Director Daryl Brooks has cast Zack Sorrow as Elvis Presley, Michael Kurowski as Jerry Lee Lewis, Tommy Malouf as Johnny Cash, Zachary Stevenson as Carl Perkins, Sean Fortunato as record producer Sam Phillips and Aeriel Williams as singer Dyanne in Theatre at the Center‘s production of Million Dollar Quartet. Additional cast members include musicians Michael Sinclair as Jay and Nick Anderson as Fluke. Previews begin February 14 with Opening Night on February 17 and a continued run through March 31. This production is sponsored by Pat Binkley.
Million Dollar Quartet is the hit musical with a book by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux based on the true events of a night in rock ‘n’ roll history. It dramatizes an actual recording session on Dec. 4, 1956 at the Sun Records recording studio in Memphis, Tennessee when Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley assembled for an impromptu jam session. The story explains Perkins was there to record songs with a new performer, Jerry Lee Lewis. Elvis happened to visit the studio with his girlfriend at the time, just as Johnny Cash stopped in to speak with recording impresario Sam Phillips, who is eager to re-sign Cash to a new contract, unaware he has already signed with Columbia Records.
Zach Sorrow returns to TATC after his performance in last year’s production of Big River. This is his second time playing Elvis, after understudying in the Chicago premiere of Heartbreak Hotel. Sorrow played Rolf in The Sound of Music at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. His regional credits include Lucas in The Addams Family at the New Theatre Restaurant and Doody in Grease for Royal Caribbean cruise line.
Michael Kurowski is making his Theatre at the Center debut. He recently appeared as Tootles in Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure at Chicago Shakespeare and he won a Jeff Award for Best Ensemble in Posh at Steep Theater. His onscreen credits include Gran Torino, The Armed Boy and Chicago Fire.
Also new to the TATC stage is Zachary Stevenson, a rock ‘n roll guitarist and singer who made his Chicago debut in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story and received a Jeff Award for his performance. Select credits include Hank Williams, the Show He Never Gave, Ring of Fire, Hair, Urinetown, Assassins. Stevenson also served as musical director for Million Dollar Quartet at Arts Club Theatre and Ring of Fire at Chemainus Theatre Festival.
Tommy Malouf is also making his TATC debut as Johnny Cash. He previously played “Man in Black” Cash in Ring of Fire at Metropolitan Performing Arts Center. Other credits include Heartbreak Hotel at Broadway Playhouse, The Light Fantastic at Jackalope and Great Expectations at Remy Bumpo/Silk Road Rising.
Sean Fortuanto returns to TATC where he appeared as the Emcee in Cabaret, Lancelot in Spamalot, Franz in The Producers and Max in Lend Me a Tenor. Other credits include Malvolio in Twelfth Night, The Dairy of Anne Frank and Hedda Gabler at Writers Theatre, Book of Joseph and King Charles III at Chicago Shakespeare Theater and Measure for Measure at Goodman Theatre. He has received six Jeff Award nominations and an After Dark award.
Aeriel Williams makes her debut at TATC in the role of Elvis’ gal pal Dyanne. Last May, she starred in Porchlight Music Theatre’s run of Memphis, which like Million Dollar Quartet, is also inspired by actual events. Her other favorite roles include hit productions of The Color Purple, Dreamgirls and Seven Guitars along with credits on popular television shows like The Chi and Empire.
Director Daryl Brooks is making his debut at TATC. In 2018, he directed Memphis at Porchlight Music Theater and received a Jeff Award nomination. His playwright credits include Sammy: A Tribute to Sammy Davis, Jr. and Black Pearl: A Tribute to Josephine Baker, both in 2017, both of which he also directed at Black Ensemble Theater in Chicago as well as Men of Soul, which he also wrote and directed there in 2015.
Linda Fortunato is in her fourth season as TATC Artistic Director where her recent credits include directing and choreographing Miracle on 34th Street: The Musical, Ghost:The Musical and Steel Magnolias, as well as Cabaret and Big River. Linda Fortunato has been nominated for five Jeff Awards for her work as choreographer and director and received both Equity and Non-Equity Jeff Awards for Outstanding Choreography in 2013-14, receiving TATC’s first Jeff Award for choreography of 42nd Street.
The creative team for Million Dollar Quartet includes Scenic Designer Ann Davis, Lighting Designer Denise Karczewski, Sound Designer Barry G. Funderburg, Costume Designer Caitlin Dalton, Wig Designer Kevin Barthel and Properties Designer Emily Hartig. Stage Manager is Jessica Banaszak. William Underwood is Music Director. Linda Fortunato is teamed with TATC General Manager Richard Friedman and Ann Davis, TATC Head of Production.
Founded in 1991, the 410-seat TATC is a year-round professional theater at its home: The Center for Visual and Performing Arts, 1040 Ridge Road in Munster, Indiana. TATC is an accessible venue with plenty of free parking and is located off I-80/94, just 35 minutes from downtown Chicago.
Performances are 2 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 7:30 p.m. Fridays; 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays; and 2:30 p.m. on Sundays. In addition to the regular run schedule, Theatre at the Center has added the following performances during the final seventh week of the run: Wednesday, March 27 at 2 p.m., Thursday March 28 at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 29 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, March 30 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 31 at 2:30 and 7:00 p.m. Individual ticket prices range from $42 – $46. To purchase individual tickets, call the Box Office at 219-836-3255 or Tickets.com at 800-511-1532. Group discounts are available for groups of 11 or more. Student tickets are $20 and gift certificates are also available. For more information on Theatre at the Center, visit www.TheatreAtTheCenter.com.