Photo Flash: SMOKEY JOE'S CAFE Begins Tonight at Arena Stage
Smokey Joe's Café-The Songs of Leiber and Stoller transports audiences to the golden age of rock, rhythm and blues this spring at Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater. The show runs tonight, April 25-June 8, 2014 in the Fichandler Stage, and BroadwayWorld has a first look at the cast below!
Director Randy Johnson returns to Arena Stage following the success of A Night with Janis Joplin (which enjoyed two runs at Arena Stage followed by a subsequent run on Broadway) to helm this Grammy Award-winning tribute to legendary songwriting duo Jerry Leiberand Mike Stoller, which originally opened on Broadway in 1995 and became the longest running musical revue, topping 2,000 performances. Bursting with hit tunes including "Hound Dog," "Jailhouse Rock," "Stand by Me," "Love Potion #9" and "On Broadway," Smokey Joe's Café showcases choreography by Parker Esse (Arena Stage's The Music Man, Oklahoma!) and music direction by Rick Fox.
The production features the previously announced Tony Award winner Levi Kreis (Broadway's Million Dollar Quartet) and Helen Hayes Award winners E. Faye Butler (Arena Stage's Pullman Porter Blues, Oklahoma!) and Nova Y. Payton (Signature Theatre's Dreamgirls, Hairspray). They are joined by D.C.-area performers Jay Adriel, Austin Colby, Ashley Blair Fitzgerald, Michael J. Mainwaring, Stephawn P. Stephens and Kara-Tameika Watkins.
Led by Fox on piano, the band for Smokey Joe's Café features James Davis, Jr. (keyboard, Assistant Music Director), George Hummel (tenor and baritone saxophone), Steven Walker (guitar), Dan Hall (bass), Danny Villanueva (percussion) and Carroll Dashiell III (drums).
The creative team for Smokey Joe's Café includes Set & Projection Designer Caite Hevner Kemp, Costume DesignerIlona Somogyi, Lighting Designer Dan Ozminkowski, Sound Designer Carl Casella, Wig Designer Anne Nesmith, Assistant Choreographer Jessica Hartman, Stage Manager Kurt Hall, Assistant Stage Manager Christi B. Spann and Musical Contractor Rita Eggert.
Photo Credit: Tony Powell