Rehearsals are underway for Saint Vincent Summer Theatre’s production of “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast,” which opens Thursday, June 27, in the Performing Arts Center in the Robert S. Carey Student Center on the campus of Saint Vincent College.
Based on Disney’s Academy Award-winning animated feature, the story tells of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved in return, the spell will be broken and he will be transformed into his former self. But, if the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his staff will be doomed for all time.
One of Disney’s most famous and successful productions, “Beauty and the Beast” has been produced in 37 countries worldwide. The original Broadway production ran for more than 13 years and was nominated for nine Tony Awards, including Best Musical.
“The stage version includes wonderful songs written by Alan Menken and the late Howard Ashman,” said Greggory Brandt, Saint Vincent producing artistic director, “along with new songs by Menken and Tim Rice. This ‘tale as old as time’ is filled with spectacular costumes, memorable songs and stunning set pieces which offers a great opportunity for fun, family theater at its best.”
The show will feature a cast of 34, the largest in the 51-year history of Saint Vincent Summer Theatre. Lead roles include Erika Strasburg as “Belle,” Brandon Schraml as “Beast,” Tim Hartman as “Lumiere,” Veronica Decker as “Mrs. Potts,” Robert Anthony Jones as “Cogsworth” and Regan McLellan as “Gaston.”
The preview performance is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., Thursday, June 27, while a sold-out performance on Friday, June 28, will headline the 30th annual Saint Vincent Summer Theatre Gala.
7:30 p.m. performances are scheduled for Saturday, June 29; Tuesday, July 2; Wednesday, July 3; Friday, July 5; and Saturday July 6. Five matinee performances, beginning at 2 p.m., are also scheduled for Saturday, June 29; Sunday, June 30; Wednesday, July 3; Saturday, July 6; and the show’s finale on Sunday, July 7.
Tickets are available for purchase online, or by calling the Saint Vincent box office at 724-537-8900 between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays. Individual tickets are $15 for the June 27 preview performance, $23 for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings, $26 for Friday and Saturday evenings and $20 for all matinees. Special group rate sales apply to groups of at least 20 guests. Senior citizens aged 62 or older may receive a discount of $2 per ticket on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” is the second of three shows of the 51st season of Saint Vincent Summer Theatre. It follows a successful run of the musical “Forever Plaid,” which was staged May 23 – June 2, while “Always … Patsy Cline” is slated to run from Aug. 1-11.
Throughout its 51st season, Saint Vincent Summer Theatre will continue to feature its well-known Cabaret, the special post-show reception to which all theatre patrons are invited. Snacks, hot dogs and beverages will be served while patrons will be treated to entertainment. Funded solely through gifts from patrons, theatre officials encourage donations as little as $5 from those who enjoy themselves at this festive after-the-show party. The Cabaret is open after all performances except the Thursday preview show and matinees.