Thursday, October 6, 2011

Elton John and Tim Rice's Aida at MPO's Kelsey Theatre

"Elton John & Tim Rice's AIDA"
Delivers a Timeless Love Story

Tony-Winning Pop/Rock Musical from the Composer and Lyricist of Disney’s "The Lion King" Coming to Kelsey Theatre November 18, 2011
Maurer Productions OnStage is bringing the award-winning Broadway musical Elton John & Tim Rice’s AIDA to the stage. This riveting, romantic pop/rock epic will appear at Mercer County Community College’s Kelsey Theatre in West Windsor, NJ November 18-27, 2011. A public reception, with an opportunity to meet the cast and crew, will be held on opening night.

Winner of four Tony Awards when Disney’s Hyperion Theatrical Group first brought it to Broadway, Elton John & Tim Rice’s AIDA is set in ancient Egypt and tells the story of an enslaved Nubian princess, her conflicted Egyptian captor, and a forbidden love that rocks the ancient world to its core. Part Broadway musical, part dance spectacular and part rock concert, AIDA is an epic tale about the power and timelessness of love.

The show features music by pop legend Sir Elton John, one of the most successful music artists in the modern era, and lyrics by the amazing Sir Tim Rice, who made his reputation writing hits like Jesus Christ Superstar and Evita. After their successful partnership writing the score for both the film and stage productions of The Lion King, this dynamic musical duo teamed up again with the idea to pen Disney’s first Broadway musical for grown-ups, and that’s how AIDA was born.

Maurer Productions OnStage, is no stranger to staging blockbusters, having brought acclaimed productions of Singin’ in the Rain and Man of La Mancha to Kelsey Theatre in recent years. The show’s award-winning director, Dan Maurer explains the creative team’s approach to their production of Elton John & Tim Rice’s AIDA.

“Go big or go home, that’s our motto for this production,’ Maurer said. “AIDA is a show not often done in Central New Jersey so we plan to make it a real special event. We’re pulling out all the stops for this stage spectacle.”

Many of the costumes for this cast of 24 actors will be hand-made specifically for this production. This show has a very particular style and the company plans to bring that style to their Kelsey production. No stranger to special effects, having brought the house (and many gallons of water) down during Singin’ in the Rain, the Maurer production team is looking to feature a few technical surprises as well.

“The goal,” said Maurer, “is to both honor and yet refresh the AIDA theater goers know and love. We plan for the show to be a bit of Broadway, a splash of Maurer magic and bit of Kelsey Theatre fun, all carried by the singing voices of an amazing cast.”

When the show is mounted by Maurer Production OnStage it will feature a cast that includes Meera Mohan of Plainsboro, NJ as Aida; Tom Coppolecchia of Mount Holly, NJ as Radames; Kimberly Suskind of Galloway, NJ as the Princess Amneris; Jahmir Scott of Allentown, NJ as Mereb; Brian Meltzer of Pennington, NJ as Zoser; Scott Karlin of Plainsboro, NJ as the Pharaoh; Alwynn Baskin of Lambertville, NJ as Nubian King Amonasro; and Yakenya Moise of Princeton, NJ as Nehebka.

The women’s ensemble includes Sheilla Telo of Hamilton, NJ; Cheryl King of Robbinsville, NJ; Leia Rochester of Willingboro, NJ; Beverly Quo-Hamilton of Princeton, NJ; Arielle, Rabano of Hillsborough, NJ; Alexa Lupinacci of Hamilon, NJ; Jen Baranowski of Brick, NJ; Melissa Geerloff of Mercerville, NJ; Julia Procaccino of Yardley, PA; Mollie Rubenstein of West Windsor, NJ; Abby Oliver of Mercerville, NJ.

The men's ensemble includes John Glace of Morrisville, PA; Ben Menahem of Plainsboro, NJ; Brian Maquire of Lakehurst, NJ; Steven Dunagan of Trenton, NJ; De Haven Rogers of Chambersburg, NJ.

Maurer Productions OnStage will present Elton John & Tim Rice’s AIDA Fridays, November 18th and 25th at 8pm, Saturdays, November 19th and 26th at 2pm and 8pm, Sundays, November 20th and 27th, at 2pm in the Kelsey Theatre on the West Windsor Campus of Mercer County Community College. The theatre is located on the college's West Windsor Campus at 1200 Old Trenton Road. Free parking is available next to the theatre. To order tickets, go to the Kelsey Theatre website, call 609-570-3333, or stop by the Kelsey Theatre Box Office. All tickets are $20 for this special event. The Kelsey Theatre is wheelchair accessible. More information about the Kelsey Theatre can be found at

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