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    Stacks Image 1058297
    April 20 - May 14
    Marian Theatre
    July 6 - 23
    Solvang Festival Theater
    This musical comedy, a bedroom farce, is best enjoyed by children 12 and older.

    Children under 5 are not admitted into the theatre.
    Lend Me A Tenor The Musical Study Guide
    Lend Me A Tenor The Musical
    Book and Lyrics by Peter Sham
    Music by Brad Carroll
    Based on the play by Ken Ludwig
    Orchestrations by Chris Walker
    Original Music Supervisor: Paul Gemignani
    Generously sponsored by
    Judge & Mrs. Jed Q. Beebe
    Brad & Jacquie Hinds
    The McLaughlin Clan
    The riotous tale of mistaken identities and unexpected romance explodes in this brand new musical comedy based on the Tony Award nominated play. It’s 1934 and Opera virtuoso Tito Merelli is about to revive one of his great triumphs for the 10-year anniversary of the Cleveland Grand Opera Company. When Tito becomes unexpectedly incapacitated, a suitable replacement must be found. Who is cavalier enough to replace him? Max, the Opera Director’s sheepish assistant, is charged with the daunting task of finding a suitable replacement. With the help of a menacing soprano, a tenor-struck ingenue, a jealous wife, and the Cleveland Police Department, mayhem, lunacy and shear panic ensue, but in the end the show must always go on.
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    Lend Me A Tenor: The Musical
    Marian Theatre
    April 20 - May 14, 2017
    Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    23 24 25 26 27 28 29
    30 May1 2 3 4 5 6
    7 8 9 10 11 12 13

    Santa Maria Performance Times
    1:30pm 7pm 1:30 & 7pm

    Lend Me A Tenor: The Musical
    Solvang Festival Theater
    July 6 - 23, 2017
    Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    9 10 11 12 13 14 15
    16 17 18 19 20 21 22
    Solvang Performance Times

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    Musical Director
    Scenic Designer
    Costume Designer
    Lighting Designer
    Sound Designer
    Production Stage Manager
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    George Walker as Tito Merelli +
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    Caroline Whelehan as Maggie
    Joe Ogren as Max (Tito) +
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    Joe Ogren as Max (Tito)
    George Walker as Tito Merelli
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    Karin Hendricks as Diana
    George Walker as Tito Merelli
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    Joe Ogren as Max
    Erik Stein* as Saunders
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    Caroline Whelehan as Maggie Saunders
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    photos: Luis Escobar Reflections Photography Studio
    except+: Michael Collins
    Lend Me A Tenor clips
    Lend Me A Tenor New Clips
    Lend Me A Tenor testimonials

    Lend Me A Tenor The Musical unfolds into a riotous and unpredictable explosion of mistaken identities, fulfilled dreams, and renewed love! This brand new musical comedy is based on the Tony award nominated play by Ken Ludwig.

    Lend Me A Tenor The Musical boasts a score with a decidedly thirties flair, while frequently paying homage to the world of opera. It was first performed at the Utah Shakespearean Festival in 2007. It moved to London with a two-week out of town tryout at the Theatre Royal in 2010. It opened on London’s West End at the Gielgud Theatre in 2011 and was nominated for a Laurence Olivier Award. The show has had numerous subsequent performances throughout Europe.

    Music composer Brad Carroll and Peter Sham (book and lyrics) were in residence at Utah Shakespeare Festival in 2006 when they were commissioned to write a musical. After a lot of kicking around ideas, mostly looking for stories in public domain and a comedy, Sham was struck with the notion of contacting Ken Ludwig and asking for the rights to musicalize his play Lend Me A Tenor. While initially it seemed like a random long-shot of an idea, it actually made perfect sense, Ludwig’s play was one of - if not the - most popular comedies in the country having played in most every regional theatre in the country over the course of two decades. After a brief mulling-over by Ludwig, he granted the rights and Utah Shakes, after seeing a partial script and one workshop, committed it to their following season. The musical created a fair amount of excitement from New York producers who wanted to move the project forward with more workshops and development. It became evident to the writers that it would be more expedient to take it to London, though as it turned out, it still took five years to get it to the next step.

