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PCPA summer season set to debut in Solvang Festival Theater

The curtain is about to rise on another exciting summer season for the Pacific Conservatory Theatre (PCPA).

Since 1974, the theatre company has taken its world-class productions on-the-road, from Santa Maria south to the Solvang Festival Theater.

The 700-seat outdoor venue is a favorite for audience members from both near and far.

“There’s just something incredible about seeing a play outside, under the stars, where the canopy over all of our heads is the same and it’s celestial,” said Mark Booher, PCPA Artisitic Director. “There’s just something incredibly magical about that.”

The theater has played host to over 200 PCPA productions. Each one has been as unique as the theater itself.

“The atmosphere from the moment you get there, from the town itself, you can take a picnic, enjoy some time with your family and friends before the show and then all the way through the final curtain is just a night of special memories,” said Katie Wackowski, PCPA resident artist.

This summer, the Festival Theater will be the site for four PCPA productions, including two that previously ran in the Marian Theatre on the Allan Hancock College campus in Santa Maria.

Leading off the season on June 15 is the classic Beauty and the Beast.

“It was terrifically successful in Marian Theatre in Santa Maria seen by over 19,000 people, really enjoyed by our audiences and we’re thrilled to have opportunity to bring it back,” said Booher.

The show ran as PCPA’s holiday performance last December and regularly sold out. The encore performance is expected to be just as popular, if not more.

“It’s a story about at its core humanity, finding out about who you are inside and figuring out how to love others and that’s something that never gets old,” said Booher.

For those who saw the show last year in Santa Maria, they’re invited back to experience the magic, enchantment and romance all over again.

“Anytime you change locations, it’s going to bring a different flavor to it and when you see shows multiple times, you catch different things and different meanings,” said Wackowski.

Beauty and the Beast will run through July 2. Next up for the season schedule is Lend Me A Tenor The Musical.

“It is a really fun farce, lots of mistaken identities and almost deaths and just a riot,” said Wackowski. “A completely different writing style, which is exciting.”

Lend Me A Tenor will run in Solvang from July 6-23. After that, PCPA will hold the regional debut of Disney’s Newsies The Musical. The Tony Award-winning musical runs from July 27-August 20. It also plays in the Marian Theatre from July 19-22.

Closing out the Solvang portion of the summer season is Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, which runs from August 24-September 10. The show runs in the Marian Theatre from August 16-19.

The summer season official wraps in Santa Maria with the Pultizer and Tony Award-winning Fences. The family drama will be held in the Marian Theatre from September 15-October 1.

All show times for Solvang performances will be 8 p.m.

For more information on PCPA shows, news, tickets and more, visit

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