Walmartopia Tackles Issue #1 in Washington, DC

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The Landless Theatre Company presents the DC Premiere of Walmartopia (A Musical On A Mission) at DCAC

We are thrilled that Walmartopia is being produced in the nation's capital

The Landless Theatre Company presents the DC premiere of Walmartopia - A Musical On A Mission at DCAC, April 2 - 26, 2009. The musical is written by Wisconsin creative team Catherine Capellaro and Andrew Rohn. The production is directed by Melissa Baughman (music direction by Charles Johnson and choreography by Karissa Swanigan), and stars Robin Rouse and Brittany N. Williams, with a featured performance by four time Helen-Hayes nominee Janine Gulisano-Sunday.

"Walmartopia" runs April 2 - 26 at DCAC. Performances are Thursdays-Saturdays at 7:30. Sunday performances at 3:00 PM (except for April 19 performance at 7:30).

The recent Off-Broadway and NYC Fringe hit musical Walmartopia tells the outrageous and timely tale of a single mom and Wal-Mart employee who speaks out against her company's working conditions and finds herself and her young daughter jettisoned to 2039, into a future where Wal-Mart dominates the entire world. Yes, the musical features the singing head of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton.

After its 2005 sold-out premiere in Madison, Wisconsin, Walmartopia took to the road for the 2006 New York International Fringe Festival where it was a sensation, and as a festival favorite the musical was invited back for the Fringe Encore Series.

The irreverent send-up of big business and eternal smiley faces was called "genuine Fringe fun" by the Village Voice, and "not to be missed" by NewYorkTheater.com. Anna Jayne Marquardt in the lead role of "Vicky Latrelle" received the Outstanding Actor Award from the Fringe Festival. The show was subsequently produced at the Minetta Lane Theatre in New York.

"We are thrilled that Walmartopia is being produced in the nation's capital," said playwright Catherine Capellaro. "In these times of economic hardship, Walmartopia's pro-worker message is bound to be well received. Wal-Mart's success is built on the backs of its workers and the Chinese factory laborers who create the corporation's cheap goods. As a nation, we need to ask ourselves what are our priorities? We hope President Obama and his staff and many members of Congress get a glimpse into this science-fiction future where one corporation controls the entire world."

The production is directed by Melissa Baughman, who most recently directed President Harding Is A Rock Star (named a Washington Post Editor's Pick) and Diamond Dead (winner of the 2008 Best Musical Pick of the Fringe). She is joined by music director Charles Johnson (Gutenberg! The Musical!) and choreographer Karissa Swanigan.

The production stars Robin Rouse and Brittany N. Williams as the dynamic mother-daughter duo, and features supporting performances by Landless Artistic Director Andrew Lloyd Baughman (Gutenberg! The Musical! and President Harding Is A Rock Star) and four-time Helen Hayes Award nominee Janine Gulisano-Sunday (Toby's Jekyll and Hyde, Danny and Sylvia).

"I hope Walmartopia helps people to value their local businesses, their local flavor, all that makes their communities unique - like theatre companies that do obscure musicals," composer Andrew Rohn said.

Walmartopia runs April 2, 2009, through April 26, 2009, Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:30 PM. Sunday performances at 3:00 PM (except for April 19 performance at 7:30). All performances are held at The District of Columbia Arts Center (DCAC) located at 2438 18th Street, NW in Adams Morgan. Admission is $18. For tickets and information visit http://www.landlesstheatrecompany.org.

**Press Weekend is April 2, 3 and 4 at 7:30 PM. Call 301-613-7133 or email andrew.baughman@landlesstheatrecompany.com to RSVP.

Visit http://www.landlesstheatrecompany.org for details on the Landless Theatre Company's season.

About Landless Theatre Company: The Landless Theatre Company is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to infusing vitality into the local arts by producing exciting and accessible alternative theatre to generate new and diverse audiences. More information and production history online at http://www.landlesstheatrecompany.org

Catherine Capellaro (Book, Lyrics) and Andrew Rohn (Music, Lyrics), a husband and wife team, have performed and written musicals for more than 10 years in Madison, Wisconsin. In January of 2007, they packed their bags and moved themselves, their twin sons, then aged 7, and an exuberant yellow lab to New York to launch Walmartopia off Broadway. Walmartopia was first produced by Mercury Players in Madison in 2004 and caused a sensation at the 2006 New York International Fringe Festival. Rohn and Capellaro also created the cult hit Temp Slave in 1997; the show had a reading in 2001 by New York's Working Theater (directed by Daniel Goldstein). Rohn and Capellaro met in 1992 under the tutelage of the late iconoclastic theater director Joel Gersmann of Broom Street Theater, where Rohn composed music for The Grant (1992) and My Fair Arab (1993) and where Capellaro performed. The couple has produced ten short musicals, some of which were combined to create Attack of the Mini-Musicals (2002). They just finished a run of a new musical trilogy called Blasphemy: An Unholy Trinity of Musical Comedies, and are currently expanding one of those shows. They are both members of the Dramatists Guild of America. Visit http://www.walmartopia.com for more information or to contact the creators.

Melissa Baughman (Director) is Production Manager and a resident director for Landless Theatre Company. She last directed Washington Post Editor's Pick President Harding Is A Rockstar and the Best Musical Pick of the Fringe Diamond Dead for the 2008 Capital Fringe Festival at Warehouse Theatre. She also recently directed Hillary The Musical, which won Best in Show and Best Writing at the 72 Play Fest, as well as Batboy: The Musical, Night of the Living Dead, Godzilla and Vlad Dracula (for which she was co-lyricist). Other recent directing credits include FCC: Five Women Wearing The Same Dress; The Fun Company: The Brothers Grimm Excellent Adventure and My Father The Elf. Baughman is an accomplished stage manager, a novelist/playwright, and she earned her BA in Theatre Production from University of Delaware.

