JERRY'S GIRLS to Open This Spring at Walnut Street Theatre
Walnut Street Theatre's 2016-2017 Independence Studio on 3 season concludes with an electrifying tribute to an all-American master of song, Jerry Herman, in JERRY'S GIRLS. Directed and choreographed by Ellie Mooney, the production begins with previews on April 4th, opens on April 6th and continues through July 2nd in the Walnut's Independence Studio on 3.
In this musical celebration of the legendary Jerry Herman, taking center stage are some of Broadway's best musicals, including Hello Dolly!, Mame, Mack and Mabel, Dear World and La Cage Aux Folles. JERRY'S GIRLS celebrates glamour, optimism, love, melody and women! The all-female cast reminds us how Jerry Herman has given voice to some of Broadway's biggest legends, with his unique ability to write comedy, ballads and show-stoppers. He's won multiple Tony, Grammy, Olivier and Drama Desk Awards but, first and foremost, he's won audience's hearts!
JERRY'S GIRLS had its beginning in a nightclub in Manhattan in 1981, with Herman himself as part of the show. After the success of his La Cage Aux Folles in 1983, Herman and Larry Alford, who worked with Herman on the original revue, were approached to expand JERRY'S GIRLS into a full-length production. The show had its world premiere in 1984 in Palm Beach, Florida starring Carol Channing, Andrea McArdle, and Leslie Uggams. The Broadway premiere followed in 1985 at St. James Theatre, starring Leslie Uggams, Dorothy Loudon and Chita Rivera.
Award-winning American composer and lyricist Jerry Herman premiered his first Broadway musical, Milk and Honey, in 1961. His shows Hello, Dolly!, Mame, and La Cage Aux Folles have given him the distinction of being the only composer/lyricist in history to have had three musicals that ran more than 1,500 consecutive performances on Broadway. His additional Broadway shows include Dear World, Mack & Mabel and The Grand Tour. Currently, Herman is seeing two revivals of his shows, Hello, Dolly! on Broadway starring Bette Midler, and Dear World Off-Broadway starring Tyne Daly. His numerous awards include Tony Awards, Grammy Awards, Olivier Awards, Drama Desk Awards, the Johnny Mercer Award, the Richard Rodgers Award, the Oscar Hammerstein Award, the Frederick Lowe Award, the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Theatre Hall of Fame and The Kennedy Center Honors.
Ellie Mooney returns to the Walnut's Independence Studio on 3 as director and choreographer for the production. Mooney has been seen on stage in numerous Walnut productions, including The Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins, Amadeus and The Rise and Fall of Little Voice. She is currently performing on the mainstage in Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest. As director and choreographer, Mooney's work has been seen at the Walnut in Irving Berlin's I Love a Piano, WST for Kids' Fancy Nancy The Musical, and Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. Dan Kazemi (The Irish and How They Got That Way) joins Mooney as music and vocal director, and pianist.
JERRY'S GIRLS stars three glamorous leading ladies, Barbara McCulloh, Rebecca Robbins and Adrienne S. Wells. McCulloh was last seen on the Walnut's stage in The Wizard of Oz. On Broadway, she has seen as Mrs. Darling in Peter Pan and Anna in The King and I. She has also toured nationally with Brighton Beach Memoirs and South Pacific. Rebecca Robbins returns to the Walnut having most recently returned from the North American Tour of The Phantom of The Opera, a show that she's also performed on Broadway. Robbins' additional credits include the Broadway production of A Tale of Two Cities and Off-Broadway in 5 shows with City Center Encores!, The Music Teacher and My Fair Lady. Walnut audiences will remember Robbins from Rodgers and Hammerstein's A Grand Night for Singing and as Mrs. Banks in Mary Poppins. Adrienne S. Wells was most recently seen at the Walnut in The Other Place, with additional credits including High Society, Memphis and A Christmas Carol. Regionally, Wells has been seen in Shakespeare's Macbeth and Spring Awakening.
Setting a glamorous scene for some of the most memorable moments Herman's music has given audiences on stage, Roman Tatarowicz (The Other Place, Red, I Love a Piano) returns to the Walnut as set designer. Costume Designer Mary Folino (South Pacific, The Wizard of Oz) will dress the ladies in the rich, lush costumes, iconic to the heroines Herman's songs have made famous. Shon Causer (Arsenic and Old Lace, Ethel!) and Ryan Peavey (South Pacific, A Christmas Carol) return to the Walnut as lighting designer and sound designer, respectively.
Season sponsor for the 2016-2017 Independence Studio on 3 Season is The Independence Foundation. Media season sponsors are Philly Weekly and WRTI Radio. Tickets are $35-$40 and are now available at 215-574-3550 or 800-982-2787. Tickets are also available at walnutstreettheatre.org or Ticketmaster.com.