defense of his innocence in the months that follow. A fascinating examination of family dynamics and obsessive maternal devotion played out in the shadow of history.
Director: Bradley Schwartz
Starring: Carly Uding, Jeremy Goldmeier, Brandon Atkins
Of Note: Playwright Rob Urbinati is in town the first weekend to see the show.
“Newsies”Looking Glass Playhouse
Sept. 20 – 23, 27-30
Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.
Looking Glass Playhouse
Lebanon, Ill.www.lookingglassplayhouse.com
What It’s About: Disney’s Newsies tells the rousing tale of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a band of teenaged ‘newsies.’ When titans of publishing raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack rallies newsies from across the city to strike against the unfair conditions and fight for what’s right.
Based on the 1992 motion picture and inspired by a true story, “Newsies” features a Tony Award-winning score by Alan Menken (Little Shop of Horrors, Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (Kinky Boots). Featuring the now classic songs “Carrying the Banner,” “Seize the Day,” and “Santa Fe,” Newsies is packed with non-stop thrills and a timeless message that is perfect for the whole family.
Director: Jason Johnson
Of Note: Looking Glass Playhouse is celebrating its 45th season.
“Oklahoma!”Stages St. Louis
Sept. 7 – Oct. 7
Robert G. Reim Theatre
Kirkwood Community Center, 111 South Geyer Road
www.stagesstlouis.org
What It’s About: Romance, conflict, comedy and colorful characters set in 1906 in the Oklahoma territory.
Director: Michael Hamilton
Starring: Zoe Vonder Haar as Aunt Eller, John Flack as Andrew Carnes, Leah Berry as Bertie Cummings and
Of Note: “Oh, what a beautiful musical! Rodgers and Hammerstein’s timeless first collaboration was, in many ways, their most innovative. And while OKLAHOMA! completely changed the face of American musical theatre 75 years ago, it remains as fresh and vital today as it was then with its loving celebration of the American spirit. A stunning blend of drama, music, and dance, the exhilarating Rodgers and Hammerstein score contains such classics as “People Will Say We’re In Love,” “The Surrey With The Fringe On Top,” “Kansas City,” “I Cain’t Say No,” and the pulsating title tune, “Oklahoma!” A gold standard that set the bar for all great musicals that came after it.
Peter Wochniak Photo
“The Wizard of Oz”Christ Memorial Productions
Sept. 14 – 23
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., Sundays at 2:30 p.m.
Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, 5252 S. Lindberghwww.CMPShows.org
314-631-0304
What It’s About: L. Frank Baum’s classic tale, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, background music by Herbert Stothart, dance and vocal arrangements by Peter Howard, orchestration by Larry Wilcox. It is adapted by John Kane for the Royal Shakespeare Company, and based upon the classic MGM motion picture owned by Turner Entertainment Company.
Dorothy Gale of Kansas journeys to the Land of Oz, where she encounters the Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, and is besieged by the Wicked Witch of the West, all with her beloved Toto by her side. Will she make it back home to Auntie Em and Uncle Henry with The Wizard’s help?
Cast: Grace Wilkinson – Dorothy, Jennifer Kerner – Aunt Em / Chorus, Kathryn Nestor Klein – Glinda / Chorus, Michael Klein – Uncle Henry / Winkie / Chorus, Ray Martin – Tinman / Hickory, Nathan Gallop – Scarecrow / Hunk, John Jauss – Lion / Zeke, Nicky Collett – Wicked Witch of the West / Miss Gulch, Keith Poppitz – Wizard / Professor / Chorus
Of Note: The cast has more than 100 members. If you are interested in a special Sensory Friendly performance on Thursday, Sept. 20. please email [email protected] for details.
Photo by Aaron Jost
Feature Image of “Crowns” by Phillip Hamer
 
 
 
 

The St. Louis arts community has teamed up to promote voter awareness and registration through the “Dance the Vote” campaign. The event will take place on Saturday, Oct. 6, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Missouri History Museum’s MacDermott Grand Hall in Forest Park, with a free Michael Jackson community dance piece to be taught at 1 p.m. on the outdoor steps
This project brings together local artists who seek to make a difference during this election season by getting people registered to vote before the Oct. 10 Missouri voter registration deadline for the upcoming Nov. 6 General Election, and committed to voting on election day.
The “Dance to Vote” campaign raises public awareness on the themes of voting and civic
engagement featuring local choreographers and dancers from Ashleyliane Dance Company,
Karlovsky and Company Dance, Beyond Measure Dance Theater, SkyStone Contemporary Ballet,
Washington University Dance Theatre, Imagine Dance Project, Las Rumberas, Madco 2, KYPEKuumba Youth Performance Ensemble, Better Family Life and more.

