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By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | July 22, 2005
Top Hat Theater Productions, the new theater company launched by Jeffrey Glenn Hitaffer and Jamie Hanna, is in final rehearsals of Jesus Christ Superstar, scheduled to open Aug. 5 at Chesapeake Arts Center's 904-seat Main Theatre in Brooklyn Park. At a rehearsal last week, Hitaffer and co-director Hanna seemed to have everything under control. Absent was the chaos usually encountered at soon-to-open productions. Reflecting on how the company's name was chosen, Hitaffer said, "It's a name to signify the class image that we wish to project by creating excellence in every aspect of theater.
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NEWS
November 18, 2007
FILM JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR -- 7:30 p.m. tomorrow. Van Bokkelen Hall auditorium, Towson University, 8000 York Road. Free. 410-704-3755 or towson.edu/emf Norman Jewison's adaptation of the rock opera-turned-Broadway play divided audiences on its release in 1973. Some praised it as an adaptation faithful to both the substance and spirit of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's original work, which strove to make contemporary heroes of Jesus and his apostles (save for Judas). Some protested the film, insisting that its portrayal of a Jesus who was as much man as God bordered on the sacrilegious.
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NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 24, 2005
Forming a new theater company in Anne Arundel County might seem somewhat risky considering the number of entrenched companies. Colonial Players, Pasadena Theatre Company, Merely Players, Second Star and Bay Theatre are all vying for the same general audience. But that risk hasn't deterred 32-year-old song-and-dance man Jeffrey Glenn Hitaffer from forming Top Hat Theater Productions, which is in rehearsals at Chesapeake Arts Center with Jesus Christ Superstar, scheduled to open Aug. 5 and run weekends through Aug. 14 at the center's 900-seat main theater.
NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | August 12, 2005
Top Hat Theater Productions - the new company founded by Jeffrey Glenn Hitaffer and Jamie Hanna - is off to a spectacular start with its debut production of Jesus Christ Superstar at Chesapeake Arts Center's 900-seat Main Theater. Hitaffer and Hanna's company goals are to create musical productions filled with great singing, dancing and acting and to feature imaginative staging with precision lighting and sound. They met all of their goals in this contemporary Superstar, which boasts some of the most imaginative staging seen at Chesapeake Arts Center, where it has usually involved placing sets on each side of the stage for predictable and prosaic scene changes.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Mike Giuliano and Mike Giuliano,Special to the Sun | July 14, 1995
If the rock opera format of Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Jesus Christ Superstar" seemed a bit controversial back in 1971, watching the show now is more of a reassuring nostalgia trip.As the current revival at Towson State University makes clear, "Superstar" still rocks. And, for better or worse, it still has tunes you can't get out of your head.This production aims to put its own stamp on the material by making Judas (Shawn Doyle) a somewhat moodier and more introspective fellow than is usually the case in this oft-produced play.
FEATURES
By Mary Carole McCauley and Mary Carole McCauley,SUN ARTS WRITER | April 10, 2003
Three decades after Jesus Christ Superstar first became a hit, it's striking how shrewd and savvy the Tim Rice/Andrew Lloyd Webber interpretation of the New Testament remains. Despite some unavoidably dated dialogue, the 1971 version of the betrayal and execution of the man thought by Christians to be the son of God is alternately cheeky and affecting. The show wrestles with such issues as mob psychology, the seductive hazards of celebrity and free will. Rice, who wrote the lyrics, imbued the figures cast by history as the villains of this story - Judas and Pontius Pilate - with a complex humanity.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck | January 30, 1994
'A Thurber Carnival' begins three-weekend runLiberty Showcase Theatre's production of "A Thurber Carnival" -- a collection of humorous sketches by James Thurber -- begins a three-weekend run at Winand Elementary School, 8301 Scotts Level Road, on Friday.Under the direction of Allan Dale 3rd, the cast of 12 features Roman Gusso and Barbara Franklin in the favorite Thurber roles of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Mitty. Curtain times are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., with matinees next Sunday and Feb. 13 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $8. For further information call (410)
ENTERTAINMENT
By Lori Sears | December 16, 2004
COMING UP Always wanted to learn about Kwanzaa? The Enoch Pratt Free Library offers a celebration of Kwanzaa at various branches with Charles Dugger explaining the principles and traditions. The event takes place at the Clifton Branch (2001 N. Wolfe St., 410-396-0984) 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. It moves to the Broadway Branch (301 N. Broadway, 410-396-0970) 4 p.m. Dec. 23. NEXT WEEK IN LIVE Rising music star Mario talks about his Baltimore roots ... Chatting with one of the stars of Jesus Christ Superstar ... NOW OR NEVER The kids are ready for Christmas.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,SUN STAFF | December 23, 2004
About a year and a half ago, Eric Kunze got the call. He was in the middle of opening his fourth spa and patio store in Orange County, Calif., when the producers of the new tour of Jesus Christ Superstar wanted him to fill in as the lead for three weeks. He agreed, flew out to Baltimore, rehearsed for three days and took the stage at the Mechanic Theatre. He had no idea that a year and a half later he would still be on tour with the show, which plays the Hippodrome Theatre at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center Wednesday through Jan. 2. He sold his retail stores six months ago so he could focus on acting until the show runs its course.
