Kansas City Repertory Theatre's artistic director Eric Rosen has cast Broadway musical veteran Wallace Smith as the Leading Player in the Rep's production of Pippin. Rosen will direct the musical, which runs September 14-October 7. Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark's Chase Brock will choreograph and Curtis Moore is musical director.
Smith made his Broadway debut in The Lion King and has also been seen on the Broadway stage in Hair, Ragtime, American Idiot and the recent revival of Godspell, another Stephen Schwartz musical from the Pippin era. His other credits include the first and second national tours and the Vegas production of The Lion King, Whoopie Goldberg's White Noise, Miss Saigon and the Los Angeles company of Bare.
Joining Smith in Pippin are:
Claybourne Elder (Pippin): Cabaret, Into the Woods-Kansas City Rep; Bonnie and Clyde-Broadway; Road Show-Off Broadway; One Arm, drama desk nomination Outstanding Actor in a Play-Tectonic Theater Project and The New Group; Pump Up the Volume-Joes' Pub.
John Hickok (Charles): Room Service-Kansas City Rep; The Invisible Hand-Repertory Theatre of St. Louis; Man and Boy with Frank Langella-Broadway; Sessions and Meet Me in St. Louis, revival-Off Broadway; If It Only Even Runs A Minute 10-Le Poisson Rouge, New York.
Mary Testa (Berthe): Kansas City Rep debut; Xanadu, Queen of the Mist, On the Town (Tony nomination), 42nd Street, revival (Tony nomination)-Broadway; 2011-12 Drama Desk Award in recognition of excellence and significant contributions to theatre.
Zach Villa (Lewis/Others): Kansas City Rep debut; War Horse, Broadway debut-Lincoln Center; Twelfth Night-Public Theatre/Shakespeare in the Park; Leonard Bernstein Tribute-Carnegie Hall Opening Night Gala.
Katie Gilchrist (Catherine, Ensemble): Kansas City Rep debut; Oleanna, Bucket of Blood-The Living Room; Everyday Rapture, Lobby Hero-Unicorn Theatre; The Death of Cupid-Kansas City Fringe Festival, all in Kansas City; Trash-New York Fringe Festival.
Katie Kalahurka (Fastrada, Ensemble): Into the Woods, world premiere of A Christmas Story, The Musical!, A Flea in Her Ear-Kansas City Rep; A Man of No Importance, Death of a Salesman-Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, all in Kansas City.
Jennie Greenberry (Female Ensemble): Little Shop of Horrors, A Christmas Carol, world premiere of A Christmas Story, The Musical!-Kansas City Rep; U Bug Me, A Typical Boy, Lucky Duck, including its New York run at the New Victory Theatre.
Gil Perez-Abraham, Jr. (Male Ensemble): Kansas City Rep debut; A Steady Rain-Brave New Works where he is co-artistic director; Noah's Art-Theatre for Young Audiences at Kansas University.
The Pippin creative team includes:
Choreographer Chase Brock: Kansas City Rep debut; Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark-Broadway; Roméo et Juliette, directed by Bartlett Sher-Salzburg Festival; A Little Night Music, revival-CenterStage; the video game Dance on Broadway for Nintendo Wii and PlayStation's Move.
Music Director and Orchestrator Curtis Moore: Into the Woods, directed by Moisés Kaufman; Rosen and Matt Sax's 2010 world premiere rock musical Venice, which TIME magazine called "The Year's Best Musical," both at Kansas City Rep; Richard III starring Kevin Spacey, directed by Sam Mendes and now on international tour.