A SEASON OF MIRACLES
WHEN: November 21 through December 2014
WHERE: Paper Mill Playhouse (Millburn, NJ) on December 3 & 12, Queens College (Flushing, NY) on December 4, College of Staten Island (Staten Island, NY) December 8, 9 & 10, Queensborough College (Bayside, NY), Publick Playhouse (Hyattsville, MD) December 16 and Goucher College (Towson, MD) on December 17 and 18.
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A SEASON OF MIRACLES is a multi-cultural collection of holiday tales that celebrate Christmas, Kwanzaa and Chanukah. Stories within this delightful musical include O. Henry’s The Gift of the Magi; an original scene in Nigeria entitled The Kwanzaa Kite; a story based on the folklore of Chelm called The Chanukah Miracle; and E.T.A. Hoffmann’s The Nutcracker. Crafted and set to music with the timeless tone of each classic piece, this magical production warms the hearts—and perhaps changes the perspectives – of family audiences as they reflect on the true meaning and spirit of the holidays.
“As for miracles?” noted Ruth Fost, Pushcart co-founder and playwright for the production, “They are within us all and at the heart of each story. They are the gifts of love, kindness, caring and sharing.”
Pushcart artistic director Paul Whelihan directs the remounted production, based on original staging and choreography by Fost and Susie Paplow. Whelihan, also an actor, has directed the majority of Pushcart’s productions. He has performed, directed and stage-managed off-Broadway (47th Street Theater, 59 East 59 Theatres, NY Fringe Festival) and regionally (Royal Poincianna Playhouse, Broward Center for the Arts, Centenary Stage, The Growing Stage, Luna Stage Company, Forum Cultural Arts Center, Quillo Arts Center, Dreamcatcher Rep) in musicals, dramas, original works and locally produced television, film and web series projects. As a teaching artist, Paul has directed productions for Franklin Middle School, Rockaway Valley School, Northeast Elementary School, Breezy Point Summer Theatre Program and the YMCA of Wayne.
A SEASON OF MIRACLES cast features Melanie Beck, Melissa Cox, JD Lynch and Anthony M. Stokes. Ms. Beck received her BFA from Ithaca College. Most recently, she played Izzy in Cloned! The Musical which premiered during this summer's New York Musical Theatre Festival and won the coveted "Best of Fest" award. Other credits include the Off-Broadway production and tour of TheatreWorks USA's Skippyjon Jones, Spelling Bee at the Hangar Theatre, and the regional premier of Grace at Lake Dillon Theatre in CO.
Melissa Cox is a recent graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University where she studied Musical Theater and received a Masters in Corporate and Organizational Communication. She performed the role of Beth in LITTLE WOMEN in Maplewood NJ and has been seen as Martha in SPRING AWAKENING and Sister in DAMN YANKEES. JD Lynch is a graduate of DeSales University with a degree in theatre/communications. He has performed in more than 80 different shows Off Broadway and throughout the country. SEASON OF MIRACLES marks his 9th production for Pushcart Players. Anthony Michael Stokes recently returned from South Korea where he worked as a teaching artist. A trained cellist and puppeteer, his recent credits include Hondo/Walt in Aisle Six (2013NYFringe), the first national tour of CLIFFORD, originating the roles of Charley/Mr. Partland, Alcestis (American Thymele Theatre), Admetus' Servant, Romeo and Bernadette/Romeo.
Larry Hochman musically arranges A Season of Miracles. Hochman won both the Tony and the Drama Desk awards for best orchestrations for The Book of Mormon. He received Tony nominations for The Scottsboro Boys, Monty Python's Spamalot, (Hochman also received Drama Desk nominations for both), Fiddler on the Roof (2004 revival) and A Class Act.
Pushcart Players has traveled over 2 million miles nationally and abroad since 1974 to serve more than 8 million children and their families with meaningful theatre. From the White House to the little red schoolhouse, this dynamic company has been nominated for an Emmy, and has received numerous state and private awards for excellence and innovation. A cast of professional Equity actors and stage managers come with complete scenery, lighting and sound systems, making every performance adaptable to any location.