Showing posts with label FPAC. Show all posts
Showing posts with label FPAC. Show all posts

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Talking about the FPAC Golf Tournament and other fundraising with Arielle & Alan (audio)

FM #1212 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 1212 in the series. 


This session of the radio show shares my conversation with Alan Mercer, Operations Director of THE BLACK BOX, and Arielle Hardy, Director of Development for FPAC. We met to record this conversation in the Franklin TV Studios on Thursday, May 16, 2024.  

We talk about 

  • FPAC golf event June 10

  • Importance of fundraising to augment income

  • Expansion of FPAC from a regional theater to include equity performers 

The conversation runs about 20 minutes. Let’s listen to my conversation with Arielle and Alan. Audio link -> https://franklin-ma-matters.captivate.fm/episode/fm-1212-fpac-golf-outing-fundraising-05-16-24



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FPAC Golf outing June 10 -> https://www.fpaconline.com/events.php?id=1747 


FPAC support options -> https://www.fpaconline.com/pages.php?pname=fpac_support_us 


THE BLACK BOX page  ->  https://www.theblackboxonline.com/ 



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We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (wfpr.fm) or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial.  


This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.


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For additional information, please visit www.franklin.news/ or  www.Franklinmatters.org/ 


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The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.


I hope you enjoy!

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Friday, April 5, 2024

The Culinary and Performing Arts Come Together for “Culinary Cabaret”

Friday, April 5 at 7 PM, the Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will unite the culinary and performing arts for an inspired evening of fabulous food, drink, and entertainment. The all-inclusive ticket delivers a delicious and entertaining evening at THE BLACK BOX, Franklin’s premier entertainment venue.

The 12th annual Culinary Cabaret spotlights this region's outstanding culinary talent, showcasing fine wines, craft beer, delectable spirits, flavorful dishes, and mouth-watering desserts by culinary partners. This special evening has been a celebrated part of FPAC’s yearly performance calendar for over a decade. 

Culinary Cabaret
Culinary Cabaret

This year’s growing list of partners includes Parker’s Pub, 3, The Shed, The Curry House, JK Catering, The Caribbean Press, Sierra’s Brick Oven Pizza, Applause, Raillery, Intermission Cafe, Pour Richard’s and more.

Featuring entertainment by Electric Youth and special guest artists of the Franklin Performing Arts Company, Culinary Cabaret supports Electric Youth’s 2024 European tour. Franklin Performing Arts Company is Franklin’s own professional theater company. 

THE BLACK BOX is located at 15 W. Central St. in downtown Franklin, MA. For tickets and more information on Culinary Cabaret, visit FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370. Follow Franklin Performing Arts Company and THE BLACK BOX on Facebook and Instagram for updates on programming. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Culinary Cabaret at THE BLACK BOX, Friday, April 5 raises funds to support Electric Youth 2024

Join us at THE BLACK BOX when the culinary and performing arts unite for an inspired evening of fabulous food, libations, and entertainment!
 
The 12th annual Culinary Cabaret spotlights this region’s outstanding culinary talent, showcasing fine wines, craft beer, delectable spirits, flavorful dishes and mouth-watering desserts!

Featuring entertainment by Electric Youth and special guest artists of the Franklin Performing Arts Company. Culinary Cabaret supports Electric Youth 2024! This year’s growing list of partners includes Parker’s Pub, 3, The Shed, Curry House, JK Catering, Caribbean Press, Sierra’s, Applause, Pour Richard’s and more!

Tickets available at THEBLACKBOXonline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370!

Culinary Cabaret at THE BLACK BOX, Friday, April 5 raises funds to support Electric Youth 2024
Culinary Cabaret at THE BLACK BOX, Friday, April 5 raises funds to support Electric Youth 2024 

Monday, February 19, 2024

Tarzan, the Broadway musical, scheduled by FPAC for March 8-17

Further casting has been announced for the Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC)’s reimagined production of Tarzan the Broadway musical starring Broadway’s original Tarzan Josh Strickland March 8-17 at THE BLACK BOX in Franklin, MA. Ruby Lewis (Paramour) will star as Jane alongside Tyrick Wiltez Jones (Hairspray, Finian’s Rainbow, Bat Out of Hell) as Terk. Maria Sylvia Norris and P.T. Mahoney will appear as Kala and Kerchak, with Nick Paone as Clayton and Liam Kerrigan as Young Tarzan. Katie Gray and Andrew Scott Holmes will be featured vocalists with the show’s band. 
Josh Strickland
Josh Strickland


