Utah theater lovers have been anxiously anticipating the big-screen adaptation of Tony award-winning Jason Robert Brown’s “The Last 5 Years” to open in theaters on Friday, Feb. 13.
But they won’t see it on any Utah movie theater screen. The film version is in limited release and will only screen at one downtown Salt Lake City movie theater one month following the release to major U.S. cities.
The company’s staging is also in “limited release.” The original stage version, as the author originally wrote “The Last 5 Years,” will only be seen during the film’s release at the company’s exclusive-to-Utah production, like the film’s exclusive release to one theater.
“A Variety magazine reviewer wrote that Jason Robert Brown writes musicals that can be enjoyed by theatergoers who don’t necessarily like musicals,” says Johnny Hebda, Utah Rep’s artistic director. “The arrangements to ‘The Last 5 Years’ are called intuitive and the lyrics straightforward. I think the score is truly lovely, and the story packs an emotional wallop on stage. The show is being staged at intimate venues, so our audiences may feel as if they are in the main characters’ living rooms.”
The cast and creative team are also considered to form a “dream team.”
“Our director, John Sweeney, and music director, Anne Puzey, have lead many musicals at the area’s most popular theater companies, including Utah’s largest semi-professional theater, Hale Centre Theatre,” Hebda said. “They are exceptional talented, as are our two actors, Erin Royall Carlson and Rhett Richins. Each singer-actor is a delight to work with and performs the roles powerfully and beautifully.”
The company’s marketing campaign highlights the love story of the two-character play, with telling his own story: “There are two sides to every love story. You will fall in love with theirs.”
Advance tickets are available at UtahRep.org/tickets: adults $18 and seniors/students $16; at-door tickets are adults $20 and seniors/students $18
There are two sides to every love story. You will fall in love with Jamie Wellerstein and Cathy Hiatt as they recount their love stories.
Jamie is a young, talented up-and-coming Jewish novelist who falls in love with Cathy, a struggling actress — and shiksa goddess. “The Last 5 Years” tells the story of Jamie and Cathy, two New Yorkers who fall in and out of love over the course of five years.
An emotionally powerful and intimate musical by the Tony award-winning composer and lyricist Jason Robert Brown, “The Last 5 Years” is a story told nearly entirely through songs using an intercutting timeline device. All of Cathy’s songs begin at the end of their marriage and move backwards in time to the beginning of their love affair. Jamie’s songs start at the beginning of their affair and move forward to the end of their marriage. They meet in the center when Jamie proposes.