Chase, Keenan-Bolger & More Star in Actors' Fund WORKING
The Zipper Theatre, Ryan Hill and John Johnson are pleased to announce a one-night only, newly adapted concert version of WORKING, the 1978 musical adapted from the acclaimed non-fiction book by Studs Terkel. This one-night only premiere concert event to benefit the Actor's Fund of America will take place on Monday, February 19, 2007 at The Zipper Theatre (336 West 37th Street, between 8 th and 9th Avenues).
WORKING was adapted by Stephen Schwartz from Terkel's best-selling book of interviews with American workers and contains original songs by Stephen Schwartz, Craig Carnelia, Micki Grant, Mary Rodgers and Susan Birkenhead and James Taylor.
WORKING captures the voices of America. Men and women from every walk of life talk and sing, telling us of their likes and dislikes, fears, problems, and happiness's on the job. WORKING creates a rich and unique document that is as simple as conversation, but as subtle and heartfelt as the meaning of our lives.
This new version, adapted from the original by Gordon Greenberg and featuring a six-actor cast, will have its premier at this one-night only event. "I've always been a great fan of this show and wondered how we might expose the workings of the show itself by featuring things like stage manager calls and the backstage crew doing their jobs and by watching fewer actors play more characters, in a Brechtian sense. Ultimately though, it's amazingly authentic and human," says Mr. Greenberg.
WORKING features songs by Stephen Schwartz: ("All the Livelong Day," "It's an Art," "Fathers and Sons,"; Micki Grant ("If I Could've Been," "Lovin' Al" and "Cleaning Women"); Craig Carnelia ("Just a Housewife," "The Mason," "Joe" and "Something to Point To"); James Taylor ("Brother Trucker," "Millwork," "Traffic Jam") and Susan Birkinhead and Mary Rodgers ("Nobody Tells Me How").
The cast of WORKING features Will Chase (High Fidelity), Merle Dandridge (Tarzan), Ed Dixon (the original production of Les Misérables), Roderick Hill (Butley), Celia Keenan-Bolger (Les Misérables, . . . Spelling Bee), and one other cast member to be announced. Steve Marzullo is the music director.
WORKING features lighting design by Jeff Croiter and Jeff Carnevale and sound design by Peter Fitzgerald. WORKING was cast by Tiffany Little-Canfield and Rachel Hoffman, Telsey + Company and the General Manager is Andrew Jones.
Tickets are priced at $55 and $30 and are on sale now through Theatermania.com or by calling 212-352-3101 or 866-811-4111 (toll free).
ABOUT THE ACTORS' FUND OF AMERICA
The Actors' Fund of America , founded in 1882, is the national human service organization helping all entertainment professionals in theatre, television, film, music, opera and dance. The Actors' Fund's broad spectrum of programs designed to address the specific needs of the community includes comprehensive social services, financial assistance, supportive and affordable housing, career counseling, and skilled nursing and assisted living care. Administered from offices in New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago, these programs help people solve problems and make positive changes in their lives. The Fund is always there; helping colleagues in times of need. Please visit www.actorsfund.org to learn more.
CREATIVE TEAM BIOGRAPHIES
Stephen Schwartz ( Book Adaptation, Original Music, Original Lyrics) has contributed music and/or lyrics to Godspell (Tony nomination), Pippin (Tony nomination), The Magic Show, The Baker's Wife, Working (Tony nominations for Book & Score, Drama Desk Award for Direction), Personals , Rags (Tony nomination), Children of Eden and Wicked (Tony nomination). For films, he collaborated with Alan Menken on the scores for the Disney animated features Pocahontas and The Hunchback of Notre Dame and wrote the songs for the DreamWorks animated feature The Prince of Egypt. He has released two CDs of new songs entitled Reluctant Pilgrim and Uncharted Territory available at www.stephenschwartz.com . Mr. Schwartz is also the artistic director of the ASCAP Musical Theatre Workshops and a member of the Dramatists Guild Council. Awards include three Academy Awards, four Grammy Awards, four Drama Desk Awards and a tiny handful of tennis trophies.