The ensemble, comprised of NYC and Boston/Providence talent as well as collegiate actors from programs like Dean College, includes Casey Harkness Andrade, April Ball, Gia Chessa, Heather Dorler, Takaaki Matsumoto, Emiliano Morales, DJ Ormond, Julia Ormond, Myranda Rose Silva, Kellie Stamp, Johanna Stipetic, Lindsay Tomas, and Isis Wilson. The cast will be joined by Student Apprentice Performers from the Franklin School for the Performing Arts Elena Baker, Helena Cornwell, Devin Curley, Finley Doherty, Emmett Eastman, John Fitzhenry, Anya Fox, Macie Hoben, Matthew Packard, Ashley Pepin, Mason Sanford, Kate Settle, Angelina Willey, Owen Charles, Grayson Kerrigan, and Colette Lelievre. 

FPAC’s flexible theater space, THE BLACK BOX, will be transformed into a multi-stage rock concert centering the iconic Phil Collins music, while telling the classic story by blending Broadway and concert experience. Conceptualized and directed by Raye Lynn Mercer and Ali Funkhouser, the show will feature choreography by Broadway’s Clay Rice-Thomson (Moulin Rouge!, KING KONG, Newsies, Matilda) and music direction by Hallie Wetzell. Based on Disney's epic animated musical adventure and Edgar Rice Burrough's Tarzan of the Apes, Tarzan features heart-pumping music by rock legend, Phil Collins, and a book by Tony Award-winning playwright, David Henry Hwang. High-flying excitement and hits, like the Academy Award winning "You'll Be in My Heart," as well as "Son of Man," and "Two Worlds," make Tarzan an unforgettable theatrical experience.

In 2006, Josh Strickland created the leading role of Tarzan in Disney’s musical Tarzan on Broadway. In 2009, he made his starring Las Vegas debut in Peepshow at Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort while concurrently co-starring in the hit E! reality show Holly's World. Strickland debuted his first single "Report to the Floor," which skyrocketed to the top-five on the iTunes Dance Charts the first week of its release, followed by “Last Dance.” Ruby Lewis starred as Indigo in Cirque du Soleil’s premiere Broadway show, Paramour. She specializes in biographical roles, having played Betty Hutton & Peggy Lee in Lights Out: Nat ‘King’ Cole at the Geffen Playhouse (Ovation Nomination) and Marilyn Monroe in Marilyn! The New Musical (Best Broadway Performer Las Vegas) at the Paris Theatre in Las Vegas, backed by the Marilyn Monroe Estate. Tyrick Wiltez Jones led the U.S. Tour and Off-Broadway productions of Bat Out of Hell as Jagwire. His Broadway credits include Howard in Finian’s Rainbow and Hairspray as well as the Broadway National Tours of Miss Saigon, Seussical, Fosse, and Show Boat. 

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin, MA. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local performers, and emerging artists. Tickets for Tarzan are available at FPAConline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370. 

Monday, February 5, 2024

FPAC to present re-imagined Tarzan Starring Broadway’s Original Tarzan Josh Strickland

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will continue their 2023-24 season with a reimagined immersive production of Tarzan the Broadway musical starring Broadway’s original Tarzan Josh Strickland March 8-17 at THE BLACK BOX in Franklin, MA. The flexible theater space will be transformed into a multi-stage rock concert centering the iconic Phil Collins music, while telling the classic story by blending Broadway and concert experience. 

Conceptualized and directed by Raye Lynn Mercer and Ali Funkhouser, the show will feature choreography by Broadway’s Clay Rice-Thomson (Moulin Rouge!, KING KONG, Newsies, Matilda) and music direction by Hallie Wetzell. Based on Disney's epic animated musical adventure and Edgar Rice Burrough's Tarzan of the Apes, Tarzan features heart-pumping music by rock legend, Phil Collins, and a book by Tony Award-winning playwright, David Henry Hwang. High-flying excitement and hits, like the Academy Award winning "You'll Be in My Heart," as well as "Son of Man," and "Two Worlds," make Tarzan an unforgettable theatrical experience. Further casting will be announced soon. 

