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Upcoming season announced for freeFall Theatre

Bill DeYoung

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Ebony Repertory Theatre's "Blues in the Night" comes to freeFall in 2023. Photo: Craig Schwartz.

It looks like the musical OZ, written by St. Petersburg’s Michael Raabe and Eric Davis and first announced for freeFall Theatre’s 2019-20 season, is finally going to see the light of day.

Based – in a manner of speaking – on the L. Frank Baum books about young Dorothy Gale, a wizard and some freaky friends, OZ was postponed numerous times by the pandemic, as freeFall – along with all the other regional professional theaters in the country – scrambled to find workable programming and make sense of an unprecedented situation.

It’s on the just-announced schedule for the 2022-23 season, to be onstage June 2-July 9, 2023.

OZ, according to the official description from freeFall, is about writer Baum himself. “This is the story of a dreamer at the dawn of a new age who reinvented the fairy tale in a distinctly American way, painting an idealized and magical vision of a world where witches might be good, and what you’re seeking is already inside you.”

The next season, as announced, looks like this:

All Things Equal: The Life and Trials of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Oct. 5-23, 2022) imagines 90 minutes “in chambers” with the inimitable RGB. It’s a poignant, lightly comic play from Tony winner Rupert Holmes, in its world premiere.

The Night Before (Nov. 25-Dec. 24). Could the Matthew McGee/Michael Raabe musical become a freeFall holiday tradition? This will be the second seasonal appearance for this warn ‘n’ toasty cup of Christmas cheer, set inside a Florida apartment as a winter blizzard rages outside.

Blues in the Night (Jan. 27-Feb. 6). This musical, set in a rundown Chicago hotel in 1948, comes to freeFall from California’s Ebony Repertory Theatre and director Wren T. Brown, the same team that brought the amazing Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill to freeFall earlier in 2022. Conceived and originally directed by Sheldon Epps, with original vocal arrangements and musical direction by Chapman Roberts.

Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery (March 24-April 23). Ken (Lend Me a Tenor) Ludwig turns Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s master detective and his Dr. Watson loose on the trail of “a murderously funny adventure.”

OZ (June 2-July 9). Music and lyrics by Michael Raabe, book by Eric Davis.

The previously-announced production of Neil Simon’s Rose and Walsh, on freeFall’s stage starting July 29 (THIS month) and running through Aug. 28 (NEXT month), is technically part of the 22-23 season (it all has to do with tickets, and subscription packages – see freeFall’s site for an explanation). Rose and Walsh stars Stephanie Dunnam and Patrick Ryan Sullivan in the title roles, based on Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett, and is directed by freeFall artistic director Eric Davis.

The theater has also announced that there will be more productions in its ongoing Tandem Series (one-nighters and short runs, including J. Elijah Cho in his solo play Mr. Yunioshi, Deejay Young in Home for the Holidays and drag legend Varla Jean Merman in Ready to Blow).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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