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Chicago the Musical
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Leigh McLeod Fortier or Sandra Kuker (323) 960-7779
Email: pr4plays@plays411.com

CHICAGO
THE MUSICAL
December 2 to December 16, 2007

A story of murder, greed and corruption …
and other things we hold dear to our hearts

• Theatre classic comes to Los Angeles
• Featuring star talent

Begins December 2, 2007

(Los Angeles, CA) (November 2007)… Musical Theatre of Los Angeles is proud to announce its premiere production of one of the greatest shows ever to hit Broadway, CHICAGO THE MUSICAL.

About the Musical

“Ladies and gentlemen, you are about to see a story of murder, greed, corruption, violence, exploitation, adultery, and treachery – all those things we hold near and dear to our hearts.”

Musical Theatre of Los Angeles (MTLA) is one of the only theatre companies in the U.S. to have obtained the production rights to the show, outside of the current longest running revival on Broadway, and is excited to share their production with Los Angeles audiences.

This December will also mark the five-year anniversary of the release of the ground breaking, six-time Academy Award winning film, Chicago, directed by Rob Marshall and starring Renee Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Richard Gere.

MTLA’s production, starring Willam Belli (Nip/Tuck, Rock of Ages), Katrina Lenk (Will & Grace, Iwitness-Mark Taper Forum), David Pevsner (Desperate Housewives, Fiddler on the Roof-Broadway), Erin Spencer (CSI, Chicago-Broadway Tour) and introducing Bonnie McMahan as Roxie Hart, will be a fusion of the original Broadway production, the revivals, and the film. MTLA’S rendition holds true to the brilliant creation from the original innovators Bob Fosse, John Kander, and Fred Ebb.

With direction and choreography recreated by Jeremy Lucas (Chicago-Broadway Tour) and musical direction by Joe Greene (America’s Got Talent), MTLA’s production of Chicago, based on the play Chicago by Maurine Dallas Watkins, will also star Jon Paul Burkhart, Cheryl Murphy Johnson (opening weekend) and Amy K. Murray (the 2nd and 3rd weekend). Audiences will have the opportunity to see two very different Matron Mama Morton’s. The cast also includes Joey Acuna Jr., Don Allen, Zach Allen, Mark Espinosa, Amanda Ewing, Elisha Johnson, Ivan Jones, Ben Marquis, Vincent Perez, Tania Possick, Rae Toledo, Nikki Tomlinson, and Mary Kate Wiles


About MTLA

Musical Theatre of Los Angeles (MTLA) is an ensemble of artists dedicated to preserving the integrity of the original or revival musical production. By fostering a collaborative atmosphere through education, performance, and passion, our company provides an outlet for West Coast Musical Theatre talent, and in turn, an opportunity for our members to share their knowledge through our Youth Outreach Performing Arts Program. MTLA is committed to administering quality education and creating professional entertainment for the Los Angeles Community.

Musical Theatre of Los Angeles was founded in 2007 and is currently celebrating its first year as a member of the Los Angeles Artistic Community.


The Cast

WILLAM BELLI (Mary Sunshine)
Television: Women’s Murder Club, The District, CSI:NY, Cold Case, The Shield, Saved, My Name is Earl, Boston Public, Sex & the City, American Body Shop, “Cherry Peck” on nip/tuck (5 eps) Film: American Wedding, Because I Said So Theater: Rock of Ages (LA & Vegas), Hedwig @ Celebration, Phacts of Life @ Improv Olympic, Sluts the Musical @ Renberg, Desperate Housewives: Live! w/ Marc Cherry @ Cracked X’mas ’05. www.willambelli.com

JON PAUL BURKHART (Amos Hart)
Jon Paul is happy to be making his L.A. theatrical debut with MTLA. Past theatre: Amadeus, Amadeus; Sparky, Forever Plaid; Benjamin Cohen, The Underpants; Pozzo, Waiting for Godot; Wayne Wellacre, Inspecting Carol; Hortensio, The Taming of the Shrew; Dogberry, Much Ado…; Marvin Hamlisch, A Class Act. Film/TV: Mr. Brooks, Fright Flick, The Last Tomorrow, Spirit Camp, Dirt, and Barney & Friends. Jon Paul is managed by Shaw Management. AEA/SAG

