Park Square announces “Broadway-inspired” season

Park Square Theatre expands its range and makes ambitious aims with its 2011-2012 season, featuring a total of ten productions on its proscenium stage, and bringing some accomplished local directors to Park Square for the first time. Artistic Director Richard Cook says the season is part of a strategy to help the company build itself up for eventually programming two-stages, for which it is currently in the midst of a capital campaign.

The company released its calendar for the coming year just this morning, which, in addition to its perennial productions of “The Diary of Anne Frank” and “Of Mice and Men” also includes a number of shows that were a hit on Broadway.

The season opens in September with the Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning play, AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY. Leah Cooper directs the dark comedy, which will star Barbra Kingsley (Kinglsey understudied Estelle Parsons on the national tour; this will be the first time she will actually get to play the part for audiences).

In late October Joel Sass (“The 39 Steps” at the Guthrie, “Blithe Spirit” at the Jungle) directs a new version of “Oliver Twist” that combines Dickens’ original text with Victorian music hall tunes.

December heralds a revival of Joseph Vass’ THE SOUL OF GERSHWIN: THE MUSICAL JOURNEY OF AN AMERICAN KLEZMER, starring actor Peter Michael Levin as Gershwin, directed by Peter Moore.

Austene Van and Thomasina Petrus created HOT CHOCOLATE, Park Square’s new musical revue for the holiday season.

The Tony Award-winning musical RAGTIME, directed by Gary Gisselman, opens in January 2012, and will feature the largest cast to ever appear on the theatre’s stage.

In March playwright Carlyle Brown premieres a brand new work, AMERICAN FAMILY, commissioned by Park Square and directed by Marion McClinton.

Ten Thousand Things may have just staged DOUBT, A PARABLE, but Richard Cook has no, well… doubt, that it’s worth seeing again, this time starring Linda Kelsey and directed by Craig Johnson.

The season closes in June with Neil Simon’s comedy LAUGHTER ON THE 23rd FLOOR, directed by Zach Curtis.

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