Monthly Archives: December 2011

This Sunday ONLY: Make the Yuletide Gay! A Holiday Cabaret

This Sunday at 7:00pm come on down to the Spectrum Theatre and get into the holiday spirit!  Ellie Frances and Rob Karel present this special holiday event with all proceeds going towards these scholarship funds:

– Actors’ Theatre (Fred & Mickey Sebulske Fund)
– GRCC Foundation
– Grand Rapids Combined Theatre Scholarships

Infused with modern medleys and show-stopping vocals, this old-fashioned cabaret is sure to make your season bright!

Tickets are just $15 General Admission
($10 Students & Seniors – at the box office)

Purchase your tickets now!

Performance Information:
Make the Yultide Gay!: A Holiday Cabaret

Sunday, Dec. 18th at 7:00PM

GRCC Spectrum Theater
160 Fountain Street
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

A meet and greet reception in the Spectrum Theater at GRCC lobby will follow the performance.

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Actors’ presents the provocative musical “Spring Awakening”

On The Town Magazine published an article about Spring Awakenings.  Here’s an excerpt:

Actors’ presents the provocative musical “Spring Awakening”

By Katerie Prior | On-the-Town

More than friends: Addison Reid Coe as Melchior and Maggie Nye as Wendla. Photo Credit: Joanne N. Bailey-Boorsma

“You’re at one of the best times of your life.” It’s a statement that adults often say to teens unwittingly. At any age over thirty, you’re bound to look back at your teenage years and remember feeling young and carefree, all while forgetting the bewilderment and sometimes anguish the move from childhood to adulthood sometimes caused. This is the theme of Spring Awakening, a musical performing this month at Actors’ Theatre.

The play centers on Moritz and Melchior, two teens dealing with school, struggling with their parents’ expectations, and experiencing their own physical yearnings for the opposite sex for the first time. After Melchior has a fateful night with his crush, a naïve girl named Wendla, and Moritz fails his final exam, the friends make decisions that will affect the rest of their lives.

Originally written in 1890, Spring Awakening criticized what playwright Frank Wedekind saw as an overly conservative streak in nineteenth century German culture. Since then, this provocative play has been produced multiple times, with productions often being banned or closed early due to outcry over the content.

All of that changed in 2006 when singer/songwriter Duncan Sheik and lyricist Steven Sater adapted the work as an off-Broadway musical. It was a runaway hit, and that same year Spring Awakening moved to Broadway where it was lauded by critics and earned numerous awards.


Check out the rest of the article, here on Spring Awakening runs through December 17th. Go to for more information and to purchase tickets.

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Deadline: Charitable IRA Rollover Expires on December 31, 2011

Last year, the Tax Relief Act extended the IRA Rollover provision for charitable contributions through the end of 2011.  The deadline for donors to take advantage of this extension is fast approaching.  Actors’ exists because of private contributions of individuals like you.  Ticket sales, even with last year’s 62% increase in attendance, account for less than half of what it takes to bring you fresh, fun, contemporary theatre the Actors’ way.   An IRA Rollover in 2011 is ideal for those who wish to support the organization and:

  • hold assets in their IRAs that they do not need
  • would like to make a large one-time gift
  • are subject to the 2% rule that reduces itemized deductions
  • do not itemize their deductions

If you feel you qualify and would like to use your IRA to make a tax-deductible contribution to either the general operating expenses of the theatre, or to the long-term future of the organization with a contribution to our endowment, please contact Jonathan Clausen at (616) 234-3817 or email The provisions of this IRA Rollover are as follows:

  • Individuals age 70 ½ and older may request direct transfers of funds from Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) to qualified public charities without income tax on gifted funds.
  • The funds must be directly transferred from IRA accounts to the charities (donors should ask their IRA custodians for special forms to make these requests).
  • Each individual is entitled to make a total of $100,000 in gifts to charities each year under this provision.
  • These contributions do not qualify donors for an additional charitable income tax deduction as not being taxed on the withdrawal is worth even more than a standard charitable deduction.
  • Only standard IRAs and Roth IRA accounts qualify under this law; other retirement accounts such as 401(k), 403(b), SEP, KEOGH, and SIMPLE IRA plans cannot be used to make an IRA rollover gift.
  • Donors of IRA rollover gifts must receive no personal benefits from this gift nor are they available for planned gifts such as charitable remainder trusts or gift annuities.