In 2006, Josh Strickland created the leading role of Tarzan in Disney’s musical Tarzan on Broadway. In 2009, he made his starring Las Vegas debut in Peepshow at Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort while concurrently co-starring in the hit E! reality show Holly's World. Strickland debuted his first single "Report to the Floor," which skyrocketed to the top-five on the iTunes Dance Charts the first week of its release, followed by “Last Dance.” In 2013, Strickland joined the cast of Vegas! The Show at the Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort in Las Vegas in a starring role. Strickland has also appeared internationally with the all-star cast of Disney’s Broadway Hits, including the Emmy®-winning concert at Royal Albert Hall in London, England. He recently reprised his role as Tarzan in Disney’s Tarzan in Oberhausen, Germany at the Stage Metronom Theatre as well as at the Tuacahn Amphitheatre. 

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin, MA. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local performers, and emerging artists. Tickets for Tarzan are available at FPAConline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370. Follow Franklin Performing Arts Company and THE BLACK BOX on Facebook and Instagram for updates on programming. 

Josh Strickland
Josh Strickland

Friday, February 2, 2024

FPAC Presents "Tarzan - The Stage Musical" March 8 through 17

FPAC presents a re-imagined immersive production of Tarzan the Broadway musical starring Broadway’s original Tarzan Josh Strickland March 8-17! THE BLACK BOX will be transformed into a multi-stage rock concert centering the iconic Phil Collins music, while telling the classic story by blending Broadway and concert experience. 

FPAC Presents "Tarzan - The Stage Musical" March 8 through 17
FPAC Presents "Tarzan - The Stage Musical" March 8 through 17


Conceptualized and directed by Raye Lynn Mercer and Ali Funkhouser with choreography by Broadway’s Clay Rice-Thomson (Moulin Rouge!, KING KONG, Newsies, Matilda). Music Direction by Hallie Wetzell. 

Based on Disney's epic animated musical adventure and Edgar Rice Burrough's Tarzan of the Apes, Tarzan features heart-pumping music by rock legend, Phil Collins, and a book by Tony Award-winning playwright, David Henry Hwang. High-flying excitement and hits, like the Academy Award winning "You'll Be in My Heart," as well as "Son of Man," and "Two Worlds," make Tarzan an unforgettable theatrical experience.

Washed up on the shores of West Africa, an infant boy is taken in and raised by gorillas who name him Tarzan. Apart from striving for acceptance from his ape father, Tarzan's life is mostly monkey business until a human expedition treks into his tribe's territory, and he encounters creatures like himself for the first time. Tarzan struggles to navigate a jungle, thick with emotion, as he discovers his animal upbringing clashing with his human instincts.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Save the Date - FPAC Golf 2024

Golfer? 

Want to help a local fund raising effort? 

Mark the date (June 10) on your calendar but sign up soon so you don't miss out!

http://www.fundraiser.support/FPACGolf2024 (note: I was finally able to confirm this link as it was initially blocked by my antivirus software. It took multiple tries but I found a device that I could get by the block with)

Save the Date - FPAC Golf 2024
Save the Date - FPAC Golf 2024

Thursday, January 4, 2024

FPAC performs "Bright Star!" this weekend at THE BLACK BOX

The Franklin Performing Arts Company presents Steve Martin and Edie Brickell’s bluegrass musical Bright Star! Running this weekend only at THE BLACK BOX! Starring Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, and Kyle Dalsimer.

Ali Funkhouser
Ali Funkhouser
Featuring the Tony-nominated bluegrass score by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Broadway’s Bright Star tells a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and ’40s. When literary editor Alice Murphy meets a young soldier just home from World War II, he awakens her longing for the child she once lost. An uplifting theatrical journey that holds audiences tightly in its grasp, Bright Star is as refreshingly genuine as it is daringly hopeful.


Directed by Raye Lynn Mercer with Music Direction by Hallie Wetzell and Choreography by Hannah Rezendes.


Tickets available at FPAConline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370!


Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Reminder: FPAC to present Steve Martin & Edie Brickell’s Bright Star - Jan 5 - 7, 2024

 The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) is excited to present the musical Bright Star January 5-7 at THE BLACK BOX. Featuring the Tony-nominated bluegrass score by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Broadway’s Bright Star tells a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and ’40s. When literary editor Alice Murphy meets a young soldier just home from World War II, he awakens her longing for the child she once lost. Alice sets out on a journey to understand her past.

