LIBERTYVILLE—Liberty Town Productions, Libertyville’s not-for-profit entertainment company, hosts its third annual Musical Summer Showcase featuring the Best of Broadway on Saturday, August 6th in The Fuel Room of Austin’s Saloon & Eatery. Show times are 6:30 and 9 pm.
The showcase, performed in a cabaret-style setting, will include Broadway tunes from such contemporary shows as Wicked and Rent, standards like Grease and Funny Girl…and plenty in between. The cast features local performers, many of whom are either studying for professional music careers or are already performing with professional organizations and troupes. The showcase is directed by Libertyville’s Terry Bangs and Annie Snow and Grayslake’s Dustin Helvie.
This year’s cast includes Jenny Bakakos, Maggie Bieritz, Dawn Crowther, Patrick Farbo, Kiersten Frumkin, Tim Heller, Susie Kiefer, Polly Ludena, Scott Metzger, Scott Muller, Willson Oppedahl, Penny Roman, Annie Snow, Nick Snow, Jodi Thors, Jon Weppler and Demi Zaino. The band includes Bill Coronelli on percussion, Charlie Klepac on guitar, Kevin Reeks on keyboard and Mike Ryan on bass.
Tickets for either of the two performances (6:30 pm and 9 pm) are $18 ($15 for students) online in advance at www.libertownproductions.com. Tickets purchased at the door are $20.
Liberty Town Productions president Barry Reszel said the Summer Showcase embodies Liberty Town’s mission. “We want our niche to be that of an entertainment company where the producers take care of the people who work with us,” he said.
“It’s not our goal to just ‘do shows.’ We work hard to create community, and we are looking to build our family with every event we put our name on. In fact, anyone who’s looking to be part of a fun group of people who want to enhance greater Libertyville should check out the “fan club” page of our website and tell us how you’d like to get involved.
“We are looking for folks onstage, backstage and who want to help with all aspects of running this company. Of course, while you’re on the site, be sure to buy your Showcase tickets, too.”
Austin’s Fuel Room is a 220-seat auditorium at the back of Austin’s Saloon, 481 Peterson Road, Libertyville. Liberty Town chose the Fuel Room as its venue because of the cabaret setting, the casual atmosphere, the excellent technical support and the encouragement provided by Austin’s owner Mark Khayat.
“Austin’s has been great for three years now,” said Libertyville’s Lizz Dabney, another Liberty Town board member. “Our initial concern was whether people under age 21 would be permitted to attend because, after all, they call Austin’s a ‘saloon.’ But that was and remains a non-issue; the place is wonderful and family-friendly. So is the show.”
“And by the way,” said Reszel, “don’t call it a talent show. Many of our cast members are students and graduates of some of the best performing arts programs in the country. The first showcase featured Ian Liberto, who is currently on Broadway with Billy Elliott and just finished Promises, Promises. Like the last two years’ showcases, you’ll see a performance on August 6th that will be as professional as you’ll find anywhere in the area.”