    Initially, the musical opened with a big production number with the entire chorus on stage singing “Otello.” Brad Carroll said he’d always thought they were giving it all away before they’d even begun. That was one in a series of changes, tweaks and compression of scenes that the play went through during, and after, its tryout at Theatre Royal Plymouth and then the premiere at the Gielgud Theatre in London’s West End. “The biggest change we’re making for this production,” said Carroll, “is the opera within the play is no longer Otello, it’s Pagliacci, because of the sensitivity in the world right now regarding ethnic diversity and casting.” In the 230 year tradition of Giuseppe Verdi’s Otello, the character Othello has been a white man in black face. And that would not be appropriate today. Interesting to note, however, continuing the black face tradition in the play hasn’t dampened the enthusiasm for any of the 16 productions of Lend Me A Tenor The Musical that have been staged throughout Europe over the last few years.

    The conceit, explained Carroll, is that there has to be some sort of mask to disguise the identities of three men. “In Pagliacci he’s wearing the white mask of the clown as opposed to the ‘black mask’ of the Moor.” Carroll said that the reworking was minimal; involving rewriting just two pieces of music and rewriting about 24 lines of dialogue. “And, I think the overall effect will not be diminished. It might even be funnier, because it’s now three clowns running around!”

    It’s the biggest night in the history of the Cleveland Grand Opera Company. World-famous tenor, Tito Merelli – “Il Stupendo” – is to perform Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci at the 50th anniversary gala season-opener. However, during the final dress rehearsal, Tito is nowhere to be found and Henry Saunders, the opera’s executive director, along with Max Garber, his assistant, are in a panic (“Where The Hell Is Merelli?”). Meanwhile, Maggie Saunders, Henry’s daughter, is making preparations for Tito’s arrival and soon we realize that she has other plans concerning Merelli (“Fling”). Henry rushes in and Max suggests an alternate plan should Tito fail to show (“How ‘Bout Me?”). Finally, Tito and his wife, Maria, arrive (“For The Love Of Opera”). But Tito is in shaky shape to perform. He has a terrible stomachache, and what’s more, is at odds with his wife over his alleged preoccupation with women (“Facciamo L’amor”). Unable to take it any longer, Maria begins composing a “goodbye forever” note to her husband (“The Last Time”). Meanwhile, oblivious in the next room, Max and Tito share an unexpected moment (“Be You’ self”). Soon Tito, groggy after unwittingly ingesting a triple dose of tranquillizers, finds Maria’s note and threatens to kill himself. Max calms his tirade and sings him tenderly to sleep (“Before You Know It”). Later, when Max returns to wake Tito, the tenor is lifeless. Max comes to the horrifying conclusion that Tito is “dead”! Henry hears the news and convinces Max that now he MUST play Pagliacci (“How ‘Bout Me?” Reprise). Soon the room is besieged by the members of the opera company (“Act 1 Finale”). Max, now dressed as Pagliaccio, and a bundle of confusion and doubt, resolves to finish what he’s started and leaves the room triumphantly – as Tito awakes from his stupor.

    Act two begins backstage with Max (as Tito) concluding his performance in Pagliacci (“Pagliacci Final Moments”). A triumph, Max receives his due (“Il Stupendo”). Max returns to the penthouse (still in costume) only to find Maggie at the door. Thinking he is Tito, she asks a favor (“Lend Me A Tenor”). Soon Max discovers that Tito has disappeared and exits as the real Tito (dressed as Pagliaccio) enters. Diana surprises Tito and treats him to an impromptu audition (“May I Have A Moment?”). At once the penthouse bursts into an uncontrolled and unpredictable explosion of mistaken identities. Maggie is left in the sitting room with Max, while Henry (also dressed as Pagliaccio) and Diana are left in the bedroom. They begin to make love. Meanwhile, at the gala, Tito is desperately trying to escape (“Il Stupendo” Reprise). In the “after-glow” in the penthouse, Max is left alone to ponder his mistake (“Knowing What I Know”). Finally, the truth is revealed and everyone is filled with a sense that they just might get the thing each of them desires, and that the Cleveland Grand Opera Company’s future will be a bright one (“Act 2 Finale”).

