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Napa Valley College Performing Arts Announces Spring 2022 In-Person Performances

Napa Valley College (NVC) Performing Arts will present a season of in-person performances this spring including “Musicals Go To the Movies,” “Romeo and Juliet,” ¡Viva Mariachi!, as well as college chorale and jazz ensemble concerts.

“We are back in person and stronger than ever,” says NVC Performing Arts professor and artistic director Jennifer King. “Throughout this challenging time for the arts, NVC Performing Arts seized the opportunity for creative expression through technology and partnerships.                                                    

On Saturday, March 26, at 7 p.m., Napa Valley College Performing Arts Department of Music and Festival Napa Valley join together to present “Musicals Go To the Movies,” a musical theater revue starring acclaimed Broadway performer Ryan Silverman in performance alongside Napa Valley College music students.

Silverman has earned multiple Drama Desk nominations, including nomination for Best Actor for the role of Terry Connor in “Side Show” on Broadway, and has starred as Raoul in “The Phantom of the Opera” and as Billy Flynn in “Chicago.” With noted Broadway choreographer Kim Craven, Silverman is Festival Napa Valley’s featured artist/educator-in-residence this spring, working with NVC students in a week-long intensive workshop as part of a musical theater class led by Napa Valley College Coordinator of Music and Director of Vocal Studies Dr. Christina Howell.

The performance features movie musical favorites such as: “Moon River” from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “Ya’ got Trouble” from “The Music Man,” “Everybody Rejoice” from “The Wiz,” “Come Alive” from “The Greatest Showman,” “Your Song” from “Moulin Rouge,” “Gee, Officer Krupke” from “West Side Story” and “I’ve Got Rhythm” from “An American in Paris.” Ticket prices range from free to students with ID to $15 for adults.

On Saturday, April 9, Napa Valley College will present the second annual ¡Viva Mariachi! festival with an afternoon matinee and an evening performance, both featuring the same three award-winning Mariachi ensembles. With the tremendous success of the inaugural festival in 2019, the concerts celebrate a return to promoting the rich heritage and traditions of Mexico through Mariachi music. All tickets are $10.

For two weekends in April, the NVC Theater Arts department and Shakespeare Napa Valley will present “Romeo and Juliet,” directed by Jennifer King and Olivia Cowell. This re-imagined take on one of Shakespeare’s most beloved plays recalls moments from the virtual production King staged in 2020. “We were forced to shelter in place, and Napa Valley College presented one of the first Zoom theater productions that summer, a live digital version of ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ in partnership with the Streaming Theatre.” said King. “We wanted to acknowledge where we have been and how it has influenced the way we create art now, almost two years later as we return to the stage.”

Co-director Cowell explains that this production differs from previous stagings, “Our in-person performances include innovative set elements and the use of mixed media such as projections and live cameras manipulated onstage by actors. These elements amplify the characters’ plight of re-examining choices.”

“Romeo and Juliet”will feature a cast of NVC students and alumni guest artists on April 22, 23, 29 and 30 at 7 p.m., and April 24 and May 1 at 2 p.m. Tickets are pay-what-you-can.

In May, the NVC music department presents the final music events of the spring, both at pay-what-you-can admission pricing.

The Napa Valley Jazz Ensemble will hold a live performance on Friday, May 20 at 7 p.m. Led by instructor and Jazz Ensemble director Peter Estrabrook, NVC students and community members will perform together to create a mid-sized ensemble focusing on music by Duke Ellington and others with an emphasis on a variety of styles within the jazz idiom including swing, jazz/rock, funk and Latin jazz.

Rounding out the season on Sunday, May 22, the Napa Valley College Chorale, conducted by Dr. Howell, plans an exciting and uplifting program of songs focusing on emergence together. “After so long without being able to sing together, we will celebrate singing as a community,” explains Howell. “As we begin to emerge from a pandemic in which singing was considered a dangerous activity, we will bloom into a new world with ‘Spring Overall,’ written by Napa Valley College music instructor Mazdak Khamda and based on a poem by Rumi.” Audiences can expect to hear styles ranging from traditional classical works to pieces written by pop singer, Annie Lennox, and musical theater composer, Jason Robert Brown.

All performances will be held on the main stage of Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center. Ticketing Information can be found at https://performingartsnapavalley.org/.

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