FEATURES
By Linell Smith and Linell Smith,Staff Writer | June 17, 1992
Due to its popularity, "Mining the Museum," Maryland Historical Society's trailblazing exhibition about African-American and American Indian experiences in Maryland, has been extended through Feb. 8, 1993. In this installation, New York artist Fred Wilson uses objects from the historical society's permanent collection to investigate the way minorities have been depicted in the state's art and artifacts. By combining slave shackles with fine silver, placing Victorian chairs around a whipping post and creating other unusual groupings of objects, Mr. Wilson leads visitors to reconsider their perceptions of museums as well as art. The show is a collaboration between the Historical Society and The Contemporary, a young Baltimore-based art museum that has programmed exhibitions in such temporary spaces as an abandoned warehouse and a bus garage.
NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | July 22, 2005
Top Hat Theater Productions, the new theater company launched by Jeffrey Glenn Hitaffer and Jamie Hanna, is in final rehearsals of Jesus Christ Superstar, scheduled to open Aug. 5 at Chesapeake Arts Center's 904-seat Main Theatre in Brooklyn Park. At a rehearsal last week, Hitaffer and co-director Hanna seemed to have everything under control. Absent was the chaos usually encountered at soon-to-open productions. Reflecting on how the company's name was chosen, Hitaffer said, "It's a name to signify the class image that we wish to project by creating excellence in every aspect of theater.
NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 24, 2005
Forming a new theater company in Anne Arundel County might seem somewhat risky considering the number of entrenched companies. Colonial Players, Pasadena Theatre Company, Merely Players, Second Star and Bay Theatre are all vying for the same general audience. But that risk hasn't deterred 32-year-old song-and-dance man Jeffrey Glenn Hitaffer from forming Top Hat Theater Productions, which is in rehearsals at Chesapeake Arts Center with Jesus Christ Superstar, scheduled to open Aug. 5 and run weekends through Aug. 14 at the center's 900-seat main theater.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,SUN STAFF | December 23, 2004
About a year and a half ago, Eric Kunze got the call. He was in the middle of opening his fourth spa and patio store in Orange County, Calif., when the producers of the new tour of Jesus Christ Superstar wanted him to fill in as the lead for three weeks. He agreed, flew out to Baltimore, rehearsed for three days and took the stage at the Mechanic Theatre. He had no idea that a year and a half later he would still be on tour with the show, which plays the Hippodrome Theatre at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center Wednesday through Jan. 2. He sold his retail stores six months ago so he could focus on acting until the show runs its course.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Lori Sears | December 16, 2004
COMING UP Always wanted to learn about Kwanzaa? The Enoch Pratt Free Library offers a celebration of Kwanzaa at various branches with Charles Dugger explaining the principles and traditions. The event takes place at the Clifton Branch (2001 N. Wolfe St., 410-396-0984) 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. It moves to the Broadway Branch (301 N. Broadway, 410-396-0970) 4 p.m. Dec. 23. NEXT WEEK IN LIVE Rising music star Mario talks about his Baltimore roots ... Chatting with one of the stars of Jesus Christ Superstar ... NOW OR NEVER The kids are ready for Christmas.