Don’t qualify for this rollover provision? Consider making an investment in the future of Actors’ today with your tax-deductible gift:

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“Spring Awakening” in The Collegiate

Check out this article in GRCC’s The Collegiate about Spring Awakening:

Actors’ Theatre presents ‘Spring Awakening’ at Spectrum Theater
By Matthew Waldrep
A&E Editor

Actors’ Theatre of Grand Rapids is presenting the Tony Award-winning musical “Spring Awakening” at Spectrum Theater.

Set in Germany during the late 19th century, “Spring Awakening” tells the tale of several teenagers exploring their misunderstood sexual desires amidst the challenges of transitioning into adulthood.  As an adaptation of the 1891 play of the same name by playwright Frank Wedekind, playwright Steven Sater and Composer Duncan Sheik create a postmodern retelling of the controversial play.  The title itself alludes to the angst-ridden teens’ ‘awakening’ and discovering their sexual nature.

For starters, this show is by no means your traditional Rodgers and Hammerstein-esc song and dance production.  Directed by the award winning founder of Actors’ Theatre, Fred Sebulske, the songs of “Spring Awakening” carry inescapable rock and roll energy.  The anthematic cry of sexual frustration, “The Bitch of Living,” performed by the entire cast, begs for head-bob from the audience, if not a head-bang.  The alt-rock score for a story about late 19th century students in Germany sets quite the juxtaposition while also feeling strangely relevant.  You soon forget that it’s wrong for the period and realize that it’s right for the themes.


Check out the rest of the article on The Collegiate.

To get more information on show times and tickets for Spring Awakening, go to

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Filed under In The News, Plays and Productions

Only Two More Weekends to see Spring Awakening: The Musical

Photo credit: Moments in Life Photography

With rave reviews and many audience members coming back for a 2nd (and even 3rd!) look at Spring Awakening, seats for the remaining two weekends are selling fast!

Though it’s a busy time of year for many, audiences – young and old – are making time to attend this “must-see” production.  Here’s what a few who’ve already seen the show have had to say:

“this was a great performance and I tell everyone I know they need to go and see it!!!”
via Facebook

“Great show! Again amazed at the talent we have in this town!”
-via Facebook

I’m speechless… I’m not! What a great show, amazing cast, direction, choreography. Grand Rapids – Go See This Show!
-via Facebook

This week we are offering a mid-week special on remaining seats for the next two Thursday performances.  Use coupon code “HOTSTUFF” (no quotes) online when you purchase your seats and receive 25% off seats for the remaining Thursday night performances – a savings of over $6 per ticket on center orchestra seats! Don’t delay as this offer expires at 5PM on December 8th…

Photo Credit: Moments in Life Photography

Here’s what last week’s Grand Rapids Press had to say about the production:

“‘Spring Awakening,’ which opened Thursday at Actors’ Theatre, is as hot and seductive as the hormone-happy passions it depicts.”
The Grand Rapids Press

The Spectrum Theater box office is open Monday through Friday from 1PM to 5PM and through 8PM on nights of performance.  The theater and box office are located at 160 Fountain Street NE, Grand Rapids.  All performances begin at 8PM.  If tickets for a performance remain, student RUSH seating is available for $10 beginning 45 minutes prior to curtain. A valid student ID (or proof of age if under 18) is required.

To purchase tickets for remaining performances through the box office call (616) 234-3946 today!  Tickets may also be purchased online at


Actors’ Theatre is committed to providing West Michigan with the best in entertaining, innovative, challenging, and thought-provoking theatre.

We believe in the inclusion of all.

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