Joining the lineup of various dance companies will be spoken word artists, poets and singers
including Pam Garvey, Susan Spit-Fire Lively, Roseann Weiss, John Blair, MK Stallings, Ana
Jennings, Sahara “Sista Sols” Scott, and Kim Furlow, among others. Voter registration will be
provided at the event in partnership with St. Louis Voter Registration Group.
The formal program in the Missouri History Museum’s MacDermott Grand Hall at 2 p.m. will be
preceded by a free community dance piece to music by Michael Jackson to be taught at 1 p.m. on
the steps of the Museum.
“The Missouri History Museum is thrilled to be a part of this effort to raise citizen awareness
and get people to the polls. The history of our region and country is made up of choices that
were made at the polls, as well as the struggle to be included in those choices,” said Emily
Underwood director of community programs for the Missouri Historical Society. “Regardless of which candidates you support, voting is an important way to play a part in the continuing story
of our community.”
The event will also offer free ice cream and an all ages selfie station where attendees can take
photos with signage that documents their commitment to voting.
The project is spearheaded by theatre artist and social activist Joan Lipkin, Artistic Director of
That Uppity Theatre Company and Ashley Tate, Artistic Director of Ashleyliane Dance Company.
The choreography will be based on various themes of the voting experience, including the
experience of African Americans, women, Latinx and people with disabilities around voting,
voting rights, voter suppression, voting in other countries, among other themes.
“As this is arguably one of the most important elections of our lifetime, we have to come
together as artists to offer our talents, vision, and passion to actively participate in promoting
voting and voter registration. The range of participating artists reflects much of the diversity in
the St Louis community and offers creative and exciting perspectives on why voting is crucial
and a precious right,” said Joan Lipkin, Artistic Director of That Uppity Theatre Company.
Only 36.4 percent of the voting-eligible population turned up for the 2014 midterm elections,
according to numbers from the United States Election Project, run by Dr. Michael McDonald at
the University of Florida, which marks the 2014 midterms as having the lowest turnout since
WWII. In 2016, eligible voter turnout was just over 58 percent. In both instances, a low number
of voters have been determining the fate of the nation. We are now in the lead-up to the 2018
midterms, and communities face a number of obstacles to increased voter turnout.
Previous performances of “Dance the Vote” include outside Vintage Vinyl in the Delmar Loop,
St. Louis Black Pride and Left Bank Books.
The first midterm election edition “Dance the Vote” performance will take place on Saturday,
Oct. 6 from 2-5 p.m. at the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park. Non-partisan voter
registration opportunities will be available on location to interested voters. Performances will be
held within a three-hour time slot and each piece will be performed more than once.
“Dance the Vote provides an opportunity to showcase the skills of St. Louis choreographers and
dancers in service of community involvement. We are excited to create pieces tied to the history
of voting to remind the community how important it is to exercise this fundamental right,” said
Ashley Tate, Artistic Director of Ashleyliane Dance Company who is co-chairing Dance the Vote.
Featured image is photo of Ashley Tate.
 

By Connie Bollinger
Contributing Writer
“The Book of Moron” is not to be confused with the Tony-winning Broadway musical “The Book of Mormon.” But both are laugh-out-loud funny.
 
This one-man show is the brain child of actor, writer and comedian Robert Dubac, a multi-talented humorist who creates innovative and completely unique theater.

Subtitled “If Thinking Were Easy, Everybody Would Do It,” the play takes on rampant stupidity, and Dubac has much to say.

“The Book of Moron” is a cerebral tour de force, a 90- minute walk through his world of skewered notions and questions that involve some of the larger problems humans face daily in a world of hype and spin.

Dubac engages the audience immediately and keeps us hanging on every word, even forcing us to think a bit, a feat of magic in itself these days.

The premise of his show is that he has been conked on the head and has lost his memory, or his inner self. He realizes he must find out who he is, what he believes, and what exactly happened to him.Dubac sets out on his journey to self-awareness with exuberance and takes us along. Our guides on this trek are his inner voices: his Common Sense, his Reason, his Inner Moron, his Inner Child, his Inner A***hole and we, the audience, act as his Scruples. 
Dubac gives each character distinctive voices and mannerisms. He is flawless in his performance, the very definition of a professional. The wise use of props and even a bit of magic was refreshing. 
 
Along with his own incredible wit, Dubac combines several genres of comedy in his show, calling to mind George Carlin, Jerry Seinfeld and even a bit of Lewis Black thrown in for good measure. But the show is all his — noisy,sharp writing, paradoxes flowing freely and an “all hands on deck” approach.

He entreats us to keep up as his agile mind moves from one segment to another of his quest.

Describing a performer like Robert Dubac or a show like “The Book of Moron” is extremely challenging. Definition seems to limit the experience. The themes are fun but deep, the visuals are arresting. One could call it observational comedy but that’s cliched. 
 
First-hand observation is the only way I can think of to fully appreciate this show and this performer.
 
Robert Dubac’s “The Book of Moron” can be seen through Sept. 23 at the Playhouse at Westport Plaza. For more information, visit www.playhouseatwestport.com

The Muny announced Friday that beginning with its 2019 season, casting for its productions will be by Telsey + Company, one of the nation’s premier casting offices for theatre, film and television.
The Telsey team will work closely with The Muny’s artistic and production staff on principal and ensemble casting, with St. Louis local casting managed by The Muny. Given the intensity and breadth of The Muny’s seven-show season, the initial casting team from Telsey + Company will include Craig Burns, Rachel Hoffman, Patrick Goodwin, Rebecca Scholl and Laura Wade.
“I’ve collaborated with the Telsey office on several Broadway shows, and they’re an amazing team – they bring passion, insight and a standard of excellence to all of their work,” said Muny Artistic Director and Executive Producer Mike Isaacson. “As we begin our second century, I’m proud to collaborate with Telsey + Company and bring their artistic voice to The Muny.”

