May arrives, and it’s “Presto Change-O” as Barrington Stage begins a new season

Presto Change-O stars (clockwise from bottom) Lenny Wolpe, Barbara Walsh, Michael Rupert,  Bob Walton, Jenni Barber and Jarrod Spector.

Presto Change-O stars (clockwise from bottom) Lenny Wolpe, Barbara Walsh, Michael Rupert, Bob Walton, Jenni Barber and Jarrod Spector.

For 2016, things are going to be different at Barrington Stage Company. They are ratcheting up their productions.

Usually their season opens with a simple show with one or two characters, followed by bigger and bigger productions as the Summer tourist season takes over the Berkshires.

But Julianne Boyd (artistic director) and Tristan Wilson (managing director) have decided to begin instead with the Musical Theatre Lab world premiere new musical, Presto Change-O, from May 18 through June 11. (Press Opening is May 25 at 7:30pm.) The company’s press release describes this intriguing new musical as one that “tells the story of three generations of magicians who find themselves under one roof for the first time in years. When the grandfather causes real magic to happen, they must confront their past mistakes and re-examine what it means to be a family.”

Founded in 2006, the BSC Musical Theatre Lab is overseen by Artistic Director Julianne Boyd and Artistic Producer William Finn.

Presto Change-O features a book and lyrics by Eric Price, music by Joel Waggoner, choreography by Chris Bailey, and direction by Marc Bruni of Broadway’s Beautiful The Carole King Musical. Vadim Feichtner is music director.

Presto Change-O has a star studded cast which includes Tony Award winner Michael Rupert (Broadway’s Falsettos, On The Town) as “Lance,” Tony Award nominee Jarrod Spector (Broadway’s Beautiful The Carole King Musical) as “Michael,” Tony Award nominee Barbara Walsh (Broadway’s Company) as “Mary,” Jenni Barber (Broadway’s Wicked) as “Tina,” Bob Walton (Broadway’s 42nd Street) as “Arthur,”and Lenny Wolpe (Broadway’s The Drowsy Chaperone, Wicked) as “Sheldon.”

The design team includes sets by Tony Award winner Derek McLane, lights by Tony Award winner Ken Billington, costumes by Alejo Vietti. Illusions by Joseph Wartnerchaney. Production stage manager is Michael Andrew Rodgers.

May also sees the company’s popular “Conversations With…” Series begin on Sunday, May 22 at 12:30pm at the St. Germain Stage with The Magic of Creating a Musical- From Commission to World Premiere. Here audiences can connect with Lyricist and Bookwriter Eric Price and Composer Joel Waggoner as they discuss the process of combining story, song, magic, and choreography to tell one family’s story. While all “Conversations With…” events are free, reservations are highly recommended. All seating is general admission. Call the Box Office at 413-236-8888.

Sponsored in part by Carole and Dan Burack & Carrie and David Schulman. Presto Change-O was commissioned through the generosity of Carole and Dan Burack. The 2016 St. Germain Season is sponsored by The Claudia and Steven Perles Family Foundation.

Performances of Presto Change-O begin May 18, 2016, with an opening night set for May 25, and closing on June 11, 2016. Performances are Tuesday through Saturday at 7:30pm, with matinees Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 3:00pm. Both single tickets and 2016 season passes are now on-sale and available at www.barringtonstageco.org or by calling 413-236-8888 or visiting the MainStage box office (30 Union Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201). Tickets range from $20 to $69.

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