Video Recap: Songs, Streamers, and More at Atlanta Lyric’s ’18-’19 Season Reveal Cabaret

It’s always a good time when you pack a small venue with Atlanta theatre patrons, performers, and friends. Throw in some Broadway songs, and you’ve got a rockin’ night.

Last Saturday, the Atlanta Lyric Theatre presented their ’18-’19 Season Announcement Party, an intimate evening of cabaret performances held at the Lyric Studio Theatre (one of the billion theatres on the Marietta Square). Hosted by Lyric artistic director Mary Nye Bennett, the show featured performances from many Atlanta theatre favorites including Chase Peacock, Jessica De Maria, and more.

Mary welcomed the audience by expressing her love for the community feeling of the Atlanta Lyric Theatre, saying, “What I love about the Lyric is getting to know our subscribers as friends, not just patrons.” She proved this by personally addressing multiple guests she spotted at tables around the room.

Though the nominal purpose of the evening was to reveal the Lyric’s next season of musicals, Mary warned us that she planned to draw out the suspense, a la Ryan Seacrest on American Idol. She called that a dated reference, but I appreciated it.

The first act included performances from what’s left of the Lyric’s current season: Dirty Rotten ScoundrelsAlways… Patsy Cline, and Tarzan, rolling out the season reveal in Act 2 using medleys from each show. And it was definitely worth waiting for! Next season will include: Aida, Newsies, The Wedding Singer, Singin’ in the Rain, and Oliver! 

The biggest surprise of the evening was when Mary welcomed the Aurora Theatre’s Ann-Carol Pence and Anthony Rodriguez on stage to announce that Newsies will be a Lyric/Aurora co-production next summer. Honestly at this point I think we’re all ridiculously on board with any Atlanta theatre collaborations the fam wants to throw at us (see: Memphis 2015, In the Heights 2016, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame 2017).

Check out highlights from the performances below!

“Walkin’ After Midnight” from Always… Patsy Cline. Performed by Mary Nye Bennett (who is not playing the role in the show but is awesome nonetheless).

“Strangers Like Me” from Tarzan. Performed by Chase Peacock and J. Koby Parker (also not necessarily playing these roles in the Lyric’s production, as Mary said they had just finished up auditions).

“Everything I Am” from Tarzan. Performed by Chase Peacock.

“Every Story” from Aida. Performed by Adrianna Trachell, Alison Wilholt, and Jessica De Maria.

“Fortune Favors the Brave” from Aida. Performed by Fenner Eaddy, Chase Peacock, Haden Rider, J. Koby Parker, and George Deavours.

“A Step Too Far” from Aida. Performed by Jessica De Maria, Fenner Eaddy, and Adrianna Trachell.

“Easy as Life” from Aida. Performed by Adrianna Trachell.

After the Aida performances, I heard the woman in front of me say to her friend, “You have no idea what it’s like just from this music! It’s so good! It’s going to knock your socks off!”

Not captured: that moment when the Newsies poster appeared on the screen, and the whole audience lost it.

“Carrying the Banner” from Newsies. Performed by Chase Peacock, Haden Rider, J. Koby Parker, Fenner Eaddy, George Deavours, Alison Wilholt, Adrianna Trachell, and Jessica De Maria.

“Santa Fe” from Newsies. Performed by our favorite Quasimodo, Haden Rider.

“Something to Believe In” from Newsies. Performed by Chase Peacock and Jessica De Maria.

“It’s Your Wedding Day” from The Wedding Singer. Performed by Alison Wilholt, J. Koby Parker, and company.

“Someday” from The Wedding Singer. Performed by J. Koby Parker and Alison Wilholt.

“Grow Old with You” from The Wedding Singer. J. Koby Parker and Alison Wilholt.

“Singin’ in the Rain” from Rent. Jokes. It’s from Singin’ in the Rain. But I almost had you fooled, right? Performed by Chase Peacock.

No video because live-Tweeting called, but next was “You Were Meant for Me” from Singin’ in the Rain. Performed by Fenner Eaddy.

“Good Mornin'” from Singin’ in the Rain. Performed by Adrianna Trachell, Haden Rider, and J. Koby Parker.

“Oom-Pah-Pah” from Oliver! Performed by the company. 

