Fiddlehead Theater Company, in collaboration with Aids Action Committee, is proud to present AIDA. 5% of every ticket sold will go to Aids Action Committee.
Love turns everything upside down and leads everyone down paths they could never have imagined. It is a modern Romeo and Juliet story, driven by a pop-rock score that transcends the vast cultural differences of warring nations to inspire peace.
Elton John and Tim Rice’s AIDA is a contemporary musical take on a grand classic tale of the timeless bond between an enslaved Nubian princess and an Egyptian soldier. As forbidden love blossoms between them, the lovers are forced to face death or part forever. Together, they set a shining example of true devotion that ultimately transcends the differences between their cultures and heralds a time of unprecedented peace and prosperity.
With a powerful score that features stirring ballads and rousing choral numbers, Elton John and Tim Rice’s AIDA is a modern crowd-pleaser that embraces multi-cultural casting and exuberant dancing, staging and singing.
Tim Rice and Elton John’s AIDA is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI).
All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI.
421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019 Phone: 212-541-4684 Fax: 212-397-4684 www.MTIShows.com
Ta’Nika Gibson (AIDA) A native of Springfield, MA, Ta’Nika Gibson is a highly versatile young artist. A student of classical voice and opera for the last four and a half years at NYU and at Eastman School of Music, Ta’Nika has recently decided to pursue a career in musical theater, her first love. In 2011, Ta’Nika performed at the Metropolitan Opera Guild in the world premier of the opera, 2Wice Upon a Birthday. In 2013, Ta’Nika was a regional finalist for the National Classical Singer Competition. This summer Ta’Nika is excited to perform in Better with a Band with the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse in Hampton, NJ. www.tanikagibson.com
Gene Dante (RADAMES) Gene Dante recently appeared as Dionysus in The Bacchae at American Repertory Theater’s Oberon Nightclub. Previously at A.R.T. Gene appeared in both The Lily’s Revenge and The Rocky Horror Show (Brad Majors, Elliot Norton Award nomination). He also was the title role in the recent critically acclaimed New England Tour of Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Previous roles include Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Andrew Jackson), The Fantasticks (El Gallo), and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (The Beast). Gene writes and performs original music with his band The Future Starlets. He is very stalkable. www.genedante.com
Christiana Rodi (AMNERIS) Residing in RI, Christiana has had the opportunity to travel the world performing with Cirque Dreams as their lead female vocalist, as well as in regional theaters around the country such as Goodspeed Musicals and Ocean State Theatre Company. She has played the role of Amneris once before and is so excited to now join Fiddlehead’s production of Aida! Christiana graduated from the Hartt School with a BFA in Musical Theatre-2011, and is a proud member of Actor’s Equity. www.christianarodi.com
Matthew Eamon Ryan (ZOSER) A proud New England native, Matthew is excited to make his Fiddlehead Theatre debut! Some favorite roles include The Bishop of Digne in Les Miserables, Nicely Nicely in Guys&Dolls, Father in Children Of Eden, Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar, and Enoch Snow in Carousel. Matthew has written two full length musicals including Benches-A Musical. Thanks to all the angels who keep me smiling! www.mattheweamonryan.com
Terrell Foster-James (MEREB) is a recent graduate of Berklee College of Music and is super-excited to be a part of Aida, his debut show with Fiddlehead Theatre Company! Some of his most memorable shows/roles include The Color Purple (Ensemble/Mister u/s), Rent (Tom Collins), Hair (Ensemble), and Footloose (Chuck Cranston) to name a few. Terrell will be applying this fall to obtain his Master’s Degree in Theatre Education, hopefully at NYU! He hope that you all enjoy the show, and feel free to say hi if you can; he’s very friendly!
Janett “Becky” Bass (NEHEBKA) from St. Croix in the US Virgin Islands, is delighted to perform for the first time with Fiddlehead Theatre Company. Tour: Yermedea (dir: Kym Moore). Favorite credits: Ophelia’s Cotillion (Gertrude), A Lady and A Woman (Miss Flora Devine), The Bluest Eye (Claudia). A 2013 graduate of Brown University in Theatre Arts & Performance Studies, Becky received Brown’s Weston Award for Excellence in Musical Theatre. She now performs with Lion Eye Music and Mystic Jammers as an award-winning, New England vocalist and steel pan artist. More at www.beckybass.com. She thanks her family and friends for their continued love and support.
