9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL to Open Walnut's 206th Anniversary Season,
Walnut Street Theatre opens its landmark 206th season with the wildly entertaining 9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL. Directed by Bruce Lumpkin, with choreography by Michelle Gaudette, this outrageous musical comedy begins previews on September 2nd, opens on September 10th and runs through October 19th on the Walnut's Mainstage.
Dolly Parton herself is excited about the Walnut Street Theatre's upcoming production stating, "I'm so happy to know that 9 to 5 is in Philadelphia. Hope you enjoy the show as much as I enjoyed writing it. Have Fun!"
9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL is the hilarious new Broadway show, featuring music and lyrics by Parton. The Oscar, Tony Award and Grammy-nominated songs include her original hit title song, along with "Backwoods Barbie" and "Shine Like the Sun." Pushed to the boiling point in the work place, three female co-workers concoct a plan to get even with their sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical boss. They conspire to take control of the company and learn there's nothing they can't do, even in a man's world. Brassy, thought-provoking and sprinkled with a little romance, 9 TO 5 is a story of friendship, delicious revenge and getting ahead in the Rolodex era.
9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL is based on the iconic 1980's film. International music sensation Dolly Parton wrote its toe-tapping score, including 16 brand new songs for the stage, something she had never done before. The book was written by the original screenwriter, Patricia Resnick. The show had its world premiere in Los Angeles in 2008, with its Broadway premiere following in 2009 at the Marquis Theatre. The production was recognized with four Tony Award nominations, including Best Original Score, a Grammy nomination for Best Musical Show Album and a record-breaking 15 Drama Desk Award nominations, including Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Music and Outstanding Lyrics. 9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL toured nationally in 2010, and continues to tour throughout the UK.
Superstar Dolly Parton is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and a winner of seven Grammy Awards, ten Country Music Association Awards, five Academy of Country Music Awards, three American Music Awards and the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year Award. She made her film debut in 9 to 5 as Doralee Rhodes, which led to performances in films including Steel Magnolias, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Rhinestone, and Straight Talk. Two of Parton's Grammy Awards were received for her song 9 To 5, Best Country Song and Best Country Vocal Performance. She continues to thrill the world with her music, as she is currently on a World Tour for her 42nd album Blue Smoke - The Best Of, which is #2 on the Official UK chart. Parton was also recently recognized with 100 Million Album Sales Award, for her career sales of albums worldwide.
Director Bruce Lumpkin returns to the Walnut to kick off the season in style. His numerous directing credits for Walnut's Mainstage and Studio 3 productions include last season's audience favorite In the Heights, along with Grease, Miss Saigon, Fiddler on the Roof, Man of La Mancha, Evita, West Side Story, and Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel. Choreographer Michelle Gaudette's moves will energize the daily grind with rhythms provided by Musical Director Douglass G. Lutz. A former Rockette, Gaudette has previously choreographed at the Walnut for productions including Grease, Miss Saigon, Fiddler on the Roof, State Fair, Man of La Mancha, Carousel and Evita. Lutz has guided numerous Mainstage musicals for the past fourteen seasons, most recently How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Elf, In the Heights, Grease, The Music Man, Miss Saigon, Fiddler on the Roof, The King and I and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.
Tony Award nominee Dee Hoty will join the cast as Violet Newstead, a role she played on the National Tour. Hoty entertained Walnut audiences when she took the stage as Melissa Frake in Rodgers and Hammerstein's State Fair. Her Broadway performances in The Will Rogers Follies, The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public and Footloose have each been recognized with a Tony Award nomination for Best Actress in a Musical. Additional Broadway credits include Mamma Mia! (Donna Sheridan), City of Angels (Outer Critics Circle Nomination), Me and My Girl, Big River, The Five O'Clock Girl, and Shakespeare's Cabaret. Amy Bodnar returns to the Walnut as Doralee Rhodes. Bodnar was recently seen on the Mainstage as Hedy La Rue in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. She received a Barrymore nomination for her performance of Ulla in The Producers at the Walnut. On Broadway she has performed in Oklahoma! and Ragtime. Amanda Rose makes her Walnut debut as Judy Bernly. Rose has been seen both on Broadway and in the National Tour of Wicked. Additionally, she has toured with Dr. Dolittle and Oklahoma!, and has numerous regional credits including Paper Mill Playhouse, Good Speed Opera House, Bristol Riverside Theater and Theatre Under the Stars.
The "sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical boss" Franklin Hart, Jr. will be played by Broadway's Paul Schoeffler. Schoeffler is currently performing in Rock of Ages as Hertz. His additional Broadway credits include Sweet Charity, Nine, Peter Pan, and Beauty and the Best. At the Walnut, Schoeffler has been seen in productions including LES MISERABLES (Javert), Peter Pan (Captain Hook), Man of La Mancha (Don Quixote) and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Lawrence Jameson). Walnut audiences will remember Mary Martello, playing Roz Keith, from her performance as Abby Brewster in Arsenic and Old Lace, as well as The Music Man and Grease.
The employees on the job, climbing that long corporate ladder to success, are ensemble members, and Walnut favorites, Ben Dibble (Joe), Maria Konstantinidis (Maria), Ben Michael (Dwayne), Ellie Mooney (Margaret), Paul L. Nolan (Tinsworthy/Detective), Owen Pelesh (Bob Enright), Fran Prisco (Dick), Elizabeth Racanelli, Kerri Rose and Matthew Rossoff. Ensemble members Mindy Dougherty (Kathy), Billy D. Hart, Ben Liebert (Josh), Kimberly Maxson and Jenny Piersol (Missy) each make their Walnut debut with this production.
From a filing room full of sweet sounds of gossip, to a boss' office perfect for the boys club, the Walnut welcomes back Robert Andrew Kovach as Set Designer (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Elf, The Music Man, The King and I). He is joined by Lighting Designer Paul Black (How to Succeed..., In the Heights, The Music Man), Costume Designer Colleen Grady (Elf, In the Heights, Grease, Buddy - The Buddy Holly Story), and Sound Designer Will Pickens (Elf; Love Story, the musical).
9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL runs at the Walnut September 2 through October 19. This production is sponsored by PricewaterhouseCoopers. Media Sponsor is NBC 10. For tickets and information, call 215-574-3550 or 800-982-2787. Tickets are also available online 24/7 by visiting www.WalnutStreetTheatre.org or Ticketmaster.