“When we initially sat down to talk about the potential of this partnership, I was immediately inspired by Mike’s passion for actors, directors, choreographers, and all creative teams that come together to collaborate during the summer at The Muny,” said Bernie Telsey. “We’re proud to join this team and work with an institution that has such a prolific history.”
Telsey + Company’s current Broadway musicals include Anastasia, Carousel, Come From Away, Frozen, Hamilton, Kinky Boots, Mean Girls, My Fair Lady, Once on This Island, Spongebob The Musical, Waitress andWicked. 
The casting schedule for The Muny’s 2019 season will be made available via muny.org shortly after the highly-anticipated 2019 season is announced on Oct. 17 at The Muny’s bi-annual concert series, Muny Magic at The Sheldon.
 

A Doll’s House, Part 2 continues The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis’ Mainstage season, Oct. 10 – Nov. 4. Written by Lucas Hnath and directed by Timothy Near, it’s a period comedy with a modern attitude.
Hnath’s audacious sequel, written more than 135 years after Henrik Ibsen’s original, hit Broadway in 2017 like a sneak attack. Ibsen’s familial drama remains a foundational piece of theatre, with a still-controversial ending in which a married woman chooses to walk out on her family. But Hnath took the themes and characters of that familiar classic and flipped them on their heads, imagining what would happen if protagonist Nora Helmer returned home 15 years after her dramatic exit.
The play presents a bizarre and thrilling sight of Ibsen’s characters hashing out their unresolved issues with hilarious, profane and poetic barbs – in full period costumes, no less.
Caralyn Kozlowski, in her Rep debut, leads the cast as Nora. Her theatre credits include the national tour of Dirty Dancing and the Off-Broadway production The Dressmaker’s Secret. She’s appeared on television in episodes of Law & Order, Numb3rs and Third Watch.
Michael James Reed appears as Nora’s husband Torvald. This is Reed’s 15th production at The Rep, following appearances in Hamlet and Faceless last season. Andrea Abello, as the couple’s daughter Emmy, and Tina Johnson, as the family’s long-suffering nanny Anne Marie, complete the cast.
The Rep’s casting director is McCorkle Casting Ltd.
Director Near returns to The Rep for the first time since 2012’s Clybourne Park, which won five St. Louis Theater Circle Awards – including an Outstanding Director honor for Near. She has directed 11 shows at The Rep, dating back to 1981’s Buried Child, which starred Holly Hunter.
The design team includes scenic designer Scott C. Neale (Georama, 2016 – St. Louis Theater Circle Award winner), costume designer Victoria Livingston-Hall, lighting designer Ann G. Wrightson (Caught, 2018) and sound designer Rusty Wandall (Born Yesterday, 2018). Tony Dearing will stage manage the production.
Tickets for A Doll’s House, Part 2 are now on sale at repstl.org, by phone at 314-968-4925 or in-person at The Rep box office, located at 130 Edgar Road on the campus of Webster University. Ticket prices range from $19 to $92. Six-show Mainstage subscriptions or pick-your-own subscriptions of three-to-five Mainstage subscriptions are also available.
Show times are Tuesdays, selected Wednesdays and selected Sundays at 7 p.m.; Thursdays, Fridays and selected Saturdays at 8 p.m. Matinee performances are selected Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m., Saturdays at 4 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
For more information on the production, visit repstl.org/dollshouse2.

 
 

‘Grease,’ ‘Man of La Mancha’ and ‘101 Dalmatians’ at New Theatre Next Summer
Stages St. Louis is thrilled to announce its spectacular 33rd Season. The 2019 Season includes the dazzling and hilarious “The Boy from Oz,” the smash hit “Grease,” the romantic adventure “Man of La Mancha” and the Emerson Family Theatre Series production of Disney’s “101 Dalmatians.”
“With the 2019 Season, Stages turns its eyes to the staging of its final season at the Robert G. Reim Theatre in preparation for the move to a brand new state-of-the-art theatre in downtown Kirkwood. To honor this move, we wanted to celebrate the great artistic diversity inherent in any given Stages season” expressed Artistic Director Michael Hamilton.
“The Midwest premiere and rare North American production of the Australian hit ‘The Boy from Oz’ celebrates a life in the theatre, the very American ‘Grease’ us a oio-culture phenomenon celebrated and seen across the world by a cross-section of patrons both old and young; and ‘Man of La Mancha’ urges Stages audiences to continue to ‘dream the impossible dream’ which we believe will be fulfilled with the move to the new Performing Arts Center and the continuation of establishing Stages as a positive beacon of theatrical arts in our community” continued Hamilton.

