Gavin's Underground | Dec. 3, 2014 | City Weekly

 

As 2014 slowly comes to a freezing conclusion, those of you who grew up cool kids and ended up having cool kids of your own are probably looking for some kind of shared entertainment that doesn't revolve around being disappointed by TV "mid-season finales," or whatever excuse they make to take a two month hiatus. Thankfully, Salt Lake Acting Company has you covered with their sixth annual children's production running from December 5-27. This year the company will present A Year With Frog & Toad, an adaptation of the Arnold Lobel books and characters, complete with musical numbers and some added life lessons on friendship. Today we chat with four members of the cast, as well as director Penelope Caywood, and SLAC's Kid Connection PJ Caywood, about the production. (All pictures courtesy of SLAC.)

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Published in Blog & News

Get an inside look at some of the rehearsals for A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD with our marvelous cast! Director Penny Caywood talks about the importance of children's theater and why you should come and see the show! Thanks to Utah Theatre Bloggers Association for the great video.

Published in Blog & News

Get to know the director of A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD, the fantastic Penny Caywood, in this video interview produced by Utah Theatre Bloggers. Hear about her background, her experience with children's theatre, and how she got involved with Salt Lake Acting Company!

Published in Blog & News
Friday, 14 November 2014 14:31

A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD - Press Release

PRESS CONTACT: CYNTHIA FLEMING | 801.363.7522 |

November 12, 2014
For Immediate Release

Salt Lake Acting Company Celebrates the Holiday Season With Its 6th Annual Children's Musical:
A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD
Book and Lyrics by Willie Reale
Music by Robert Reale
Based on the Books by Arnold Lobel

Salt Lake Acting Company (SLAC) is gearing up for the most wonderful time of the year. From December 5 through December 27, 2014, the SLAC lobby will be decked with artwork from the students of Washington Elementary and filled with the pitter-patter of little feet shuffling to their seats for the magical musical, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD. This marks SLAC's sixth year producing professional plays for children (of all ages), and of partnering with local schools and organizations that serve the needs of children in our community.

Based on the celebrated books by Arnold Lobel, the musical version of A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD is written by brothers Willie Reale (book and lyrics) and Robert Reale (music). The musical follows the woodland adventures of two amphibious friends – a worrywart toad and a perky frog – with their assorted colorful hopping, crawling and flying companions over the course of a year.

Director Penelope Caywood is a children's theatre aficionado having worked as Artistic Director for Youth Theatre at the U for the past eight years as well as directing five of SLAC's six children's plays. With so much experience under her belt, it's really saying something that A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD is one of her very favorite children's shows.

"If you like musical theatre, then this is the show to bring a child to," Caywood says. "The story is gentle and modest but the music is lively and sophisticated and definitely parent-proof. Being a parent, I think that the most successful children's entertainment is also enjoyed by adults. This is truly one of my favorite shows of all-time. My daughter and I have listened and sung along with the Broadway recording in the car since she was two and it hasn't lost its luster. It's a lovely story about two good friends wrapped in a great score."

One of the most rewarding aspects of producing children's theatre for Salt Lake Acting Company is its Title 1 Matinee program, which allows over 1,400 underprivileged schoolchildren to experience the magic of live theatre at no cost to them or their schools. With arts education receiving less and less attention and funding, this program plays a vital role in providing a more well-rounded education to Utah students. Every children's play that SLAC produces is based on a literary work. SLAC creates a study guide to accompany each play and distributes it to every class that attends the Title 1 Matinee program. The guide includes learning activities to be completed before and after the children see the play, reinforcing the connection between literacy and the arts. Kristin Berez, a kindergarten teacher at Riley Elementary (a Title 1 school) said of SLAC's Title 1 Matinee program, "With budget cutbacks in schools, the arts program is limited, especially for Kindergarten. This exposure activates their right brains to restore balance to their education."

