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Northwestern University Summer 2012 Theatre/Dance Calendar

Johnny Mercer Showcase and Celebration Concert to kick-off line-up of events

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June 14, 2012 | by Judy Moore

EVANSTON, Ill. --- No need to travel to New York to enjoy Broadway-quality talent. SummerStage 2012 -- presented by the Theatre and Interpretation Center (TIC) at Northwestern University -- offers a variety of stage- and dance-related programs in late June and throughout July for all ages. 

The Johnny Mercer Foundation Songwriters Project and the American Music Theatre Project  (AMTP) at Northwestern University will hold a weeklong songwriting intensive for emerging songwriters and writing teams, aged 18 to 30, from June 18 to 23. Now in its seventh year, the project will host the nation’s most promising writers of pop, folk, jazz, country and music theatre. Master teachers Craig Carnelia, Andrew Lippa and Lari White will lead the six-day program of master classes and workshops that culminate June 22 in “The Johnny Mercer Songwriters Showcase” and a June 23 star-studded “The Johnny Mercer Celebration Concert” featuring Broadway star Ann Hampton Callaway. Both events are open to the public. 

In partnership with the National Theatre in London, TIC’s National Theatre Live (NT Live) season will include two broadcasts (June 26 and July 24) of “Frankenstein,” a new play by Nick Dear based on the novel by Mary Shelley. The production stars English film, television, radio and theatre actors Benedict Cumberbatch (BBC’s “Sherlock”) and Jonny Lee Miller (“Trainspotting” and “Hackers”). 

On June 28 and 29, Emmy Award-winning dance company Jump Rhythm Jazz Project will present two evening performances of premieres and repertory favorites under the artistic direction of company founder and choreographer and Northwestern dance faculty member Billy Siegenfeld. 

SummerStage 2012 programming is partially sponsored by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. TIC’s National Theatre Live broadcasts are sponsored by a generous grant from The Alumnae of Northwestern University. For more season details, visit www.tic.northwestern.edu

All summer events are open to the public and take place on Northwestern’s Evanston campus, as noted. To purchase single and group tickets to SummerStage 2012 events call the TIC Box Office at (847) 491-7282 or www.tic.northwestern.edu

EVANSTON CAMPUS CONSTRUCTION NOTE: Beginning June 25, Arts Circle Drive will be closed to traffic due to a three-year construction project. Free parking will still be available for audience members. For patrons who require special needs access, designated drop-off points for each theater will be available along Campus Drive. For the most current information, map and directions, visit www.tic.northwestern.edu

SUMMER 2012 THEATRE/DANCE CALENDAR 

The Johnny Mercer Songwriters Showcase at 8 p.m. Friday, June 22, at the Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. Original music will be performed by emerging songwriters from across the country during the annual “The Johnny Mercer Songwriters Showcase.” The one-evening-only concert will celebrate pop, folk, jazz, country and music theatre. The program will be hosted by the three 2012 Master Teachers -- Tony-nominated composer and lyricist Craig Carnelia, Grammy-nominated composer and lyricist Andrew Lippa and Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Lari White. Single tickets are $10 for the general public or $5 for Northwestern students on advance purchase only ($10 at the door). 

The Johnny Mercer Celebration Concert, featuring Broadway star Ann Hampton Callaway, 8 p.m. Saturday, June 23, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. The stars are out for an evening of musical enchantment, sharing songs by the writers who have most inspired them from George Gershwin to Paul McCartney. Featuring one of the leading champions of the Great American Songbook, Ann Hampton Callaway (“SWING!”), who is known as ”the singer who stills the room.” This one-night only concert will also include performances by Tony-nominated composer and lyricist Craig Carnelia, Grammy-nominated composer and lyricist Andrew Lippa and Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Lari White; emerging songwriters from the 2012 Johnny Mercer Foundation Songwriters Project; and an appearance by the great Johnny Mercer himself through audio and video recollections where he will reveal the writers who most inspired his prolific career. Single tickets are $40 per person and $10 for full-time students with IDs. 

National Theatre Live broadcasts, “Frankenstein,” a new play by Nick Dear based on the novel by Mary Shelley, 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 26, and 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 24, Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. Oscar-winning film director Danny Boyle (“127 Hours,” “Slumdog Millionaire”) returned to the stage to direct this visionary production starring Benedict Cumberbatch (BBC’s “Sherlock”) and Jonny Lee Miller (“Trainspotting” and “Hackers”). It will return to cinemas worldwide in June for a limited season of encore screenings. Childlike in his innocence, but grotesque in form, Frankenstein’s bewildered creature is cast out into a hostile universe by his horror-struck maker. Meeting with cruelty wherever he goes, the friendless and increasingly desperate and vengeful creature tracks down his creator and strikes a terrifying deal. Issues of scientific responsibility, parental neglect and the nature of good and evil are embedded in this thrilling and classic Gothic tale. Single tickets are $20 and $10 for full-time students with IDs. 

Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, 8 p.m. Friday, June 29, and 8 p.m. Saturday, June 30, Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. The Emmy Award-winning dance company, Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, will present an evening of dance premieres under the artistic direction of company founder and choreographer Billy Siegenfeld. Featuring the entire Jump Rhythm ensemble and choreography by Siegenfeld, River North Dance Chicago founding member Jeff Hancock and Be The Groove associate director Kevin Dumbaugh, this two-performance-only event also includes audience and critical favorites from the Jump Rhythm repertory. Tickets are $25 for the general public; $22 for seniors 62 and older, Northwestern faculty and staff and area educators; and $10 for full-time students; $5 for Northwestern students on advance purchase only. 

“With a Song In My Heart: The Romance of Richard Rodgers,” 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 13; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 14; 2 p.m. Sunday, July 15; 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 20: 7:30 p.m. July 21; 2 p.m. Sunday, July 22; 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 27; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 28; and 2 p.m. Sunday, July 29, Ethel M Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. A grand salute to Broadway musical great Richard Rodgers, directed by Jeff Award-winner Dominic Missimi and conceived and arranged by David Fiorello, this three-part revue celebrates the collaborations of Rodgers, Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II. Considered by many to be the greatest composer of musicals, Rodgers contributed more Broadway hits to the repertoire than any other writer. Single tickets are $30 for the general public; $27 for seniors 62 and older, Northwestern faculty and staff and area educators; $10 for full-time students; and $5 for Northwestern students on advance purchase only ($10 at the door). 

“Oklahoma!” film screening, 7 p.m. Thursday, July 19, Ethel M. Barber Theatre, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. A one-night-only screening of the Oscar-winning musical that first brought together composer Richard Rodgers and lyricist and librettist Oscar Hammerstein II, the 1955 film stars Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones. Set in Oklahoma territory, true love never runs smooth as two young cowboys vie with an evil ranch hand and a traveling peddler for the hearts of the women they love. The screening is part of TIC’s Rodgers and Hammerstein mini-film series. Single tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for full-time students. 

ImagineU Family Series, “Lyle the Crocodile,” 7 p.m. Friday, July 20; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, July 21; 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, July 22; 7 p.m. Friday, July 27; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, July 28; and 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, July 29, Hal and Martha Hyer Wallis Theater, Theatre and Interpretation Center, 1949 Campus Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. The 2012 SummerStage season will conclude with the musical tale of everyone’s favorite toe-tapping, bathtub-habitating reptile, “Lyle the Crocodile.” Directed by Northwestern MFA directing student John Michael DiResta and presented through TIC’s Imagine U: Family Series, the production is recommended for children aged 5 to 10 and their families. Family Picnic Fridays, Pajama Saturdays, talk-backs with the cast and other events, are also planned, making summer even more enjoyable for kids. Single tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for Northwestern students on advance purchase only ($10 at the door). 

“South Pacific” film screening, 2 p.m. Saturday, July 28, Ethel M. Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. Considered to be one of the greatest Broadway musicals, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s tale of love on a South Pacific island won 10 Tony Awards, as well as the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1950. In the 1958 movie adaptation starring Rossano Brazzi, Mitzi Gaynor and John Kerr, love blooms amid issues of racial prejudice as sailors and nurses put on a musical comedy show while waiting to play their part in World War II. The screening is part of TIC’s Rodgers and Hammerstein mini-film series. Tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for full-time students. 

SUBSCRIPTION PACKAGE PRICING 

Audiences may select from two different packages. The “6-Play Subscription” offers a 20 percent discount over single ticket prices and guarantees a seat to the “Celebration Concert,” Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, “With a Song in My Heart: The Romance of Richard Rodgers” and “Lyle the Crocodile.” Subscribers also may choose from either “Frankenstein” broadcast and choose either the “Oklahoma!” screening or the “South Pacific” screening, and subscribers receive complimentary tickets to the “Songwriters Showcase” with advance reservations. Subscriptions range from $45 to $108. 

The “4-Pack Flex-Pass Package” lets audiences select any event in the SummerStage 2012 season. One flex-pass may be used per show or flex-passes can be combined to bring friends to one or two events. Dates and shows can be selected at the time of ordering or audiences can choose their dates and events throughout the season. Flex-pass packages range from $30 to $90. 

TICKETS 

To order a season subscription, or single or group tickets, contact the TIC Box Office (847) 491-7282 or order online at www.tic.northwestern.edu.

Topics: Campus Life