South San Francisco, CA October 8, 2021 Submitted by Jonathan White
San Francisco’s Landmark Musical Theatre (Jon Rosen, Artistic Director) is pleased to announce the full cast and creative team for the opening production of the Company’s upcoming in-person 2021-2022 season, the Tony Award®-winning audience favorite THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE. The production will run from October 9 – November 7, 2021 at the Children’s Creativity Museum Theater (221 4th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103). THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE will be directed by Jon Rosen, with choreography by Meredith Fox, and with music and vocal direction by Christopher Hewitt. Tickets range from $20 – $50 and are available now at LandmarkMusicals.com.
“Ever since I saw this show on Broadway, I hoped to get the opportunity to direct it,” said Director Jon Rosen. “SPELLING BEE is a force field of theatricality that champions eccentric young people dealing with the trials and tribulations of adolescence. With great humor, it addresses the challenges that almost every kid faces in feeling that they are just slightly different than everyone else. Most important, it leaves us with the understanding that winning ISN’T everything and that sometimes even the losers are winners. William Finn (who composed the FALSETTO trilogy and A NEW BRAIN) supplies a delightful score with amazing lyrics and Rachel Sheinkin’s book gives six adult actors the chance to re-engage with their inner youth!”
Landmark Musical Theatre’s production of THE 25th ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE will feature two different casts (the Alpha Cast and the Betta Cast) who will be performing at specific performances. The full schedule of performances for each cast is available at LandmarkMusicals.com.
The Alpha Cast will feature Elana Cowen as “Rona Lisa Peretti,” Edward Pieczenik as “Doug Panch,” William Rhea as “William Barfee,” Vanity Olaires as “Olive Ostrovsky,” Eriette Atanante as “Marcy Park,” Johann Santos as “Chip Tolentino,” Libby Oberlin as “Logainne SchwartzandGrubenierre,” John Charles Quimpo as “Leaf Coneybear,” Marla Cox as “Midge Mahoney” and Curtis Pollard as “Carl ‘Dad’ Grubenierre.”
The Betta Cast will feature Rebecca Fox as “Rona Lisa Peretti,” John-Thomas Hanson as “Doug Panch,” William Rhea as “William Barfee,” Bekah Broas as “Olive Ostrovsky,” Saira Grewal as “Marcy Park,” Jamari McGee as “Chip Tolentino,” Tosca Maltzman as “Logainne SchwartzandGrubenierre,” Alicia Hurtado as “Leaf Coneybear,” Jepoy Ramos as “Mitch Mahoney” and Curtis Pollard as “Carl ‘Dad’ Grubenierre.”
In addition to Mr. Rosen, Ms. Fox and Mr. Hewitt, the creative team will include Kathryn Gubler (lighting design) and Lish Lesh (sound design). Mr. Rosen designed the sets, based on the school gymnasium design created by Tony Award-winning designer Beowolf Boritt for the original Broadway production.
Winner of the Tony and the Drama Desk Awards for Best Book, THE 25th ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE, conceived by Rebecca Feldman, has charmed audiences across the country with its effortless wit and humor. Featuring a fast-paced, wildly funny, and touching book by Rachel Sheinkin and a truly fresh and vibrant score by William Finn (Composer of FALSETTOS), this bee is one unforgettable experience. An eclectic group of six mid-pubescents (all portrayed by adult actors) vie for the spelling championship of a lifetime. While candidly disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their home lives, the tweens spell their way through a series of (potentially made-up) words, hoping never to hear the soul-crushing, pout-inducing, life-unaffirming “ding” of the bell that signals a spelling mistake.
Six spellers enter… one speller leaves victorious! The losers get a hug and a juice box.
The production also includes a novelty not often seen in a Broadway musical, as four members of each night’s audience get a chance to shine when they are invited to the stage to compete as spellers during the first act of the show!
The show would be rated PG-13 for strong language and some sexual content (dealing with the “complications” of male puberty) and is recommended for youth 13 and over. To allow the show to be accessible to a wider audience, four matinee performances on October 23, 24, 30 and 31 will be performed with most of the language and sexual content adjusted to be acceptable for younger children aged 8 and above.
Landmark Musical Theatre’s 2021-2022 season will continue with Music Theatre International’s ALL TOGETHER NOW! A GLOBAL EVENT CELEBRATING LOCAL THEATRE (November 12 – 15, 2021), STEEL PIER (January 15 – February 19, 2022), RUTHLESS! THE MUSICAL (March 26 – April 30, 2022), and YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN (May 14 – June 19, 2022). Tickets for all subsequent 2021-2022 productions will be available for purchase on Landmark’s website starting Friday, October 1, 2021.
THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE will perform at the Children’s Creativity Museum Theater (221 4th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103, between Mission and Howard). All other productions in the 2021-22 season will perform at Landmark’s permanent new home, Theater 33 (533 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA 94012, between Mason and Powell).
Landmark Musical Theatre plans to follow all city, state and federal health mandates throughout the season to reduce risk and protect the health of both actors and audience. At the current time, audience members either need to provide proof of vaccination or a recent (within 72 hours) Covid-free test at the time of attending a performance, and all audience members must be masked indoors, especially while sitting in their seats unless they are drinking or eating. All regulations will be closely monitored, and policies will be updated as the situation with the virus evolves.
About Landmark Musical Theatre
Landmark Musical Theatre is entering its seventh season in 2021, following its enforced 18-month hiatus due to Covid-19 after closing its most recent production, URINETOWN, in early March 2020. Formed in the summer of 2015 after bringing its Santa Clara production of the satirical musical TOMFOOLERY (based on the hilarious words and music of Tom Lehrer) to the Eureka (now the Gateway) Theatre, Landmark has produced shows such as THE BOY FROM OZ (Bay area premiere), EVITA, HAIR (TBA winner, Best Choreography Tier 3), and THE DROWSY CHAPERONE at several San Francisco venues, including the Shelton Theater, the Exit Theatre, and the Great Star Theater. Landmark is thrilled to finally have “a place of its own” in Theater 33 at 533 Sutter Street between Mason and Powell.
FOR CALENDAR EDITORS:
WHAT: Landmark Musical Theatre presents THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE
WHEN: October 9 – November 7, 2021
WHERE: Children’s Creativity Museum Theater (221 4th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103)
RUNNING TIME: Approximately one hour and forty minutes with no intermission.
TICKETS: $20 – $50 and are available now at LandmarkMusicals.com.