“After the tremendous success of our 32nd Season, we are thrilled to offer an eclectic, exciting and energetic lineup of shows in 2019. These incredible titles offer something that will appear to every member of the Stages audience!” stated Executive Producer Jack Lane.
The fun kicks off May 31 and runs through Oct. 6, 2019.
Liza Minnelli and husband Peter Allen“The Boy from Oz”May 31 – June 30Music and Lyrics by Peter Allen, Book by Martin Sherman, Original Book by Nick Enright
Man of Dazzling and hilarious as the legendary Peter Allen himself, “The Boy from Oz” follows the Australian singer-songwriter from his humble beginnings performing in backcountry pubs to his international stardom beside such Hollywood icons as Judy Garland and her daughter, Liza Minnelli. Featuring such beloved Peter Allen hits as “Don’t Cry Out Loud,” “I Honestly Love You” and the show-stopping “I Go to Rio,” The Boy from Oz” is a showbiz celebration to life, love and to being fabulous.
“Grease”July 19 – Aug. 18Book, Music and Lyrics by Warren Casey and Jim Jacobs.Additional Music by Barry Gibb, John Farrar, Scott Simon and Louis St. Louis
Welcome to Rydell High where Danny Zuko and his gang of Burger Palace Boys and Pink Ladies rule the school! Bursting with explosive energy and 1950’s nostalgia, “Grease” blends an irresistible mix of adolescent angst and all-American teen spirit to create a high octane pop-culture phenomenon you won’t want to miss.
 
 
“Man of La Mancha”Sept. 6 – Oct. 6Music by Mitch Leigh, Lyrics by Joe Darion, Book by Dale Wasserman
A romantic and inspiring musical adventure, “Man of La Mancha” tells the epic story of 17th century author Miguel de Cervantes and his immortal literary creation Don Quixote. This poignant tale of ultimate heartbreak and unimaginable triumph features a lushly melodic score that includes the rapturous “Dulcinea,” the rousing title song, and the classic Broadway anthem which dares us all to dream “The Impossible Dream.”
 
“101 Dalmatians”
June 18 – June 30Music and Lyrics by Mel Leven, Randy Rogel, Richard Gibbs, Brian Smith, Dan Root, and Martin Lee Fuller; Book Adapted by Marcy Heisler.
Join the evil Cruella De Vil and her two klutzy henchmen as they try to steal a litter of the cutest puppies ever to hit jolly old London Town. But not to worry – this fur-raising adventure ends happily with plenty of puppy power to spare! A musical treat for the entire family. Disney’s “101 Dalmatians” is sure to have audiences barking for more.
Stages St. Louis is the region’s foremost not-for-profit company committed to preserving and advancing the art form of musical theatre through excellence in performance and education. In 2019, Stages celebrates its 33rd year of producing Broadway-quality theatre, presenting 140 performances from June through October to nearly 50,000 patrons.
Stages opened in 1987 with a budget of $50,000 and a part-time seasonal staff of eight. Today, the company employs a full-time staff of 26 overseeing a budge of $4.7 million. During the performance season, an additional 150 actors and crew members bring the productions to life. To date, Stages professionals have produced 116 musicals, with over 3,700 performances, playing to more than one million patrons.
Subscriptions to the 2019 Season begin at $120 and will go on sale Dec. 3. Single tickets will go on sale April 1, 2019. Single ticket prices range from $25 to $65. Stages’ Mainstage productions perform in the intimate, 377-seat Robert G. Reim Theatre at the Kirkwood Civic Center, 111 S. Geyer Road in St. Louis, MO 63122. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 314-821-2407 or visit www.StagesStLouis.org
 

By Lynn Venhaus
Managing Editor
Oh, the places you’ll go – the Oklahoma territory in 1906, Buenos Aires, the Emerald City, church, an art gallery, a boarding school, and a comedic mind on pop culture brainwashing. From classic musicals to iconic playwrights, you’ll be transported on adventures. Pick a place and go see a play!
“The Book of Moron”The Playhouse at Westport Plaza
Sept. 13 – 23
www.westportstl.com
What It’s About:  Robert Dubac’s newest Off-Broadway hit “The Book of Moron” has been described as one of the most hilarious, intelligent and scorching satirical attacks on idiocracy since Mark Twain. Having been brainwashed by a culture that worships the Kardashians over character, delusion over truth, and selfies over self-effacement, Dubac begins his journey with a simple question: Who am I? What do I believe? What’s the point?
Okay, that’s three questions but suffice to say, he has no answers. Just voices. Inner voices who come to life with precision and wit. One by one they pull him into a hysterical alternative universe of critical thought in search of the bigger picture. It’s a head trip on a banana peel.”

