James William Productions and Stephenie Skyllas present Kurt Peterson and Victoria Mallory in When Everything Was Possible, A Concert (with comments), for one night only tonight, April 29th (7:30pm) at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues), as a benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. They are joined by a thirteen-piece band (Michael Rafter, Music Director), playing new orchestrations by Tony Award winner Jonathan Tunick. Larry Moss directs, with musical staging by Joshua Bergasse ("Smash"). Carolyn Wong provides lighting design, with sound design by Leon Rothenberg and projection design by Telegraphicmedia.
The show will also feature images of stage photography from the era's greatest photographers including Van Williams, Kenn Duncan, and others – many never before on public display. The concert, featuring songs from the shows they were in - including The Frog Prince, Aladdin, West Side Story, Dear World, Carnival, Dames at Sea, Follies, On the Town, A Little Night Music and Sondheim - A Musical Tribute - will have an out-of-town workshop/preview at the Triad Stage, in Greensboro, NC, in March.
This is the story of Victoria Mallory and Kurt Peterson in the present but also the story of New York, 1966 -'74, the last gasp of the golden age of the American Musical, when everything was possible. Following their inner music, two kids came to the biggest city in the world and went to work. They didn't want to be famous - they wanted to be good. Along the way they sang for Noel Coward, with Richard Rodgers, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Betty Comden, Adolph Green and Leonard Bernstein; hung out with Liz and Dick; sat in the Oval Office and the Apollo capsule; flew the Lunar Lander and crashed on the faux surface of the Moon. And in the summer of '68, as the world flew apart, these two unknowns held court at the State Theatre at Lincoln Center, captivating audiences as Tony and Maria in West Side Story. Together with the talented gangs of Jets and Sharks they made a statement about the world's bigotry and violence in a way that only words, music and dance can. They worked, lived, grew close, grew up, made mistakes and finally… parted. 36 years would pass until they would meet again, and they found they still had a few things left to say - and sing.
"How lucky we all are to have Victoria Mallory and Kurt Peterson back together again, and sharing their musical lives with us! The personal story told and sung by these two talented artists will take some of us back, and introduce others to a rich era in not-too-distant history. Two young kids arriving in New York, who find careers that touch some of the legendary people and legendary shows, is only the beginning. What happened, both professionally and personally, is quite remarkable," said Ted Chapin, President of the Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization, and Chair of the American Theater Wing.
Tickets from $60 may be purchased online at www.nycitycenter.org, by calling CityTix at 212/581-1212, or at the Box Office (131 West 55th St.). Special VIP tickets are available for $150 and include a post-show reception with the cast & creative team.
Victoria Mallory made her Broadway debut when Richard Rodgers and Leonard Bernstein chose her to star as Maria in the first revival of West Side Story at Lincoln Center. She went on to play Lili in City Center's revival of Carnival. For Harold Prince and Stephen Sondheim,Victoria originated the roles of Young Heidi in Follies and Anne Egerman in A Little Night Music. She also re-introduced and first recorded Stephen Sondheim songs in Sondheim - A Musical Tribute and in An Evening of Stephen Sondheim at The Whitney Museum. Victoria has starred in the nation's major theatres including Los Angeles Civic Light Opera, Pittsburgh CLO, St. Louis MUNY Opera, Atlanta's Theater of the Stars, Kansas City Starlight, Dallas Summer Musicals, Utah's Pioneer Theatre, and the Irish Rep in NYC, in roles as diverse as Christine/Carlotta in Phantom, Magnolia in Show Boat, Kate in Kiss Me Kate, Marian in The Music Man, Lily in The Secret Garden, Sarah in Guys and Dolls, Maria in The Sound of Musicand Abigail in 1776. Television audiences know Victoria as the concert pianist, Leslie Brooks from the CBS daytime drama, "The Young and The Restless" and Dr. Denise Foxworthy on NBC's "Santa Barbara." Other TV credits include guest starring roles on "Everwood," "Touched By An Angel," "Promised Land," the female lead in the made-for-television movie "The Unabomber," and three CBS musical specials: "The Emperor's New Clothes," "Aladdin," and "After Hours." She received an Emmy nomination for "Singin', Swingin, and All That Jazz."Victoria has been a professional director/choreographer for productions including The Wizard of Oz, Joseph…, Side by Side by Sondheim, and Yours, Anne, and choreographer for Oliver, Nuncrackers, Mr. Popper's Penguins and A Village Fable. Victoria is a founding member and teacher at The Voice Studio. Most recently, she was seen in A Child's Christmas in Wales at the Irish Repertory Theatre. Victoria is slated to star in the new Broadway musical, In the Summer of '68, in 2013.
