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2015 SUMMER SEASON

 

JUNE 19-21/FRIDAY AND SATURDAY AT 8 PM, SUNDAY MATINEE AT 2 PM
Secret Garden

The Rose Center Theater in Westminster CA presents their acclaimed production of The Secret Garden, a musical based on the 1911 novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, book and lyrics by Marsha Norman, with music by Lucy Simon. It premiered on Broadway in 1991 and ran for 709 performances.
Every year for the past five, the Rose’s artistic director, Tim Nelson, brings a troupe of actors east to take in some Broadway shows and remount one of their successful classic musicals from the previous season at their Orange County theater home. Nelson, who owns a summer home in Salem, teaches voice and theater at the Huntington Beach School of Performing Arts and has been named Teacher of the Year by the National Arts School Network; his students likewise consistently win and place in national award competitions.
In a departure from previous years, Nelson has cast The Secret Garden with twenty-five of his students, currently in high school and college. Featured in this cast is Kelsey Kato the Southern California Artist of the Year in Theater, and Vocal Music finalists Lily Buonocore and Garrett Brown.
Set in the early years of the 20th century, The Secret Garden follows Mary Lennox, an eleven year old British girl orphaned in India by a cholera outbreak, who is sent to Yorkshire, England, to live with relatives whom she has never met.                 

 

JUNE 28/SUNDAY MATINEE AT 2 PM

Jamboree

Two of the region’s top country music bands join forces in an exciting afternoon of the sounds of classic country.  The Spurs USA, a tight-knit group of veteran musicians, are the Berkshire’s favorite country band, having entertained at the Saratoga Race Track and Saratoga County Fair.
For their third visit to the Fort, they’ve joined forces with The Bluebillies, a close harmony singing and songwriting band from the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. They set out in 1985 to help revive and preserve the tradition of close harmony country music, with a style of bluegrass and American folk music that has generated a repertoire of original songs.
In their Fort Salem show, these two solo bands will be jamming together in public for the very first time.

 
JULY 10-12/FRIDAY AND SATURDAY AT 8 PM, SUNDAY MATINEE AT 2 PM
aja

Returning to the Fort after two sold-out shows in our cabaret last fall, Aja Nisenson performs in the world premiere of her new one-woman show, Five Years Later. Nisenson spent some early adult years in Italy, so there may be heavy autobiographical content in her fantasy show of a  burgeoning jazz singer who revisits Bologna, Italy, where her career began. Her publicity describes the show: “One American Girl. One Mammoni (mama’s boy). And a sexy jazz club. It’s one spicy meatball.”
An artist who defies accurate description, Aja is a trained singer who weaves unique jazz song interpretations into cutting-edge comic portrayals of outrageously caricatured characters who are instantly recognizable as suppressed elements of all of us.
NYTheatre.com says: “ …what Nisenson does so brilliantly is pull the rug out from under us—one minute making us roar with laughter, in the next breath performing a song that will break your heart.”
An internationally recognized actor/comedian/singer/playwright raised in Morris Plains, New Jersey, and East Dorset, Vermont, Aja Nisenson earned a B.A. in Theater Arts with a Capstone in Playwriting at Brown University and has toured internationally as an actress and jazz singer.

 
JULY 17-19/FRIDAY AT 8 PM, SATURDAY AND SUNDAY AT 2 PM
lrrh

A delightfully original take on the classic fairy tale, this Little Red Riding Hood debuted in California in 1976, fully a decade before Stephen Sondheim’s Broadway stab at the legend in Into the Woods. Recreated by the Fort’s Artistic Director Jay Kerr, this title character, whose name is Rhoda, notes that a little red riding hood is “a piece of clothing, not somebody’s name!” Her name is Rhoda.
A piece for all ages, Little Red Riding Hood is more Betty Freidan than Betty Boop, exploring the seemingly ageless issues of equal pay for equal work, personhood, and the deteriorating environment. Although it sounds more like the platform for the 2016 Presidential Election than fairytale, the traditional characters, including a wolf who has been raised to be vegetarian and a grandmother mired in the past, are joined by two plucky flowers and Mother Nature herself.

 
JULY 25 & 26, AUGUST 1 & 2/SATS & SUNS AT 2 PM, SAT 8/1 ALSO AT 8 PM
TSA

The Fort’s popular touring group, The Singing Anchors, comes home for the debut performance of a brand new musical adventure, a salute to the guru of twentieth century popular music, Burt Bacharach. From “Do You Know the Way to San José” to the score of the Broadway musical Promises, Promises, through “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” and more recent collaborations with Elvis Costello and Spring Awakening’s Steven Sater, the anchors’ enthusiastically explore Bachrach’s unique blend of irregular rhythms with soaring melodies.
An opportunity to see your favorite newscasters in an up-close-and-personal setting, Jessica Layton and Benita Zahn, from Newschannel 13, are joined by CBS6 anchor emeritus, Jerry Gretzinger. Formed in our cabaret in 2009, this musical trio has headlined at Saratoga’s First Night, shared their holiday show at Vapor at the Saratoga Racino, entertained at benefits for Capital Region charities, including the Schenectady ARC and My Brothers’ Keepers, and filled a variety of venues, including the Clifton Park-Halfmoon and Guilderland libraries and Chatham’s MacHaydn Theatre.

 
AUGUST 7-16/FRIDAY 8.7 AND SATURDAYS AT 8 PM; SUNDAYS AT 2 PM
DRAC

Since first appearing in book for in 1897, Bram Stoker’s gothic vampire novel, Dracula,  has fascinated audiences, playwrights, and movie makers alike. Shortly before publication, Stoker himself produced a one-time-and-one-time-only dramatic production of his story at London’s Lyceum Theatre, which he managed. Dracula’s Grandmother takes off from that historical point.
Stoker’s boss, Shakespearean actor Henry Irving, the first actor ever to be knighted, asks to play the title role and then starts demanding re-writes. “Dracula must not die at the end!”  Mrs. Stoker, who hasn’t acted for years, insists on playing the female lead, to keep the young girls away from her husband. The virile young actors lament that there are no show girls to ply with their charms. The most celebrated actress of the era, Ellen Terry, not yet cast because the roles are for young women, begs Stoker to create a role for Dracula’s grandmother.
The real dramatic debut of Dracula was a disaster. With mirth and melody, Jay Kerr presents this year’s World Premiere Musical as the fabulous explanation as to how such a sure-fire hit was dead on arrival.

 
THE SINGING ANCHORS & DRACULA'S GRANDMOTHER SPONSORED IN PART BY
WAMC

FTT
FARM TO TABLE DINNER THEATER, JUNE 20, JULY 11 and AUGUST 8

FARM-TO-TABLE LUNCHEON, JULY 18
 
 
 
 
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