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UW Snowy Range Summer Theatre Season Opens with ‘First Date’

June 4, 2019

That most perilous of human endeavors, the dreaded blind date, takes center stage in the 2019 Snowy Range Summer Theatre season opener “First Date,” a lighthearted musical comedy and a date night out for attendees.

Presented by the University of Wyoming Department of Theatre and Dance, and directed by Patrick Konesko, with musical direction by Sean Stone, “First Date” runs June 11-15 at 7:30 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts Thrust Theatre.

Tickets cost $10 for the public and $7 for students, senior citizens and children over age 5. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more people. Tickets are available at the Performing Arts box office and the Wyoming Union information desk, by calling (307) 766-6666 or going online at

“First Date” premiered on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre in 2013, featuring Zachary Levi (“Shazam!” and “Chuck”) and Krysta Rodriguez (“The Addams Family” and “Smash”). The musical, featuring a book by Austin Winsberg and music and lyrics by Alan Zachary and Michael Weiner, has been seen in more than 50 productions around the world, including Japan, Mexico, Argentina, Greece, Italy, Israel, France, England and Australia.

“We wanted to produce something light, fun and accessible for summer theater, but that also would challenge our performers and speak directly to audiences about their relationships and perspectives on the world,” Konesko says.

The story follows a square finance guy and dating newbie Aaron, and cynical and artsy serial romancer Casey, whose prearranged “quick drink” together morphs into a high-stakes dinner. As the date unfolds in real time, the couple quickly finds that they are not alone on this unpredictable evening. In an unexpected twist, Casey and Aaron’s inner critics take on a life of their own when other restaurant patrons transform into supportive best friends, manipulative exes and protective parents, who sing and dance them through icebreakers, appetizers and potential conversational land mines.

Intrigued by the way the musical deals with the type of snap judgments people make about one another, Konesko wanted to direct the production.

“I think we have a tendency to expect perfection from others while simultaneously recognizing and forgiving our own failings, because we know the context, the circumstances that contributed to our failures regardless of our good intentions,” he says. “This musical uses lighthearted steps into memory and fantasy to show us some of that context for others and asks us to have a bit more compassion for those around us.”

“First Date” contains language and themes that some might find objectionable.

For more information about the summer theater season, call Kathy Kirkaldie, UW Fine Arts coordinator, at (307) 766-2160 or email

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