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American Rose Theatre releases "IT GETS BETTER" video in conjunction with added performance for charity.
San Diego California - October 16, 2011
American Rose Theatre, an award winning educational theater company, has added a special performance to their fall production of SPRING AWAKENING to benefit two teen focused non-profit organizations: The Trevor Project and The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.  The added performance takes place on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at 7:00pm at the Lyceum Space Theatre. 
Tickets for the November 2nd performance are $20 for all seats and $10 of each ticket sold will be split between the two non-profit organizations.
The added performance has been in the planning stages since early September, and in conjunction with the announcement of the charity performance, ART has released a video produced by Ira Bauer-Spector called It Gets Better, in support of The Trevor Project's "It Gets Better" campaign. 
The video is available on youtube : 
RELEVANCE:  1891 to 2011 -- Spring Awakening is a show that deals with feeling alone in a changing world. The struggles the teens feel in Spring Awakening are very similar to those felt by the kids who need The Trevor Project.  In preparing to direct the show, Bauer-Spector found that "what is so rewarding about working on this piece is how incredibly relevant it still is to teens today.  Don't let the fact that it is set in Germany in 1891 fool you: Spring Awakening deals with issues that are both universal and timeless."  Because the cast and creative team of Spring Awakening were dealing with topics like bullying, teen suicide, teen pregnancy, and more, the production team wanted to find organizations that help teens dealing with those same issues today
The video was filmed and edited by Ira Bauer-Spector over the period of 3 rehearsals, and includes cast and crew members from the production. Making the video was emotional, and made the issues they are dealing with in the show more relevant.  It is surprising how many people of all backgrounds and life experiences have experienced bullying and isolation.  As one adult actor said "I've been bullied almost all my life."  Getting the word out that it DOES get better is timely and necessary.  Bauer-Spector says "If it helps just one teen realize that life gets better, it has served its purpose."
It Gets Better videos have been filmed by everyone from President Barack Obama, Daniel Radcliffe, corporations.  A group of Broadway stars recorded a song for IGB.  These videos have had a positive impact   Response to ART's IGB video released on October 13th has been positive and heartfelt. 
American Rose Theatre, an award-winning, San Diego based non-profit educational theater company, announced their fall production in September:  Spring Awakening, a new musical from the Tony and Grammy award-winning pair, Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater, with 11 performances October 28 - November 6, 2011 at The Lyceum Space in Horton Plaza, downtown San Diego. Ticket prices range from $15 to $30.  Ticket information at or call the Lyceum Box Office at 619-544-1000
The It Gets Better video is available on youtube and facebook.
THE TREVOR PROJECT  ( is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBT and question youth. The National Campaign ( to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy seeks to improve the lives and future prospects of children and families and, in particular, to help ensure that children are born into stable, two-parent families who are committed to and ready for the demanding task of raising the next generation.
Seeks to improve the well-being of children, youth, families, and the nation by preventing unplanned and teen pregnancy.
The show is directed and choreographed by Ira Bauer-Spector, with musical direction by Patrick Marion. Bauer-Spector is the only graduate of the San Diego State University MFA program to receive a graduate degree with a special emphasis on directing.  Both are experienced in working with performers of all ages and experience levels. 
Ira Bauer-Spector returns to ART after directing "13" last summer.  He most recently directed Zanna Don't for San Diego Junior Theater's Advanced Theatre Camp.  He previously directed Zanna, Don't for its San Diego premier in 2008, as well as Seussical for ACT San Diego, Moscow for Diversionary Theatre, Into the Woods at SDSU.  Bauer-Spector was also Intern Director for the premiere of The First Wives Club at the Old Globe.  A bonus for the cast and the audiences is that Bauer-Spector will be joining his cast on stage for Spring Awakening, stepping into the Adult Male roles for the high school cast.
Patrick Marion has worked throughout San Diego, including Lamb's Players, Cygnet, North Coast Repertory Theatre and J*Company He is an associate artist for Lamb's Players Theatre, and a staff member of San Diego Junior Theatre, where he has worked on Into The Woods, Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Richard Scarry's Busytown, andDear Edwina. He is wrapping up a 2 month run of Little Shop of Horrors at Cygnet Theatre, where he served as a musician, and recently stepped in as Music Director to finish out the extended run.
Spring Awakening is double cast and features a high school age cast and a college age cast of 33, comprised of experienced actors, with professional credits, and experienced young artists.  The cast is led by 2 award-winning talents in the lead role of Melchior - college Junior, Kevin Koppman-Gue heads the older cast and 15 year-old Ian Brininstool heads the high school cast, and starring Dylan Hoffinger, Shaun Tuazon, Trevor Sanderson, Kyrsten Hafso, Nadia Guevera, Elizabeth Morse, Kelly Prendergast, Hanz Enyeart, Jamie Channell, Krysti Litt, Julia Vanderwiel and John Whitley
Winner of 8 TONY Awards, including BEST MUSICAL, SPRING AWAKENING celebrates the unforgettable journey from youth to adulthood with a power, poignancy, and passion that is unforgettable. Adapted from Frank Wedekind's 1891 expressionist play about the trials, tears, and exhilaration of the teen years, and how they make their way through the thrilling, complicated, confusing and mysterious time of their sexual awakening.  It has been hailed as the "Best Musical of the Year" by the New York Times, New York Post, Star Ledger, Journal News, New York Observer, and USA Today.
Director Ira Bauer-Spector has wanted to direct this show since seeing it on Broadway. "The original play, The Awakening of Spring by Frank Wedekind, had a sub-title: 'A Children's Tragedy.' This story is a tragedy, but the musical adaptation provides for so many moments of inspiration and hope. Add the incredible rock score to the beautiful poetry of the script and the passionate performances of 35 of the most talented young artists in the city of San Diego, and you have an incredible theater experience."
Bauer-Spector also shares "What is so rewarding about working on this piece is how incredibly relevant it still is to teens today. Don't let the fact that it is set in Germany in 1891 fool you: Spring Awakening deals with issues that are both universal and timeless."
The ART team does not take the mature issues of the show lightly.  They are bringing in a family therapist to talk to the cast about the topical issues of teen sex, suicide and peer pressure. ART also plans to offer a talk-back with the audience following at least one performance. The reality is that young people in the cast, or those seeing the show may know someone dealing with any one of these issues. The story shows the tragedy of hiding things.  No one in the story is protected by ignorance.  Confronting the issues and providing a proper forum for discussion may help someone coping with any of these issues.
ART will be the second theater company in San Diego to present Spring Awakening, and one goal was to present the show with teen actors who are the same age as the characters.  The other was to ensure the audience could relate to and understand the characters and events.  One of the tricks in staging the show is that the cast will be among the audience throughout.  The message is that this story is set in 1891, but the events could just as easily happen in 2011.
GENERAL INFORMATION: Tickets for Spring Awakening are $30 for Producer Level, $25 for Premier, $20 for Standard, with $15 & $20 for students, seniors and active military and their families. ALL Tickets for the November 2nd performance only are $20 each.  Group discounts are available. Tickets are available by visiting the online box office at or contact the Lyceum box office at 619-544-1000. 
Due to strong language and mature themes, this show is not recommended for children under 13.
October 28
White Cast
October 29
White Cast
Red Cast
October 30
White Cast
Red Cast
November 2
Red Cast *
Special performance for charity
November 3
White Cast
November 4
Red Cast
November 5
Red Cast
White Cast
November 6
Red Cast
American Rose Theatre on Facebook:!/pages/American-Rose-Theatre/81049667945
The Trevor Project and It Gets Better


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