KATRINA LENK (Velma)
Katrina is originally from Chicago, where she did many a musical including Cabaret (Sally Bowles), for which she won an Afterdark Award, Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Yitzak), Some Like it Hot (Sugar), Gigi (Gigi), and 42nd Street (Peggy Sawyer). Since moving to Los Angeles, she's had the honor of playing Grusha in South Coast Repertory's Caucasian Chalk Circle, Margaret in the American Premiere of iWitness at the Mark Taper Forum, Anna opposite John Malkovich at the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago in the World Premiere of Lost Land, and in New York she played the title role in Neil Bartlett's adaptation of Camille. Katrina is currently working on Lovelace: The Rock Opera, written by Charlotte Caffey and Anna Waronker.

BONNIE MCMAHAN (Roxie/Executive Producer)
Bonnie McMahan is the Founder and Executive Director of the Musical Theatre of Los Angeles. Some of her favorite credits include; The Wild Party (Queenie), Cabaret (Sally Bowles), Anything Goes (Reno Sweeney), Hair (Sheila), and The Pajama Game (Gladys). Bonnie would like to thank the amazing group of people who put MTLA on the map. She dedicates her performance to her family and ‘Mr. Somebody.’

CHERYL MURPHY-JOHNSON (Matron Mama Morton)
Gospel soaked, sultry, soul singer Cheryl Murphy-Johnson embodies the mystical cord that joins the Soul Singers of the past to present day. At age five, Cheryl began wooing imaginary audiences before her bedroom mirror, singing her heart out. Ultimately, she would like to display her versatility in both singing and acting via screen and television.

AMY K. MURRAY (Matron Mama Morton)
Amy played Sister Mary Patrick in the World Premiere of Sister Act The Musical at the Pasadena Playhouse and the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta. A few of her credits include Fat Girls, Little Mermaid, Pinocchio, Cinderella, Fiddler on the Roof, and the sketch show Kyuper & Me. She is a proud member of AEA.

DAVID PEVSNER (Billy Flynn)
LA: Corpus Christi (Zephyr Theater), When Pigs Fly To Bitter and Back (LA Weekly Nom, Best Solo Performance). Broadway: Fiddler; Off-Broadway: When Pigs Fly Party. TV: Criminal Minds Desperate Housewives Las Vegas. Wrote songs for Naked Boys Singing The feature Musical Comedy Whore and new revue The Fancy Boys Follies.

JEREMY LUCAS (Director, Choreographer, Producer)
Jeremy is the Artistic Director of MTLA. Most recently, he directed & choreographed The Wild Party at The Met. He has directed & choreographed all over LA and Chicago in Theatre, Film and TV. As an Actor: Broadway Tour: Chicago (Aaron/Amos-u/s). Regional: 50TH ANNIVERSARY West Side Story (Action-5th Ave. Theatre) LA: Cabaret (Emcee- McCadden Theatre), Three Sisters (Rohde- Gene Bua Theatre), Balm in Gilead (Tig- Gardner Stages), A Bug, Frog, Dog, Log & Aesop (ADA NOM. BEST ACTOR) Hooray For Bollywood (The Alex). Film: Foodfight! starring Hilary Duff (Lead- Lions Gate), Long-Term Relationship (Lead- Here! Films). TV: Gene Simmons’ Family Jewels, Nip/Tuck, Port Charles. AEA, SAG, AFTRA www.jeremylucas.net

CHICAGO THE MUSICAL runs December 2 to December 16, 2007. All performances are at the Hudson Backstage Theatre at 6539 Santa Monica Blvd. on Theatre Row in Hollywood, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM, Sundays at 3 PM and 7 PM. Previews will be November 30, December 1 and the matinee of December 2. Tickets are $30 in advance, $34.99 at the door. Running time is 110 minutes. Ample street parking available.

For reservations, call (323) 960-4424 or RESERVE ONLINE:
www.plays411.com/chicago.

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