The Impossible Musical

By DREW LICHTENBERG, Literary Manager/Resident Dramaturg at the Shakespeare Theatre Company, D.C. (Reprinted with permission.)

dale-wassermanOne of the first things to know about Man of La Mancha, perhaps the most popular adaptation of Don Quixote, is that it isn’t an adaptation at all. During a 1959 trip to Madrid, playwright Dale Wasserman read the book (or parts of it, it isn’t entirely clear) and came away convinced that this book, considered the greatest novel of all time, this “monument to human wit and folly could not, and should not, be dramatized.”

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Meet the Dreamers: Rufus Bonds Jr.

Last but certainly not least, find out a bit more about our fantastic Cervantes/Don Quixote: Rufus Bonds Jr.!

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Rufus Bonds Jr.

Man of La Mancha marks Rufus Bonds Jr.’s first foray at The 5th. He is an actor, director and writer who recently performed the role of Porgy in Porgy and Bess at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre in London. Rufus has been seen at Carnegie Hall in Duke Ellington’s Sacred Music as the baritone soloist. His Broadway credit’s include RentOnce On This Island and Parade (for which he received a Drama Desk Nomination for Best Supporting Actor). His National Tours include The Color Purple (Mister), Lion King (Mufasa) and Miss Saigon (John). As a director, Rufus’s projects include Tarzan, The Wiz, Into the Woods and The Wizard of Oz. He is also a Eugene O’Neill semi-finalist for his play The Sisters of Rosewall High.


Don’t miss Rufus and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Dreamers: Nova Payton

Meet the D.C. powerhouse who is following the star, no matter how hopeless, no matter how far: Nova Payton!

Nova Payton (Aldonza)

Nova Payton blew audiences away last season at The 5th in A Night With Janis Joplin, and we couldn’t be more excited to have her back with us for Man of La Mancha. DC Area credits include Jelly’s Last Jam, La Cage aux Folles, Diner, Elmer Gantry, Crossing, Defying Gravity: Making of a SuperNOVA, Dreamgirls, The Best Little Whorehouse…, Xanadu, Hairspray (Signature Theatre); A Year with Frog and Toad (Imagination Stage); Freedom’s Song (Ford’s Theatre); Godspell (Olney Theatre Center); Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Washington Savoyards); Happy Elf (Adventure Theatre); Kiss Me, Kate (Shakespeare Theatre). Regionally, Nova has been seen in Dreamgirls (Milwaukee Rep); Dreamgirls (Prince Music Theatre). Audiences may also have seen her in the National Tour of 3 Mo’ Divas (PBS Special), Smokey Joe’s Café. You can find out more about Nova at her website.


Don’t miss Nova and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Dreamers: Don Darryl Rivera

Meet the Seattle-native reaching for that unreachable star: Don Darryl Rivera as Sancho!

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Don Darryl Rivera (Sancho)

is beyond thrilled to be back in his hometown! Rivera currently stars as the dastardly Iago in Disney’s Aladdin on Broadway. Regional: The 5th Avenue, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Taproot Theatre Company, Intiman Theatre, The Guthrie Theater, Children’s Theatre Company, Shakespeare Theatre Company and Chicago Children’s Theatre. Rivera is a Gregory Award winner. Special thanks to Disney and The 5th Ave! Love to his wife Kate, daughter Eloise and pup Baxter. @dondarrylrivera


Don’t miss Don and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Women Leading Man of La Mancha

By ANYA RUDNICK, Director of Education and Outreach

“To Dream the Impossible Dream/To fight the unbeatable foe/To bear with unbearable sorrow/To run where the brave dare not go” sings Cervantes/Don Quixote, the hero of Dale Wasserman’s tour de force musical, MAN OF LA MANCHA. He continues, “This is my quest/To follow that star/No matter how hopeless/ No matter how far.” And so we are offered a glimpse into the mind of a man who dares to dream and who chooses to use the power of imagination to overcome struggle and adversity. This stunning production is brought to life by a trip of women- Director Allison Narver, Music Director Cynthia Kortman Westphal and Choreographer Maria Torres. I asked them each to reflect on the experiences of bringing this musical to The 5th Avenue stage.

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Meet the Dreamers: Lauren and Nick

Two more cast members are reaching for that unreachable star: Lauren Du Pree as Antonia and Nick DeSantis as Padre!

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Lauren Du Pree

Lauren is returning to The 5th after making her debut with us last season in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. You may also have seen her recently in My Heart Is The Drum at Village Theatre. Regional credits include Kennedy Center, Studio Theatre, Ford’s Theatre and Signature Theatre. She’s also been seen on television in Biz Kid$. Find out more about Lauren at her website.

molm_nick-desantis-webNick DeSantis

You saw Nick most recently at The 5th in last season’s co-production of Assassins with ACT. Other 5th Avenue credits include Sunday in the Park…ELFCinderella and The Music Man. Some of Nick’s other favorite roles include Les Misérables (Thenardier), No Way to Treat a Lady (Kit Gill), Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Lumière) and I Am My Own Wife.


