Tickets for new theater season on sale Wednesday

LONG BEACH - Single tickets go on sale Wednesday for the 2010-11 season of Musical Theatre West at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center in Long Beach.The new season includes sentimental favorites and new additions to the stage, including "Annie," "Cats," "Summer of Love" and "The Wedding Singer." The season will open Oct. 29 with "Annie," based on the Little Orphan Annie comic strip. "Annie" is the story of a spunky Depression-era orphan determined to find the parents who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of a New York City orphanage run by the cruel, embittered Miss Hannigan. In adventure after fun-filled adventure, Annie foils Miss Hannigan's evil machinations, befriends President Franklin Roosevelt and finds a new family in the home of billionaire Oliver Warbucks (where we met a wonderful mutt named Sandy). "Annie" was the winner of nine Tony Awards in 1977, including Best Musical. "Annie" also features a familiar score which has long since become a part of our nation's cultural heritage. For its second production, Musical Theatre West will present "Cats" (Feb. 11-27, 2011), based on T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats." The story is set at the annual reunion of the Jellicle cats at the Jellicle Ball. The eldest of this special breed, Old Deuteronomy, seeks to select which of the many cats in the neighborhood will be reborn to begin another life. Potential candidates named Jennyanydots, Rum Tum Tugger and Bustopher Jones plead their case but ultimately it is Grizabella's plea for a new life that wins the old cat over. "Cats" features 20 of Andrew Lloyd Webber's melodies, including the hit song "Memory." For its third production, Musical Theatre West will present a world premiere of a new musical from Roger Bean - the creator of "The Marvelous Wonderettes" and "The Andrew Brothers" - "Summer of Love," opening April 1. In 1967, the countercultural revolution brought a melting pot of music, creative expression and politics to the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco. A few years later, a young flower child named Daisy arrived on the scene, yearning to experience her own summer of love amid the hippies and dropouts populating the Golden Gate Park. This new show features music from some of the most impressionable artists of the love generation: the Mamas and the Papas, Donovan, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane and more. Musical Theatre West will close the season by taking audiences back to 1985 to relive the days of big hair with the Southern California regional premiere of musical based on the hip Adam Sandler film, "The Wedding Singer" (July 8-24). Wannabe rock star Robbie Hart is everyone's favorite wedding singer and life of the party until he gets jilted at the altar. Embittered, he vows to make every wedding as disastrous as his own. But then he meets Julia, a waitress who wins his heart - but she's already engaged. Can he win her heart before she says "I do" or will it be too late? Musical Theatre West performances are in the Carpenter Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling (562) 856-1999, ext. 4. Single ticket prices start at $35.

********** Published: September 9, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 21