SLAC's 2014 Title 1 Matinee program will serve the following Utah Title 1 schools:

Bennion Elementary
Franklin Elementary
James E. Moss Elementary
Lincoln Elementary
Newman Elementary
North Star Elementary
Parkview Elementary
Pioneer Elementary
South Kearns Elementary
Washington Elementary
Whittier Elementary
Woodrow Wilson Elementary

Also during this time of year, SLAC bolsters its commitment to enrich and engage community by partnering with several local organizations. SLAC has developed a special relationship with Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA), a non-profit organization that brings animal resources to human needs in the areas of physical, occupational, speech, and psychotherapies, as well as special education. ITA launched its R.E.A.D. program in 1999 – the first comprehensive literacy program built around the appealing idea of reading to dogs. During the run of A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD, SLAC will host volunteers from ITA along with their furry friends in the lobby to raise awareness and money for the organization.

SLAC will be collecting donations for neighboring school Washington Elementary. With the students' specific needs in mind, SLAC asks that audience members who would like to make a donation bring chapstick, small bottles of lotion, band-aids, belts, shoe laces, and sweatpants for students in kindergarten through sixth grade.

SLAC is also partnering with Voices for Utah Children, a multi-issue child advocacy organization that works to make Utah a place where all children thrive. They will be joining SLAC for a special performance of A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD.

In addition to regular performances at Salt Lake Acting Company, the cast will make special appearances at local schools, bookstores, and libraries throughout November and December. [See schedule below.]

Saturday, November 29 at 11:00 am – The King's English Bookshop | 1511 S. 1500 E, SLC
Tuesday, December 2 at 5:00 pm – Sprague Library | 2131 Highland Drive, SLC
Tuesday, December 9 at 12:00 pm – South Jordan Library | 10673 S. Redwood Rd, South Jordan
Wednesday, December 10 at 4:00 pm – Sandy Library | 10100 Petunia Way, Sandy

SLAC is thrilled to welcome the holiday season and with it, the magic of children's theatre. A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD is sure to delight audiences of all ages.

WHO'S WHO

WRITERS


Willie Reale (Book and Lyrics) With his composer/brother, Robert Reale: A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD, Childrens' Theater Company in Minneapolis, New Victory Theatre, and Cort Theater on Broadway (two Tony nominations for book and lyrics); ONCE AROUND THE CITY, New York Stage and Film and Second Stage Theatre in New York; Quark Victory, Williamstown Theatre Festival; and THE DINOSAUR MUSICAL, The Arden in Philadelphia. Founder and Artistic Director for 18 years of The 52nd Street Project, an organization that brings inner-city children together with professional theater artists to create theater. For the Project, he has written dozens of plays, the lyrics to hundreds of songs and "52 Pick Up," the Project's how-to manual. The programs of The 52nd Street Project are currently being replicated at many sites across the country and Europe. In 1994, he was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in recognition of his ingenuity in creating theater and theater education programs for young people. Television credits: "Damages," "Homicide: Life on the Streets," "Deadline," "Mr. Sterling," "Keen Eddie," "The Jury," and "Tilt." He created a series called "Out There" for Sesame Workshop and the BBC shot in Australia (Australian Film Institute Award, Prix Jeunesse, and Writers' Guild of America nominations). He served as head writer and Co-Executive Producer on the team that reinvented "The Electric Company," now airing on PBS. Film work: Dreamgirls (lyrics to the song "Patience," Oscar nomination).

Robert Reale (Music) Shortly after graduating music school and several years touring in jazz and rock bands, Rob moved to New York in the mid-80's where he responded to a demand for authentic, hi-end music for film and television and founded the production music library, 8118 Music. He gigged in clubs and pits off-Broadway and also began collaborating with his brother Willie creating musical theater. They are a winning combination: Rob provides the music, Willie, the words. They had several Off-Broadway successes before their production, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD brought them to Broadway and garnered Rob a Tony nomination for Best Original Score Music.

DIRECTOR


Penny Caywood returns to direct her fifth children's production at SLAC. Penny started acting at the age of five. Her first role was the Shy Princess in THE KING AND I, she still has the costume to prove it. Her career started early, but her talents were not limited to the stage. She traveled across the country with a youth singing group—The LaMarca American Variety Singers. She sang on children's records, attended math school in Japan, took jazz and tap, played the flute and participated in speech contests. When she was 19, Penny was involved in the creation of a youth theatre company in Palos Verdes, CA called Curtains Up! Locally Penny is best known for her work with the University of Utah's Youth Theatre where she has been the director for the past seven years. She has directed every U Youth Theatre production and is responsible for educational and outreach programming too. Penny has directed at Rogers Memorial Theatre and SLAC.

MUSIC DIRECTOR


Darrin Doman is Double D-lighted to be returning to SLAC to work on A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD. Darrin served as Musical Director for SLAC's productions of CLICK CLACK MOO: COWS THAT TYPE and HOW I BECAME A PIRATE. Darrin made his Salt Lake Acting Company debut as Ben in SATURDAY'S VOYEUR 2005. Other SLAC stage credits include Dick Fig in THE EXIT INTERVIEW, Alan Raleigh in GOD OF CARNAGE and Charlotte von Mahlsdorf (understudy) in I AM MY OWN WIFE as well as appearances in SLAC's New Play Sounding Series—Reader, (a man enters); Dad, TRENCH COAT IN COMMON; Bart, THE THUGS; Mike, 14 and Reader, MAMMOTH. Additionally, he has particularly fond memories of playing Cosme McMoon in SOUVENIR for Utah Contemporary Theatre where he had the chance to act, sing and play the piano all in the same production. He works full-time at the University of Utah Hospital and recently completed a quest to see the 7 New Wonders of the World. Darrin is currently open to suggestions for future travel plans. Many thanks to the production staff, crew and cast for their hard work.

CAST


Jenessa Bowen (Mouse) is back for her fourth production at SLAC! She was last seen as Gayle God-zicka & Dead Docent in SATURDAYS VOYEUR 2014, "Thing 2" in THE CAT IN THE HAT last December, and Sister Docent in SATURDAYS VOYEUR 2013. More past credits include; Ruby in SHELTER (Off-Broadway debut), Little Red in INTO THE WOODS (Centerpoint Legacy), Natalie in NEXT TO NORMAL (Ziegfeld Theatre), Adelaide in GUYS AND DOLLS (Ziegfeld), Annabel Glick in LUCKY STIFF (WSU, Irene Ryan nominee & semi-finalist for Irene Ryan competition in LA), Sara in PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK (WSU, Irene Ryan nominee) Jolene in DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS (Ziegfeld), Peggy Swift in FATHER OF THE BRIDE (Hale Centre Theatre), Erin in RING OF FIRE (Dark Horse Theatre Co.), Nehebka in AIDA (Rodgers Memorial), Mary Lennox in THE SECRET GARDEN (Rodgers), Anybodys in WEST SIDE STORY (Rodgers), Adele in JANE EYRE (HCT), Lulu in NUPTIALS (HCT), and you may also recognize Jenessa from the KSL "Hi Monday" commercial. Jenessa has earned her Bachelors of Science in Musical Theatre from Weber State University.

Amelia Rose Moore (Turtle) is excited to be in her first show at SLAC! Amelia is a senior studying Musical Theatre at Weber State University under Jim Christian. Amelia was most recently seen in Mary Poppins at Hale Centre Theatre in West Valley, and as a performer in Simple Joys at Lagoon. Some of her favorite roles include Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, Christabelle in The Plain Princess (world premiere), and Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun. Amelia is excited to share the stage with such talented people, and to work with Penny again.

Terry Lee McGriff (Lizard) is elated to be making his Salt Lake Acting Company debut! Previous credits include Harpo in THE COLOR PURPLE (Wasatch Theatre Company), Hanschen in SPRING AWAKENING (Midvale Main Street Theatre), Rod in AVENUE Q (Babcock Theatre) and Jonas Fogg/Ensemble in SWEENEY TODD (Studio 115). Thanks to Penny, Cynthia, and Keven for this wonderful opportunity and to Jaten for your constant love and support!

Logan Tarantino (Frog) is ecstatic to make his Salt Lake Acting Company debut! Logan is a graduate from the Actor Training Program at the University of Utah. Recent roles include Lysander in Salt Lake Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Jean-Michel in The Grand Theatre's La Cage Aux Folles and Steve in Plan-B Theatre Company's Adam and Steve and the Empty Sea. He would like to thank his family, friends, professors, and SLAC!

Nathan Waite (Toad) is thrilled to be a part of his first production at SLAC especially with such an amazing cast and crew! Nate has most recently been seen in the role of Cain in Children of Eden, other memorable roles include Huck Finn in Big River, Javert in Les Miserable, and Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls.