Kurt Peterson began his career when Leonard Bernstein and Richard Rodgers chose him to play Tony in the revival of West Side Story at Lincoln Center. On Broadway he starred opposite Angela Lansbury in Dear World and created the role of Young Ben in Stephen Sondheim'sFollies. Off-Broadway Kurt starred in Dames at Sea and By Bernstein, and appeared in the Town Hall productions of Knickerbocker Holiday, Music in the Air and I Married an Angel. Kurt starred opposite Patti LuPone in the Broadway-bound The Baker's Wife. He also starred in the highly acclaimed Canadian premiere of Company and Rob Marshall's production of Side By Side By Sondheim. Kurt was featured in the 75th birthday celebrations Wall to Wall Sondheimand Children & Art honoring Stephen Sondheim and has performed as a leading man in many productions around the country and in Europe. Kurt and his company, James William Productions (JWP), produced the acclaimed Sondheim–A Musical Tribute, the first celebration of America's foremost composer/lyricist, helped launch the NY and London productions of Angela Lansbury's Gypsy, produced the live tours of WPIX-TV's classic children's show The Magic Garden, and the National Tour of Rob Marshall's innovative Side By Side By Sondheim. Recent projects include co-producing the New York productions and National Tour of the Stephen Schwartz family musical Captain Louie, the Off-Broadway production of the play Capture Now, directed by Larry Moss, and the BC/EFA benefit Alone At Last featuring the music of Ian Herman. JWP is currently represented by the Helen Hayes and Drama Desk Award winning play, Zero Hour, about theatre legend Zero Mostel, now touring the US andCanada. In 2013 look for the new musical In the Summer of '68. Kurt is the owner of New York City's The Voice Studio, home to more than 300 students and some of Broadway's greatest teachers and performers. For more information, visit www.jameswilliamproductions.com
Larry Moss (Director) began his career on Broadway in Drat! The Cat!, Neil Simon's God's Favorite, directed by Michael Bennett, So Long 174th Street, The Robber Bridgegroom, and I Love My Wife. After teaching at Julliard and Circle in the Square, he moved to Los Angelesand founded The Larry Moss Studio, where he directed and developed Pamela Gien's The Syringa Tree, which won the Obie Award for Best Play, Drama Desk and Outer Circle Critics Awards, a Drama League Honor and a nomination for the John Gassner Playwriting Award.The Syringa Tree has played to sold-out houses worldwide. Moss also directed the TV adaptation. He developed and directed Bo Eason's Runt of the Litter, voted one of the top ten plays of the year by NY Daily News and bought by Castle Rock to be made into a major motion picture. Moss directed Michael Raynor's Who is Floyd Stearn; Richard Kalinoski's Beast on the Moon; Jack Holmes's RFK (Drama League Award); April Daisy White's Sugar; Richard Vetere's How to Go Out on a Date in Queens; Richard Hellersen's Dos Corazones (play and film); and the World Premiere of Jam, starring Clint Holmes. He did a workshop of John Osborne's Epitaph for George Dillon in New York for the first time in fifty years in 2008. He directed Capture Now, I Love My Wife starring Jason Alexander, John Patrick Shanley'sBeggars in the House of Plenty, and Imagining Heschel. He will be directing the films Relative Insanity, and Chiseled. Moss coached Sutton Foster in Broadway's Anything Goes (Tony Award); Helen Hunt in As Good As It Gets (Academy Award); Hilary Swank in Boys Don't Cryand Million Dollar Baby (Academy Awards); Michael Clarke Duncan in The Green Mile(Academy Award nomination); Hank Azaria in Tuesdays With Morrie (Emmy Award); Jim Carrey in The Majestic; Tobey Maguire in Seabiscuit; Leonardo DiCaprio in The Aviator(Golden Globe Award and Academy Award nomination); The Departed (Golden Globe nomination); Blood Diamond (Golden Globe and Academy Award nomination); Shutter Islandand Inception. Moss's teaching career includes US, Canada and Europe; he is one of the master teachers on "Triple Sensation," for CBC in Canada. His book on acting, The Intent To Live, was released by Bantam Dell.