Dallyn Vail Bayles (PHARAOH) Broadway Tours: Phantom of the Opera (Phantom/Raoul u/s), Les Misérables (Enjolras, 3rd National) (Feuilly, China premiere w/ Colm Wilkinson). NYC: Children of Eden (Adam, industry reading w/ Stephen Schwartz). Regional: Weaver of Raveloe (Godfrey Cass, A.R.T.’s Oberon Stage – world premiere), Ragtime (Father), South Pacific (Emile), Secret Garden (Archibald), Phantom (Chandon). Boston Conservatory: Assassins (Booth), Oklahoma (Jud). Concerts: Music from Stage and Screen (featured soloist, with Utah Symphony and Mormon Tabernacle Choir – upcoming), Golden Days (soloist, w/ Rebecca Luker and MTC), Music and the Spoken Word (guest soloist, national broadcast w/ MTC). Three solo albums. MFA in Musical Theatre candidate at Boston Conservatory. BFA in Music Dance Theatre from BYU. Actors’ Equity member. www.dallynvailbayles.com
David J. Curtis (AMONASRO) Stage credits include A Soldier’s Play, To Hell with this Village, Brokeology, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Ascension, Mama, I Want to Sing, A Streetcar Named Desire, 12 Angry Jurors, and The Crucible. David’s film and television credits include principal roles in Bad Brain Cells, Gloveless, R.I.P.D., 4 Cambridge Center, Stories for Dinner, The Maiden Heist, Under The Hood, Edge of Darkness, How to Make it in America, Clear History, and The Makeover. He has also been featured in many regional and national television commercials, voiceovers and industrial/educational videos. In addition to acting, David is also an accomplished percussionist/drummer, producer, engineer and composer. Mr. Curtis is also a proud member of the SAG/AFTRA union. For the future, David sees himself writing and directing a few screenplays because of his love of storytelling. www.davidjcurtis.com
Gabriela Carrillo (ENSEMBLE) is thrilled to be a part of the ensemble in AIDA. She has always been fascinated by African history and wished she could’ve lived in Ancient Egypt, so this is a dream come true! She’s a Chicago native and a sixth-semester at Berklee College of Music in Boston with a major in Professional Music. She focuses her studies on performance, songwriting and music business. Gabriela and has been involved in theater since the age of 8. She truly grew up in the theater, beginning in roles such as: Mary in “The Secret Garden,” Tina in “Ruthless,” Annie in “Annie” and later moving to adult roles like Maria in “West Side Story,” Nelly Forbush in “South Pacific,” and Sheila in “Hair.”
Jocelyn Duford (ENSEMBLE) is delighted to be making her debut with Fiddlehead! Recent credits include Hermia (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Kate Monster (Avenue Q), and Candy (Zombie Prom). She is also a featured vocalist in the ongoing concert series Something Wonderful I Missed with Not Your Mom’s Musical Theater. She has a B.A. in Theater from Dartmouth College with a concentration in Acting and Sound Design. During the day, she works as a Mad Scientist in New Hampshire, leading science enrichment programs, special events, and birthday parties for elementary age kids.
Christina Jimenez (ENSEMBLE) is excited to debut with Fiddlehead Theatre Company as well as be a part of the wonderful cast of Aida! She has earned her BM in Church Music at Furman University and her MFA in Theatre at The Boston Conservatory. Some of her favorite roles include Winifred in Once Upon a Mattress, Jeanine in the Boston premiere of Shelter: A New Musical, and her autobiographical cabaret From Sea to Shining Sea. She would like to thank her friends, family, and God for their support and guidance.
Ryoko Seta (ENSEMBLE) is a native of Yokohama, Japan and an accomplished singer, actor, and dancer. She is a graduate of Berklee College of Music with a bachelor’s degree in music business and management.
Danielle Wrenn (ENSEMBLE) is overjoyed to be joining this incredible production of Aida. Dani is originally from Alexandria, Louisiana and is currently living in Boston and pursuing a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from The Boston Conservatory. Many thanks to the entire cast, crew, and creative team for this amazing experience. Thanks always to my loving parents and entire family who have always supported me and without whom I would not be able to do what I love.
Dwaine Devonish-Daye (ENSEMBLE) Making his third appearance in a Fiddlehead production, he’s thrilled to be back for another season. Other credits include CJ Memphis in A Soldiers Play (Roxbury Repertory Theater), for which the ensemble won a local IRNE for best performance; Tom Collins in Rent (Lexington Players); Scarecrow (Lexington Players); and Booker T. Washington in Ragtime (Marblehead Little Theater).
