2008-09 OVATIONS! Series announced by Edison

Since 1973, the Edison Theatre OVATIONS! Series has presented both new works and innovative interpretations of classical material by nationally and internationally renowned artists. The 2008-09 season, the Edison’s 36th, will feature more than a dozen dance, music and theatrical events — including several St. Louis and world premieres — designed to challenge, educate and inspire.

“Once again, the OVATIONS! Series explores new ways of seeing the fresh and the familiar,” says Charles E. Robin, executive director of Edison Theatre. “Favorites return for another adventure, and new friends are welcomed to the fold. With each offering, we invite audiences on the journey and encourage them to not only enjoy but to engage.”

The Ahn Trio returns to Edison in February to breathe new life into piano-trio standards.
The Ahn Trio returns to Edison in February to breathe new life into piano-trio standards.

The OVATIONS! Series will open Sept. 26 with Sweet Honey in the Rock. For more than three decades, this all-female Grammy Award-winning a cappella ensemble has celebrated the rich legacy of African-American musical traditions, capturing the sounds of spirituals, gospel, Blues, African chants and ancient lullabies.

The series continues Oct. 3 and 4 with two new productions by L.A. Theatre Works, the nation’s premiere radio theater company. Oct. 3, the company will present H.G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds,” adapted by Howard Koch. The following evening, Oct. 4, will feature a new production of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Lost World,” adapted by John de Lancie and Nat Segaloff.

The Trey McIntyre Project will bring its groundbreaking contemporary ballet to the Edison stage Oct. 10 and 11. Next up, Nov. 7 and 8, is the Luna Negra Dance Theatre in “There is a Time,” a restaging of Jose Limon’s biblically-inspired masterwork.

In January, Edison Theatre will sponsor a pair of special events. From Jan. 9-18, Edison will join forces with St. Louis’ own Metro Theater Company for an all-new production of “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Adapted by Christopher Sergel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Harper Lee, this all-ages show tells the story of growing up in a small Alabama town in 1935 as the trial of an African-American man turns a community upside down.

Then, Jan. 23 and 24, Academy Award-winner Olympia Dukakis will bring her acclaimed Broadway hit “Rose” to the Edison stage. Written by Martin Sherman, this play-length monologue paints an unforgettable portrait of an 80-year-old Jewish woman from the Ukraine, following her life from war-torn Warsaw and through the Holocaust to postwar Atlantic City and modern-day Miami Beach.

Two powerhouses of American theater, The Guthrie Theater and The Acting Company, will join forces Feb. 13 for a new production of William Shakespeare’s epic “King Henry V.” The next day, Feb. 14, the companies will present the world premiere of “The Spy,” a riveting adventure set during the American Revolution, adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher from the novel by James Fenimore Cooper.

San Francisco’s Joe Goode Performance Group, in collaboration with master puppeteer Basil Twist, will present “Wonderboy” Feb. 20 and 21, an unexpected tale centering on a peculiar superhero who is isolated by his uncanny ability to empathize with everyone. Feb. 27 and 28 find the Ahn Trio back on the Edison stage. These three sisters — cellist Maria, pianist Lucia and violinist Angella — breathe new life into the standard piano-trio repertoire with commissioned works by some of today’s most visionary composers.

The OVATIONS! season concludes March 27 and 28 with Diavolo, the high-wire Los Angeles dance company, in “Foreign Bodies.” Set to an orchestral composition of the same title by the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Esa-Pekka Salonen, this new work examines the meaning and experience of home, origin and family.

Meanwhile, the popular ovations! for young people series, which offers specially priced Saturday matinees for audiences of all ages, will open Jan. 24 with the extraordinary Michael Cooper in “Masked Marvels & Wondertales,” a breathtaking one-man-show that combines mime, visual art and outlandish stilt dancing. The series continues Feb. 28 with a special matinee performance by the Ahn Trio and concludes March 28 with Diavolo.

Tickets to OVATIONS! events are $32, $28 for seniors and Washington University faculty and staff; and $20 for students and children. Subscriptions are available at the basic level (three, four or five events at $28 per ticket) and at the premiere level (six or more events at $24 per ticket). Tickets to ovations! for young people events are $10 each. (Subscriptions are available at $6 per ticket.)

For more information, call 935-6543 or e-mail Edison@wustl.edu.