Several cast members from Curtain Call's production of the Disney musical, NEWSIES, playing in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford, February 2 through March 4. are seen here in an early rehearsal for the show. (contributed photo)
They delivered the papers, until they made the headlines...that’s the story of Disney’s hit musical, Newsies, playing in Curtain Call’s Kweskin Theatre, Stamford. And now the production itself is making news: a week before opening and the originally scheduled four-week run has virtually sold out so the nonprofit theatre company has added five more performances through March 4.
Based on a 1992 film of the same name, the story was inspired by the 1899 Newsboys Strike in New York City. It pits Jack Kelly and his fellow newsboys against Joseph Pulitzer, publisher of the New York World, as he tries to make a profit at the expense of the boys who sell his newspaper. The musical, which premiered in 2011, features music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman and a book by Harvey Fierstein.
Some of the dancers in NEWSIES, playing in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford, February 2 through March 4, are seen in this high-flying, high-energy musical comedy gem! (contributed photo)
“We were overjoyed that Curtain Call was selected as one of the first community theatres in the country to be licensed to present this terrific musical,” said Curtain Call executive director Lou Ursone. “Most people love a good David and Goliath-type story, and Newsies is all that plus, it’s loaded with a terrific score,” Ursone added. The audience and the characters alike will rejoice at the end of the show as the Newsies triumph over the evil businessmen. “And yes, there’s some great dancing in this show. All in all, it’s a perfect, ‘feel-good’ musical the entire family can enjoy together,” said Ursone. It’s a rousing tale about fighting for what’s right…and staying true to who you are.
Among the many fictional elements of the show is the character of Katherine Plumber, a young reporter who serves as a love interest for Jack. As a woman reporter during a time when the industry was dominated by men, Plumber is also standing up for herself and fighting for a cause. A great role model for young women, even today.
Newsie Jack Kelly, played by Chris Balestriere, tries to woo a reporter, Katherine Plumber, played by Jennifer Beveridge, in Curtain Call's production of the Disney musical, NEWSIES, playing in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford, February 2 through March 4. (contributed photo)
The creative team behind this production, in addition to Ursone, includes long-time Curtain Call artists: Gail Yudain – director; Eric K. Johnston – music director; Karen Casagrande – choreographer; Peter Barbieri, Jr. – set design; Adam Lobelson – lighting design; and Megan Latte Ormond – costume design. The stage management team is led by Stacy Lupo. Ursone called the production his A-Team and is thrilled with how rehearsals are progressing.
Curtain Call’s cast of 49 includes, from STAMFORD: Tommy DeSalvo, Jainee Didonato, Stephen Emerick, Frankie Isola, Mike Kraus, Tessa Kurtz, Joshua Leferman, Justin McArthur, Matt McArthur, Michael McArthur, Sean Pultz, Maya Sank; Emily Vrissis; from NORWALK: Ann Alford, Rob Ayala, Chris Balestriere, Mike DeSalvo, Nicole DiBlasio, Scott Ferrara, James Hobayan, Kelly Kinas, Gavin McGee, Nikki Monahan, Emily Rybnick, Daniella Sawyer; from WESTPORT: Seth Barkan, Lillie Bukzin, Matt Bukzin; from WILTON: Stephen DiRocco, Kevin Sell; from GREENWICH: Will Armstrong, Kevin Gillespie, Skye Gillespie, Savannah Miller; from BRIDGEPORT: Monica Harrington, Everton Ricketts; from TRUMBULL: Nicholas Ferreira, Danny Randazzo; from FAIRFIELD: Madeleine Tommins; from MILFORD: Trisha Carr McCoy; from STRATFORD: Dante DiFederico; from WATERTOWN: Jennifer Beveridge; from KATONAH, NY: Vic Sauerhof; from RYE, NY: Bob Praid.
“I always enjoy watching our shows in rehearsal, but the energy coming from this cast as they have been working on the staging and choreography has made me want to watch every moment that I can,” said Ursone.
Newsies will play in The Kweskin Theatre from February 2 through March 4, Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, 7:30 p.m. Sunday matinees at 2:00 p.m. Regular prices are $35 for adults, $25 for senior citizens and $17.50 for children (up to age 21). Thursday evenings – all seats $25. Doors open for seating one half hour before show time. Discounted Flex Passes reduce prices by up to 30%. Box Office: 203-461-6358 or online at www.curtaincallinc.com. (As of press time, matinees are already sold out – check with the theatre about possible extra performances.)
The remainder of Curtain Call's 27th season includes Mulberry Street, The Boys Next Door, A Comedy of Tenors and Superman the Musical. In addition to comedy nights, concerts and interactive murder mysteries, there will also be a special, one-night-only presentation of Love Letters featuring veteran soap opera stars, Robert Newman and Britt Newman.
More information is available at www.curtaincallinc.com or by calling 203-329-8207. Curtain Call is the non-profit community-based theatre company in residence at The Sterling Farms Theatre Complex, 1349 Newfield Avenue in Stamford. Year-round productions and workshops are presented by and for area residents in The Kweskin Theatre and The Dressing Room Theatre.
Curtain Call was voted Fairfield County's BEST LOCAL THEATRE GROUP ten years running in the Annual Readers' Poll of The Fairfield County Weekly and has received similar BEST OF awards from Stamford Magazine and StamfordPlus magazine for 2008 through 2016. Curtain Call received The Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 2011 and the ACE Award for Excellence in Arts & Culture from the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County.