 
(L-R) Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, and Kyle Dalsimer
(L-R) Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, and Kyle Dalsimer

The production stars NYC actors Ali Funkhouser as Alice Murphy, Robbie Rescigno as Jimmy Ray, Kyle Dalsimer as Billy Cane, and University of Tampa Musical Theatre Junior Kelsey Breslin as Margo. Boston Conservatory Voice Professor Dan Callaway (The Phantom of the Opera) appears as Daddy Cane/Dr. Norquist. The cast also features Shenandoah Conservatory Musical Theatre student Tzintli Cerda as Lucy, NYC’s Brennan Stefanik as Daryl, and FPAC’s Nick Paone as Mayor Dobbs, Kellie Stamp as Mama Murphy, and Tim Ayres-Kerr as Stanford. 

Rounding out the cast are Emiliano Morales (NYC), Gia Chessa (Dean College), Blas Cerda (Ballet Teatro del Espacio, The National Classical Dance Company of Mexico, Ohio Ballet), Xochitl Tejeda-Cerda (Mexico National Ballet, Ohio Ballet), Takaaki Matsumoto (Boston), DJ Ormond (Boston), Julia Ormond (Dean College), Hannah Rezendes (Salve Regina University), and Lindsay Tomas (FPAC). Joining them are FPAC Student Apprentice performers from the Franklin School for the Performing Arts Elena Baker, Hannah Connors, Devin Curley, Devin DeAngelis, and Mason Sanford. 

With beautiful Bluegrass melodies and powerfully moving characters, the story unfolds as a rich tapestry of deep emotion. An uplifting theatrical journey that holds audiences tightly in its grasp, Bright Star is as refreshingly genuine as it is daringly hopeful. Directed by FPAC Artistic Director Raye Lynn Mercer, with music direction by Hallie Wetzell, and choreography by Hannah Rezendes.

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin. Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, Kyle Dalsimer, and Dan Callaway are all members of Actors’ Equity. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local artists, and students of the arts. Follow Franklin Performing Arts Company and THE BLACK BOX on Facebook and Instagram for updates on programming. 

Tickets for FPAC’s Bright Star and other shows are available at FPAConline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

FPAC to present Steve Martin & Edie Brickell’s Bright Star - January 5-7, 2024

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) is excited to present the musical Bright Star January 5-7 at THE BLACK BOX. Featuring the Tony-nominated bluegrass score by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Broadway’s Bright Star tells a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and ’40s. When literary editor Alice Murphy meets a young soldier just home from World War II, he awakens her longing for the child she once lost. Alice sets out on a journey to understand her past.
 
(L-R) Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, and Kyle Dalsimer
(L-R) Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, and Kyle Dalsimer

The production stars NYC actors Ali Funkhouser as Alice Murphy, Robbie Rescigno as Jimmy Ray, Kyle Dalsimer as Billy Cane, and University of Tampa Musical Theatre Junior Kelsey Breslin as Margo. Boston Conservatory Voice Professor Dan Callaway (The Phantom of the Opera) appears as Daddy Cane/Dr. Norquist. The cast also features Shenandoah Conservatory Musical Theatre student Tzintli Cerda as Lucy, NYC’s Brennan Stefanik as Daryl, and FPAC’s Nick Paone as Mayor Dobbs, Kellie Stamp as Mama Murphy, and Tim Ayres-Kerr as Stanford. 

Rounding out the cast are Emiliano Morales (NYC), Gia Chessa (Dean College), Blas Cerda (Ballet Teatro del Espacio, The National Classical Dance Company of Mexico, Ohio Ballet), Xochitl Tejeda-Cerda (Mexico National Ballet, Ohio Ballet), Takaaki Matsumoto (Boston), DJ Ormond (Boston), Julia Ormond (Dean College), Hannah Rezendes (Salve Regina University), and Lindsay Tomas (FPAC). Joining them are FPAC Student Apprentice performers from the Franklin School for the Performing Arts Elena Baker, Hannah Connors, Devin Curley, Devin DeAngelis, and Mason Sanford. 

With beautiful Bluegrass melodies and powerfully moving characters, the story unfolds as a rich tapestry of deep emotion. An uplifting theatrical journey that holds audiences tightly in its grasp, Bright Star is as refreshingly genuine as it is daringly hopeful. Directed by FPAC Artistic Director Raye Lynn Mercer, with music direction by Hallie Wetzell, and choreography by Hannah Rezendes.

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin. Ali Funkhouser, Robbie Rescigno, Kyle Dalsimer, and Dan Callaway are all members of Actors’ Equity. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local artists, and students of the arts. Follow Franklin Performing Arts Company and THE BLACK BOX on Facebook and Instagram for updates on programming. 

