By Allan Knee
Directed by Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill
Choreography by William Soleau
A collaboration with State Street Ballet
June 8–25, 2017
Ensemble Theatre Company closes the 2016-17 Season with a magical romance set in Manhattan’s Lower East Side in the 1910’s. Desperate for an escape from his solitary life as a meatpacker and dishwasher, Henry places a classified ad in the newspaper in hopes of landing a dance partner. When the shy Anna answers his ad, Henry’s dreams of becoming a ballroom dancer are put to the test… but with each tango and foxtrot they are drawn closer together, setting off an unlikely romance. A fascinating blend of theater and dance from playwright Allen Knee, author of Little Women and The Man Who Was Peter Pan — the inspiration for the Academy Award-winning film, Finding Neverland.
Sponsored by: Leatrice Luria and Bob and Leah Temkin
2016-17 Season sponsored by The Stephen and Carla Hahn Foundation.
“With charm and grace, [Syncopation] dances into the audience's hearts.” Detroit Free Press
Syncopation premiered in 1999 and received an American Theater Critics Award for Best New Play. The play has been performed at numerous regional theatres throughout the country, and was originally slated for a Broadway debut in 2004.
SARA BROPHY(Anna) is delighted to make her Ensemble Theatre Company debut! She's been on Broadway in Amazing Grace, off-Broadway in Iron Curtain, and traveled across the great United States, both on tour with Damn Yankees! (Lola), and at several regional theatres. Some favorites include Singin' in the Rain (Kathy), Sister Act, and Chicago (Velma). Ms Brophy loves bringing new works and characters to life, both on stage and film (In the Night (Laura)).
ZANDER MEISNER (Henry) is thrilled to be doing such great theatre in this awesome town. West coast audiences may recognize him from Once at the Pantages in Hollywood while on its First National Tour, and in Annie at the Kodak (Dolby) Theatre in Hollywood while on its twenty-third National tour. Favorite theatres: Northlight and Apple Tree Theatre (Chicago), Kitchen Theatre, Drilling Company, New Ohio Theatre, Engeman Theatre (NY), several NYC fringe productions, and three national tours. Recipient of the Denver Post Ovation Award for Best Actor in a Musical. An accomplished actor, musician, songwriter, and educator, he has been honored to perform onstage with Glen Hansard, and was recently profiled in the Wall Street Journal. Indiana Grad. AEA. zandermeisner.com.
- Book Club, Jun 14, 2017, 5:30 - 6:30pm: Scripts are now available for checkout at the Santa Barbara Public Library, 40 East Anapamu Street. Join other theatregoers for a lively discussion about the play from a literary and dramatic perspective. FREE!
- Pre-Show Talk, Jun 14 & 21, 2017 at 7:15 pm: Join us in the courtyard of The New Vic for an informative and insightful discussion about the play before you see it, sure to enhance your theatrical experience.
- Martini Night, Jun 16, 2017 at 7:15pm, performance at 8:00pm: Free to ticket holders. Come early to enjoy a complimentary martini and mingle before the show.
- Talk Back, Jun 22, 2017: Meet the cast after the show and discuss the production.
"Syncopation, which runs June 8-25 at Ensemble Theatre Company’s (ETC) New Vic, takes the already considerable challenge of a two-person show and raises the stakes by adding dance to the acting." Read more of the Santa Barbara Independent preview.
"Ensemble Theatre Company has focused the 2016/17 season on stories of interesting couples, from Shakespeare's power-hungry MacBeths to Tennessee Williams' Baby Doll and Archie Lee, a forced marriage with a faucet-fixing interloper. The final piece this season, Allan Knee's Syncopation, features two distinct couples: Anna and Henry, the main characters who are learning to ballroom dance together; and a narrative told through the interlacing of theatre and dance." Read more of the Broadway World preview.
"A tuneful nod to dance and lifestyles of America’s early 1900s is making toes tap and audiences clap at the Ensemble Theatre Company’s “Syncopation,” on stage at The New Vic through June 25." Read the Ventura County Star review
"In this breezy and sparkling production of Allan Knee’s original play, the actors perform all manner of entertaining routines, from difficult period dances to equally challenging physical portrayals of awkwardness, humility, and even high-spirited fun." Read the Santa Barbara Independent review
"The production is directed by Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill with effortless poise, skill, and pace; and Choreographed by William Soleau with ever increasing dexterity and fluidity..." Read the CASA Magazine review