CYRANO, Starring Peter Dinklage, Begins Run at Goodspeed Musicals
Casting of Goodspeed Musicals' Cyrano is complete. A stellar ten person cast has been assembled for this inspired new take on the Edmond Rostand classic Cyrano de Bergerac. Film and TV actor Blake Jenner will play Christian. He joins previously announced Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Peter Dinklage, who will play Cyrano alongside film actress Haley Bennett as Roxanne in this bold new musical. This exciting musical is adapted by Erica Schmidt in collaboration with members of the Grammy Award-winning indie alternative band The National. Cyrano will run August 3 - September 2, 2018 at The Terris Theatre in Chester, Conn. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
The legendary romance about a proud and impassioned poet who ghostwrites love letters is rekindled in a timeless and unconventional new musical. Cyrano agrees to woo his true love, Roxanne, on behalf of another in this classic tale of unrequited love. New music by members of the Grammy Award-winning indie alternative band The National drives this story of mistaken identity, selfless courage and buried desire. Directed by Erica Schmidt, Cyrano features Music by Aaronand Bryce Dessner of The National and Lyrics by Matt Berninger of The National and Carin Besser.
The cast will be led by Peter Dinklage, whose breakout role came in 2003, when he redefined the concept of a leading man in the Sundance Film Festival Audience Award-winner The Station Agent. Since then, Peter has been a constant force in the acting world, best-known for his role as Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones, for which he has won two Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award. He has starred in such films as X-Men: Days of Future Past, Death at a Funeral, Living in Oblivion and many others. Recent films include Martin McDonagh's Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri with Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell,Mark Palansky's Rememory with Anton Yelchin and in Jon Avnet's Three Christs with Richard Gere.
Dinklage's theater credits include A Month in the Country at Classic Stage Company, Things We Want at The New Group (Drama League Award Nomination,) the role of Chester in the world premiere of Knickerbocker at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and the title roles in William Shakespeare's Richard III and Anton Checkov's Uncle Vanya among others. His upcoming film projects include HBO's My Dinner with Hervé with Jamie Dornan and Reed Morano's I Think We're Alone Now with Elle Fanning.
Haley Bennett most recently appeared in Jason Hall's Thank You For Your Service opposite Miles Teller. Upcoming, Ms. Bennett will star in The Red Sea Diving Resort opposite Chris Evans. Previously, Bennett starred in the film adaptation of The Girl on the Train opposite Emily Blunt, in Antoine Fuqua's The Magnificent Seven opposite Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt and in Warren Beatty's Rules Don't Apply. Other notable film credits include Hardcore Henry, The Equalizer opposite Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz, Marley and Me and Gregg Araki's Kaboom. Bennett made her on-screen debut opposite Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant in the film Music and Lyrics as pop singer Cora Corman.
Blake Jenner starred in the critically-acclaimed feature The Edge of Seventeen opposite Hailee Steinfeld and Woody Harrelson. He also appeared alongside Logan Lerman and Elle Fanning in Sidney Hall. Jenner was the lead in Richard Linklater's nostalgia comedy feature Everybody Wants Some!! Jenner first broke out on the second season of The Glee Project where he was selected as one of fourteen contestants to compete, and ultimately won the competition, landing him a role as series regular Ryder Lynn role on the hit television comedy Glee. Blake has a recurring role on the series Supergirl. His latest film, American Animals in which he stars alongside Evan Peters, Ann Dowd and Barry Keoghan, is now in theaters.
Newly-announced cast includes:
Tom Riis Farrell (Ragueneau/Cadet) appeared Off-Broadway in The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, starring Al Pacino, Charles Durning, Tony Randall, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi and Paul Giamatti. Prior to that, he was in the Broadway, San Francisco, Pasadena and touring productions of Claudia Shear's playDirty Blonde, receiving a Helen Hayes Award and a Joseph Jefferson Award nomination for his performance. Other Broadway and Off-Broadway credits includeCoram Boy, 1776, Wrong Mountain and City Center's Encores! Li'l Abner. His many television credits include recent appearances on NBC's Rise, Mr. Robot, Nurse Jackie and Law & Order, among others. His work in film includes roles in Trust the Man, The Stepford Wives, Almost Famous, Bringing Out the Dead, The Out-of-Towners, The Devil's Advocate and Sleepless in Seattle among others.
