2017 Season News

Press Contact

for information, photos,

press tickets, interviews, etc.

Any photos on this website may be used for editorial or social media purposes.

 

Kathy Kahn

woodminsterpr@gmail.com

510-418-8523

  • June: 51st season opens with Mamma Mia!

    PHOTO CAPTION

    Joy Sherratt* (center) plays Donna Sheridan, mother of the inquisitive Sophie, in Woodminster’s Mamma Mia!  Performing "Super Trouper" with her are her best friends (and back-up singers) Tanya (L) played by Leandra Ramm* and Rosie (R) played by Krista Wigle*. (*member of Actors Equity Association.  Photo by Kathy Kahn.) Click on the photo to retrieve a print resolution version.

     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

     

    Press contact: Kathy Kahn, woodminsterpr@gmail.com, 510-418-8523

    Theater contact: Harriet Schlader, harriet@woodminster.com, 510-531-9597

    Website: Woodminster Summer Musicals

     

    CALENDAR INFORMATION

    What:  Mamma Mia! based on the music of ABBA

    Presented by: Woodminster Summer Musicals by Producers Associates, Inc.

    When: 8 pm on July 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 16, 2017

    Where: Woodminster Amphitheater, Joaquin Miller Park, Joaquin Miller Road at upper Sanborn Drive, Oakland

    Tickets: 510-531-9597 or www.woodminster.com or at the box office before any performance

     

    PRESS RELEASE

    Woodminster Summer Musicals Opens 51st Season July 7 With Mamma Mia!

    Production is Bay Area Regional Premiere of International Smash Hit ABBA Musical

     

    June 16, 2017, Oakland, CA -- Producers Associates announces that the opening show of the 51st season of the Woodminster Summer Musicals is Mamma Mia!  This popular musical will be performed July 7-16 at Woodminster Amphitheater in Oakland's Joaquin Miller Park, located on Joaquin Miller Road at upper Sanborn Drive in the Oakland hills.  According to Music Theatre International, Woodminster’s production is the Bay Area regional theater premiere of Mamma Mia!

     

    Mamma Mia! follows the adventures of Sophie, a young woman who, before her own wedding, wants to discover the identity of her father.  Her mother, Donna, has never been forthcoming, so Sophie secretly invites three men from her mother’s past to her own wedding, on the sunny Greek island where she was conceived twenty years ago.  Mamma Mia! is packed with upbeat ABBA songs including “Dancing Queen,” “Super Trouper,” “Gimme Gimme Gimme,” and “Take a Chance On Me.”

     

    Says director Joel Schlader, “Mamma Mia is a really lighthearted show, and it’s going to be a very fun way to start the season. The music is so upbeat and infectious that even people who aren’t ABBA fans and don’t have a fond memory of disco music will dance their way out of the theater.  And the story is very funny and appealing, and even has something to say about generations in families, especially mothers and daughters. Everybody is going to have a great time at Mamma Mia!

     

    Tickets are available by phone, at 510-531-9597, online at www.woodminster.com, or in person at Woodminster Amphitheater 11-4 daily or at the box office before any performance.  Performances are July 7 (opening), July 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, and 16, all at 8 p.m.

     

    Tickets for summer musicals at Woodminster Amphitheater range from $31 to $64, with a $2 discount for seniors 62 and older.  Since its founding over 50 years ago, one of Producers Associates’ missions has been to make live theater affordable for families in the local community, and the organization offers many ticket discount programs with that in mind.  They include:

    • Season tickets and flex passes (about a 15% discount)

    • Group rate 25+ (about half price, specific performances)

    • Group rate 12+ (about 15% off, any performance)

    • Oakland residents (about half price, opening night of each show)

    • Millennials 17-30 (about half price, at the door any performance)

    • Kids Come Free (up to 16 yrs, 1 free with 1 paying adult, at the door any performance)

    • K75 (up to 16 yrs, about 75% off, 5 discounted kids with 1 paying adult, pre-sales okay, any performance)

    ("About half price" indicates half price adjusted for the city facility fee of $2.50 per ticket.)

     

    For information about tickets, and details about discount programs, check www.woodminster.com or call 510-531-9597.

     

    Mamma Mia! will be directed by Joel Schlader, with music direction by Daniel Thomas and choreography by Jody Jaron.  Woodminster shows are performed with live orchestras, and musicians are members of Musicians Local No. 6.

