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Casting and Additional Dates Announced for New Doctor Dolittle Tour; Dee Hoty to Co-Star

Confirming previous reports that she would play opposite nine-time Tony Award-winner Tommy Tune in the animal-friendly musical, Dee Hoty has signed on to the revised national tour of Doctor Dolittle. Other casting for the show has also been completed.

Hoty will play Emma Fairfax, the love interest of Doctor Dolittle, in the show, which will kick off its new national tour on January 17th, 2006, at the Hobby Center in Houston; it will circulate the country through July. Tune, who helms as well as stars in the show, previously directed Hoty in The Will Rogers Follies and The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public.

In addition, twelve year old newcomer Aaron Burr was handpicked by Tommy Tune to play Chee-Chee the chimpanzee. This past summer, Burr recently won the Greatest Dancer competition on ABC's "Good Morning America," judged by Tune and a handful of other celebrity judges.
Joel Blum, Amanda Braddock, Jessica Leigh Brown, Kristin Dawn Calgaro, Matthew Crowle, Sandi DeGeorge, Jack Doyle, Mike Erickson, Joe Jackson, Lesley M. Klose, Scott Leiendecker, Allan Mangasser, Amanda Rose, Jonathan Sandler, Sarah Stiles, Sally Ann Swarm, Elisa Van Duyne, David F.M. Vaughn, Erin Webley, Steven Wenslawski and Jessica Wu, comprise the rest of the cast, while Adam Cates and Denise Payne are the swings. 

Based on the beloved 1967 film that starred Rex Harrison and on The Doctor Dolittle Stories by Hugh Lofting, the musical will star Tune in the title role of the veterinarian who talks to the animals (portrayed by puppets in the show). Lee Tannen has added revisions tailored to Tune to Leslie Bricusse's book; Bricusse (Stop the World, I Want to Get Off, Jekyll & Hyde) also penned the music and lyrics for the show. Doctor Dolittle's score includes the Academy Award-winning song "Talk to the Animals," as well as "When I Look in Your Eyes," "I've Never Seen Anything Like It" and others. There have also been reports of a possible Broadway transfer for the musical. For the tour, orchestrations are being done by Larry Blank, with dance and incidental music by Gordon Harrell.

Doctor Dolittle will be produced by
Pittsburgh CLO, Nederlander Presentations, Inc., Independent Presenters Network and Columbia Artists Theatricals. Prior to Tune's involvement, the Doctor Dolittle tour had starred Tom Hewitt, Nancy Anderson, Tony Yazbeck, Ed Dixon and others. Glenn Casale directed, with Tony Award-winner Rob Ashford as choreographer.

The show, which will be choreographed by Patti Colombo (Peter Pan), will feature costumes by Ann Hould-Ward (Beauty and the Beast) and Dona Granata, with set design by Kenneth Foy (Gypsy), lights by Ken Billington (Chicago), and puppet designs by Michael Curry (The Lion King). Michael Biagi will serve as the musical director. 

Performances begin on January 17, 2006 (through the 29th) at the Hobby Center in Houston. Following the 2-week Houston engagement, Dr. Dolittle will play: The Buell Theater in Denver (January 31–February 12); The Pantages in Los Angeles (February 21–March 5); the Civic Theatre in San Diego (March 7–12); the Civic Theatre in Tucson (March 14-19); Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa (March 21-April 2); DuPont Theatre in Wilmington (April 7-16); the Palace Theatre in Cleveland (April 18-30); Providence Performing Arts Center (May 2-7); Memorial Auditorium in Raleigh (May 9-14); the Fox Theatre in St. Louis (May 16-28); Proctor's Theater in Schenectady (May 31-June 4); DeVos Performance Hall in Grand Rapids (June 6-11); Community Center Theater in Sacramento (June 13-25); Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville, AR (June 27-July 2); and the Cadillac Palace Theatre in Chicago (July 18-30). Additional summer and fall engagements will be announced at a later date. 

Hoty is a three-time Tony-nominee--for Footloose, The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public and The Will Rogers Follies. Other Broadway credits include Mamma Mia!, City of Angels, Me and My Girl and Shakespeare's Cabaret. Recently, Hoty has played several stints on the regional theatre circuit; she starred in the title role of Mame at the St. Louis MUNY, Desiree in the Pittsburgh CLO's A Little Night Music and Reno Sweeney in Anything Goes at Theatre Under the Stars in Houston.

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