San Francisco Arts Education Project's 'SFArtsEd Players' Perform Classic Musical THE PAJAMA GAME, February 7-15, 2009

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Love blooms in a pajama factory as workers fight for better wages. SFArtsEd Players, ages 9-15, perform Broadway's classic musical, THE PAJAMA GAME, based on novel '7-1/2 Cents' by Richard Bissell, with score by Richard Adler & Jerry Ross

San Francisco Arts Education Project (SFArtsEd) celebrates the eighth year of its musical theater company, The SFArtsEd Players, with a two-week run of Broadway's classic musical, 'The Pajama Game', at San Francisco's Eureka Theatre. Featuring a diverse group of 40 young theater artists ranging in ages from 9 through 15, the SFArtsEd Players will give six performances of the lively Broadway classic: Saturday, February 7, 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. (gala performance); Sunday, February 8, 2 p.m.; Saturday, February 14, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, February 15, 2 p.m. All performances are at Eureka Theatre, 215 Jackson Street (between Front and Battery), San Francisco (wheelchair accessible). Tickets to the SFArtsEd Players' performances of The Pajama Game ($15 adults; $10 seniors & students; Gala performance, $30 per ticket, Saturday, Feb. 7, 8 pm) are available from City Box Office, (415) 392-4400, http://www.cityboxoffice.com.

On Saturday evening, February 7, special guest B. D. Wong hosts the 8 pm benefit performance that will raise money for scholarships for SFArtsEd programs. A Tony award-winning actor and a performer in film and television, B. D. Wong currently stars in Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. He is a San Francisco native who attended public schools, and is a long-time activist for arts education and alternative families. At the gala performance, B. D. Wong will both welcome the audience and conduct a question-and-answer session following the performance.

SFArtsEd Players' performances of The Pajama Game are a collaboration of the San Francisco Arts Education Project and the School of The Arts High School Technical Theater program. Students from SOTA's program design the technical aspects of the performances, including set, props and lighting, and are responsible for stage management of the shows as part of SFArtsEd's apprentice programs.

Artistic Director of SFArtsEd and the SFArtsEd Players is Emily Keeler; Theatrical Director is acclaimed theater professional Danny Duncan. The show's Musical Directors are Diana Lee and Henry Shin. Choreography for the show is provided by Mr. Duncan, Ms. Keeler and Natalie Greene. Set Design is by Dan Kyston, who heads the Technical Theater program at SOTA.

Artistic Director Emily Keeler says, "This year's company is a talented group--a perfect mixture of seasoned veterans and brand new Players. We have as always an inspirational artistic staff and this Broadway chestnut is going to come to life for our audiences in a new and surprising way. It is both a delightful show to revisit, and a great one to bring children to as an introduction to the musical theater. There is great music and dancing, and one of those screwball romantic librettos that is absolutely of its time."

In addition to its Eureka Theatre run, The SFArtsEd Players will perform The Pajama Game at School of the Arts High School (SOTA), in free matinee performances for San Francisco Unified School District students on Thursday and Friday, April 16 and 17 at 10 a.m. For more information, call SFArtsEd at (415) 551-7990, or visit http://www.sfartsed.org.

About The Pajama Game -- The Pajama Game is a musical based on the novel 7-1/2 Cents by Richard Bissell, and features a score by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross. The story deals with labor troubles in a pajama factory, where worker demands for a 7-1/2 cent raise are going unheeded. In the midst of this ordeal, love blossoms between Babe, the complaint committee head, and Sid, the new factory superintendent. The original Broadway production opened on May 13, 1954, and ran for 1,063 performances. It was revived in 1973, and again in 2006 by The Roundabout Theatre Company. The original production won a Tony for Best Musical, and the 2006 Broadway revival won a Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical. A bright and brassy Broadway classic brimming with songs and dances The Pajama Game is a perfect show for the whole family: it features songs that are now musical standards like "Steam Heat" and "Hernando's Hideaway" and will introduce children and their families to one of Broadway's best musicals of The Golden Era.

About SFArtsEd -- Founded in 1965 (as the Alvarado Arts Workshop) by renowned artist Ruth Asawa, SFArtsEd has transformed the lives of children, their families, teachers, artists and volunteers. Programs include SFArtsEd Summer camp, In-School Artists-In-Residence, After-School programs, The SFArtsEd Players Musical Theater Company, apprentice programs for college and high school students, and One-to-See public arts exhibits.

About The SFArtsEd Players -- The SFArtsEd Players is a musical theater company that reflects San Francisco in all its diversity. Hailing from the neighborhoods of San Francisco, the SFArtsEd Players is a pre-professional teaching company made up of 40 young theater artists who come from SFArtsEd's performing arts residencies, as well as from the organization's summer arts intensive, SFArtsEd Summer, held each year at School District sites. The young performers are selected for their talent, commitment, and enthusiasm for the musical theater form. They work with the directors of the company 12 hours each week, training as "triple threats" (actor/singer/dancers) and rehearsing for their performances. The company performs both original musicals and the classics of the Broadway canon.

Tickets and Information
Tickets to The SFArtsEd Players' performances of The Pajama Game are $15 adults; $10 seniors and students. Ticket price for the gala performance at 8 p.m. on Saturday, on February 7 is $30 per ticket. To purchase advance tickets, call City Box Office at (415) 392-4400, or visit the City Box Office website at http://www.cityboxoffice.com. Tickets will also be on sale at the theatre box office prior to each performance.

For more information about SFArtsEd and its programs, please call (415) 551-7990, or visit http://www.sfartsed.org.

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Emily Keeler, Artistic Director

Diane Roby
RED Communications
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