Cortland Repertory Theatre is announcing a full line-up of shows and events for the winter and spring at their downtown performing arts facility, located at 24 Port Watson Street in historic downtown Cortland. Admission prices vary per event. Starting in January, a series of monthly TRIVIA NIGHTS are planned for the third Thursday of the first four months of the year. At 7:00 PM on January 18, February 15, March 15 and April 19, trivia buffs in teams of up to 4 people will be challenged to six rounds of five questions in a wide range of topics. This fund raiser for the CRT Youth Programs encourages friendly competition between families, friends and businesses, with prizes for each round and one evening Grand Prize, including CRT tickets. Admission is $5.00 per person and a beer/wine cash bar will be available.
On Saturday, February 10, CRT celebrates Valentine’s Day by offering dancing, desserts and drinks with a performance by the NYC singing group AMERICA’S SWEETHEARTS performing their show “A Century of Sweetness”. Celebrating history through harmony, this singing and swinging trio of ladies perform material from 1860 thru 1980 in the 3-part harmony style of the Andrews Sisters. Audiences are encouraged to cut a rug on the dance floor or just enjoy the music and delectable desserts. Seating is cabaret style, four people to a table. Audiences are encouraged to come with their loved one or bring a group of friends. The evening begins at 7:30; tickets are $35.00 which includes the show, desserts and non-alcoholic beverages. A beer/wine cash bar will be available.
Just after the second Trivia Night on February 15, the downtown Grand Hall will highlight some of Cortland’s best artists arranged as a “CABIN FEVER” VISUAL ARTS GALLERY. From February 16 – 23, CRT partners with the Cultural Council of Cortland County and transforms the theatre into an elegant art gallery displaying beautiful paintings, sculpture and other visual artistry created by Cortland’s own artists. Art enthusiasts are invited to be the first to see the gallery at the Grand Opening on Friday, February 16 from 5:00 – 8:00 PM. Light appetizers, a beer/wine cash bar, live music and a prize raffle will be offered, along with the chance to mingle with the artists. Select pieces will be available for purchase. Tickets to the gala are $25.00. The gallery will then be open the following week for daily viewing, allowing visitors to stroll thru at their leisure. Hours are: Saturday, Feb 17 – 9:00 – 5:00; Sunday, Feb 18 – 1:00 – 5:00; Monday Feb 19 – Friday, Feb 23 from 1:00 – 5:00. During these hours, entrance to the gallery is free with a $5.00 suggested donation.
CRT next welcomes hysterical COMEDIAN BENGT WASHBURN on Friday, March 2 at 7:30 PM. As seen on Conan, Comedy Central and The Late Late Show with Colin Ferguson, Bengt (pronounced “bent”) offers his unique view of the world in an evening of “clean”, PG rated comedy. Bengt is a former winner of the prestigious San Francisco International Comedy Competition, and has performed at the Vancouver International Comedy Festival, The Boston Comedy Festival, the Aspen Laff Festival and Gilda’s Laugh Fest in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He’s been heard on NPR, PRI and Bob and Tom. All three of his comedy Cd’s can be heard playing on XM Sirius radio. An evening with Bengt presents the world through the eyes of a small town Mormon man gone slightly awry. His musing are clever, philosophical, sophomoric and hilarious. Tickets are $20.00 in advance, $25.00 the day of the show, and a beer/wine cash bar is available.
Audiences should prepare to be astonished in the next show when on Friday and Saturday, March 9 & 10 at 7:30 PM, CRT presents MAGIC BEYOND IMAGINATION, a one-of-a-kind magical experience with two of the most extraordinary magicians in the world. This intense, “up close” and unforgettable experience features world-renown magician Garrett Thomas, a magical creator, technician and artist who has served as a consultant for David Blaine. Also on the ticket is humorist/magician Kozmo who keeps the audience laughing and awestruck with his slight-of-hand magic. Seating is limited due to the intimate style of these incredible performers. Tickets for this family-friendly show are $25.00 in advance, $30.00 the day of the show and $35.00 for VIP, front row seats which includes a pre-show meeting with the magicians.
YOU WON’T BELIEVE YOUR EYES!