FEATURES
By Mary Carole McCauley and Mary Carole McCauley,SUN ARTS WRITER | April 10, 2003
Three decades after Jesus Christ Superstar first became a hit, it's striking how shrewd and savvy the Tim Rice/Andrew Lloyd Webber interpretation of the New Testament remains. Despite some unavoidably dated dialogue, the 1971 version of the betrayal and execution of the man thought by Christians to be the son of God is alternately cheeky and affecting. The show wrestles with such issues as mob psychology, the seductive hazards of celebrity and free will. Rice, who wrote the lyrics, imbued the figures cast by history as the villains of this story - Judas and Pontius Pilate - with a complex humanity.
FEATURES
By John Woestendiek and John Woestendiek,SUN STAFF | December 26, 2002
Good rock opera isn't just born. It evolves. First comes a seed of inspiration, possibly triggered by mind-altering substances. Then it sprouts into a concept (something plausible, like a deaf, dumb and blind pinball champion). Next it is cultivated - the story line plotted, the characters developed and the songs written. After that, it lays around on a shelf. When it does come up occasionally, much in the way last night's anchovies do, its creators make a face, wonder "what were we thinking?"
NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | May 18, 2000
In Annapolis, summer begins at Commissioning Week, with commencement at the Naval Academy on Wednesday, and with the season opening two days later of the Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre. Appropriate for this colonial town, ASGT's 200-seat courtyard theater is on the site of the city's old blacksmith shop at 143 Compromise St., across from City Dock. On weekends from May 26 through Labor Day, ASGT will offer a theatrical garden of delights in celebration of its 35th season, opening with Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Jesus Christ Superstar" through June 24. William Shakespeare's "The Comedy of Errors" is scheduled from June 30 through July 29, and the season ends with the 1959 musical "Once Upon A Mattress," by Mary Rodgers, from Aug. 4 through Sept.
FEATURES
By Mike Giuliano and Mike Giuliano,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | February 1, 1996
Take away the spectacular sets of Andrew Lloyd Webber's musicals and you're still left with more than enough music to fill the stage.The 37 musical numbers packed into the Webber retrospective "Music of the Night" bombard the audience with so much emotion and volume that the Lyric Opera House is the site to visit for the worldwide Webber network of fans.Be advised, though, that the concert-version staging translates into "Cats" who wear evening clothes as they go through their slinky feline motions.
NEWS
By Mary Johnson and Mary Johnson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | May 18, 2000
In Annapolis, summer begins at Commissioning Week, with commencement at the Naval Academy on Wednesday, and with the season opening two days later of the Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre. Appropriate for this colonial town, ASGT's 200-seat courtyard theater is on the site of the city's old blacksmith shop at 143 Compromise St., across from City Dock. On weekends from May 26 through Labor Day, ASGT will offer a theatrical garden of delights in celebration of its 35th season, opening with Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Jesus Christ Superstar" through June 24. William Shakespeare's "The Comedy of Errors" is scheduled from June 30 through July 29, and the season ends with the 1959 musical "Once Upon A Mattress," by Mary Rodgers, from Aug. 4 through Sept.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,SUN THEATER CRITIC | November 23, 1998
"A Labor of Love," the annual fund-raiser for the Howard County AIDS Alliance Emergency Fund, will celebrate its 10th anniversary a week from tonight with a benefit concert performance of "Jesus Christ Superstar."The cast, which includes a number of Broadway and Hollywood actors -- many with local ties -- will be headed by Odenton-based Larry Friedman, who understudied and played the title role in the Ted Neeley international tour of this Andrew Lloyd Webber-Tim Rice musical. Michelle Rios, who plays Mary Magdalen, is a Marylander who made her Broadway debut in Paul Simon's "The Capeman" and is currently appearing in the Broadway revival of "The Sound of Music."
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