Capathia Jenkins, Leslie Kritzer, Faith Prince and Clarke Thorell Tribute Fanny Brice at 92Y, Now thru 5/5
Funny girl, singular talent, American icon. Fanny Brice hit stardom in the 1920s and, almost a century later, still inspires the public imagination. This weekend, May 3, 4, and 5, Lyrics & Lyricists pays tribute to Fanny with Ziegfeld Girl: The Many Faces of Fanny Brice, a night of songs she put on the Broadway map, led by artistic director Ted Sperling, music director of the smash 2008 Broadway revival of South Pacific. Vocalists Capathia Jenkins, Leslie Kritzer, Faith Prince and Clarke Thorell sing classics like "Second Hand Rose" and "My Man"-as well as songs she inspired in Funny Girl.
"Fanny Brice embodies so much that is modern, yet she also pioneered so much we take for granted today," notes Ted Sperling. "As a woman in show business she was a self-motivated survivor who took charge of her finances and career. But she was also there for the transition from burlesque to vaudeville and the Broadway theater - popularizing dialect and ethnic humor for the mass audience - and then with her beloved 'Baby Snooks' character, presided over the forefront of radio." Sperling's Ziegfeld Girl illuminates the real Fanny Brice, as well as the fictional character beloved by fans of Funny Girl, Funny Lady and Glee.
About the Artistic Director and Cast
Conductor/orchestrator/arranger/singer/pianist and the show's artistic director, Ted Sperling is a Tony and Drama Desk Award-winner for The Light in the Piazza orchestrations. His Broadway credits also include South Pacific, Guys and Dolls, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and The Full Monty and he has worked with Audra McDonald, Kelli O'Hara, Nathan Gunn and Victoria Clark, among others. Sperling has hosted numerous L&L shows over the last few years, most recently 2012's Songs of America.
Capathia Jenkins - Jenkins has appeared on Broadway in Newsies, Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me, Caroline, or Change, The Look of Love and The Civil War. She garnered a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Solo Performance for (mis)Understanding Mammy: The Hattie McDaniel Story. Her last L&L appearance was at 2012's salute to Hoagy Carmichael.
Leslie Kritzer - Kritzer got the theater world's attention with her acclaimed performance as Fanny Brice in Papermill Playhouse's revival of Funny Girl. She has appeared on Broadway in Hairspray, Legally Blonde, Elf, the musical revue Sondheim on Sondheim, and in a Drama Desk Award-nominated role in A Catered Affair. Off-Broadway credits include The Great American Trailer Park Musical, Bat Boy and Godspell. Kritzer received a 2007 Special Achievement MAC Award for her show Leslie Kritzer is Patti LuPone at Les Mouches.
Faith Prince - Prince swept the Tony and Drama Desk Awards for her star-making performance as Miss Adelaide in Broadway's 1992 revival of Guys and Dolls. She garnered both Tony and Drama Desk nominations for her roles in A Catered Affair, Bells Are Ringing and Jerome Robbins' Broadway and appeared as Miss Hannigan in the recent revival of Annie.
Clarke Thorell - Thorell originated the role of Corny Collins in Hairspray and Jim Farrell in Titanic, and made his Broadway debut in The Who's Tommy. He recently starred opposite Megan Hilty in Encores! production of Gentleman Prefer Blondes. Clarke is a returning L&L favorite, having appeared recently in 2010's Hoagy Carmichael tribute In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening and 2012's Songs of America.
ABOUT LYRICS & LYRICISTS: Long one of 92Y's most popular programs, the American Songbook series Lyrics & Lyricists was launched in 1970 when longtime Broadway conductor Maurice Levine and lyricist E.Y. "Yip" Harburg (The Wizard of Oz) took to the stage to talk about the then-unusual topic of songwriting. Over the years the series has featured great Broadway and Hollywood lyricists including Betty Comden and Adolph Green, Johnny Mercer, Stephen Sondheim, Dorothy Fields and Alan Jay Lerner. Since 2004, L&L has featured original programs created by accomplished champions of the repertoire, including John Pizzarelli, Rob Fisher, Sheldon Harnick, Robert Kimball, Kathleen Marshall, Rex Reed, Billy Stritch, Lucie Arnaz, Ted Sperling and Mark Lamos. Each show is designed to celebrate the American Songbook with narrated concert revues, with a particular focus on lyrics. For more information, visit www.92Y.org/Lyrics.
About 92nd Street Y: 92Y is a world-class nonprofit community and cultural center that connects people at every stage of life to the worlds of education, the arts, health and wellness, and Jewish life. Through the breadth and depth of 92Y's extraordinary programs, 92Y enriches lives, creates community and elevates humanity. More than 300,000 people visit 92Y in New York City annually and many more connect through digital and social media, live webcasts of events, and an extensive archive of stage programs and original content produced for the web, all available on 92YOnDemand.org. A proudly Jewish organization since its founding in 1874, 92Y embraces its heritage and enthusiastically welcomes people of all backgrounds and perspectives. For more information, visit www.92Y.org.
Pictured: Faith Prince. Photo by Pablo Pimienta.