Cultural Park Theatre wraps up its first show of the season Sunday, but ticket packages are still on sale for those who do not want to miss out.
The theater opened Sept. 7 with "Shake, Rattle and Roll," a rock 'n' roll music review that features tunes from the '50s. Michael Moran, executive director, said the first show of the season always showcases the youth.
"That show always kind of salutes the theater's younger talents," he said. "Some of them are as young as 10, and they go up through 19."
Because of the cast, the first show makes for a good family outing.
"Everybody can come to that one," Moran said.
The plot of "Shake, Rattle and Roll" takes place in a classroom.
If you go
Season is under way at Cultural Park Theater. Performing Arts Center:
The show schedule includes:
* Shake Rattle and Roll, Continuing Sept. 15, 16
With songs like "Great Balls of Fire," Frankie Avalon's "Venus," "Poison Ivy' "Teenager in Love" and more. You'll want to dance in the aisles as this show proves, Rock 'n Roll is here to stay.
* Love Sex and the IRS, Sept. 28 through Oct. 7
This is a wild farce with twists of fate, sight gags, mistaken identities and hilarious comic lines. Jon Trachtman and Leslie Arthur are out of work musicians who room together in New York City. To save money, Jon has been filing tax returns listing the pair as married. The dreaded day of reckoning comes when the Internal Revenue Service informs the "couple" they're going to be investigated by a Mr. Spinner.
* Love Songs of Stephen Sondheim, Oct. 26 through Nov. 4
CPTC pays tribute to the award winning Stephen Sondheim, who has won Grammy and Tony awards, a Pulitzer Prize, and an Academy Award for his work on several major productions, such as "Sweeney Todd," "West Side Story," "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" and many more.
* Moon Over Buffalo, Nov. 16 through Nov. 25
This hilarious comedy centers on George and Charlotte Hay, fading stars of the 1950s. On the brink of a disastrous split-up, they receive word that they might have one last shot at stardom. Unfortunately for them, everything that could go wrong does go wrong.
* A Tuna Christmas, Dec. 14 through Nov. 23
This comedy is set in the fictional town of Tuna, Texas. The plot centers on the town's annual Christmas Yard Display Contest, won fourteen times in a row by Vera Carp. A super mysterious "Christmas Phantom," known for vandalizing the yard displays, has the contestants on edge.
* Rumors, Jan. 4 through Jan. 13
Four couples arrive at the townhouse of a deputy New York City mayor and his wife to attend a party celebrating their 10th wedding anniversary. However, the four couples soon discover that there are no servants, the hostess is missing, and the deputy mayor has shot himself. Troubles arise when they decide they need to do everything possible to conceal the evening's events from the local police and the media.
* Man of La Mancha, Jan. 25 through Feb. 10
This story of Miguel de Cervantes and his servant, Sancho, who are thrown into prison by the Spanish Inquisition. The real story unravels as Cervantes creates the tale of a misguided knight known as Don Quixote. The Tony award winning musical features many memorable songs such as the Impossible Dream. Don't miss the chance to see this truly remarkable musical performed at the Cultural Park Theater.
* Jake's Women, Feb. 22 through March 3
Mired in an unhappy marriage with current spouse Maggie, Jake tries to cope with his many problems by conjuring up images of the other women in his life; his late wife, a really confused daughter, a neurotic sister and his analyst. Jake carries on imaginary conversations with these ladies. The real trouble begins when the specters of Jake's Women begin showing up.
* Annie, March 15 through March 31
Abused by the orphanage matron, Annie, a spunky orphan, decides to run away and find her parents. Billionaire Oliver Warbucks, at the same time, decides to invite an orphan over to his house for Christmas and Annie is chosen. He later tries to help Annie find her parents by putting up a $50,000 reward. Rooster and his girlfriend, Lily, pretend to be Annie's parents in order to get the reward. In the end, Hannigan, Rooster, and Lily are all arrested and parentless Annie is adopted by Warbucks.
* Sweet Dreams at the Opry, April 12 through April 21
We welcome the Faziolis and A Family Affair. "Sweet Dreams at the Opry" blends individual tributes to Country Music Legends like Patsy Cline, Kenny Rogers, Crystal Gayle and Ray Stevens. The ensemble numbers are just as much fun, with the "Pit Stop Tabernacle Choir," and Regina, the show's star-struck, man-crazy assistant.
Tickets are $18, seniors are $16, children are $12. Season tickets are available through Sept. 15 - season $130, snowbirds, $104. Group rates available.
Cultural Park Theater is at 528 Cultural Park Blvd. Call 772-5862 for more information.
Now auditioning male singers
Cultural Park Theatre is now auditioning male singers 17 and up for Music Revue saluting Stephen Sondheim. Performances in October. Please call theater to schedule appointment with Michael before Sept. 22, 239-772-5862 or email EXECUTIVEDIRECTOR@CULTURALPARKTHEATER.COM
Moon over Buffalo
Cultural Park Theatre is now auditioning for a large male role; must be able to play male in his 50s. The actor also must be able to do strong physical comedy, which could include pratfalls, running, stage slaps, stage combat (fencing) ect. Play over-the-hill but larger-than-life. Must be able to play convincing drunk and be able to crumble under pressure.
This production will run Nov. 15 through Nov. 25.
If this sounds like you please call the theater for an audition, 239-772-5862
"The children learn from their teacher and parents, who are in for a career day, about the music and times back in the '50s," he said.
"Fifties style music is very popular right now," Moran added.
During the 2012 main season, there will be 10 shows and five concerts. Dramas and comedies run two weekends, and musicals run three weekends. Concerts are one-night events, except if they are special performances.
The shows are selected by the theater's play committee.
"They meet themselves and look at named shows," he said. "They ask patrons which shows they'd like to see in the following year."
Two well-known musicals in this season's lineup are "Man of La Macha," which runs Jan. 25 though Feb. 10, and "Annie," which is set for March 15 to 31.
"They were both major Broadway successes," Moran said.
Another is "Love Songs of Stephen Sondheim," which is scheduled for Oct. 26 through Nov. 4. The show is a tribute, with a focus on his love songs.
"Steve Sondheim is probably one of the world's most renowned writers of Broadway and film music," he said.
Moran cited "Love Sex and the IRS" as probably the least famous show on the schedule. The performance is about two musicians who live together in New York and one secretly files taxes for the other - as a married couple.
"They get audited by the IRS, then all the stuff goes crazy at that point," Moran said.
There are also two comedies by the popular playwright Neil Simon.
"Cultural Park has a reputation for doing Neil Simon comedies," he said.
According to Moran, it was pretty smooth preparing for the season as the committee was "extremely hardworking" and picked well-known shows.
"It was all gearing around the fact that the theater is celebrating its 50th year," Moran said. "The original company started in June 1963."As for the concerts, there is one set in December for Christmas that will feature holiday music Beatles-style with tribute band The Nowhere Band.
"They will play for four days," he said.
Las Vegas performer Tommy O, who specializes in Broadway and pop, is on the list, while "Sweet Dreams at the Opry" is a musical tribute to Patsy Cline and other country legends like Kenny Rogers, Crystal Gayle and Ray Stevens.
"It's become one of our more popular venues," Moran said of concerts.
The main season shows take place at 8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and at 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Concerts are at 8 p.m. Wednesdays.
Tickets prices for single shows and concerts are $18 for adults, $16 for seniors over age 55 and $12 for children and those with a student ID.
Until Sunday, customers can still buy ticket packages. The season ticket package includes all 10 shows for $130. The snowbird package excludes the first show and the last show of the season at a cost of $104 per person.
The concert package includes all five performances for $72.
Throughout the year, the theater hosts auditions for the shows. As of Friday, male singers ages 17 and up were being sought for "Music Revue" to salute Sondheim. Auditions will be held Sept. 22 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Moran said those interested in auditioning must sing 16-18 bars of music, be prepared to read a monologue or out of a script, and wear shoes to dance in.
As a community theater, all performers are volunteers.
"It's a very much relaxed audition process," he said.
No appointments are necessary.
"Basically, they can just show up," Moran said.
From Nov. 10 to 11, auditions will be held for "Annie."
"Which is an extremely popular show for young people to audition for," he said. "Everybody wants to be little orphan Annie."
For more information on tickets, ticket packages or auditions, contact the Cultural Park Theatre at 772-5862 or online: culturalparktheater.com.
Cultural Park Theatre is at 528 Cultural Park Blvd.