Q & A: An Interview with Secret Garden Dialect Coach Lisa Nathans

We chatted with Lisa Nathans, the voice/text and dialect coach for The Secret Garden, to find out more about what a dialect coach does and what are some challenging aspects of the dialects in the show. Read more below!

Continue reading “Q & A: An Interview with Secret Garden Dialect Coach Lisa Nathans”

Marsha Norman: Cultivator of a Theatrical Garden

By HANNAH HESSEL RATNER, Audience Enrichment Manager at D.C.’s Shakespeare Theatre Company

Marsha Norman is on a mission. The award-winning playwright’s career has covered Broadway, Hollywood and numerous theatres worldwide. Her accolades include a Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award® and, in 2016, the Dramatists Guild Career Achievement Award. She has co-directed the playwriting program at Julliard for nearly a quarter of a century. And at this point in her career she is determined to tell the story of women.

Continue reading “Marsha Norman: Cultivator of a Theatrical Garden”

Meet the Director: Kristin Hanggi – Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion

Kristin Hanggi Headshot

Kristin Hanggi will be directing our world premiere of Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion. Kristin directed and developed the international smash-hit Rock of Ages and is also a film director! Find out more about Kristin below.

Is this your first time working with The 5th?
Yes, it’s my first time! And I’m so excited! Many of my friends and colleagues have worked at The 5th and have sung its praises, so I’m looking forward to get a chance to work on a new musical here. The 5th is so encouraging to the creative process and one of the best places to develop new works. Continue reading “Meet the Director: Kristin Hanggi – Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion

“Steppin’ Out of the Shadows:” An Interview with Murder for Two’s Kellen Blair

By KWAPI VENGESAYI, 5th Avenue Community Engagement Specialist

Murder for Two is a hilarious musical comedy to die for. It received rave reviews during a record-breaking run at Chicago Shakespeare Theater prior to a critically-acclaimed run Off-Broadway at Second Stage Uptown. Called “Ingenious” by The New York Times, it is the perfect blend of murder, music and mayhem! In an interview with lyricist and co-writer Kellen Blair we get a little bit more insight into the show’s creation and success.

Joe Kinosian (left) and Kellen Blair (right)

Do you have any prior connections to The 5th and/or ACT?
I grew up in Seattle and most of my family still lives here (all proud subscribers at 5th Avenue, thank you very much). And interestingly enough, my very first theater experience was at ACT. I was two years old and my parents took me to see A Christmas Carol. It was a terrible idea because the sight of Jacob Marley had me screaming my head off and made everybody hate us, I’m sure. But I’ve been back every year since (and the screaming has definitely mellowed since then). So you can imagine, having my show here, the first theater I set foot in, is extremely meaningful to me. It’s also meaningful to my mom, who has been waiting for this day since our first reading seven years ago. Actually, when I found out Murder for Two was going to New York, I told my mom, and her response was, “Does that mean it’ll be coming to Seattle anytime soon?”

Continue reading ““Steppin’ Out of the Shadows:” An Interview with Murder for Two’s Kellen Blair”

Volunteer Spotlight: Susan Jackson

This is the first in an ongoing series, shining a spotlight on our many amazing volunteers. As a non-profit arts organization, we truly would not be able to do all that we do without our fabulous volunteers. Continue reading “Volunteer Spotlight: Susan Jackson”

Q & A with The Pajama Game’s Trina Mills

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In this Q & A with the multi-talented Trina Mills, she tells us about what it takes to balance the three roles she fills in The Pajama Game: ensemble member, Associate Choreographer, and dance captain. Continue reading “Q & A with The Pajama Game’s Trina Mills”

iHeartMedia Interview with Pajama Game’s Greg McCormick Allen

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Greg McCormick Allen, who is portraying Hines in our production of The Pajama Game, recently did an interview about the show and the process with iHeartMedia. Take a listen below!


Originally broadcast on Recovery Coast to Coast via iHeartMedia. Thanks to Neil Scott for sharing.

Find out more about The Pajama Game and buy tickets here.

Behind the Curtain: Q & A With Pajama Game Costume Designer Rose Pederson

Rose Pederson is back at The 5th for The Pajama Game. She made her debut last season with another workplace musical comedy: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Rose’s designs have been seen in other local theatres, including 47 shows at Seattle Repertory, 28 shows at ACT Theatre, and productions at Intiman Theatre, New Century Theatre and Seattle Children’s Theatre. She has also worked extensively in regional theaters across the nation, including the Broadway production of Largely New York, the Kennedy Center, Arizona Theatre Company, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Portland Center Stage, Artists Repertory Theatre, Playmakers Repertory Company and The Merc Playhouse.

She took some time to answer a few questions about the costumes for The Pajama Game.


Tell us a bit about your vision for the costumes in The Pajama Game.

I originally talked with Bill Berry about the show and how we saw the “look.” We decided it would be real clothes, based on research of the period. I found many pictures of women working in factories in the Midwest in 1954. I also was able to use the Public Library picture file which has a collection of magazine articles, calendars, news articles, etc. from the period. Sometimes there are treasures there that can’t be found on the internet. My favorite finds were from the category of picnics. Continue reading “Behind the Curtain: Q & A With Pajama Game Costume Designer Rose Pederson”

Spotlight on Beatsville

Beatsville, written by Wendy Wilf and Glenn Slater, appeared in the 2008 NAMT Festival. The show is now preparing for its world premiere in a co-production with NAMT member The 5th Avenue Theatre and Asolo Rep Theatre. This month, we caught up with the writers to hear about the work they’ve done on the piece since the Festival leading up to this premiere.  Originally printed in the NAMT New Works News.

What was the response to Beatsville like after the 2008 Festival?
We had a great Festival—our cast was spectacular, and made the show look fantastic—and we received a hugely gratifying outpouring of interest from various theatres and organizations who wanted to help us take the next step forward. We sort of fumbled the ball a little—we felt that we still had some writing to do, and weren’t sure what that next step should be, and then we got swept up in other projects. Luckily for us, when we were finally ready to move forward, there was still a lot of goodwill in the community from people who remembered it from the Festival, and they proved instrumental in helping us get the show back on track. Continue reading “Spotlight on Beatsville”

Spotlight on Hattie Andres: 2016/17 Directing and Artistic Leadership Fellow

When you ask Hattie Andres to describe the best part of being the first recipient of The 5th’s Directing and Artistic Leadership Fellowship, she responds with a cliché that is telling of a young disciple of musical theater:

“The best part is being ‘in the room where it happens.’ I grew up seeing so many productions on this stage and now all of a sudden I’m seeing it all come together—from the ground up.”

However, it hasn’t taken long for Andres to confirm that her fellowship entails a bit more than just being in the room. The fellowship, currently a pilot program at The 5th, seeks to provide an early-career creative artist with a unique growth opportunity while specifically addressing the inequities in access and representation. Andres’s first role this season in line with that fellowship was to serve as assistant director for Man of La Mancha. Continue reading “Spotlight on Hattie Andres: 2016/17 Directing and Artistic Leadership Fellow”