Brian Cedric Jones (ENSEMBLE) is an international touring artist originally from Texas and happy to call New York home. He has studied, taught, and performed all over the world with American Voices including the Beijing School of Dance, Cairo and Beirut’s American Universities, and Chulalongkorn University of Bangkok, Thailand. Regionally, Brian has danced with Buglisi, H.T.Chen, Novomisle, & Clare Cook Dance companies and is a company member of the NY based international companies CircuitDebris, and Blue Muse Dance. He is excited to join the cast of Aida and perform for the first time in Boston.
Jay Kelley (ENSEMBLE) Music lover/Appreciator/Enthusiast is 6’2 (species unknown). Kelley has had the opportunity to play lead roles in groundbreaking musicals such as Hair (Hud), Hairspray (Seeweed J. Stubbs), and Godspell (Jesus).
“Doing Aida with such a great theater company will be an exhilarating and profound experience….I’m excited…Aren’t you?”
Andrew Norlen (ENSEMBLE) is thrilled to make his Fiddlehead debut with this beautiful cast! Originally from Portland, Oregon- he is here studying Musical Theatre in his junior year at The Boston Conservatory, working to gain his BFA. Many thanks to Meg, James, Kira, Balint & Elizabeth for this opportunity! Also to James, Michelle and his BOCO family! Professional website: www.andrewnorlen.com. All my love to Mom, Dad & K and everyone in Oregon for supporting this crazy journey. Thanks be always to God: Deuteronomy 31:6. For me this is a way of life; it’s what I do! “Your gift is not a gift until you give it away.”
Eric Rehm (ENSEMBLE) is happy to be a part of his first Fiddlehead production. Eric has a B.A. in both Theater and English from Umass Amherst and works as an arts and activities teacher at a middle school extended day program. Since moving to Boston Eric has been a part of ImprovBostons GoreFest and T: The Musical, in addition to acting with Flatearth and F.U.D.G.E. theater companies. Favorite past roles include Bobby Strong (Urinetown), the Emcee (Cabaret), Che (Evita), The Wolf/CInderella Prince (Into the Woods), Frederick (Pirates of Penzance) and Stine (City of Angels). When Eric is not acting he is singing with his Band “The One & Onlys” who you can see at various bars and venues around town.
Meg Fofonoff (Co-Director/Producing Artistic Director)
James Tallach (Co-Director)
Matthew Romero (Assistant Producer)
Balint Varga (Resident Music Director)
Kira Cowan (Choreographer)
Anthony J. Phelps (Resident Scenic Designer)
Winston G. Limauge (Lighting Designer)
Mark DeLuzio (Sound Designer)
Stacey Stephens (Costume Designer)
Elizabeth Soh (Stage Manager)
Taylor Vaughn (Assistant Stage Manager)
Sarah Karten (Wardrobe Supervisor)
Moira Shea (Sound Board Operator)
Megan Kinneen (Properties Master)
Desire Reggiannini (Hair and Makeup)
Julie Silva (Hair and Makeup)
In the Egyptian Wing of a major museum, we find a group of contemporary museum-goers admiring artifacts of a time long ago. The crowd is gathered around the most mysterious of the objects; an ancient burial chamber. Soon, two of visitors, a very beautiful man and woman, begin to move toward the burial chamber as if they know of its secrets or as if they have seen it somewhere before. The man is Radames; the woman Aida. Their eyes meet as the powerful voice of Amneris explains that (“Every Story is a Love Story”) leaving the stage empty, with the exception of the two lovers, allowing their tale to unfold.
Sails fly in as handsome Egyptian soldiers are discovered loading the riches and spoils of war onto the deck of their ship. They celebrate their courage, along with their captain, Radames, as they recognize that (“Fortune Favors the Brave”). Their celebration is interrupted by the entrance of the enchanting Princess Aida, and her handmaidens, as they are forced onto the ship. They have been captured as slaves. As Aida is put into shackles, she snatches a soldier’s sword to challenge Radames. Radames, not knowing that she is a princess, recognizes something special in Aida. He begins to give into his feelings for her and under the guise of seeing her as potentially dangerous, Radames escorts Aida to his personal berth in the ship’s lower quarters.
Radames removes the manacles from Aida and boastfully gives her instructions in her new role as his slave. Aida, once again demonstrating herself as a free-thinker, rejects Radames’ perspective of war, reminding him that the Egyptians invaded her Nubian homeland robbing her people of their culture. Aida reveals a longing for her life of freedom as she contemplates her past, and the past of her people (“The Past is Another Land”). Soon, much to her dismay, Aida finds herself in Egypt as the ship docks and the slaves are unloaded.