     

    The role of Donna will be played by Joy Sherratt, Bay Area actor and co-founder of Pacific Coast Repertory Theatre, who was most recently on the Woodminster stage as Cathy in 2009’s Singin’ In The Rain.  Her best friends Tanya and Rosie are played by Leandra Ramm and Krista Wigle.  The three men who might be Sophie’s father are played by Geoffrey Blaisdell, Dwight Mahabir, and Robert Moorhead.  The latter two men have performed at Woodminster many times, most recently for Mahabir the role of Billy Flynn in 2016’s Chicago and for Moorhead the role of Frank Abagnale Sr. in 2014’s Catch Me If You Can.  The inquisitive Sophie is played by Amanda Farbstein, and her fiancé Sky is played by Romar De Claro, last seen at Woodminster as Ta in 2014’s Flower Drum Song. The full cast, including both professional (AEA member) actors and talented local community members, numbers 36.

     

    Mamma Mia! was written by Catherine Johnson, a British playwright who was inspired by the 1968 film Buona Sera Mrs. Campbell, as well as the songs of Swedish pop group ABBA.  The title is taken from the group’s 1975 #1 hit, and the original ABBA composers and band members, Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, were involved in the project during all stages.  Mamma Mia originally opened on London’s West End in 1999, and has been running ever since, to date more than 7000 performances and 8 million audience members.  The 2001 Broadway production opened “out of town” in San Francisco and also did try-outs in Los Angeles and Chicago before its official Broadway opening.  Once in New York, it ran for 14 years and nearly 6000 performances.

     

    Mamma Mia! has been called a global entertainment phenomenon.  The show has had professional productions in over 400 cities and has been seen by over 60 million people worldwide.  With US regional theater licensing just recently available, that number is sure to increase rapidly.

     

    After Mamma Mia! the 51st season of the Woodminster Summer Musicals will continue with Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific August 4-13 and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast September 1-10.

     

    Over the last 51 years, Producers Associates has presented 160 productions, entertaining about a million Woodminster Summer Musicals ticket holders.  The shows have been performed by more than 5000 actors, over 20% of them members of Actors Equity Association, making the organization one of the Bay Area's most reliable employers of professional actors.  The musicals have always been performed with live professional orchestras, which have included 23 different conductors and over 1800 members of Musicians Local #6.  In addition, the organization has employed 26 professional set designers, 17 lighting designers, 25 costume designers, 6 sound technicians, 18 choreographers, 6 directors, and over 1,500 young backstage interns.

     

    Woodminster Summer Musicals are performed under the stars at Woodminster Amphitheater, an open-air performance facility in Joaquin Miller Park high in the Oakland Hills. The park's spectacular views and serene woodsy environment made it the perfect setting for the amphitheater, cascades, reflecting pool, and paths that were originally built as a WPA project in 1939-40. For many East Bay families, it is a long-standing summer tradition to enjoy a picnic in the park and then see a musical at Woodminster.   For more information about the 2017 season or the history of the organization, visit  www.woodminster.com.

     

    ___________________________

    Kathy Kahn, Publicity & Marketing

    Woodminster Summer Musicals

    Producers Associates, Inc.

    510-418-8523

    www.woodminster.com

    woodminsterpr@gmail.com

     

  • May: 51th Season announced

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

     

    Press contact: Kathy Kahn, woodminsterpr@gmail.com, 510-418-8523
    Theater contact: Harriet Schlader, harriet@woodminster.com, 510-531-9597
    Website: 
    Woodminster Summer Musicals

     

    PRESS RELEASE
    Woodminster Summer Musicals Announces 51st Season for Summer 2017

    Family-Friendly Season Opens in July With Bay Area Regional Premiere of Mamma Mia! 
    Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific and Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Follow in August, September

     

    May 6, 2017, Oakland, CA — Producers Associates announces the 51st season of the Woodminster Summer Musicals in Joaquin Miller Park.  2017’s shows are Mamma Mia! (July), South Pacific (August), and Beauty and the Beast (September).

