The Hilton Sisters
The Hilton Sisters
Producer-director Ryan Mekenian will present the Henry Krieger-Bill Russell musical Side Show at Off-Broadway's American Theatre of Actors from August 31 through September 3, 2006. Produced and directed by Ryan Mekenian, the production will be the first in Manhattan since the musical premiered on Broadway in 1997.

Side Show is based on the real-life story of conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton, who will be played in the new production by Carey McCray and Dawn Cantwell; it follows the sisters from their humble beginnings among the "freaks" of a circus sideshow to their rise to fame on the vaudeville circuit and, eventually, in Hollywood. Dane Agostinis, Josh Isaacs, Kevin Bradley, Jr., and Nathan Brisby will also be featured in the new production. Billy Griffin will serve as choreographer and Mike Pettry as musical director. The design team consists of Elisha Shaefer, David Mendizabal, and Dan Scully.

Having studied directing at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, Mekenian has recently initiated a "summer stock" program within the school's musical theater writing program, through which new musicals will be fully produced for the first time at NYU. He is currently assisting Harold Prince and Alfred Uhry on LoveMusik, which has an eye toward Broadway; his credits as a director include productions of Parade and Merrily We Roll Along.

Side Show will be performed on August 31, September 1 and 2 at 8pm, with matinees on September 2 and 3 at 2pm at the American Theatre of Actors, located at 314 West 54th Street (between Eighth and Ninth avenues) in Manhattan. Tickets will be available as of August 1.