Cast for “Calder – The Musical”

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Klein & Alvarez Productions, LLC proudly announces the cast of “Calder,The Musical.”

Alexander Calder-Logan Moore
Thalia the Muse/Narrator-Maggie Held
Young “Sandy” Calder-Mitchell Wray/ Ian Gamble
Peggy Calder-Jordan Pecar/Piper Murphy
Louisa Calder-Virginia Vought
Nanette Calder/Ensemble-Emily McDuffee
Stirling Calder/Piet Mondrian/Ensemble-Jake McDuffee
Zelda Fitzgerald/Dancer/Ensemble-Chelsea Anderson
Josephine Baker/Dancer/Ensemble-Ashley Saunders
Gertrude Stein/NYC Times Editor/Dancer/Ensemble-Christa Runion
Dancer/ensemble/Trapeze Artist/Acrobat-Erin Fiandt

Congratulations to all of the cast members! And remember the show dates for the IndyFringe production of this brand new show will be Aug. 18th-28th 2016.

Addendum: I just wanted to add some important info and clarification given to me by Tom Alvarez, who is the lyricist for this show. – First of all, the dates above are the dates for the 2016 IndyFringe and of course every Fringe show gets a total of 6 shows during those dates – Calder’s  six dates are TBA. Also, I am pleased to note this: Tom informed me that Klein and Alvarez Productions is planning a full-length offering of “Calder – The Musical” – date and venue info is also TBA.

Even more on “Calder, the Musical”

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Calder logoHere is a second, more thorough “press release” from Klein & Alvarez Productions, which is putting together a new musical which will be a part of the 2016 IndyFringe next August and will subsequently be produced as a full-blown musical production sometime in the future. I wrote about this event in a previous post: here.

“Klein & Alvarez Productions” will be holding open auditions for roles in our original musical production of “Calder, the Musical!” It is based on the life of artist and sculptor, Alexander Calder, and how he brought art to life. This show will bring his many imaginative works to life onstage through dance and song while also depicting his life.
Auditions: Theatre on the Square on Mass Avenue
*Saturday March 19th from 10 AM to 4PM and on Sunday March 20th 10 AM-4PM. Dance 2-4 PM
*Monday March 21st 6 to 8 pm.

Show dates: Indy Fringe Theatre Fest Aug. 18th-28th, 2016.

Go to to reserve a spot.

We are looking for:
*Alexander “Sandy” Calder-(7 to 10 yrs old approx.)
*Alexander Calder-Adult version (20s to early 40s)
*Louisa Calder-Calder’s wife (20s to 30s)
*Peggy Calder-sister (8 to 14)
*Calliope the Muse/Narrator-comic role, woman or man (any age)
*Monsieur Marquis-Ringmaster of the Circus-(any age)
*Stirling Calder-Calder Father (30’s-50s)
*Nanette Calder-Calder’s Mother (30s-50s)
*6 Dancers/Singers/Actors (Ensemble) (Choreography by Mariel Greenlee) Musical theatre, jazz, tap dancing, modern
We will also be paying all actors and dancers.
*Dance Auditions from 2 to 4 PM

*Please have a short monologue that shows off your acting ability and a short 1 to 2 minute song to sing. Resume or head shots also are welcome if you have them.
Character Descriptions:
*Young Alexander Calder-“Sandy” (7 to 10 years old) -Little bit eccentric, bright, sings, cute kid, talented, passionate, imaginative, curious, likes to tinker and build in his workshop with wire and found materials, is bullied for being so ‘different.” Solo song and ensemble

*Alexander Calder-(adult male-20s to 40s in age) Baritone/low tenor lead singing voice (many songs), charismatic, artistic, colorful, dresses in red often, the same traits as Sandy the boy, “a big kid,” ambitious, free spirited, sometimes given to mumbling his thoughts, playful, driven, creates art when faced with hardships, a ton of a man, handsome, dark features, average build.This character sings the most songs. He creates a world of art that serves as the theme of the show, the power of imagination, and to create a world without evil, his aim is to use art to promote peace, hope, and harmony in an often troubled and dark world.

*Louisa Calder-Alexander’s wife-20s to early 40s in age) Elegant, beautiful woman, dresses very chic, sweet, supports Alexander, his ‘rock’ in a way, plays the accordion, fun loving. She also sings a few songs, one duet with Alexander, alto or soprano range.

*Calliope” the Muse-(20s to 40s in age) (male or female) more alto/belty range singing role, she is brassy, comedic, sarcastic, campy, and serves as the narrator. She sings in many songs and helps to carry the story along with her physical humor.. Many solos and part of the ensemble numbers.

*Peggy Calder-(7 to 13 years old) Alexander’s older sister, sings, sweet, protective of her brother, Sandy makes art for her when they are children. She is always there for him. Solos and part of the ensemble numbers.

