How could it possibly be 20 years? The Off-Broadway debut of RENT was April of 1996, the day after the creator, Jonathan Larson died of an undiagnosed heart condition. The show went on to run 12 years on Broadway, winning multiple Tony Awards and a posthumous Pulitzer Prize for Larson.
“RENT The 20th Anniversary Tour” comes to Norfolk from January 4 – 6, 2019 at Chrysler Hall. There is no better way to bring in the New Year than with a show about compassion, creativity, and love.
Puccini’s classic opera, LaBohéme, was the inspiration for RENT. LaBohéme portrayed the lives of a group of starving artists in 19th century Paris. RENT is a year in the life of eight starving artists in late 20th century lower east side, Manhattan. Tuberculosis was the plague of Puccini’s opera. HIV/AIDS is the plague of Larson’s iconic rock musical.
The 20th Anniversary Tour edition of RENT is true to the original show. Logan Marks, who plays Mark Cohen, “the narrator, the camera man, the observer” says that this RENT is “100% the original, brought back to life.” Mark Cohen is a struggling documentary filmmaker who is never without his camera. He documents the group’s struggles to survive in New York, while trying to stay true to themselves and their art.
Logan Marks has been playing the role of Mark Cohen for nearly a year, right out of college. He graduated with a musical theater degree from Western Carolina University, moved to New York and landed the role in the touring company of RENT. He says it’s “a small piece of luck, but a lot of hard work, putting yourself out there and being in the right place at the right time.”
Unlike Mark Cohen, Logan Marks has not had to struggle for his art. Like Mark Cohen, Logan Marks is an observer, a “huge people watcher.” They both focus on their work. Marks calls himself “an old man in a young person’s body, not the most stylish and maybe even a little nerdy.” He wears Mark Cohen’s camera, sweater and “magical scarf” proudly.
“RENT The 20th Anniversary Tour” has the same message as the original RENT. It is just as relevant today as it was 20 years ago.
“In these dangerous times, where it seems the world is ripping apart at the seams, we can all learn how to survive from those who stare death squarely in the face every day and [we] should reach out to each other and bond as a community, rather than hide from the terrors of life at the end of the millennium.”
-Jonathan Larson, composer, lyricist and playwright of RENT
For more information and to purchase tickets for “RENT The 20th Anniversary Tour” go to https://www.sevenvenues.com/events/detail/rent-20th-anniversary-tour
Orchestra seats for “RENT The 20th Anniversary Tour are available for $24.00 on the day of the performance only at the Chrysler Hall Box Office, two hours prior to the show. The $24.00 “rush tickets” are limited to two tickets per person.
The tradition of these tickets began in 1996 in New York when the show moved to Broadway after a sold-out run in a small downtown theatre. The producers of the show are committed to continuing the tradition of offering these orchestra seats in each city the show will play.
RENT performs at Chrysler Hall January 4-6. Performance times are:
- Friday, Jan 4, 2019 8:00 PM
- Saturday, Jan 5, 2019 2:00 PM
- Saturday, Jan 5, 2019 8:00 PM
- Sunday, Jan 6, 2019 1:00 PM