Many of Broadway's best and brightest talents performed in Westport Country Playhouse's one-night-only fundraising gala, "Playing Our Songs: Celebrating 80 Years of Musical Theater," a fully orchestrated and choreographed retrospective of musicals that have been produced at The Playhouse since its founding in 1931, last night, September 19.
The cast, in alphabetical order, included Tony Award nominee Tituss Burgess ("Jersey Boys," "The Little Mermaid," "Guys and Dolls"); Tony Award nominee Melissa Errico ("My Fair Lady," "Anna Karenina," "High Society"); Tony Award winner Shuler Hensley ("Oklahoma!," "Young Frankenstein"); Dirk Lumbard ("Chitty Chitty Bang Bang," "Imaginary Friends," "The Music Man"); Neil McCaffrey ("Mary Poppins," "Bye Bye Birdie," "Billy Elliot"); Jessica Patty ("The Addams Family"); Tony Award nominee Andrew Rannells ("The Book of Mormon," "Jersey Boys," "Hairspray"); Max Von Essen ("Les Misérables," "Jesus Christ Superstar"); and Tony Award winner Karen Ziemba ("Contact," "Curtains," "Chicago").
The evening included the presentation of Westport Country Playhouse's Distinguished Dedication and Service to the American Musical Theater Award to musical theater legend Bernadette Peters.
Joining The Playhouse celebration, which also marks the legendary venue's 80th birthday, was a star-studded group of alumni artists whose work has graced the Westport stage during their careers- Lucie Arnaz, Joel Grey, Sheldon Harnick, Tom Jones, Jo Sullivan Loesser, Laurence Luckinbill, James Naughton, Christopher Plummer, Jane Powell, Stephen Schwartz and Joanne Woodward.
Photo Credit: Kathleen O'Rourke