TheatreWorks to Stage ONCE ON THIS ISLAND 3/5-30

TheatreWorks, the nationally acclaimed theatre of Silicon Valley, presents ONCE ON THIS ISLAND from the Tony Award-winning creators of Ragtime. A timeless legend filled with joy, heartache, and adventure, ONCE ON THIS ISLAND, winner of the Oliver Award for Best New Musical, boasts a score pulsing with irresistible Caribbean beats by Tony Award-winner Stephen Flaherty, with book and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens. TheatreWorks Artistic Director Robert Kelley will direct this uplifting musical, which takes its story from a book by Rosa Guy, in turn inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's "The Little Mermaid." Choreographed by award-winning director, choreographer, and actor Gerry McIntyre, ONCE ON THIS ISLAND plays March 5-30, 2014 (press opening March 8) at TheatreWorks at the Lucie Stern Theatre in Palo Alto. For tickets and information the public may visit or call (650) 463-1960.

Heartwarming and inspiring, ONCE ON THIS ISLAND follows Ti Moune, a peasant girl on a tropical island in the French Caribbean. When she rescues a wealthy young aristocrat from the wreckage of a car accident, a star-crossed love affair begins in defiance of the class divide. A vibrant musical told in one act, it is based on the novel My Love, My Love by Rosa Guy. Once on This Island was originally staged Off-Broadway in 1990, moved to Broadway later that year, and ran until the end of 1991, earning eight Tony Award nominations including Best Musical and Best Original Score. The subsequent 1994 West End production received the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Musical. TheatreWorks staged the musical in 1993.

TheatreWorks has assembled a talented cast for this high-energy musical, including Salisha Thomas as Ti Moune (seen in performances at Good Company Players and Disneyland Resort, among others); Paris Nix as Daniel (seen in the United States tour of Seussical the Musical, the European tour of The Harlem Gospel Singers, and in productions at Weathervane Repertory Theatre, and Flamingo Arts Theatre in Japan, among others); Berwick Haynes as Tonton Julian (seen at TheatreWorks in Passion and in productions at Portland Center Stage, Marin Theatre Company, Broadway by the Bay, San Jose Repertory Theatre, The Goodman Theatre, among others); Rotimi Agbabiaka as Armand (seen in productions with Center Repertory Company, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, and San Francisco Mime Troupe, among others); Dawn L. Troupe as Mama Euralie (seen at TheatreWorks in Caroline, Or Change, Dessa Rose, Crowns, Memphis, Book of Days, and Ragtime, and in productions at Marin Theatre Company, Shotgun Players, and Broadway by the Bay, among others); Omari Tau as Agwe, God of Water (seen in two Broadway national tours of Disney's The Lion King and in productions at Theatre Under The Stars, Houston Ebony Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and The Great Caruso, among others); Safiya Fredericks as Asaka, Mother of the Earth (seen at SF Playhouse, San Jose Repertory Theatre, and Flatiron Playhouse in New York, among others); Max Kumangai as Papa Ge, Demon of Death (seen in the Broadway national tour of Hair, Off-Broadway in Lysistrata Jones, The Civil War, and What's that Smell, in Scottsboro Boys at American Conservatory Theatre, The Old Globe Theatre, and the Ahmanson, and on television in HBO's "Boardwalk Empire"); Adrienne Muller as Erzulie, Goddess of Love (seen in The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, the national tour of Disney's The Lion King and the Las Vegas production of Mamma Mia!, TheatreWorks' Caroline, Or Change and Ragtime, and in productions at San Jose Stage Company, and American Musical Theatre of San Jose, among others); Khalia Davis as Little Ti Moune (seen at TheatreWorks in Memphis and Jane Eyre: The Musical, and in productions at California Shakespeare Theatre, Magic Theater, Willows Theater, and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, among others); and Michelle Cabinian as Andrea (seen at TheatreWorks in Somewhere and in productions at 42nd Street Moon, Old Globe Theater, and San Diego Repertory Theatre, among others).

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