Local actors hit Vilar
Editor’s note: Director’s Corner is a weekly column where Kris Sabel, who is in charge of cultural programming for the Vail Valley Foundations, gives his expert take on shows not to be missed.
If you’re like me I’m sure you feel that, once the Fourth of July is over, summer starts to slip through your fingers. We just kicked off our summer season last week with a sold out performance of Three Dog Night ” and already we are almost to the middle of July.
But fear not! Our summer concert series is just getting started, and there are still ample opportunities to get to the Vilar. Response to the line-up has been unbelievable. Many of our performances are almost sold out, so I encourage you to call the box office and get your tickets soon. It’s exciting to talk with people about the shows they can’t wait to see, or how they’ve seen one of our performers several times and can’t wait to experience them in the Vilar Center. Often, they ask me which is my favorite. While I can honestly say I like them all, the show I am most looking forward to is Joan Armatrading on July 15 ” but I will talk more about that next week. Today, I want to talk about the Vail Valley Theatre Company’s upcoming production of “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” on July 13 and 14.
This is a truly classic musical, with song and lyrics by Steven Sondheim. It is a brilliant mix of music and comedy ” inspired by the farces of the ancient Roman playwright Platus. In this hilarious, pun-filled, satirical story, you’ll find beautiful heroines, handsome heros, bumbling parents and lecherous old men ” truly something for everyone.
As a testament to its quality and status as an audience favorite, “Forum” has been revived many times since its Broadway debut in 1962, including a 1996 revival starring Nathan Lane as Pseudolus, a role for which he won a Tony award. There is also currently a National Tour of the show. I have been fortunate to be involved with several productions of the show and also saw a great revival at the National Theatre in London a few years ago. I always find something new and never tire of songs, story and witty gags. If you’ve never seen this production, I highly encourage you to come to the Vilar Center for what promises to be a rollicking good time.
And, of course, it’s always a pleasure to work with the amazing talent in our valley including Broadway star Beth Swearingen who will be directing. This is the same group that presents the perennial favorite “An Evening on Broadway” each February. Thanks to the Vilar Center Community Performance Fund, these incredibly talented local actors have the opportunity to perform in our wonderful center, with all the support of our professional production staff. The Fund underwrites this and many other community performances throughout the year, and we truly pride ourselves on fostering and enhancing the local performing arts community.
I hope to see you at the Vilar!