ROCKLAND COUNTY, NEW YORK – June 30, 2022 – Penguin Rep Theatre, the Stony Point-based nonprofit professional theatre, kicks off its summer season with BREATH & IMAGINATION: THE STORY OF ROLAND HAYES, a musical play by Daniel Beaty about trailblazing African-American vocalist Roland Hayes, starting Friday, July 8, artistic director Joe Brancato announced today.
Before Paul Robeson and Marian Anderson, there was Roland Hayes. Born the son of a slave, Roland turned adversity into opportunity, and, at his peak in the 1920s, was the highest paid singer in the world.
“BREATH & IMAGINATION is joyous and inspirational,” says Mr. Brancato, “and soars with spirituals and operatic arias as it traces Hayes’ journey from a plantation in Georgia to performing for royalty in Europe.”
Under the direction of Geovonday Jones, who most recently staged THE HIGH CAPTAIN at The Tank and Brooklyn College’s new play festival, the cast includes Rosalind Brown (as Angel Mo’), Jesse Means (as Roland Hayes), and Ben Rauch (as The Man).
Ms. Brown, a winner of the Vivian Robinson AUDELCO Award for Lead Actress, originated roles in FOOTLOOSE and ONE MO’ TIME on Broadway.
Mr. Means, a recent resident of Stony Point, appeared on Broadway in SHOW BOAT and in the national tours of CAROUSEL and FIVE GUYS NAMED MOE.
Mr. Rauch’s acting credits include BIG BANG THEORY (TV) and JERSEY BOYS (film). He is also a singer/songwriter and his last single THE EMOJI SONG won an American Songwriting Award, a USA Songwriting Competition Award for Best Comedy Song, The Hollywood Songwriting Competition and four Global Music Awards for Best Male Vocalist, Best Lyrics/Songwriter, Best Song, and Best Music Video.
The creative team for BREATH & IMAGINATION includes scenic designer Jon DeGaetano, costume designer Antonio Consuegra (assistant costume designer, FUNNY GIRL on Broadway), lighting designer Todd Wren, sound designer Max Silverman, and properties designer Buffy Cardoza.
BREATH & IMAGINATION will be presented through July 24. Performances are scheduled Thursdays at 7 p.m., Fridays at 7:30 p.m. Saturdays (2 shows) at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m.
There is a specially discounted matinee scheduled at 2 p.m. on Friday, July 8. A post-performance discussion among artistic director Joe Brancato, the actors and audience will follow the performance on Friday, July 15.
Before the 4 p.m. show on Saturday, July 16, there will be a complimentary tasting catered by Big Daddy’s Home Plate BBQ of West Haverstraw.
Tickets to BREATH & IMAGINATION are priced at $39 (including facility fee and service charge). Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more and young people (30 and under).
Performances take place at Penguin’s intimate, 108-seat theatre, located at 7 Crickettown Road. “The converted barn, circa 1880, has never been more inviting” (The New York Times). Says Mr. Horn, “it’s theatre so close you can feel it, with comfy upholstered seats and no seat more than 30 feet from the stage.” The theatre is air conditioned, handicapped accessible, equipped with assistive listening devices, and has plenty of free parking.
During its closure due to COVID-19, Penguin made physical modifications to its venue to make the theatergoing experience safer and more comfortable. Air filtration was upgraded, air circulation modified to ensure increased exchange of inside and outside air, and high-intensity UVC light installed inside the ductwork to remove airborne and surface contaminants.
To order tickets or for further information, visit Penguin Rep’s website at www.penguinrep.org or call 845-786-2873.
BREATH & IMAGINATION
July 8 – July 24
by DANIEL BEATY
Directed by GEOVONDAY JONES
Starring ROSALIND BROWN, JESSE MEANS, BEN RAUCH
Before Paul Robeson and Marian Anderson, there was trailblazing African-American vocalist Roland Hayes. Born the son of a slave, Roland turned adversity into opportunity, and, at his peak in the 1920s, was the highest paid singer in the world. This inspirational musical play soars with spirituals and operatic arias as it traces Hayes’ journey from a plantation in Georgia to performing for royalty in Europe.