Arkansas Repertory Theatre (The Rep), the state's largest nonprofit professional theatre, has announced its 37th MainStage Season. The new season will include dramatic contrasts, classic productions and a world premiere production to form a season that exemplifies The Rep's mission of producing diverse work of the highest artistic standards for its Arkansas audience.
"We welcome you to set sail with us through a season of exciting contrasts; plays and musicals that demand to live on a stage and that reflect theatrical storytelling at its most dynamic and creative," says Bob Hupp, Producing Artistic Director at Arkansas Repertory Theatre.
"We'll celebrate the triumph of the human spirit and reveal incredible art in the ordinary, while also exploring the dark side of the American Dream. We'll experience epic tales as one young leader strives for redemption and power while another becomes caught up in a dangerous world not of his making. And we'll laugh and sing along with the warm nostalgia of holidays gone by and a hysterical adult comedy in two completely different but utterly charming musical productions," says Hupp. "Every season is a journey, but this season is truly an adventure."
THE 2012-2013 MAINSTAGE SEASON
"From this day to the ending of the world, but we in it shall be remembered, we few, we happy few, we band of brothers." William Shakespeare's Henry V will open The Rep's season and run tonight, September 7 – September 23, 2012.
Directed by Robert Hupp, Producing Artistic Director at Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Henry V is at once an indictment of war and a testament to valor in the face of overwhelming odds as an adventurous young king must grapple with absolute power.
In this famous story, King Henry IV has died, and his son, young King Henry V assumes the throne. As bitter civil wars have broken the people of England, Henry V must put aside his wild adolescent past, gain the respect of his people and rebuild his country.
In this context, Henry rashly decides to invade France to lay claim to his birthright. As he learns of a conspiracy on his life, he must also fight against incredible odds to win the famous Battle of Agincourt, where the English are vastly outnumbered by the French and defeat is an utmost certainty.
Everything is at stake, including a marriage with the power to unite the two kingdoms, unless young King Henry V can successfully conquer his friends, his enemies and himself in one of Shakespeare's most epic tales.
"Henry V is such a compelling character," says Hupp. "A young king, untested, driven by ambition, who strives for redemption and power through the cauldron of war and redefines his world in the process."
Up next is The Rep's Young Artists' Production, an annual performance by The Rep's SMTI (Summer Musical Theatre Intensive) theatre training program October 24 – November 3, 2012. The most talented young artists in the state always deliver some of the most feel good shows of the season.
Conceived and directed by The Rep's Resident Director and Director of Education, Nicole Capri, this year's show is all about the actor's journey from stardust to stardom and is titled "Singin' on a Star." These young artists will celebrate a rite of passage to the Broadway stage – waiting tables! With song selections from the pop charts and the Great White Way, The Rep's starving young artists sing about big dreams in the big apple this fall.
"The Rep's Young Artists have established themselves as a defining characteristic of this theatre. Their enthusiasm and spirit leaps across the footlights and combines with their amazing talent to create unforgettable experiences each season," says Hupp.
Just in time for Christmas, Rep audiences are invited to see wha happens when a couple of song-and-dance men with romance on their minds follow a duo of beautiful singing sisters on their way to a Christmas show in Vermont in Irving Berlin's nostalgic classic White Christmas.
Sparks fly and snow falls as a dazzling score features some of the most famous songs ever written, including "Blue Skies," "I Love a Piano," "Happy Holidays," "It's Cold Outside" and the unforgettable classic "White Christmas."
Based on the popular Paramount Pictures film, written for the screen by Norman Krasna, Norman Panama and Melvin Frank, with music and lyrics by Irving Berlin and a book by David Ives and Paul Blake, White Christmas runs November 30 – December 30, 2012 and will be directed by Nicole Capri.