Original Star Matt McGrath to Return for THE LEGEND OF GEORGIA McBRIDE at Geffen Playhouse; Cast Announced!

Original Star Matt McGrath to Return for THE LEGEND OF GEORGIA McBRIDE at Geffen Playhouse; Cast Announced!

The Geffen Playhouse today announced that the cast for its West Coast Premiere production of Matthew Lopez's The Legend of Georgia McBride will feature Andrew Burnap as Casey, Matt McGrath as Miss Tracy Mills, Nija Okoro as Jo, Larry Powell as Rexy / Jason and Nick Searcy as Eddie.

Original New York cast member McGrath will reunite at the Geffen with director Mike Donahue and choreographer Paul McGill, who led the celebrated creative team for the MCC Theater 2015 production at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in New York.

Previews begin Tuesday, April 4 in the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse, with opening night set for Wednesday, April 12. The production closes Sunday, May 14.

The Legend of Georgia McBride tells the story of Casey, who after years of struggling at a small-time club in the Florida Panhandle, realizes it's now or never for his career as an Elvis impersonator. Enter Miss Tracy Mills, a self-proclaimed grand dame of drag who guarantees Casey's life is about to get "all shook up." Matthew Lopez's hip-shakin', heartwarming tale explores what happens when one man trades in his blue suede shoes for platform pumps and discovers he ain't nothing but a drag queen.

The Legend of Georgia McBride had its world premiere at the Denver Center Theatre before premiering in New York on September 9, 2015 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre. Directed by Donahue and choreographed by McGill, the play was named a Critics' Pick.

IF YOU GO:

THE LEGEND OF GEORGIA McBRIDE
Written by Matthew Lopez
Directed by Mike Donahue
Choreography by Paul McGill

Previews: Tuesday, April 4 - Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Opening Night: Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Closing Night: Sunday, May 14, 2017
Schedule: Monday No performance; Tuesday - Friday 8:00 p.m.; Saturday 3:00 and 8:00 p.m.; and Sunday 2:00 and 7:00 p.m.

CAST
Andrew Burnap as Casey
Matt McGrath as Miss Tracy Mills
Nija Okoro as Jo
Larry Powell as Rexy / Jason
Nick Searcy as Eddie

PRODUCTION TEAM
Scenic Designer Donyale Werle
Costume Designer E.B. Brooks
Lighting Designer Josh Epstein
Sound Designer Jill BC Du Boff
Production Stage Manager Jill Gold
Assistant Stage Manager Julie Renfro
Casting Director Phyllis Schuringa, CSA

Tickets currently priced at $43.00 - $90.00. College Student tickets priced at $25. Available in person at the Geffen Playhouse box office, by phone at 310.208.5454 or online at www.geffenplayhouse.org. Fees may apply.

SIGNATURE SERIES:

In addition to the opening night, the run of The Legend of Georgia McBride will feature the Geffen's Signature Series events. These include Talk Back Tuesdays, Girls Night Out, Lounge Fridays and Wine Down Sundays. Thanks to the support of Geffen Playhouse partners and sponsors, all elements of Signature Series evenings are complimentary as part of the ticket price. Signature Series events include:

TALK BACK TUESDAYS

Talk Back Tuesdays give theater lovers a chance for a deeper conversation to discuss plot, character themes or any other questions directly with the artists with a post-show Q&A from the stage. Dates: April 18, April 25, May 2 and May 9, 2017

GIRLS NIGHT OUT

It's a globally accepted piece of pop-culture that girls just wanna have fun, and this Signature Series was designed with that in mind; although gentlemen are welcome to join. These unique events only happen once during each Gil Cates Theater production, and every Girls Night Out features partnerships with different lifestyle experts, brands or products that keep patrons on the cusp of what's hot in LA. Each night features different partners ranging from private shopping events to showcasing the latest beauty trends, but every Girls Night Out promises a festive evening of theater followed by a unique party complete with complimentary signature drinks, delectable buffets, the popular GNO photo booth, plus a Pixi Beauty take-away gift. Date: April 20, 2017

LOUNGE FRIDAYS

Happy hour Lounge Fridays turn the Geffen Playhouse into a haven to help fast-paced Angelenos ease into their weekend and unwind. Complimentary sparkling joins other enticing beverages starting at 7:00 p.m. with eclectic jams from DJ Mike on the courtyard patio. Sponsored by LAArtsOnline.com. Dates: April 21, April 28, May 5 and May 12, 2017

WINE DOWN SUNDAYS

Wine Down Sundays provides the perfect pairing - pre-performance wine sampling followed by a 7:00 p.m. curtain time to close out the week. These evenings feature different vintages for each production, so patrons who come regularly will discover a new wine brand before their theatrical experience. Dates: April 16, April 23, April 30, May 7 and May 14, 2017

