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MTC, Rust Belt announce online production dates

Actual theaters remain empty locally, but it’s getting crowded on the virtual stages.

Both Millennial Theatre Company and Rust Belt Theater Company announced premiere dates this week for online productions in October.

Millennial’s production of “Songs for a New World” will be available for streaming starting Oct. 24. The song cycle is an early work by composer Jason Robert Brown, a Tony winner for his scores for “Parade” and “The Bridges of Madison County” and creator of the Off-Broadway musical “The Last Five Years.”

It tells a series of stories about characters facing choices, from a young man who hopes basketball will be his escape from the ghetto to a woman weighing the pros and cons of having a rich husband and a soulless marriage.

Directed by Joe Asente with musical direction by Savannah Florkowski, “Songs for a New World” traditionally is performed by a small cast with each actor playing multiple roles. MTC’s production will feature more than 50 voices, both local talent as well as actors from around the state and North America.

Tickets are $20 for a single viewer and $30 for family viewing. Tickets will be available online at www.showtix4you.com starting at 12:01 a.m. Oct. 24 and will provide 48-hour access to the production. Presale tickets are available now using the code: MTC

“Living Dead: The Musical” has been an October staple at Youngstown’s Rust Belt Theater Company. This year’s production will be presented online and available for only three days, from Oct. 30 until Nov. 1.

The musical written by Robert Dennick Joki and Josh Taylor spoofs the black-and-white horror classic “Night of the Living Dead” and other zombie tales and horror movie tropes. It includes such songs as “Midnight Moonlight Movie Show,” “Ode To A Rotting Corpse,” “They’re Coming To Get You Barbara,” “I Got Your Black,” “He Only Hits Me Cuz He Loves Me,” “Gabriel’s Horn,” “Disaster Nudity” and “I Bet Things Are Beautiful In Youngstown Ohio.”

Josh Fleming is directing this year’s production, which features a mix of returning performers and newcomers.

Tickets can be purchased with a donation of $5 or more to @Robert-Joki on Venmo. Ticket buyers need to include their email address with the donation, and they will receive a confirmation email with a link to view the production, which will go live at 8 p.m. Oct. 30.

Look for full previews of both productions in Ticket closer to their premiere dates.

Also, this is the second and last weekend to catch Youngstown State University’s production of “The Glass Menagerie” with show times at 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. If you missed it in Sunday’s newspaper, my review can be found online (short answer: it’s worth your time).

Tickets are $10 for a single viewer and $25 for group viewing / watch party and are available online at www.showtix4you.com/events/YoungstownStateUniversity

SmashUp Entertainment’s production of “King Lear” also is in the pipeline, but the theater hasn’t announced a new date since its Sept. 2 debut was delayed.

Andy Gray is the entertainment editor of Ticket. Write to him at agray@tribotday.com.

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