Porchlight Music Theatre celebrates Black History Month, with the third production in their 2012 - 2013 season, Lanie Robertson's Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill, February 2 - March 10, 2013, starring Alexis Rogers as Billie Holiday and directed by Porchlight Artistic Associate Rob Lindley with music direction by Jaret Landon, at Stage 773, 1225 West Belmont Ave.
Previews are Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 at 8 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013 at 2 and 6 p.m. and Monday, Feb. 4, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. Opening/Press Night is Tuesday, Feb. 5 at 7:30 p.m. The regular run schedule is Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 4 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
Tickets are $30 for previews and $39 for all other performances. Groups of ten or more may receive discounts on tickets purchased via the Groups Sales office at 773.777.9884. Single tickets for Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill are on sale now and may be purchased at stage773.com or by phone at 773.327.5252.
It's 1959 in a small bar in Philadelphia. Around midnight, the lights go down and the show of a lifetime begins. Witness one of last performances of the world's greatest chanteuse, Miss Billie Holiday (Alexis Rogers), intimately given four months before the passing of this tragic musical superstar. With her stellar jazz trio, she revisits her life, loves and losses in more than a dozen quintessential, thrilling and gut-wrenching numbers. It's a salty, sensual, often humorous, and always riveting portrait of the legendary lady and her legacy of music.
The production team for Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill includes Alexia Rutherford, costume design; Nick Belley, lighting design; Jeffrey D. Kmiec, set design; Victoria "Toy" DeIorio, sound design; Adrian Juarez, properties design; Jenn Kincaid, stage manager; Deborah Blumenthal, dramaturgy intern and Patrick Fries, production manager.
Porchlight's production of Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill, moves for a limited engagement to the Beverly Arts Center, 2407 W 111th Street, Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 24 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $26 and are available at beverlyartcenter.org or 773.445.3838.
ABOUT Alexis Rogers, performer, "Billie Holiday": Alexis J. Rogers was last seen at Porchlight Music Theatre as "Sarah" in Ragtime. She was most recently seen in Dreamgirls (Marriott Theatre) and Crowns (The Goodman Theatre,) where she previously appeared in Ain't Misbehavin'. Other Chicago credits include "Bess" in Porgy and Bess, Spunk and The Piano Lesson (Court Theatre); Hairspray (Drury Lane Oakbrook); The Old Settler (Writers' Theatre); The Colored Museum, The Nativity and Seven Guitars (Jeff awards for Best Ensemble and Best Production - Congo Square Theatre Company).
ABOUT Rob Lindley, director: Rob Lindley is a Porchlight Music Theatre Artistic Associate where he has directed A Wonderful Life and acted in Children of Eden, A New Brain, Sweeney Todd and Closer Than Ever and has played host and director of Porchlight's annual Chicago Sings... concert. Most recently, Lindley has been seen in The Dead and Angels in America (Court Theatre); as well as Candide (Goodman Theatre); Bach at Leipzig (Writers' Theatre); Urinetown (Mercury Theatre); Wings (Apple Tree Theatre); and The Most Happy Fella - starring George Hearn (Ravinia Festival). Lindley was also nominated for a Jeff Award for his performance of "Mr. Snow" in Carousel at Court Theatre and won the Jeff Award for Best Actor in a Revue for his work in Oh Coward! at Writer's Theatre. He performs cabaret often with his vocal trio Foiled Again (After Dark Award winners in 2003) and recorded Foiled Again: Live with Them (available on iTunes and CDbaby.com). Lindley is a proud member of Actors' Equity and married to musical director and fellow Porchlight Artistic Associate Doug Peck.
ABOUT JARET LANDON, music director: Jaret Landon is a composer, arranger, vocalist, pianist and educator. He has Bachelor and Master degrees in both Music Performance and Music Education. Landon has composed and arranged scores for various independent films, musicals and recorded albums. He is employed with the Lyric Opera of Chicago and serves as the music director at Pullman Christian Reformed Church. Landon is resident music director for Congo Square Theatre's production of The Nativity, by McKinley Johnson for which he composed and arranged the music. In 2009, Landon received the BTAA Duke Ellington Award for "Best Musical Direction" for Sanctified by Javon Johnson. Landon has had the opportunity to play for nationally known recording artists, including Faith Evans and five-time Grammy-nominated artist, LEDISI. Currently he is writing and producing music for Pauletta Washington, wife of actor Denzel Washington, and is composing a new orchestral work entitled Fortitude.