Tickets now on sale for STOMP, coming to Robinson Center in 2020

STOMP, the international percussion sensation, takes the stage at Robinson Performance Hall for a limited 3 show engagement March 10-12, 2020.

From its beginnings as a street performance in the UK, STOMP has grown into an international sensation over the past 20 years, having performed in more than 50 countries and in front of more than 24 million people. Tickets are on sale available at Celebrity Attractions, by phone at 501.244.8800 or by visiting Ticketmaster.com.

Created by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas, STOMP continues its phenomenal run with four global productions: the ongoing sell-out production at New York’s Orpheum Theatre, a permanent London company, and North American and European tours. Throughout its life, the show has continued to change by creating new material; next year/this year (depending on when release goes out), it will incorporate two new pieces.  It is safe to say you will never again look at supermarket carts  or plumbing fixtures the same way… or paint cans, or kitchen sinks or…

STOMP, an overwhelming success marked by rave reviews, numerous awards, and sell-out engagements, is the winner of an Olivier Award for Best Choreography (London’s Tony Award), a New York Obie Award, a Drama Desk Award for Unique Theatre Experience, and a Special Citation from Best Plays.

In addition to the stage shows, STOMP has been an overwhelming success marked by rave reviews, numerous awards, an Academy Award nomination, four Emmy nominations and one Emmy Award for their acclaimed HBO special Stomp Out Loud, noteworthy TV appearances including The London 2012 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony, The Academy Awards (produced by Quincy Jones), Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, and a series of award-winning international commercials.

The performers “make a rhythm out of anything we can get our hands on that makes a sound,” says co-founder/director Luke Cresswell.  A unique combination of percussion, movement and visual comedy, STOMP has created its own inimitable, contemporary form of rhythmic expression: both household and industrial objects find new life as musical instruments in the hands of an idiosyncratic band of body percussionists.  It is a journey through sound, a celebration of the everyday and a comic interplay of characters wordlessly communicating through dance and drum.

Synchronized stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra, eight Zippo lighters flip open and closed to create a fiery fugue; wooden poles thump and clack in a rhythmic explosion.  STOMP uses everything but conventional percussion instruments – dustbins, tea chests, radiator hoses, boots, hub caps – to fill the stage with a compelling and unique act that is often imitated but never duplicated.

Critics and audiences have raved: “STOMP is as crisp and exuberant as if it had opened yesterday,” says The New York Times. The San Francisco Chronicle declares “STOMP has a beat that just won’t quit!” The Los Angeles Times exclaims: “Electrifying! Triumphs in the infinite variety of the human experience.” “A phenomenal show! Bashing, crashing, smashing, swishing, banging and kicking – a joyous invention!” says the Chicago Tribune.

STOMP will appear at Robinson Performance Hall in Little Rock for three performances only March 10-12, 2020 (Tuesday-Thursday at 7:30pm).  Tickets may be purchased in person at Celebrity Attractions, via phone at 501.244.8800 or online at Ticketmaster.com.  Groups of 10 or more receive a discount by calling 501.492.3312.

Ticket buyers are reminded that for Celebrity Attractions’ productions, Celebrity Attractions and Ticketmaster are the only official retail ticket outlets and the only way to guarantee that you are paying face value for legitimate tickets.  Ticket buyers who purchase tickets from a ticket broker or any third party should also be aware that Celebrity Attractions is unable to reprint or replace lost or stolen tickets and is unable to contact patrons with information regarding time changes or other pertinent updates regarding the performance.

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE – A Live Radio Play opens tonight as Arkansas Rep’s final show of 2019

George Bailey, Clarence, and Mr. Potter all make an appearance as the Arkansas Repertory Theatre presents It’s a Wonderful Life – A Live Radio Play.

After two days of previews, the production opens tonight (December 6) and runs through December 29.

Back by popular demand, this holiday classic returns to The Rep’s stage to close the 2019 season. (It was last on the Rep’s stage in 2008.)

