Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tucson: ATC Spreads Holiday Cheer with IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE



From: Arizona Theatre Company []
Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2008 6:24 PM
Subject: Press Release: ATC Spreads Holiday Cheer with IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE



$10 youth tickets available

Arizona Theatre Company visits Bedford Falls and brings one of America’s greatest Christmas stories to the stage this December in It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play. This heartfelt, spirited family-friendly addition to the holiday season tells the story of the beloved Frank Capra film as it might have been performed in the 1940s on a live radio broadcast. This new family holiday show will make its ATC debut for seven performances only from December 4 – 7, 2008 at the Herberger Theater Center in downtown Phoenix.  

“Frank Capra’s classic film It’s a Wonderful Life has become a beloved holiday tradition that warms the season every year in the same way as A Christmas Carol, The Nutcracker and The Messiah. The messages of compassion, caring and embracing life in this classic story have touched generations of families,” said Artistic Director David Ira Goldstein. “Joe Landry’s new version that covers all of the events of the movie as they might have been rendered in a live radio broadcast in the 1940’s has quickly become a family holiday tradition in cities across the country. We are so delighted to begin that tradition here in the Southwest.” 

Everyone’s favorite holiday story comes to life onstage in It’s a Wonderful Life. Join the crowd in a 1940’s radio studio where the WFBR “Playhouse of the Air” is presenting a live broadcast of It’s a Wonderful Life.  Listen in and remember the classic story of George Bailey and Clarence, his guardian angel (second class).  When circumstances threaten George’s ability to provide for his family, he questions the value of his own life.  It’s Clarence to the rescue, however, as he gives George the chance to see how the world would have turned out if he had never been born. Of course, George’s eyes are opened to a world of love that surrounds him and Clarence earns his own unique reward.  Bring the whole family to this joyous new telling of one of the greatest holiday stories ever told and see it unfold before your eyes (and ears)! 

It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play is written by Joe Landry. Mr. Landry has had his plays produced across the country, which also include Reefer Madness, Eve & Co., Beautiful, Hollywood Babylon and Numb. His other adaptations include Death in Venice and Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play. Mr. Landry attended Playwright's Horizons/NYU and is the founder of Second Guess Theatre Company. 

It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play is directed by ATC Associate Artistic Director Samantha K. Wyer, whose previous ATC credits include The Lady with All the Answers, To Kill a Mockingbird, I Am My Own Wife, Tuesdays With Morrie, Permanent Collection, A Streetcar Named Desire, A Moon for the Misbegotten, Proof, Wit and Secret Things by Elaine Romero. Her other Arizona directing credits include Arizona Repertory Theatre, Childsplay and Chamber Music Plus. 

The cast of It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play includes the return of Arizona favorites Bob Sorenson (Harry “Jazzbo” Heywood), who mostly recently appeared at ATC in The Pajama Game. Other ATC credits include I Am My Own Wife, Permanent Collection, Over the Moon, Fully Committed, Ghosts, Art, The Mystery of Irma Vep, How I Learned to Drive, Scapin, Swinging on a Star, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Noises Off; Roberto Guajardo (Freddie Filmore), who most recently appeared at ATC in To Kill a Mockingbird. Other ATC productions include Molly’s Delicious, Twelfth Night, Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure, Macbeth, Over the Moon, Much Ado About Nothing, Wit, As You Like It and Picasso at the Lapin Agile; and Maren MacLean (Lana Sherwood), who was last seen in Arizona Theatre Company’s Macbeth; Kyle Sorrell (Jake Laurents), who last appeared at ATC in Twelfth Night. His other Valley credits include work at Actors Theatre, Phoenix Theatre, and Arizona Jewish Theatre Company.  

The cast also includes Kerry McCue (Sally Applewhite), who has worked with Actors Theatre, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Phoenix Theatre’s New Works Festival, Southwest Shakespeare Company, Sedona Shakespeare, Stray Cat Theatre and Nearly Naked Theatre; and Paul Gibson (Foley Artist/Sound Effects), an active percussionist in the greater Tucson area performing in a multitude of genres including orchestral, jazz, Latin and theatre, as well as various educational activities.  

The creative team includes Gary Wissman (Scenic Designer), whose designs have been seen at Pasadena Playhouse, Manitoba Theatre Center, Rubicon Theatre Company and Ensemble Theatre Company of Santa Barbara; Maggie McFarland (Costume Designer), who has worked as a Costume Designer and Wardrobe Stylist on both television and in film, including projects for CBS and BBC; Jennifer Setlow (Lighting Designer), who most recently designed the lighting for ATC’s The Lady with All the Answers and has designed lighting for Berkeley Repertory Theatre, The Old Globe, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Repertory Theatre, East West Players, Sledgehammer Theatre, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, and others; Brian Jerome Peterson (Sound Designer), who celebrates his 23rd season and 57th sound design for ATC, where he has most recently designed The Lady with All the Answers and Enchanted April; and Erica McKibben (Stage Manager).  

Tickets to I'ts a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play are $25 or $35 for adults. $10 youth tickets are also available.  Arizona Theatre Company performs at the Herberger Theater Center, located at 222 E. Monroe Street in downtown Phoenix. For tickets and information, call (602) 256-6995 or visit  




For more information about Arizona Theatre Company's 2008-2009 season, visit


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