ABT Launches MASK RELIEF EFFORT!

By Brad York
March 23, 2020

Known for its commitment to community and active engagement efforts over the years, Arizona Broadway Theatre will launch a MASK RELIEF EFFORT to supply medical masks to healthcare workers during this much needed time.

The theatre has called upon all sewers and crafters within the community to assist and organize a volunteer effort to provide aid for the immediate need of face masks – both locally and nationally. Representatives from ABT have contacted a number of healthcare organizations directly in Washington, Colorado, New York and right here in Arizona to assess the need. The volunteer effort is being lead by ABT Costume Director & Resident Designer, Lottie Dixon. A number Costume Shop staff will also be volunteering their time and effort.

“We might not be able to produce theatre right now, but this we can do,” said Artistic Producer, Cassandra Klaphake. “During this dark time at the theatre we can bring some light – some help – to those on the front-line. ABT can help – and we will!”

WAYS THE COMMUNITY CAN HELP:
1) Donate materials: the theatre is in need of ¼ inch, ⅛ inch or round elastic, and lightweight cotton or cotton/poly blend fabric. Materials can be dropped-off at ABT’s main entrance at: 7701 W Paradise Ln. in Peoria (place at the foot of front doors – staff will collect)

2) Sew from home:  the community is encouraged to use their own material where they can. Guidelines for sanctioned fabrics and construction can be found at: https://www.deaconess.com/How-to-make-a…/Documents-Mask/Mask,  or by watching the instruction video found here: https://youtu.be/9tBg0Os5FWQ

3) Assemble Kits (to be sewn by others): the theatre is putting together individual mask assembly kits. For information on getting an assembly kit, contact lottie@azbroadway.org to arrange pick-up of supplies and instructions

All assembled masks and kits can be returned directly to Arizona Broadway Theatre for distribution. Again, please contact lottie@azbroadway.org for times and availability.

ABT Awards $1,500 Scholarship To Arizona Young Artists’ Competition Performer

By Maddy Dowler

ABT winner, Isabella Brown with ABT Executive Producer, Kiel Klaphake

On February 22, 2020, The 21st Annual Arizona Young Artists’ Competition, presented by Herberger Theater Center (HTC) and Center Dance Ensemble, was held on Stage West at Herberger Theater Center in downtown Phoenix. Talented youth, ages 15-20, competed in the disciplines of Acting, Dance, Musical Theatre Voice and Classical Voice.  Arizona Broadway Theatre (ABT) partnered with Herberger Theater Center to sponsor an additional $1,500 scholarship that was awarded to Isabella Brown. Isabella was chosen by a panel of ABT judges and has been offered an opportunity to perform with one of ABT’s professional cast in an upcoming “Broadway Series” Mainstage production.

The winner in each area received a $1,500 scholarship to help further their education in the arts. Nine awards and almost $8,000 in scholarships were presented to recognize the outstanding talent of these young artists. The audience in attendance voted for their favorite performers in the People’s Choice category. This event was presented with the support of National Society of Arts & Letters, Greater Arizona Chapter.

Brody Wurr, member of ABT’s HyRev and winner of Musical Theatre category.

The winner of the Judges’ Choice Award in the Musical Theatre category was Brody Wurr. Brody is 17 years old and has been involved in musical theatre since 2014 having starred as Avery Arable in Musical Theatre Anthem’s production of Charlotte’s Web. Since 2014, Brody has honed his skills at Arizona Broadway Theatre in a number of “Broadway Series” Mainstage shows. His first show at ABT was Oliver! in 2017 and he has appeared in eight shows in total – most recently Sweeney Todd and Elf The Musical. Brody is currently a member of HyRev, ABT’s teen performance troupe.

HyRev is specifically for young performers ages 13-19 with some previous music theatre/dance/show choir experience. The program includes two performance troupes: HyperToneZ (advanced troupe) and Sonic Revolution (elite troupe) – both built upon and improve participants’ performance strengths and include Valley-wide performances (with future out-of-area performances as time and scheduling allow).

