CAROUSEL Closes at Reprise Theatre Company, 2/7
The Reprise Theatre Company's production of CAROUSEL will close on February 7, 2010.
The 2009-2010 season of Reprise Theatre Company continues with Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Carousel," running through February 7 at UCLA's Freud Playhouse. Alexandra Silber stars as Julie Jordan, direct from her critically acclaimed portrayal of Julie Jordan in "Carousel" at the Savoy Theatre in London's West End (TMA Award - Best Actress). Silber is joined by Robert Patteri as Billy Bigelow ("Scarlet Pimpernel," "Beauty and the Beast".) Veteran character actor M. Emmet Walsh appears as the Starkeeper. Michael Michetti, co-artistic director of The Theatre at Boston Court, will direct, with choreography by Lee Martino and musical direction by Darryl Archibald.
The cast also features Jane Noseworthy as Carrie, James Leo Ryan as Jigger, Victoria Strong as Cousin Nettie, and Andy Taylor as Enoch Snow. The ensemble of "Carousel" includes Eydie Alyson, Seth Belliston, Bradley Benjamin, Jessica Carter, Blake Ewing, Christopher Guilmet, Chris Holly, Tracy Lore, Kim Mikesell, Gregory North, Candy Olsen, Allison Paraiso, Jo Patrick, Sean Smith, Leslie Stevens, John Todd, and Scott Weber.
"Carousel," with book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein ll and music by Richard Rodgers, first opened on Broadway in 1945 and in 1999 was hailed by Time magazine as "the best musical of the 20th century - that set the standards for the 20th century musical." "Carousel" is presented by special arrangement with the Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization.
Single tickets are available November 9 for "Carousel" online at www.reprise.org or through the UCLA Central Ticket Office at 310/825-2101.
"Carousel" Director Michael Michetti explains "Some signature elements of Reprise's approach, including minimalist sets and an on-stage orchestra, are being turned to our advantage as we create a production that emphasizes both the story's sense of community as well as the intimacy of its central love story. By stripping away some of the bows and frills usually associated with "Carousel," and by exploring the simple, working-class New England culture of the period, we hope this production will allow the audience to hear this beloved play in a whole new way, integrating its moving story with the epic beauty of Rodgers & Hammerstein's score and the vibrant spectacle of its dances."
Michael Michetti (Director) is co-artistic director of The Theatre at Boston Court, has directed The Theatre @ Boston Court's productions of "dark play or stories for boys" (L.A. Drama Critics Circle nominations for Production, Direction), "Paradise Lost: Shadows and Wings" (Ovation Nominations for Musical, Director of a Musical), "A Picture of Dorian Gray" (LADCC Award for Direction), "Pera Palas" (LADCC Awards for Production, Direction), "Summertime," and its inaugural production of "Romeo and Juliet: Antebellum New Orleans, 1836."
A director of plays and musicals, new works and classics, his diverse credits include: the celebrated production of Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents' "Anyone Can Whistle" (incorporating revisions made by Michetti and approved by the authors) at the Matrix Theatre; David Hare's "Amy's View" starring Carol Lawrence at Florida Rep; David Mamet's "A Life in the Theatre" starring HAl Holbrook at the Pasadena Playhouse; the world premiere of "Ouroboros" by The Theatre @ Boston Court's literary manager Tom Jacobson (LA Weekly Award - Production of the Year); acclaimed productions of Brecht's rarely staged "Edward II" and Aphra Behn's restoration comedy "The Rover," both for Circle X at the Actors' Gang Theatre; the world premiere of Sheila Callaghan's "Crawl, Fade to White" at Theatre of NOTE; the Ovation-nominated productions of "Titanic" for Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities and "Sweeney Todd" starring Amanda McBroom and George Ball; "As You Like It" and Moliere's "Don Juan" for A Noise Within; and the recent Reprise Theatre Company productions of "Man of La Mancha" starring Brent Spiner and Julia Migenes, and "Li'l Abner" starring Cathy Rigby and Fred Willard.
He is a double Ovation Award winner (as director and co-producer, with Eileen T'Kaye) for his production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream," set in British colonized India. Michetti has received numerous theatre honors including Ovation, Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle, L.A. Weekly, Back Stage West Garland, and Drama-Logue Awards, among others.