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Matthew Lopez (Playwright)

Matthew Lopez is the author of The Whipping Man, one of the most celebrated and widely-produced new American plays of the last decade. The Manhattan Theatre Club production received Obie, Lortel and Outer Critics Circle awards including the John Gassner New Play Award. It has since been produced at more than 100 U.S. theaters as well as internationally. The Legend of Georgia McBride premiered at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts and ran off-Broadway at MCC Theater in a production that received multiple Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle nominations, including Best Play. Other plays include Somewhere (Old Globe, world premiere), Reverberation (Hartford Stage Company, world premiere), The Sentinels (London's Headlong Theatre Company) and Zoey's Perfect Wedding. Matthew holds commissions from Roundabout Theatre Company, Manhattan Theatre Club, South Coast Repertory, Williamstown Theatre Festival and Harford Stage Company, where he recently served as their AETNA New Voices Fellow. For the past two seasons, he has been the Inaugural Playwriting Fellow at the Denver Center Theatre Company. Matthew was a writer on the HBO series The Newsroom and has recently adapted Javier Marias' Your Face Tomorrow trilogy for the screen as well as the biopic Dr. Q for Disney.

Mike Donahue (Director)

Mike Donahue is a New York-based director. Credits include the world premieres of Matthew Lopez's The Legend of Georgia McBride (MCC Theater and Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Joe A. Callaway Award, Outer Critics Circle Nomination); Jordan Seavey's Homos, Or Everyone In America (LAByrinth Theater Company); Jen Silverman's Phoebe in Winter (Clubbed Thumb) and The Hunters (Cherry Lane Theatre's Mentor Project); and Ethan Lipton's Red-Handed Otter (Playwrights Realm). Regionally: world premieres of Jen Silverman's Collective Rage (Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company) and The Roommate (Humana Festival of New Plays); world premieres of Rachel Bonds' The Wolfe Twins (Studio Theatre D.C.) and Swimmers (Marin Theatre Company); world premiere of Lauren Feldman's Grace, or The Art of Climbing (Denver Center for the Performing Arts); Moscow, Cheryomushki (Chicago Opera Theatre); Antony & Cleopatra (Shakespeare Festival St. Louis); and Assassins, Henry IV & V (co-director) and A Number (PlayMakers Repertory Company). Readings/workshops: Roundabout Underground, New York Theatre Workshop, Soho Rep (Writer/Director Lab), Williamstown Theatre Festival, McCarter Theatre Center, South Coast Repertory, Berkley Rep, O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, The Lark, and Ars Nova. Mike is recipient of a Fulbright to Berlin, the Drama League Fall Fellowship, the Boris Sagal Fellowship at Williamstown Theatre Festival, and was the artistic director of the Yale Summer Cabaret for two seasons. He is a graduate of Harvard University and the Yale School of Drama. Upcoming: Jen Silverman's The Moors (Playwrights Realm).

Paul McGill (Choreography)

Paul McGill is elated to be working at the Geffen Playhouse on this production. Off-Broadway: The Legend of Georgia McBride (Astaire Award, Lortel nomination), Steve (directed by Cynthia Nixon), School for Scandal. Broadway/National Tour: Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Associate Choreographer), Scandalous! (Associate Choreographer). Circus: Filament (Short Round Productions), Grounded Aerial. Film: Diamond Soles, Hakuna Truvada (featuring Todrick Hall), ALT Coffee Commercial. Paul Trained Laverne Cox for her starring role in FOX's The Rocky Horror Picture Show. He is the co-founder and director of the online educational series Broadway Masters (BroadwayMasters.org). As a Broadway performer, he appeared in La Cage aux Folles (2004), A Chorus Line (as Mark), Memphis, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark and Bullets Over Broadway. MGM's Fame, Smash (NBC), and the Oscar-winning film Man on Wire. This summer, Paul will direct Robin Hood at Serenbe Playhouse in Atlanta.

Andrew Burnap (Casey)

New York Theater includes This Day Forward (Donald/Leo) at the Vineyard Theatre, and Troilus & Cressida (Troilus) and King Lear (ensemble) at The Public Theater/Delacourte. Regional theater includes Caucasian Chalk Circle at Yale Repertory Theatre; Once Five Years Pass and Dental Society Midwinter Meeting at Williamstown Theatre Festival; Two Gentlemen of Verona, Kiss Me Kate, Coriolanus and All's Well That Ends Well at Commonwealth Shakespeare Company. Andrew holds a B.F.A. from the University of Rhode Island. Yale School of Drama 2016.