The Children’s Hour”The Theatre Guild of Webster Groves
Sept. 7 – 16
Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.
314-962-0876
www.theatreguildwg.org
What It’s About:  Longtime friends Karen and Martha run a boarding school for girls. After a malicious youngster starts a rumor about the two women, the rumor soon turns to scandal. As the young girl comes to understand the power she wields, she sticks by her story, which precipitates tragedy for the women. It is later discovered that the gossip was pure invention, but it is too late. Irreparable damage has been done
Director: Barbara Mulligan
Cast: Jessica Johns Kelly, Nori Rhodes, Pepi Parshall, Patrick Ryan, Melanie Klug, Betsy Gasoske, Kaylee Ryan, Lydia Foss, Valletta Thurmon, Adrianna Misra, Sydney McClenning, Jesen Clendennen, Gracie Giles, Gentry Giles, Sophia Leritz and Christian Davis.
Of Note: Tickets are Adults $15, Seniors and Students $12, and are available at the door (cash or check). They do not take advanced reservations.
The Guild is a very old building, historic in fact, but because of this we are not wheelchair or handicap accessible. The Guild has a total of 31 steps.
Robert Stevens photo
“Crowns: The Gospel Musical”The Black Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Sept. 5 – 23
Edison Theatre at Washington University
Box Office: (314) 534-3807
www.blackrep.org
What It’s About: Crowns refers to hats worn by black women. Hats become a springboard for an exploration of black history and identity as seen through the eyes of a young black woman who has come down South to stay with her aunt after her brother is killed in Brooklyn.
Hats are everywhere, in exquisite variety, and the characters use the hats to tell tales about everything from the etiquette of hats to their historical and contemporary social functions.
Director: Linda Kennedy
Cast: Anita Jackson leads the cast as Mother Shaw, with Maureen Williams as Wanda, Amber Rose as Velma, Leah Stewart as Mabel, Eleanor Humphrey as Jeannette, Myke Andrews as The Man and Tyler White as Yolanda.
Of Note: Director Linda Kennedy says: “The mothers and grandmothers, women of the church, were the glue that held us all together. They helped to raise us and helped make us accountable for our actions. We feared them then but are so grateful to them now. One of the greatest gifts a child can receive is the opportunity to sit and listen to and learn from an elder.” Rounding out the behind the scenes team will be the stage manager, Tracy D. Holliway-Wiggins, set designer, Dunsi Dai, lighting by Joe Clapper, and costumes by Daryl Harris.
“Evita”The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Sept. 5 – 30
www.repstl.org
What It’s About:  The incandescent Eva Perón’s rise from poverty to power electrified the world – and made her an iconic political celebrity. Winner of seven Tony Awards, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s tour-de-force musical revels in the glamour, charisma and controversy that defined the First Lady of Argentina. With its unforgettable anthem “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” and kaleidoscope of sights and sounds, “Evita” dazzles with pure passion.
Director: Rob Ruggiero, with music direction by Charlie Alterman and choreography by Gustavo Zajac.
Cast: Michelle Aravena (Eva Perón), Pepe Nufrio (Che), Sean MacLaughlin (Juan Perón), Nicolas Dávila (Augstín Magaldi/Ensemble), Shea Gomez (Perón’s Mistress/Ensemble).
Ensemble: Maria Bilbao, Nathaniel Burich, Ben Chavez, Samuel Druhora, Carmen Garcia, Esmeralda Garza, Samantha Gershman, Julie Hanson, Keith Hines, Jose Luaces, Ben Nordstrom, Waldemar Quinones-Villanueva, April Strelinger and Tim Wessel.
Eric Woolsey Photo
“Oklahoma!”Stages St. Louis
Sept. 7 – Oct. 7
Robert G. Reim Theatre
Kirkwood Community Center, 111 South Geyer Road
www.stagesstlouis.org
What It’s About: Romance, conflict, comedy and colorful characters set in 1906 in the Oklahoma territory.
Director: Michael Hamilton
Starring: Zoe Vonder Haar as Aunt Eller, John Flack as Andrew Carnes, Leah Berry as Bertie Cummings and
Of Note: “Oh, what a beautiful musical! Rodgers and Hammerstein’s timeless first collaboration was, in many ways, their most innovative. And while OKLAHOMA! completely changed the face of American musical theatre 75 years ago, it remains as fresh and vital today as it was then with its loving celebration of the American spirit. A stunning blend of drama, music, and dance, the exhilarating Rodgers and Hammerstein score contains such classics as “People Will Say We’re In Love,” “The Surrey With The Fringe On Top,” “Kansas City,” “I Cain’t Say No,” and the pulsating title tune, “Oklahoma!” A gold standard that set the bar for all great musicals that came after it.
Peter Wochniak Photo
“Social Security”Alfresco Productions
Sept. 14, 15 and 16
7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Sunday at 2 p.m.
Alfresco Arts Center
2041 Delmar Ave., Granite Citywww.alfrescoproductions.org
What It’s About: The comedy focuses on trendy Manhattan art gallery owners Barbara and David Kahn, whose lives is turned upside down when her sister Trudy deposits their eccentric mother Sophie, on the couple’s doorstep, while she and her husband head to Buffalo to rescue their sexually precocious college student from a menage a trois!   Sophie is introduced to Maurice, who offers to paint her portrait and soon begins to brighten her life in ways she never expected, in her twilight years.
Director: Tim Callahan
Cast: Leslie Aerts, Danny Brown, Julie Cox, Nick Drago, John Mefford and Trish Nelke.
Photo Provided
“The Wizard of Oz”
Christ Memorial Productions
Sept. 14 – 23
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., Sundays at 2:30 p.m.
Christ Memorial Lutheran Church
5252 S. Lindbergh>www.CMPShows.org
314-631-0304.
What It’s About: L. Frank Baum’s classic tale, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, background music by Herbert Stothart, dance and vocal arrangements by Peter Howard, orchestration by Larry Wilcox. It is adapted by John Kane for the Royal Shakespeare Company, and based upon the classic MGM motion picture owned by Turner Entertainment Company.
Dorothy Gale of Kansas journeys to the Land of Oz, where she encounters the Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, and is besieged by the Wicked Witch of the West, all with her beloved Toto by her side. Will she make it back home to Auntie Em and Uncle Henry with The Wizard’s help?
Cast: Grace Wilkinson – Dorothy
Jennifer Kerner – Aunt Em / Chorus
Kathryn Nestor Klein – Glinda / Chorus
Michael Klein – Uncle Henry / Winkie / Chorus
Ray Martin – Tinman / Hickory
Nathan Gallop – Scarecrow / Hunk
John Jauss – Lion / Zeke
Nicky Collett – Wicked Witch of the West / Miss Gulch
Keith Poppitz – Wizard / Professor / Chorus
Lucy – Toto
Victor Landon – Munchkin Mayor / Monkey / Tap & Dancer / Chorus
Elena Adams – Munchkin Barrister / Poppy / Chorus
Abigail Roberts – Munchkin Coroner / Poppy / Chorus
Delaney McCoy – Munchkin Lullaby League / Monkey / Tap Dancer / Chorus
Ella Blasé – Munchkin Lullaby League / Monkey / Tap Dancer
Ginger Cox – Munchkin Lullaby League / Poppy / Chorus
Dakota Davis – Munchkin Lollipop Guild / Nikko
Jackson Ehlen – Munchkin Lollipop Guild / Poppy / Chorus
John McCreary – Munchkin Lollipop Guild / Poppy / Chorus
Of Note: The cast has more than 100 members. If you are interested in a special Sensory Friendly performance on Thursday, Sept. 20. please email [email protected] for details.

