Music Theatre Company’s new season includes Billy Corgan work

Musician, author and Highland Park businessman Billy Corgan. | File
Musician, author and Highland Park businessman Billy Corgan. | File
Oct. 17 5:18 p.m.

Founding Artistic Director Jessica Beth Redish and Co-Artistic Director Jess McLeod have announced The Music Theatre Company’s 2014-2015 season, which begins Dec. 4 and runs through August 2015.

The season includes a 20-minute world premiere musical by Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan, an evening about the making of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Allegro at Ravinia Festival, and presentations of new musicals previously commissioned by TMTC: Mill Girls, Book by Samantha Beach and Music & Lyrics by Diana Lawrence, and The 9/11 Report, Conceived by Founding Artistic Director Jessica Beth Redish, with Music & Lyrics by Michael Mahler.

The 48-Hour Musicals: Encore! (December 4-14, 2014) — The 48-Hour Musicals, for which 15-minute musicals are created in 48 hours, has been an annual mainstay of the TMTC season since 2008. Featuring the world-premiere presentation of a new 20-minute musical by Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan based on the Eleusinian Mysteries, TMTC reprises four short works which have inspired future commissions from TMTC, including: Tereshkova by Scotty Arnold; Postcards from Paris by Associate Artist Diana Lawrence, CHASE by Associate Artist Michael Mahler, and Reception by J. Oconer Navarro. Co-Artistic Director Jess McLeod directs and Founding Artistic Director Jessica Beth Redish choreographs.

Said Corgan: “My interest in musical theatre has grown throughout the years. Ms. Redish, I believe, is a visionary; she’s inspired me to jump into the narrative form in a fresh way. A work, when composed, should afford her choreography a supple support, and myself as writer new territory.”

The 48-Hour Musicals: Encore! will be presented at TMTC’s space at 1850 Green Bay Road in Highland Park. Encore! plays Thursdays-Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at2pm. Tickets for The 48-Hour Musicals are $35 for the preview performance (December 4) and $40 for regular performances (December 5-14).

OSCAR & RICHARD & JOE: An Evening about Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Allegro (Jan. 31, 2015) — TMTC joins forces with Ravinia Festival to create a one-night-only event: a musical exploration of Allegro. After the immense popularity of Oklahoma! and Carousel, the now-legendary team undertook a revolutionary new musical,Allegro. The show sharply divided critics, but Stephen Sondheim, who served as a production assistant on the original production, found much to admire. The evening will explore the context of the musical through theatrical footnotes of its history and legacy, as well as showcase key moments and songs from this rarely-produced gem. Conceived and Directed by Jessica Beth Redish, Written by Scotty Arnold, OSCAR & RICHARD & JOE features songs from Allegro, Music by Richard Rodgers, Book & Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II.OSCAR & RICHARD & JOE will be presented in Ravinia Festival’s Bennett Gordon Hall on January 31, at 8:00pm. Tickets are $10.

Mill Girls (Summer 2015) — Mill Girls, originally commissioned and developed by TMTC in 2014, is a smart, feisty new musical about the young women who left small towns behind to earn higher wages at the newly-built cotton factories of Lowell, Massachusetts. These bright, hungry workers used their paychecks to pay down family debt, send their brothers to college, and take advantage of Lowell’s cultural offerings. But when conditions worsened, the Mill Girls were forced to choose: cling to their jobs at all costs, or stand against the factories. Conceived and directed by Co-Artistic Director Jess McLeod and choreographed by Founding Artistic Director Jessica Beth Redish, Mill Girls features Music & Lyrics by TMTC Associate Artist Diana Lawrence and Book by Samantha Beach.

The 9/11 Report (Summer 2015) — Originally commissioned and developed by TMTC, The 9/11 Report explores the 9/11 Commission’s Report and the myriad perspectives, agendas, and failures of imagination surrounding the darkest day in modern American history. This folk-rock music theatre piece is Conceived and Adapted by Founding Artistic Director Jessica Beth Redish, who directs and choreographs, and features Music & Lyrics by Jeff Award winner Michael Mahler, with spoken word poetry by Oron Stenesh.

To purchase tickets or for more information, call (847) 579-4900 or visit www.themusictheatrecompany.org.

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