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Beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein Musical To Start Four-Show Season That Will Also Include Tony Award-Winning Shows The 25th Anniversary Putnam County Spelling Bee
The High-Flying Farce Boeing-Boeing And A Return to Tuna, Texas For A Tuna Christmas

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – February 19, 2010 – Given our recent weather woes, dreams of rolling green hills can’t be far from anyone’s mind.  And now, thanks to Heritage Theatre Festival, our own hills are set to come alive with a beloved and familiar sound this summer.

Heritage Theatre Festival officials announced that The Sound of Music will kick off the 2010 season.  The all-time classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical will open at Culbreth Theatre on July 1.

The season will include four shows in all, each presented at the Culbreth Theatre.  The shows will also include:

  • The Tony Award-winning musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
  • The sky-high French farce Boeing-Boeing
  • A return to Tuna, Texas for the warm weather holiday treat A Tuna Christmas

“This summer at Heritage will be about putting fun center stage,” said Heritage Producing Director Robert Chapel. “Theatre does not get much more fun, or more classic, than The Sound of Music. Like Oliver! did last year, we look for this show to engage theatre lovers and newcomers alike, and of course to provide the perfect family entertainment experience at the same time.  I’ve long wanted to do The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and think that audiences of all ages will love to follow along, and even spell along, with its cast of quirky overachievers.  I’ve loved the play Boeing-Boeing since seeing it a while ago on Broadway and am very excited to share this modern French farce with our audiences.  And finally, the supremely talented duo of Evan Bridenstein and J.P. Scheidler return once again to bring audiences to tears of laughter by transporting them back to weird and wacky Tuna, Texas.  As Heritage fans know by now, it’s a place where anything can happen…and probably has!  This time, in A Tuna Christmas, it’s the holidays that have the citizens at a fever pitch, and if you know these citizens, you can only imagine the kind of hilarity that might bring. It's Christmas in July in the Culbreth!”

All evening performances for the 2010 Heritage Theatre Festival season will be at 7:30 and each show will feature one 2PM matinee performance.

Since its Broadway debut in 1959, The Sound of Music has captivated audiences worldwide with its inimitable charm and a nearly unparalleled collection of unforgettable songs.  The final collaboration between Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein yielded an embarrassment of classic riches ranging from Do-Re-Mi to Edelweiss, My Favorite Things, So Long, Farewell and many more, while making the legendary von Trapps the unofficial first family of musical theater.

The Sound of Music (Music by Richard Rodgers, Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein and Book by Lindsay and Russel Crouse) will be presented at Culbreth Theatre from July 1-3 and July 5-10. There will be a matinee performance on July 10th.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee premiered Off-Broadway in 2005 to rave reviews and great box office success.  It was not long before the quirky tale of geeky overachievers and their equally geeky adult counterparts had become a true sensation, spawning a wildly successful national tour and legions of devoted fans who flocked to literally be part of the action.  Each show puts four volunteer audience members in the spotlight as they are called onstage to show off their talents (“Weltanschauung,” anyone?), joining the cast and lasting until their abilities and/or luck run out and they are sent back to their seats.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Music and Lyrics by William Finn and Book by Rachel Shenkin), will be presented at Culbreth Theatre from July 29-31 and August 4th and 7th.  The matinee performance will be on August 7th.

A literally high-flying playboy juggling three flight attendant love interests sets the stage for the kind of chaos only a fabulous French farce can deliver in Boeing- Boeing. Bernard, a successful Parisian architect, arranges his daring feats of deception like clockwork, engaging the help of a long-suffering housekeeper and trusted friend.  However, all of their efforts are thrown into turmoil with the arrival of a new, faster jet to the Boeing fleet.  First staged in London in 1962, the show has enjoyed successful runs around the world and captured the 2008 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play.

Boeing- Boeing, by Marc Camoletti, and adapted by Beverley Cross, will run at Culbreth Theatre from July 15-17 and on August 2nd and 5th.  There will be a matinee performance on July 17th.

Things get hot and spicy in a hurry in Tuna, Texas, even at Christmastime.  In fact, especially at Christmastime!  A Tuna Christmas offers Heritage audiences a chance to take a hilarious round trip to a tiny town with big issues.  Once again, Heritage favorites John Paul Scheidler and Evan Bridenstine return to bring more than 20 characters to life, complete with lightning fast costume changes and zingers that fly around the stage faster than a fur coat off a rich lady at a PETA convention.

A Tuna Christmas, by Ed Howard, Joe Sears and Jaston Williams, will run at Culbreth Theatre from July 22-24 and on August 3rd and 6th.  The matinee performance will be on July 24.

Season subscriptions for the 2010 Heritage Theatre Festival season will go on sale earlier this year.  Subscriptions will be available beginning at 10a.m. on May 24 at  www.uvahtf.org as well as by mail.  Single tickets and subscriptions will go on sale online, in-person and by phone at 10am on Friday, June 11. 

Box Office hours are 10am to 5pm Monday through Saturday from June 11th - August 7th, and opening again one hour before evening performances from 6:30pm to 7:30pm. 

For more information on the upcoming 2010 season at Heritage Theatre Festival, visit www.uvahtf.org.

Heritage Theatre Festival Publicist-
John Kelly
John Kelly PR