Thespians will make their long awaited return to the stage this summer as the Pacific Conservatory Theatre gears up for live shows under the stars at the outdoor Solvang Festival Theater.
PCPA will present “Together — A Musical Journey” from July 21 through Aug. 8 and “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill” from Aug. 19 through Sept. 5, both live on stage at the Solvang Festival Theater.
This will be the first time in over a year that a live audience will be welcomed to the outdoor stands of the Solvang Festival Theater, and after the hiatus, the actors are itching for their curtain call.
“Eager is not a strong enough word,” Mark Booher, the artistic director of PCPA, said during a virtual announcement on Tuesday. “We’ve been yearning to get back in direct contact with our audience.”
The theater’s inaugural summer show, “Together,” is a theatrical concert that will celebrate the chance to be together after spending a year apart. The show, which is an original concert exclusively created for PCPA audiences, features a collection of popular tunes such as “If You Knew My Story,” “You Will Be Found,” “Slap that Bass” and “Can’t Stop the Feeling.”
“After more than a year apart, ‘Together’ is a celebration of being able to share experiences through stories and song,” Mr. Booher said. “It’s a theatrical concert that revels in the simple fact that life is better when we live it together.”
The second show of the summer, “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill,” will feature actress Karole Foreman as the legendary music artist Billie Holiday. The show portrays one of the late artist’s final concerts in a Philadelphia bar just four months before her death. “Lady Day” paints a portrait of Ms. Holiday through more than a dozen musical numbers and humorous memories of the legendary singer.
“At a time in America when race, gender and the opioid crisis are being discussed loudly on a daily basis, Billie Holiday’s life and career are a great example of what it means to not just survive, but to triumph in the face of lifelong abuse and struggle,” Mr. Booher said.
Tickets for both shows will go on sale June 8 and can be purchased at pcpa.org or by calling the box office at 805-922-8313.
The Solvang theater will follow current public health restrictions for mask wearing and social distancing, and it may require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for those interested in attending.