Tony and Tina are getting married this weekend, and you’re invited to their boisterous nuptials.
One of the show’s producers, who has been helping put together the performances for 25 years, is Connecticut College assistant lacrosse coach Dan Corcoran. In this show, the team will serve as an inspiration for Tony’s character history, which will include an education at Conn College and time on the Camels’ lacrosse team.
“With this production you can actually change the storyline,” said Corcoran.
The audience as a key role in Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, with plenty of opportunities to interact with the actors and become part of the show. While the show involves 25 cast and crew for the titular roles and other parts, attendees stand in as members of the wedding party.
The ticket price even includes a wedding dinner of pasta, wedding cake, and a champagne toast. Guests are asked to wear traditional wedding attire or business casual wear; anyone in jeans and a T-shirt won’t be turned away, according to the show’s website, but rather “will have to answer to Mrs. Vitale, Tina's mom.”
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“It’s a love story around a wedding. If you think of a real wedding it’s all happening around you,” said Corcoran. “So if you’re sitting by the band you’re going to see a different show than if you’re at one of the family tables.”
Corcoran said he and his brother Joe were working on Wall Street when they helped a group of friends, who were acting in an improv group called Artificial Intelligence, to set up a full-time production. Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding premiered in Greenwich Village on Valentine’s Day in 1988.
Since then, Corcoran says, different casts and crews have played in more than 200 venues around the world. The show bills itself as the longest running off-Broadway production.
The players who put on the regular New York City performance will be traveling to the region for this weekend’s show. It will be the first time Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding has come to the area since an appearance at Foxwoods Resort Casino, which Corcoran said occurred five or six years ago.
Members of the lacrosse team and its parents’ association have helped arrange the show, with activities including set construction and ticket sales. Corcoran said the team has put on fundraisers to assist with costs incurred during the season.
“The school can only pay for so much,” he said. “If you want new helmets each year, if you want new gloves, if you want to travel, you have to make additional money.”
The show will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Groton Inn & Suites in Groton. Tickets may be purchased at the show’s website and range from $75 to $200. The performance may be inappropriate for young children and children under the age of four are not permitted.
“It’s a perfect date night and there’s a reason it’s been running for 25 years,” said Corcoran. “It’s just a fun story that you can interact with.”