Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

July 23-27: Thom Sesma and Sklyer Adams Star in Music Theatre Wichita’s Catch Me If You Can

Thom Sesma and Skyler Adams. Photo by Christopher Clark

Thom Sesma and Skyler Adams. Photo by Christopher Clark

Continuing the 43rd season for Music Theatre Wichita, the fourth of this summer’s five large-scale productions is the Kansas premiere of Catch Me If You Can, at Century II Concert Hall, 225 W Douglas Ave, Wichita, KS, with performances Wednesday, July 23-27, 2014. Click here to purchase tickets.

Thom Sesma (The Times They Are A-Changin‘, Miss Saigon, Sweeney Todd), who starred in The King and I last summer at Music Theatre Wichita, returns to star as  FBI agent Carl Hanratty, opposite Skyler Adams (Pippin understudy in the upcoming national tour of Pippin) as Frank Jr. Featured as Frank’s dysfunctional parents are Broadway veterans David Hess (Ragtime, Sweeney Todd) and Paula Leggett Chase (Curtains, Crazy for You). Carolyn Anne Miller portrays love interest Brenda, a role she recently essayed at the Wagon Wheel Playhouse, and Wichita-based actors Karen L. Robu and Timothy W. Robu portray her parents.

Thom Sesma and Skyler Adams. Photo by Christopher Clark

Thom Sesma and Skyler Adams. Photo by Christopher Clark

With book by Terrence McNally and a score by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, Catch Me If You Can is based on the autobiography of teenaged con man Frank Abagnale Jr., and on the DreamWorks motion picture directed by Steven Spielberg. Before reaching the age of 21, Abagnale had forged checks worth millions of dollars, but eluded the FBI by assuming different personas, including a lawyer, an emergency room doctor, and a Pan Am pilot.

Kevin Clay and Thom Sesma. Photo by Christopher Clark

Kevin Clay and Thom Sesma. Photo by Christopher Clark

Other artistic collaborators on the Wichita edition of Catch Me If You Can include Thomas W. Douglas as musical director, set designer Robert Andrew Kovach, costume designer Dixon Reynolds, hair and wig designer Alena Sellers, sound designer David Muehl, and lighting designer David Neville.

More information, including a video Sneak Peek, can be found at

Thom Sesma

Thom Sesma

THOM SESMA (Carl Hanratty) is absolutely delighted to return to MTWichita, where he appeared last season playing one of the title roles in the immortal R&H classic The King and I, and where he appeared in Paint Your Wagon (1992) and Gigi (1994). He is particularly thrilled to be working with director Wayne Bryan for the first time since they met when Wayne directed him in a San Diego high school production of You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown in 1973, excited for another chance to get it right after all these years. Last year, Thom was nominated for a Helen Hayes Award for his performance as The Engineer in Eric Schaeffer’s new and re-imagined production of Miss Saigon at the Signature Theatre in DC. Other theatre credits include leading roles on Broadway and on tour in The Times They Are A-Changin’, The Lion King, Search & Destroy, Titanic, and Chu Chem. Off-Broadway credits include NSYF/Public Theatre, the Roundabout, Second Stage, The Drama Department, The Mint, NAATCO, Epic Theatre and, most recently, playing a harried travel agent and 17 insane clients in the hit comedy Craving for Travel at the Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Playwrights Horizon. Numerous regional credits include many plays, musicals and classical theatre at The Old Globe, Yale Rep, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Cincinnati Playhouse, The McCarter, Two River Theatre Co., Arena Stage, Baltimore Center Stage, many more. Some TV and Film credits: “The Good Wife,” “Single Ladies,” “Third Watch,” “Law & Order,” “Canterbury’s Law,” “Over/Under,” “Lay The Favorite,” “Building Girl,” and getting shot point-blank in the head in “Person of Interest.” Directing credits include Jennifer Camp’s Natural History (Walnut Street Theatre), Life (x) 3 (Repertory Theatre of St. Louis), and Outcry (NAATCO), along with Hair, Lend Me a Tenor, The Drawer Boy, Once in a Lifetime, Waiting for Lefty, Phantom!, Me and My Girl, and others in various regional, university and stock theatres across the country.

