• Monterey Peninsula College Theatre Department opens 2016-2017 Season with


    Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber – Lyrics by Tim Rice

    Directed by Gary Bolen

    July 14 – July 31, 2016 

    Tickets available from the MPC Theatre Box Office (831-646-4213) or online at www.mpctheatre.com

    About the MPC production of EVITA

    Large scale Musicals at the MPC Theatre Company have a 60 plus year tradition to live up to, which can be daunting. Shows that have been huge hits on Broadway can be particularly challenging. Audience expectations are always high, especially having seen past MPC productions such as Guys and DollsCabaretUrinetown, Les Miserables, Oklahoma! and last summer’s Sweet Charity. “Certain shows are ‘star driven,’ as we refer to them,” explains director Gary Bolen. “You cannot do a show like Les Miserables without a performer with a voice like Sean Boulware playingJean Valjean. You can’t consider doing Sweet Charity without a ‘triple-threat’ actress like Jill Miller, who could act, sing, and dance for well over two hours, night after night.” Now comes EVITA, which sets the bar even higher.


    EVITA is certainly dependent upon powerful actors and singers in the lead roles of Eva Peron and Che. It is ironic that the two characters who play intense rivals on the stage are enacted by two people who are loving partners in life. That irony is matched by the good fortune that said, actors Lara (Eva) and Rob (Che) Devlin are equally dynamic performers with voices ideally suited to the roles they play. “Che is almost a ‘rock star’ persona in the show and Rob has vocally fronted rock bands. He knows the vocal dynamics of that type of character very well,” noted director Bolen. “ Lara has a more lyrical, yet no less powerful, voice and the beauty of that comes through instantly. Needless to say, they have a rapport and chemistry that really sizzles on stage. Their moments together are wonderful to watch!”

    MPC audiences will remember Rob Devlin as Sky Masterson in Guys & Dolls (2007) and, more recently, as Inspector Javert in Les Miserables (2013).  Lara Devlin was also in Les Miserables as a lead ensemble member. The crucial third part of the “love/hate triangle” is the character of Juan Peron played by John Daniel (Enjolras in Les Miserables – MPC 2013). “The vocal demands for the role of Peron are overshadowed by the expectations of what is required of the actors playing Eva and Che, but they are really no less daunting. John Daniel brings such power and strength to the role, vocally and physically, that you really start to see how crucial Peron as a character is to the story” Bolen noted.


    There is a fourth ‘lead character’ in Evita, not always recognized as such. “This story is as much about the people of Argentina as it is about Eva Peron herself,” says Bolen. “She had a profound impact on Argentina and all of Latin America.” In that regard, the ensemble – all of whom portray multiple roles – stand in for the people of Argentina. “Audiences don’t realize what an ‘ensemble heavy’ show EVITA is. But all of these actors are going to be spending the entire show making quick changes and entrances to fulfill all of the parts necessary,” “Bolen said. “Our ensemble actors have been stellar in portraying the people of Argentina and Evita’s effect upon them, and helping to bring the lyrics of Tim Rice and the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber to life.”



    Gary Bolen, Chairman of the Theatre Arts Department at MPC, holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in Theatre from Cal State University Fullerton and an M.F.A. in Acting from UCLA. Most recently, Mr. Bolen appeared in the September 11th themed Studio Theatre production of The Guys (2013). Previous appearances have been as George in Chapter Two (2009) and as Max Bailystock in The Producers (2009).  Recent directorial efforts include 2013’s highly acclaimed MPC production of the hit musical Les Miserables (2013), as well as The Taming of The Shrew (2014), Musical of Musicals – The Musical! (2012)Once Upon a Mattress (2011), Rent (2009), Dracula (2014) and Oklahoma! (2014). This will be Gary Bolen’s last show as chairman of the MPC Theatre Arts Department and Artistic Director for the MPC Theatre Company, as he retires from that position after Evita.



    Design  team includes Gary Bolen (Director)Susan Cable  (Choreographer), Sean Boulware (Musical Director), Sherry Kefalas (Stage Manager), Doug Ridgeway (Technical Director & Scenic Design), Carey Crockett (Lead Scenic Painter) Eric Maximoff (Master Carpenter), David Rigmaiden (Sound Design), Gloria C. Mattos Hughes (Costume Design), Laura Cote (Props Design),Dan Beck (Technical Consultant).


    The Monterey Peninsula Community Theatre Company Charitable Trust is an independent 501(c)(3) created to support the MPC theatre program by funding expenses not covered by the State educational budget.


    EVITA previews Thursday July 14 and opens Friday July 15 at 7:30 PM. Performances run through Sunday July 31. Show dates are Thursdays at 7:30 PM (July 14, 21, 28) Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30 PM (July 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30) and Sundays at 2:00 PM (July 17, 24, 31). Tickets are $25 Adults, $22 Seniors; $15 Young Adults (16-21) & Military, and $10 Children 15 & under. Adults & Seniors can also purchase tickets 24-hours in advance for $20.00 eachGroup discounts are also available for parties of 15 or more.



    Saturday July 23 includes a pre-show ‘Evening in Argentina’ reception from 6:00 pm to 7:00 PM. This special event includes Argentine style Tapas, Monterey County wines as well as beer from English Ales, a raffle/silent auction and a pre-show tango demonstration. Show & Reception tickets are $75.00 each up until July 13 and $95.00 after that.

     Please Note: Campus Parking is required for Thursday evening performances and is $2.00

    Tickets are available from the MPC Box Office on the Monterey Peninsula College Campus at 980 Fremont Street. The Box Office (831-646-4213) is open Wednesdays, Thursdays & Fridays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM, and 2 hours prior to performances. Tickets are also available online at www.mpctheatre.com


     EVITA performance schedule:

    Thursday           July 14            7:30 PM – Preview
    Friday               July 15             7:30 PM – Opening
    Saturday           July 16             7:30 PM
    Sunday             July 17             2:00 PM – Matinee


    Thursday           July 21             7:30 PM
    Friday               July 22              7:30 PM
    Saturday           July 23             7:30 PM – 6 pm – 7 pm preshow reception
    Sunday             July 24             2:00 PM – Matinee


    Thursday           July 28            7:30 PM
    Friday               July 29             7:30 PM
    Saturday           July 30            7:30 PM
    Sunday             July 31            2:00 PM – Matinee & Final performance

    posted to Cedar Street Times on July 1, 2016

    Topics: Front PG News


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