Roxie & Velma Rock Marin!

CHICAGO-PR_1-Photo_1Marin Summer Theater’s production of CHICAGO has everything that makes a musical great; murder, greed, corruption, violence, exploitation adultery, treachery, and all that jazz; one show-stopping-song after another; and an incredibly talented cast of actors, singers and dancers.  And with Kasie Gasparini and Paige Brinskele on stage as Roxie Hart and Velma Kelly, this production of CHICAGO is going to rock! 

Brinskele and Gasparini first met in 2003 during a production of “Annie”, but it was during a run of West Side Story in 2006 that they became good friends.  “There were three Maria’s for that show.” said Gasparini. “Kasie, Jessica Apperson and I were all Maria’s that summer”  said Brinskele, “It was crazy, but fun.” 

After that Brinskele (who attended MSA at Novato High School) and Gasparini (who attended San Marin High School) kept in touch, but they did not appear in any more shows together.  Both continued to pursue musical theater after high school.  Brinskele enrolled at Vanguard University and Gasparini studied at Chico State.  When Marin Summer Theater announced that it would be presenting Chicago this summer, they jumped at the chance to audition, and both landed leading roles.

“Chicago is one of the few musicals with multiple female leads” said director Patrick Nims.  “Chicago is all about the rivalry between Roxie and Velma.  We were thrilled when both Kasie and Paige auditioned because we knew that their chemistry on stage would be fantastic.”

CHICAGO_-_PR-Photo_2Brinskele and Gasparini feel that having known each other for such a long time helps them in their roles.  “We can have fun being mean to each other on stage because we are friends” said Brinskele.  “And we know that we can depend on each other” added Gasparini.

Marin Summer Theater continues to feature siblings with six different pairs of brothers and sisters in the 2010 company.  “It is not a conscious decision” said Nims.  “Casting is based on talent but it is a fact that there are some very talented families in Marin.”  Included are Brinskele’s brother Jake and Gasparini’s sister Chloe.  “My last show with Chloe was Annie” said Gasparini.  “It is so cool to have her in rehearsal with me”.  Brinskele added, “I haven’t been in show with Jake for three years.  I did not realize just how much he has grown in that time”. 

For Nims, having Brinskele and Gasparini in the cast is what Marin Summer Theater is all about.  “Our first objective is to put on great shows, but giving recent graduates the chance to come back and show us what they’ve learned is a big part of the program.  I could not ask for better role models for the younger kids than Paige and Kasie”. 

CHICAGO_-_PR-Photo_4CHICAGO opens Marin Summer Theater’s regular season on July 9 at 8pm.  A pay-what-you-will preview performance will be given on Thursday July 8 at 8pm.  Other performances are on July 10 at 8pm and July 11 at 2pm.  All performances are at the Emily Gates Student Center at San Marin High School in Novato.  Tickets are $10 for Students and Seniors and $15 for adults and may be purchased in advance at or at the door.

MST is a theater company of 71 actors, singers, dancers, musicians, directors, designers, technicians, and crew students between the ages of 13 and 23.  Students from 32 different schools and universities are represented, including College of Marin, Boston University, SF State, Santa Rosa JC, Sonoma State, UCSB, USC, UArts Philadelphia, California Lutheran, UC Berkeley, DePaul, Willamette, ASU and University of Evanston.  Local schools include San Marin, Novato, MSA, Terra Linda, Redwood, and Santa Rosa High Schools and Hill and Sinaloa Middle Schools.

MST is sponsored by San Marin Music Boosters and receives valuable support from San Marin HS and Novato Unified School District.  Three of MST’s directors are San Marin teachers.  “MST would not exist without the help we receive from San Marin, its staff and volunteer support” said Nims.

CHICAGO_-_PR-Photo_3After CHICAGO, MST will present “Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead” (a comedy) on July 23, 24, 25 and “Some Enchanted Evening – The Songs and Dance of Rodgers and Hammerstein” (a song and dance review) on July 29, 30, and August 1.  The MST program is sponsored by San Marin Music Boosters with valuable support from San Marin High School, the Novato Unified School District and individual donors and volunteers.

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About Marin Summer Theater

Marin Summer Theater (MST) is an award winning non-profit theater company for students of performing arts between the ages of 13 and 23. The MST company prepares and presents three fully-staged productions in a six-week summer season. MST's mission is threefold: To present exciting, professional quality drama, musical theater and musical revue productions; to keep tuition as low as possible so that cost is not a barrier to participation; to create a diverse company of college and high school students.

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