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Georgia Ensemble Theatre offers music, comedy, thrills in Roswell
by Joan Durbin
jdurbin@neighbornewspapers.com
July 31, 2013 11:01 AM | 1226 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
While many theatrical companies in the metro area are struggling, Georgia Ensemble Theatre is hitting high water marks of success.

“Our year-long 20th anniversary celebration during the 2012-13 theatre season resulted in Georgia Ensemble Theatre’s highest average attendance ever,” said theatre Artistic Director Bob Farley.

“The theatre is currently enjoying an 83 percent subscription renewal rate, remains financially stable and we have strengthened our staff, volunteers and board of trustees with Bob Hagan as the theatre’s new president. Georgia Ensemble’s partnership with the city of Roswell is stronger than ever, with the theatre recently signing a four-year lease to continuing producing at the Roswell Cultural Arts Center through 2017.”

Farley said he selected a season of productions “which challenges all of us as artists to excel beyond previous expectations, while at the same time we continue to fulfill our mission to captivate the current generation of theatre goers and nurture future generations.”

Kicking off the schedule is an evening of John Denver’s best music. For decades, Denver was a staple on radio playlists.

The theatre’s 21st season will open with a celebration of this music in “Almost Heaven: John Denver’s America.”

Part of the musical tapestry of the 60’s and 70’s, Denver’s music exuded honesty, passion, and love of nature and mankind.

“His songs have a way of soaring and hanging in the air with purpose and meaning for Denver fans and a whole new audience, perhaps more so since he actually sang them,” said Farley, who is directing the nostalgic musical.

It runs from Sept. 5 to 22 and features 29 of Denver’s songs, including “Rocky Mountain High,” “Sunshine on My Shoulders,” “Annie’s Song,” “Leaving on a Jet Plane,” “Calypso” and more.

Hitchcockian in its twists, turns and dry wit, Ira Levin’s “Death Trap” is a must see for theatergoers who like thrills, laughter and a terrific plot.

Sidney Bruhl, a successful writer of Broadway thrillers, is struggling to overcome a “dry” spell when he receives a script from a student. Sidney devises a devilish plan, with his wife’s help, to collaborate with the student.

But the playwright is prepared to go to any lengths to alter his fortunes, even murder.

Also directed by Farley, “Deathtrap” runs from Nov. 7 to 24. “‘Deathtrap’ is not only riotously funny, it provides some of the biggest thrills and chills to ever land on the American stage,” Farley said.

From the Atlanta playwright who brought “Tokens of Affection” and “Swell Party” to the theatre stage comes “The Only Light in Reno” Jan. 9 to 26.

Topher Payne’s newest is set in the 106-degree heat of Reno in August 1960. Filming on “The Misfits” is hopelessly behind schedule, the Sierra Mountains are on fire and Reno is in total blackout.

Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift are playing board games with an accused murderess and Marilyn Monroe is locked in the bathroom.

This world premiere comedy is directed by Shannon Eubanks.

Glamour and decadence are hallmarks of the Jazz Age and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” is a powerful portrait of that era.

Jay Gatsby, a self-made millionaire, passionately pursues the elusive Daisy Buchanan. Nick Carraway, a young newcomer to Long Island, is drawn into their world of obsession, greed and danger.

Adapted from the literary classic, the play is directed by Tess Malis Kincaid and runs Feb. 27 to March 16.

The lyrics which close the final show of the theatre season are poignant: “Don’t let it be forgot that once there was a spot for one brief shining moment that was known as Camelot.”

It’s a safe bet that no one who has ever seen and heard the musical, “Camelot,” ever will forget it.

From April 10 to 27, King Arthur, Queen Guenevere, Lancelot, Merlyn, and the Knights of the Round Table fill the theatre stage with their mythic quest for right, honor and justice. Along the way, they find love, broken hearts, intrigue and betrayal. The finale of the theatre season, the show has songs such as “How to Handle a Woman,” “If Ever I Would Leave You” and “What Do the Simple Folk Do?”

Regular season ticket prices range from $115 to $160 and individual tickets are also available. New this year, preview night subscriptions are $60, which include one ticket to the Wednesday night preview (the day before opening) of each show. Productions are still in rehearsal during previews and are subject to changes.

The theatre is the resident company at the Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St. in Roswell.

For tickets or more information, visit www.get.org or call (770) 641-1260.
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