Ring in the holidays with an entertaining spin on a familiar holiday favorite. Set in a 1940s radio station on Christmas Eve, enjoy a live radio version of Frank Capra’s classic 1946 film as the actors on stage transform into dozens of characters from Bedford Falls. Faced with the threat of scandal and financial ruin, George Bailey experiences a crisis of faith and wishes he had never been born. Divine intervention arrives in the form of Clarence (Angel Second Class), who is on a mission to restore George’s will to live… and earn his own wings in the process. Every life impacts countless others, whether we know it or not.

The production is directed by Giovanna Sardelli (whose most recent Arkansas Rep production was The School for Lies). The design team includes Jo Winiarski (set), Sarah Nietfeld (costumes), Jamie Roderick (lighting), and Jane Shaw (sound). The cast includes the return of Larry Daggett and Patrick Halley along with Alan Dronek, Larissa Klinger and Mary Murphy making their Arkansas Rep debuts.

 

Today at noon – Arkansas Rep production of IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE is Clinton School topic

The Arkansas Repertory Theatre’s holiday play – It’s a Wonderful Life is the topic of today’s Clinton School program. It will take place at 12 noon in Sturgis Hall.

Ring in the holidays with an entertaining spin on a familiar holiday favorite. Set in a 1940s radio station on Christmas Eve, enjoy a live radio version of Frank Capra’s classic 1946 film as the actors on stage transform into dozens of characters from Bedford Falls.

Faced with the threat of scandal and financial ruin, George Bailey experiences a crisis of faith and wishes he had never been born. Divine intervention arrives in the form of Clarence (Angel Second Class), who is on a mission to restore George’s will to live and earn his own wings in the process. Every life impacts countless others, whether we know it or not.

Join the Clinton School for a discussion with the cast and crew.

All Clinton School Speaker Series events are free and open to the public. Reserve your seats by emailing publicprograms@clintonschool.uasys.edu or by calling (501) 683-5239.

Bradley Anderson retires after 40 years leading Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre

Longtime Children’s Theatre Artistic Director Bradley D. Anderson will retire at the end of the year. In 40 years as Artistic Director for the Children’s Theatre, Anderson’s leadership and vision has built a theatre company that entertains, educates and engages thousands of Arkansas families, students and teachers every year.

Recognized by The Drama League as one of the best regional theatre companies in America, the Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre is the only professional company in Arkansas that produces children’s literary works for the stage. Since 1979, when the professional company was established under Anderson’s leadership, the Children’s Theatre has been creating exceptional theatre for family audiences.

“I am so proud of the work we’ve done in the Children’s Theatre over the last 40 years,” Anderson said. “I know the Children’s Theatre legacy will continue to flourish for many years to come.”

Anderson wrote, adapted and directed numerous plays in his time at the Children’s Theatre, including crowd-favorite Main Stage shows as well as experimental Studio Shows for young audiences. In 1985, Anderson and the Children’s Theatre participated in the renowned Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, S.C. In 1986, he received the National Governor’s Association Excellence in the Arts Award. Before coming to the Children’s Theatre, Anderson served as the founding director of the County Stearns Theatrical Company in St. Cloud, Minn. and was the Director of Studio Theatre of the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis.

The Children’s Theatre is dedicated to the creation and presentation of high-quality adaptions and original plays for young people and their families. Inspired by classic and contemporary sources, their works provide an honest, relevant, and challenging artistic experience for audiences throughout the state.

“The Children’s Theatre has such a significant impact on youth and families throughout Arkansas – and so much of that is thanks to Bradley’s tireless dedication to creating magical theatre experiences,” Executive Director Victoria Ramirez said. “Thanks to Bradley’s excellent leadership, the Children’s Theatre will continue to be dedicated to providing educational and engaging live theatre for years to come.”

