Arts and Entertainment

Bellevue’s Sarah Rose Davis lands staring role in Village Threatre's Funny Girl

Sarah Rose Davis of Bellevue has the lead in the music of Funny Girl.   - Courtesy Photo, Copyright Mark Kitaoka, property of Village Theatre.
Sarah Rose Davis of Bellevue has the lead in the music of Funny Girl.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo, Copyright Mark Kitaoka, property of Village Theatre.

Life imitates art as Bellevue’s own gutsy musical theater starlet, Sarah Rose Davis, lands the coveted role of plucky Fanny Brice in the Tony Award Winning musical Funny Girl, coming next to Village Theater.

Fanny Brice is Funny Girl; the irrepressible comedienne, Vaudeville star, and one of the most celebrated entertainers of her time. This semi-autobiographical musical is based on Fanny’s life, career, and stormy relationship with professional gambler and con artist Nick Arnstein.

The musical will run from May 15 to July 6 in Issaquah. Issaquah tickets ($30 to $65) are on sale now at www.villagetheatre.org/issaquah/tickets.php or at the box office (425-392-2202) from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

It includes favorite tunes “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” “People,” and “You Are Woman, I Am Man,” and is packed with all the glamour and glitz of the Ziegfeld Follies. Village Theatre’s production showcases over 180 costumes and countless scene changes spanning over four decades.

Scenic artist Julia Franz will celebrate her 100th production with Village Theatre, back where she started, so to speak. Her first production was also Funny Girl, also directed by Steve Tomkins and designed by Bill Forrester, back in the spring of 1994.

At a time when many theatre companies are converting to printed set drops, Franz remains dedicated to keeping the lost art of hand-painted sets, drops and floors alive.

"Hand-painting allows for more control and flexibility in our work," Franz said. "What we do is an art form and with the human hand we can achieve a visual aspect that a computer printout simply can’t.”

In addition to Davis (who also performed in Spamalot at the 5th Avenue), the cast will include Logan Benedict as Nick Arnstein; Bobbi Kotula as Ms. Brice; Don Collins as Florenz Ziegfeld; Chelsea Lynne Myers as Emma; Jayne Muirhead as Mrs. Strakosh; John Scott as Eddie Ryan; Jonathan Lee-Vroman as Tom Keeney; Laura Abel as Mrs. O’Malley and Rachel Wilkie as Mrs. Meeker.

Steve Tomkins will direct Funny Girl and together Tim Symons and Bruce Monroe will serve as co-music directors

Ensemble performers are Eric Bayne, Blaine Boyd, Sean Calavan, Ethan Carpenter, Gabriel Corey, Bo Mellinger, Mallory King, Trina Mills, Taylor Niemeyer, Becca Orts, Alana Peters, Connor Russell, Mara Solar, Adam Somers and Katy Tabb.

Tim Symons and Bruce Monroe will serve as co-music directors (original music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Bob Merrill.) Karen Ann Ledger is the costume designer, Aaron Copp is the lighting designer and Kristin Holland Bohr is the choreographer. Brent Warwick is the sound designer and Monique Walker is the properties master. Brandon Ivie is the assistant director and Brenda K. Walker stage manages.

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