--
WHO:
Salt Lake Acting Company

WHAT:
A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD
By Willie Reale and Robert Reale
Based on the books by Arnold Lobel

WHEN:
December 5 – 27, 2014

Performance Dates/Times
December 5 – 7PM
December 6 – 12PM, 3PM
December 7 – 12PM, 3PM
December 12 – 7PM
December 13 – 12PM, 3PM
December 14 – 12PM, 3PM
December 19 – 7PM
December 20 – 10AM, 12PM, 3PM
December 21 – 10AM, 12PM, 3PM
December 22 – 10AM, 12PM, 3PM
December 26 – 12PM, 3PM, 7PM
December 27 – 10AM, 12PM, 3PM

WHERE:
Salt Lake Acting Company
168 West 500 North, Salt Lake City

PRICE:
Children $15, Adults $25
Discounts are available for groups of ten or more.
Subscribers always pay the lowest price.

MORE INFORMATION:
Box Office: 801-363-7522
Open 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Mon – Fri
www.saltlakeactingcompany.org

CAST:
Jenessa Bowen, Amelia Rose Moore, Terry Lee McGriff, Logan Tarantino, Nathan Waite

ARTISTIC TEAM:
Director: Penny Caywood
Music Director: Darrin Doman
Set Design: Keven Myhre
Sound Design: Shea Madson
Costume Design: KL Alberts
Light Design: Jesse Portillo
Assistant Stage Manager: Annie Brantley

Salt Lake Acting Company (SLAC) is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 professional theatre founded in 1970 whose mission is to enrich and engage community through brave contemporary theatre. SLAC is dedicated to producing, commissioning and developing new works and to supporting a community of professional artists. SLAC has been nationally recognized by the Shubert Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Edgerton Foundation, among others. SLAC operates under a STP Actors Equity Association contract. SLAC is a Constituent Member of Theatre Communications Group, a national organization for non-profit professional regional theatres, and the National New Play Network.

Published in Blog & News
Wednesday, 27 August 2014 17:34

2014-2015 Season Press Release

PRESS CONTACT: CYNTHIA FLEMING | 801.363.7522 |

August 14, 2014
For Immediate Release

Salt Lake Acting Company's 2014-2015 Season
Reflects New Mission Statement to Engage and Enrich Community
Through Brave, Contemporary Theatre

Salt Lake Acting Company (SLAC), with renewed energy and excitement for the future, announces a new, community-centered mission statement as it launches its 44th season of brave, contemporary theatre.

SLAC's Executive Leadership and Board of Trustees recognized the need to revise and simplify the organization's mission to get right to the heart of why the Salt Lake Acting Company exists. Following invigorating and focused conversation at a retreat this past spring, SLAC's leaders have released the company's new mission statement: to engage and enrich community through brave, contemporary theatre.
This new, community-centered mission will be reflected in SLAC's 2014-2015 season, which in addition to the vibrant work onstage, will also cultivate more and deeper partnerships with area non-profits, schools, and community centers. Now more than ever, SLAC recognizes the rich and dynamic culture that exists here in Utah, and is proud to invest and play a role in its continued growth. It's an exciting time to be in Salt Lake City and an exciting time to be at SLAC.

The 2014-2015 season opens with I'LL EAT YOU LAST: A CHAT WITH SUE MENGERS by Tony Award-winning playwright John Logan. Hailed as the first female "super-agent," Sue Mengers was the talk of the entertainment industry, representing the likes of Barbra Streisand, Steve McQueen, and Cher. This one-woman show, starring Utah favorite Camille Van Wagoner and directed by Robin Wilks-Dunn will run September 17 – October 26, 2014. SLAC invites audiences into Sue's glamorous living room for an evening of dish and dirty secrets.

For more information on I'LL EAT YOU LAST: A CHAT WITH SUE MENGERS click here...


RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN by Obie Award-winning playwright Gina Gionfriddo and directed by Adrianne Moore, will run October 22 – November 16, 2014. After graduate school, Catherine and Gwen chose polar opposite paths. Catherine built a career as a rock star academic, while Gwen built a home with her husband and children. This sharp-witted comedy takes an unflinching look at gender politics and asks, 'Can any woman have it all?'

For more information on RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN click here...

