‘On the town’ at UCO

The ro­man­tic com­edy fol­lows three starry-eyed sailors on their first trip to New York City.

The Oklahoman (Sunday) - - SUNDAY LIFE - FROM STAFF RE­PORTS

Ok­la­homa City Univer­sity cel­e­brates Leonard Bern­stein’s 100th birthday with its April 20-22 sea­son-fi­nale pro­duc­tion of his ac­claimed mu­si­cal "On the Town," fea­tur­ing a cast of 37 and a 32-piece orches­tra.

The ro­man­tic com­edy fol­lows three starry-eyed sailors on their first trip to New York City as they look for ad­ven­ture and ro­mance on their 24-hour shore leave. Bern­stein’s iconic score in­cludes one of Broad­way’s best­known show­tunes — New York, New York — and lyrics by Betty Com­den and Adolph Green.

OCU’s Ok­la­homa Opera and Mu­sic The­ater Com­pany will present three per­for­mances: 8 p.m. Fri­day and Satur­day, with a 3 p.m Sun­day mati­nee, in his­toric Kirk­patrick Au­di­to­rium, 2501 N. Black­welder, at the Wanda L. Bass School of Mu­sic.

Tick­ets ($14-28) avail­able by call­ing 405-2085227 or www.okcu.edu/ tick­ets. An open­ing night din­ner ($25) hosted by Dean Mark Parker will be held April 20 in the Atrium of the Bass Mu­sic Cen­ter.

Di­rec­tor Karen Coe Miller will present a free pre-show talk 45 min­utes be­fore cur­tain. Also on show’s cre­ative team are Matthew Mail­man, mu­si­cal di­rec­tor, and Tye Love, chore­og­ra­pher, of the Ann Lacy School of Amer­i­can Dance and En­ter­tain­ment.

“We’re for­tu­nate to have the depth of tal­ent at OCU to do jus­tice to this piece,” Miller said in a news re­lease. “Our stu­dents have the the singing, act­ing, danc­ing, and orches­tral chops — and the pro­duc­tion re­sources — to make this an ex­tra­or­di­nary sea­son fi­nale.”

"On the Town" has had three Broad­way re­vivals since its 1944 de­but, most re­cently in 2015. The show also in­spired the Os­car-win­ning film star­ring Gene Kelly and Frank Si­na­tra.

The mu­si­cal was one of the first on Broad­way to fuse story, song and dance into a uni­fied whole. The re­sult, de­scribed by Adam Green, son of the lyri­cist, is “a fresh, con­tem­po­rary hy­brid — the genre-mix­ing slap­stick book and nim­ble, heart­felt lyrics; the rav­ish­ing, jazz-in­flected sym­phonic score; the star­tling mod­ern bal­let-to-boo­giewoo­gie chore­og­ra­phy, puls­ing with erotic ur­ban en­ergy.”

The show is the fi­nale of the 66th sea­son for OCU’s Ok­la­homa Opera and Mu­sic The­ater Com­pany, the nation’s old­est cam­pus-based opera and mu­si­cal troupe. The com­pany has won five na­tional pro­duc­tion in the past six years from the Na­tional Opera As­so­ci­a­tion.

“This is the per­fect show for OCU to present as part of the world­wide cel­e­bra­tions of the 100th an­niver­sary of Leonard Bern­stein’s birth,” said Mark Parker, dean of the Bass School of Mu­sic, in a news re­lease. “On the Town was Broad­way’s in­tro­duc­tion to Amer­ica’ great­est mu­si­cian. Bern­stein was a world-renowned con­duc­tor — the first Amer­i­can to con­duct a ma­jor U.S. orches­tra — who led more than 300 record­ings of the world’s great­est or­ches­tras. He was a com­poser of opera, sym­phonies and hugely suc­cess­ful Broad­way shows. He also was a pi­o­neer­ing mu­sic ed­u­ca­tor, lead­ing more than 50 na­tion­wide broad­casts of young people’s con­certs with the New York Phil­har­monic. This show is our salute to his last­ing in­flu­ence on Amer­i­can mu­sic.”

For more in­for­ma­tion, go to www.okcu.edu/ mu­sic or www.face­book.com/basss­choolof­mu­sic.

[PHOTO PRO­VIDED]

Ok­la­homa

City Univer­sity will cel­e­brate Leonard Bern­stein’s 100th birthday with its April 20-22 sea­son-fi­nale pro­duc­tion of his ac­claimed mu­si­cal “On the Town.”

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