THE FIRST WIVES CLUB is getting a new wife. For personal reasons, Adriane Lenox will not be a part of the musical production. Tony Award nominee Sheryl Lee Ralph has stepped in to the role of "Elyse".
Sheryl Lee Ralph is an acclaimed veteran of film, television and the Broadway stage. Her award winning body of work includes creating and originating the role of Deena Jones on Broadway in the landmark musical Dreamgirls, which earned her both a Tony and Drama Desk Award Nomination for Best Actress. After Dreamgirls, Ms. Ralph turned her attention to music, television and film. She scored a top-ten selling dance hit in the mid-eighties with the infectious anthem In the Evening andagain in the nineties with her remake of Here comes the Rain Again.
On television, Sheryl Lee has starred in It's a Living, her own series New Attitude, the George Foreman series George and in the hit comedy Designing Women. She was also voted one of TV's Favorite Moms for her portrayal of step mom Dee on the number-one rated television series Moesha. She broke new ground In the SHOWTIME series, Barbershop, as the popular, post-operative transsexual, Claire. Recently, Sheryl brought a new face to the sufferings of war in the NBC hit series ER.
Her extensive film credits include Sister Act II with Whoopi Goldberg, The Flintstones with Rosie O'Donnell, The Mighty Quinn with Denzel Washington, Mistress with Robert De Niro, and Eddie Murphy's Distinguished Gentleman. Sheryl Lee's performance with Danny Glover in To Sleep with Anger won her the Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actress.
For more information on Sheryl Lee Ralph, visit her official website.
Previews for the world premiere of The First Wives Club - A New Musical are now set to begin July 17, 2009. The schedule was changed to accommodate a revised rehearsal/technical schedule.
Based on the best-selling novel and film of the same name, this Broadway-bound musical features a book by Tony Award-winner Rupert Holmes (Curtains!, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Say Goodnight Gracie) and a score by Motown hit-makers and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland, the threesome who created hits for Martha and The Vandellas, The Miracles, Marvin Gaye, The Four Tops and The Supremes. The production will be directed by award-winning opera and theatre director Francesca Zambello (The Little Mermaid, Little House on the Prairie - The Musical, Rebecca, Porgy and Bess and the Wagner Ring Cycle at the San Francisco Opera where she is the Artistic Advisor). The production will run in the Old Globe Theatre July 17 - August 23, 2009, with a press opening on Friday, July 31 at 8:00pm. Following its run at The Old Globe, The First Wives Club will be produced on Broadway by Paul Lambert and Jonas Neilson, with a theatre and dates to be announced.
Tickets are available immediately through subscription purchase. Individual tickets for The First Wives Club - A New Musical go on sale Sunday, June 7 at 10am and are available by calling (619) 23-GLOBE, on the Globe website at www.TheOldGlobe.org, or by visiting The Globe box office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park. Ticket prices range from $55 to $92.
The cast features Broadway veterans Adriane Lenox (Doubt; Kiss Me, Kate) as "Elyse," Barbara Walsh (Company, Hairspray) as "Brenda," Karen Ziemba (Contact, Curtains!) as "Annie," John Dossett (Gypsy) as "Aaron," Kevyn Morrow (Dreamgirls) as "Bill," Brad Oscar (The Producers) as "Morty," Sara Chase as "Trophy Wife," Sam Harris (The Life) as "Duane," Ari Lerner and Austyn Myers alternating as "Jason," with Michelle Aravena, Mark Campbell, Thursday Farrar, Jenifer Foote, Bob Gaynor, Matthew Labanca, Victoria Matlock, Hayley Podschun, Martin Samuel and Richard Waits as The Ensemble.
The design team includes Scenic Designer Peter J. Davison (revival of Blithe Spirit in 2009, Is He Dead?, Deuce and Medea, for which he was nominated for a 1994 Tony Award), Costume Designer Paul Tazewell (2009 revival of Guys and Dolls, Tony Award-nominee in 2008 for In The Heights, in 2006 for The Color Purple and in 1996 for Bring in ‘Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk), Lighting Designer Mark McCullough (The American Plan, 2000 revival of Jesus Christ Superstar), Sound Designer Jon Weston (13; 2006 revival of Les Miserables; The Color Purple; Caroline, or Change; Thoroughly Modern Millie), Choreographer Lisa Stevens, Music Supervisor Ron Melrose, Conductor John Gentry Tennyson and Orchestrator Harold Wheeler.