By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The classic MGM movie musical “Singin’ in the Rain’ is coming to the stage in Bay Ridge, courtesy of Narrows Community Theater (NCT), which is presenting a stage version of the beloved film.
The show, which is being presented by special arrangement with Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures, Inc., opens at the Fort Hamilton Post Theater, located on the U.S. Army Garrison at Fort Hamilton, on May 9.
Like the movie, the stage version of “Singin’ in the Rain” is set in 1920's Hollywood during the early days of sound films, a time when "talkies" destroyed the careers of many Hollywood legends whose vocal abilities could not make the transition from silent films. The screenplay was written by Betty Comden and Adolf Green.
The NCT's rendition remains true to the beloved film with its high-octane dancing, hilarious plot and familiar tunes by Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed like “Singin’ in the Rain” and “Make ‘Em Laugh,” according to the theater troupe’s spokesman.
The show is directed and choreographed by David Paul Kidder. Sean P. Cameron is the musical director
The NCT production stars Michael Santora as the silent-screen swashbuckler “Don Lockwood,” the role played on screen by the legendary Gene Kelly; Justin Ryan as his sidekick “Cosmos Brown,” who was portrayed by Donald O’Connor; Marissa Giglio as the yet to be discovered “Kathy Selden,” a part originated by Debbie Reynolds; and Maggie McGuire as “Lina Lamont,” the glamorous movie star whose hilariously nasal voice threatens to end her Hollywood career. Jean Hagen played Lina in the film and earned an Academy Award nomination.
The performance schedule is as follows: Fridays and Saturdays, May 9, 10, 16 and 17 at 8 p.m. and Sundays, May 11 and 18 at 2 p.m. at the Fort Hamilton Post Theater. Due to construction at the military base, vehicles entering the fort must use the Seventh Avenue gate. But both the Seventh Avenue gate and the fort’s main entrance, on Fort Hamilton Parkway and 101st Street, will be open for pedestrian traffic. A photo ID is required to enter the fort.
Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for senior citizens and students under 21 and $10 for children 12 and under. For reservations call 718-482-3173, email NCT@NCTheaterNY.com, or order tickets online at www.NarrowsCommunityTheater.com.
NCT was in the news recently when the Rhapsody Players, a Bay Ridge-based singing group, announced plans to perform a benefit concert on to raise money for the Betty Kash Memorial Scholarship Fund, a program established by the theater company to award grants to eighth graders interested in the theater and performing arts. Kash, who died two years ago, had been a member of Narrows Community Theater for many years. After Kash’s death, the Narrows Community Theater started the scholarship fund.
John Heffernan, a founder of the Rhapsody Players, said the singing group’s members wanted to pay tribute to Kash. “All of us in the Rhapsody Players have roots in NCT. A lot of us met years ago in a production of ‘Guys and Dolls.’ And we all loved Betty Kash. She was a big supporter of ours,” Heffernan told the Brooklyn Eagle. The concert took place on April 26.
NCT was established 40 years ago and is dedicated to bringing musicals and plays to Brooklyn audiences at affordable ticket prices.