“Promoting arts education, performance opportunities and personal growth is what’s most important to us at ABT,” said Artistic Producer, Cassandra Klaphake. “This is why we have the programs we do and why we provide the additional scholarship to the Arizona Young Artists’ Competition. We are thrilled for winner, Isabella Brown, and look forward to seeing her on ABT’s Mainstage in the season to come!”

Here is the complete list of winners of the 21st Annual Arizona Young Artists’ Competition.

People’s Choice:

Musical Theatre – Isabella Brown

Dance – Emma Noel

Acting – Aydan Bruce

Classical Voice:

Lily Grubert

Arizona Broadway Theatre Award:

Isabella Brown

Judges’ Choice:

Musical Theatre – Brody Wurr

Dance – Serah Nicodimus

Acting – Kendra Richards

Classical Voice – Lily Grubert

Photos by Apatrou Photography

ABT Raises Over $140,000 in Support of Artistic & Educational Programming At 7th Annual Broadway Ball

By Maddy Dowler

Arizona Broadway Theatre’s (ABT) 7th Annual Broadway Ball was a spectacular affair overflowing with champagne, chandeliers, guests wearing their very best, live performances, and loads of fun! ABT’s annual event brought out over 300 attendees on Saturday, February 29, 2020, and raised over $140,000 in support of the theatre’s artistic and educational programs. The festivities included a live auction featuring a Viking River Cruise, Sedona “Cool Down” summer get-away, an exclusive in-home dinner for eight featuring ABT’s talented culinary and service team, a silent auction, the all-new “Bubbles & Barrels” sparkling wine and whiskey tasting experience, “Gift Card Frenzy,” and the very popular “Wine Pull.”

Executive Producer Kiel & Artistic Producer Cassandra Klaphake, Brad York, Director of Marketing & Development, Susan Casper, Host of Sonoran Living with husband Sidney

Co-emceeing with Brad York, ABT’s Director of Marketing & Development, was Susan Casper, host of ABC15’s Sonoran Living. Susan joined ABC15 in 2008 as an anchor and reporter before moving to Sonoran Living, the longest-running television lifestyle show in Phoenix. Susan is an executive board member of Dress for Success Phoenix and a founding member of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Phoenix Metropolitan Chapter. Susan and Brad used an interview-style format with ABT co-founders and Executive & Artistic Producers Kiel & Cassandra Klaphake as well as Associate Artistic Director Kurtis Overby to give Broadway Ball attendees an “insiders” look at the theatre’s mission, vision, educational plans & goals, artistic successes stories, and its influence and impact in Arizona and on the national stage.

Not only was the night informational and inspirational, it was also filled with spectacular music from ABT’s Mainstage shows. The cast of La Cage aux Folles kicked-off the program portion of the evening performing the show’s opening number and the evening wrapped-up with the talented Tiffany Sparks and Liz Fallon, leads in ABT next Mainstage offering, Chicago (Mar 13 – Apr 19), impressing the audience with “Nowadays” and “Hot Honey Rag” from the show.

HyRev, ABT’s teen performance troupe, brought the house down with their high-energy renditions of “Cross the Line” from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical Bring It On and “A Million Dreams” from the film The Greatest Showman. The versatile group also performed a memorable version of Aerosmith’s “Dream On.” HyRev teens will benefit specifically from the $16,000 raised for scholarships to help defray the cost of employing the youth in the Mainstage shows for which they will audition and be cast.

HyRev troupe members L to R: Brody Wurr, Alyssa Armstrong, Liv-Boscardin, Jack Yampolsky, Tristan & Kieran-Klaphake

“The theme of this year’s Ball was ‘Raising the stars of tomorrow!’ said Brad York, Dir. of Marketing & Development. “Be it the next big Broadway star or the next star in the classroom, boardroom, on Wall Street or in the ER, ABT’s Academy for Young Performers and HyRev programs provide pre-teen and teen youth with not only the skills to become the best singers, actors and dancers they can be, but also, practical life-learning skills such as self-expression, team building, and critical thinking – quite simply, becoming the best human beings they can be!”