^Monsieur/Madame Marquis the Ringmaster-Dances/Sings (male or female) (20s to 40s in age) Sings a few songs/solos, and is featured in the jazzy circus number, “That’s For Sure.” Mysterious, sexy, jazzy, intriguing, a showman, host of the party character. Also part of ensemble and will double as other roles in disguise.

*”Rigolout” the Strong Man-(20s to early 40s) -male, sings, baritione or tenor range, sexy, good physique, dashing, showman, also might include some dancing in group, production numbers. Mainly ensemble role.

*Nanette Calder- (20’s to 40’s) in age) Alexander’s mother, a painter, sweet-loving woman that supports her son and his artistic attributes. alto or soprano range-sings a few songs, ensemble also.

*Stirling Calder-Alexander’s father (20s to 40s in age) -Also artistic, he is a sculptor, struggling artist early on, but fairly successful later in life. He supports his son, strong personality, but wants him to become something rational, a mechanical engineer. baritone or low tenor range, sings with Nanette and ensemble.

*Ensemble Dancers/Singers will serve as chorus as well and smaller needed roles. (Many of these roles will be used for the full production later in 2016, not Fringe Festival. Fringe festival will consist of a cast of approx. 12 cast members. Many ensembles roles will be doubled or shared. Must be versatile. Strong actor/singer/dancers.

Minor and Ensemble Roles:

Pablo PIcasso

Zelda Fitgerald

Josephine Baker

Gerturde Stein

Marcel Duchamp

Calamity the Clown

Lion Tamer



Bella the Café Owner

Museum Curator

Ship Engineer/Big Boss

Newspaper Editor

Ringling Brothers-John and Charles

Bearded Lady

Museum Exhibit Guests

Keep an eye out for this upcoming happening: a new musical!

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I feel compelled to write about a conversation I had at IRT the other night with an old acquaintance of mine, Tom Alvarez. As we chatted in the cabaret just before seeing The Mystery of Irma Vep, Tom told me about a project he is working on – a new musical which will be presented as a short one hour piece at next summer’s IndyFringe. The plan is to subsequently expand that into a full length Broadway style musical for later production.

This new musical is being put together under the working title “Calder: The Musical” and Tom is collaborating on the project with a musician friend,  Dustin Klein, who joined our conversation later. They both spoke excitedly about the process of creating a show which includes forming a corporation, finding funding, plans for work-shopping the project as well as having an upcoming appearance on WISH-TV 8’s morning program Indy Style next Thursday (2/21/16) at 9 am.


Dustin Klein (right) and Tom Alvarez, collaborators of “Calder: The Musical”

A little about the subject matter – Alexander Calder, the American sculptor known as the originator of the mobile and other mechanized pieces originally worked as a mechanical engineer, but he had a life-changing experience aboard a ship which launched him into his remarkable and prolific artistic career. The musical intends to bring his life in art to life as art.

It won’t be until March that any opportunity for local performers will become available when auditions for the work-shop version of the show are held. I understand that from this working cast, the cast for the local premiere of the show will likely be formed. I’ll try to keep you informed – stay tuned.

PS – you can read more about the project here and here .

Photo by Crowes Eye Photography

“The Dealer Smiles” at iNDYfRINGE

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Last evening, Mrs K and I made our second rare trek out to Mass Ave’s theatre district to take in our friends, Larry Adams and Jaime Johnson, in their play – The Dealer Smiles at iNDYfRINGE. My regular readers may recall that I caught wind of a version this show over a year ago in June 2012, when I finally watched a video of the show which the playwright had sent me, ( and was struck by it’s form and message. The same readers may also recall the successful run the show had at Westfield Playhouse earlier this year, which I wrote about last April ( Seeing it live, shared with other audience members, was a treat and a revelation.

After the Westfield show, the guys planned on expanding the show, reworking some of the angles and ideas, and taking it to iNDYfRINGE 13. Between last April and now, the freshened script was written and rewritten, rehearsals took place, and I was honored to be asked to be included as a sort of ad hoc director, to help stage and iron out the production. All the hard work has certainly paid off.

Last night’s opening show took place before a full house at the Theatre on the Square’s smaller venue (so “sold out” = 50+ audience members) and was a solid success. The piece has grown into an especially smart, very funny, sensitive and moving offering. I realize that I have lost my objectivity now that I have had a hand in this production, but I must say – Larry Adams (who, when he is not writing plays or performing in one, is a family physician in Zionsville) has written an extremely compelling play – taking on mammoth-sized ideas about life, death, the here-after, God, and our relationship to him, and has packaged it in such an appealing, concise, entertaining and mind-sharpening script – I feel I cannot tout it, and this production of it, strongly enough. EVERYONE should see it. I hope all the many fringers who took a chance seeing this show last night will provide the word-of-mouth advertising enthusiasm that this show deserves.