“You’ve Got to Pick a Pocket or Two” from Oliver! Performed by George Deavours.

“As Long as He Needs Me” from Oliver! Performed by Jessica De Maria.

And how could they end the night with any encore but the rousing “Seize the Day” from Newsies? I’m living for how much the ladies are living for this song.

STREAMERS!! Mary Nye Bennett turned to me after the song, streamer cannon still in hand, and excitedly asked, “Did you get the streamers on your video?!”

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Top 5 Performances to Catch in Atlanta This Fall

In a city now full of pumpkin spice lattes, hay rides, and flannels, local theatres are bringing their Halloween A-game to round out this fall in Atlanta. From immersive outdoor experiences to Hitchcock classics, our Atlanta theatre fam has it all!

But how to choose which shows to attend? Check out BroadwayGinger’s top five spooky theatre picks!

Photo Flash: Aurora Theatre to Stage Crucible Sequel ABIGAIL/1702

Abigail/1702 at Aurora Theatre

When: Now through October 15

Elevator pitch: Diany Rodriguez is the bomb.com under normal circumstances, but in this show, she’s non-stop, taking her talent to the next level.

But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? The Devil. Flashbacks. The scariest surprise goat of all time. This one-act sequel to Arthur Miller’s The Crucible is as thought-provoking as it is terrifying.

Get those tickets!

Check it out! Interview: Diany Rodriguez Humanizes a Familiar Antagonist in ABIGAIL/1702 at Aurora Theatre

Vivian at the Lyric (Studio Theatre in the Square)

When: October 11-14

Elevator pitch: A brand new musical premiering right in Atlanta? Sounds like we Atlanta theatre nerds will get bragging rights for dayyyyys!

But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? The Lyric’s studio space creates an intimate experience perfect for a spooky musical. Written by our own local theatre artists Chase Peacock and Jessica De Maria, this mysterious ghost story promises its fair share of intrigue.

Get those tickets!

Click here to check out BroadwayGinger’s review of Vivian!

The Sleepy Hollow Experience at Serenbe Playhouse

When: Now through November 5

Elevator pitch: What’s scarier than a Halloween show? A Halloween experience in the woods.

But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? Serenbe can do no wrong. Their consistently inventive work never fails to expand the bounds of what’s possible in the theatre world. So now bringing a new adaptation of their annual Sleepy Hollow Experience,

Get those tickets!

DIAL M FOR MURDER

Dial M for Murder at Stage Door Players

When: Now through October 15

Elevator pitch: As a rule, I’m on board with anything involving the phrase “perfect murder” and “Hitchcockian.”

But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? No Halloween season is complete with out a good, old-fashioned murder mystery. Even those of us who haven’t seen the 1954 Alfred Hitchcock movie of the same name know Stage Door’s show is bound to include twists and turns and unexpected gasp/scream/jump/grab the arm of the stranger next to you moments.

Get those tickets!

Sense and Sensibility at Synchronicity (say that five times fast)

When: Now through October 15

Elevator pitch:  Ok, so it’s not spooky. But I mean, Jane Freaking Austen. Need I say more?

But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? I like to call Synchronicity a hidden gem of Atlanta theatre. Housed in a shared space, they aren’t the most conspicuous venue in our city, but I completely trust their play choices and execution of them. I have yet to be disappointed by a work there.

Get those tickets!

 

 

It’s Too Darn Hot, so Check out Atlanta’s Top 5 Must-See Shows this Summer!

dancing handkerchief at theatrical outfit

Summer in the South can be downright miserable without proper distraction from the heat.

Fortunately for us, the Atlanta theatre family is offering ample distractions in the forms of some rockin’ shows all summer long! From parks to beloved local venues, ITP to OTP, this season in Atlanta has us counting ourselves lucky to be southerners. Now that all of our interstates are back in place (BLESS), let’s celebrate by venturing all around the city and laughing as we sail through.