Corporate sponsors for the evening included “Tony Award” sponsors A.L.S.REM, Arrowhead Cadillac, Midwestern University, New Valley Construction, and Renew Dental; “42nd Street” sponsors The Jason Mitchell Real Estate Group, Red Bird Farms, Sun Health, Peoria Mayor Cathy Carlat, Warren & Delores Huebner, and Birt & Louisa Kellam. Table sponsorships for this year’s Broadway Ball reached record numbers, which was vital in assuring the success of the event.

Group Bonding at Arizona Broadway Theatre

We love groups here at Arizona Broadway Theatre!

So, MEET UP. HAVE FUN. SAVE MONEY.

Book a discounted package for your group of 12 or more! Dazzle your friends and family with great entertainment, or treat your clients and employees to a fabulous night out!

3 EASY STEPS TO BOOKING

Choose Your Show

Pick Your Performance

Matinees: 12:00pm dining, 2:00pm curtain
Evenings: 5:30pm dining, 7:30pm curtain

Book Your Reservation

Call 623-374-6092 OR email groups@azbroadway.org  OR CLICK HERE

Please note that all requests are subject to availability, and ABT reserves the right to add, remove, or change performance dates as needed.

Payment : Call 623-374-6092 or email our Group Coordinator for special pricing. Payment Plans available.

REVIEW BROCHURE

Some restrictions apply. Pricing may vary depending on show title and availability.

Announcing the Cast of ‘The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’ ‘Off Broadway at the ENCORE’

The much-anticipated hit is on its way and the cast has begun rehearsals!

Here’s the cast!

Keilani Akagi (Marcy Park)

Pierre Brookins (Mitch Mahoney)

Cassie Chilton (Logainne “Schwartzy” Schwartzandgrubenierre)

Bennett Curran (Leaf Coneybear)

Alyssa Gardner (Olive Ostrovsky)

Kira Galindo (Rona Lisa Peretti)

Nicholas Hambruch (William Barfee)

Charlie Rabago (Charlito “Chip” Tolentino)

Tim Shawver (Vice Principal Douglas Panch)

Buy tickets HERE!

Actors’ Equity Night Out To ‘La Cage aux Folles’ at Herberger Theater Center

Local members of the Actors’ Equity Association will be coming together for Equity Night Out on March 8th, at 7pm to attend the Arizona Broadway Theatre (ABT) production of La Cage Aux Folles at the Herberger Theater Center. Actors’ Equity Association (“Equity”), is the U.S. labor union that represents more than 51,000 professional Actors and Stage Managers. Equity fosters the art of live theatre as an essential component of society and advances the careers of its members by negotiating wages, improving working conditions and providing a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans.

ABT has continued their commitment to Actors’ Equity, and to hiring local artists for their Mainstage, Encore Room, and Herberger productions. They will be offering a discount code to Equity members for this performance.

La Cage aux Folles is Jerry Herman’s (Mame, Hello, Dolly!) 6-time Tony Award-winning production that tells the story of Jean-Michel and Anne who are newly engaged, and now her strait-laced parents want to meet his. The only problem? His birth-mother is out of the picture, his dad owns a drag nightclub, and his mom is the star of the show! Jean-Michel wants just one night with his parents playing it “straight” to impress Anne’s parents. What’s Albin to do? Based on the original 1973 French play of the same name, and later the hit motion picture The Birdcage starring Robin Williams and Nathan Lane, the ground-breaking La Cage aux Folles celebrates performers, the LGBT community, and non-traditional families. The show also features two Equity artists, Michael Ursua who plays Albin/Zaza and Seth Tucker, a local member, in the role of Jacob.

La Cage Aux Folles
March 8th | 7:00pm
Herberger Theater Center
222 E Monroe St., Phoenix

To find out more information and receive the discount code please email: actingupseries@gmail.com

ABT’s Own Josh Condon and Lexy Romano to Perform at ‘Sunday Brunch at the ENCORE’

You may not know Josh Condon by looking at him, but you have definitely seen his talents in action! As Resident Music Director for Arizona Broadway Theatre, Josh Condon arranges and oversees all the music for ABT’s productions. Currently the conductor for Chicago: The Musical, he most recently conducted Elf: The Musical, My Way, and An American in Paris. Elsewhere in town, he is Music Director/Conductor for Xavier/Brophy College Preparatory’s Theatre Arts Department. A versatile jazz and classical pianist, Josh has performed everything from piano concertos with symphony orchestras to jazz piano of all styles. Last year, Josh premiered his own show, A Tribute to Oscar Peterson at Phoenix’s premier jazz club, The Nash.