Matt McGrath (Miss Tracy Mills)

Matt McGrath starred as Wilhelm in The Black Rider in Los Angeles, San Francisco, London and Sydney. Broadway credits include Cabaret (Emcee) and A Streetcar Named Desire. Off Broadway credits include The Legend of Georgia McBride (MCC Theater, Denver Center for the Performing Arts); Steve (The New Group); Verite by Nick Jones at LCT3, Hedwig and the Angry Inch and A Fair Country (Lincoln Center Theater); Collection/A Kind of Alaska by Harold Pinter, Minutes from the Blue Route and The Dadshuttle (Atlantic Theater Company); Fat Men in Skirts, The Old Boy, Life During Wartime, Amulets Against the Dragon Forces, Dalton's Back (Drama Desk nomination). Regional appearances include Black Stache in Peter and the Starcatcher, Putting it Together, Ridiculous Fraud, Raised in Captivity (South Coast Repertory); His Girl Friday (La Jolla Playhouse); The Rocky Horror Show (The Old Globe); Romance, Japes and Bell, Book and Candle (Bay Street Theatre); Caroline in Jersey and Loot (Williamstown Theatre Festival); Distant Fires (LA Weekly Award); and Snakebit. Films include Full Grown Men, Boys Don't Cry, The Notorious Bettie Page, The Anniversary Party, The Broken Hearts Club, The Impostors; television includes Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Little Britain U.S.A., Cruel Doubt, Modern Family.

Nija Okoro (Jo)

Nija Okoro is thrilled to be making her Geffen Playhouse debut! Regional: The Mountaintop (Cape May Stage), Bossa Nova (Sundance Theatre Lab), For Colored Girls..., Gallathea, A Chaste Maid in Cheapside (Aaron Davis Theatre), Blueprints to Freedom (La Jolla Playhouse), Part of Me and Echo in Silence (McCarter Theatre Center). Los Angeles: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (Mark Taper Forum), Joe Tuner's Come and Gone (Mark Taper Forum). TV: StartUp, Southland, Monday Mornings, Hail Mary, Medium, ER. Upcoming Film: A Doll's House and Fachada. Graduate of The Juilliard School (Group 37) and member of the Marjorie Ballentine Studio.

Larry Powell (Rexy / Jason)

Larry Powell was last seen as Rodney in the world premiere of Theresa Rebeck's new play Seared at San Francisco Playhouse. Before that he played Homer in the West Coast Premiere of Suzan-Lori Parks' Father Comes Home From The Wars. He also originated the role of Associate Pastor Joshua in Lucas Hnath's The Christians (Humana Festival of New American Plays; Playwrights Horizons; Mark Taper Forum). Other credits: Martin Luther King, Jr. in The Mountaintop (L.A. Theatre Works); While I Yet Live (Primary Stages); The Mountaintop, The Brothers Size (Actors Theatre of Louisville); Goddess (O'Neill National Music Theater Conference); The Brothers Size (Everyman Theatre); Marcus; Or The Secret of Sweet (City Theatre); Broke-ology (Lincoln Center Theater, Kansas City Repertory Theatre); four seasons at the Obie Award-winning Fire This Time Festival; Bronzeville, (Robey Theatre Company, NAACP Award nomination). Upcoming films: The Browsing Effect. Larry is also a published playwright. Education: Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama.

Nick Searcy (Eddie)

Nick Searcy recently wrapped a role in Guillermo Del Toro's film The Shape of Water. Film: Fried Green Tomatoes, The Fugitive, Cast Away, Moneyball, The Last Song, Tigerland, Head of State, Runaway Jury, The Ugly Truth, Nell, Days of Thunder. Television (as a series regular): Justified (FX), Easy Money (CW), Rodney (ABC), American Gothic (CBS), 7 Days (UPN), From The Earth to The Moon (HBO). He was recently seen in the J.J. Abrams mini-series for Hulu 11/22/63, and returned to the stage in 2016 as Raymond Chandler in Laguna Playhouse's Billy & Ray. He is represented by APA, Haven Entertainment and Morris Yorn Barnes Levine Entertainment Law Firm.

Geffen Playhouse has been a hub of the Los Angeles theater scene since opening its doors in 1995. Noted for its intimacy and celebrated for its world-renowned mix of classic and contemporary plays, provocative new works and second productions, the not-for-profit organization continues to present a body of work that has garnered national recognition. Named in honor of entertainment mogul and philanthropist David Geffen, who made the initial donation to the theater, the company was founded by Gilbert Cates, and is currently helmed by Artistic Director Randall Arney, Executive Director Gil Cates, Jr., and Co-Chairs of the Board Martha Henderson and Pamela Robinson. Proudly associated with UCLA, the Geffen welcomes an audience of more than 130,000 each year, and maintains extensive education and community engagement programs, designed to involve underserved young people and the community at large in the arts. www.geffenplayhouse.org.


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