A gleefully vulgar play, The Producers is replete with "slapstick, corny jokes, Borscht Belt shtick, ethnic jokes, unsubtle dirty jokes, hummable melodies, opulent and entirely unmotivated musical numbers and vigorous tap dancing," The Play centers around Max Bialystock, a scheming, down-on-his luck theatrical producer, and Leo Bloom, his mousy, stage struck, accountant. It all starts when Leo points out that under the right circumstances, a producer could actually make more money with a flop than he can with a hit. "No profits" = "no need to pay off the backers". The idea is hatched to find the worst play ever written, hire the worst director and the worst actors in New York, raise two million dollars from little old ladies willing to invest in a play in return for a little affection, and when the play closes on opening night, run off to Rio with the money. The chosen script, guaranteed to close in one night is "Springtime for Hitler, A Gay Romp with Adolf and Eva at Berchtesgaden," written by a nutty neo-Nazi named Franz Liebkind. Roger De Bris, the worst director in New York and a flamboyant homosexual to boot, agrees to do it, but only if the ending is changed so the Germans end up winning World War II! The scheme seems surefire, but anything can happen when the lights go up on Broadway!
Our production Stars Bob Amaral as Max Bialystock and Joel Newsome as Leo Bloom, Karen McNay as the beautiful Ulla. Craig Fols as Roger DeBris, John West as Carmen Ghia, Eric Anderson as the Nazi, Franz Liebkind, The rest of the cast includes Delaine Andrzejewski, Jesse Coleman, Amy Griffin, Karen Hyland, John Ryan Jacobs, Sean McNight, Rob Oullette, Lindsay Packard, Ron Remke, Lara Seibert, Melissa Sybil, Anthony Valbiro, Correy West, Tracy J. Wholf & Jesse Wildman.
The Choreographer will be Matthew Vargo assisted by Sean McKnight, Peter Barbieri designed sets, Andrew Gmoser designed Lights, Jon Hatton is the sound designer, Matthew Hemesath is the Costume Designer and Gerard Kelly designed Wigs/hair. Victor Lukas will be the Production Stage Manager assisted by Ruth Zang.
The Producers is adapted from Mel Brooks' wacky 1968 film of the same name, which starred Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder. The film was so brazen in its satire that the major studios wouldn't touch it. Brooks finally found an independent distributor, which released it like an art film. The Producers went on to receive an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay and became a smash underground hit For The Musical, Brooks wrote music and lyrics for 17 new songs to go along with "Springtime for "Hitler and "Prisoner of Love" from his film score. Brooks asked his old friend, Glen Kelly to sign on as the musical arranger, and playwright, Thomas Meehan, who wrote the book for the musical, Annie, to join him in writing the book for the stage. Tony award winner, Susan Stroman, who worked on hits like Contact, Showboat, The Music Man, Crazy For You, and Gypsy (here at WBT!), joined the creative team as director and choreographer.
The musical opened at the St. James Theatre on April 19, 2001 and ran for 2,502 performances, closing on April 22, 2007. The show originally starred Nathan Lane as Max Bialystock and Matthew Broderick as Leo Bloom. It won 12 Tony Awards, breaking the record held for 37 years by Hello, Dolly! which had won 10. The Producers also broke the record for the largest single day box-office gross in theatre history, taking in more than $3.5 million. In 2005, the musical was adapted into a musical film, becoming a movie based on a musical based on a movie about a musical. It was directed by Stroman starring Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick reprising their stage roles,
BOB AMARAL (Max Bialystock) is happy to be returning to WBT. Broadway: Lion King, Guys & Dolls, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. National Tours: The Producers, Lion King, Annie Get Your Gun, and Wizard of Oz.Regional Theatre: Happy Days: A New Musical, Noises Off, Anything Goes, Triumph of Love, The Robber Bridegroom, Mike, Joseph.Dreamcoat, Good News, The Music Man, Guys & Dolls, and was Kromov in the S.F. Opera production of The Merry Widow.Television: Mad About You, N.Y.P.D. Blue, Babylon 5, Honey I Shrunk the Kids, Any Day Now, Son of the Beach, My Two Dads, Major Dad, Empty Nest, Love & War, The Second Half, Brothers Keeper, and was Eddie Hayes in Rob Reiner's Morton & Hayes.
JOEL NEWSOME(Leo Bloom) is thrilled to be a part of The Producers once again having performed the show on Broadway and on the National Tour. While on tour, Joel had the honor of playing Leo Bloom as well as Carmen Ghia. Other Broadway credits include the Tony winning revival of 42nd Street where he covered and performed the roles of Bert Barry and Andy Lee. Westchester audiences may remember Joel as Cosmo Brown in Singin' in the Rain. Other
Credits include the National tour of Steel Pier, and the Off-Broadway production of Kuni-Leml. Regionally, he has appeared at the Arizona Theatre Co, Goodspeed Opera, Paper Mill Playhouse, VA Musical Theatre, TUTS, and North Carolina Theatre. He is a Graduate of Cincinnati's Conservatory of Music.
David Edwards(Director) Appeared as both Max Bialystock and Roger DeBris in the First National Tour of THE PRODUCERS directed by Susan Stroman. He has also directed the musical regionally, most recently at Surflight Theatre in Beach Haven, New Jersey. As an actor, his Broadway credits include BY JEEVES and THE ROTHSCHILDS. He was the final "El Gallo" in the original record-breaking run of THE FANTASTICKS and recently starred in the critically acclaimed revival of ROOM SERVICE at the Soho Playhouse. Other New York acting credits include THE DISPUTATION, DR. SEX, THE ROAR OF THE GREASEPAINT..., THAT'S LIFE, JOLSON & CO., WHAT'S A NICE COUNTRY LIKE YOU DOING IN A STATE LIKE THIS?, ZION, COMPANY, and BITTERSUITE. Westchester Broadway Theatre audiences will remember him as Don Quixote in MAN OF LA MANCHA, Albin in LA CAGE AUX FOLLES, Scrooge in two different versions of A Christmas Carol, and most recently, in PHANTOM. Favorite regional roles include Fredrick in A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, John Adams in 1776, King Arthur in CAMELOT and Jeff Moss in BELLS ARE RINGING, as well as leads in such plays as THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP, DRIVING MISS DAISY, and DIAL 'M' FOR MURDER. He won the Star Ledger Award for Best Musical Actor for his work in LITTLE ME with the American Stage Company, and he has acted at major regional theatres across the country, including The Ordway, Eugene O'Neill Center, Syracuse Stage, Portland Stage Company, GeVa, and The Old Globe. He has also appeared in films and television, and as a guest artist in concerts and opera houses. He directed the world premiere of the new musical THE MAGICIAN OF LUBLIN and the New York production of TD/KARMA IS A BOOMERANG. In addition to THE PRODUCERS, he has directed regional productions of SOUTH PACIFIC, RUMORS, THE FANTASTICKS, and SHOWBOAT.