Damon J. Gillespie (Le Bret) starred as Robbie Thorne on the recent NBC series Rise. On Broadway he performed in the productions of Disney's Newsies(Buttons) and Aladdin. He played Chino in Carnegie Hall's West Side Story and was recently part of Alliance Theatre's World premiere of The Prom, directed byCasey Nicholaw. Other theater credits include In The Heights (Pittsburgh CLO) and Dear Evan Hansen (workshop). In addition, Mr. Gillespie was featured in Inside Amy Schumer's Emmy-winning sketch "Girl you don't need Makeup."
Patrick Kerr (Jodelet/Renaudot/Cadet) whose Broadway credits include the recent Roundabout Theater Company production of Travesties, You Can't Take It With You and The Ritz. He has appeared on dozens of televisions shows, including recurring roles on Curb Your Enthusiasm and Fraiser. His numerous film credits include Domino, Wrong Way to Sundance and Jeffrey, among others.
Laith Nakli (DeGuiche) appeared Off-Broadway in Aftermath and War. Nakli wrote and performed in the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater premiere of Shesh Yak. He has appeared in numerous television shows including, as a regular on 24: Legacy and The Long Road Home. His film credits include 12 Strong, The Wall,Rising Tide, Allegiance, The Visitor and many more.
Gayle Samuels (Chaperone/Mother Marthe) whose Broadway credits include the recent revival of Children of a Lesser God, Sunset Boulevard, Grind andDancin'. Ms. Samuels performed in The Metropolitan Opera's Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and Off-Broadway in Sistas, Little Shop of Horrors, Daughter and The Dark Star From Harlem, among others. Gayle performed in the National Tour of Little House on the Prairie with Melissa Gilbert and in the International Tours ofAin't Misbehavin' and Sophisticated Ladies. Ms. Samuels toured internationally with Harry Belafonte and has worked at numerous regional theaters across the country. She has appeared in several films and television shows, including Black Nativity, Honeybee, The Tides That Bind, Poses, CBS's Bull, Madame Secretary, The Class and FX's The Americans to name a few.
Claire Saunders (Orange Girl/Sister Claire) appeared Off-Broadway in Marry Harry at the York and Taming of the Shrew at New York Classical Theatre. Ms. Saunders's other stage credits include Errol and Fidel at NYMF, Saunders Siblings Cabaret at 54 Below/Feinstein's, Pirates Of Penzance at Barrington Stage and Symphony Space's All in the Family Concert. Her recent film credits include Those Tiny Pieces, That Night and a Kiko in The Intern.
Charlie Thurston (Montgomery/Cadet) is an actor and playwright who splits his time between NYC and Providence, RI, where he's been a member of the resident acting company at Trinity Rep since 2013. There, he most recently starred as Tateh in the musical Ragtime. He is also a founding member of The Williams Project in Seattle and has appeared in theatres across the country including Fault Line Theatre, Cleveland Playhouse, Intiman Theatre, Arden Theatre Company, Baltimore Center Stage, Chautauqua Theater Company, Riverside Theatre, and Redmoon Theatre. As a writer, his play The History Room was nominated for a Henry Award for Best New Play for its production at Creede Repertory Theatre in Colorado. He also appeared in the ABC pilot Broad Squad and the films Money Monster directed by Jodie Foster and Life, Itself which comes out soon.
Original music for Cyrano is by Aaron and Bryce Dessner. Aaron Dessner is a New York-based songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/producer, best known as a member of the Grammy Award-winning indie alternative band The National. Aaron produced Frightened Rabbit's album Painting Of A Panic Attack on Atlantic Records, Lisa Hannigan's At Swim and worked as an associate producer on Mumford & Sons' 2015 album Wilder Mind. Bryce Dessner is a member of The National and co-founder of the Brassland label alongside Alec Hanley Bemis and his twin brother Aaron Dessner. Bryce contributed music to the major motion picture The Revenant and is curator for the MusicNOW Festival, held annually for over a decade in his hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio. He has collaborated on projects as a performer and composer with some of the most prominent names in modern music, including Sufjan Stevens, the Bang on a Can All-Stars, Philip Glass, Erik Friedlander and Nico Muhly.
Lyrics are by Matt Berninger and Carin Besser. Matt Berninger is the front man and lyricist for indie alternative bands The National and EL VY. The National's seventh album Sleep Well Beast has earned a 2018 Grammy Award for Best Alternative Album. He is currently developing a television series with Carin Besser andTom Berninger based on their award-winning film Mistaken for Strangers. Carin Besser co-produced and edited the film Mistaken for Strangers. As a writer, Ms. Besser has been co-writing lyrics for indie alternative band The National since their 2007 album Boxer.
