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Musical fit for audiences of all ages runs July 15 to Aug. 21 in Lake Oswego; tickets available now.

COURTESY PHOTO: LAKEWOOD - See "The Kiss" with (left to right) Gladys, a malevolent witch (Emily Sahler), Arro (Keaton Fields) a frog, Princess Ember (Sophie MacKay), the King (Doug Webster), and Raoul, a ratfish knight (Collin Carver) in at Lakewood Theatre Company, July 15 -August 21, 2022.Production of "The Kiss," an original musical comedy coming to Lakewood Theater Company July 15 to Aug. 21, has been years in the making.

The renowned claymation animator Will Vinton originally created "The Kiss," which is loosely based on the Brothers Grimm classic fairytale "The Frog Prince." Directors and producers tried to bring the story to audiences as an animated movie and Broadway show before finally finding success producing it for the Headlee Mainstage at Lakewood.

"The Kiss" will run Thursdays through Saturdays, with two Wednesday night performances Aug. 3 and Aug 17. Tickets are $42 for adults and $40 for seniors. Find more information on show times and ticket deals at lakewood-center.org.

Director Greg Tamblyn said "The Kiss" is more contemporary than Disney's "Princess and the Frog" and has a "real fresh feel."

The music, Tamblyn said, ranges from the ilk of Justin Beiber and The Weeknd to classical musical theater numbers like those of "Beauty and the Beast."

Because this is a premiering musical, preparation has been wild, Tamblyn said. The cast and crew have been working full-tilt to prepare the show for opening.

"It's been tricky, but it's been fulfilling because 90% of it has worked perfectly," according to Tamblyn.

The difficult part is making sure the story makes sense after edits, Tamblyn said. In re-writes, Tamblyn explained, the creators have to trim and make cuts while still ensuring the story is understandable to audiences who do not have the same knowledge the artists have from working on the show for years.

Tamblyn is excited to see the culmination of the efforts of so many people.

"Because of (Vinton's) legacy and because of how important this project was to him, the thing I'm most excited about is the promise that I made to him — that this show would be on stage — is going to happen," Tamblyn said. "His dream will be on stage."

Tamblyn expressed awe at how the cast and crew created an entirely new world that didn't exist a year ago.

"The artistic team, the costume designer, the set designer, the make-up artist, the lighting designer — anybody who is touching this is not going off of anyone else's pallet. This is all brand new," he said. "All the people that have touched this musical have brought so much to the quality and the style and the beauty of the show. Given any other combination, I'm not sure it would have happened."


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