FANCY Musical, Inspired by Reba McEntire, Gets NYC Lab

By: Mar. 01, 2017

Margot Astrachan and The Peccadillo Theater Company will present a developmental lab presentation of FANCY, a new musical, on Thursday, March 16 at 4PM and Friday March 17 at 11AM and 3PM at The Westside Theatre, downstairs (407 West 43rd Street). A reception follows each of the presentations.

FANCY is a story of triumph, self-determination, and the power of forgiveness. Inspired by Reba McEntire's hit recording, FANCY is the story of a poor 16-year-old Louisiana girl whose dreams of making music were silenced by her mother's cruelty. "Just be nice to the gentlemen, Fancy, and they'll be nice to you" are the mother's parting words to her daughter when she puts her out of the house and into a life on the streets. But young Fancy is determined to turn her life around and her voice, as if predestined by her name, will not stay silenced. Her dreams of making music set her on a course towards country music superstardom. But fame comes at a price. Can we learn from the past misdeeds of others or are we doomed to continue the cycle?

Featuring a score of chart-topping, award-winning crossover hits by Bobbie Gentry, Reba McEntire, Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash, Bonnie Raitt, Garth Brooks, The Judds, Randy Travis, Carrie Underwood, Ray Charles, Merle Haggard, George Strait, George Michael, Alabama and more, FANCY features a book by Susan DiLallo and Dan Wackerman. Denis Jones (Holiday Inn, Honeymoon in Vegas), directs and choreographs a company featuring Katie Boeck (Spring Awakening), Matt Bogart (Jersey Boys, Aida), Felicia Finley (The Wedding Singer, Mamma Mia!), Jon Patrick Walker (Young Frankenstein, High Fidelity) and Colin Cunliffe (Finding Neverland), Kara Mikula (Irving Berlin's White Christmas), Sydney Morton (American Psycho), T. Oliver Reid (Sunset Boulevard), Blair Ross (Side Show), Sam Sherwood, Kirstin Tucker (A Bronx Tale The Musical), Scott Wakefield (Hands on a Hardbody).

In addition to the title song, FANCY incorporates beloved favorites including "Don't Come Home A Drinkin'," "I Walk the Line," "I Never Promised You A Rose Garden," "Redneck Woman," "I Can't Make You Love Me," "Before He Cheats" and "Hit the Road, Jack."

"Fancy is a new American musical that brings together some of the all-time greatest crossover country songs on stage with some of the theatre's brightest talents," says producer Margot Astrachan. "We're looking forward to this developmental presentation and hope it will inspire producing partners to join us as we look to a production at a major regional theatre company prior to a New York production and national tour."

FANCY features lighting consultation by Philip Rosenberg; costume consultation by Alejo Vietti; Sound consultation by John Shivers; casting by Binder Casting, Jay Binder, CSA; and music direction by Brad Simmons. Richard Frankel and Joe Watson are executive producers.

Industry professionals who wish to attend one of the FANCY presentations, e-mail (and please indicate your preferred date and time.)


Susan DiLallo (Co-Librettist)is a recipient of the covetEd Kleban Award. She wrote book and lyrics to an original musical comedy, Once Upon a Time in New Jersey, which won both a Richard Rodgers Award, given by the American Academy of Arts & Letters (Stephen Sondheim, Chairman), as well as The Global Search for New Musicals Competition, Cardiff, and has been produced worldwide. Her libretto for another musical, Onanov Broadway (formerly Iron Curtain) earned her a Jonathan Larson Award and was a selection of the O'Neill Musical Theatre Conference. Other credits include: book and lyrics to the Mattel/ClearChannel production of Barbie Live! In Fairytopia (based on the best-selling DVD), dir. by Eric Schaeffer; lyrics for That's Life (Outer Critics Circle Nominee); book and lyrics for Pinocchio, A Family Musical About Adoption (Winner, KIDDSTUFFF New Play Competition); revised libretto for the classic musical A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (commissioned by Peccadillo Theatre Company); book and lyrics for Fancy Nancy (commissioned by Vital Theatre Company; CD released by Ghostlight Records); lyrics for The Soprano State: New Jersey's Culture of Corruption (film) directed by Peter LeDonne. She was a humor columnist for The Rye (New York) Record, and has written articles for GLAMOUR, BRIDE'S and COSMOPOLITAN. She has also co-authored books with James Patterson. Her newest novel, Black Dress Affair, is scheduled to be released in September 2017. Member: ASCAP, The Dramatists Guild.

