Sections

Toe the Line: ‘A Chorus Line’ kicks off new season at Gallery Players

Hat trick: Dancers rehearse the demanding choreography for “A Chorus Line,” opening at Gallery Players in Park Slope on Sept. 8.
Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:

Get ready for a singular sensation, with every little step they take!

The Gallery Players will launch its 42nd season with a visit to Broadway, in the show biz musical “A Chorus Line,” opening on Sept. 8. The toe-tapping show, about a group of 17 dancers auditioning for eight roles in a Broadway musical, is beloved by musical theater people —and by this production’s director, who described himself as “a fanatic” for the show.

“It’s about people who are pursuing their dreams for the arts, and the sacrifices and the incredible dedication that takes. That’s why I love it, and so many theater people love it — it expresses what our lives are like,” said Tom Rowan.

The director and author literally wrote the book about the popular musical: “A Chorus Line FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About Broadway’s Singular Sensation.” He brings a wealth of knowledge the musical, which debuted Off-Broadway in 1975. Rowan says that despite its age, the musical’s content is still up-to-date.

“It really doesn’t feel dated at all, even 43 years later,” he said. “Dancers still really relate to it — it’s still what they go through at auditions, and it has a classic, timeless music to it. It still feels vital and current.”

Another factor that keeps it fresh is the complicated dance steps, which Rowan describes as “the backbone of the show.”

The story of “A Chorus Line” was built from interviews with Broadway dancers, as they discussed their childhoods, their auditions, and their love of dancing, and the choreography was created alongside those interviews, said Rowan, often before the music was written.

This production has a secret weapon to help those steps come to life: choreographer Eddie Gutierrez, who studied with many of the original cast members and producers. His insight has been invaluable for the actors, said Rowan.

“He brings so much knowledge of the steps, but also the original artistic impulse behind it, so they’re getting a really authentic introduction to what the dance in the show is all about,” said Rowan.

Bringing a big Broadway shows into the intimate confines of the Gallery Players has its challenges, said Rowan — especially for Gutierrez, who must fit 19 people doing a step, kick, kick, leap onto an Off-Off-Broadway stage — but it will heighten the experience for the audience.

“A big part of the appeal of the show is that the audience feels like they’re invisible spectators at a Broadway audition, and in a space like this, where you’re so close to the action, you can really see the actors sweat,” he said. “It’s a much more intense experience. You really feel like you’re in the room in a really personal way.”

“A Chorus Line” at Gallery Players [199 14th St. between Fourth and Fifth avenues in Park Slope, (212) 352–3101 www.galleryplayers.com]. Sept. 8–30. Thu–Sat at 8 pm; Sun at 3 pm. $30 ($20 seniors and kids).

Reach arts editor Bill Roundy at broundy@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–4507.
Posted 12:00 am, August 30, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not BrooklynPaper.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to BrooklynPaper.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter:

Optional: