New York style play coming to Doudna

Ryan Meyer, Staff Reporter

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The New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players are bringing their original show “I’ve Got a Little TWIST” to the Doudna Fine Arts Center on Jan. 17 at 7:30 p.m.

“To those who know and love Gilbert and Sullivan, the truth is that Gilbert and Sullivan were the first writers of what we now know as ‘musical theatre,’” said Dan Crews, the director of programming at Doudna, via press release.

The New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players’ website describes their ensemble as “New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players is a professional repertory company giving vitality to the living legacy of Gilbert and Sullivan through performance and education.

Written, directed, and emceed by David Auxier, “I’ve Got a Little TWIST” features professional Broadway singers putting a “twist” on Gilbert and Sullivan staples and recognizable Broadway standards.

The show consists of six award-winning singers clad in suits and ties, accompanied by longtime arranger and pianist Mark York. It takes on a cabaret feel because of Auxier’s constant presence on stage, talking to and interacting with the audience.

It has been successfully touring for a decade now, and Friday’s show at Eastern is the first of this touring season.

The success is due to a showing of “I’ve Got a Little TWIST” that took place at an international conference in New York, which ended in NYG&SP taking it on tour that season, and every year ever since.

“This is a way for us to bring a little bit of New York City to Charleston, Illinois for an evening,” Crews said.

“It opens the door to a little bit of history, a little bit of grand performance by professional artists,” Crews added.

David Wannen, a producer and actor in “I’ve Got a Little TWIST” said that the show had a very New York-centric feel.

“The show’s through line kind of follows each character. Each person is represented by their voice type at the beginning… It kind of follows each one of them through their journey in this little 90-minute show. And somewhere along the line, they deliver a very personalized expression to the audience,” Wannen said.

Wannen added that the different skits bring a lot of variety.

Tickets for the performance are $20 for general admission, $15 for senior citizens, and $10 for students. They can be purchased at the Doudna Fine Arts Center Box Office or online at www.doudnatix.com.

Ryan Meyer can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]