Pittsburgh Cultural Trust Media Contact:
Robin Elrod, Director of PR and Communications
firstname.lastname@example.org | 412-471-8716
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and Broadway Across America present
SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical
Casting announced for national tour, premiering in Pittsburgh!
Benedum Center | November 16-21, 2021 | PNC Broadway in Pittsburgh
Casting has been announced for the North American Tour of SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical, making its premiere engagement at the Benedum Center on November 16-21, 2021. To purchase tickets, please visit TrustArts.org/Broadway.
The three actresses that share the role of musical icon Donna Summer are Brittny Smith as “Diva Donna,” Charis Gullage as “Disco Donna” and Amahri Edwards-Jones as “Duckling Donna.”
The cast of SUMMER also includes Porter Lee Anderson III as “Andrew Gaines,” John Guaragna as “Bruce Sudano,” and Christopher Lewis as “Neil Bogart.” The ensemble is comprised of Robert Peter Ayala, Layla Brent-Tompkins, Mia Davidson, Kayleigh Hegarty, Ciara Jones, Lily Kren, Marisel Lopez, Diane Meck, Francisco Risso, Lathan A. Roberts, Nissi Shalome, David Tanciar, Meridien Terrell, Emilee Theno, Stephen Vaught, Lamont Whitaker and Aubrey Young.
SUMMER features a book by Tony Award® nominee Colman Domingo, Robert Cary and Tony Award® winner Des McAnuff, with songs by Donna Summer, Giorgio Moroder, Paul Jabara and others. This new touring production is directed by Lauren L. Sobon and choreographed by Natalie Caruncho, based on the original direction by Tony Award® winner Des McAnuff and original choreography by Tony Award® winner Sergio Trujillo. Associate choreographer is Angelica Beliard.
Musical Supervision is by JP Meyer, Music Director is Erika R. Gamez, tour scenic design by Robert Andrew Kovach, based on the original scenic design by Tony Award® nominee Robert Brill, costumes by Tony Award® winner Paul Tazewell, lighting by Russell A. Thompson, sound by David Temby, projections by Chris McCleary. This tour is produced by APEX Touring.
Tickets for SUMMER are on sale now at TrustArts.org/Broadway or by calling 412-456-6666.
She was a girl from Boston with a voice from heaven, who shot through the stars from gospel choir to dance floor diva. But what the world didn’t know was how Donna Summer risked it all to break through barriers, becoming the icon of an era and the inspiration for every music diva who followed. With a score featuring more than 20 of Summer’s classic hits including “Love to Love You Baby,” “Bad Girls” and “Hot Stuff,” this electric experience is a moving tribute to the voice of a generation.
KEY CAST AND CREATIVE BIOS
Brittny Smith (Diva Donna) Theatrical credits include: Dreamgirls (Asia Tour), Step Afrika! (National/International tour) and regional productions of The Marvelous Wonderettes, The Color Purple and Chicago. TV/film: BET, Kraft, Stomp The Yard 2. Recording artist with Musicworld Entertainment/Matthew Knowles.
Charis Gullage (Disco Donna) Theatrical credits include: Holiday Inn (Linda), A Bronx Tale (Jane), Grease (Frenchy), Ragtime (Sarah), The Wiz (Dorothy), Sister Act and many more. Ms. Gullage performed with Beyoncé at the Superbowl XLVII Halftime Show.
Amahri Edwards-Jones (Duckling Donna) Theatrical credits include: Freaky Friday, Chicago, Mamma Mia!, Matilda, She Loves Me as well as dance and vocal performances on stages across the United States.
LAUREN L. SOBON (Director) has produced, directed, choreographed or cast over 120 productions in her 30-year career. Recent credits include Associate Producer for the 2020 national tour of Chicago, Artistic Producer/Casting Director for the 2020 national tour of Finding Neverland, 2019 international and 2018/19 national tours of The Wizard of Oz as well as the 2017 national tour of Pippin, the Musical. She was the Director and Artistic Producer for the 2016 national tour of Million Dollar Quartet, and Choreographer and Associate Producer for 2014 national tour Fiddler on the Roof. Additional national touring producing/casting credits: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, All Shook Up. Recent regional directing / choreography credits: Million Dollar Quartet, Honky Tonk Angels, Nunsense, Descendants, High School Musical, Shrek, A Christmas Carol, A Wonderful Life, How To Succeed…, and The Sound of Music.
NATALIE CARUNCHO (Choreographer) is thrilled to be working on Summer. Natalie was in the original Broadway company of On Your Feet! as the Dance Captain/ Swing. Subsequently, she has worked as the Associate Choreographer for the production, setting companies for the 1st National Tour, Holland, and London West End. She set On Your Feet! at the Broadway Palm & Dutch Apple Theatres. Favorite credits include: Flashdance (Associate Choreographer 2nd National Tour), In the Heights (Ensemble) and A Chorus Line (Diana Morales).
ANGELICA BELIARD (Associate Choreographer) is very excited to be working on Summer once more. Angelica was in the original Broadway company of Summer (Ensemble). Prior to, she made her Broadway debut with the company of On Your Feet! (Ensemble) and was last seen regionally in John Leguizamo’s new musical comedy Kiss My Aztec (Ensemble/Dance Captain). As an Afro-Latina, it is with immense pride and integrity to create art during such a fragile, but promising moment in time. Here’s to collaboration and expansion.
“THE AUDIENCE REACHES A FEVER PITCH.”
- Entertainment Weekly
“The audience craves it with an intensity I don’t recall ever seeing before.”
- Chicago Tribune
“Don’t miss it. A vibrant and sparkling homage to the queen of disco. It’s the perfect place to dance to your favorite disco hits by the diva!”
“Pure bliss. An ebullient era in music! It gives the trailblazing songstress her rightful place in pop culture.”
- The Hollywood Reporter
Broadway Across America (BAA) is part of the John Gore Organization family of companies, which includes Broadway.com, The Broadway Channel, BroadwayBox.com and Group Sales Box Office. Led by 14-time Tony-winning theater producer John Gore (Owner & CEO), BAA is the foremost presenter of first-class touring productions in North America, operating in 48 markets with over 400,000 subscribers. Presentations include Disney’s The Lion King, Wicked, The Book of Mormon, The Phantom of the Opera and Hamilton. Current and past productions include Ain’t Too Proud, Beautiful, Cats, Chicago, Dear Evan Hansen, Mean Girls, Moulin Rouge! and To Kill A Mockingbird.
The John Gore Organization is the leading developer, producer, distributor and marketer of Broadway theatre worldwide. Under the leadership of 14-time Tony-winning theater producer and owner John Gore, its family of companies includes Broadway Across America, Broadway.com, The Broadway Channel, BroadwayBox.com, and Group Sales Box Office. The company presents shows in 48 cities across North America as well as on Broadway, Off-Broadway, London’s West End, Japan, and China. It has won Tony Awards in every producing category as well as numerous other Drama League, Drama Desk and Olivier awards.