Studio Tenn Makes TPAC, Schermerhorn Stops in 2013-14 Season

Studio Tenn LogoFRANKLIN, Tenn. – Studio Tenn has already set the bar high in its quest to present Broadway-quality theater productions. They’ll continue to challenge themselves toward the goal of rewarding their ever-growing audiences with “A Season of Contemporary Classics” for 2013-14 that includes stops at Tennessee Performing Arts Center and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center.

Artistic Director Matt Logan and Managing Director Jake Speck announced next’s season’s schedule from the stage of the Franklin Theatre prior to Thursday’s opening night performance of Big River. Three of their five shows next season will be at that historic venue where Studio Tenn is the resident theater company.

“We feel we really needed to up our game,” Logan told ArtsNash today. “We were drawn to what we felt were great pieces that were contemporary in nature and classic in terms of their storytelling qualities.” While some of the source material for next year’s shows isn’t modern (A Christmas Carol appeared as a novella in 1843, for example), Logan noted that the theatrical versions Studio Tenn will produce utilize recent scripts, music and/or concepts to connect with today’s audiences.

The opener is Randal Myler and Mark Harelik’s look at the music and legend of a country great in Hank Williams: Lost Highway Aug. 29-Sept. 15 at Franklin Theatre. Then it’s Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods Oct. 17-Nov. 3 also at Franklin Theatre.

Studio Tenn plans to present A Christmas Carol again, but as was the case in previous years expect some changes to the Charles Dickens classic from prior productions. One change is already known – the show will run Dec. 13-22 at TPAC’s Polk Theater.

Peter Morgan’s Frost/Nixon takes the Franklin Theatre stage Feb. 20-March 9. The 2006 play was adapted into a successful 2008 film by Ron Howard that starred Michael Sheen and Frank Langella; both actors appeared in the original Donmar Warehouse theater production in London.

The season concludes in spectacular fashion with two nights of Les Misérables at Schermerhorn Symphony Center May 3-4. There will be no revolving barricades, but Studio Tenn promises plenty of musicians, singers and actors will appear.

Details on auditions and season ticket packages will be available soon at StudioTenn.com and www.facebook.com/studiotenntheatrecompany.

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About Evans Donnell

Evans Donnell is the chief theater, film and opera critic as well as co-founder of ArtsNash. He wrote reviews and features about theater, opera and classical music for The Tennessean from 2002 to 2011. He was the theater, film and opera critic for ArtNowNashville.com from 2011 to 2012. Donnell has also contributed to The Sondheim Review, Back Stage, The City Paper (Nashville), the Nashville Banner, The (Bowling Green, Ky.) Daily News and several other publications since beginning his professional journalism career in 1985 with The Lebanon (Tenn.) Democrat. He was selected as a fellow for the 2004 National Critics Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, and for National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) arts journalism institutes for theater and musical theater at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism in 2006 and classical music and opera at the Columbia University School of Journalism in 2009. He has also been an actor (member of Actors Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA), founding and running AthensSouth Theatre from 1996 to 2001 and appearing in Milos Forman’s “The People vs Larry Flynt” among other credits. Donnell is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association (www.americantheatrecritics.org).