The Barn Theatre in Augusta, Mich. describes this week's stage event as: "An audience opportunity to be a part of history as a brand new work hits the Barn Theatre stage."
Playing for one week only, now through Labor Day Monday, Sept. 2, is the Barn's exciting 66th Season finale "Raunch and Roll," and I can't wait to check it out on Sunday.
Dreamed up as "an exciting new format," part drama, part rock concert, it features book by the Barn's own legendary founding family heir Brendan Ragotzy, with music by Troy Benton, Grammy Award-winner Richard Marx, Fee Waybill of The Tubes and Gary Cherone of Van Halen and Extreme.
Since bursting onto the rock scene in 1985, Roxy, played by Penelope Alex, has ruled the charts, with album and concert ticket sales soaring to unbelievable heights.
Her fans adore her, though she has a definite bad girl streak, known to spout obscenities, smoke, drink, and she has a weakness for men.
At the top of her career, Roxy vanishes from the public eye.
After a couple of years, with her fans longing for her to return to the stage, Roxy receives a diagnosis that forces her to face the music, and she realizes it’s time to right some wrongs, if it's not too late.
With the help of her manager and trusted friend Carl Weinstein, played by Eric Parker, Roxy returns to her hometown to face those she left behind, including her mother, played by Kalamazoo local actress Sharon Williams, and her 10-year-old son, adopted by ex-band mate, Tommy, played by Roy Brown and his wife Christine, played by Emily Fleming.
Despite their hard feelings, band members Tommy, Sticks (played by guest Artist Scott Marcus, La Croix, played by Charlie King), Van portrayed by Troy Benton, P.B.R., played by Jamey Grishamm, reunite in the second act of "Raunch and Roll," for one last concert before Roxy "retires."
A small town dilapidated concert hall packs fans to the rafters for this once in a lifetime event to hear Roxy and the band rock tunes such as Time of Our Lives, Difference, Stand or Fall, In the Wings and the title song Raunch and Roll.
This stage story is intended for mature audiences.
The complete creative team features Director Brendan Ragotzy, Musical Director Troy Benton, Choreographer Jamey Grisham, Costume Designer Michael Wilson Morgan, Scenic Designer Steven Lee Burright, Hair/Wig Designer Garrylee McCormick, Lights Corey Boughton, Sound Designer Sam Silva, Technical Director Fred Gillette and Assistant Technical Director Zach Kentala.
New showtimes for performances are 8 p.m. EST Thursday and Friday, 5 p.m. EST Saturday and Sunday, along with an 8:30 p.m. EST Saturday.
Audiences can also enjoy refreshments, snacks, wings, nachos and in "The Shed" concessions area to cool off while enjoying the show with some delicious ice cream, served right in the Rehearsal Shed area.
And don't forget that after each performance, the fantastic Cabaret Bar Cottage area is also open for what is some of the most fun over cocktails I've ever experienced in an intimate backwoods Michigan setting.
The Barn Theatre is located on M-96, west of Augusta. Tickets are $34 for all performances of "Raunch and Roll," and Visa, MasterCard and Discover are accepted. The Box Office is open daily 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST.
For tickets or more information call (269) 731-4121. barntheatre.com.