James Goldman and Stephen Sondheim's Follies, which was just nominated for eight Tony Awards, begins previews tonight, May 3 at 8 p.m. at the Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre. Performances of the exclusive Los Angeles engagement of the Kennedy Center's critically acclaimed Broadway production of Follies will continue through June 9, 2012. Opening is set for May 9.
With book by James Goldman and music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, "Follies" is directed by Eric Schaeffer with choreography by Warren Carlyle and music direction by James Moore, scenic design by Derek McLane, costume design by Gregg Barnes, lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Kai Harada and the original orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick.
When former members of the "Weismann Follies" reunite on the eve of their theatre's demolition, two couples remember their past and face the harsher realities of the present. Reminiscing about their younger selves and the years gone by, the crumbling theatre brings back memories for both couples of good times and bad. Containing such well-known songs as "Broadway Baby," "I'm Still Here," "Too Many Mornings," "Could I Leave You?" and "Losing My Mind," "Follies" echoes the songs, exuberance and romance of the vaudeville days between the two World Wars.
"Follies" stars four-time Tony Award-nominee Jan Maxwell as Phyllis Rogers Stone, Tony Award-winner Victoria Clark as Sally Durant Plummer, two-time Tony Award-nominee Danny Burstein as Buddy Plummer, three-time Emmy Award-nominee Ron Raines as Benjamin Stone and Olivier Award winner Elaine Paige as Carlotta Campion. Maxwell, Burstein, Raines and Paige are all returning to the roles they originated on Broadway.
"Follies" features a 28-piece orchestra and a cast of 41. Also returning to their roles are Christian Delcroix as Young Buddy, Colleen Fitzpatrick as Dee Dee West, Lora Lee Gayer as Young Sally, Michael Hayes as Roscoe, Leah Horowitz as Young Heidi, Tony Award-nominee Jayne Houdyshell as Hattie Walker, Florence Lacey as Sandra Crane, Tony Award-nominee Mary Beth Peil as Solange LaFitte, David Sabin as Dimitri Weismann, Kirsten Scott as Young Phyllis, Frederick Strother as Max Deems, Nick Verina as Young Ben, Tony Award-nominee Susan Watson as Emily Whitman, and Terri White as Stella Deems. They are joined by Grammy Award-winner Carol Neblett as Heidi Schiller and Tony Award-winner Sammy Williams as Theodore Whitman.
Rounding out the ensemble, the majority of whom are returning, are Allison Briner, John Carroll, Mathew deGuzman, Sara Edwards, Nathaniel Flatt, Leslie Donna Flesner, Jenifer Foote, Danielle Jordan, Amanda Kloots-Larsen, Joseph Kolinski, Joe Komara, Brittany Marcin, Erin N. Moore, Jessica Perrizo, Andrew Pirozzi, Pamela Otterson, Angel Reda, Clifton Samuels, Becky Elizabeth Stout and Sam Strasfeld.
Elaine Paige is appearing with the support of Actors' Equity Association. The producers gratefully acknowledge Actors' Equity Association for its assistance to this production.
Originally produced on Broadway by Harold Prince with orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick, "Follies" opened on April 4, 1971, and starred Dorothy Collins, John McMartin, Gene Nelson and Alexis Smith. It ran for 522 performances in the Winter Garden Theatre and received seven Tony Awards, including Best Original Score. The Kennedy Center production played a highly successful six-week run in the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater (May 7 to June 19, 2011) going on to a critically acclaimed limited engagement on Broadway at the Marquis Theatre closing on January 22, 2012 after 38 previews and 152 regular performances.
Tickets for "Follies" are available by calling (213) 972-4400 or online at www.CenterTheatreGroup.org or in person at the CTG box office located at the Ahmanson Theatre at the Music Center.