Monday, April 22, 2013


Musical Theatre students Jacob Chancellor,
Cory Linger and Daniel take the lead in
On the Town.
Photo provided

           In what is a huge theatrical feat, the University of Oklahoma Weitzenhoffer School of Musical Theatre and University Theatre will present the Broadway-size musical comedy and dance extravaganza On the Town.  Leonard Bernstein’s musical classic and following  Jerome Robbins' inspired choreography comes to port with rhythm, humor and a wholesome dash of romance. Seven performances are scheduled at 8 p.m. April 26-27, May 2-4 and two matinees at 3 p.m. on April 28, and May 5 in the Reynolds Performing Art Center, 560 Parrington Oval, Norman. Rated G, great for the entire family.
On the Town has a long history, first as a Broadway musical in 1944 with several revivals on Broadway and the West End London.  On the Town was adapted as a musical film in 1949 by MGM and became a movie sensation with legendary actors Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly, Ann Miller, Betty Garrett and Jules Munshin. Several classic songs are, “New York, New York,”  “Come Up to My Place” and “Some Other Time.”  In 1950 the film won the Academy Award for Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture, and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Cinematography.
“One of the more delightful aspects of the production is paying homage to the great choreographic work of Jerome Robbins,” states Lyn Cramer, director.  “Like his colleagues, Betty Comden and Adolph Green (songs and lyrics) and Leonard Bernstein (score), this enormous show was a first for Mr. Robbins and company in the world of musical theatre.  The story is based on the success of Robbins’ ballet, Fancy Free, a story told completely through dance of three sailors on 24-hour shore leave in the dynamic city of New York with all the fun and romance they can find.  The biggest challenge for any choreographer is to pay homage to Jerome Robbins' work without copying it.   The University of Oklahoma has the ability to do just that with great aplomb.  The dancers are sensational and the choreography not only tells a great story but the excitement of watching these ballets is remarkable.  Audiences will be spellbound at every turn.”
Cramer adds, “The Bernstein score is one of ultimate challenge for any musician, whether singer or instrumentalist.  It is a daunting task and when done well; it is a delight for both the performer and most especially, for the audience.  The dynamic force of the score will have the audience on the edge of their seats.”
Lyn Cramer serves as choreographer and director of the production. Cramer is a veteran teacher and choreographer. She is a Weitzenhoffer Endowed Professor in Musical Theatre Dance at the University of Oklahoma and was named the 2005 Irene and Julian J. Rothbaum Presidential Professor of Excellence in the Arts by the Weitzenhoffer Family College of Fine Arts.  On July 4th of this year, Lyn’s first book, Creating Musical Theatre: Conversations with Broadway Directors and Choreographers will be released. 
OU School of Dance faculty Steve Brule and Clara Cravey Stanley have joined the production to choreograph the musical’s ballet pieces. A cast of 47 students from the Weitzenhoffer School of Musical Theatre and School of Dance will deliver this uplifting, fun show full of energy and verve. The production staff includes Weitzenhoffer School of Musical Theatre and School of Drama students, faculty, and the staff of OU University Theatre. 
Get social with University Theatre by becoming a fan on of Fine Arts District.  Follow the musical engagement of On The Town on or with hashtag #OUMT.
Tickets prices for On the Town are $30 adult, $25 senior adult, OU faculty and staff, and military, and $15 student. Tickets may be purchased by phone (405) 325-4101, or in person at the OU Fine Arts Box Office, 500 W. Boyd Street, in the Catlett Music Center, Norman.  The University of Oklahoma is an equal opportunity institution. For tickets and accommodations on the basis of disability, please call the OU Fine Arts Box Office at (405) 325-4101.
From the press release 

No comments:

Post a Comment