Tulsa Project Theatre is embarking on two new adventures this month: the opening of “Godspell,” a revival of the company’s production of this Stephen Schwartz musical derived from the Gospel of Matthew, and a new partnership with Tulsa Opera.
The partnership arose out of Tulsa Opera’s plans to construct a new 200-seat theater space at its headquarters, 1610 S. Boulder Ave. Construction on what will be called the Laven Sowell Theater is set to begin in June.
“We knew we wanted this theater space to be used year-round,” Tulsa Opera General Director Ken McConnell said when the new space was announced. “But we also knew that we wouldn’t be able to fill it with our own programming.”
Tulsa Project Theatre, the city’s only company affiliated with Actor’s Equity, moved into office space within the Tulsa Opera headquarters earlier this month.
“We see this really as a win-win situation,” said Heather Buffington, president of the Tulsa Project Theatre board of directors. “And I think it speaks well of the Tulsa arts community in general. There’s more and more collaboration and partnership among the various companies, which I think is what we all should be doing.”
Amber Whitlatch, Tulsa Project Theatre managing director, said, “There is power in numbers. We are seeing new partnerships and resource-sharing abound in Tulsa. Natural pairings like the Midwestern Theater Troupe and Heller Theatre Company seem stronger when combined. Philbrook and Tulsa Arts Fellowship is a match made in heaven. And we are confident that Tulsa Project Theatre and Tulsa Opera will become a force together.”
To mark the new partnership, as well as the theater company’s 10th anniversary, Tulsa Project Theatre and Tulsa Opera will host a fundraising event, “Leap of Faith,” on Feb. 29 at Tulsa Opera, 1610 S. Boulder Ave.
“We are doing two biblical-themed musicals this season, ‘Godspell’ and ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,’ so we decided to do an event with a tongue-in-cheek religious theme,” Whitlatch said. “We’re encouraging people to wear their most righteous, religious costumes if they wish.”
Tickets for “Leap of Faith” start at $29 and are available through eventbrite.com.
“Godspell” follows a group of modern-day young people brought together by a teacher in a Superman T-shirt as he teaches them through parables to better understand how God wants people to live — until one of the number betrays him.
The score includes the song “Day by Day,” which became a pop hit soon after the musical premiered in 1971. Bob Hendricks directs this production, which features Andrew Barker as Jesus and Jacob Edward Brockunier as Judas, with Alyssa Brown, Cristen Burdell, Kaley Jobe, Nash Wayne McQuarters, Lindsay Katherine Powell, Ben Rodriguez, Shannon Walsh and Thomas Farnan-Williams.
Performances: 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Feb. 14-15, and Feb. 21-22; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 16, and Feb. 23 at the Tulsa PAC, 110 E. Second St.
Tickets: $15-$35. 918-596-7111, tulsapac.com
Oklahoma native and Tony Award winner Kelli O’Hara will perform in concert at the Broken Arrow PAC.
O’Hara won the 2015 Tony Award for best actress in a musical for her performance in “The King and I,” a year in which fellow Oklahoman Kristin Chenoweth was also nominated for “On the Twentieth Century.” O’Hara has earned a total of seven Tony Award nominations, six of them for best actress in a musical. Her most recent nomination was for her performance in the Roundabout Theatre’s 2019 revival of Cole Porter’s “Kiss Me, Kate.”
In addition to her work on Broadway, O’Hara has also starred in the TV series “13 Reasons Why” and “The Accidental Wolf,” and guest starred on such shows as “Sex and the City 2,” “The Good Fight” and “Masters of Sex.”
A Tulsa native, O’Hara grew up in Elk City and attended the Oklahoma City University, where she studied under legendary voice teacher Florence Birdwell.
Performance: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, at the Broken Arrow PAC, 701 S. Main St., Broken Arrow
Tickets: $30-$70. 918-259-5778, or online at brokenarrowpac.com
‘Queens of Rock and Soul’
LaKisha Jones earned a place in the 2007 season of “American Idol” with an Aretha Franklin song, “Think,” and in the course of becoming one of the four finalists, performed Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing.”
Songs those two musical icons made famous, along with hits by Tina Turner, will make up “Queens of Rock and Soul,” which Jones will perform as the guest of the Signature Symphony at Tulsa Community College.
Since appearing on “American Idol,” Jones has recorded an album, “So Glad I’m Me,” and was cast in the 2005 revival of the musical “The Color Purple.” Jones originally had the ensemble role of Church Lady in the production, but in its final months, she was promoted to the featured role of Sofia, alternating performances with pop legend Chaka Khan.
Performances: 7:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Feb. 14-15, at the VanTrease PACE, 10300 E. 81st St.
Tickets: $36-$78. 918-595-7777, or online at signaturesymphony.org
‘A Doll’s House’ times two
The Tulsa Community College Department of Theatre is presenting Henrik Ibsen’s classic drama from 1879, “A Doll’s House,” in repertory with Lucas Hnath’s 2017 follow-up, “A Doll’s House, Part 2.”
Ibsen’s play, considered the Norwegian writer’s masterpiece, was considered shocking in its day, as it directly confronted the male-dominated society of the late 19th century.
The central character, Nora, chafes at the strictures society places on women to be nothing more than a “good wife and mother.” Nora, however, has come to realize that her marriage is a sham, that her husband is a moral coward and that true freedom and the chance for a real life lies just outside her house’s door.
Hnath’s play, which was nominated for eight Tony Awards in 2017, takes place some 15 years after Nora’s dramatic exit. Now a successful writer, Nora has returned to finalize her divorce from her husband and to confront those she left behind.
Performances: “A Doll’s House,” 8 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12, and Friday, Feb. 14; and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 16. “A Doll’s House, Part 2,” 8 p.m. Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 13, 15 and 16, at the VanTrease PACE, 10300 E. 81st St.
Tickets: $6-$10. 918-595-7777, tulsacc.edu