Michael Rafter (Music Director) is involved in everything music. He wrote scoring and arrangements for Arthur (2011) starring Russell Brand, was the music supervisor for Broadway's Everyday Rapture and worked on Sutton Foster's National Tour. He was the Associate Music Supervisor for Jersey Boys Australian production and has traveled the globe with many Jersey Boys productions. Sutton Foster and Michael collaborated on her solo CD'sWish (2009) and Sutton Foster, Live at The Carlyle (2011). He also co-produced Norm Lewis's solo CD, This Is The Life, and the recording of Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori's Broadway show, Caroline, Or Change. Michael conducted Gypsy on Broadway starring Tyne Daly and won an Emmy Award for his music direction of Bette Midler's TV version. Movie music credits include Music and Lyrics and Did You Hear about the Morgans? On Broadway, Michael has served as music director/conductor of Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Sound of Music, The King & I and Gypsy and did the arrangements for Swing and Sweet Charity. He was one of the 2 piano duos that played the Broadway revival of The Most Happy Fella. He has supervised Broadway and/or National tours of Thoroughly Modern Millie, Sunset Boulevard, The Sound of Music, and The Buddy Holly Story. Off-Broadway credits include Merrily We Roll Along andViolet. Michael was the music director/conductor for The American Songbook series at Alice Tully Hall, music director for "Broadway's Best" on Bravo where he worked with such artists as Trisha Yearwood, Kevin Bacon, Joan Osborne, MAndy Moore, Cyndi Lauper, Darius Rucker, and Shawn Colvin. Michael is the co-founder of Destination Broadway, a summer theatre program for children 8-18 years old. Currently, he is working as music director/arranger for the upcoming revival of The Unsinkable Molly Brown.
Joshua Bergasse (Musical Staging) is a NYC based teacher and choreographer and has been a member of the Broadway Dance Center Faculty since 1998. His credits as a choreographer include American Songbooks; Fascinatin' Rhythm (Allen Room, Jazz @ Lincoln Center); The Face Of Tisch, Gala 2010 (Rose Hall, Jazz @ Lincoln Center); Bomb-Itty Of Errors (Off-Broadway); Captain Louie (Little Shubert, York Theater); BC/EFA's Gypsy Of The Year Opener for 2007 and 2008 (New Amsterdam Theatre); Fame The Musical (National & International Tours); Solo Pido - Bianca Marroquin In Concert (Mexico City); West Side Story(Stratford Festival, Barrington Stage Company, Fulton Theatre, North Carolina Theatre);Carousel, The World Goes 'Round (Barrington Stage); La Cage..., Beehive, Cagney (Riverside Theatre); Smokey Joe's Cafe (AMTSJ, Maltz Jupiter Theatre, Riverside); Tommy, South Pacific, Crash Nation (Cherry County Playhouse); The Baker Dances (Indiana University.) Joshua has performed in the Broadway and/or National touring companies of Movin Out, Hairspray, The Life, and West Side Story. Besides being on faculty at BDC, Josh is the artistic director for the Musical Theater Performance Project at BDC, and has been a guest artist at NYU, Marymount Manhattan College, Indiana University, James Madison University,Shenendoah University, Kean University, Creighton University and the University of California Satellite program. He's toured with Manhattan DanceProject, West Coast Dance Explosion, and Tremaine. Joshua is currently represented by Stephen Speilberg's television show "Smash!" which premieres February 6th on NBC starring Debra Messing, Megan Hilty, Katharine McPhee and Anjelica Houston.