Lee Martino (Choreographer) is the resident choreographer for Reprise Theatre Company under the Artistic Direction of Jason Alexander. Choreography for Reprise includes "The Fantasticks," "Li'l Abner," "On Your Toes," "Damn Yankees," "On The Town," "Brigadoon," "I Love My Wife" and several of the summer events at The John Anson Ford Amphitheatre. Most recent credits include: directing this year's Alzheimer's Benefit; directing and staging American Stars In Concert starring Kimberly Locke, Melinda Doolittle, and Diana DeGarmo; choreography for the soon-to-be-released animated feature ‘"Alpha Omega;" "Kiss Of The Spider Woman" for Havok Theatre Company, for which she just received the Los Angeles Drama Critics' Award; "Fiddler On The Roof" for the Rubicon Theatre Company; the Bravo series "Step It Up and Dance."
Other credits include: "Beehive" at the El Portal Theatre; "All Shook Up" for Musical Theatre West; "I Do I Do" and "Side By Side By Sondheim" for The Pasadena Playhouse; direction and choreography for several large-scale shows for Harley-Davidson throughout the country; Warner Bros.' animated feature "The King and I;" Universal Studios' "New York Rascal Show;" Disney's "Santa Clause 3" Stage Show at the El Capitan Theatre; Disney "International's Latin American Stage Tour," "A Dream Is A Wish;" the Opening Gala for Theatre Under the Stars, TUTS; Hobby Performing Arts Center, the Opening of Ford Field, the Detroit Lions football stadium, starring Gladys Knight; Lee's work has been seen in many S.T.A.G.E. (Los Angeles' longest-running AIDS benefit), Actor's Fund, and Alzheimer's benefits, as well as the CHOC Follies, an event for Children's Hospital of Orange County.
Lee's choreography has won her three Los Angeles Drama Critic's Awards, two Ovation Awards, Garland awards, and many nominations for these awards. Her "On Your Toes" for Reprise won her the 2007 Ovation, LADCC and Garland awards. Lee is a member of SSDC.
Darryl Archibald (Musical Director) Tours include: Disney's "The Lion King" (vocal coach/assistant conductor), "A Grand Night for Singing," "The All Night Strut,"and "Jerry's Girls." Other shows include: "Wicked" at the Pantages Theater (substitute conductor), "Ragtime" (Musical Theater West); "Swing!" (Sacramento Music Circus); "A Chorus Line" directed by Kay Cole and "The King and I" with Deborah Gibson (Cabrillo Music Theater); "Swing!" (McCoy/Rigby Ent.); "Marry Me A Little" - revised version (Celebration Theater); "Once On This Island," "Li'l Abner" with Cathy Rigby and Fred Willard; "Merrily We Roll Along" with Teri Hatcher; "I Do! I Do!" with Diana Canova and Harry Groener (Reprise); "My Fair Lady," "1776," "Little Shop Of Horrors," "Camelot," and "Forever Plaid" (Utah Shakespearean Festival); "Ain't Misbehavin'" directed by Ken Page (CLOSBC); "Threepenny Opera," "Raisin" and "A Christmas Carol" (ICT); "The Fix," "Kiss Of The Spider Woman," "Lady In the Dark," and "Sail Away" (Musical Theater Guild). Arrangement and orchestration credits include: the prime-time television special "A Hollywood Holiday Celebration" (ABC), "The Fountain Show" and "Christmas Trolley Show" (The Grove Los Angeles).
Based on a story by Ferenc Molnar, "Carousel" takes place between 1873 and 1888 in a small New England fishing village and revolves around the star crossed love affair between Billy Bigelow, a travelling carnival man, and Julie Jordan, a mill worker. The score includes songs that have become standards including "You'll Never Walk Alone," "Soliloquy," and "If I Loved You." Rodgers and Hammerstein considered it their personal favorite.
Winner of the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award as Best Musical of 1945, the Broadway run of "Carousel" was followed by a two year national tour. In London "Carousel" followed "Oklahoma!" directly into the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, opening in June of 1950 and playing for over a year and a half. In 1956 the motion picture version was released by Twentieth Century Fox. Filmed on location in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, it was originally slated to star Frank Sinatra as Billy and Judy Garland as Julie. However, she withdrew prior to filming and he left over a contract dispute during the first weeks of shooting. They were replaced by the "Oklahoma!" movie co-stars Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones.
