Two anticipated box-office hits loom in March, at Manoa Valley Theatre and Diamond Head Theatre.

The theaters have unveiled their casts for “Tick, Tick…Boom!” and “La Cage Aux Folles.”


Before there was “Rent,” there was “Tick, Tick…Boom!,” an autobiographical and aspirational musical on the artistic struggles of composer-playwright Jonathan Larson, then approaching age 30 without a production bearing his name.

He hustles – down to the wire  — to create his first musical, “Superbia,” but gets stressed out because he can’t complete the show’s final tune. His workshop session is a sellout, but there are no takers.  Playwright Stephen Sondheim supports him, with valid advice: start writing your second show (which turns out to be “Rent,” his signature production).

But he died on the night before its off-Broadway premiere, so “Boom!” explores the earlier months and years of his theatrical anxieties.

Taj Gutierrez

The show will make its Hawaii debut at Manoa Valley Theatre, where it will be staged March 9 to 26.

Taj Gutierrez heads the cast as Jonathan Larson; he last appeared as Judas in DHT’s “Jesus Christ Superstar” last year. Other leads in the cast are, Kimo Kaona as Michael, Larson’s buddy, and  Emily North as Susan, his girlfriend; alternating actors are Moku Durant as Jon, Ian Severino as Michael and Bianca Tubolino as Susan.

Moku Durant

Mathias Maas is director and choreographer, Jenny Shiroma is musical director, David Heulitt is assistant director, Mira Fey is technical director, Elyse Takashige is set designer,  Willie Sabel is scenic art director, La Tanya Faamausili-Siliato is prop designer, Hope Laidlaw is lighting director, Amber Lehua Baker is costume designer,  Lisa Ponce de Leon is hair and makeup designer,  Lock Lynch is sound designer and engineer, Sarah Velasco is assistant sound designer, Janine Myers is master electrician, Taylor Bair is stage manager, and  Maile Alau is intimacy coordinator.

Curtain time is 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Tickets: $42, adults; $37, seniors and military, $24, youths 25 and younger. Reserved seating.

Reservations:   (808) 988-6131 or online at www.manoavalleytheatre.com


Some boys will be girls in “La Cage Aux Folles,” the Broadway musical that gave the world the “I Am What I Am” anthem, which opens March 24 at Diamond Head Theatre.

The show is about Georges, manager of a drag show nightclub starring Albin, his long-time romantic partner. Complications arise when Georges’ son, Jean-Michel, brings home his fiancee’s super-conservative parents to meet them amid the glittering masquerade of men portraying women.

Guy Merola

“La Cage” is based on a film and stage version with the same title, with book by Harvey Fierstein and music by Jerry Herman, based on the original play by Jean Poiret. “The Best of Times” also has been a hit.

The cast features Guy Merola as Georges, Andrew Sakaguchi as Albin,  Charles Ho as Jean-Michel, Nanea Allen as Anne, Aaron Miko as Jacob, Shari Lynn as Jacqueline, Fedrico Biven as Mons. Renaud, Suzanne Maloney as Mme. Renaud,  Joe Martyak as Dindon, Kim Anderson as Marie Dindon and Jake Wolf as Francis.

Andew Sakaguchi

The Cagelles include Jack Dia, Marcus Stanger,  Genesis Kaeo,  Gabriel Ryan-Kern, Jared Duldulao,  Andrew Simmons,  Brittany Lewis,  Anastasia Chrysler, and Heather Taylor.

Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 3 p.m. Saturdays; and 4 p.m. Sundays.

Tickets: $27,  $37 and $52;  no senior, military, or student discounts. Call (808) 733-0374 or visit www.diamondheadtheatre.com

Broadway grosses, week ending Feb. 19

With the looming closure of “The Phantom of the Opera,” the continues to draw first-time or repeat viewers, making the Andrew Lloyd-Webber classic the longest-running musical on Broadway, the chart-topper.

The top seven grossing shows last week:

1 — “The Phantom of the Opera,: $2.562 million,

2 — “Hamilton,” $2.000 million.

3 — “The Lion King,” $1.929 mlllion.

4 — “Funny Girl,” $1.833 million.

5 — :”MJ,” $1.823 million

6 — “Wicked,” $1.791 million.

7 — “Moulin Rouge,” 1.590 million.

The complete rundown of the shows, courtesy The Broadway League:

And that’s Show Biz. …


Leave a Reply