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Chita Rivera Leads THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD for Roundabout in 2012-2013; PICNIC & New Premiere Announced!

Roundabout Theatre Company has announced three productions as part of the 2012-2013 theatrical season.  In the fall of 2012, Roundabout will present The Mystery of Edwin Drood, starring Chita Rivera, featuring book, music and lyrics by Rupert Holmes, musical direction by Paul Gemignani and direction by Scott Ellis. Winter 2013 will bring Picnic by William Inge, directed by Sam Gold. The third production announced is The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin by Steven Levenson, directed by Scott Ellis.

Says Todd Haimes: "I’m so pleased to be able to announce three productions that represent exactly the kind of balance and variety that I’ve been seeking for the season ahead. With The Mystery of Edwin Drood, we have our first revival of a musical since opening Anything Goes. I’ve always found it fascinating that Rupert Holmes managed to turn an unfinished Dickens novel into a musical, let alone a highly entertaining one with a great score. It’s an intriguing idea that led to a wonderfully offbeat show that gets the whole audience involved. And to be welcoming back our dear friend Chita Rivera is just the icing on the cake for this delightfully odd musical. Doing a new production of Picnic, on the other hand, goes back to the more classic revival roots we have at Roundabout. It’s a play that I absolutely adore, and I’m thrilled to have Associate Artist Sam Gold back to bring his vision for Inge’s masterpiece to the stage. And a new play for us this season, The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin, will, like The Mystery of Edwin Drood, be directed by our Adams Associate Artistic Director Scott Ellis. This is a smart and timely new American drama, written by Steven Levenson, who received his New York debut in the Roundabout Underground only a few years ago. Roundabout commissioned this play from Steven, and I am so happy that this production will continue our commitment to the ongoing careers of emerging playwrights as they ‘graduate’ from the Black Box to the Laura Pels Theatre. All in all, this is a mix of productions that I find truly exciting, and I think the audience will agree."

Season details are as follows:

Chita Rivera Will Star in THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD

Book, Music & Lyrics by Rupert Holmes Musical Direction by Paul Gemignani Directed by Scott Ellis

(Performances begin Fall 2012 at Studio 54 on Broadway, 254 West 54th Street.)

Chita Rivera returns to Broadway as “Princess Puffer” in a new production of Rupert Holmes’ Tony® Award winning musical comedy THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD; musical direction by Paul Gemignani & directed by Roundabout’s Adams Associate Artistic Director Scott Ellis. The whodunit rollicking play-within-a-musical is the winner of five Tony® Awards including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical (Rupert Holmes) and Best Original Score (Rupert Holmes).

Chita Rivera (Princess Puffer) has won two Tony® Awards (Kiss of the Spider Woman; The Rink) and received seven additional Tony nominations including one for her performance as “Liliane La Fleur” in Roundabout’s Tony® Award winning musical Nine. Chita created the role of “Velma Kelly” in the original Broadway production of Chicago opposite Gwen Verdon (1975) and appears in the film version. Career highlights on Broadway include starring roles in Bye Bye Birdie, Guys and Dolls, Can-Can, Seventh Heaven, Mr. Wonderful and the film version of Sweet Charity. Chita has recorded and released a new CD entitled And Now I Swing and is on a nationwide concert tour of Chita Rivera: My Broadway.

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