Tickets for FPAC’s Bright Star and other shows are available at FPAConline.com or by calling the box office at 508-528-3370.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Celebrate the Holidays with Humbug! Dec 16 & 17

FPAC Holiday Productions will close its December season with the return of Humbug! December 16 and 17. 

A family favorite since debuting as part of FPAC’s 2008 season, Humbug! is an original musical retelling of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, starring the script’s writer, Nick Paone, as Ebenezer Scrooge. With musical hits of every genre and live accompaniment by a 10-piece band of professional musicians, Humbug! transports audiences from Dickensian England to contemporary America as the novel’s iconic characters and storyline are cleverly reimagined with modern setting and dialogue. Humbug! delivers a holiday gift of hilarity with a timely – and timeless – message.

Celebrate the Holidays with Humbug! Dec 16 & 17
Celebrate the Holidays with Humbug! Dec 16 & 17

The FPAC original features sets of parents and their children, siblings, and friends that are like family as part of a large ensemble cast of over 100 professional artists, community performers and students of the arts. “Live theater creates a space where we can come together and have a collective experience,” says Mireille Eastman, mother of two “Humbug!” student cast members Ameline and Emmett Eastman. She has previously also performed in the production along with her husband, Charley Eastman, and all three of their children. “We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be involved in 'Humbug!' as a family. Sharing our passion for live theater with our children has brought us all closer together.”

The show also features mother/daughter pairs Kylie and Edna Bodiya, Kim and Baree Frigon, Lindsay and Lila Hartman, Kristin and Polly Palson, and Robin and Zoey Tucker. Siblings Christopher and Owen Charles, Katie and Helena Cornwell, Jenna and Anna Cusano, Julia and DJ Ormond, Brodie and Devin DeAngelis, Aida and Julian DiChiara, Kayla and Macie Hoben, Liam and Grayson Kerrigan, Matthew and Shane Packard, and Charlotte and Katherine Weldon all perform together as well as married couples Tim and Liz Ayres-Kerr and Greg Leach and Michele Webster. 

Youth development in the arts is a special focus of FPAC, founded in 1991 by Artistic Director Raye Lynn Mercer. Productions provide ongoing opportunities for families to connect through the arts, with multiple generations sharing rehearsals and time on stage together.

Humbug! is presented at the Franklin High School Auditorium. For tickets and more information, visit www.FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370. 

Saturday, November 18, 2023

The Nutcracker, a traditional & key FPAC Holiday Production, is scheduled for Dec 2, 3

FPAC Holiday Productions will present two shows as part of its annual holiday season. December kicks off with the holiday classic: The Nutcracker, presented December 2 and 3 at the Franklin High School Auditorium. Experience all the festive magic and colorful splendor of The Nutcracker as FPAC stages its cherished annual production of the holiday classic with live orchestra conducted by Austin Davy, special guest artists and more than 100 area dancers. 

The Nutcracker remains a highly anticipated and treasured part of the FPAC season - a popular holiday tradition for more than 20 years. The world-famous ballet, set to Tchaikovsky’s beloved score, delights the imaginations of audiences young and old with a professional production at a reasonable price. The production is staged by Cheryl Madeux of American Ballet Theatre, Hartford Ballet, and Joffrey Ballet. Madeux is currently director of BalletFranklin- the ballet conservatory at the Franklin School for the Performing Arts. 

Lucy Stewart
Lucy Stewart
Lucy Stewart of Complexions Contemporary Ballet will appear as The Sugar Plum Fairy. Stewart grew up in a suburb of Denver, Colorado, where she spent her early years dancing at a small studio in the mountains and then at Colorado Ballet. Originally training in all forms of dance, her primary areas of study included ballet, contemporary and jazz. She spent her summers training with American Ballet Theatre, The Joffrey Ballet, COMPLEXIONS, and Colorado Ballet. Lucy has studied the last two years at The Juilliard School in the dance division where she had the opportunity to study with various leading artists in the dance world, including Ohad Naharin, Tiler Peck, Rena Butler, and James Whiteside, as well as the opportunity to perform Set and Reset by Trisha Brown. For the last several years, Lucy studied regularly with John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow from ABT. 

Jacopo Calvo, also of Complexions Contemporary Ballet, will join Stewart as her Cavalier. Calvo was born in Asti, Italy. He began his dance training at the age of 11 at his hometown school, Ritmo Danza. At 18, he moved to NYC where he attended The Ailey School on scholarship. He has worked with choreographers such as Marcus Jarrell Willis, Brice Mousset, Ray Mercer, Earl Mosley, Francesca Harper, and artist Nick Cave in The Let Go at the Park Avenue Armory. He has attended summer intensives with American Ballet Theater and Complexions Contemporary Ballet, and RESET 2021 with Studio Wayne McGregor. Jacopo has performed with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for their 60th Anniversary Season in Memoria at New York City Center and for the Ailey Spirit Gala. This is his 2nd season with Complexions.

