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Live Theater Returns as Spotlights Goes Into the Woods!
Broadview Heights, OH – August 5, 2021
After 18 months, the Broadview Heights Spotlights’ stage will no longer be dark. Rehearsals have already begun for Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim, and the excitement is palpable for the 20-person cast that will be bringing this show to life.
Originally scheduled to open in November of 2020, Into the Woods was postponed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. The Spotlights has been carefully evaluating its options since March of last year. “We had a wonderful season planned for 2020, and halfway through the run of our second production, we had to close. After that, each monthly meeting was pretty somber because we just had to keep canceling things,” says Tim Anderson, Spotlights’ Education Director. “We made the decision to announce one project at a time to prevent disappointment fatigue.” Despite the impossibility of live, in-person performances in the theater’s newly built 3200-square-foot performance space, the theater still presented four successful virtual performances and its annual outdoor “Local Lore Ghost Walk” during the past year.
The Spotlights decided to relaunch with this show because of its themes and familiarity to the community. The winner of the 1988 Tony Award for Best Musical, Into the Woods, cleverly tells the familiar stories of well-known fairy-tale characters including Little Red Riding Hood, Jack (of beanstalk fame), Cinderella, Rapunzel, and a Baker and his Wife. But once all of these characters get their wishes, the consequences of their actions return to haunt them. In the end, getting exactly what one wants isn’t what one might think. “The ‘woods’ are a metaphor for all of the challenges that interrupt our lives and change their trajectory - the crisis points that we all have to go through to become who and what we want to be,” says Director and Spotlights Trustee Ryan Bergeron. “Sometimes you choose the challenge, and sometimes it chooses you. Either way, the journey leaves you changed - whether it is for better or worse is largely up to us. Coming out of the last 18 months, we could think of no other story with more resonance and relevance.”
The Spotlights’ production is directed and musically directed by Ryan Bergeron, with musical staging by Trish Hostettler and technical design by Tim Anderson. The cast includes Emily Beck, Riley Beight, Roxanna Bell, Abbey Brinkhoff, Glorietta Burks, Kyla Burks, Brenton Cochran, Tara Corkery, Livy Douglas, Corey East, Karen Johnston, Andrew Keller, Jacob Lang, Peggy Newton, Britt Paige, Sarah Price, Marco Quiroz, Kassie Schill, Thomas Wenz, and Natalie Zenczak.
The show will run Fridays and Saturdays, September 24 – October 9 at 7:30 PM. A Sunday matinee on October 3 will start at 3:00 PM. Tickets are $17 for adults and $14 for students and seniors and may be purchased at www.broadview-heights-spotlights.org. Please see the website for up-to-date audience Covid-19 health and safety protocols.
Also, keep an eye out for the return of the “Local Lore Ghost Walk,” October 22-24. The Spotlights will also be one of 1500 theaters participating in the international theatrical event, All Together Now, November 12 – 14. Featuring songs from famous Broadway musicals, this one-weekend only revue is presented in partnership with Musical Theatre International to celebrate the worldwide return of live theater.