Houston – Theatrical talent from across the country will converge on Houston to bring the 5th Avenue Theatre Company and the Shakespeare Theatre Company co-production of THE SECRET GARDEN presented by Theatre Under The Stars.
Starring in the roles of Mary Lennox and Archibald Craven are Bea Corley and Jeremy Kushnier. Corley is a talented young actress who made her 5th Avenue Theatre debut in the role. Corley has appeared in regional theatre productions including CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG, SHREK and LES MISERABLES. Kushnier has appeared on Broadway in Cirque du Soleil’s PARAMOUR, FOOTLOOSE, RENT, and the 2012 revival of JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR. Josh Young, whose credits include EVITA, LES MISERABLES, and his 2012 Tony AwardⓇ nominated performance in JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, will appear as Dr. Neville Craven. Lizzie Klemperer will play Lily. Klemperer recently appeared on Broadway in BRIGHT STAR, and has appeared Off-Broadway in THE MOST HAPPY FELLA and A CHRISTMAS STORY, as well as in numerous regional theatre productions.
Charlie Franklin, who has appeared on Broadway in THE BOOK OF MORMON and the Original Broadway Cast of THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, will play Dickon. Sean G. Griffin will play the part of Ben Weatherstaff. Griffin’s vast body of work includes six Broadway productions and numerous regional productions including CAROUSEL, ELF, WEST SIDE STORY, and MY FAIR LADY all at 5th Avenue.
Jason Forbach, who was recently on Broadway in LES MISERABLES, and who has appeared in Off-Broadway productions of THE MUSIC TEACHER and AS YOU LIKE IT, as well as in the national tours of LES MISERABLES 25TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR and THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, will play Captain Albert Lennox. Johann George will play Fakir. George’s regional theatre credits include productions of SOUTH PACIFIC and SWEENEY TODD. Julian Lammey will play Colin. Lammey most recently appeared in TUTS’ production of PIPPIN at Miller Outdoor Theatre. His other credits with TUTS include INTO THE WOODS, SCROOGE, and JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH.
Charlotte Maltby will play Martha. Maltby most recently appeared in the 1st National Tour of THE SOUND OF MUSIC directed by Jack O’Brien. Her other credits include regional productions of HAIRSPRAY and LES MISERABLES. Anisha Nagarajan will play Ayah. Nagarajan was in the original cast of Andrew Lloyd Webber and AR Rahman’s BOMBAY DREAMS; and was also part of the Actor’s Fund benefit concert of HAIR, and the Lincoln Center’s concert production of THE SECRET GARDEN.
Additional casting for the production is as follows: Alex Alferov(Soldier/Footman/Ensemble), Brittany Baratz (Rose/Ensemble), Jared Michael Brown(Lt. Wright/Ensemble), Candice Donehoo (Cook/Ensemble), Mary Jo DuGaw(Claire/Mrs. Winthrop), Catherine Flye (Mrs. Medlock), Aaron Shanks (Major Holmes/Ensemble), Hayley Travers (Housemaid/Ensemble), Ethan Watermeier (Major Shelley/Butler/Ensemble), and Rachel Zackoff (Alice). TUTS’ Humphreys School of Musical Theatre student, Caroline Basu, will be the understudy for the part of Mary Lennox.
THE SECRET GARDEN, which runs October 10-22 in Sarofim Hall at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts kicking off TUTS 2017-18 Season, will be directed and choreographed by David Armstrong. Armstrong has served the Executive Producer and Artistic Director of the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle since 2000. He has directed many productions at 5th Avenue including SWEENEY TODD, HELLO DOLLY!, COMPANY, and ANYTHING GOES. Rick Fox is serving as the Music Director/Supervision/New Arrangements for the production. He has worked as a Musical Director, Conductor, and Supervisor on more than 100 productions including CANDIDE, SWEENEY TODD, and HELLO, DOLLY!. Craig Baldwin is the Assistant Director and Trina Mills is the Assistant Choreographer on the production. Baldwin has worked on productions at regional theaters across the country including Lincoln Center Theatre, Roundabout Theatre Company, and 5th Avenue; and is currently the Artistic Associate at Shakespeare Theatre Company in DC. Mills has worked on numerous productions including THE SOUND OF MUSIC, ASSASSINS, and SWEENEY TODD.
The production will feature scenic design by Anna Louizos, costume design by Ann Hould-Ward, lighting design by Mike Baldassari, and sound design by Justin Stasiw. Louizos has designed sets for many Broadway productions including IN THE HEIGHTS, HIGH FIDELITY, and THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD all of which garnered her TonyⓇ nominations. Hould-Ward is a renowned costume designer having created costumes for Broadway productions including THE COLOR PURPLE, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, for which she received a Tony AwardⓇ, and INTO THE WOODS. She recently revisited her work on the latter when she reimagined several pieces for TUTS’ 2016 production of INTO THE WOODS. Baldassari is a TonyⓇ-and-Emmy-nominated lighting designer whose work has been seen on film, television, and on Broadway. His body of work includes the movie musicals, NINE and ROCK OF AGES, and his work on Broadway includes the revival of CABARET. Stasiw has served as the Associate Sound Designer on numerous Broadway productions including ANASTASIA, MOTOWN THE MUSICAL, and SOMETHING ROTTEN!
Casting for the production was done by Laura Stanczyk Casting.
This production of THE SECRET GARDEN is made possible thanks to the generous support of production sponsor, Ballard Exploration Company, Inc.
Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital is the official healthcare partner, United Airlines is the official airline partner and KTRK ABC-13 is the official media partner of Theatre Under The Stars. TUTS is supported in part by the City of Houston through the Theater District and the Texas Commission on the Arts.
THEATRE UNDER THE STARS (“TUTS”) – (Dan Knechtges, Artistic Director; Hillary J Hart, Executive Director) – was founded by Frank M. Young in 1968 and is Houston’s leading musical theatre company for performance, arts education and professional theatrical training; ranging from the classics to new work development. As a 501c3 performing arts organization, TUTS is dedicated to breaking down barriers to access by focusing on inclusivity, education, and community engagement through a commitment to artistic excellence, programs in the community, technique-based curriculum at the Humphreys School of Musical Theatre, and explorative, creative life-skills at The River Performing and Visual Arts Center. For more information, visit www.tuts.com.