Evening-length Performance Features Original Compositions and Live Accompaniment
from John Jorgenson and the John Jorgenson Quintet
Cast to Feature Principal Dancers Yumelia Garcia, Randy Herrera, Jennifer Goodman and Tom Mattingly
CHICAGO, IL â€” RPM Productions presents the world premiere of the full-scale production of â€œDay of the Gypsy,â€ a highly innovative dance-theater collaboration with choreography by Ruth Page Award winner Gordon Peirce Schmidt and featuring live accompaniment by Grammy Award-winning musician John Jorgenson and the John Jorgenson Quintet. Led by Schmidt and co-founders/artistic associates Jeff Bauer and Laura Berman, RPM Productions brings â€œDay of the Gypsyâ€ to Chicago for two performances, Saturday, November 21, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 22, 3 p.m. at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance. Tickets ($20 – $75) go on sale Thursday, July 30, available online at HarrisTheaterChicago.org, by calling (312) 334-7777 or in-person at the Harris Theater Box Office (205 E. Randolph Drive). Group discounts are available for groups of 8 or more by contacting GroupTix at (773) 327-3778 or GroupTix.net.
â€œâ€™Day of the Gypsyâ€™ is an immersive theatrical experience inspired by the mystical allure of Gypsy Jazz music and its iconic pioneer, Django Reinhardt,â€ said Schmidt. â€œDrama, live music, movement, innovative sets, costumes and lighting designsâ€”we combine all these elements to create an original story told through contemporary dance. We look forward to presenting it for the first time in its entirety.â€
Featuring a cast of 12 dancers and five musicians, â€œDay of the Gypsyâ€ follows a series of magical misadventures, propelled by the sounds of Gypsy Jazz. Powerful, athletic choreography drives the enchanting story and irresistible charm of a magic spell that entangles the hearts of a Gypsy girl and an average Joe. Schmidtâ€™s original choreography features principal dancers Yumelia Garcia (Joffrey Ballet), Randy Herrera (former principal dancer with Houston Ballet), Jennifer Goodman (formerly with the Joffrey Ballet) and Tom Mattingly (formerly with Ballet West).
Director/choreographer for â€œDay of the Gypsyâ€ is Gordon Peirce Schmidt along with associate choreographer Laura Berman. Original music is composed by John Jorgenson. The design team for â€œDay of the Gypsyâ€ includes Joseph Jefferson Award winner Jeff Bauer (set design, costume design). Production stage manager is Dyan Yoder.
Schmidt has been choreographing and directing dance and theatre for the past 30 years. He is the recipient of numerous honors, including a Prime Time Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Achievement-Cultural Programming and two Ruth Page Awards for Choreography. During his tenure as resident choreographer for Ballet Chicago between 1989-1995, Schmidt began experimenting with the Gypsy Jazz genre, presenting â€œBy Django,â€ a lively evocation of the jazz age, which went on to become the signature work for the company. An abbreviated work-in-progress with isolated sections of â€œDay of the Gypsy,â€ titled â€œJournee des Tziganes,â€ was performed at the Athenaeum Theatre in 2014; the Harris Theater engagement marks the debut of the full-length production.
Music virtuoso John Jorgenson, known for his blistering guitar licks and mastery of a broad musical palette, has earned a reputation as a world-class musician and guitarist who has collaborated with the likes of Elton John, Luciano Pavarotti, Bonnie Raitt and Bob Dylan. In addition to acoustic and electric guitars, he is also regularly featured on the saxophone, clarinet, bouzouki, pedal steel, mandolin, vocals and has garnered recognition for contributing to numerous platinum-selling and Grammy-winning albums.
Currently touring as the John Jorgenson Quintet, Jorgenson creates a unique musical experience that equally enthralls the most discerning and the casual music fan. In the â€˜90s, The Hellecasters gave audiences a chance to experience Jorgensonâ€™s fretboard fireworks in an unrestrained venue and the trioâ€™s three original albums remain favorites of guitarists everywhere. Having been a fan of the Desert Rose Band, Elton John invited Jorgenson to join his band in 1994 for an 18 month tour that stretched into a six-year stint of touring, recording and TV appearances with the British superstar, in addition to collaborations with other artists including Sting and Billy Joel.
Performance Schedule and Ticket Information
Saturday, November 21, 2015 | 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 22, 2015 | 3 p.m.
Tickets ($20 – $75) go on sale Thursday, July 30, available online at HarrisTheaterChicago.org, by calling (312) 334-7777 or in-person at Harris Theater Box Office (205 E. Randolph Drive). Group discounts are available for groups of 8 or more by contacting GroupTix at (773) 327-3778 or GroupTix.net.
About RPM Productions
RPM PRODUCTIONS is a non-profit arts organization dedicated to creating works and programs which inter-weave the varied disciplines of the performing arts and visual media. With a history of successful artistic cross-over collaborations backed by the talents of artistic associates Gordon Peirce Schmidt, Laura Berman, and Jeff Bauer, RPM PRODUCTIONSâ€™ goal is to develop and promote the combined abilities of existing and emerging artists. By producing work which is â€œproject specificâ€ RPM PRODUCTIONS is able to assemble artistic teams of designers, videographers, writers and composers to create accessible new works which challenge and entertain a wider range of audience. For more information about RPM Productions visit rpm-productions.org.