Hoopla

Eastern Iowa theatre companies gearing up for new seasons

Including a Grant Wood-themed premiere

Audience members applaud at CSPS in Cedar Rapids on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017. ©2017 The Gazette
Audience members applaud at CSPS in Cedar Rapids on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017. ©2017 The Gazette

Here’s a glimpse into the new seasons at various arts venues.

CEDAR RAPIDS OPERA THEATRE

“Of Rebels and Romance”

Held in intimate Eastern Iowa venues, the 21st season features works that embrace the rebellious, the romantic and the trailblazing.

January: “The Threepenny Opera,” the revolutionary “play with music,” by Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, at CSPS Hall, 1103 Third St. SE, Cedar Rapids. Tickets available in the fall at Legionarts.org or (319) 364-1580. Also in January: free outreach children’s production of “The Ugly Duckling” by Andrew Duncan, touring Cedar Rapids schools, as well as community performances.

April 2019: “The Grant Wood Operas: Strokes of Genius,” Theatre Cedar Rapids, 102 Third St. SE. The jewel of the season, this world premiere is a commissioned production encompassing three pieces by Iowa-based composers Jean-Francois Charles, Michael Ching and Robert Lindsey-Nassif. The works range from whimsical to historical to experimental as they explore through music and performance the work and life of artist and Cedar Rapids native, Grant Wood. Tickets on sale in January at Theatrecr.org or (319) 366-8591. 

June 2019: “The Desert Song,” by Romburg, Hammerstein II, Harback and Mandel, Brucemore outdoor stage, 2160 Linden Dr. SE, Cedar Rapids. In this romantic operetta set in the Moroccan desert, the dashingly mysterious French military hero, The Red Shadow, hides his true identity, although it may keep him from being with the woman that he loves. Tickets on sale May 2019 at Brucemore.org or (319) 362-7375.

January 2020: Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre returns to the Paramount Theatre with Orchestra Iowa. Details: Cr-opera.org

CITY CIRCLE ACTING COMPANY

Resident theater company at Coralville Center for the Performing Arts, 1301 Fifth St., Coralville.

“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,” Sept. 28 to 30. This 2015 Tony Award-winning play is based on Mark Haddon’s internationally best-selling novel. 

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“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast,” Dec. 7 to 16. For the holidays, a lavish family musical filled with spectacular costumes and memorable songs by Alan Menken, Howard Ashman and Tim Rice.

“The Who’s Tommy,” Feb. 15 to 17. Concert version of this five-time Tony Award-winning musical based on the iconic 1969 rock concept album 

“The Scarlet Pimpernel,” May 3 to 12, 2019. A swashbuckling adventure musical based on Baroness Orczy’s novel about the French Revolution and the battle for liberty, equality and fraternity. This musical opens a window into 18th century French and British history.

City Circle’s annual teen musical, June 14 to 22, 2019. Chris Okiishi and Leslie Nolte will direct a recent Broadway hit, which will be announced in March 2019. Ticket information: Coralvillearts.org

REVIVAL THEATRE COMPANY

Revival Theatre Company’s 2018 season continues with: 

“The Bridges of Madison County,” May 31 to June 3, Dows Theatre, Coe College, 1220 First Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids. Based on the best-selling novel set in Iowa, the Tony-winning musical captures the lyrical expanse of America’s heartland in this “what if” tale. This sweeping romance is about the roads we travel, the doors we open and the bridges we dare to cross. Tickets: $20 to $40

“Sunday in the Park with George,” Nov. 15 to 18, Sinclair Auditorium, Coe College, 1220 First Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids. Inspired by George Seurat’s famous painting, “Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,” this Stephen Sondheim musical merges past and present into poignant truths about life, love and the creation of art. This character study of Seurat won a Pulitzer Prize and was nominated for 10 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Tickets: $20 to $40. Information: Revivaltheatrecompany.com

DES MOINES PERFORMING ARTS

Due to strong demand for 2018-19 Willis Broadway Series season tickets, Des Moines Performing Arts is establishing a waitlist for individuals wishing to purchase new season tickets. Current season ticket holders wishing to renew their tickets have until May 18. To sign up for the waitlist, go to Desmoinesperformingarts.org/season-tickets/willis-broadway-series/

Six-show season ticket package:

  • Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Love Never Dies,” Oct. 16 to 21
  • Disney’s “Aladdin,” Nov. 28 to Dec. 9
  • “Dear Evan Hansen,” Feb. 5 to 10
  • “Hello, Dolly!” April 9 to 14, 2019
  • Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “School of Rock — The Musical,” April 30 to May 5
  • “The Play That Goes Wrong,” June 25 to 30, 2019
  • Season ticket package add-ons
  • “Finding Neverland: The Musical,” Dec. 27 to 29
  • “Bat Out Of Hell: The Musical,” Feb. 26 to March 3
  • “Rock of Ages,” March 8 to 10
  • Brian Stokes Mitchell and Megan Hilty in concert with the Des Moines Symphony, May 11, 2019

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