101st Season to be Announced
The Muny concludes its century of celebration with the seventh installment of its bi-annual concert series, Muny Magic at The Sheldon. Set for Oct. 17 and 18 at 7:30 p.m., Muny Magic at The Sheldon will star one of The Muny’s most beloved leading ladies, Jenny Powers, and her husband, Broadway’s Matt Cavenaugh, both Drama Desk nominees.
Powers was recently seen in The Muny’s Centennial Gala, An Evening with the Stars, and was featured in Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. Cavenaugh was last seen on Broadway as Tony in the Tony Award-winning revival of West Side Story.
In addition to the performance, Muny Artistic Director and Executive Producer Mike Isaacson will announce the line-up for the highly-anticipated 2019 summer season, The Muny’s first season of its second century, and the premiere season for the new James S. McDonnell Stage.

“I was so happy when Jenny and Matt agreed to join us this fall,” said Isaacson. “Jenny has been a part of our Muny family for a while, with so many wonderful and varied performances to her credit. Having worked with Matt long ago on the first national tour of Thoroughly Modern Millie, and seeing his extraordinary career since, I’m thrilled for the Muny audience to finally have a chance to experience his talent.”
Their show will feature a variety of songs from Broadway, the Great American songbook and a few pop selections, and will be music directed by frequent Muny artist and season music director, Michael Horsley.
“Jenny and Matt are both incredible talents and perfect for this Muny Magic series,” said Muny President and CEO Denny Reagan. “The love they share for their music and each other is unmistakable and I know audiences will enjoy getting caught up in their story.”
JENNY POWERS – Muny credits include: Jerome Robbins’ Broadway (Hildy/Monotony Singer), An Evening with the Stars, Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins), The Addams Family (Morticia Addams), Mamma Mia! (Tanya), Oliver! (Nancy), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Milly) and Camelot (Guenevere). Broadway: Grease, Little Women. Theatre highlights: It’s a Bird…It’s a Plane…It’s Superman!; Of Thee I Sing and Follies at NYC City Center Encores!; Donnybrook! at the Irish Rep (Drama Desk nomination); Dangerous Beauty at the Pasadena Playhouse; Happiness at Lincoln Center; Secondhand Lions at the 5th Avenue Theatre; Little Dancer at the Kennedy Center. TV/Film: The Mysteries of Laura (NBC), Blue Bloods (CBS), Power (Starz), The Good Wife (CBS), Mercy (NBC), Law & Order: CI (USA & NBC), Six Degrees (ABC), Nurse Jackie(Showtime), I Think I Love My Wife and Confessions of a Shopaholic. Gonna Make You Love Me is her debut album with husband, Matt Cavenaugh.
MATT CAVENAUGH – Broadway credits include: West Side Story, Grey Gardens, A Catered Affair, Urban Cowboy and Thoroughly Modern Millie (national tour). He can be heard on the original cast recordings of West Side Story, Grey Gardens, A Catered Affairand Death Takes a Holiday. Off-Broadway: Death Takes a Holiday, Grey Gardens. Matt has performed regionally at the La Jolla Playhouse, Los Angeles Reprise, The Old Globe, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Goodspeed Opera House, Dallas Theater Center, Pittsburgh CLO, George Street Playhouse and the Denver Center. Television audiences know Matt as Mark Solomon from One Life to Live, Adam Munson on As the World Turns and from Law & Order: CI. Matt has collaborated twice with the New York Philharmonic on The Soldier’s Tale and Sondheim: The Birthday Concert (PBS). Matt’s debut album, Gonna Make You Love Me, produced and performed with his wife Jenny Powers, is available on iTunes and CDBaby.
What the critics have said about Jenny Powers and Matt Cavenaugh:
“Powers possesses a potent voice, and she commands the stage with her charm and conviction.” – Los Angeles Times
“Cavenaugh’s creamy voice has a persuasive charm.” – Variety
“Broadway stars Matt Cavenaugh and Jenny Powers work in perfect harmony.” – New York Daily News
Following its sensational premiere season staring Tony Award-winner Beth Leavel (2015) and The Buddy Holly Boys (2016), the Muny Magic at The Sheldon concert series has welcomed four of the most beloved leading ladies from recent Muny seasons (2016), Nicholas Rodriguez (2017), four of The Muny’s favorite leading men (2017) and Olivier Award-winner Laura Michelle Kelly (2018). Each fall and spring, the Muny Magic at The Sheldon series showcases the performers who have delighted Muny audiences by offering an intimate evening of story and song.
The October 17 and 18 performances of Muny Magic at The Sheldon will be held at The Sheldon Concert Hall – 3648 Washington Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63108 – at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are available now and range from $25 – $50. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.muny.org/munymagic or call 314-534-1111.
Photo credits: Broadway World, The Muny

