The professional regional premiere of the musical ONCE ON THIS ISLAND opens at PIONEER THEATRE COMPANY (PTC) on FEBRUARY 21, 2020 and runs through MARCH 7, 2020. Tickets for this production can be purchased by calling 801-581-6961 or by visiting pioneertheatre.org.
“Two different worlds/Never meant to meet The grand hommes with their pale brown skin and their French ways,owners of the land and masters of their own fatesAnd the peasants, black as night, eternally at the mercy of the wind and sea, who pray constantly… to the gods”
A Caribbean fable set in French Antilles, Once On This Island tells the tale of two young lovers from two contrasting worlds, and of the Island Gods who are forever entwined in their fates. Ti Moune, an orphaned peasant girl, rescues and falls in love with Daniel, a grand homme (wealthy) boy from the other side of the island, and as is evident from his light brown skin, he also has come from another community. Daniel must soon choose whether to follow his heart or his home. Unbeknownst to the dark-skinned Ti Moune, the gods who preside over the island make a bet with one another over which is stronger, love or death, the stakes being her life.
TYLA COLLIER portrays Ti Moune, the chosen one of the gods. Collier’s background include performing in the Off-Broadway musical Sistas the Musical and Till. JORDAN ALEXANDER plays Daniel Beauxhomme, the rich boy on the other side of the tracks. Alexander’s background includes performing Peter Pan, Oklahoma!, and Grease at Pittsburgh CLO.
Mama Euralie, portrayed by CICILY DANIELS, is the symbolic mother of the island denizens. Daniels returns to PTC after 2017’s Newsies. Her Broadway credits include Once On This Island, Disney’s The Little Mermaid, All Shook Up, Rent, and she has been on television in “Mozart in the Jungle,” “Boardwalk Empire,” “Ugly Betty,” and Across the Universe. DERRICK COBEY portrays Tonton Julian. He appeared on Broadway in Kiss Me, Kate and The Scottsboro Boys.
The gods of the island, Agwé, Erzulie, Asaka, and Papa Ge are portrayed by: TERANCE REDDICK, KRISTIAN ESPIRITU, GALYANA CASTILLO, and PAUL-JORDAN JANSEN. Reddick was on Broadway in Les Misèrables, and has performed with his PopOpera group, “Destino.” Espiritu was recently in the Ensemble for the first National Tour of School of Rock and Off-Broadway at The Public, the New York Musical Festival, and on television in “Younger” and “Ray Donovan.” Castillo returns to PTC after last season’s La Cage aux Folles – Concert Production. She has performed with the National Tours of Elf the Musical and Fame. Jansen returns to PTC after 2016’s The Count of Monte Cristo and Sting’s The Last Ship. He has performed at the Paramount Theatre, where he received a Jeff Award for his role as Sweeney Todd in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
MARQELL EDWARD CLAYTON portrays Armand, Daniel Beauxhomme’s father, and has been seen in the Pre-Broadway production of Ain’t Too Proud, in the film Play With Beethoven, and on television on “Conan.” ALANNA SAUNDERS portrays Andrea, Daniel Beauxhomme’s betrothed. She has appeared on Broadway in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the National Tour of Into the Woods, and on television in NBC’s “Peter Pan Live!” as Tiger Lily.
AVA LYNN SMITH portrays Little Ti Moune. She was seen locally as Amanda Thripp in Matilda at Hale Center Theatre in Sandy, Utah.
GERRY MC INTYRE directs and choreographs this production. McIntyre performed in the original 1990 Broadway cast of Once On This Island and has also performed on Broadway in Anything Goes, Chicago, Uptown It’s Hot, and Joseph….Dreamcoat. He has worked at major theatres throughout the United States including the Lions Theatre and York Theater (Off-Broadway), Virginia Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Connecticut Repertory, Gateway Playhouse, Ogunquit Playhouse, Alliance Theater, Le Petit Theatre (New Orleans), Pasadena Playhouse, and Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma. His television credits include “The Rosie O’Donnell Show,” “Major Dad,” and “Designing Women.”
Guest musical director TOM GRIFFIN returns to PTC after musically directing Once last season. Other PTC productions include Newsies, Oliver!, It Happened One Christmas, Peter and the Starcatcher, Elf–The Musical, and A Christmas Carol: The Musical. He musically directed the west coast and Los Angeles premieres of The Last Five Years, Sweet Charity, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and The Music Man; the west coast premiere of Spitfire Grill; Annie; West Side Story; The Scarlet Pimpernel and Bye Bye Birdie.
Oregon-based DANIEL MEEKER is the production’s scenic designer, returning to PTC after designing the sets for Oslo, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Women in Jeopardy!, Outside Mullingar, and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.
YOON BAE returns to PTC as costume designer from last season’s Once. She is an award-winning designer working internationally, including London’s West End, Norway, Korea, Japan, as well as in the USA. She has designed in London’s West End for productions of Gone with the Wind, Birdsong, Skellig, Equus, and Three Thousand Troubled Threads (Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh International Festival).
DRISCOLL R. OTTO returns as lighting designer. Otto designed The Lion in Winter at PTC last season, and recently designed lighting and projections for Iolanta at Chicago Opera Theatre. His design work has appeared in The Metropolitan Opera, the Utah Opera, Opera Philadelphia, amongst many others.
AARON HUBBARD designs sound for this production and EARON NEALEY designs wigs.
PIONEER THEATRE COMPANY (PTC): Now celebrating its 58th season, the award-winning PTC is Utah’s Premiere Professional Theatre and a leading arts organization of the West. Led by Artistic Director Karen Azenberg and Managing Director Christopher Massimine, PTC promotes community-building and education through presenting world-class productions; developing new socially resonant and universal work; hosting talks, lectures, and workshops that engage a versatile and inclusive demographic, while celebrating diversity in culture and society; and serving as the connecting bridge between art and scholarship as an affiliate of the University of Utah.