FPAC Holiday Productions are presented at the Franklin High School Auditorium. For tickets and more information, visit www.FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370. 

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

FPAC to Present One-Man Comedy Buyer & Cellar Starring Paul Rescigno - Nov 17 through 19

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will continue their 2023-24 season with the hilarious comedy Buyer & Cellar starring Paul Rescigno November 17-19 at THE BLACK BOX. Directed by Nick Paone.  

As chronicled in “My Passion for Design,” Barbra Streisand has a series of "Main Street" storefronts beneath her Malibu barn, inspired by the Winterthur Museum in Delaware in order to house her collection of dolls and other trinkets. Buyer & Cellar is a one-man comedy that follows Alex More, a struggling actor who is down on his luck after being fired from Disneyland. He lands a job curating the Malibu basement of Barbra Streisand.  Alex at first does not meet his employer, but eventually Streisand comes down to peruse her collection, and the two strike up a friendly relationship. The play chronicles the fictional exchanges between Alex and his idol. 

Paul Rescigno
Paul Rescigno is a Los Angeles based actor who has previously performed on the FPAC stage in Something Rotten! (Nigel), The Drowsy Chaperone (Gangster 2), and Sweeney Todd (Pirelli). He has written for The Late Show with David Letterman and appeared on TV in The Resident (FOX), The Other Two (HBO Max), Odd Mom Out (Bravo), Late Show with David Letterman (CBS), Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix), Mozart in the Jungle (Amazon), Black Box (ABC). His theater credits include Boats And…, The Boys From Syracuse, and The Comedy of Errors. Rescigno studied at Shakespeare's Globe in London and holds a BFA in Acting from Syracuse University. Along with his twin brother Robbie, he writes and performs their award-winning comedy show The Rescignos.

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local artists, and students of the arts. Later this season, FPAC will present Bright Star, an immersive Tarzan starring Broadway’s original Tarzan Josh Strickland, and August: Osage County. 

Content Warning: Buyer & Cellar contains some strong language. Buyer & Cellar runs November 17-19 at THE BLACK BOX. For tickets and more information, visit FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370.


Sunday, November 12, 2023

FPAC to Present Hilarious Comedy Buyer & Cellar Starring Paul Rescigno - Nov 17-19

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will continue their 2023-24 season with the hilarious comedy Buyer & Cellar starring Paul Rescigno November 17-19 at THE BLACK BOX. Directed by Nick Paone.  

Alex Moore has a story to tell. A struggling actor in L.A., he takes a job working in the Malibu basement of a beloved megastar. One day, the Lady Herself comes downstairs to play. It feels like real bonding in the basement, but will their relationship ever make it upstairs? Buyer & Cellar is an outrageous comedy about the price of fame, the cost of things, and the oddest of odd jobs. Winner of the 2014–2015 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Solo Show.
Paul Rescigno
Paul Rescigno


Paul Rescigno is a Los Angeles based actor who has previously performed on the FPAC stage in Something Rotten! (Nigel), The Drowsy Chaperone (Gangster 2), and Sweeney Todd (Pirelli). He has written for The Late Show with David Letterman and appeared on TV in The Resident (FOX), The Other Two (HBO Max), Odd Mom Out (Bravo), Late Show with David Letterman (CBS), Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix), Mozart in the Jungle (Amazon), Black Box (ABC). His theater credits include Boats And…, The Boys From Syracuse, and The Comedy of Errors. Rescigno studied at Shakespeare's Globe in London and holds a BFA in Acting from Syracuse University. Along with his twin brother Robbie, he writes and performs their award-winning comedy show The Rescignos.

FPAC is an Actors’ Equity Small Professional Theater company based at THE BLACK BOX in downtown Franklin. Each season, FPAC produces musicals, plays, ballets, and more featuring Broadway stars, professional actors, local artists, and students of the arts. Later this season, FPAC will present Bright Star, an immersive Tarzan starring Broadway’s original Tarzan Josh Strickland, and August: Osage County. 

Content Warning: Buyer & Cellar contains some strong language. Buyer & Cellar runs November 17-19 at THE BLACK BOX. For tickets and more information, visit FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370.