Following the third Trivia Night on March 15, the CRT Guild’s annual mystery dinner theatre offers three performances: Saturday, March 17, Friday March 23 and Saturday March 24. Performed by the Acme Mystery Company from Syracuse, this year’s production is entitled DEAD MEAT. The story: “Mama Mia! The Tortellini Corner Market is small but proud with a distinctive fragrance, just like its owner, Papa Tortellini. But lately, life is “notta so good” for Papa. Health inspector Harry Graft, his wife Mama Celeste, and some other shady characters have got him in their cross hairs. Papa’s counting on the audience to help sort out all these steaks from sausages. But don’t be late for the meeting – Papa will put the “evil eye” on you.” Doors will open at 6:30; the meal is provided by Linani’s Catering of Homer and includes appetizer, dinner, desert and coffee. A beer/wine cash bar will be available. All tickets are $50.00.
On Sunday, March 25, the CRT Youth Programs present the popular Traveling Lantern Theatre Company’s production of PINOCCHIO at 2:00 PM. This familiar tale about the little wooden puppet who longs to be a real boy will be performed by two actors playing all the characters, including Gepetto the wood carver, the philosopher Cricket and the Blue Fairy. Sponsored by M&T Bank, tickets for this production are $7.00 each. The Traveling Lantern has previously been seen at CRT with their productions of The Story of Ebenezer Scrooge and Robin Hood.
Next, CRT welcomes America’s hottest rock/opera mash-up sensation THE JERSEY TENORS for two performances, on Friday and Saturday, April 13 & 14 at 7:30 PM. From Frank Sinatra to Frankie Valli to Figaro, these “wise guys” create an explosive blend of iconic opera classics mixed with rock hits. With powerful voices, this quartet belts out hits by Queen, Journey, Elton John, Billy Joel and more. They also highlight Jersey’s Finest including The Four Seasons, Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen and even Whitney Houston. Tickets for this incredible performance are $35.00; a beer/wine cash bar will be available.
Following the fourth and final spring Trivia Night on April 19, CRT takes a trip to the “right” side of the political spectrum, when on Friday, April 20 at 7:30 PM one of the sharpest minds and tongues in stand-up comedy, COMEDIAN NICK DI PAOLO, stops by on his “Nick is Right” Tour. While 95% of comedians lean liberal, Nick leans the other way and he’s not afraid to call it as he sees it. He is the nightly host of The Nick Di Paolo Show on Sirius/XM and has been featured on The Tonight Show, The Late Show, Conan, Hannity and Fox & Friends. He was twice nominated for an Emmy for his writing on HBO’s The Chris Rock Show, and has had three specials on Comedy Central. As an actor, he has appeared on Louie, Inside Amy Schumer, The Sopranos as well as many sitcoms. Tickets for this “mature audiences only” evening of “R” rated comedy are $25.00 in advance, $30.00 the day of the show. A beer/wine cash bar will be available.
Take a trip back in musical time with CRT’s next performer when NYC sensation Amy Lynn and The Honey Men perform their CELEBRATION OF JANIS JOPLIN in “A Woman Left Lonely”. In this loving tribute to Joplin’s indomitable spirit, powerhouse vocalist Amy Lynn and her 7-piece band tear into those ferocious songs while re-contextualizing them for today. Amy considers Janis’s legacy as a sexually liberated, emotionally vulnerable woman in today’s context, when such a person is only slightly less terrifying to the world than she was in the 60’s. Songs include Piece of My Heart, Little Girl Blue, A Woman Left Lonely, Me and Bobby McGee and many more. Tickets for this amazing show are $35.00, with a beer/wine cash bar.
The final performance this spring is another offering from the CRT Youth Programs, with an original children’s musical written by former Kitchen Theatre Artistic Director Rachel Lambert. In EMMETT & ELLA: THE PUPPY PLOT, Louella loves her pet dogs, Emmett the hound dog and Ella the retriever. When Sierra and Adam, Louella’s cranky niece and nephew come for a visit, the whole household changes. Emmett & Ella hatch a plan to create a connection between the two kids and two abandoned puppies, and what follows is a meaningful journey for everyone. Sponsored by M&T Bank, tickets for this show are just $7.00.
For more information on any of these shows or events, please visit CortlandRep.org. Tickets are available for purchase online at the theatre’s website, by calling 800-427-6160 or by visiting CRT Downtown at 24 Port Watson Street in Cortland. Winter/Spring hours are Mon-Fri 9:00 – 5:00. Tickets for the summer season of productions at the Little York Pavilion will go on sale May 21.