In its first four seasons, Slow Burn Theatre has built a reputation as a plucky company that’s willing to make some risky bets, treating audiences to avant garde, lesser known musicals like Urinetown, Bat Boy, Side Show and Blood Brothers.
But, what’s frustrated theater lovers most is the company’s conservative approach, opting for shorter, two weekend runs at the performing arts center at West Boca High. This decision by founders Matthew Korinko and Patrick Fitzwater left their critically acclaimed productions ineligible for the region’s professional theater awards, the Carbonells, and forced audiences to scramble for seats on busy weekends.
“We’ve always wanted to have longer runs, but it wasn’t always financially possible,” explained Korinko. “At the same time, we’ve also always been anxious to get on to the next show.”
“These are shows that people should see. If you’re not in New York at the right time, you might not get to see them,” he lamented.
For their fifth season, the company will be bringing two productions to the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center, giving north Miami-Dade audiences an opportunity to see what all the buzz has been about.
“It’s a great way to extend our run and reach different audiences by partnering with Aventura (Arts and Cultural Center). It saves that added expense and we can accomplish the longer run everyone has been requesting,” he said.
The Aventura center has offered popular cabaret series and dance performances, but few musical theater productions, making the arrangement a win-win for all. Most importantly, the partnership will provide the growth necessary for the company to begin pursuing corporate sponsorships and foundation grants.
"We’re ready for some growing pains,” he concluded.
Slow Burn Theatre opens its fifth season with Next to Normal, the Tony Award-winning musical, at West Boca High School (Oct. 18-20, 25-27) and Aventura Arts and Cultural Center (Nov. 1-3). For tickets and more information, go to SlowBurnTheatre.org.