Monday, October 9, 2023

Broadway Star Takes FPAC “Under the Sea” with Disney’s The Little Mermaid

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will open their 2023-24 Season with Disney’s The Little Mermaid. FPAC is known for bringing Broadway talent to their casts and creative teams and the Disney hit is no exception. Broadway’s Christopher Rice-Thomson will direct and choreograph the show running October 13-22 at THE BLACK BOX.
Christopher Rice-Thomson
Christopher Rice-Thomson

Rice-Thomson, who recently finished a stint touring North America with Hamilton, has appeared on Broadway in The Book of Mormon and Pretty Woman. He is also the creator of the viral dance series “#Tappy.” His impressive performance credits also include a five year history with FPAC. Rice-Thomson first came to Franklin in 2018 when he starred in their production of Newsies. 

Since then, he has appeared in shows like last season’s Something Rotten!, many galas and concerts, and choreographed The Sound of Music. He even premiered Christopher Rice’s The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE with FPAC in 2019. “I never thought I’d say that I have a home-away-from-home in Franklin, Massachusetts, but I am so thrilled I get to say that now,” says Rice-Thomson. “So many things about the beautiful town and supportive community stuck with me. I am honored to be back with my Franklin family for this exciting new production of The Little Mermaid!”

Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen's most beloved stories and the classic animated film, Disney's The Little Mermaid is a hauntingly beautiful love story for the ages. With music by eight-time Academy Award winner, Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater, and a compelling book by Doug Wright, this fishy fable will capture the heart with its irresistible songs, including "Under the Sea," "Kiss the Girl," and "Part of Your World." On staging this iconic story at THE BLACK BOX, Rice-Thomson comments, “THE BLACK BOX is so unique and truly allows us to tell the story a million different ways. We have chosen new and inventive ways to bring the worlds above and under the sea to life. You’ll have to come see it to experience it for yourself!”

Featuring a cast of New York and New England talent, the show is led by NYC’s Malia Monk as Ariel, Mike Cefalo (Broadway’s New York, New York) as Eric, Miracle Myles as Sebastian, Katie Gray as Ursula, and Daniel Barrett as Scuttle. Rice-Thomson notes, “Our new staging– with the audience on both sides of the theater and the actors at the heart of it all, creates an immersive experience that will make you feel like you're part of Ariel's world.”

Disney’s The Little Mermaid runs October 13-22 at THE BLACK BOX. For tickets and more information, visit FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370.

Friday, October 6, 2023

Did you hear Talk Talk Boom's episode with Clay Rice Thompson? (video)

In this episode, Raye Lynn Mercer, the founder and director of Franklin School for the Performing Arts and Franklin Performing Arts Company, chats with Broadway star Clay Rice Thomson, who's currently starring in Moulin Rouge on Broadway. 
He has performed in shows such as Newsies, Matilda, King Kong, and Moulin Rouge. They talk about Clay’s experience from his Broadway debut in Newsies, his experience working with different directors and choreographers, his advice for aspiring performers, and his involvement with the Franklin School for the Performing Arts. 

Recorded at FPAC’s THE BLACK BOX theater in Franklin, MA.


Tuesday, October 3, 2023

FPAC’s The Little Mermaid brings Broadway to MetroWest Region

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) will open their 2023-24 Season with Disney’s The Little Mermaid. FPAC is known for bringing Broadway talent to their casts and creative teams and the Disney hit is no exception. Broadway’s Christopher Rice-Thomson will direct and choreograph the show running October 13-22 at THE BLACK BOX.

Featuring a cast of New York and New England talent, the show is led by NYC’s Malia Monk as Ariel, Mike Cefalo (recently on Broadway in New York, New York) as Eric, Miracle Myles. as Sebastian, Katie Gray as Ursula, and Daniel Barrett as Scuttle. Boston Conservatory Voice Professor Craig Juricka will appear as King Triton. Berklee student Christian David and NYC’s Emiliano Morales will play eels Flotsam and Jetsam. FPAC Student Apprentice Aida DiChiara will take the stage as Flounder alongside FPAC favorites Nick Paone and Michael Baratta as Chef Louis and Grimsby. 