    Peter Sham is a veteran regional actor, writer, director and educator. In addition to Lend Me A Tenor The Musical, he is the author of the musicals Toyland, It’s a Dog’s Life and Waxworks, and the plays Shakespeare’s Moby Dick, a classical adaptation of Melville’s novel, Killer Kane (with William Peter Blatty, The Exorcist), and A Christmas Carol: On The Air (also with Brad Carroll). As an actor, his work has been seen at such places as the Asolo Theatre, Milwaukee Rep, Studio Arena Theatre, Eastside Playhouse, Perry Street Theatre, The Neil Simon Festival and Tony Award-winning Utah Shakespeare Festival, where he’s been a principal member for twelve seasons. Peter holds an MFA in Acting from the University of Delaware’s Professional Theatre Training Program. He is head of acting & directing at Southern Utah University, and the 2013 recipient of the Kennedy Center ACTF’s Excellence in Education Award.

    Brad Carroll is a recognized regional theatre director, music director and composer whose work has taken him all over the world. In addition to Lend Me A Tenor The Musical, he is the co-creator of the new musical, Christmas Is Here Again, based on the animated feature by Robert Zappia. Other produced works include A Christmas Carol: On The Air (also with Peter Sham) for the Utah Shakespeare Festival; Amelia Lost (librettist) with composer, Larry Delinger; Cio Cio San, a new opera-theatre piece (composer/arranger); Christmas Is…A Musical Memory and Robin Hood. Musical scores composed for dramatic productions - Cyrano De Bergerac, King Lear, As You Like It, Measure For Measure, Death Of A Salesman and To Kill A Mockingbird. He is also a writer, director and musical arranger for Walt Disney Entertainment’s, TokyoDisneySea and is currently Resident Artist/Artistic Associate for PCPA - Pacific Conservatory Theatre in Santa Maria, CA.
    Stage Scene LA
    "The entire cast of zanies populating Ken Ludwig’s phenomenally popular Lend Me A Tenor launch into both song and dance in PCPA's Lend Me A Tenor The Musical, one of the best Broadway shows never to have been seen on Broadway, or at least not yet.
    Lend Me A Tenor The Musical savvily substitutes Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci for Verdi’s Otello (i.e., no offensive blackface this time round), adds a third character to a scene previously involving two identically dressed tenors, and does so with such farcical brilliance, Ludwig himself ought to take note."

    full review here
    Voice Magazine
    "… a family free-for-all that has the audience rolling over and gasping for breath. This is a farce and it's performed to precision. The company is not just solid, it is inspirationally adroit with its timing and its characterizations."
    Santa Barbara Independent
    ‘Lend Me a Tenor [The Musical]’ at PCPA

    Fast Pace and Comic Timing Make PCPA’s ‘Tenor’ a Hit

    This musical adaptation of Ken Ludwig’s farcical ode to Pagliacci offers door-slamming tomfoolery, fast-paced comic melodrama, and three clowns running around downtown Cleveland and pretending to be the famous tenor Tito Merelli. When the Merellis arrive at their hotel suite, Maria (Bree Murphy), tired of her husband’s flirtatious tendencies, writes a “by the time you read this I’ll be gone” note and leaves Tito (George Walker) to his fame  — and his fans.

    Directed by Brad Carroll, the PCPA cast did an outstanding job of maintaining high, humorous energy in a show that demands a fast pace and precise timing. A well-conceived production with handsome period costuming (by Eddy L. Barrows), Lend Me a Tenor showcases musical comedic talent at PCPA.

    Read the entire review… click here
    Sun Review
    Lend Me a Tenor the Musical is a bona fide, booming big Broadway-esque spectacle, crying out for bigger attention.