SLAC will work on behalf of its youngest audiences with its sixth annual professional children's production, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD with book and lyrics by Willie Reale, music by Robert Reale, and based on the ever-popular books by Arnold Lobel. Two best friends celebrate and rejoice in their differences that make them unique and special. A story of a friendship that endures, weathering all seasons, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD will be directed by Penny Caywood and will run December 5 – 27, 2014. Part vaudeville, part make-believe, all charm.

For more information on A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD click here...


TWO STORIES by local playwright Elaine Jarvik was one of the 5 plays workshopped in SLAC's New Play Sounding Series (NPSS) during the 2013/14 Season. Jarvik said, "Nothing beats hearing your work read by good actors in front of a real, unbiased audience willing to stay afterwards to dissect what they've heard. By hearing the words out loud, by watching how the audience reacted, by listening to their questions and suggestions, I learned what worked and what didn't. This is how new plays get better." After its development last season in NPSS, SLAC has committed to ensuring the continued life of this play, presenting its World Premiere, directed by Keven Myhre, February 4 – March 1, 2015. Jodi is a struggling journalist eager to keep her job in a changing economy. When a Pakistani family moves in next door, Jodi gets more than just a great story. TWO STORIES is an exploration of diverse landscapes, including economic rise and fall, sensationalism and honesty, how we navigate the growing diversity and lingering stereotypes in our communities, and more intimately, how identity is bridged between generations.

For more information on TWO STORIES click here...

SLAC's commitment to new plays continues as it celebrates spring with the World Premiere of a 'sort of' romantic comedy, MR. PERFECT by William Missouri Downs. SLAC is proud to welcome Downs back to Utah after previously working with him on last season's hit, THE EXIT INTERVIEW. Directed by John Caywood and running April 8 – May 5, 2015, MR. PERFECT tells the story of a quirky flight attendant and romance novel junkie who thinks she's met Mr. Perfect. When it doesn't work out, she sets out to connect the random events that make up life, hoping to find the meaning of it all.

For more information on MR. PERFECT click here...

And of course, no SLAC season would be complete without SATURDAY'S VOYEUR, created by Allen Nevins & Nancy Borgenicht, two of Salt Lake City's most celebrated playwrights, and directed and choreographed by Cynthia Fleming. SATURDAY'S VOYEUR 2015 will shake up Salt Lake June 24 – August 30, 2015. This annual musical satire connects SLAC to the community like nothing else. SLAC is the only theatre company in the nation that presents a new play written for us, about us, each year.

For more information on SATURDAY'S VOYEUR 2015 click here...

With its renewed commitment to community, SLAC's 2014/15 Season will promote theatre and the arts in Utah through a variety of programs, several being the first of their kind in the region. SLAC strives to promote theatre, literature, and art to students from kindergarten to university. SLAC's arts education programs include:

Title I Matinee Program:

SLAC believes in the power of the arts to enhance children's literacy, educational performance, and interest in learning. A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD will include eight free matinee performances for over 1,400 Title I schoolchildren. As school curriculums continue to narrow at the expense of the arts, SLAC's free performances provide a live theatrical experience to academically at-risk schoolchildren who often lack access to opportunities as basic as field trips and arts exposure. SLAC will also offer discounted performances for non-Title I schools; literary partnerships with the Salt Lake City Public Library and local bookstores; an online study guide available for schools and students as they prepare for their visits; and collaborations with local organizations and sponsors.
University Professional Theatre Program: For the past two years Salt Lake Acting Company's University Professional Theatre Program (UPTP) has provided the opportunity for over two dozen students from Utah universities to contribute to productions on a professional scale through both performing roles and technical theatre positions. UPTP was developed through the recognition that SLAC had the resources to offer more to students than ticket discounts and internships. Rather, a paid, working experience would allow for tangible exposure to their craft and the chance for students to build a professional resume before even graduating. SLAC has cultivated working relationships with theatre programs from the following schools: University of Utah, Weber State University, Utah Valley University, and Utah State University.

