Christian Borle, Krysta Rodriguez, & Ephraim Sykes Will Lead Kennedy Center's BYE BYE BIRDIE

Bye Bye Birdie will feature the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra.

By: Feb. 20, 2024
Christian Borle, Krysta Rodriguez, & Ephraim Sykes Will Lead Kennedy Center's BYE BYE BIRDIE
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Casting has been announced for  The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts's Broadway Center Stage production of Bye Bye Birdie. The production will star two-time Tony Award winner Christian Borle (Some Like It Hot, Something Rotten!) as Albert Peterson, Krysta Rodriguez (Into the Woods, Spring Awakening) as Rosie Alvarez, and Tony Award nominee Ephraim Sykes (Ain’t Too Proud, NBC’s Hairspray Live!) as Conrad Birdie.

Additional casting will be announced at a later date.

The production will be directed by Marc Bruni (Beautiful, the Kennedy Center’s Guys and Dolls, The Music Man, and How to Succeed…), with choreography by Denis Jones (Tootsie, The Kennedy Center’s Guys and Dolls). 

“After a four year postponement from March 2020, what a thrill it is to finally be producing the joyous Bye Bye Birdie for Broadway Center Stage! With Marc Bruni and Denis Jones—who did such great work with our Guys and Dolls in 2022—alongside this starry Broadway cast, the show could not be in the better hands,” said Jeffrey Finn, Broadway Center Stage Artistic Director and Kennedy Center Vice President and Executive Producer of Theater.

In this ebullient winner of four Tony Awards®, teen idol Conrad Birdie is drafted into the Army, but before he leaves, he’ll perform a new song on The Ed Sullivan Show and give one last kiss to a lucky fan. Bye Bye Birdie features a hilarious script by Tony Award® winner Michael Stewart (Hello, Dolly!) and a score with more pop than a pack of bubble gum by Tony Award®–winning composer Charles Strouse (Annie) and Tony Award®–winning lyricist Lee Adams (Applause).

The Broadway Center Stage series is now in its fifth season. Its hit production of Monty Python’s SPAMALOT is currently playing on Broadway at The St. James Theater.

About The Cast

Christian Borle is a two-time Tony Award®-winning actor/director. Borle won the Tony Award® for Best Featured Actor in a Musical as Shakespeare in Something Rotten (Drama Desk Award) and Best Featured Actor in a Play as Black Stache in Peter and the Starcatcher (Drama Desk nom.). Additional Broadway credits: Footloose, Jesus Christ Superstar, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Amour, Spamalot (Drama Desk nom.), Mary Poppins, Legally Blonde (Tony® and Drama Desk noms.), Falsettos (Tony® nom.), and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He most recently starred as Joe/Josephine in Broadway's Some Like it Hot (Tony® nom.). He also starred as Orin Scrivello in Little Shop of Horrors, for which he received the Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical. On TV, Borle has appeared in Masters Of Sex, Gilmore Girls, Elementary, Younger, Lifesaver, NBC’s Peter Pan Live, and NBC’s The Sound of Music Live. Borle played a recurring role on The Good Wife and received across-the-board praise as Tom on Smash. Borle also appeared in Michael Mann’s feature Blackhat opposite Chris Hemsworth and Viola Davis, and The Bounty Hunter with Jennifer Aniston. Directing: Popcorn Falls (Davenport Theater), Footloose (The MUNY). Playwriting: additional material for Some Like It Hot, Hammered: A Thor & Loki Play (go to marvelspotlightplays.com).

Krysta Rodriguez starred as Cinderella in the Broadway revival of Into the Woods and opposite Jeremy Pope and Paul Bettany in The Collaboration for MTC. Other Broadway credits include: Spring Awakening (Deaf West Revival + OBC), First Date, The Addams Family, In the Heights, A Chorus Line, Good Vibrations. On television, Rodriguez starred in Netflix’s Halston as Liza Minnelli and is known for her work in Smash (NBC), Daybreak (Netflix), Trial & Error (NBC), Quantico (ABC), Younger (Paramount+), The Mysteries of Laura (NBC), Gossip Girl (CW) and opposite RuPaul in How the Bitch Stole Christmas. Rodriguez starred as Megara in the world premiere of Disney’s Hercules (Public Works at the Delacorte Theater) as well as in Theresa Rebeck’s Seared (MCC; Outer Critics Circle honoree), West Side Story (Anita; The Kennedy Center), A Chorus Line (Diana; Hollywood Bowl), and What We’re Up Against (The Women’s Project).

Ephraim Sykes was nominated for a Tony®, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League Awards for his performance as David Ruffin in Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations. Other Broadway credits include: Hamilton, Motown The Musical, Newsies, Memphis, and The Little Mermaid. Off-Broadway, Sykes co-starred in Black No More (The New Group, Audelco Award winner) and Rent (New World Stages). On screen, Sykes was seen in Kathryn Bigelow’s Detroit as well as the HBO series Vinyl, Luke Cage (Marvel/Netflix), Crisis in Six Scenes (Amazon), Russian Doll (Netflix), and in the NBC live broadcast of Hairspray Live! opposite Ariana Grande.  

About Bye Bye Birdie

The original 1960 Tony Award-winning Broadway musical starred Dick Van Dyke as Albert Peterson (earning Van Dyke a Tony) and Chita Rivera as Rosie (earning Rivera a Tony nomination). The book was by Michael Stewart, lyrics by Lee Adams and music by Charles Strouse.

"Bye Bye Birdie" was also a 1963 Golden Globe-nominated feature film that starred Van Dyke and Janet Leigh. Featured in the movie was Ann-Margret as Kim MacAfee, a role that would propel her to stardom.

Set at the height of rock 'n' roll, "Bye Bye Birdie" takes us to Sweet Apple, Ohio, where hip-thrusting music heartthrob Conrad Birdie is scheduled to give a lucky Sweet Apple lady "One Last Kiss" before being drafted into the Army. Conrad's rock 'n' roll ways send the small town reeling, giving the teens Birdie fever, shocking the parents with moral indignation, and placing songwriter/agent Albert Peterson along with his savvy sweetheart, Rosie, right in the thick of things. The story was inspired by the incredible popularity of Elvis Presley and his induction into the Army in 1957.

How To Get Tickets

The production runs from June 7th through June 15th, 2024.

Tickets for Bye Bye Birdie go on sale to Kennedy Center Members tomorrow and to the public on February 22 via the Kennedy Center website or by calling 202-467-4600. 




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