Looking for a fun date night or considering celebrating Valentine’s a week late to beat the crowd? Look no further than Enlightened Theatrics’ production of First Date, a hilarious musical that sheds light on the uncomfortable and embarrassing nature of blind dating. With music by Alan Zachary, lyrics by Michael Weiner and a book by Austin Winsberg, First Date is a contemporary pop-rock musical that premiered in Seattle in 2012 and opened on Broadway in 2013.

Casey and Aaron are two 30-ish New York City singles set up by friends. The two have nothing in common: Aaron is a conservative banker, Jewish, and looking for a meaningful relationship, while Casey is an artist, a shiksa, and a little too funky for Wall Street. With the influences of their friends and family as well as the effects of social media, this first date seems to be doomed. But with the help of a meddling but well-meaning waiter, Casey and Aaron might make a connection after all.


Enlightened is thrilled to be bringing back several familiar faces as well as welcoming a few new talents to the stage at Salem’s Historic Grand Theatre. Alex Foufos (Salem, OR), who was last seen at Enlightened as Charlie Brown in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown plays our leading man, Aaron. Hillary Hoover (Portland, OR), another Enlightened veteran most recently seen as Kate Monster in Avenue Q, returns to play a variety of roles in First Date. Dylan Bauman (Dallas, OR), also plays a variety of roles in our production and was last seen on the Enlightened Stage as Brad in The Rocky Horror Show. New to Enlightened’s stage are Molly Duddlesten (Corvallis, OR) as our leading lady, Casey and Logan Burt (Albany, OR), who plays the matchmaking waiter, among others. Molly and Logan were both in Albany Civic Theatre’s production of Mamma Mia!.


First Date is directed by Melody Erfani (Portland, OR) and helmed by Stage Manager Aubrey Jean Near, assisted by Joy Coulson. The New York City lounge ambiance has been created by a production team consisting of Avi Shehan (Lighting Design), Nic Wilson (Scenic Design, Properties Design, Scenic Charge), Michael Wardrop (Costume Design), and Preston Oliver (Sound Design). Technical staff include: Jack Meng as Technical Director, Claire Zaro as Master Electrician, and Alex Hussey as the Sound Engineer. The live onstage, 5-piece band will be led under Music Director Devin Desmond.

• First Date opens Friday, February 21 and runs through Sunday, March 15.
• Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2:30 p.m.
• Preview Performances (with talkback following each performance) occur
Wednesday, February 19 and Thursday, February 20 for $10.
• Tickets may be purchased online anytime at www.EnlightenedTheatrics.org, by calling 503.585.3427x 1 or in person at 187 High Street NE Suite 209 in downtown Salem.
• Box Office hours are noon to 5:00 p.m. Wednesday through Friday in Suite 209 and two hours prior to every performance at Salem’s Historic Grand Theatre’s box office.


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