Ithaca Hanger Theater / Theatre Archives

Hangar Theatre Announces 2007 Mainstage Season

This summer, five professional productions—a hit Broadway drama, two beloved musicals, a world-premiere plucked from the history books, and a comedic send-up of the classics—will make up the Hangar Theatre’s 2007 Mainstage Season. From June 6th to September 2nd, the Hangar will present Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Hair, Bleeding Kansas, All the Great Books (abridged), and a recent hit Broadway drama still to be announced.

According to Artistic Director, Kevin Moriarty, it’s a season unlike any in the theatre’s 33-year history. “For the first time we’re presenting two large, classic musicals in one season, as well as a world premiere drama, an incredibly silly, witty and engaging comedy, and a recent hit Broadway play that we can’t announce until February 1,” enthuses Moriarty.

The season kicks off on June 6th with the regional premiere of a recent Broadway play from an award-winning playwright. “We’re excited to be the first theater in the region to share this exciting play, fresh from its Broadway run, with our audience,” explains Moriarty. “Unfortunately, we can’t announce the title until February 1. All I can say is that this script features beautiful writing, complicated and compelling characters, and a surprising story. I’m certain our audience will be fully engaged by this wonderful play.”

From June 21st to July 7th, the Hangar asks families to be their guest, as it presents the enchanting Broadway musical classic, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Associate Artistic Director Wendy Dann will direct this magical musical, based on the award-winning animated film. “The timeless story of young Belle—a voracious reader who yearns for adventure—and the lonely Beast who must learn to find beauty beyond appearances has delighted children for years. Young audiences will rejoice in seeing their favorite characters live on stage, while adult audiences will take pleasure in the Hangar’s ability to approach each musical from a fresh perspective,” says Dann. “The Hangar’s history of reinterpreting classic musicals like Cats continues with Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.” With captivating characters and award-winning songs by Alan Menken, Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast will have the young and the young at heart humming along both in and out of the theatre.

Beginning July 12th, the Hangar lets the sunshine in with a three-week run of the one and only “American Tribal Love Rock Musical.” Even though the award winning musical was originally produced on Broadway in 1968, Moriarty thinks the time has never been better for the Hangar to let down its Hair. “Written at a time when the nation was fighting an unpopular war oversees while battles over family values, sexuality, equal rights and patriotism raged at home, Hair is one of the most unique, celebrated, and important works in musical theatre history,” he explains. “I’m thrilled to engage a new generation of audiences with this vibrant, joyful, confrontational rock musical, which promises to be more surprising, bracing and energetic than any show I’ve directed.” With a script from James Rado and Gerome Ragni and music by Galt MacDermot, Hair continues to provide an irreverent stab at the status quo almost forty years later.

The Mainstage Season continues with a world premiere drama set on America’s great frontier. From August 1st to the 11th, Bleeding Kansas will take audiences back to 1856 and a hard-livin’, hard-drinkin’ time before Kansas became a state. As homesteading farmers fight the elements to start a new life, a violent battle over ideology explodes around them. Abolitionists and pro-slavery factions descend on the territory, and a fledgling nation takes a dangerous step towards civil war. Moriarty will direct the new script by Kathryn Walat, whose play Know Dog was presented in the Wedge in 2002 and whose play for young audiences, Androcles and the Lion was commissioned and produced the Hangar Theatre as a School Tour production in 2004. “Kate is one of the most dynamic and exciting emerging playwrights working in the American theatre,” Moriarty explains. He sites her compelling voice, witty sense of humor, and empathetic characters as hallmarks of her work. “In this fresh new play, Kate revisits a vital moment in American history to tell an original story about political conviction, moral belief, and love of country, all told with her unique sense of humor, dramatic action and sharp insight into real people,” Moriarty says. “Bleeding Kansas will be a play that will entertain our audiences and have them grappling with and talking about its characters and ideas long after they’ve left the theatre.”

On August 15th, the Hangar finishes up the summer by rummaging through the classics of literature with All the Great Books (abridged). From the creators of two past hit comedies at the Hangar—The Complete Works of Shakespeare (abridged) and The Complete History of America (abridged)—this three-man show is a goofy, prat-fall filled, whirlwind tour of 86 classic books. Moriarty thinks Books will be a perfect ending to a great summer: “Everyone loves a good laugh, and this wacky play, filled with witty puns, fast-paced humor, and audience interaction, will have our audience rolling in the aisles with its wild energy and sharp intelligence.” Equal parts Monty Python, “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?”, and Cliffs Notes, All the Great Books (abridged) will run for three weeks through September 2nd.

Subscription packages for the Hangar Theatre’s 2007 Mainstage Season are currently available by visiting the Hangar Business Office, by calling (607) 273-8588, or by downloading a subscription form at Single tickets for the 2007 Season will go on sale on May 1st at the Ticket Center at Clinton House.

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