One more time

Carissa Isom, center, works with the cast of “Encore!,” a new production at the Cooper Center for Creative Arts. The production celebrates the music, dancing and theater of Broadway.

Courtesy photo

A new production at the Cooper Center for Creative Arts celebrates the best of Broadway with singing, dancing and theater.

“Encore!” is scheduled to play at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 16-18 at the Cooper Center, 1174 N. Fourth St.

Tickets are $5.

The production features scenes and musical numbers from Tony Award-winning Broadway shows. Jonathan Sell, who is directing part of the show, said the production will take the form of an awards show, with a narrator providing an introduction and short history of each piece before singers, dancers and actors take the stage.

“We wanted to pick a show that would incorporate all the talents that we have here — dancing, acting and vocalists,” he said.

The 20-person cast includes students and staff members at Ark Regional Services. The Cooper Center is part of Ark’s education program, offering classes in creative arts for people with intellectual disabilities. The group has been rehearsing since the start of their fall season in late August.

Choreographer and stage manager Jessica Rodman said studying the creative arts was a good avenue for Ark clients to learn new skills and enrich their current talents.

As well, skills learned through the creative arts can transfer into daily living.

“Whatever happens in theater, you can absolutely translate to real-life situations,” she said. “What happens in movement definitely helps with activities of daily living, but it’s also to enrich and to expand knowledge.”

Rodman said audience members can expect an escape from everyday life through samples of Broadway classics such as “Fiddler on the Roof,” “West Side Story,” “Hamilton,” “Rent,” “Les Miserables,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Jersey Boys,” “Death of a Salesman,” “The Odd Couple,” “Waiting for Godot” and more.

“There are a lot of pieces and a lot of acts,” she said.

Beer and wine will be for sale before the show and during intermission. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the Cooper Center Box Office.

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