Slow Burn Theatre in Boca Raton has gained a reputation for tackling edgier new musicals. This weekend, the company presents the regional premiere of “Edges,” a song cycle from the young composers of “A Christmas Story,” “Dogfight” and television’s “Smash.”
Unlike musicals with a full blown plot, “Edges” is a song cycle, a collection of loosely related, theatrical songs with a theme, in this case, the trials and tribulations of moving into adulthood and the searches for love, commitment and meaning.
Composed by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul as a class project at the University of Michigan in 2005, “Edges” has been especially popular with younger performers and audiences, said Slow Burn’s co-artistic director Patrick Fitzwater.
“They call it a show because if it were a concert, we’d use music stands,” Fitzwater said. “We’re utilizing platforms and a basic set, piano, lighting; basically it’s a full blown production.”
For this show, Fitzwater assembled four talented young performers who are familiar to Slow Burn audiences – Abby Perkins, Nicole Piro, Bruno Vida and Alexander Zenoz.
He is especially proud Slow Burn has worked over the past five years to cultivate young local talent and said, “It’s the cool thing now (at local theaters) to use locals, but we sleep well at night knowing that we’ve been working with them all along.”
The production is also bittersweet for the Slow Burn team, Fitzwater and his co-artistic director Matthew Korinko, because the company will be moving from West Boca Raton Community High School to the Broward Center in Fort Lauderdale next fall. The company plans to continue the relationship after the move.
“It all started there at West Boca and we’ve grown with them,” Fitzwater said. “Students have worked on the crew for us and Lance Blank, our lighting designer, is a drama teacher there.”
Proceeds from the two performances will benefit Slow Burn and the theater department at West Boca Raton Community High School.
Slow Burn Theatre Co. presents “Edges,” a song cycle by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul on Thursday, Dec. 18 and Friday, Dec. 19 at 8 p.m. at West Boca Raton High School, 12811 W. Glades Road. Tickets are $20 at the door.