Cyrano will be directed by Princess Grace Award-recipient Erica Schmidt, whose previous directing credits include Richard II with Robert Sean Leonard at The Old Globe, Turgenev's A Month In The Country with Peter Dinklage and Taylor Schilling at Classic Stage Company, Dennis Kelly's Taking Care of Baby at Manhattan Theatre Club and the Obie Award-winning Invasion!. Ms. Schmidt wrote and directed All The Fine Boys, which was presented this past spring at The New Group, featuring Abigail Breslin and Isabelle Fuhrman.
Choreography for Cyrano will be by Jeff and Rick Kuperman, who recently choreographed a New Year's Eve performance for Phish at Madison Square Garden; Frank Wildhorn's The Count Of Monte Cristo in SaintPetersburg, Russia; Broadway Asia's immersive Peter Pan in Beijing, China; Orpheus in the Berkshires at the Williamstown Theater Festival and the New York Times Critics' Pick The Light Princess at A.R.T/New Victory.
Co-Scenic Designers will be Tony Award-winner Christine Jones and Amy Rubin. Ms. Jones's Broadway credits include Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two; Old Times; Hands on a Hardbody; On a Clear Day You Can See Forever; Everyday Rapture; American Idiot and Spring Awakening among others. Ms. Rubin's credits include the Off-Broadway productions of Miles for Mary, All the Fine Boys and Edward Albee's Occupant.
Costume Design will by Andrea Lauer whose recent credits include Richard the II at The Old Globe, Lovely Rita (a multi-media event in celebration of the Beatles' 50th release of Sgt. Peppers in Liverpool, England) and A Chorus Line at The MUNY. Her work has been seen on Broadway in American Idiot and Bring it On, the Musical. New York credits include School for Scandal (Lucille Lortel), The Romantics (Playwrights Horizons), Fulfillment (Flea Theatre), Brooklynite (The Vineyard Theatre), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Classic Stage Company), Title and Deed (Signature Theatre), What It's All About (New York Theatre Workshop) and Murder For Two (New World Stages / National Tour). Regional credits include Into The Woods, Grease and The Addams Family (The MUNY); Luck Be A Lady (Asolo Repertory Theatre) and A Raisin in the Sun (Chautauqua Theatre Company). Upcoming projects include the world premiere of Christopher Oscar Peña's The Strangers (set and costumes) and an Evening with Meow Meow with London Philharmonic at the Royal Festival Hall (production design). Ms. Lauer works as a stylist for various artists, commercials and publications; her work can be seen in Rolling Stone, Vogue, Interview, OUT Magazine, The 52nd Annual Grammy Awards, The Tony Awards, red carpet events and music videos.
Lighting Design will be by Tony Award-winner Jeff Croiter, whose numerous Goodspeed credits include Radio Girl, Band Geeks!, The Fabulous Lipitones, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Pirates of Penzance, Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn, Me and My Girl, Happy Days ('07 and '08), The Baker's Wife and O. Henry's Lovers. Jeff has designed over a dozen Broadway productions including Bandstand, Falsettos, Holiday Inn, Disaster!, Penn & Teller On Broadway, Something Rotten!,Mothers and Sons, Peter and the Starcatcher, Newsies The Musical, The Pee-Wee Herman Show and Next Fall, among others.
Sound Design will be by Jay Hilton, who has designed countless productions at both The Goodspeed and The Terris Theatre in Chester. His work has also been heard on Broadway, National Tours and at Regional Theatres from coast to coast.
Music Supervisor for Cyrano will be Olivier Manchon. Mr. Manchon played violin and guitar for the recent Broadway production of Groundhog Day. He is best known for his numerous TV and film scores written with partner Clare Manchon. These include the French film L'échappée by Laetitia Martinoni,Joseph Pulitzer (PBS American Masters,) The Perfect Crime (PBS American Experience,) Colliding Dreams, ABC's Black Box, Uncommon Ground, HBO's Everything is Copy (additional music), American Masters - Ricky Jay: Deceptive Practice, Shut Up And Look (a documentary on Richard Artschwager), PBS's The Human Bodyand The Human Brain.
Casting for Cyrano is by Paul Hardt of StewartWhitley Casting.
Cyrano will run August 3 - September 2, 2018. Curtain times are Wednesdays at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 pm, Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays at 8:00 p.m., Saturdays at 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., and Sundays at 2:00 pm and 6:30 p.m.
Tickets are now on sale starting at $60. All tickets may be purchased through the Box Office (860.873.8668), which opens every day at 10 a.m. Tickets may also be purchased on-line at www.goodspeed.org.