"Carousel" has been performed by hundreds of theatre and opera companies throughout the world. Notable productions include the Music Theater of Lincoln Center with John Raitt re-creating the role of Billy (1965); a television version starring Robert Goulet with choreography by Edward Villella, broadcast on ABC-TV (1967); and a summer run at the U.S. Pavilion of the 1958 Brussels Exposition, with Jan Clayton re-creating the role of Julie. Director Nicholas Hytner, choreographer Sir Kenneth MacMillan and designer Bob Crowley collaborated on the revelatory 1992 Royal National Theatre production of "Carousel" in London, which played to sold-out houses in the Lyttleton Theatre before transferring to the Shaftesbury Theatre in the West End the following September, where it was presented by Cameron Mackintosh.
In March 1994, "Carousel" marked its first return to Broadway since the original run, playing for a year at the Vivian Beaumont Theater. Presented by Lincoln Center Theater, this "Carousel" went on to receive a record-setting five Tony Awards (the most of any show that season), including Best Director of a Musical (Hytner), Best Choreography (MacMillan), Best Scenic Design (Crowley) and Best Revival of a Musical 1994.
Since its inception in 1997, Reprise Theatre Company has been a focus of the Los Angeles musical theatre community, producing productions of great American musicals, and a wide variety off concerts, staged-readings, special events and outreach programs.
In May 2007, Jason Alexander became Artistic Director and he was joined by Susan Dietz, Producing Director.
Since its inaugural production of Burt Bacharach and Hal David's "Promises, Promises," which starred Mr. Alexander, Reprise has brought to the stage vibrant productions from all eras of American musical theatre including the Gershwins' "Of Thee I Sing" and "Strike Up the Band," Cole Porter's "Anything Goes," and Rodgers and Hart's "The Boys from Syracuse" and "Babes in Arms," as well as Richard Rodgers' later "No Strings." The "Golden Era" has been well represented - Burton Lane and E.Y. Harburg with "Finian's Rainbow," Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe with "Brigadoon," Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden and Adolph Green with "On the Town" and "Wonderful Town," Irving Berlin with "Call Me Madam," Robert Wright and George Forrest with "Kismet," both of the Richard Adler and Jerry Ross musicals "The Pajama Game" and "Damn Yankees," Johnny Mercer and Gene dePaul with "Li'l Abner," Jule Styne with "Bells are Ringing," and Frank Loesser with "The Most Happy Fella."
Musical theatre reached a new peak of popularity in the sixties, along with new creative talents, and Reprise has presented shows by many of them including Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick with "She Loves Me," Gerome Ragni, James Rado and Galt MacDermot's "Hair," Sherman Edwards and Peter Stone with "1776," Charles Adams and Lee Strouse with "Applause," Stephen Schwartz with "Pippin," Cy Coleman with "On the Twentieth Century" (libretto by Betty Comden and Adolph Green) and "City of Angels" (lyrics by David Zippel), Jerry Herman with "Mack and Mabel," and three Stephen Sondheim musicals - "Company," "Sweeney Todd," and "Sunday in the Park with George."
Many of the great stage performers working today, as well as those who make their residence in primarily in Los Angeles, have appeared in Reprise shows including Scott Bakula, Christine Baranski, Brent Barrett, Orson Bean, Jodi Benson, Stephen Bogardus, Dan Butler, Len Cariou, Carolee Carmello, Vicki Carr, Anthony Crivello, Jason Danielely, Lea DeLaria, Clevant Derricks, Manoel Feliciano, Rodney Gilfry, Kelsey Grammer, Harry Groener, Bob Gunton, Sam Harris, Gregory Harrison, Mimi Hines, Judy Kaye, Jane Krakowski, Marc Kudish, Judith Light, Rebecca Luker, Maureen McGovern, Joey McIntyre, Donna McKechnie, Andrea Marcovicci, Marin Mazzie, Karen Morrow, Burke Moses, Kelli O'Hara, Ken Page, Robert Picardo, David Hyde Pierce, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Roger Rees, Charles Nelson Reilly, Cathy Rigby, Douglas Sills, Rex Smith, Steven Weber, Marisa Jaret Winokur, Lillias White, Fred Willard, and Rachel York.