Thursday, May 5, 2011

You ain't heard nothin' yet!

Our lobby was filled with beautiful music this morning as the 5th Avenue orchestra—led by maestro Joel Fram—played through Bruce Monroe’s Guys and Dolls orchestrations. Stunning! Stay tuned next week for a behind the scenes video with Bruce as we chat more about our fabulous new production!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Fridays at the 5th!

Once or twice a show, around 100 high school kids join us for our Fridays at The 5th workshop! After a great pizza party in our lobby, they get to attend a workshop with cast and crew members! The most recent Fridays at The 5th workshop was last Friday and featured performers from the current run of 9 to 5: The Musical! For more information on our Education and Outreach programs, visit

Friday, March 4, 2011

Alice Ripley at Barnes and Noble

On March 3rd, we ventured down to the Pacific Place Barnes and Noble with Tony Award winner Alice Ripley to meet and greet her fans, and sign copies of her new cd Daily Practice, as well as the Next to Normal cast recording. We were greeted by nearly 40 fans, some of whom had been waiting for hours!!! Thanks to everybody who came out, and especially to Alice Ripley and Barnes and Noble, for making the event such a success.

As an added bonus, any purchase made at Barnes and Noble, or when using the code: 10441491 through the end of the Next to Normal run (March 13th) will have a percentage of the proceeds go to The 5th Avenue Theatre!

Check out some pictures from the event below:

Alice even signed the event poster!

Some fans had been waiting for almost 2 hours!

These two Cornish College of the Arts students had a great time chatting with Alice!
They are excited to see Next to Normal at the matinee on March 10th !

Decked out in Next to Normal gear!

Alice signed the Next to Normal cast album, as well as her own new cd, Daily Practice!

She even signed some extra copies of Daily Practice for people who couldn't make it to the signing. People from all over the country had been calling, hoping to order a copy!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Meet the Cast of Vanities: A New Musical-Cayman Ilika as Kathy

A Seattle Times Footlight Award winner (for Village Theatre’s Show Boat), Cayman Ilika’s “startlingly beautiful voice (Seattle Weekly) and “winning stage presence” (The News Tribune) are just the right combination for the mysterious character; Kathy. David Armstrong, the director of Vanities: A New Musical, remembers Cayman from an even earlier performance--as a high school senior in the 2003 5th Avenue Theatre High School Awards. “We were so taken with her voice that we’ve followed her ever since,” he says. “She’s not only strikingly beautiful but has an astonishing voice as well.”

Cayman's past credits include Candide and Buddy at the 5th Avenue Theatre, Showboat and The Gypsy King at The Village Theatre and Always...Patsy Cline at ACT: A Contemporary Theatre. Of Vanites: A New Musical, she says:
“Vanities is the story of a journey taken by three women in a time of dramatic social change in the United States. Im also going on a journey where I hope to come to understand and embody the character Kathy and her complex relationships with her two high school friends. The fact that we are aging almost 30 years right before the audience’s eyes is what really excites me! No one is exactly the same person at 40 that they were at 18…parts of us flourish, some parts die away. It’s an exciting challenge to bring those intricacies to life on the stage.

Cayman Ilika as Kathy in Vanities: A New Musical, playing now-May 1st at ACT.
Photo: Chris Bennion

For tickets and more information, visit

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Memphis to be filmed live for Nationwide release!

The 2010 Tony Award® winning Best Musical MEMPHIS will be captured live-in-performance by Broadway Worldwide for high definition exhibition in digital cinemas nationwide this spring. For the first time ever, audiences around the country will be able to experience Broadway's current Tony Award® winning Best Musical in their own home town movie theatre during its Tony Award®-winning year. The Broadway production of MEMPHIS will be captured live during regularly scheduled performances January 18-21st at the Shubert Theatre, utilizing multiple high definition cameras and 96 tracks of sound recording.

The timing of the high definition recording and exhibition of MEMPHIS is historic, providing a unique opportunity to brand and market the show to national audiences in support of both the current Broadway engagement and the forthcoming touring production. Emmy Award®-winning director Don Roy King (Saturday Night Live, CBS' The Early Show, Survivor) and Grammy® and Emmy Award®-winning sound producer Matt Kaplowitz (Ghandi, PBS' To Bear Witness) lead the production team for Broadway Worldwide.