Dan Wackerman (Co-Librettist) is the artistic director of The Peccadillo Theater Company. Some directing credits for Peccadillo include: A Wilder Christmas (2 short one-acts by Thornton Wilder), Clifford Odets' Rocket to the Moon (Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play), William Inge's A Loss of Roses, Sidney Howard's The Silver Cord, Jeffrey Hatcher's Ten Chimneys (NYC premiere), Hart & Kaufman's The Man Who Came to Dinner, the Schwartz/Fields/Abbott/Smith musical A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Outer Critics Circle nomination for Outstanding Musical Revival), Lillian Hellman's Another Part of the Forest, Sylvia Regan's Morning Star, John Murray and Allen Boretz's Room Service, Dorothy Parker & Arnaud d'Usseau's The Ladies of the Corridor, Elmer Rice's Counselor-at-Law (OBIE for Outstanding Direction, Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Revival, Outer Critics Circle nominations for Outstanding Direction & Revival), The Talk of the Town by Ginny Redington & Tom Dawes (MAC nomination). He is a graduate of The Catholic University of America School of Drama (M.F.A. Program).

Denis Jones (Director/Choreographer). Recent credits include the Broadway productions Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn (Studio 54) and Honeymoon in Vegas (Nederlander Theater). Other credits: The Tempest (Shakespeare in the Park), Moonshine: That Hee-Haw Musical (Dallas Theater Center), Paint Your Wagon (City Center Encores!), Nerds (pre-Broadway), The Sound of Music (Chicago Lyric Opera), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, She Loves Me, Johnny Baseball (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Coraline (MCC), Pirates! (Huntington Theatre), 42nd Street, Grease, Spamalot, Chicago (St Louis MUNY), Damn Yankees, Meet Me in St Louis (Paper Mill Playhouse), Elf (5th Ave Theater). Denis was named SDC Callaway Finalist and received a Lucille Lortel nomination for Outstanding Choreography for Signature Theater's Piece of My Heart. Also, Denis has choreographed for "The Kennedy Center Honors," Sex and the City 2 (New Line) and "Rosie Live!" (NBC) as well as national commercials for Staples and Glade. Upcoming projects include Fancy (workshop), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Goodspeed Opera House), Mary Poppins (Paper Mill Playhouse), A Chorus Line (St Louis MUNY), and Honeymoon in Vegas (Marriott Lincolnshire Theatre).

Margot Astrachan (Producer) is a Tony Award winning Commercial Theatrical Producer based in New York. Broadway: the Tony Award winningA Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, The Realistic Joneses, Nice Work If You Can Get It, the revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever; Busker Alley, Ghost the Musical National Tour, and the only staging of Stephen Sondheim's Evening Primrose. She was the American Artistic Director of the Jermyn Street Theatre in London and The Kings Head Theatre in London, and has had over 30 years' experience producing special events for Arts Organizations such as The York Theatre Company, The Theatre Museum, and BritArts of The St. George's Society, which with Jim Dale, featured British and American theatre professionals in readings and panels in New York. She is a director of The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), a director of The Alumni & Friends of The LaGuardia High School for the Arts, The Theater Wing Board of The Kaufman Cultural Center, and a Director of The Episcopal Actors Guild. She is a graduate of CTI (The Commercial Theatre Institute) and is a member of The Association of Performing Arts Presenters, The National Alliance For Musical Theatre, The Broadway League, The Dramatists Guild, the Advisory Board of TRU, British American Business, Inc. and BAFTA. She chairs the Advisory Board of The American Friends of the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

THE Peccadillo Theater Company (Producer), founded in 1994, is an award-winning not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to the rediscovery of classic American theater, particularly those works which, despite their obvious literary and theatrical value, are not regularly revived. Beginning with Eugene O'Neill (generally considered the starting point of modern American theater), Peccadillo concentrates on the era of the so-called well-made play, a period of sparkling wit and sophistication in comedy as well as deepening realism in the drama. It encompasses such diverse and little-known dramas as The Silver Cord by Sidney Howard, Jane by S.N. Behrman, Morning Starby Sylvia Regan, The Shanghai Gesture by John Colton as well as the neglected plays of celebrated authors like Dorothy Parker and John O'Hara. Taken as a whole, this work represents nothing less than the American experience itself in all its contradictions and screwball energy. The mission of The Peccadillo Theater Company is to restore these buried gems to their rightful owner- the American theatergoer. In recent years, Peccadillo has broadened its mission to include original plays and musicals such as Jeffrey Hatcher's Ten Chimneys, Jim Brochu's Zero Hour, and Tom Dawes and Ginny Redington's The Talk of the Town.


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