Louis (Studs) Terkel (Original Book) the third son of Russian-Jewish parents, was born in the Bronx on 16th May, 1912. During the 1940s Terkel became a familiar voice on radio working as a news commentator and disc jockey. He also acted and appeared on several television programs. In 1949 Terkel began his own television show, Studs' Place, an improvised sitcom where he played himself as a restaurant owner. Terkel wrote a regular jazz column for the Chicago Sunday Times and also acted in various plays including John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men. In 1958 he started his long-running daily radio program on WFMT, the Studs Terkel Show. In the 1960s Terkel became interested in oral history. His first book on the subject, Division Street: America (1967), contained interviews with seventy people who had lived in Chicago. This was followed by Hard Times (1970), which featured interviews with Americans talking about their experiences of the Depression, and Working (1974), an account of people's working lives. Other books in the same style by Terkel include American Dreams: Lost and Found (1980), the Pulitzer Prize winning The Good War (1985), The Great Divide (1988), Race (1992), Coming of Age (1995), Talking to Myself: A Memoir of My Times (1995), My American Century (1998), American Dreams: Lost and Found (1999). His latest book, Will the Circle be Unbroken? (2001), is about death. Terkel has been described as a historian and a sociologist but he prefers to call himself a "guerrilla journalist with a tape recorder."
Gordon Greenberg (Director) directed the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway revival of Jacques Brel Is Alive And Well And Living In Paris, currently playing at the Zipper Theatre, and the new Caribbean adaptation of Pirates . . . (created with Nell Benjamin and John McDaniel) for Goodspeed and Paper Mill. Other directing credits include the acclaimed revival of The Baker's Wife by Stephen Schwartz and Joe Stein at Goodspeed and Paper Mill, Breaking Up is Hard To Do by Neil Sedaka, Erik Jackson and Ben Winters (Harbor Entertainment, Capital Rep., Actors Playhouse), Cam Jansen by Larry O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin (Lambs Theatre), Slut (James Hammerstein Productions, ATA Theatre), Oh Henry's Lovers (Goodspeed Musicals), The Theory of Three (New York Stage and Film), the U.S. National Tour of Peter Pan (Big League Theatricals); Floyd Collins (Signature Theatre), Jacques Brel... and The Song Of Singapore (Capital Rep.), Danny & Faye starring Tovah Feldshuh (Daryl Roth Productions), The Velvet Vise starring Janeane Garafalo (New York Performance Works), An Immaculate Misconception (Hampstead New End Theatre; London, UK), Of Blessed Memory (Kings Head Theatre; London, UK), Jesus Christ, Superstar starring Billy Porter and Emily Skinner (Helen Hayes Performing Arts Center), Joseph... starring Andrea McArdle (Helen Hayes Performing Arts Center), Evita (HHPAC and Ogunquit Playhouse), Henry, Sweet Henry (York Theatre's Musicals In Mufti), The Mystery of King Tut (Theatreworks USA), and the Broadway Divas tours of Australia, Brazil, Canada and the U.S. Current projects include The Ben Folds Project (The Producing Office) and Edges by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul for Capital Rep. For television, he has directed many commercials and industrials including Rolex, Lever, Prodigy, Wisk, Court TV and Broadway.Com. He has served as Artistic Director of The Jewish Theatre of Los Angeles, Creative Producer for J. Walter Thompson, Artistic Associate at Musical Theatre Works and, currently, Curator for The Ars Nova Theatre and Artistic Director for Broadway Classroom ( www.broadwayclassroom.com.) He studied at London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, Stanford University, NYU Film School, and the Lincoln Center Theatre Director's Lab.
Steve Marzullo (Music Direction) is currently the associate conductor for Mamma Mia! on Broadway. He was the musical director for Once on this Island at Playwrights Horizons, on Broadway and for the reunion concert. Steve was the musical director and did the vocal arrangements for the pre-Broadway Paper Mill Playhouse production of Paper Moon. Also on Broadway, Steve has served as associate conductor for Seussical, Grease (revival), and Sweeney Todd (first revival). Regional and tour credits include being the musical director for I Do! I Do! (featuring Harry Groener and Diana Canova), Tell Me On a Sunday (starring Alice Ripley), associate conductor for Song and Dance with (Melissa Manchester) and the pianist for Nude Nude Totally Nude with Andrea Martin. As a composer, Steve has contributed songs to the scores of the Off-Broadway shows The Audience and Songs From An Unmade Bed . He has written songs for Audra MacDonald which include "I Hid My Love" (featured on Nonesuch Records), "Some Days" (seen on PBS Special and the Donmar Warehouse Video) and "Burning the Sauce" (from The Seven Deadly Sins). He also wrote incidental music for The Irish Curse, a presentation at the 2005 Fringe Festival. Steve received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music and has studied piano with Dora Zaslavsky.
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