Preview: Next to Normal

by Liza Mattimore

Clearwater Theatre‘s acclaimed production of NEXT TO NORMAL returns to the Tarragon! This Pulitzer Prize winning rock musical by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey - stripped down by Clearwater Theatre to its most intimate and powerful level - will be playing June 5 – 16, 2013 (Previews June 5; Opens June 6) at the Tarragon Theatre Extraspace. 


Nominated for 11 Tony Awards (and winner of three), NEXT TO NORMAL is a groundbreaking contemporary musical about a family in crisis, struggling for normalcy. It’s an honest and brave account of a mother’s search for wellness and how her illness affects her family. This raw and stripped-down production explodes at the Tarragon Extra Space with a powerhouse cast, resulting in an intensely personal and intimate experience. Exhilarating, powerfully emotional and ultimately hopeful, the show is accompanied by a rock band comprised of Piano, Guitar, Bass, Cello, Violin and Percussion.

The remount of NEXT TO NORMAL welcomes back original cast members Kathryn Akin (Next to Normal, Theatre Calgary/Citadel; Calendar Girls, Mirvish/Royal Alex) as Diana, and rising star James Daly (Rising Tide Theatre; Spirit of Newfoundland) as her son Gabe. Bringing their own fresh perspectives to the production are Marty Burt (Bingo, Mulgrave Road; Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion; Titus Andronicus, Shakespeare by the Sea) as Diana’s husband Dan, Canadian Idol Top 5 finalist Steffi DiDomenicantonio (Next to Normal, MTC; Spring Awakening, first US national tour)  as overlooked daughter Natalie, David Coomber (Woody Harrelson’s Bullet for Adolf, Off-Broadway; RED, Canadian Stage/Vancouver Playhouse/Citadel Theatre) as her new beau Henry, and actor/musician Beau Dixon (Othello, Mysterious Entity; La Ronde, Red Light Theatre; Apprentice Music Director for The Shaw Festival & Caroline or Change) in the dual roles of psychiatrists Drs. Madden and Fine.

Tickets are available here, by phone at 416-531-1827, at the Tarragon Box Office or at the door. This is one of Justin's absolute favourites of all time so if you haven't seen it you definitely should.