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Rock Musical 'Asphalt Beach,' 1928 Romantic Comedy 'Holiday' Among Theatre Highlights

Northwestern’s theatre department will launch the 2006-07 season with the world premiere of “Asphalt Beach” through Nov. 12 at the Josephine Louis Theatre.

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November 6, 2006 | by Judy Moore

Northwestern’s theatre department will launch the 2006-07 season with the world premiere of “Asphalt Beach” through Nov. 12 at the Josephine Louis Theatre.

The American Music Theatre Project’s third new work will be the world premiere of the hilarious rock musical “Asphalt Beach.” It features music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, book by T. C. Smith and Peter Spears and direction by Amanda Dehnert. The musical is set in Asphalt Beach, N.J., home of “Our Lady of Suppressed Desire Academy for Rambunctious Young Girls,” where a rag-tag band of misfit girls struggle daily to break free from the dominating headmistress, Sister Severia.

Nobel Prize-winning playwright Harold Pinter’s clever dark comedy “The Birthday Party” will be performed Nov. 10 to 19 at the Ethel M. Barber Theatre, 30 Arts Circle Drive, and is set in a small seedy boarding house at a coastal resort. The house is home to a man, his mentally wayward wife and their boarder — a strange chap, unkempt and apparently in flight from someone.

The Northwestern Mime Troupe returns to the Josephine Louis Theatre stage from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3 for “The Mime Show.” The student mimes will write and stage the show and demonstrate this expressive silent form of communication during several performances. Theatre Professor Bud Beyer, the troupe’s founder and director, will direct the show.

The mischievous and magical musical “Pippin” is the lively coming-of-age story of 8th century King Charlemagne’s oldest son. Written by the composer of the Broadway and Chicago hit “Wicked,” “Pippin” will be performed Jan. 26 to Feb. 4 at the Louis Theatre.

Mary Zimmerman, renowned Tony Award-winning director, Goodman Theatre Artistic Associate and Lookingglass Theatre ensemble member, returns to the Northwestern stage for the first time since “Six Myths” (which became “Metamorphosis” on Broadway) to direct William Shakespeare’s “Cymbeline” Feb. 9 to 18 at the Barber Theatre. This adventurous Shakespearean fantasy weaves a tale of the beautiful British princess Imogen and her new husband Posthumus, who are parted by circumstances invoked by her wicked stepmother and her distant father, King Cymbeline.

Performances of Danceworks 2007 will be held Feb. 23 to March 4 at the Louis Theatre. The annual showcase features the finest choreography of Northwestern’s dance faculty. Joseph Mills, director of the University’s Dance Program, will direct the 2007 edition.

Aurand Harris’ “The Orphan Train” will be performed April 12 to 15 at the Louis Theatre. This family-friendly presentation will be directed by theatre faculty member Rives Collins. “The Orphan Train” follows the inspirational adventure of eight orphaned children seeking a home. The production will travel to Evanston-area junior high schools following its Evanston campus run.

Caryl Churchill’s comedy “Cloud Nine” will be performed April 20 to 29 at the Barber Theatre. It is a hilarious riff on class, sex and race by the Obie Award-winning British playwright. A provocative and amusing study of colonialism and sexual politics set in Victorian Africa and contemporary England, it boasts one of the most dramatic structures in contemporary theatre. Seven actors double and others triple roles to portray 16 characters in a timeline that jumps more than 100 years from the late 19th century to the present.

Philip Barry’s 1928 romantic comedy “Holiday” will be performed May 11 to 20 at the Louis Theatre. This is the story of a young man who plans to wed a girl of great wealth and social standing and who expresses his preference to live life as a holiday, much to his future father-in-law’s chagrin and the girl’s sister’s fascination.

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For ticket information, call the Theatre and Interpretation Center Box Office at (847) 491-7282. Online ticket sales for also are available at www.tic.northwestern.edu/tickets.html.

Topics: Campus Life