Vicky Bussert will direct Firebrand Theatre's inaugural production in the 2017-2018 season, Lizzie, a rock musical based on the true-life story of accused axe-murderess Lizzie Borden (photo courtesy of FIrebrand Theatre).
Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts
Firebrand Theatre, a new Chicago-based musical theater company whose mission is to employ and empower women by expanding opportunities on and off the stage, has announced its inaugural season, featuring two fully-produced musicals. Firebrand’s 2017-18 season kicks off this fall with the Chicago premiere of Lizzie, a rock musical based on the true-life story of accused axe-murderess Lizzie Borden. Directed by Victoria Bussert with music direction by Andra Velis-Simon, Lizzie features music and lyrics by Steven Cheslik-deMayer, Alan Stevens Hewitt and Tim Maner and book by Tim Maner.
The season concludes in spring 2018 with the musical comedy 9 TO 5 The Musical, based on the hit movie of the same name about three working women fighting for equality in a sexist workplace. With music and lyrics by Grammy Award-winner Dolly Parton and a book by Patricia Resnick, 9 TO 5 The Musical will be directed by Firebrand’s artistic director, Harmony France with music direction by Andra Velis-Simon. The cast includes Sharriese Hamilton as Doralee, the role originated by Dolly Parton in the 1980 film.
Firebrand’s 2017-18 Season will be presented at The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Season subscriptions are currently available at firebrandtheatre.org.
Firebrand has also announced its season kick-off benefit: Nothin’ Like a Dame: A Celebration of Women in Musical Theatre. The benefit takes place on Monday, February 27, 2017 at 7 p.m at The Mercury Theatre, 3745 N. Southport Ave. in Chicago. Twenty-eight of Chicago’s fiercest divas will take the stage for one-night-only to honor female composers and lyricists, pay tribute to iconic female roles and give audiences a sneak preview of Firebrand’s upcoming inaugural season.
Tickets for Nothin’ Like a Dame: A Celebration of Women in Musical Theatre, priced at $40 (regular admission) and $75 (VIP – premium seats, 2 drink tickets, gift), are currently available at firebrandtheatre.org.