Jonathan Tunick is the first orchestrator to have won a Tony Award®; indeed he is one of very few persons to have won all four major American awards in entertainment: the Grammy® ("No One Is Alone," 1988), Emmy® ("Night of 100 Stars," 1982), Tony® (Titanic, 1997), and Oscar® (A Little Night Music, 1977). Additionally, he has received Drama Desk Awards forPassion, Titanic, and Lovemusik, and has been showered with nominations: seven Tony® nominations for Best Orchestration (Marie Christine, Follies, Nine, Pacific Overtures,Lovemusik, 110 in the Shade, A Catered Affair) and eight times for the Drama Desk (Baby, Into the Woods, Captains Courageous, Saturday Night, Follies, Elaine Stritch At Liberty, The Apple Tree, A Catered Affair). In 1982 he was given a Special Award by the Drama Desk. Although Tunick has been associated most closely with Stephen Sondheim (Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Pacific Overtures, Sweeney Todd, Merrily We Roll Along, Into the Woods,Passion, Putting It Together, The Frogs), he has also worked with composers Charles Strouse (Dance a Little Closer, Nick & Nora), Maury Yeston (Nine, Titanic), Marvin Hamlisch (A Chorus Line), Michael John LaChiusa (Marie Christine), and many others. Tunick has orchestrated, re-orchestrated, or composed for nearly sixty stage shows, from Take Five in 1957 to the revival of Promises, Promises in 2010; thirteen films, from The Twelve Chairs in 1970 to Sweeney Todd in 2007 (including Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, A Little Night Music, Fort Apache the Bronx, Endless Love, and Reds); and dozens scores for television.
Theodore S. Chapin is President and Executive Director of The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization. Currently he is Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Theater Wing. He has also been chairman of the Advisory Committee for New York City Center's Encores! series since its inception, and serves on several boards including Goodspeed Musicals, Connecticut College, and City Center. He served as a Tony Awards nominator for two seasons, and is currently a member of the Tony Administration Committee. His career began as production or directorial assistant for the Broadway productions of Follies, The Rothschilds and The Unknown Soldier and His Wife, as well as Bernstein's Mass at the Kennedy Center, and Candide in San Francisco. As Associate to Alan Arkin, he worked on the original Broadway production of Neil Simon's The Sunshine Boys, Twigs starring Carol Burnett (CBS); and Neil Cuthbert's The Soft Touch. He was Musical Director for The National Theatre of the Deaf's production of Four Saints in Three Acts, and Producer of the Musical Theatre Lab. His book, Everything Was Possible: The Birth of the Musical "Follies," was published by Alfred A. Knopf, and in paperback by Applause Books.
Stephenie Skyllas (Producer) is an independent theatrical producer and general manager. Her recent credits include producing The Chalkboard Trilogy for Up Theater Company andTales From The Tunnel Off-Broadway at the Bleecker Street Theater. Stephenie spent five seasons at New York City Center as General Manager that included fifteen Encores!, threeEncores! Summer Stars (Gypsy with Patti LuPone; Damn Yankees with Sean Hayes & Jane Krakowski; The Wiz with Ashanti), A Gala Evening with Kristin Chenoweth and the Sondheim 80th Birthday Gala. Other NY credits include work at Roundabout Theatre Company, Richard Frankel Productions and Manhattan Theatre Club. Stephenie is a member of Essential Voices USA with whom she's had the joy of singing at the 2011 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting with Neil Diamond (broadcast on NBC), Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space, and recording "Mr. President" (featured on NPR). Stephenie and her company, Over~Sky Productions, also serve as general manager for When Everything Was Possible, A Concert (with comments).
Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is one of the nation's leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fundraising and grant-making organizations. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the American theatre community, since 1988 BC/EFA has raised more than $195 million for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the United States. BC/EFA awards annual grants to more than 400 AIDS and family service organizations nationwide and is the major supporter of seven programs at The Actors Fund, including the HIV/AIDS Initiative, the Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative and the Al Hirschfeld Free Health Clinic. For more information, visit www.broadwaycares.org.