Jaime Johnson (left in both photos) and Larry Adams star in "The Dealer Smiles" at INDYFRINGE13

Jaime Johnson (left in both photos) and Larry Adams star in “The Dealer Smiles” at INDYFRINGE13

Jaime Johnson is especially adroit in the role of Josh, a man in a Spiderman shirt who wants you to believe he is the Christ. His comic skills, with wonderful body language and facial expressions, fill the character and make him the unlikeliest of saviors. Larry, as the recently divorced Matt, is a wonderful foil for Jaime’s talents, while adding his own well-honed approach to the role, especially in the dramatic side of the story. The result is a well-balanced and, dare I say again, enlightening experience for the audience.

My truest hope is that this show will be recognized for what it is, and will be featured by other reviewers as a highlight of this year’s edition of iNDYfRINGE. I hope YOU will take the time to go experience this show.

The Dealer Smiles continues with 5 more showings. They are scheduled:
Sunday, Aug 18 – 7:30pm
Tuesday, Aug 20 – 9:00pm
Thursday, Aug 22 – 7:30pm
Saturday, Aug 24 – 4:30pm
Sunday, Aug 25 -1:30pm
All tickets are $10 and are available at the door. Advance tickets are available by going to and pre-ordering them (a service charge is added on). All audience members must make a one-time $5 purchase of a “backer-button” which is good for the duration of the festival.

“Flowers and Other F-words” at Fringe 2012


Alright, confession: I am not a Fringer – not a goer or a doer. I am certain that there is a lot of worthwhile activity which takes place there, but in my personal theatre persona there is not room for the oft-profane, leftward leaning, self-indulging festive of “anything goes”. I am not a truly “anything goes” type of guy – I am filtered, and I am comfortable being what I am, especially theatrically speaking.

So, it was a large deal for me to venture out last night, with Mrs. K at my side, to attend our first Fringe show, the offering of my longtime friends, Larry Haworth (whom I have worked onstage with and as a director of in 7 shows since 1999) and Amy Pettinella (whom I have known since 2003, when she joined an “Oral Interpretation” class I was teaching as an aspiring writer who hoped for a voice for her pieces).

Their Fringe play, Flowers and Other F-words, is a collection of vignettes, performed by Haworth, directed by Pettinella and written by both, concerned with the many sides of a man. The pieces range from an angry man’s stirring visit to his long-gone parents’ gravesite, to a regretful man’s visit to the Viet Nam Memorial to work out his feelings about courage and loss, to a proud grandfather’s visit to the grand-daughter he helped raise, on her 16th birthday. We also visit with a simple man, a man dreading a disclosure and a man of retirement age facing the prospect of a proposal. It is a good variety of circumstances to spend an hour with, and Haworth does a wonderful job with the tasks of the one-man show, a difficult genre to be sure. Difficult because you are up on stage alone, with no one else’s energy to feed on, no one to help untie your tongue or no one to help create the imagination that is theatre.

Haworth is a very good actor – I have seen this firsthand many times and have held him in high esteem for it for many years. This is material he is very comfortable with, as a lot of it, though not all, is biographical. The first piece, Good vs. God, especially seemed so – from what I have gleaned about his past from many conversations over the years. So, the emotions seemed genuine and collected from his reality – method, almost.

But I sensed a little difficulty on Haworth’s part with allowing enough emotion out of himself in that first piece and I felt this was the product of two things: One – the room he played in, the smallish Theatre On The Square Stage II, where too strong a portrayal could ring off the walls and possibly damage patrons’ eardrums, seems confining. There was a kind of restricted display in Good vs. God when the deep regrets of a tightly restricted childhood and parental outlook turned to anger. This room could have, I think, created the hold-back feeling in that part of the performance.

Second – the very choice of said emotion being loud and ringing  if given full force seems to enhance the issue. Pettinella and Haworth might have changed this choice to a more centered and core-held emotional display which would have carried the day and allowed for a truer subsequent collecting of self, which is what I think was the specific untrue moment.

This is one of the few things I saw that seemed a problem in conveying the emotions of a man, in this case driven to expunge his locked up feelings about his father’s choices and his mother’s angst. The other 5 vignettes played true, with emotion correctly placed. And there are a ton of emotions in the pieces.

The piece as a whole is, I think, a triumph for Haworth/Pettinella. It explores a full range of a man’s challenges in a very universal way. It brings to light the side of a man and his life that is often not dealt with in this format. And I must say that it seems a tremendous move forward thematically for Ms. Pettinella, who has a continuing spectrum of themes to explore now that she has made a departure from female-angst-centered themes. I look forward to her upcoming Almost Heaven at Indy Fringe Theatre in November.

Flowers and Other F-words continues at the FringeFest Saturday and Sunday, August 27 and 28 at 3pm and 10:30pm, respectively. I urge you to attend and not miss an opportunity to see solid writing, performed by a gifted actor.