Jack Viertel, Artistic Director of New York City Center's Encores! series, today announced directors for the 2010-11 Encores! season: Kathleen Marshall will direct and choreograph the season opener, Bells Are Ringing, with music by Jule Styne and book and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, opening on November 18, 2010. Gary Griffin will direct Lost in the Stars, with music by Kurt Weill and book and lyrics by Maxwell Anderson, opening on February 3, 2011. John Doyle will direct Where's Charley, based on BranDon Thomas' Charley's Aunt, with book by George Abbott and music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, opening on March 17, 2011. Music Director Rob Berman will conduct all three musicals.
In Bells Are Ringing, a lonely young woman who runs an answering service falls for a client she has met only by voice, and classic 1950s mayhem ensues. The score, by turns brassy, sweet and romantic, includes "Just in Time," "The Party's Over," "I Met a Girl," "Long Before I Knew You" and a fistful of other great tunes from one of Broadway's greatest tunesmiths. The original production opened at the Shubert Theater on November 29, 1956, and played a total of 924 performances. Directed by Jerome Robbins and choreographed by Robbins and Bob Fosse, it won Tony awards for its stars Judy Holliday and Sydney Chaplin. Bells Are Ringing will run November 18-21, 2010.
Lost in the Stars, based on Alan Paton's novel Cry, the Beloved Country, with music by Kurt Weill and book and lyrics by Maxwell Anderson. This story of life in South Africa under apartheid stirred generations to action and was the basis for a beautiful, brooding, dramatic musical that produced not only the immortal title song, but an entire score that pulses with the life of a people. It opened at the Music Box Theater on October 30, 1949, and played 273 performances. Lost in the Stars will run February 3-6, 2011.
Where's Charley?, Frank Loesser's first Broadway score, immediately demonstrated the master's easy command of wit and romance, sophistication and high jinks. George Abbott's adaptation of BranDon Thomas' classic college farce Charley's Aunt delivered "Once in Love With Amy," "My Darling, My Darling" and "The New Ashmolean Marching Society" to the hit parade, and launched Loesser into the songwriting stratosphere. The musical opened at the St. James Theater on October 11, 1948, and played 792 performances. It was directed by George Abbott, choreographed by George Balanchine and starred Ray Bolger, who won a Tony Award for his performance. Where's Charley? will run March 17-20, 2011.
The 2010-11 Encores! season is made possible, in part, by the Stephanie and Fred Shuman Fund for Encores!
City Center gratefully acknowledges lead support from American Express, Stacey and Eric Mindich and the Newman's Own Foundation.
Bells Are Ringing has been generously supported by The Joseph S. and Diane H. Steinberg Charitable Trust and Roz and Jerry Meyer.
Kathleen Marshall (Director and Choreographer, Bells are Ringing)) returns to Encores!, where she has directed and choreographed Applause, Carnival, Hair and Babes In Arms, among others, and served as artistic director for four seasons. Her Broadway credits include The Pajama Game; Wonderful Town; Grease; Boeing, Boeing; Little Shop of Horrors; Follies; Seussical; Kiss Me, Kate; Ring Round the Moon; 1776 and Swinging on a Star. For ABC/Disney, she directed and choreographed "Once Upon a Mattress" and choreographed "The Music Man" (Emmy nomination). She has received two Tony awards, two Drama Desk awards and two Outer Critics Circle awards.
Gary Griffin (Director, Lost In The Stars) directed the Encores! productions of The New Moon, Pardon My English, A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, The Apple Tree and Music In The Air. He directed The Color Purple and The Apple Tree on Broadway, Pacific Overtures in London (Olivier Award, Outstanding Musical Production, Olivier Nomination, Best Director), and West Side Story and Evita at Stratford Festival of Canada. Mr. Griffin is associate artistic director of Chicago Shakespeare Theater, where he directed Private Lives, Amadeus and A Little Night Music. Regionally, he has directed at The ALLIANCE THEATRE, The Old Globe, McCarter Theatre, Signature Theatre and Kansas City Repertory Theatre.