Danny Burstein, Raúl Esparza, Judy Kuhn, Anika Noni Rose to Lead Encores! Off-Center's THE CRADLE WILL ROCK- Full Cast Announced!
Casting is complete for Marc Blitzstein¹s The Cradle Will Rock, the inaugural show of New York City Center¹s new Encores! Off-Center series, playing for five performances, July 10 13 at City Center. The cast includes Danny Burstein, Eisa Davis, Raúl Esparza, Peter Friedman, Aidan Gemme, Judy Kuhn, David Margulies, Martin Moran, Michael Park, Robert Petkoff, Da'Vine Joy Randolph, Anika Noni Rose, Matthew Saldivar and Henry Stram.
The show will be directed by Sam Gold and choreographed by Chase Brock; Chris Fenwick is the music director. Jeanine Tesori is the Encores! Off Center artistic director. In keeping with City Center¹s founding mission to make the arts accessible to all and to younger audiences, the majority of tickets are $25.
The Cradle Will Rock, with music, lyrics and book by Marc Blitzstein, is a powerful political satire and an extraordinary piece of theater history. Set against the backdrop of a steel strike and peopled with fat-cat capitalists, brutal policemen, heroic union organizers, and a warm-hearted prostitute, Blitzstein¹s 1937 battle hymn to the proletariat feels remarkably fresh.
The show was developed in 1937 with funds from the Federal Theater Project, a branch of the WPA. The original production, directed by Orson Welles, was shut down four days before opening. Officially, it was shut down due to WPA budget cuts, but many cited the show¹s pro-union themes as the government¹s impetus for its closing. The remarkable, true story of The Cradle Will Rock¹s historic 1937 opening, as told by the great John Houseman, can be heard here below!
The show finally opened Off-Broadway at the Venice Theatre in June of 1937 with private funding. It next opened on Broadway at the Windsor Theater on January 3, 1938 and ran 108 performances.