Chiropractor-Turned-Playwright Strikes a Chord with Romantic Comedy
By Lynn Venhaus
Managing Editor
Actor-playwright Michael Madden could be called a late bloomer.  He did not start acting until five years ago. Two years ago, he wrote his first play, and people like it – a lot. “Maybe This Time” won an audience award in San Diego and sold out every performance last month in St. Louis.
The native of St. John, Mo., discovered that his own online dating experiences was a rich source of material. In 2016, “Maybe This Time” won an audience award at the San Diego Fringe Festival.
That encouragement started an interesting and exciting journey. Family suggested he bring the play to St. Louis, and arrangements were finalized with a local director and cast at The Gaslight Theatre Aug. 17-19.
The 90-minute play is about four online dates with good, bad, humorous and sad results.  You not only see and hear two people on a blind date, but you also see and hear what their brains are thinking. It shows how miscommunication and misunderstanding can lead to unexpected and unwarranted consequences.
Directed by Pamela Reckamp, the cast included Mara Bollini, George Doerr IV, Carrie Priesmeyer, Paul James, Tonya Darabcsek and Todd Micali.
In these characters he has created, Madden wants people to be entertained, moved, laugh and perhaps recognized themselves. He figures that nearly all adults have dated at some point in their lives, whether it’s been online or not, they can still relate.
“I think it struck a chord with people because everyone has been on a date before. And the play isn’t so much about online dating as dating itself. The reason people respond the most though, I believe, is that it’s a pretty unique idea to have the character’s brains on stage too. Hearing what people are thinking and then seeing what they say is very interesting,” he said.
And his online experience ultimately had a happy ending. Giving it one more shot, he met someone very special on Match.com.
“I saw this winsome blonde, and she was wearing a St. Louis Cardinals sweatshirt. We both live in San Diego. I found the love of my life,” he said about wife Ann (maiden name Siemer). “And she grew up in Florissant — went to Sacred Heart.”
He hopes his play about the pains, passions and possibilities of online dating as performers take you through the process and results will be seen by more people.
The reception was so positive in St. Louis, it opened doors – and his eyes, too.
“I realized that the show can travel with or without me,” Madden said. “I had directed all the previous performances and was worried that it would be a lot different. But I think the show’s bones are strong enough to support it being anywhere. The reception for every performance was loud and enthusiastic with a lot of laughter,” he said.
A small theater company in Washington state plans to do it next spring.
“Anyone can license it out for royalties. Not sure I’m bringing it back to St. Louis again, although if someone else wanted to do it, that would be fine. Producing it from California was very logistically challenging,” he said.
But he enjoyed his time visiting family and friends. A graduate of McBride High School, he did not do theater in school, but his parents, Bill and Marie Madden, were professional performers.
“They headed a group called Old-Time Vaudeville Troupe and then had a company called Banjo and Bus, where they took busloads of mostly seniors all over the U.S. while they entertained them on board with music, sing-a-longs, movies and games,” he said.
“My parents performed for the public for 50 years and my sister has been a working actor in New York and L.A. for 50 years also. So there’s a lot of this in my blood. I did a lot of lectures and speaking before I started acting five years ago as well,” he said.
Now it’s on to the next chapter, and back ensconced in California. Although he says: “St. Louis will always feel like home.”
The St. Louis cast of “Maybe This Time” with playwright Michael Madden (center): From left, Tara Darabcsek, Mara Bollini, Carrie Priesmeyer, Paul James, Todd Micali and George Doerr IV. (Photo provided)Here is our Q&A with Michael Madden:
1.Why did you choose your profession/pursue the arts?
“I was forced to retire from the chiropractic profession after a car accident in 1999. Since then I’ve done a variety of things, from producing the San Diego Blues Festival to buying and selling precious gems in Asia. I started acting about five years ago and writing and directing two years ago. My sister has been a working actor in NYC and LA for 50 years and my parents performed in public for decades.”
How would your friends describe you?“Loud but sensitive, irreverent but thoughtful, with many interests and passions.”
How do you like to spend your spare time?“Writing, reading, dancing, poker and dinner parties with family and friends.”
What is your current obsession? “Spoken Word like ‘The Moth Project’ and ‘The Narrators.’”
What would people be surprised to find out about you?“I worked in a leper colony in Venezuela and was a contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’”
Can you share one of your most defining moments in life?“The births of my two incredible daughters.”
Who do you admire most?“Anyone that is doing what they like and making a living at it.”
What is at the top of on your bucket list? “Getting interviewed.”
What is your favorite thing to do in St. Louis? “Visit the Missouri Botanical Garden.”
What’s next? “Hopefully another play.”
MORE ABOUT MICHAEL MADDENAge: 69Birthplace: St. LouisCurrent Location: San DiegoFamily: Wife Ann and daughters Ashley and CaseyEducation: B.A, in Psychology, UMSL; Doctor of Chiropractic, Logan CollegeDay Job: RetiredFirst Job: Slaving under my parents’ idea of what constituted a work ethicFavorite Role: Moss in “Body of Water” by Lee BlessingDream Role: Willy Loman in “Death of a Salesman”Awards/Honors/Achievements: Best Actor Nomination SD Aubrey Awards “Body of Water”/Audience Award 2016 SD Fringe Festival for “Maybe This Time”Favorite Quote/Words to Live By: “You don’t always get what you want and you rarely get what you deserve but you almost always get what you think you deserve. If you think you deserve hardship and garbage, you will often get that and conversely, if you think you deserve joy and abundance, you will often get joy and abundance.”A Song That Makes You Happy: “When You Wish Upon a Star”

