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News : Entertainment Jun 5, 2014 - 2:49:53 AM

Curtain Call opens its final show of the season

By Curtain Call

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A little mother and daughter time between Madame Rose (Marilyn Olsen) and Baby June (Clara Blackwell) in Gypsy, playing June 6 through 28 in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford (contributed photo)
Wrapping up its 23rd season, Curtain Call presents one of the most-produced American musicals: Gypsy. Performances in The Kweskin Theatre will run weekends, beginning June 6 through Saturday, June 28. (At press time, more than 80% of the performances are sold out.)

Gypsy is the ultimate story about an aggressive stage mother, Madame Rose. Join Rose and her daughters June and Louise in their trip across the United States during the 1920s and 1930s, when vaudeville was dying and burlesque was born. The onset of the Depression and the rise of the talkies bring many irrevocable changes into their lives.

The award-winning score of Jule Styne's music and Stephen Sondheim's lyrics include Let Me Entertain You, Some People, You'll Never Get Away from Me, If Momma Was Married, All I Need Is the Girl, Everything's Coming Up Roses, You Gotta Get A Gimmick and Together Wherever We Go. This is a gripping American musical masterpiece that shows some of the darker sides of show business but makes us laugh along the way.

Gypsy tells of how Louise Hovick became the world-famous stripper Gypsy Rose Lee, a transformation brought about under the watchful eye of her indomitable mother.Having failed to turn daughter June into a star, Rose turned her attentions to her less talented but more accommodating daughter Louise.

Gypsy tells the backstage story of the life of the world-famous stripper, Gypsy Rose Lee. Seen here as three "seasoned" strippers trying to explain their personal styles to Gypsy are Electra (Caitlin Roberts, Mazeppa (Heidi Giarlo) and Tessie Turra (Sarah Giggar). (contributed photo)
“I was fortunate to meet June Havoc (the real June) many times over her very long life,” Ursone said. “To hear her speak of her sister, Gypsy Rose Lee, and her mother was a real treat,” he added. In a 1998 New York Times interview, Havoc said, "Mother was very prim, and she was tiny and lovely with big blue eyes…She was endearing and alluring beyond belief. If she had drive and ambition, what's wrong with that?" “A long-time Connecticut resident, Havoc lived the last several years of her life in Stamford,” Ursone noted. Would she have come to see this production? No. While she loved her sister, she disliked the musical and its portrayal of her life, but she did nothing to block its production.

Under the direction of Mamaroneck, NY resident, Tom Coppola, (who also choreographed this production) a cast of 33 area performers will bring this Broadway classic to life.
Starring as the titular character is STAMFORD resident Rachel Schulte – a veteran of many Curtain Call productions. Playing her indefatigable mother, Rose, is WOODBRIDGE resident Marilyn Olsen, who was recently seen at Curtain Call as Madame Thernadier in Les Miserables.

Joining Olsen and Schulte on stage are, from STAMFORD: Eli Brennan, Thomas A. Burke, Lily Fine, Jerry Kranz, Michael Kraus, Tessa Kurtz, and Ethan Riordan; from NORWALK: Claire Kenny and Caitlin Roberts; from FAIRFIELD: Jim Hisey, Chloe Kronzer, Kalle Meehan and Natalie Steele; from WILTON: Allison Farago, Matthew Farago, Julia Foodman and Kevin Sell; from WESTPORT: Alice Hickson, Julia Mandelbaum and Christian Melhuish; from STRATFORD: Sarah Giggar, Tom Torpey and Nora Watson; from SOUTHPORT: Steve Benko; from GREENWICH: Addison Albano and Katie Suss; from NEW CANAAN: Tom Butterworth; from REDDING: Clara Blackwell, from BRIDGEPORT: Leslie Jones; from PELHAM MANOR, NY: Susan Rauh; and from PORT CHESTER, NY: Heidi Giarlo.

Seen here in a rehearsal for Gypsy, playing June 6 through 28 in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford, is Redding actress Clara Blackwell. Her previous appearances with Curtain Call include, The Sound of Music, Joseph...Dreamcoat, Oklahoma and Fiddler on the Roof. (contributed photo)
The production team also includes music direction by Greg Chrzczon, costumes by Megan Latte Ormond and hair/wig designs by Cindy Schulte (all of STAMFORD), set design by Peter Barbieri, Jr. (FAIRFIELD), lighting design by Adam Lobelson (RIDGEFIELD), and stage management by (from NORWALK) Jeffrey Bianco and Jordon Michael Hensley and, from STRATFORD, Dan Travers.

Tickets are available from the Box Office at 203-461-6358 or online at– Adults: $29. / Senior Citizens: $22. / Students and children: $14.50.
Curtain Call is the nonprofit, professionally-run, community-based theatre company in residence at The Sterling Farms Theatre Complex, 1349 Newfield Avenue in Stamford.
Year-round productions and educational workshops are presented by and for area residents in The Kweskin Theatre and The Dressing Room Theatre.

Curtain Call has been voted Fairfield County’s BEST LOCAL THEATRE GROUP 2005 through 2014 in the Annual Readers’ Poll of The Fairfield County Weekly as well as BEST LOCAL THEATRE by StamfordPlus magazine for the past six years and as BEST VENUE by Stamford Magazine readers.. Curtain Call also received The Governor’s Award for Excellence in Culture and Tourism for 2011 and in a 2012 statewide Facebook poll, Curtain Call was noted as the most popular theatre site in Connecticut.

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