Radames is greeted and congratulated on his bountiful return to Egypt by Mereb, his young servant, and Zoser, his father (who also happens to be the Chief Minister). Zoser, upon seeing the slave women, including Aida, suggests that they be sent to the deadly copper mines. Radames, recalling his feelings for Aida, has another idea. The women’s deaths will be spared by using them in the harvest with a special assignment for Aida; she will be a gift for the Princess of Egypt, Amneris. As Mereb takes Aida to the Princess, Zoser is left to enlist Radames’ help in his dark and evil plan. In (“Another Pyramid”), Zoser explains that the Pharaoh’s serious illness will force Radames to marry Princess Amneris sooner than he had planned, making Radames the King of Egypt. Zoser leaves Radames, and conducts a meeting with the ministers of Egypt where he confesses his plan to poison the Pharaoh. In a dance sequence, at a climactic moment in the meeting, a traitor is suspected among the ministers. Zoser orders the traitor’s death and finalizes his plan for the rise of Radames.
The beautiful Aida appears in the costume of a Palace Slave, as Mereb prepares her to meet the Princess. He admits to Aida that he recognizes her as the Nubian Princess. In (“How I Know You”), Mereb and Aida form a bond as she asks him to keep her secret. They both concede that if the Egyptians were to discover her real identity, she would be put to death. Mereb also informs Aida that the Princess Amneris is the betrothed of Radames.
We meet self-consumed Princess Amneris as she finishes her daily swim and beauty treatment, while complaining that her future husband has yet to visit her. To soften her mood, Mereb presents Aida to Amneris as a gift from Radames. At first, Amneris dismisses Aida as just another handmaiden, but Aida’s quick thinking and regal manner, allows Amneris to reconsider. Aida cinches the deal when she offers to make new clothing for the Amneris, feeding her ego and placing her in close contact with the Princess. As Mereb leads Aida to the sewing room, Amneris confesses that clothing in her life is (“My Strongest Suit”).
The Pharaoh’s private banquet room is ablaze with activity. Radames, beginning to show his feelings for Aida, questions Mereb about the Nubian princess, just as Princess Amneris enters to greet him. To her horror, Aida, while serving the banquet, discovers that all of the Nubian slaves have heard of her arrival into Egypt. The Pharaoh, enters the banquet to announce that Ramades will never leave the soil of Egypt again, because in seven days, he will be wed to Princess Amneris. At the end of his announcement, the Pharaoh begins to cough up blood (Zoser’s poison is beginning to take effect), which causes the banquet to quickly disband. Zoser, giddy with the progress of his plan, questions Radames about his apparent unhappiness with the announcement of the Pharaoh. Radames explains that what he loves most is journeying to new places (“Fortune Favors the Brave – Reprise”) and that his marriage to Amneris will end his journeying forever. After his father leaves, Radames, in a tender moment of unspoken love, calls Aida from the shadows and they discuss the joy they both find in making new discoveries (“Enchantment Passing Through”).
As Aida tends to Amneris in her dressing room, the two women discuss the demands of being a princess (“My Strongest Suit – Reprise”). Amneris is surprised to find how much her new slave understands of her plight as princess. They are interrupted by Radames who suggests that Amneris meet him in her bedchambers. After Amneris leaves to prepare for a night with her fiance, Radames reveals that he wanted Amneris out of the way so that he could question Aida about her past, in private. Just before Radames can confess his love to Aida, a furious Amneris (who has been waiting on her bed) enters and orders him to have a map made of her body so that he will “be more inclined to explore.”
Mereb tries to convince Aida to claim her role as Princess and go to the Nubian slaves to give them hope. In (“The Dance of the Robe”) Aida accepts her place, even through her own self-doubt, as the leader of her people.
Radames discovers Aida at the Nile’s Edge washing linen. He offers to make her life easier by elevating her position at the palace. Staying true to her people, Aida refuses his offer, stating that she”can not continue to live in the comfort of the palace while my countrymen are dying.” Aida’s words have truly moved Radames; in fact, her love of her people has changed his values forever. Radames confesses his love for Aida to Mereb, while a confused Amneris sees this change in Radames as his deepening affection for her (“Not Me”).
Amneris, overwhelmed by the change in Radames, asks Aida to speak to Radames for her. Aida is to apologize for Amneris’ bad behavior in her bedchamber on the previous night. Aida tries to carry out the wishes of Amneris, denying her own feelings for Radames, but he interrupts Aida and confesses his love for her in (“Elaborate Lives”). War drums interrupt their embrace and a soldier enters to tell Radames that the Nubian King has been captured. His excitement about this development in the war against her country horrifies Aida, who cannot tell Radames that the King is her father. As the news of the King’s capture spreads through the Nubian slave camp, Aida leads her people from despair by reminding them that (“The Gods Love Nubia”).
