News

GTCC DEBUTS ‘3XL: THE MUSICAL’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 4, 2014

JAMESTOWN, N.C. - Guilford Technical Community College's Fine Arts Theatre will debut a new work, "3XL: The Musical," with book and lyrics by North Carolina native Lori Mannette and music by GTCC drama instructor Giuseppe Ritorto, April 3-5 and April 10-12. All shows are at 8 p.m. at the Joseph S. Koury Hospitality Careers Center on GTCC's Jamestown Campus, 601 High Point Road.  

NickandJen_3XL_web

"3XL: The Musical" follows the hilarious journey of newlywed chefs Nick and Jen, who are offered a dream opportunity to host a show on the Cooking Channel. However, the test audience feels the couple is too fat to be appealing, so the station gives Nick and Jen the ultimatum to lose weight fast or give up their chance for culinary stardom. Can their relationship survive for better or worse, in fitness and in fatness?  

"The media puts the idea in people's heads that we have to look and act a particular way to be accepted," Ritorto said. "What I want to say with '3XL' is that we need to accept who we are and forget about the social ideals that consume our everyday lives."

The play's initial concept came from Ritorto's upbringing in Brooklyn, where he was raised by parents who were chefs. The drama and animated personalities in the culinary world became the foundation for the play, but over time a larger message evolved.  

"The show is about just loving yourself," Ritorto said. "Be happy with who you are."

Ritorto and Mannette became fast friends while both pursuing an MFA in musical theater writing from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Although Ritorto moved back to Greensboro after graduation and Mannette remained in New York, the two stayed in contact and vowed to one day create a musical together. They've spent the past two years collaborating across the miles on "3XL." From New York City to Greensboro, they shared and polished their ideas through Skype and emails, and the occasional face-to-face marathon sessions when Mannette was in North Carolina visiting family. The process has truly been a labor of love.

"I won't sleep until April," Ritorto says with a laugh.

June Guralnick, director of GTCC's Theatre Program, is thrilled to be producing "3XL" and sees the play as a great learning experience for budding drama students.

"I selected this show because it's a marvelous work with wonderful roles for young actors," Guralnick said. "And I believe it's important to enable our students to be involved in the production of new shows by contemporary authors. The experience gained on a musical like '3XL' proves invaluable as our students continue in their theatrical careers."

Tickets for "3XL: The Musical" can be purchased at the High Point Theatre box office, located at 220 E Commerce Ave., High Point, by calling (336) 887-3001 or visiting www.highpointtheatre.com. Tickets are $15, general public; $10, GTCC staff and alumni; $5, GTCC students. There is an additional ticket surcharge for patrons purchasing tickets online. GTCC's Fine Arts Theatre has limited seating, so reservations are recommended.

There will be a pre-show dinner offered by GTCC's Culinary Arts Program at 7 p.m. April 3 and April 10 at the Joseph S. Koury Hospitality Careers Center (first floor dining room). Reservations are required and can be made at http://culinary.gtcc.edu.

For more information about "3XL," please contact June Guralnick at (336) 334-4822, ext. 50299 or jmguralnick@gtcc.edu.

EVENT DETAILS

What: GTCC's Fine Arts Theatre presents "3XL: The Musical," with book and lyrics by Lori Mannette and music by Giuseppe Ritorto

When: 8 p.m. April 3-5 and April 10-12

Where: Fine Arts Theatre, Joseph S. Koury Hospitality Careers Center, GTCC's Jamestown Campus, 601 High Point Road.  

Admission: Tickets are $15, general public; $10, GTCC staff and alumni; $5, GTCC students and available at the High Point Theatre box office, located at 220 E Commerce Ave., High Point, by calling (336) 887-3001 or visiting www.highpointtheatre.com. There is an additional ticket surcharge for patrons purchasing tickets online.

Etc.: A pre-show dinner will be offered by GTCC's Culinary Arts Program at 7 p.m. April 3 and April 10 at the Joseph S. Koury Hospitality Careers Center (first floor dining room). Reservations are required and can be made at http://culinary.gtcc.edu.

Information: Contact June Guralnick at (336) 334-4822, ext. 50299 or jmguralnick@gtcc.edu

About Giuseppe Ritorto
Brooklyn, N.Y. native, Giuseppe Ritorto discovered his love of theater at age 10 when he acted in "Hello Dolly," presented by the Greensboro-based Livestock Players. Since then, he has served as musical director at Catawba College in Salisbury, N.C. as well as The Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Va. He recently composed an opera, "On a Falling Leaf," as well as the musical, "Sweepstakes!" He currently teaches drama at GTCC.

About Lori Mannette
Lori Mannette's writing credits include "Carolina Breeze," a new musical with composer Joel Waggoner which has been featured at NYMF, Goodspeed Opera House, the New York Theatre Barn, was part of the Lincoln Center Songbook Series in May 2011, and was named Best Musical 2012 by the NY Writers Summit; "Dead Woman Crossing" also with composer Joel Waggoner, developed with the help of Ahrens & Flaherty through the Dramatists Guild Fellowship program, has been performed at Playwright's Horizons, and selections of which appear in the Feb/March 2013 issue of "The Dramatist" magazine; "Over the Hill," and a comedy web series entitled "Sonny and Sherman" produced by Big Thunder Productions and starring Michael Indeglio and Broadway's Drew Aber. Learn more at http://www.lorimannette.com.

About GTCC's Theatre Program
During the past two decades, the GTCC Theatre Program has presented plays ranging from tragedies such as "Oedipus the King" to modern comedies such as "The Odd Couple." The theater program is part of the Creative and Performing Arts Department and is housed in the Joseph S. Koury Hospitality Careers Center on GTCC's Jamestown Campus. Theater facilities include the Fine Arts Theatre (a two-story, modified black box space), costume shop, scene shop, dressing rooms, rehearsal hall, prop and scene storage spaces, and dressing rooms.

One of the key goals of the program is to engage and inspire students to become active participants in the theater arts. Graduates have gone on to careers in every aspect of the theater profession. Courses offered include acting, vocal training and production-oriented courses, including stagecraft, makeup and costuming. For more information about the program, visit www.gtcc.edu and use the keyword search "theatre."


Guilford Technical Community College is the third largest of 58 institutions in the NC Community College System. GTCC serves more than 40,000 students annually from four major campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at www.gtcc.edu.

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- Carla Kucinski/GTCC