Artistic Directors Douglas Aibel and Sarah Stern announce the cast for the first show of Vineyard Theatre’s 2015-2016 season, the musical comedy GIGANTIC, beginning previews at The Acorn Theatre at Theatre Row (410 West 42nd Street) on November 11.
The cast will include Andrew Durand (WAR HORSE, SPRING AWAKENING), Jennifer Geller (BRING IT ON: THE MUSICAL National Tour), Leslie Kritzer (HAIRSPRAY, LEGALLY BLONDE: THE MUSICAL), Katie Ladner (HEATHERS: THE MUSICAL), Jared Loftin, Taylor Louderman (BRING IT ON: THE MUSICAL, “Peter Pan Live”), Bonnie Milligan (KINKY BOOTS First National Tour), Burke Moses (BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, KISS ME KATE), Larry Owens, Cole Ragsdale, Ryann Redmond (IF/THEN, BRING IT ON: THE MUSICAL), MiMi Scardulla, Nyla Watson, Kalyn West, and Max Wilcox (“Glee”).
Getting shipped off to weight-loss camp is hardly Robert’s idea of the perfect summer, but even he isn’t prepared for what can be lost or gained at Camp Overton, the No. 3 weight-loss camp in Southern Pennsylvania. With biting humor and irreverence, GIGANTIC tackles the growing pains of adolescence through the experiences of a bunch of misfit teens forced to find solace in one another as they look — inside and out — for acceptance, a hot make-out session, and the last contraband Butterfinger.
GIGANTIC will begin previews November 11, open December 3 and play until December 20. GIGANTIC features a book by Randy Blair and Tim Drucker, music by Matthew roi Berger, lyrics by Randy Blair, choreography by Chase Brock (SPIDER-MAN TURN OFF THE DARK) and will be directed by Scott Schwartz (BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL).
GIGANTIC will feature set design by Timothy R. Mackabee (THE ELEPHANT MAN), costume design by Gregory Gale (ROCK OF AGES), lighting design by Jeff Croiter (SOMETHING ROTTEN!) and sound design by John Shivers (KINKY BOOTS) and David Patridge (HOLLER IF YOU HEAR ME). Music supervision, arrangements and orchestrations are by Dominick Amendum (FIRST DATE). Musical direction is by Aaron Jodoin (FIRST DATE) and casting is by Michael Cassara, CSA.
An earlier version of GIGANTIC was presented in development at the New York Musical Theatre Festival in 2009 with the title FAT CAMP, where it received the “Best of Fest Award.”
Randy Blair is the conceiver and co-creator of the musicals PEREZ HILTON SAVES THE UNIVERSE (Best Musical FringeNYC), FAT CAMP (NYMF Best of Fest), and SPIDERMUSICAL. Other works include HAUTE MESS and THE OTHER BARRYMORES (Ars Nova), RUFF (#serials at The Flea), and Leslie Kritzer’s BEAUTIFUL DISASTER (Joe’s Pub). He is also a contributing writer for TV’s “Billy on the Street.” As an actor, Randy most recently appeared in the critically acclaimed musical adaptation of AMELIE at Berkeley Rep.
Tim Drucker, with Randy Blair, has written the books to PEREZ HILTON SAVES THE UNIVERSE (Best Musical FringeNYC), FAT CAMP (NYMF Best of Fest), and SPIDERMUSICAL. Other works include HAUTE MESS (Ars Nova, The Other Baldwins) and RUFF (#serials at The Flea). Directing work includes the Off-Broadway productions of SEX TIPS FOR STRAIGHT WOMEN…, SPIDERMUSICAL, and STINKYKIDS! (Vital Theater, Off-Broadway Alliance Award Best Family Musical).
Matthew roi Berger is a New York City-based songwriter and the composer for films and stage works, including New York Musical Theatre Festival’s Best of Fest Award-winning FAT CAMP, the indie cult fav SPIDERMUSICAL, and New York Neo-Classical Ensemble’s TWELFTH NIGHT. He has written music for the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the Old Vic’s Arden Project and UC Santa Barbara, among others. Matt is the guitarist and songwriter for Teen Girl Scientist Monthly, and a graduate of NYU Tisch’s Experimental Theater Wing.
Scott Schwartz directed the Broadway productions of GOLDA’S BALCONY and JANE EYRE (co-directed with John Caird). His Off-Broadway work includes MURDER FOR TWO, BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL (Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Awards, Outstanding Off Broadway Musical; Drama Desk Award nomination, Outstanding Director of a Musical), tick, tick…BOOM! (Outer Critics Circle, Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical; Drama Desk nomination, Outstanding Director of a Musical), THE FOREIGNER starring Matthew Broderick, ROOMS: A ROCK ROMANCE, KAFKA’S THE CASTLE (Outer Critics Circle nomination, Outstanding Director of a Play), and NO WAY TO TREAT A LADY. He also directed MURDER FOR TWO in its current US tour and GOLDA’S BALCONY on tour, in London, in Los Angeles at the Wadsworth Theatre and in San Francisco at American Conservatory Theatre. He directed the World Premiere of SÉANCE ON A WET AFTERNOON starring Lauren Flanigan at Opera Santa Barbara and subsequently at New York City Opera. Schwartz’s other recent credits include the US premiere of Disney’s THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME at La Jolla Playhouse and Paper Mill Playhouse, the world premiere of Theresa Rebeck’s WHAT WE’RE UP AGAINST and MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING and OTHELLO at the Alley Theatre, the world premiere of SECONDHAND LIONS at the 5th Avenue, and the world premiere of CONVICTION at Bay Street Theater. Regional theaters include: Arizona Theatre Company, Asolo Rep, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Cleveland Playhouse, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, Dallas Theatre Center, Denver Center, Geffen Playhouse, Goodspeed, La Jolla Playhouse, Old Globe, Paper Mill Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, PCPA, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Portland Center Stage, Rubicon, Signature Theatre, Theatreworks, Virginia Stage Company, Westport Country Playhouse and others. Schwartz is the Artistic Director of Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor, NY, and is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, an Associate Artist at the Alley Theatre and a graduate of Harvard University.
As previously announced, the 2015-2016 season will also see the return of several Vineyard artists. In early 2016, Tony Award-winner Susan Stroman (THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS) returns to direct the second play of the season, DOT, by Colman Domingo (A BOY AND HIS SOUL). Later in the season, The Vineyard welcomes back Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel (HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE, THE LONG CHRISTMAS RIDE HOME) with INDECENT — a new play created with award-winning director Rebecca Taichman (STAGE KISS) — scheduled for its New York debut in the spring of 2016.