In (“A Step Too Far”), sung in soliloquy, Amneris wonders why Radames will not show her the attention she deserves; Radames confesses that his love for Aida could end his life as he now knows it; and Aida contemplates her love for Radames verses her love for her people.
Mereb bribes a prison guard so that Aida can spend some time with her recently captured father, King Amonasro. As the three create a plan to allow King Amonasro to escape from jail, they realize that the docks are heavily guarded by Radames’ soldiers. Aida tells Mereb and King Amonasro that the soldiers will let them pass without a fight if she shows them the amulet that Radames gave her. When she reveals the amulet to Mereb and King Amonasro, she also reveals her true feelings for Radames. The outraged King commands Aida to “cut this man from your heart.” She explains that changing her feelings for Radames is as (“Easy as Life”).
Zoser, knowing how unhappy Amneris is with the way she has been treated by Radames, shows Amneris a giant map of the Nile, explaining the many conquests of the Egyptian army, and material gains, that have caused Radames to neglect her. Radames enters and asks Amneris to leave him alone with his father, which she regretfully does seeing this moment as yet another rejection. Zoser challenges Radames by telling him that he knows of his feelings for Aida, but that he must wait until after his wedding to have his little diversions. Radames admits that he cares nothing for the throne because he is not like the power-hungry Zoser. The argument between Zoser and Radames comes to a climax during (“Like Father, Like Son”). Radames rejects all ideas of the throne and of marrying Amneris causing Zoser and his ministers to plan Aida’s death to rid him of any distraction.
Aida receives (“Radames’ Letter”), in which he apologizes for his behavior and confesses his love. Mereb and the Nubians come to wish Aida well on her escape, planned for the following day, as guards storm the encampment searching for Aida. Before Aida can speak, Nehebka tells the guards that she is Aida and they drag her away in Aida’s place. Aida is horrified, and realizes that she must go to Radames and tell him who she really is. Mereb fails to convince her to stay and lead her people to freedom (“How I Know You – Reprise”).
Aida finds Radames as he walks the Nile. He tells her that he plans to call off the wedding, but Aida, realizing that his plan will jeopardize her father’s escape, begs him to reconsider. Aida explains that she and Radames can never have a life together because it has been (“Written in the Stars”). Radames finally accepts that he and Aida can never be together. He tells her that, during his wedding, he will arrange for her safe passage to Nubia. As the lovers depart, Amneris emerges from the shadows. She has seen everything. As she is dressed by her four handmaidens for her wedding, she admits that she is not the true love of Radames in (“I Know the Truth”).
The Royal Wedding is interrupted by the announcement that the Nubian King has escaped. Radames commands that “No one must reach the dock before I arrive there.” And chaos ensues.
A small boat floats at the water’s edge, tied to the dock by a heavy rope. Mereb, helps King Amonasro into the boat knowing that the Egyptians have sounded the alarm. Radames enters and accuses Aida of pretending to love him to arrange this escape with her father the King. Aida explains that she truly loves Radames, just as Zoser enters to stop the escape. A fight erupts in which Mereb is killed by Zoser and Radames, in a move to save Nubia, cuts the rope, allowing King Amonasro to be swept to away to his kingdom with the fast current of the Nile. Aida is left with Mereb’s dead body in her arms as Radames comforts her.
Radames and Aida appear in chains before Amneris. Amneris begs Radames to reject Aida to save himself, but he confesses that Aida’s “courage and her love for her people have put me to shame.” The Pharaoh enters, announces that Zoser has been apprehended, and sentences Radames and Aida to death. Amneris convinces the Pharaoh to allow her to sentence Radames and Aida to “be buried beneath the sands of Egypt, on one tomb…together.” Amneris runs off, unable to watch as Aida and Radames are led to their death. Aida and Radames contemplate their lives and how they are to leave this life (“Elaborate Lives – Reprise”). Once in the tomb, Aida and Radames promise to find each other if they have to “search for a hundred life times.” (“Enchantment Passing Through – Reprise”)
We return to our own time and the museum. Once again, the contemporary crowd gathers around various exhibits. The man and the woman circle the model of the tomb. They look up. Their eyes meet. The man and woman move towards each other as Amneris confirms that (“Every Story is a Love Story – Reprise”).