Charles Johnson (Music Director) previously served as music director/pianist for Landless productions of Gutenberg! The Musical! and The Last Five Years. Recent musical direction credits include Kiss Me Kate for the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre in Florida, and Forever Plaid for the National Park Players in Colorado. Charles has also served five years as musical director and vocal coach for Stagedoor Manor in upstate New York. Other favorite Music Direction credits include Assassins, Into the Woods, The Fantastiks, and The Rocky Horror Show. Favorite onstage credits include Bobby Strong in Urinetown, Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors, and Jean-Michel in La Cage Aux Folles.

Robin Rouse (Vicki Latrell), a Baltimore-area actress, received her B.A. in Theatre performance from SUNY at Fredonia. In addition to theatre, Robin has also had the privilege of performing as a jazz vocalist (her first love) in New York State and in the Baltimore/Annapolis area and in 1995 won the Billie Holiday Vocal Competition. Robin left the theatre scene for over a decade to raise two great sons but in recent years has enjoyed performing at Toby's Dinner Theatre, Pumpkin Theatre, Theatre Hopkins and the Maryland Arts Festival, among others.

Brittany N. Williams (Maia) spent the last year performing at Hong Kong Disneyland and is happy to be back in the USA. She holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Howard University.

Janine Sunday (Ensemble) is a four time Helen Hayes nominee for Lead Actress in a Resident Musical: "Maria"/West Side Story (Toby's), "Fiona"/Brigadoon (West End), Sylvia"/Danny and Sylvia (American Century), "Lucy"/Jekyll and Hyde (Toby's). Two time Baltimore Theater Award Winner: "Kim"/Miss Saigon (Toby's) and "Alice"/Titanic (Toby's). Local credits: "Andrea"/Jerry Springer the Opera (Studio), "Younger Woman"/Putting it Together (Signature), "June"/The Musical of Musicals (MetroStage), "Narrator"/Joseph...(Olney), "Pureza"/The Odyssey of Telemeca (TFA), "Amneris"/Aida (Toby's), "Lilli"/Kiss Me Kate (Toby's), "Belle"/Beauty and the Beast (Toby's). Regional credits: Kennedy Center: Sweeney Todd. North Carolina Theater: Man of La Mancha, The King and I.

Andrew Lloyd Baughman (Ensemble) is the Producing Artistic Director of Landless Theatre Company and an Associate Artist of Maryland Ensemble Theatre. Most recent Landless roles include "Warren G. Harding" in President Harding Is A Rock Star and "Bud Davenport" in Gutenberg! The Musical!. He also appeared in Diamond Dead (which he also music directed and conceived/adapted for the stage from a screenplay by Brian Cooper with music by Richard Hartley, Emmy Winning Composer of The Rocky Horror Picture Show). The production won Best Musical Pick of the Capital Fringe Festival in 2008. Other acting credits include Maryland Ensemble Theatre: Officer Lockstock/Urinetown, Burrs/Lippa's The Wild Party, John/The Fifth of July, Jerry/Betrayal, Carl and L-rock/Planet Claire, Charlie/Dirty Blonde, Eddie and Dr. Scott/Rocky Horror Show, John Wilkes Booth/Assassins; SAB Productions: Judas/Jesus Christ Superstar, Father/Children of Eden, Captain Walker/Tommy, Dracula/Dracula, El Gallo/The Fantasticks; Smithereens: Dr. Parker/Batboy; Cumberland Theatre: Sandy/Hay Fever; West End Dinner Theatre: Orin and Others/Little Shop of Horrors. Baughman is an Equity Membership Candidate.

Jared Davis (Set Design) has designed set for Landless productions of Debbie Does
Dallas, Cannibal! The Musical, Night of the Living Dead, Batboy, and A Very Merry
Children's Scientology Pageant. Jared designs for groups including Trixie Little and the Evil Tap Dancing Hate Monkey, The Lobsterboy Revue, Hexagon,Washington Shakespeare Company, Palace of Wonders and Imagination Stage. He organized Yuri's Night 2008(Alexandria), where Landless was featured as "theatrical con-tent", performing selected scenes from Space Battles the Musical. Additionally, Jared makes his own brand of Tiki art. Visit him at http://www.artbyjared.com.

Elizabeth Reeves' (Costume design) design credits for Landless most recently include Gutenberg! The Musical!, A Very Merry Unauthorized Children's Scientology Pageant, Batboy, and Yours Truly, Jack the Ripper. Other credits include King and I, Once Upon a Mattress, Arsenic and Old Lace, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Damn Yankees, Brigadoon, The Wizard of Oz, Pippin and many, many more. She holds theatre degrees from Loretto Heights College/Regis University. Her designs can currently be seen on several different groups in MD, VA, and DC.

The Cast
Vicki Latrell - Robin Rouse
Maia Latrell - Brittany Williams
Miguel/Zeb - Jason Wilson
Ensemble - Ernie Achenbach, Andrew Lloyd Baughman, Matt Baughman, Janine Gulisano-Sunday, Momo Nakamura, Karissa Swanigan, Courtney Tisch, Brian Turley

Production Staff
Director - Melissa Baughman
Music Director - Charles Johnson
Choreographer - Karissa Swanigan
Set Design - Jared Davis
Costume Design - Elizabeth Reeves
Lighting Design - Peter Vargo
Props - Melissa Baughman

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