FOR IMMIDEATE RELEASE: Dec. 9, 2021
MEDIA CONTACT: Sydney Ritter | SydneyR@ScottsdaleArts.org | 480-874-4663
SCOTTSDALE, Arizona — Detour Company Theatre is bringing the chocolate factory to Scottsdale with their production of “Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka” from January 7–9 at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. Second St., Scottsdale, Arizona.
Detour Company Theatre provides theater training and performance experiences for adults with developmental, intellectual and physical disabilities, providing them authentic opportunities to develop artistry, demonstrate courage and collaboration, experience joy and participate in the sharing of musical theater with the entire community.
“We are stars. We are the stars of a theater troupe that treats us like equals. We believe in each other both on and off stage,” said “Willy Wonka” actor Paul Costantini.
In this Roald Dahl classic, the delicious adventures of Charlie Bucket are set to songs from the 1971 film starring Gene Wilder and all-new songs by Leslie Bricusse (“Jekyll & Hyde,” “Doctor Dolittle”) and Anthony Newley. After nabbing their own golden tickets, Charlie and friends must navigate their way through a saccharine sweet story and find the real reason they were all brought together. The performance is fun for young and old, those who remember this classic tale, and those who are coming down the chocolate river for the first time.
The talented and dedicated community of artists at Detour Company Theatre live with a variety of disabilities, and they refuse to be silenced by their diagnoses.
“We want to shine onstage in Arizona,” said “Willy Wonka” actor LJ LaVancil. “You can’t limit our disabilities, what we want to achieve, what we want to do. We want to educate and inspire, and we are entertainers.”
Detour creates a vital space for honing creativity, building community and shaping social progress. Detour is committed to elevating the voices of their artists by making theater and drama truly accessible for a community that is severely underrepresented in visual and performing arts.
“Accessibility is about eliminating the obstacles that systemically prevent marginalized people from participating and purposefully creating a space for them to thrive,” said Detour’s artistic director, LaRiche Lamar. “It requires that we pinpoint our preconceived ideas of what is normal and open our minds to what is beautifully true. We are diverse. We are unique. We are worthy of the space to be ourselves.”
Detour Company Theatre stages its productions in June and January of each year at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, where Detour is a resident company. Natalie Marsh, director of Scottsdale Arts Learning & Innovation, said that making the arts accessible for all is a core component of the organization and that it’s partnerships like this, with Detour Company Theatre, that allow the arts to be welcoming for everyone who wants to thrive in their own spotlight.
“There is no other show in our entire season that fills our theater with as much joy as the Detour Company Theatre shows,” Marsh said. “I encourage everyone to nab their ‘golden ticket’ and come see, what I am sure will be, an amazing performance of ‘Willy Wonka.’”
Detour will have four showings of “Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka” at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. There will be one showing on Friday, January 7, at 7 p.m. On Saturday, January 8, there will be two showings at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., and one final showing will be on Sunday, January 9, at 3 p.m. Admission is free for all productions, but donations are accepted. RSVP at ScottsdalePerformingArts.org/events
For more information about Detour Company Theatre, visit DetourCompanyTheatre.org.