Associate Director Katie Campbell will serve as Interim Artistic Director. Campbell joined the Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre in 2007 as a director, performer and puppet artist. She has performed in and directed numerous shows at the Children’s Theatre. Campbell was the recipient of the 2017 Puppeteers of America Jim Henson Award for Innovation, and her devised and directed shadow puppet play, The Ugly Duckling received a 2015 Jim Henson Foundation Family Grant. She is also a board member of TYA/USA, a national membership organization that strengthens the artistic and cultural impact of theatre for young audiences. Katie earned a Master’s in Directing Theatre for Young People from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Campbell will continue to lead the Children’s Theatre’s creative programming while the MacArthur Park building is under renovation. During the Arts Center’s transition period, Children’s Theatre has expanded its touring program, which has allowed the Arts Center to reach even more students and families across the state with professional, educational live theatre experiences. Through Children’s Theatre on Tour, literary-based theatre productions travel to schools, community centers and libraries across Arkansas. The 2019–2020 Children’s Theatre on Tour season continues this winter with, A Christmas Carol (November 12 – December 20), The Arkansas Story Porch (January 14 – February 28), and The Wind in the Willows (April 7 – May 15). Main Stage shows will resume in the Arkansas Arts Center’s renovated theater in the fall of 2022.

“The Children’s Theatre has an incredible legacy of creating new and inspiring work for youth and families,” Campbell said. “I’m honored to have the opportunity to build on this legacy, and I look forward to envisioning the future of theatre for young audiences with our community.”

Children’s Theatre programming while the Arts Center’s building is under construction is just one piece of the Arts Center’s commitment to remaining accessible to the community while its MacArthur Park building is under construction. The Arts Center is committed to working with cultural partners across the region to expand access to performing and visual art programming while increasing programming reach.

A trio of offerings mark 2020 Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre season

Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre (AST) has announced its 2020 season of professional theatre.

“The 2020 season will feature Shakespeare’s delightful comedy ‘As You Like It,’ the beautiful and intriguing musical ‘Into the Woods’ and the hilarious mashup ‘The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged),’” said Mary Ruth Marotte, AST’s executive director.

Performances will take place on the UCA campus, both in Reynolds Performance Hall and outdoors on the lawn of McAlister Hall.

As she prepares for her ninth year as producing artistic director of AST, Rebekah Scallet said she wanted an exciting repertory season that would capture audiences’ imaginations and challenge them to think about their lives. She chose the three shows in the 2020 season based around the theme “Sweet are the uses of adversity,” a line from “As You Like It.”

Actors, directors, designers and crew members will arrive in Conway in early May 2020 to begin the process of creating the three shows in AST’s 14th season.

“We’ll open the season with ‘The Complete Works’ outdoors on the beautiful lawn of McAlister Hall. Our outdoor venue draws huge crowds, and our audiences look forward to the show and the entire experience of Shakespeare under the stars. We hope that theatre-goers in Arkansas and around the region will recognize AST for its dedication to the cultural and artistic growth that is currently underway in our state,” said Marotte.

The remaining two productions will be performed in UCA’s Reynolds Performance Hall.

Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre is the state’s only professional Shakespeare company and is proud to make its home on the UCA campus. Each summer, AST offers full productions of Shakespeare’s works, as well as other plays and musicals that help fulfill AST’s mission to entertain, engage and enrich the community. For more information, visit arkshakes.com or call (501) 852-0702.

One Month until WICKED returns to Robinson Center

Oz returns to the Rock as the Tony winning musical Wicked returns to Robinson Center Performance Hall from January 1 to January 19 for a three week run.

Based on the best-selling 1995 novel by Gregory Maguire, Wicked, has won a Grammy and three Tony Awards.  Wicked features songs by Stephen Schwartz (Godspell, Pippin, and Working) and a book by Winnie Holzman (“My So Called Life,” “Once And Again” and “thirtysomething”).  It tales the untold story of the witches of Oz.  The musical is directed by multiple Tony Award-winner Joe Mantello (Take Me Out; Assassins; The Receptionist).

Two other girls meet in the Land of Oz.  One – born with emerald-green skin – is smart, fiery and misunderstood.  The other is beautiful, ambitious and very popular.  “Wicked” tells the story of their remarkable odyssey, and how these two unlikely friends grow to become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good.

On Tuesday, January 7th at 7:30 pm, treat the kids to a night of fun and theatre at KIDS’ NIGHT ON BROADWAY. Fun and pre-show festivities begin at 6pm. Save 50% on tickets when you buy now in person at the Robinson Center Box Office, by phone at 501.244.8800 or online at Ticketmaster.com. Special offer limited to the first 500 tickets sold.

Presented by Celebrity Attractions, the production takes center stage at Robinson Center Music Hall for a limited three-week engagement.