Evanston, IL – As the bells of Notre Dame’s cathedral sound in 15th-century Paris, Quasimodo–a captive bell-ringer–escaped his captor to join the Feast of Fools, and is rejected by every reveler except one.
A lushly-scored retelling of Victor Hugo’s epic story of love and acceptance, by the creators of WICKED and ALADDIN, with songs from the Disney movie. (See all production details below.)
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME is directed by Music Theater Works artistic director Rudy Hogenmiller, conducted by Roger L. Bingaman and choreographed by Clayton Cross.
The cast includes Billy Dawson (Quasimodo), Anna Marie Abbate (Esmeralda), Erik Dohner (Phoebus), Cary Lovett (Clopin), and Kent Joseph (Frollo).
The design/production team is kClare Mckellaston (costume coordinator), Andrew H. Meyers (lighting), Robert Hornbostel (sound), Madeline M. Scott (stage manager), Alice Salazar (hair and make-up), Jamie Karas (properties), and Jim Davis (production manager).
This production is sponsored by The Paul’s Foundation, with additional support from the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation. The opening night reception is sponsored by The Barn, Evanston. Season sponsor is Joyce Ruth Saxon.
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME is Music Theater Works’ second production of 2019. The season will continue with LERNER AND LOEWE’S GREATEST HITS (October 4-13) and JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT (December 21-31).
Discounted season ticket packages are still available.
Ticket prices for THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME begin at $34. Ages 25 and younger are half price (recommended for 8 and older). To order tickets, or for more information, call the Music Theater Works box office at (847) 920-5360 or order online 24 hours a day at www.MusicTheaterWorks.com.
Director/Music Director/Choreographer Biographies
RUDY HOGENMILLER (Director), artistic director of Music Theater Works, has directed or directed and choreographed many productions for the company including HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING, ANYTHING GOES, INTO THE WOODS, THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, PETER PAN, DUKE ELLINGTON’S GREATEST HITS, GYPSY, CANDIDE, DIE FLEDERMAUS, LET ME ENTERTAIN YOU: JULE STYNE’S GREATEST HITS, MAME, MY FAIR LADY, GUYS AND DOLLS, SOUTH PACIFIC, THE FANTASTICKS, THE MERRY WIDOW, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, H.M.S. PINAFORE, OLIVER!, MAN OF LA MANCHA, CAMELOT, BRIGADOON, HELLO, DOLLY!, THE YEOMEN OF THE GUARD, KISS ME, KATE, SOUTH PACIFIC, THE MIKADO, and THE SOUND OF MUSIC. Hogenmiller was seen on the Music Theater Works stage in 2014 as Mr. Applegate in DAMN YANKEES, and as the Emcee in CABARET in 2013. He has directed and choreographed for many other companies, including Northlight Theatre, Chamber Opera Chicago, Pegasus Players, Theatre at the Center and Marriott Theatre. He has been recognized with six Joseph Jefferson Awards and 17 nominations for best direction and choreography in Chicago, and has been a member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers for more than 35 years.
ROGER L. BINGAMAN (Music Director and Conductor) made his first appearance on the Music Theater Works podium in 1997, conducting THE MERRY WIDOW. Since then he has conducted many productions, including HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING, ANYTHING GOES, INTO THE WOODS, PETER PAN, GYPSY, CANDIDE, DIE FLEDERMAUS, MAME, MY FAIR LADY, SOUTH PACIFIC, THE FANTASTICKS, CABARET, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, H.M.S. PINAFORE, OLIVER!, CAMELOT, THE STUDENT PRINCE, BRIGADOON, HELLO, DOLLY! CAROUSEL, and THE YEOMEN OF THE GUARD, as well as THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, THE MUSIC MAN, IOLANTHE, GIGI, OKLAHOMA!, BITTER SWEET, KISS ME, KATE, 110 IN THE SHADE, NO WAY TO TREAT A LADY, and BEAUTIFUL HELEN OF TROY. Bingaman has been director of the apprentice program and chorus master for the Sarasota Opera since 1998.
CLAYTON CROSS (Choreographer) choreographed HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING, ANYTHING GOES, INTO THE WOODS, THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, PETER PAN, GYPSY, CANDIDE, MAME, MY FAIR LADY, and GUYS AND DOLLS at Music Theater Works, where he also played the Mute in THE FANTASTICKS and was a featured dancer in DAMN YANKEES. Cross served for five years as artistic advisor, board member and choreographer for Renegade Dance Architects, and continues to consult and contribute choreography to the Capitol One Bowl’s ALL AMERICAN HALFTIME SHOW. He is a master teacher for M.A. Dance, a Texas-based traveling convention circuit, where he has worked and judged for the past 18 years. Throughout his 20-year career as a dancer, Cross has worked with Robert Battle, Fernando Bujones, Frank Chaves, Paul Taylor, and Ann Reinking. He was featured in EVERY DANCER HAS A STORY, a PBS special about the River North Chicago Dance Company, where he was a company member for nine seasons and toured nationally and internationally. Originally from Midland, Texas, Cross received his early training from La Petite Dance Company, Coleman Academy, and the Midland Community Theatre. He holds a BFA in ballet and modern dance from Texas Christian University.
