By Graydon Royce6/26/15
Five shows are on the slate next season, including two world premieres and a revival of “Gypsy.”
Theater Latté Da is expanding its presence next season, with five shows that include two world premieres. The company, which this week announced its 18th season, is also establishing itself at the Ritz Theater in northeast Minneapolis for most shows next year.
Artistic director Peter Rothstein will stage one of his favorites, “Sweeney Todd,” Sept. 23-Oct. 25, at the Ritz. Sally Wingert will play Mrs. Lovett, the meat-pie proprietor who does a brisk business in her gruesome treats. Tyler Michaels, who just finished “Peter Pan” for Rothstein at Children’s Theatre Company, is also in the cast. No word on who will play the title role. Denise Prosek, Latté Da’s resident music director, will work this show.
Rothstein will retool “All Is Calm” for the holiday season. For many years, the men’s chorus Cantus has provided the vocal power for this telling of the 1914 Christmas Truce during World War I. Cantus has announced it won’t be along this year so Rothstein will use 12 singer/actors. Erick Lichte, formerly Cantus’ artistic director, will serve as music director of the production, Dec. 16-20 at the Pantages Theatre.
Jeremy Cohen will direct the world premiere of “Lullaby,” by Michael Elyanow and Jonatha Brooke, Jan. 13-Feb. 7 at the Ritz. This play with music is the first in Latté Da’s new-work initiative, which aims at developing 20 musicals over the next five years. “Lullaby” came out of the “Next” series of staged readings of new work. Adelin Phelps plays the central character of Cassie, a widowed mother who hires another woman to sing lullabies for her son.
Real-life mother and daughter Michelle Barber and Cat Brindisi will play the leads in “Gypsy” at the Pantages Theatre, Feb. 13-March 13. Latté Da’s fourth annual collaboration with Hennepin Theatre Trust, it will be directed by Rothstein, with Prosek and choreographer Michael Matthew Ferrell pitching in. Tod Petersen will play Herbie.
The season concludes with its second premiere, “C.,” adapted from “Cyrano de Bergerac” by Bradley Greenwald with music by Robert Elhai. This show also came out of the “Next” program. Featuring Greenwald, David Darrow and Kendall Ann Thompson, it runs March 30-April 24 at the Ritz.
The company will also produce “Next,” its series of staged readings of new musicals, May 4-22.
More information at 612-339-3003 or latteda.org.