Details about the national theatrical exhibition schedule for MEMPHIS will be announced in the spring.

Read more:

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


The world of Ralphie Parker in A Christmas Story, The Musical! is very different from life today.

Televisions were very rare. Instead, radios and newspapers provided an information lifeline for Americans. Whole families gathered around the radio to listen to news broadcasts and popular programs like “Little Orphan Annie,” quiz shows, mysteries, dramas, music and sports.

Before Harry Potter, Ralphie and his friends might have read books like Daniel Boone and Make Way for Ducklings. But one of the most popular forms of entertainment was found at the local movie house where films like National Velvet, Lassie Come Home, Flash Gordon, Roy Rodgers and Superman costs about 25 cents and included a cartoon. A candy bar costs five cents.

Because personal computers were decades away from being conceived, there were no cell phones or email, Xbox or Wii. One of the earliest computers, the ENIAC was completed in 1945; it weighed 30 tons and was two stories high. A small portion of the computer is pictured to the left. Many of the toys, activities and historic events mentioned in A Christmas Story, The Musical! are unheard of today.

Here is a brief glossary to help you better understand Ralphie’s world.

Red Ryder BB Guns were the preference of Red Ryder, a fictional comic book cowboy in the 1940s, but the Red Ryder air gun, with its lever-action, spring piston, smooth-bore barrel, adjustable iron sights, and a gravity feed magazine with a 650 BB capacity was a real product and highly desired by many American boys. The Red Ryder Range Model Carbine Action BB Gun in the movie A Christmas Story was a fictional model from Jean Shepherd’s’ imagination; it included components like a compass and timepiece which were never a part of a Red Ryder prototype. The “Buck Jones” Daisy air rifle did have a compass and sundial in the stock and could have served as an inspiration.

To see Ralphie, played by Clarke Hallum, sing a song about how much he wants a Red Ryder BB Gun, watch the video clip below.

The Little Orphan Annie Show was one of the first 15-minute daily radio serials made for children. The show was sponsored by Ovaltine and ran from 1930 to the early 1940s. It was inspired by the daily American Comic strip by Harold Gray about a young orphan girl, her dog, Sandy, and her guardian Daddy Warbucks. They encounter many adventurous predicaments sometimes including gangsters, spies and kidnappers. The show was also known for its opening theme song sung by Pierre Andre.

Ovaltine is a brand of milk flavoring created in 1904 in Switzerland and is still available today. The powdery mix, made of sugar, malt extract, cocoa and whey, is often mixed with warm or hot milk. As a sponsor for “The Little Orphan Annie Show”, Ovaltine offered secret decoder rings in exchange for proofs of purchase.

Decoder rings similar to this one were all the rage during the golden age of radio, lending an air of participation to popular radio shows like “Little Orphan Annie”.

Shirley Temple Dolls were manufactured by Ideal Toy and Novelty Company and were fashioned after Shirley Temple, the child star known for her films like Bright Eyes, Heidi and The Little Princess.

Lionel Trains were electric toy trains and model railroads that were embellished with hand-painted details and authentic elements. Elaborate train displays were often featured as part of department store Christmas displays and a Lionel train set was routinely found under the tree on Christmas morning. This photo is of an all-metal Lionel steam engine from around 1938-1942.

The Dionne Quintuplets, born in Canada in 1934, were the first female identical quintuplets to survive infancy. While multiple births are today subjects of television shows like “Jon and Kate Plus 8”, 75 years ago, they were a medical rarity. From their birth, public interest in the Dionne quints was insatiable. The babies became a popular phenomenon and were put on display to the public. Dolls and other souvenirs were created and sold with their likenesses.

Open Road for Boys was a popular boy’s outdoor adventure fiction magazine from 1919 to 1950 that featured advertisements for model airplanes and Red Ryder products.

Jujubes were a candy drop created in 1920 and are still available today. Originally it was a hard candy that you had to suck on and the original flavors were lilac, violet, rose, spearmint and lemon.

-Used with the permission of Kansas City Repertory Theatre