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Home / Neighborhood / San Gabriel Valley / Pasadena Independent / ‘Flower Drum Song’ This Weekend October 1 – 2

‘Flower Drum Song’ This Weekend October 1 – 2

by Terry Miller
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Key cast members rehearse at the San Gabriel Valley Mission Theatre - Photos by Terry Miller

FLOWER DRUM SONG Sat. and Sun Oct 1, 2

One of The San Gabriel Valley’s best kept secret is the The San Gabriel Valley Music Theatre. The historic theatre is now getting ready for Flower Drum Song with the award winning creative team which brought last year’s smash hit Miss Saigon to the San Gabriel Valley. Perhaps one of the most beloved musicals of all time, Rodgers and Hammersteins’ Flower Drum Song, will be performed October 1 and 2, 2011. Taking place at the Historic 1,400 seat San Gabriel Mission Playhouse, this opulent production is directed by Ray A. Rochelle, and features a stellar cast of performers accompanied by a live twenty-piece orchestra conducted by Maestro Richard Allen.

Producer Bobby Hundley says, “Flower Drum Song remains one of the most popular musicals of all time not only because of the fantastic score and terrific characters but it was such a progressive work for its day. In a fitting tribute, SGVMT will be honoring Hollywood Screen Legend Nancy Kwan at a dinner and performance in her honor for paving the way for Asian artists into the mainstream Hollywood and Broadway limelight. We’re honored to be associated with Ms. Kwan and have the chance to bring this beautiful and funny masterpiece to our community.”

Nancy Kwan was the original Linda Low in the film version of Flower Drum Song and recently released a powerful, feature documentary about her life entitled: Ka Shen’s Journey. SGVMT will be hosting a VIP dinner and performance package; hosted by restaurant Mission 261 in conjunction with the October 1 and 2 Flower Drum Song performances.

Flower Drum Song features such hits as “I Enjoy Being A Girl” “A Hundred Million Miracles” “Grant Avenue” and “Love Look Away” while telling the tale of Mei-Li, who flees Mao’s communist China after the murder of her father and finds herself in San Francisco’s Chinatown. This naïve young refugee is befriended by Wang, who is struggling to keep the Chinese opera tradition alive despite his son’s determination to turn the old opera house into a swingin’ Western-style nightclub. A unique blending of American razz-ma-tazz and stylized Chinese opera traditions creates a beautifully theatrical tapestry. The wonderful score, by turns lushly romantic and showbiz-brassy, retains all of its luster in this lovely new version of an American classic. Mei-Li’s gradual assimilation is informed by her realization that the old and new can coexist when there is respect for both.

For more information regarding tickets to this fantastic Broadway musical or our special Gala Dinner, please call 626-282-1440 or visit us online at: www.sgvmusictheatre.org. Tickets start as low as $20. This production is generously sponsored by the Hilton San Gabriel and Wells Fargo.

The San Gabriel Valley Music Theatre was founded in 2005 with the goal of bringing Broadway musicals back to the gorgeous historic, San Gabriel Mission Playhouse. Our mission is to preserve and present the unique American art form of musical theatre with the motto: “Building Our Community One Musical At A Time”. SGVMT produces three to five productions a year ranging from Broadway Classics including: Miss Saigon, Guys and Dolls, The King and I, The Sound of Music and Forever Plaid; as well as many one night concerts and Broadway revues and Big Band Shows. SGVMT just produced the celebrity show Swingin and Croonin which starred Louis Prima Jr, Ricci Martin and Phil Crosby Jr, the famous sons of Louis Prima, Dean Martin and Bing Crosby’s grandson. In 2012, SGVMT will be presenting “An Evening of Andrew Lloyd Webber” followed by another classic Broadway musical.

Completed in 1927, and modeled after the Mission San Antonio de Padua, the San Gabriel Mission Playhouse was built by poet, Los Angeles Times columnist, and Democratic Congressman from California, John Steven McGroarty, with the sole purpose of having a large stage to present his epic “Mission Play”. Today, the San Gabriel Mission Playhouse promotes the development of an artistic program that celebrates the vibrancy of our diverse community by encouraging access to artists, producers and audiences. Located in the heart of a historic neighborhood, we embrace our role as a focal point for the arts, for the people of the City of San Gabriel and far beyond.
CAST LIST “Flower Drum Song”

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