SLAC has always been dedicated to nurturing the work of local theatre artists and providing a home for both new and established playwrights. More recently, Salt Lake Acting Company has created a landscape for local audiences to access a more in-depth exploration of the work. SLAC's programs that continue to elevate the theatre experience for those on both sides of the curtain include:

New Play Sounding Series:

Free and open to the public, the NPSS is an essential component of the SLAC season: four to five staged readings of new plays, each tied to the current production and/or playwright. Celebrating its 20th year, the NPSS gives playwrights an essential testing ground in which to see their work in progress, and involves SLAC's audience in the dynamic process of new play development. The NPSS has workshopped over 70 plays, with nearly 50 percent going on to main stage productions at SLAC and other regional and national theatre companies.

Green Room Gallery:

SLAC maintains an active gallery, showcasing and selling the work of local visual artists in rotating exhibitions inspired by and tied thematically to productions on stage Curated for each play, the Green Room Gallery is a space for local artists to exhibit their work and for SLAC's audiences to reinforce the themes they see onstage. The 2014-2015 season will include work from Terence K. Stephens, Tricia Forsey Terry (TSquared Art), and Stephanie Swift (Pretty Little Pixel).

Discount ticket programs: SLAC's Student and Under 30 ticket programs are designed to meet varying financial needs of these demographic groups, and are the foundation of the company's efforts to create deeper connections with young audiences, making live theatre more accessible. This program has helped SLAC reach a larger, more diverse audience by making theatre more affordable to a younger demographic. SLAC has seen an immense period of growth over the past few seasons and these young theatre-goers are an important part of SLAC's continued vision.

Free discussion programs and performance:

Free and open to the public, these Sunday post-matinee discussions engage our audience with the director, cast, artistic crew, and whenever possible, the playwright. They examine issues and themes particular to each production and help place the relevance and tone of each play. One of the longest-running programs for SLAC, these discussions encourage thoughtful conversation among the audience and SLAC staff and artists.

Panel Discussions:

SLAC offers free panel discussions in conjunction with productions onstage, open to the public and featuring scholars and experts from the community whose work ties directly to themes raised in productions. Holding between 2-4 panel discussions each season, SLAC hosts experts and scholars to share their thoughts on the issues raised in each production. These discussions invite collaborative conversation with the audience as well. The Utah Humanities Council and KUER partner with SLAC during these discussions, which are well attended and create rich dialogue that connects themes from the stage to contemporary life.

In addition to these established community programs and partnerships, Salt Lake Acting Company is proud to announce the following new programs, reinforcing its commitment to playwrights in our community and beyond:

Playwrights' Lab at SLAC is a new program dedicated solely to the development of new scripts. With David Kranes at the helm, and modeled after the Sundance Playwrights' Lab, which he founded, the Playwrights' Lab at SLAC will take a good play, and through exploring and opening the playwright's vision, help make it stronger, deeper, and more of the play it had hoped to be when first conceived.

The David Ross Fetzer Foundation for Emerging Artists honors the memory of SLAC's dear friend and collaborator, David Fetzer. SLAC is proud to partner with the Foundation to offer a grant that will provide a playwright 35 years of age or younger with a week-long opportunity to develop their script with professional actors and a director, culminating in a reading on SLAC's stage August 31, 2015.

Tanner Humanities Center presents their 2015 Artist in Residence, celebrated playwright Tony Kushner, for a 3-day residency and public lecture at Kingsbury Hall on February 5, 2015. To celebrate Mr. Kushner's residency, SLAC will present a reading of his 5 short plays, Tiny Kushner on February 2, 2015 at 7pm.

This is a rich and exciting time to reaffirm support in SLAC's mission and to continue to be inspired by what is possible in the arts. For some, it is the perfect time to visit SLAC's historical space in the Marmalade Neighborhood for the first time... it is more alive than ever.

SLAC NOTES

Salt Lake Acting Company deeply thanks their many season subscribers, without whom this theatre's work would not be possible.

Season tickets are available. For tickets call 801-363-7522, visit www.saltlakeactingcompany.org, or come to the box office at 168 West 500 North, Salt Lake City, Utah 84103.

SLAC is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 professional theatre founded in 1970 and is dedicated to producing, commissioning and developing new works and to supporting a community of professional artists. SLAC has been nationally recognized by the Shubert Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Edgerton Foundation, among others. SLAC operates under a STP Actors Equity Association contract. SLAC is a Constituent Member of Theatre Communications Group, a national organization for non-profit professional regional theatres, and the National New Play Network.