    Lend Me a Tenor the Musical is a giddy masterpiece of sorts. It has all the right components of what makes a tremendous musical sensation. A quirky, opposites-attract romance? Check. The comedically absurd misunderstandings found in a typical farce? Check. A bellowing, boisterous supporting cast that offers up the biggest laughs of the night? Check (Stein as Saunders) and triple check (Kitty Balay, Meami Maszewski, and Vivian Vaeth as the Opera guild ladies).

    [Brad] Carroll and [Peter] Sham have ticked off all the boxes with an impressive selection of songs that leave no doubt that this is a hit maker. “How ’Bout Me” is a great toe-tapper, and “Be You’self” is that kind of once-in-a-blue-moon power duet that culminates with big vocals, just the kind of number you expect and want to hear in the first act.

    All in all, the talent and toe-tappers make the production a rousing success (as the audience’s minute-long applause breaks between songs will convince you). If you’ve ever wanted to see what a true Broadway hit would look like before it ever got to Broadway, this is your chance.

    Read the entire review… click here
    Sun Feature
    Turning a farce that takes place in one hotel room into a big Broadway-style musical is more involved than blocking out a few dance numbers or adding a dazzling ballad. [Peter] Sham and [Brad] Carroll had to introduce modifications, like changing the opera Tito is in town to perform and moving the location out of a hotel room. The writers quickly discovered that by adding musical numbers with lyrics that tell their own story about the characters, it significantly impacted the rest of the play.

    “We discovered we’re gonna have to flesh these people out a little more, if they’re really going to sing these songs and have these big emotional moments,” Carroll said. “So we spent a lot of time just exploring what else could there be about this person.”

    Within a few months, they had producers from New York tracking them down in Utah, eager to get in on the production just from the name alone. One of those producers eventually convinced Sham and Carroll to open the play in London’s legendary West End theater district. Carroll hadn’t even imagined such a thing would be possible or how it would turn out.

    “Peter and I just wanted to make a fun play,” he said.

    read more…
    SLO Tribune Feature
    “Pagliacci” isn’t the only opera referenced in “Lend Me a Tenor The Musical.” Carroll peppers the hummable score with nods to “La Bohème,” “Madama Butterfly” and the works of Richard Wagner, as well as Great American Songbook stalwarts such as Cole Porter, Jerome Kern and Irving Berlin.

    “The music is Gershwin meets Verdi,” the composer explained, mixed with “moments that sound like they’re right out of a Warner Brothers cartoon.”

    “All that stuff lives in my brain and my soul, so it comes out when I write.”

    Stylistically, “Lend Me a Tenor The Musical” “really harkens back to the golden age of movie musicals of the 1920s and ’30s,” Marszalowski said. “It’s a feel-good story. There’s toe-tapping music, and it’s just raucously, raucously funny.”

    “We wrote it for people to come to the theater and have a really good time,” Carroll said. “People can come and laugh and laugh, and laugh some more.”

    Read more here:
    Lompoc Record
    “Lend Me a Tenor” is a familiar title to fans of stage comedy. The original play, by Ken Ludwig, is a farce -- a genre that can be difficult to translate into a musical format. Who has time to sing about their innermost feelings when they're busy running amok?

    Luckily, Brad Carroll (music) and Peter Shan (book and lyrics) have given their adaptation plenty of heart. Despite being a recent work -- its London premiere was in 2011 -- it feels like a lighthearted musical comedy straight out of the 1930s.


    Act Two is a tumble of mistaken identity and innuendo. Here, [Karin] Hendricks gets to shine as her character tries to seduce “Tito,” while also trying to audition for him.

    The contribution of the excellent ensemble cannot be overstated. The cast harmonizes beautifully on the big group numbers (music direction by Paul Marszalkowski). And Eddy L. Barrows' costumes are a visual delight, from the Opera Guild ladies' sparkling gowns to the colorful commedia dell'arte costumes of the opera cast.

    If you miss the bygone days of musical comedy -- or you just like laughs and toe-tapping tunes -- you won't want to miss this production.

    Read more…
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