The ensemble is made up of New York and Boston professional performers, local artists, and students from collegiate performance programs including Harvard, Boston Conservatory, Berklee, and Dean College: Caitlin Beirne, Elena Baker, Liz Byrne, Maria Norris, Megan Elyse Fulmer, Melissa Campbell, Aidan Leach, Arielle Hardy, Brandon Wong, Brennan Stefanik, Gia Chessa, Hadasa Barmor, Julia Ormond, Laryssa Humphrey, Lindsay Tomas, Melissa Baratta, Myranda Rose Silva, Rachel Alvarez-Robinson, Takaaki Matsumoto, Tess Stevens, Tim Ayres-Kerr, Xochitl Tejeda-Cerda, and Yianna Zicherman.

The ensemble is joined by Student Apprentice performers from the Franklin School for the Performing Arts Dacia Biello, Ani Corkran, Devin Curley, Emmett Eastman, Lila Hartman, Kayla Hoben, Hailey Hulbig, Colette Lelievre, and Matthew Packard. 

Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen's most beloved stories and the classic animated film, Disney's The Little Mermaid is a hauntingly beautiful love story for the ages. With music by eight-time Academy Award winner, Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater, and a compelling book by Doug Wright, this fishy fable will capture the heart with its irresistible songs, including "Under the Sea," "Kiss the Girl," and "Part of Your World." On staging this iconic story at THE BLACK BOX, director/choreographer Rice-Thomson comments, “THE BLACK BOX is so unique and truly allows us to tell the story a million different ways.”

Rice-Thomson, who recently finished a stint touring North America with Hamilton, has appeared on Broadway in The Book of Mormon and Pretty Woman. He is also the creator of the viral dance series “#Tappy.” His impressive performance credits also include a five year history with FPAC. Rice-Thomson first came to Franklin in 2018 when he starred in their production of Newsies. Since then he has appeared in shows like last season’s Something Rotten!, many galas and concerts, and choreographed The Sound of Music. He even premiered Christopher Rice’s The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE with FPAC in 2019. “I never thought I’d say that I have a home-away-from-home in Franklin, Massachusetts, but I am so thrilled I get to say that now,” says Rice-Thomson. “So many things about the beautiful town and supportive community stuck with me. I am honored to be back with my Franklin family for this exciting new production of The Little Mermaid!”

Disney’s The Little Mermaid runs October 13-22 at THE BLACK BOX. For tickets and more information, visit FPAConline.com or call the box office at 508-528-3370.

Malia Monk (Ariel), Mike Cefalo (Prince Eric, recently on Broadway in New York, New York), and Miracle Myles (Sebastian)
Malia Monk (Ariel), Mike Cefalo (Prince Eric, recently on Broadway in New York, New York), and Miracle Myles (Sebastian)

Monday, September 11, 2023

Talking about the fun pathways at FSPA with Raye Lynn and Susana (audio)

FM #1058 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 1058 in the series. 


This session of the radio show shares my conversation with Raye Lynn Mercer, founder and Director of the Franklin School for Performing Arts, and special guest FSPA alum Susana Cordon. We recorded this in the Franklin Public Radio Studio on  Thursday, June 1, 2023.  

Yes, this sat in the archives for a while due to some unforeseen events that held up the publication. Aside from the future view, now in the past, the pathways talked of still apply.

Susana tells her amazing story following her path through FSPA to Carnegie-Mellon and is looking forward to an exciting year with a performance in Violet (with FPAC), an alumni show with the Electric Youth European tour this summer, fall semester in Wales, followed by final semester and graduation in 2024. Definitely a commencement of whatever her future holds for her. 

We cover a lot of ground in about 34 minutes with Raye Lynn and Susana. 

Audio file -> https://franklin-ma-matters.captivate.fm/episode/fm-1058-fspa-fun-pathways-06-01-23

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Tickets for Violet are available -> https://www.theblackboxonline.com/events.php?id=1597 


Susana was quoted in a article about Carnegie-Mellon https://newsinteractive.post-gazette.com/carnegie-mellon-university-school-of-drama-star-factory-patrick-wilson-susan-tsu-john-wells-myhala-herrold-purnell-center/


FPSA post about Susan’s acceptance at Carnegie-Mellon

https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/fspa-senior-accepted-to-prestigious.html


Original conversation with Raye Lynn as we spend 38 minutes talking about 38 Main St and the evolution of FSPA to FPAC, THE BLACK BOX, et al …

https://www.franklinmatters.org/2022/09/raye-lynn-mercer-shares-some-stories-of.html


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The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.


I hope you enjoy!

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Susana in the FPAC production of Tartuffe at THE BLACK BOX
Susana in the FPAC production of Tartuffe at THE BLACK BOX