RENT The Musical

RENT The Musical

Civic Playhouse
Saturday, 21 October 2017

A cast of ​16 of Newcastle’s most well loved personalities will take part in an exciting 3 week season of Broadway’s TONY Award winning rock musical ​RENT by Jonathan Larson. ​This exceptional line up of singers will perform in, what is arguably Newcastle’s favourite musical, from Friday​ 20th October until Saturday 4th November 2017 at Newcastle’s most popular theatrical, the Civic Playhouse.

Loosely based on ​Puccini​’s ​opera​ ​La Bohème​, ​RENT ​tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists struggling to survive and create a life in ​New York City​’s ​East Village​ in the thriving days of ​Bohemian Alphabet City​, under the shadow of ​HIV/AIDS​.

This season will be the 5th staging of the musical here in Newcastle. This season will be produced by international award winning theatre company Hunter Drama.

Directed by ​Daniel Stoddart​, ​Freddie Gershon (CEO of Music Theatre International) Fellowship recipient (Junior Theatre Festival, Atlanta Georgia, USA) and founding Artistic Director of ​Hunter Drama​ Newcastle; starring members of the original Newcastle cast of RENT, ​Amy Vee​ ​(​Evita​, ​Jon English’s Rock Show, Grease, founding member of ​The Virtues​, and with two subsequent solo album releases), ​Daniel Wilson​ (Musical Director Starstruck​, ​The Last 5 Years​ and ​West Side Story​) and ​Marissa Saroca​ (Dis​ney’s High School Musical​, Season 1 of The Voice Philippines​ and two independant original studio albums ​Cheaper Than Therapy​ and ​Boys Write Love Songs Too​).

Marissa Saroca, Daniel Wilson and Amy Vee appeared as Maureen, Mark and Mimi respectively in the 2006, 2007 and 2011 productions of ​RENT​. With Saroca playing Maureen from 2007 on.

Ripping across our universe for the first time in 1994, ​RENT ​became Broadway’s signature smash-hit. Now, over 20 years later, it remains a potent mix of confronting themes, belting rock anthems and universal messages that still resonate today. ​RENT ​is ultimately a story about tolerance, inclusion, compassion, love and figuring out how we fit in.
Winner of 4 Tony Awards (including Best Musical), 6 Drama Desk Awards and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

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ABOUT: Rent The Musical

RENT ​is a ​rock musical​ with music, lyrics and book by ​Jonathan Larson​, loosely based on ​Giacomo Puccini​’s ​opera​ ​La Bohème​. It tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists struggling to survive and create a life in ​New York City​’s ​East Village​ in the thriving days of ​Bohemian​ ​Alphabet City​, under the shadow of ​HIV/AIDS​.

The musical was first seen in a ​workshop production​ at ​New York Theatre Workshop​ in 1993. This same Off-Broadway​ theatre was also the musical’s initial home following its official 1996 opening. The show’s creator, Jonathan Larson, died suddenly of an ​aortic dissection​, believed to have been caused by undiagnosed ​Marfan syndrome​, the night before the Off-Broadway premiere. The show won a ​Pulitzer Prize​, and the production was a hit. The musical moved to Broadway’s larger ​Nederlander Theatre​ on April 29, 1996.

On Broadway, ​RENT ​gained critical acclaim and won a ​Tony Award for Best Musical​ among other awards. The Broadway production closed on September 7, 2008 after a 12-year run of 5,123 performances. On February 14, 2016, the musical ​Wicked​ ​surpassed ​RENT’s ​number of performances with a 2pm matinee, pushing ​RENT ​from the tenth- to eleventh-longest-running Broadway show.​ ​ ​The production grossed over $280 million.

The success of the show led to several national tours and numerous foreign productions. In 2005, it was adapted into a ​motion picture​ featuring most of the original cast members.

ABOUT: Hunter Drama

Hunter Drama was established by Daniel Stoddart in 2007 as Hunter Region Drama School at a small hall in Glendale. 10 years (and a name change) later, Hunter Drama has cemented a reputation in Australia and internationally as an institution providing excellence and professionalism in the areas of young actor training and dramatic arts development. Hunter Drama offer a range of experiences, including term courses, short courses, masterclasses, ​productions​ and much more.

Hunter Drama is a multi-City of Newcastle Drama Award winning company with productions of ​Disney’s Little Mermaid JR.​, ​DreamWorks Shrek The Musical JR.​, (winning Outstanding Production and Best Ensemble respectively at the Junior Theatre Festival, USA), ​Roald Dahl’s The BFG, The Twits, Disney’s Alice in Wonderland, James and the Giant Peach, FAME JR., Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, George Orwell’s 1984 and ​William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet​.

Founding Artistic Director, Daniel Stoddart is perhaps most known as being one of the stars of the publicly acclaimed ​Ultra Swing Lounge​. Daniel is also an AusGrid Achievement in the Arts Award winner and a recipient of the highly coveted Freddie G Fellowship scholarship award.

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