OGDEN, Utah – Utah Musical Theatre opens the 2003 season with the beloved American musical, The Fantasticks.
One of the longest-running musicals of all time, The Fantasticks celebrates the wonder, heartache and elation of adolescent romance and youthful ideals. It also marks the first production for UMT under the leadership of Bruce Cohen, who joined the company as its new artistic and managing director.
“The Fantasticks is quite simply the modern classic musical,” said Cohen. “Anyone who considers themselves well-versed in the genre, will know this show.”
The cast features Weber State University alumnus and professional performer, Tim Goins, a veteran of past UMT productions Dames at Sea and Will Rogers Follies. Goins plays the role of Hucklebee. Actor Chris Vaglio, who plays Bellomy, may also be a familiar face for UMT fans. Vaglio appeared in UMT’s 2001 production of Man of La Mancha. The cast also includes Paul Cheney (El Gallo), Jessica Pearce (Luisa), Natalie Vickers (The Mute) and Jeremy Flygare (Henry) from WSU’s performing arts department. Joining these WSU and UMT veterans is Ryan Shaver (Matt) from the University of Utah, and Andrew Brandley (Mortimer) who is a junior at Roy High School.
In addition to all the Utah talent onstage, The Fantasticks features the work of many local theater artists behind the scenes as well. Jed Barnes and Cliff Wallgren, both WSU students, will be designing costumes and lights. And Robert Vaughan, an Ogden denizen, is responsible for the scenic design.
“There is such a rich field of talent and craft in the area, it made casting and hiring a real luxury for us at UMT,” said Cohen. “In fact, our entire summer company is roughly 50 percent Utahn. This is a demonstrative difference over previous seasons and, in my view, a real justification for calling ourselves the ‘Utah’ musical theater. We are truly promoting and providing a venue for the community and the state and I will make certain we continue this trend for seasons to come.”
Linda Kerns is directing a UMT production for the second year in a row. Based in Los Angeles, Kerns directed last season’s I Do I Do. In addition to her theater work, Kerns teaches at UCLA.
The Fantasticks opens June 13 at 7:30 p.m., with additional evening performances June 14, 18-21, 25-28. A matinee performance is scheduled for 2 p.m., June 14. The Fantasticks will be performed at the George and Dolores Eccles Theater in the Val. A. Browning Center at WSU.
For tickets call 1-800-WSU TIKS or (801) 626-8500.
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