Musical with roots at Village Theatre and written by Issaquah native will tour to Seattle

March 7, 2010

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. March 7, 2010

The first national tour of “Next to Normal” — the Tony Award-winning musical penned by Issaquah native Brian Yorkey and originated at Village Theatre — will come to Seattle next February.

5th Avenue Theatre and Village Theatre will collaborate to bring “Next to Normal” to the Emerald City from Feb. 22 to March 13, 2011. Village Theatre and Seattle Theatre Group subscribers will be able to buy tickets to the show at a discount.

Tickets for the 2010-11 season at the 5th will be available Monday by phone at 206-625-1900, online or at the box office, 1308 Fifth Ave., Seattle.

The musical tells the story of the Goodmans, a suburban family dealing with the fallout caused by the bipolar disorder-afflicted matriarch. “Next to Normal” examines the fractured family as a therapist suggests radical treatment for the mother, Diana: electro-convulsive therapy.

“Next to Normal” originated more than a decade ago, as a 10-minute musical at a New York City theater workshop. The precursor — then titled “Feeling Electric” — opened at Village Theatre in 2002. The production garnered 11 Tony nominations after the musical debuted on Broadway last year.

The musical beat odds-on favorite “Billy Elliot” for Best Original Score. Yorkey — a former Village Theatre associate artistic director — and writing partner Tom Kitt beat songwriting titans Sir Elton John and Dolly Parton for the award. The production won another pair of Tony statuettes, for best orchestrations and best actress in a musical.

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