     

    Mamma Mia!, performed July 7-9 and 13-16, is newly available for regional theaters after its 14-year run on Broadway and numerous tours. Woodminster’s production will be the Bay Area premiere of this international smash hit based on the music of ABBA, music and lyrics by Benny Andersson & Björn Ulvaeus with some songs with Stig Anderson and book by Catherine Johnson. The lighthearted story follows the adventures of a young woman who, before her own wedding, wants to discover the identity of her father.  She invites three men from her mother’s past to her wedding on the Greek island where she was conceived twenty years ago.  Mamma Mia! features a number of dance numbers to upbeat ABBA songs including “Dancing Queen,” “Super Trouper,” “Gimme Gimme Gimme,” and “Take a Chance On Me.”  This show is appropriate for the whole family.

    South Pacific, performed August 4-6 and 10-13, is the classic 1949 Rodgers and Hammerstein adaptation of Michener’s Tales of the South Pacific, contains some of the most famous songs in musical theater history, including “Bali Ha’i,” “Some Enchanted Evening,” “Younger Than Springtime,” and “You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught.” South Pacific has likable characters and a compelling plot, and will appeal to all ages with the possible except of very young children.  Older children will enjoy the lively musical numbers, and teens will appreciate the thoughtful treatment of issues like racism and the costs of war.  This nearly 70-year-old show is still relevant and entertaining, and has continued to be revived and toured in the 21st century.

     

    Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, performed September 1-3 and 7-10, is the popular stage version adapted from the 1991 Academy-award-winning animated film, and in turn has led to 2017’s live action film version. Originally a classic French fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of  Belle, a smart and heroic young woman, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. His household is also under the spell, and the stage version has actors playing the roles of household items. The songs include the familiar classics from the animated film like “Be Our Guest,” “Gaston,” and the haunting title ballad, “Beauty and the Beast.” This show is appropriate for all ages.

     

    Says Managing Director, Harriet Schlader, “We have always made families a priority, because we feel so strongly about making live theater available to our whole community, including children.  We love that so many people tell us they saw their first live show here, and every year we talk about kids and families when we’re selecting our season.  This year, we’re making a special effort, and we think all three of our shows will be great for almost all ages.  Also, we have designed ticket discounts with families in mind — this year we have a brand new 75% discount program for 16 and younger.   We hope lots of young people will see their first live musicals at Woodminster this summer!”

     

    Tickets for the 2017 season are available online, by phone, or by mail.  Ticket prices range from $31 to $64, with season tickets providing about a 15% discount, and numerous other discounts available, including:

    • NEW in 2017 is the K75 program.  This is about a 75% discount for tickets for children and teens 16 and younger who attend with adults (up to 5 kids per 1 adult).  Any performance, purchase tickets any time.
    • Kids Come Free continues to provide free tickets for kids up to 16 years old who attend with adults (1 kid per 1 adult). Any performance, available night of performance only.
    • Millennials’ Half Price (ages 17-30). Any performance, night of performance only.
    • Oaklanders’ Half Price (with ID). Opening nights only, purchase tickets any time with code.
    • Group Rate (25 or more tickets) About half price.
    • Mini-group Rate (12 or more tickets) About 15% off.

    (Details of discount programs.)

     

    Woodminster Summer Musicals are performed under the stars at Woodminster Amphitheater, an historic city-owned outdoor performance facility in Joaquin Miller Park high in the Oakland Hills. The park's spectacular views and serene woodsy environment made it the perfect setting for the amphitheater, cascades, reflecting pool, and paths that were originally built as a WPA project in 1939-40. With a dedicated board of directors, Producers Associates, Inc. has maintained and improved the facility, which attracts audience from all over the Bay Area and beyond, contributing to the economic health of the neighborhood.  The Woodminster Summer Musicals are produced in cooperation with the City of Oakland's Parks and Recreation Department, and the City derives over $45,000 per year in facility fees plus considerable revenues from parking fees.

     

    For many East Bay families, it is a long-standing summer tradition to enjoy a picnic in the park and then see a musical at Woodminster.   For more information about the 2017 season or the history of the organization, visit  www.woodminster.com.

     

    ###

    ___________________________

    Kathy Kahn, Publicity & Marketing

    Woodminster Summer Musicals

    Producers Associates, Inc.

    510-418-8523

    www.woodminster.com

    woodminsterpr@gmail.com

     

Woodminster Summer Musicals produced in cooperation with the City of Oakland Parks & Recreation Department.

50th Anniversary logo designed by Joanne Romeo.

© 2016 Producers Associates Inc.  •  This website last updated 6-22-2017