Other articles on Thom Sesma:
Thom Sesma and Michele Ragusa Star in Greg Edwards & Andy Sandberg’s Craving for Travel through February 9, 2014 
Photos: Backstage Q & A with Thom Sesma and the cast of Signature’s Miss Saigon
Jan. 9 – Feb. 9: Thom Sesma and Michele Ragusa to Star in Off-Broadway World Premiere of CRAVING FOR TRAVEL at Peter J. Sharp Theater
A Summer in Bangkok for Thom Sesma, Star of Signature’s Miss Saigon
Production Photos: Music Theatre of Wichita’s The King and I Starring Thom Sesma, Kim Huber, Alan Ariano, Karl Josef Co, Kay Trinidad, Tami Swartz at Century II Performing Arts Center through July 14, 2013
Christine Toy Johnson, Thom Sesma, Ali Ewolt, Jose Llana, Ann Harada, Telly Leung and More Set for The Asian American Composers and Lyricists Project at The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre on May 19, 2013
Thom Sesma, Francis Jue, Robin de Jesus and John Tartaglia set for MUNY’s Aladdin, July 5-13
Thom Sesma is the keynote speaker for the Library of Congress celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) at the Mary Pickford Theater on May 17
Photos & Video Disney’s The Lion King Las Vegas-In the Makeup Chair with Thom Sesma
Spotlight on Shanghai Moon’s Thom Sesma
Photos: Highlights of Shinsai: Theaters for Japan (3pm) with Andre Bishop, Mary Beth Hurt, Jennifer Lim, Angela Lin, Philip Kan Gotanda, Thom Sesma, Sab Shimono, Richard Thomas, Jay O. Sanders, and more
Photos: Highlights of Shinsai: Theaters for Japan (8pm) with Oskar Eustis, Patti LuPone, Lisa Emery, Ann Harada, Paolo Montalban, Thom Sesma, Sab Shimono, Henry Stram, Richard Thomas, John Weidman and more
Extended through 8/23- “In Rehearsal” Lia Chang Theater Portfolio at Library of Congress Featuring Robert Lee and Leon Ko’s Heading East Starring BD Wong, Thom Sesma as Scar in The Lion King Las Vegas
Photos: On the town with Rick Shiomi, Co-Editor of “Asian American Plays for a New Generation”, in D.C. & NY
Backstage at The Lion King Las Vegas with Thom Sesma
Thom Sesma as Scar in The Lion King at Mandalay bay
Thom Sesma, Peter Kim and Andrew Cristi star in Durango
Thom Sesma Stars in Jeanne Sakata’s Dawn’s Light: The Journey of Gordon Hirabayashi
Thom Sesma in The Epic Theatre Ensemble’s A HARD HEART

Other articles by Lia Chang:
July 23-26: 2g’s Workshop Production of Galois at the New Ohio Theatre’s Ice Factory Festival 2014; Donate to Campaign
July 24: Sold to Open 37th Asian American International Film Festival in New York
Joe Mantegna, Delta Burke, Gerald McRaney, President Bill Clinton and More Remember Meshach Taylor
Photos: Meshach Taylor Celebrates 67th Birthday with Arlene and Joe Mantegna, Delta Burke, Gerald McRaney, Jean Smart, Dennis Franz, Ernie Hudson, John Heard, Keith Szarabajka, Stuart Gordon, Shadoe Stevens and More
June 22 – July 27: Blair Underwood, Richard Thomas and Kristen Connolly Lead the Cast of The Old Globe’s Othello, helmed by Barry Edelstein 
Late Night Singing with Garth Kravits at 54 Below with The Skivvies, at Jim Caruso’s Cast Party at Birdland and Michael Raye’s Soul Gathering
Photos and Video: Ben Vereen Performs at Carnegie Hall in The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream
Photos and Video: Obba Babatunde and cast members from the original cast of Dreamgirls perform at Carnegie Hall in The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream
Photos & Video: The Wiz’s André De Shields Sang “So You Wanted to Meet the Wizard” in The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream at Carnegie Hall
June 23: André De Shields, Billy Porter, Chuck Cooper, Brandon Victor Dixon, Clifton Davis, Norm Lewis, Chapman Roberts and More Set for The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream at Carnegie Hall
Remembering Frank Trenholm Lyman III, 1968-2014; Fund Established for The Lyman Children
Remembering Civil Rights Activist Yuri Kochiyama, 1921-2014
Ruby Dee, Actress and Activist, 1922 – 2014
Fred Korematsu, American Hero and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 86
July 31-Aug. 3: Drama Desk Nominee Joel de la Fuente stars in Jeanne Sakata’s Hold These Truths at ACT, Helmed by Lisa Rothe
Bryan Cranston, Audra McDonald, Neil Patrick Harris, Jessie Mueller, Lena Hall, Sophie Okonedo, Kenny Leon, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, All The Way, A Raisin in the Sun, Hedwig and the Angry Inch and More Take Home 2014 Tony Awards
Lucille Lortel Awards for Here Lies Love, Fun Home, The Open House, Good Person of Szechwan
Branden Jacob-Jenkins’ Appropriate, Lisa Kron’s Fun Home, Sonya Tayeh, Emmanuel Brown, Mia Katigbak, K. Todd Freeman, John Earl Jelks Among 2014 OBIE Award Winners
Photos: André Braugher, Ami Brabson, Christine Toy Johnson, Antoinette LaVecchia, Richard Topol, Victor Williams, Nikkole Salter, Elizabeth Van Dyke at Oni Faida Lampley’s Tough Titty at the Paradise Factory
Photos: Backstage and Opening Night of Signature’s World Premiere of David Henry Hwang’s Kung Fu
Photos: David Henry Hwang, Annie Baker and Rajiv Joseph honored at Sixth Annual Steinberg Playwright “Mimi” Awards Photos: The 58th Annual Drama Desk Awards and After Party
Crafting a Career
Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia recently starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, Lorey Hayes, Marcus Naylor and Phynjuar, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York.  She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2014 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at


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