beauty and the beast lyric

Beauty and the Beast at the Atlanta Lyric Theatre

When: June 9-25
Elevator pitch: I mean first of all, it’s one of the best Disney musicals ever. As for the timing, God bless the Lyric for capitalizing on the recent release of the Emma Watson movie. I give them 5 stars and a cookie for this decision. But better than the movie, this version will include the songs written for the Broadway show, including my personal favs, “If I Can’t Love Her,” and “If I Can’t Love Her (reprise).” (although, tbh I could go my whole life without hearing “Human Again” again)
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? But to get right down to the point, the big draw for me is seeing the hilarious Jeff McKerley work his antics as Lumiere. Y’all, I would watch this man read the phone book. Serious question: is that a thing?
Get those tickets!

dancing handkerchief 2

The Dancing Handkerchief at Theatrical Outfit

When: June 1-18
Elevator pitch: To close their 40th season, Theatrical Outfit is bringing us a brand new musical that has yet to see the light of day. According to TO, this world premiere “blends the emotional accessibility of Disney princesses with the odd-ball pop-rock sensibility of Sergeant Pepper or Ziggy Stardust and evokes the imagined lands of Narnia and Alice’s Wonderland.” Literally, what’s not to like?
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? Get excited y’all, because the songs are written by the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award-winning Robert Lopez, who brought us FROZEN, AVENUE Q, and THE BOOK OF MORMON! I, for one, will be on the edge of my seat waiting for the next Lopez earworm.
Get those tickets!

robin hood serenbe

Robin Hood at Serenbe Playhouse

When: June 2-August 13
Elevator pitch: When’s the last time you remember hearing about a stage production of ROBIN HOOD? (Your nephew’s middle school play doesn’t count) The oh so familiar story of the good guy running through the woods, robbing the rich to feed the poor, and romancing a fair maiden in the process is perfect subject material for this creatively outdoor theatre.
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? It’s no secret that this spring’s fabulous production of GREASE made me promise myself I’d never miss another Serenbe show (see: 10 Reasons You Can’t Miss GREASE at Serenbe). I’m excited to see a refreshingly fun, family-friendly adventure story. And how often do you get to see a woodsy play actually take place in nature?
Get those tickets!

memphis aurora

Memphis (AGAIN!) from Aurora

When: May 20 on the Suwanee Town Square
Elevator pitch: If you hate FREE Tony Award-winning musicals with infectious music and uncontrollably awesome dancing, skip this one. But if you’re human, the millionth reincarnation of Aurora Theatre/Theatrical Outfit’s MEMPHIS will kick off your Atlanta summer with just the right combination of excitement and inspiration.
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? I fell in love with MEMPHIS when I saw the original Broadway cast and first tour, and I can tell you Aurora’s production was just as good. With dynamite vocals and endless, lovable energy, Travis Smith’s Huey Calhoun is not to be missed.
Get those tickets!

nobody loves you horizon

Nobody Loves You from Horizon Theatre

When/Where: June 14-17 at Piedmont Park
Elevator pitch: Can we just agree that it’s a crime to not go see a FREE musical? Ok perfect. Now that’s out of the way… Horizon has been the real MVP of the Atlanta theatre scene for the last few years as they have brought back crowd favorites- usually starring local stud Nick Arapoglou, if we’re being honest- for free encore performances in a popular Atlanta hangout spot.
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? As a general rule, I’d pay to see Leslie Bellair work her comedic magic any day of the week (see: her single-handed portrayal of a two-character fight in TOXIC AVENGER). If it’s free, that’s what you’d call a no-brainer.
Get those tickets!

in the heights aurora

BONUS: In the Heights from Aurora Theatre

When/Where: June 17 at the Duluth Town Green
Elevator pitch: Free shows on free shows, y’all! Honestly, this is an easy one. Before there was HAMILTON (the musical, not the historical figure), almost-EGOT-er Lin-Manuel Miranda penned a semi-autobiographical musical called IN THE HEIGHTS. This encore performance of Aurora/Theatrical Outfit’s non-stop Dominican party about the importance of family and identity closes out the Lawrenceville company’s FREE Musicals by Moonlight series with a bang.
But really, why fight Atlanta traffic? Opening Aurora’s new season late last summer, IN THE HEIGHTS perfectly combines musical theatre rap- which is apparently a thing now- with endearing characters and a heartfelt message. But let’s be real, the endlessly talented Julissa Sabino as Vanessa makes attending this show a moral imperative.
Get those tickets!

Hit me up on Twitter (@BwayGinger) and tell me which shows you’re hype for this summer!