BILLY DAWSON (Quasimodo) returns to Music Theater Works where he appeared in HOW TO SUCCEED, CANDIDE, THE FANTASTICKS, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, THE MERRY WIDOW, and DAMN YANKEES. Other Chicago area credits include 110 IN THE SHADE (BoHo Theatre), WOZZECK, TOSCA (Lyric Opera), and New Faces 1964 (Porchlight Music Theatre). Regional credits include CABARET, JEKYLL & HYDE, A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, A NEW BRAIN, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, THE LITTLE MERMAID, ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, and THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA. Billy is represented by Big Mouth Talent. @dawsonbilly
ANNA MARIE ABBATE (Esmeralda) marks her fourth production with Music Theater Works, where she was seen in PETER PAN (Tiger Lily), ANYTHING GOES (dance captain/ Ensemble) and HOW TO SUCCEED (dance captain/ensemble). Favorite Chicago credits include CHICAGO (Roxie Hart). FIDDLER ON THE ROOF (Hodel), and GUYS AND DOLLS(Hot Box girl). She is a former back up dancer for Chicago hip hop artist Vic Mensa (2016 Lollapalooza performer). She is a graduate of Millikin University and holds a B.A. in theater and dance. She will return to Music Theater Works later this season in JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT.
ERIK DOHNER (Phoebus) has appeared with Music Theater Works in MY FAIR LADY, DIE FLEDERMAUS, CANDIDE, and INTO THE WOODS. Recent credits include A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORM (Metropolis Performing Arts Centre), THE DOCTORS DILEMMA (ShawChicago), GRAND HOTEL (Kokandy Productions), EVITA (Timberlake Playhouse), THE MOST HAPPY FELLA (Theo Ubique), and HELLO DOLLY!, TITANIC, and WEST SIDE STORY (College Light Opera Company).
CARY LOVETT (Clopin) returns to Music Theater Works, where he was seen in THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE (Samuel), PETER PAN (Smee), CANDIDE (Vanderdendur), MY FAIR LADY (Alfred P. Doolittle 2017 and 2009), GUYS AND DOLLS (Nicely-Nicely Johnson), OLIVER! (Mr. Bumble), and MAN OF LA MANCHA (Sancho Panza). During the past 30 years Lovett has moved from male ingénue (Lt. Cable in SOUTH PACIFIC at Drury Lane Evergreen Park) to leading man (Jean Valjean understudy in LES MISERABLES on the third national tour) into the wonderful grab bag of character roles. He has performed with the Grant Park Symphony Chorus and the acclaimed vocal ensemble Chicago a cappella, and can be heard singing throughout the Chicago area as a cantor at numerous churches.
KENT JOSEPH (Dom Claude Frollo) returns to Music Theatre Works after appearing earlier this season in HOW TO SUCCEED. Favorite roles include God in CHILDREN OF EDEN (Stahl Family Theater), Scrooge in A CHRISTMAS CAROL (Quest Theatre), Fagin in OLIVER and Horton in SEUSSICAL (Footlighters Theater), Chief Bromden In ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST (Gift Theater), and Boris Kolenkhov in YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU (Oak Park Festival Theater). Kent will be seen in the soon-to-be released film THE GIRLS OF SUMMER, and the Shakespeare-based web series LIKE WHAT YOU LIKE.
Music Theater Works is a resident professional not-for-profit theater in Evanston, founded in 1980. The company’s mission is to produce and present musical theater from a variety of world traditions. Maximum scholarship is employed to preserve the original vocal and orchestral material as well as the spirit of the original text whenever possible. Audiences know that at Music Theater Works they will experience repertoire often unavailable on the stages of commercial theaters and opera houses, in modern productions with professional artists and full orchestra.
Music Theater Works’ mission is to produce and present musical theater from a variety of world traditions, to engage the community through educational and outreach programs, and to train artists in musical theater.
Music Theater Works
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME
Music by Alan Menken
Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz
Book by Peter Parnell
Directed by Rudy Hogenmiller
Choreographed by Clayton Cross
Conducted by Roger L. Bingaman
Based on the Victor Hugo novel and songs from the Disney film
The Professional Premiere in Chicago, IL
With full orchestra
With a cast of over 40
Press Opening: Saturday, August 17, 2019, at 8 pm
Sunday, August 18, at 2 pm
Wednesday, August 22, at 2 pm
Friday, August 23, at 8 pm
Saturday, August 24, at 8 pm
Sunday, August 25, at 2 pm
600 Emerson Street, Evanston, IL
Tickets start at $34
Ages 25 and younger 1/2 price (recommended for ages 8 and older)