 

Published in Blog & News
Tuesday, 19 August 2014 08:29

A Year with Frog and Toad

Book and Lyrics by Willie Reale

Music by Robert Reale

Based on the Books by Arnold Lobel 

Tony Nominated 

December 5 - December 27, 2014

Directed by Penny Caywood

Featuring performances by Jenessa Bowen, Amelia Rose Moore, Terry Lee McGriff, Logan Tarantino, and Nate Waite

Description

SLAC will work on behalf of its youngest audiences with its sixth annual professional children's production, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD with book and lyrics by Willie Reale, music by Robert Reale, and based on the ever-popular books by Arnold Lobel. Two best friends celebrate and rejoice in their differences that make them unique and special. A story of a friendship that endures, weathering all seasons, A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD will be directed by Penny Caywood and will run December 5 – 27, 2014. Part vaudeville, part make-believe, all charm.

Cast & Creative

Jenessa-Bowen-Headshot-150-PixJENESSA BOWEN (Mouse)

Jenessa is back for her fourth production at SLAC! She was last seen as Gayle God-zicka & Dead Docent in SATURDAYS VOYEUR 2014, "Thing 2" in THE CAT IN THE HAT last December, and Sister Docent in SATURDAYS VOYEUR 2013. More past credits include; Ruby in SHELTER (Off-Broadway debut), Little Red in INTO THE WOODS (Centerpoint Legacy), Natalie in NEXT TO NORMAL (Ziegfeld Theatre), Adelaide in GUYS AND DOLLS (Ziegfeld), Annabel Glick in LUCKY STIFF (WSU, Irene Ryan nominee & semi-finalist for Irene Ryan competition in LA), Sara in PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK (WSU, Irene Ryan nominee) Jolene in DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS (Ziegfeld), Peggy Swift in FATHER OF THE BRIDE (Hale Centre Theatre), Erin in RING OF FIRE (Dark Horse Theatre Co.), Nehebka in AIDA (Rodgers Memorial), Mary Lennox in THE SECRET GARDEN (Rodgers), Anybodys in WEST SIDE STORY (Rodgers), Adele in JANE EYRE (HCT), Lulu in NUPTIALS (HCT), and you may also recognize Jenessa from the KSL "Hi Monday" commercial. Jenessa has earned her Bachelors of Science in Musical Theatre from Weber State University. "A HUGE thank you to everyone at SLAC. You have all given me a giant step and an open door towards my career as an actor. Love you guys!"

Amelia-Rose-Moore-Headshot-150-PizxAMELIA ROSE MOORE (Turtle)

Amelia is excited to be in her first show at SLAC! Amelia is a senior studying Musical Theatre at Weber State University under Jim Chritstian. Amelia was most recently seen in Mary Poppins at Hale Centre Theatre in West Valley, and as a performer in Simple Joys at Lagoon. Some of her favorite roles include Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, Christabelle in The Plain Princess (world premiere), and Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun. Amelia is excited to share the stage with such talented people, and to work with Penny again. "Thanks to my mom for being a full-time chauffer to nonstop lessons, and to my friends and family for their support, and to the production team for the opportunity to work on such a delightful show. Enjoy!"

Terry-Lee-Mcgriff-Headshot-150-PixTERRY LEE MCGRIFF (Snail)

Terry is elated to be making his Salt Lake Acting Company debut! Previous credits include Harpo in THE COLOR PURPLE (Wasatch Theatre Company), Hanschen in SPRING AWAKENING (Midvale Main Street Theatre), Rod in AVENUE Q (Babcock Theatre) and Jonas Fogg/Ensemble in SWEENEY TODD (Studio 115). Thanks to Penny, Cynthia, and Keven for this wonderful opportunity and to Jaten for your constant love and support!

Logan-Tarantino-Headshot-150-PixLOGAN TARANTINO (Frog)

Logan is ecstatic to make his Salt Lake Acting Company debut! Logan is a graduate from the Actor Training Program at the University of Utah. Recent roles include Lysander in Salt Lake Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Jean-Michel in The Grand Theatre's La Cage Aux Folles and Steve in Plan-B Theatre Company's Adam and Steve and the Empty Sea. He would like to thank his family, friends, professors, and SLAC!

Nathan-Waite-Headshot-150-PixNATE WAITE (Toad)

Nate is thrilled to be apart of his first production at SLAC especially with such an amazing cast and crew! Nate has most recently been seen in the role of Cain in Children of Eden, other memorable roles include Huck Finn in Big River, Javert in Les Miserable, and Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls. "Dream big and live even bigger!"

 

PENNY CAYWOOD (Director)

This is Penny's fourth children's production at SLAC. Penny started acting at the age of five. Her first role was the Shy Princess in THE KING AND I, she still has the costume to prove it. Her career started early, but her talents were not limited to the stage. She traveled across the country with a youth singing group—The LaMarca American Variety Singers. She sang on children's record, attended math school in Japan, took jazz and tap, played the flute and participated in speech contests. When she was 19, Penny was involved in the creation of a youth theatre company in Palos Verdes, CA called Curtains Up! Locally Penny is best known for her work with the University of Utah's Youth Theatre where she has been the director for the past seven years. She has directed every U Youth Theatre production and is responsible for educational and outreach programming too. Penny has directed at Rogers Memorial Theatre and SLAC.

CYNTHIA FLEMING (Executive Producer)

Cynthia has been in the world of dance and theatre professionally for over 35 years, during which time she performed in the Broadway, National, and International companies of A CHORUS LINE. In 1978, as a U of U Theatre student, her performing relationship with SLAC began. Since 1995 she has worn many hats at SLAC, including Choreographer, Director, Box Office Manager, and Director of Audience Services. She conceived and created the position of Director of Communication and Audience Development and assembled a communication team which generated renewed energy and excitement before taking on her current title of Executive Producer. Cynthia remains a working artist in the theatre and has choreographed SATURDAY'S VOYEUR for 14 years and has directed for three years. She has choreographed many SLAC productions including THE PERSIAN QUARTER, GO, DOG. GO! BAT BOY THE MUSICAL, AND WATER LILIES from CABBIES, COWBOYS, AND THE TREE OF THE WEEPING VIRGIN. Cynthia is proud to serve SLAC and its mission to develop and produce vital new work.

KEVEN MYHRE (Executive Producer)

In his 19th season with the company, Keven manages all production aspects of the plays SLAC presents. He received the Mayor's Artist Award in the Performing Arts category in 2009 and was awarded the 2008 City Weekly Award for directing THE CLEAN HOUSE and MOONLIGHT AND MAGNOLIAS; he most recently directed BLOODY, BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON and RED. Having previously served as Producing Director as well as Resident Designer, and he has designed all of SLAC's sets and many of the costumes for the last 17 years. He has also designed sets for the Grand Theatre, Sundance Theatre, Pioneer Memorial Theatre, Utah Musical Theatre, the Egyptian Theatre, Kingsbury Hall and the Babcock Theatre. His work for the Utah Arts Festival includes site design for the 20th Anniversary celebration. Keven earned his BFA at the University of Utah and his MFA in Theatre at the University of Michigan.

Press & Reviews

A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD - Press Release | Read Full Press Release Here | November 14, 2014

Getting into Theatre with Penny Caywood | Utah Theatre Bloggers |Watch Video Interview Here | November 26, 2014

A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD - Inside Look | Utah Theatre Bloggers | Watch Video Interview Here | November 26, 2014

Salt Lake Acting Company: A Year With Frog & Toad - Gavin's Underground | City Weekly | Read Full Article Here | December 4, 2014

Theater review: 'A Year with Frog and Toad' at SLAC is fanciful and expertly staged | Deseret News | Read Full Article Here | December 8, 2014

You simply must see Salt Lake Acting Company's A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD | Is This Really My Life? - Emily Hill | Read Full Article Here | December 8, 2014

A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD | The White House - Susie Q | Read Full Article Here | December 11, 2014

A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD | A Utah Mom's Life| Read Full Article Here | December 9, 2014

Two Holiday Productions Show The Advantages of Keeping it Un-real | City Weekly | Read Full Article Here |  December 10, 2014

Schoolchildren find the joy of live musical theater in Salt Lake Acting Company's 'Frog and Toad' | Salt Lake Tribune | Read Full Article Here | December 12, 2014

Published in 2014-2015 Season
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