2019 Event Provides Scholarships, Instructional, Educational &
Performance Opportunities for St. Louis Metro Area High School Students
Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation (FoxPACF) is pleased to announce the 9th Annual St. Louis Teen Talent Competition.  Registration is FREE and is NOW OPEN ONLINE at foxpacf.org for all performing arts high school students in the St. Louis Metropolitan area.  Students will be vying for more than $40,000 in college scholarships, cash awards, and prizes as well as performance opportunities. Contestants must be enrolled in the 9th, 10th, 11th or 12th grade in the 2018-2019 school year and must attend a high school/home school within a 50-mile bi-state radius from the Arch.

More than 225 high schools and performing arts organizations in the St. Louis metro area received details about the 9th Annual St. Louis Teen Talent Competition. Registration is open through December 1, 2018. Performing arts categories include (but are not limited to): Singer, Actor, Musician, Dancer, Band, Comedian, Magician, Circus Act or Specialty Act–which may include up to six students performing as a group and can perform original or published material. “We hope students who are passionate about the performing arts will register for the competition,” said Jim Weidman, President of the FoxPACF Board of Directors.
A “What It’s All About” Pre-Registration Seminar will be held in October of 2018 to provide an overview of the entire experience for anyone interested in competing.  Once registered, students will also have access to Pre-Competition Workshops that delve deeper into the auditioning process, audition techniques, etiquette, song choice, attire, etc. Registration for all workshops is available online at foxpacf.org.
Judges for both the Preliminary and Semi-final competitions are professionals representing a cross-section of the St. Louis performing arts community and entertainment industry who give constructive performance advice to each act individually.  Each round of competition will have a panel of at least three judges who will adjudicate and advance acts to the next round. Acts will be judged on technical ability, interpretation, stage presence and originality. Professional insight regarding auditioning tips and techniques along with scholarship opportunities throughout every level of the competition benefit for any high school student looking to improve their performance skills and education.
The Preliminary Round will be held in early February 2019 and the Semi-final Round will be held in March 2019.  The final competition on Saturday, April 13, 2019 at The Fabulous Fox is a professionally staged production, adjudicated by both St. Louis and national performing arts professionals. This final event is free and open to the public.
In addition to the $8,000 – 1st Place, $6,000 – 2nd Place, and $4,000 – 3rd Place scholarships awarded at the finals, restricted scholarship opportunities to Lindenwood University, Southeast Missouri State University, Webster University and University of Missouri-St. Louis will also be available to students taking part in the competition. Each finalist will also be eligible for unique public performance opportunities within the St. Louis area.
Finalists from the past eight years have performed at The Muny, National Dance Week, Taste of Maplewood, Gateway Grizzlies, Shakespeare Festival, Chamber Music Society of St. Louis, Winter Opera St. Louis and The Rising Stars Showcase. Highlights and winning performances from the 2011 through 2018 events are currently posted on our YouTube and SchoolTube channels and provide viewers a glimpse of what the competition is all about.
“We have been thrilled with the response to this event from students, parents, arts organizations and the community.  The Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation is uniquely positioned to provide the opportunity for students to perform at the Fox and on other stages around St. Louis. We are pleased that we are able to put talented young people in the spotlight,” said Mary Strauss, creator of the competition.
Call for Entries9th Annual St. Louis Teen Talent CompetitionDEADLINE: December 1, 2018Register on-line: https://www.foxpacf.org/programs/teen-talent-competition/
For additional information about this and other Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation events, please visitwww.foxpacf.org