Adding an inclusive spin on a famous Broadway play is The Empty Space’s production of “The Last Five Years.”
The musical follows a failed relationship as it’s retold from two different perspectives. The show follows two characters as they both explain the relationship – one describes it from beginning to end, while the other describes it from end to beginning.
“They kind of cross over in the middle,” said Kristina Saldana, the director of the production and financial director of the theater. “You kind of see what goes on in their lives. There are 16 songs and there are two characters so each character gets eight songs each. Only a couple times, do they sing together. It’s mostly solos.”
The spin comes in the way the cast is used. Instead of the traditional two cast members, this production makes use of a rotating cast and adding a same-sex couple to give it a different perspective.
“I have two women playing the role of Cathy and I have one man and one woman play the role of Jamie, which is normally played by a man but I added a woman into the mix just to kind of mix it up a little,” said Saldana.
Saldana said the mix-up will make for some interesting and unique shows. The cast of four will switch partners from show to show.
Baeleigh Bevan is playing Jamie in her first lead role. Bevan’s role is a unique one as she gets to portray Jamie, normally a male character, from a female perspective.
“I think it’s really cool that no two shows are going to be the same,” she said. “I think it’s really exciting that we’re doing something so inclusive. I don’t think anybody has ever seen a show like this. The show’s really raw in a sense … it makes you think about your own relationship and how you deal with people.”
It’s that self-reflection that Saldana and the rest of the cast hopes the audience gets from watching this production – aside from the catchy tones.
The production will run Fridays and Saturdays, from Feb. 1 through 23.
Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are available online starting at $10 for student and seniors and $15 for general admission, along with “rush seats” every night for those that would like to pay what they can. Those tickets are limited. VIP tickets are available at $60 for two people and include front-row seats and a special treat in the spirit of the show. To purchase tickets and for more information, visit www.esonline.org. ￼