CEDAR CITY — “Peter and the Starcatcher,” winner of five of this year’s Tony awards, will receive its regional premiere in the Utah Shakespeare Festival’s 2013 season.
Additionally, festival directors announced the staging of two musicals, “Anything Goes” and “The Marvelous Wonderettes,” in the season, rather than one, in a return to a previous festival tradition.
The Shakespeare plays to be presented are “King John,” “The Tempest,” “Love’s Labour’s Lost” and “Richard II.” Completing the seven-production season is the American theater classic “Twelve Angry Men.”
“Each play represents our continued commitment to explore master works of the theater while entertaining and engaging our audiences in new and thrilling ways,” artistic director Brian Vaughn said in a news release. “It is a season of limitless possibilities.”
In a second break from tradition, the festival announced its 2013 lineup while its 2012 season continues, with “Les Misérables,” “Hamlet” and “Stones in His Pockets” playing an additional week, through Oct. 27.
The Utah Shakespeare Festival is amid its “complete the canon” campaign, which involves the staging of each of Shakespeare’s 38 plays over the next 12 years and production of the Bard’s 12 history plays in sequential order. “King John” is the second in the series, following this year’s rarely seen “Titus Andronicus.”
“Peter and the Starcatcher,” nominated for a near-record nine Tony awards, garnered enthusiastic response when it opened on Broadway in April 2012 and was the year’s must-see show. Ben Brantley of the New York Times wrote, “With grown-up theatrical savvy and a child’s wonder at what it can achieve, ‘Peter and the Starcatcher’ floats right through the ceiling. ... While there’s not a body harness in sight, this show never stops flying.”
Based on the 2006 novel of the same name, “Peter and the Starcatcher” is the backstory of J.M. Barrie’s beloved Peter Pan character.
“Anything Goes,” a classic musical that debuted in 1934, has music and lyrics by the legendary Cole Porter and introduced the American Songbook classics “You’re the Top,” “I Get a Kick Out of You” and the title song. The show was filmed twice and adapted in a live TV version in 1954, with Ethel Merman, at age 46, reprising her lead role.
A contemporary jukebox musical, “The Marvelous Wonderettes” features pop songs of the ’50s and ’60s, including “Lollipop,” “It’s My Party” and “It’s in His Kiss (the Shoop Shoop Song).”
The drama “Twelve Angry Men” was first a television play in 1954, then adapted for the stage the following year and most famously was made into a motion picture starring Henry Fonda in 1957. A second TV adaptation starred George C. Scott in 1997.
The Utah Shakespeare Festival 2013 season, the company’s 52nd, will run from June 24 to Oct. 19. Tickets are already on sale at the Cedar City ticket office, by calling 800-PLAYTIX or online at bard.org.
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