‘Leading Ladies’ opens Moonlight’s winter season

By Emily Sorensen

Just because the weather outside is chilly doesn’t mean that Moonlight Stage Productions is shuttering for the season.

The 2013 winter season has kicked off at the AVO Playhouse, 303 Main St. in Vista, with the farce “Leading Ladies.”. The doo-wop musical “Life Could Be a Dream,” opens in February, and “Born Yesterday,” opens in  March.

Paul Morgavo, left, and Eric Hellmers star in “Leading Ladies,” at Moonlight’s AVO Playhouse.

“Leading Ladies” is a new comedy, written by Ken Ludwig, whose previous comedies “Moon Over Buffalo” and “Lend Me a Tenor” have met great success with audiences. Directed by Christopher Williams, who had his directorial debut with Moonlight’s production of “Beau Jest” last year, “Leading Ladies tells the story of two conniving, down-on-their-luck English actors, Leo and Jack, played by Paul Morgavo and Eric Hellmers.

Reduced to performing their “Scenes from Shakespeare” show in Pennsylvania’s “Moose Lodge” circuit in Amish country, the men hear about an elderly woman who is about to die and leave her fortune to her long-lost English nephews. Scheming to steal the fortune, Leo and Jack decide to pass themselves off as the nephews, only to encounter a bit of speed bump when they discover the missing relatives are actually nieces. Romantic entanglements, disguises and shenanigans ensue.

“Leading Ladies” also stars Kristin Woodburn and Noelle Marion as love interests Meg and Audrey, Taylor Bassett as Reverend Duncan Wooley, Dagmar Krause Fields as Florence, Thomas Vegh as Doc Myers, and Spencer Rodman as Butch and Frank. The show runs through Sunday, Feb. 3.

Opening Valentine’s Day and running through Sunday, March 10 is the doo-wop musical “Life Could Be a Dream,” written by Roger Bean. Return to Springfield High (home of “The Marvelous Wonderettes”) and meet the “Crooning Crabcakes,” the boy group banned from the senior prom. The singing foursome is headed for fame and fortune by trying to win the local radio contest on Big Whopper Radio. Songs performed in the show include “Runaround Sue,” “Tears on My Pillow,” “Earth Angel” and “The Glory of Love.” “Life Could Be a Dream” won the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards as Best Production of the year in 2011.

Finishing out Moonlight Stage Production’s winter season is Garson Kanin’s American classic “Born Yesterday,” opening Thursday, March 21 and running through Sunday, April 7. Originally debuting on Broadway in 1946, where it ran for 1,600 performances, the play tells the story of a wealthy junk dealer, Harry Brock, and his supposedly “dumb blonde” girlfriend, Billie Dawn. Taking place in Washington D.C., in the 1940s, Brock’s insider deals are threatened by his girlfriend’s inability to fit in with Washington society, so he hires a tutor for her, a smart reporter whose passion is museums, literature and uncovering the Capitol’s dirty little secrets.

The 23rd Winter Season of Moonlight Stage Productions is produced in partnership with the Moonlight Cultural Foundation (moonlightfoundation.com) and is the cultural arts program of the City of Vista.

Season tickets for all three shows are available for $72, and individual show tickets range from $22 – $30. Call VisTix at 760-724-2110 or visit moonlightstage.com.

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Posted by Steve Dreyer on Jan 18 2013. Filed under Entertainment, Theatre. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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