Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Beauty & the Beast Marks Hartford Children's Theater's 20th

Meagan MacLeod as “Belle” in Hartford Children’s Theatre’s
Beauty and the Beast. Photo by Thomas Giroir
Hartford Children’s Theatre will celebrate its 20th anniversary year with the family musical, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

Under the direction of newly appointed Artistic Director Ryan Ratelle with musical direction and choreography by Lisa Foss, Beauty and the Beast opens on Friday, Oct. 30 at the Carol Autorino Center for Arts and Humanities on the campus of Saint Joseph College (1678 Asylum Avenue in West Hartford) where the show will run through Saturday, Nov. 7.

Adapted from the Academy Award-winning animated film by its original screenwriter Linda Woolverton, the show is the classic love story of Belle, a young woman in a “small, provincial town,” and the Beast, who is really a prince trapped in a spell. If the Beast can learn to love and to be loved, the spell will be broken and he will be transformed back to his former self, but time is running out, and if the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he will be doomed for all eternity. The unforgettable score with music by Alan Menken (Little Shop of Horrors) and lyrics by Howard Ashman (Aladdin) and Tim Rice (Evita) includes the Academy Award-winning title song and the show-stopping "Be Our Guest," plus additional songs written especially for the stage.

The cast of BEAUTY IN THE BEAST includes Meagan MacLeod as Belle, Matthew Berry as the Beast, Greg Ludovici as Gaston, Marcus Janetatos as“Lumiere, Emely Burns Larsen as Mrs. Potts, Andrew LaPlante as Cogsworth, Bruce Terrill as Maurice, Caitlin Sailer as Babette, Katie Harden as Madame de la Grande Bouche, Josiah Rowe as Lefou, Nick D’Angelo as Monsieur D’Arque and Timothy Perry as Chip.

Featured in the ensemble are Lorraine Blatt, Victoria Mooney, Melissa Anne Pilarski, Thomas Beebe, Jean Della Rocca, Michael Dikegoros, Sophia Foss, Scott MacDonald, Amaris Montoya, Anthony Piccione, Katrina Schwartz, Mary Terrill, Katie Woelfel, Arnie Woelfel.

Beauty and the Beastfeatures Scenic Designs by Greg Brock, Costume Designs by Melissa Richards and Hair Design by Linda Stanhope.

The performance schedule is Friday, Oct. 30 at 7 pm; Saturday, Oct. 31 at 2 pm; Sunday, Nov. 1 at 2 pm; Wednesday, Nov. 4 at 7 pm; Friday, Nov. 6 at 7 pm and Saturday, Nov. 7 at 10 am and 2 pm.

Tickets are $18 for Adults, $13 for Children (13 and under) & senior citizens and are available by calling the box office at 860-429-7970 ext. 12. Discounts are available for groups of 15 or more.

For more information visit http://www.hartfordchildrenstheatre.org/.

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

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