Previous credits as Music Director include Scottsdale Arts (The World Goes ‘Round), Xavier/Brophy Theatre (Seussical, The Music Man), Arizona State University (Legally Blonde, Shrek), Cider Mill Playhouse (The Drowsy Chaperone), and Norwegian Cruise Line (Rock of Ages).  Josh’s career has taken him worldwide as a Music Director/Pianist with the Norwegian, Celebrity, and Princess Cruise Lines, where he collaborated with numerous West End and Broadway performers. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies from Ithaca College and a Master’s degree in Musical Theatre/Opera Music Direction from Arizona State University.

Lexy is a singer, actress, host and reporter who is originally from southern California. She has lived and worked in New York City, and has traveled the world singing on cruise ships and as a member of the USO show troupe. She has also performed off-Broadway in New York City and has opened for top-name artists such as Katy Perry and Tim McGraw. Lexy originated a lead role in Stephen Schwartz’s Magic to Do for Princess Cruises and Orchid the Show in Miami, and most recently performed as a lead in the ABBA MANIA national tour. Lexy also performs regularly for Steve Beyer Productions at all the Mastro’s Steakhouse locations in Scottsdale, and all over the country with the San Diego-based Liquid Blue Band. After initially having met on a Princess cruise ship, Lexy and Josh married in June 2018.  Collectively, the couple has visited over three dozen countries as performers, and were seen together most recently in Arizona and Florida performing in the roles of Agnetha and Benny for TAD Management’s AbbaFab show. Lexy is also the founder and host of Phoenix Finds​, a social media show exploring the best of Phoenix. Find her on Instagram: @phx_finds.

Josh and Lexy will come together to perform at ABT’s Sunday Brunch at the ENCORE on Sunday, March 29, 2020. What better way to spend a Sunday morning than with friends and family and the delicious aromas of freshly baked bread, an array of delicious entrées, and desserts all while enjoying lyrical songstress, Lexy Romano, and virtuoso pianist, Josh Condon? They will perform a concert of pop favorites and Jazz standards that engages audiences with the mind and heart, paying tribute to the songs and the artists that inspired them to pursue a life of performing.

Bar service starts at 10:00am featuring Mimosas and Bloody Marys and will be available throughout the event.

You can learn more about Josh Condon HERE and Lexy Romano HERE.

Reservations are required; please contact the Box Office by calling 623.776.8400 or ONLINE to book yours today.

Announcing the cast of ‘Chicago’ at Arizona Broadway Theatre

The cast for Chicago is in the building! Monday was their first day of rehearsals and things are already falling into place nicely. Introducing…

 

 

 

Velma Kelly………………………………………………………………………………………..Tiffany Sparks
Roxie Hart…………………………………………………………………………………………………Liz Fallon
Fred Casely………………………………………………………………………………………….Daniel Miller
Sergeant Fogarty……………………………………………………………………………………….Danny Durr
Amos Hart……………………………………………………………………………………………..Andy Meyers
Liz…………………………………………………………………………………………………Selena Robinson
Annie…………………………………………………………………………………………………Samantha Ross
June………………………………………………………………………………………………..Kristina Huegel
Hunyak……………………………………………………………………………………………..Rebecca Shulla
Mona………………………………………………………………………………………………..Meghan Deeley
Martin Harrison……………………………………………………………………………………Robert Garris
Matron “Mama” Morton………………………………………………………………………….Kiani Nelson
Billy Flynn…………………………………………………………………………………………..Kiel Klaphake
Mary Sunshine………………………………………………………………………………………Lucas Brady
Go-To-Hell Kitty…………………………………………………………………………………Alyssa Ishihara
Aaron…………………………………………………………………………………………………Daniel Stanley
The Judge……………………………………………………………………………………………John Cavaseno
Court Clerk……………………………………………………………………………..Christopher Salvaggio
Ensemble………………………………………………………………………………………………Caleb Albert

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