Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

All New Shows at Players

Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

All New Shows at Players

Article excerpt

For its 86th season, the Players Theatre is celebrating what makes it unique in the community with a lineup of classic and new musicals and a couple of offbeat comedies.

All the shows are new to the Players and two are area premieres.

While planning the new season, artistic director Jeffery Kin said he had in mind "what makes us different, how have we survived and how are we showing growth over the years and still creating magic."

He revealed his choices at a reception Friday night for donors and sponsors.

The season opens Sept. 30 with the comedy mystery "The 39 Steps," Patrick Barlow's Broadway hit adapted from a novel by John Buchan and an Alfred Hitchcock film.

It's about an Englishman who gets drawn into a web of murder and mystery and tries to figure out a solution. Three actors plays dozens of characters with quick costume changes.

"It's so much fun and so innately theatrical," Kin said.

It will be followed by the area premiere of "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang," a stage version of the film about an inventor who creates a flying car. It is based on a story by James Bond creator Ian Fleming.

The production will feature a car that flies and tilts on stage, Kin said.

The 1960s musical "She Loves Me," about two co-workers in a Budapest perfume shop in the 1930s who dislike each other and don't realize they have been carrying on a romantic private correspondence. The story was the basis for the film "You've Got Mail."

The musical features songs by "Fiddler on the Roof" creators Sheldon Harnick and Jerry Bock.

"I can't believe we've never done the show at the Players," Kin said, also noting that "La Cage aux Folles" later in the season is another newcomer to the community theater's stage.

That musical, with a score by Jerry Herman is about the clash between two gay men, one of them a drag star, and their conservative future in-laws.

Kin said he worried the show might be dated with changing attitudes and laws about same-sex marriage. …

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