Some singular sensations

Center for Performing Arts in Rhinebeck hosts A Chorus Line opening this Friday, Dog on Fleas this Saturday

by Ann Hutton
August 11, 2011 12:29 PM | 0 0 comments | 213 213 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The cast of “A Chorus Line” at The Center for Performing Arts in Rhinebeck (Photo by Joanne Contreni)
The cast of “A Chorus Line” at The Center for Performing Arts in Rhinebeck (Photo by Joanne Contreni)
Competition, passion, hope and heartbreak – maybe a big break, if you’re super-lucky: That’s what life in show business is all about. A Chorus Line depicts such a life in “a brilliant fusion of dance, song and a compellingly authentic drama,” and has served to inspire audiences since it opened at the Public Theater’s Newman Theatre on May 21, 1975. One of the longest-running shows on Broadway and winner of nine Tony Awards and a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, it’s the story of the ambitions of professional Broadway gypsies to land a job – a powerful metaphor for all human aspiration. Memorable musical numbers include “What I Did for Love” and “One (Singular Sensation).” And if you’re not humming those tunes right now, it can only mean that you haven’t had the supreme pleasure of witnessing a production of A Chorus Line.

You’re in luck: Up in One Productions is proud to bring A Chorus Line (with music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Edward Kleban and book by James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante) to the Center for Performing Arts in Rhinebeck. The production runs August 12 through August 28, on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and at 3 p.m. on Sundays, offering multiple opportunities to hear the stories of dancers who put it all out there for the chance to shine under the bright lights of Broadway. As each awaits a turn to audition, individual aspirations and secrets, talents and shortcomings are revealed. The show captures the essence of what drives people who dance, act and make music. It is not about egos, but rather the passion that makes them yearn to perform even when rejection is oftentimes more likely than success.

Produced by Diana di Grandi and directed and choreographed by Kevin Archambault, with music direction by Matthew Woolever, the cast of veteran performers includes AnnChris Warren (Cassie), Lou Trapani (Zack), Susan Scott (Val), Stefanie Schappert (Sheila), Michael Werner (Mike), Kerry Gibbons (Judy), Nate Dotson (Richie), Emily Woolever (Maggie), Emily DePew (Laurie), Owen Jones (Paul), Alex Bennet (Mark), Kerry Dotson (Kristine), Harrison Forman (Don), Tatiana Pierce (Diana), Olivia Michaels (Connie), Allie Miron (Bebe), Philip Corso (Greg), Chris Vallone (Al) and Nick Anthony (Bobby). Tickets are $24 for adults, $22 for seniors and children under age 12.

Two more great shows aimed at keeping young people entertained through the dog days of August are scheduled, the first of which is quite apropos: Dog on Fleas, the Center’s favorite kid-friendly band, returns on Saturday, August 13 at 11 a.m. The group revels in diverse sounds and styles of music that get kids moving, grooving and singing along. And on two Saturdays, August 20 and 27 at 11 a.m., the Center’s summer theater workshop program Kids on Stage will perform Seussical, Jr. This fantastical, magical musical centers around Horton the Elephant, who finds himself faced with a double challenge of protecting his tiny friend Jojo (and all the invisible Whos) and guarding an abandoned egg left to his care by the irresponsible Mayzie La Bird. Seussical, Jr. is directed by Lisa Lynds. Tickets are $9 for adults, $7 for children.

If you’ve ever sat in the audience and felt the pull to be on that stage, take note: Auditions for future productions are underway – on August 13 through 15, for The Diary of Anne Frank, and on August 20 through 22 for Dracula.

The Center for Performing Arts is located at 661 Route 308 outside the village of Rhinebeck. Further information and tickets for all performances may be reserved by calling the Center at (845) 876-3080 or by visiting

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