Don’t miss Lauren, Nick and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Dreamers: Eric and Marlette

Two more cast members are running where the brave dare not go: Eric Ankrim as Duke/Carrasco and Marlette Buchanan as Maria/Housekeeper!

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Eric Ankrim

Eric will be very familiar to our audiences. You may have seen him last year at The 5th in both our revisal production of Lerner & Loewe’s Paint Your Wagon and as clever ladder-climber J. Pierrepont Finch in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (for which he received a Gregory Award nomination). Other 5th Avenue credits include Jacques Brel… (also Gregory Award-nominated), CarouselFirst Date (another Gregory Award nomination!), Oklahoma, RENTInto the WoodsThe Rocky Horror Show and Miss Saigon. After originating the role of Aaron in First Date in Seattle, Eric also went with the show to Broadway!

molm_marlette-buchanan-webMarlette Buchanan

You may recognize Marlette from her previous role treading the boards at The 5th in Carousel. She’s been seen in many other regional productions, including Violet (ArtsWest), Passing Strange (ACT/Sidecountry), Once On This Island (Village), Ain’t Misbehavin’RagtimePorgy and Bess (Seattle Opera), Tin Pan Lady and Show Boat (Village). You may also have seen her in numerous television and film roles, including The DetailsFreedom Riders and Seattle’s Stars. Marlette is a graduate of Boston University and Fisk University.


Don’t miss Eric, Marlette and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Dreamers: Allen and Jose

Two more cast members are fighting the unbeatable foe with us: Allen Fitzpatrick as The Governor/Innkeeper and Jose J. Gonzales as The Barber!

molm_allen-fitzpatrick-webAllen Fitzpatrick

Allen is no stranger to our stage. You saw him most recently in our revisal production of Lerner and Loewe’s Paint Your Wagon last season, and as the big boss himself, J.B. Biggley in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying last season. Allen has over 40 appearances on Seattle stages to his name, 22 of those at The 5th (including Sweeney in Sweeney Todd). Allen has also been in 10 Broadway shows, including Les Misérables42nd StreetDriving Miss DaisyThe Scarlet PimpernelPassionMemphisSweet Smell of Success and Damn Yankees. He is the Artistic Director of the Icicle Creek New Play Festival. You can find out more about him on his website.

molm_jose-j-gonzales-webJose J. Gonzales

Jose is making his 5th Avenue debut with Man of La Mancha. He is a professional jazz pianist and singer, and has been involved in the theater scene in Seattle since 1989. His credits include In the HeightsThe Gypsy KingIn the Penal ColonyA Streetcar Named Desire and Nine.

 


Don’t miss Allen, Jose and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

 

Meet the Dreamers: Brandon and David

Two more cast members are dreaming “The Impossible Dream” with us: David Quicksall as the Captain of the Inquisition and Brandon O’Neill as Pedro! Find out more about them below.

molm_david-quicksall-webDavid Quicksall

We’re pleased to have David back on our stage! You may have seen him previously in Titanic in ConcertCompanyThe Sound of Music and 1776. He has also appeared at Seattle Repertory, Intiman, ACT, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Book-It, Seattle Shakespeare Company and the Seagull Project.

molm_brandon-oneill-webBrandon O’Neill

Brandon is also returning to The 5th! Most recently, you saw him in Assassins, last season’s co-production with ACT. Other 5th Avenue credits include: CarouselPirates of Penzance and Guys and Dolls. He was in the Original Broadway Cast of Disney’s Aladdin; he joined the Broadway show after being part of the cast when it started here at The 5th. Other regional credits include: A View From the Bridge at Seattle Rep; Cat on a Hot Tin RoofRamayanaFirst DateMiss SaigonJoseph… and Cabaret. His voice can be heard nightly on Broadway, in London, and Australia as the Voice of the Cave of Wonders. Find out more about him at his website.


Don’t miss David, Brandon and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, inspirational musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.

Meet the Dreamers: Annie, Richard and Davione

Check out some more of our amazing cast members! Today we’re meeting Annie Morro, Richard Peacock and Davione Gordon.

molm_annie-morro-webAnnie Morro

Annie is making her 5th Avenue debut with Man of La Mancha. Regional credits include Village Theatre’s My Fair Lady and UW Musical Theatre’s Sweet Charity.

 

 

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Richard is returning to his 5th Avenue family after spending five months dancing in Mumbai! Previous Seattle credits include A Chorus LineHow to Succeed… and A Christmas Story at The 5th, and Xanadu at Village Theatre.

molm_davione-gordon-webDavione Gordon

This is Davione’s second production with The 5th, having performed last in Carousel during our 2014/15 season. He is a native of Fort Washington, Maryland, and moved to Seattle in 2012, where he joined Spectrum Dance Theater and danced with the company for four seasons.

 


Don’t miss Annie, Richard, Davione and the rest of our dreamers in this epic, classic musical. Man of La Mancha runs October 7-30, 2016. Click here to find a full cast listing, more about the show and to purchase tickets.