AURORA — The Broadway musical "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" opens April 26 for 10 performances at Aurora Community theater. It will run Friday and Saturday through May 18, plus Sundays, May 5 and 12.
The Tony award-winning best musical features music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, with the book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart.
The play tells the story of crafty slave Pseudolus, who schemes to gain his freedom by winning the hand of beautiful, but slightly obtuse courtesan Philia for his master, Hero.
Dave Stebbins directs Don Bernardo (Pseudolus), Jesse Roberts (Hero), Shelby Carlisle (Philia) and Thomas Love (Miles Gloriosus) in the plot full of twists, turns, mistaken identity, slamming doors and a showgirl or two.
Tim Shaffer is music director, with Amie W. Gabel as choreographer and Marc C. Howard as producer. The play also features Will C. Crosby (Hysterium), Brian Diehl (Senex), Karen Spiegler (Domina), Michael Guffey (Marcus Lycus) and Neil Rubin (Erronius)
Geneviève Adelman, Emily Fields, Katie Hintze, Diana Nabring and Alyssa Whiddon portray the courtesans, with proteans being Rollin DeVere III, Jeffrey Koudelka and Douglas R. Vanek.
Ann Nyenhuis is the stage manager / technical director, with April Sike as assistant stage manager, Karen Cirino in charge of costumes, Maggie Hamilton as sound designer and Frankie Castrovillari as lighting creator.
Todd Plone designed the set, and Nyenhuis led the construction crew, which included Joe Mira, Paul Mira, Ashley McCoy, Chris Hrach, Jerry Schaber, Craig McCloud, April Sike, Dave Nyenhuis, Linda Weinkamer and Rubin.
Craig Kollai serves as liaison to the ACT board of trustees, Marianne Gingras created the show image and CPH Communications managed marketing and the box office.
Music director Shaffer will play the trumpet and conduct the orchestra, with Dave Coxe on keyboard, David Betts on trombone, Josh Daum on percussion, Jonathan "Skip" Edwards, on bass and windwinds played by Ron Nelson, David Ciucevich and George Cyphers. Kristen Johnsten accompanied during rehearsals.
"A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International. All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI.
Aurora Community Theatre’s 59th season continues June 28-July 13 with "Bonnie & Clyde."
Tickets for all shows are available online anytime, including seat selection, at auroracommunitytheatre.com or by calling 330-562-1818.
ACT annually presents three main season shows, a summer stock production, benefit show, plus two children’s summer workshops, reaching an annual audience of 7,000-plus.