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Greif Replaces Eustis as AMTP Boy in the Bubble Director

Northwestern University has announced that award-winning Broadway director Michael Greif has replaced Oskar Eustis as the director of the American Music Theatre Project's (AMTP) fourth new musical, The Boy in the Bubble.

"Boy" is scheduled for production on the University's Evanston campus in late July 2007 at the Ethel M. Barber Theatre.

Eustis, director of the Public Theatre in New York, will continue to do dramaturgy on the show. He has long been associated with new projects for the stage. Eustis commissioned Tony Kushner's groundbreaking Angels in America, and directed the world premiere of the production.

Greif, a Northwestern alumnus, directed Jonathan Larson's long- running Broadway hit Rent, and received an Obie Award and a Tony Award nomination for best director in 1996. He also is the director of Grey Gardens, a new Broadway musical drama. His other Broadway directing credits include the musical comedy Never Gonna Dance at the Broadhurst Theatre. His many other New York City stage directing credits have included Courtney Baron's A Very Common Procedure at MCC Theater and Noah Haidle's Mr. Marmalade at Roundabout Theatre Company.

"We are thrilled to bring Mr. Greif back to his alma mater," said Dominic Missimi, executive director of AMTP. "It is an invaluable experience for our Northwestern students, faculty and staff to be working with one of Broadway's premiere directors."

"A coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of a nostalgic homage to 1976, The Boy in the Bubble tells the tale of Todd Travolta, a fictional character suffering from the real disease of Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID), which has kept him stuck behind a plastic wall, separated from human touch for the first 17 years of his life. When Todd falls in love with the wealthy and high-spirited Gina Jenner, who lives next door, he is forced to choose between his safe existence in bubbled captivity with a chance of a life he's always wanted, but with the risk of imminent death," state press materials.

The new musical is based on the book by Rinne Goff and music by Michael Friedman and Joe Popp with lyrics by all three.

AMTP's previous new musical productions have included Barry Kleinbort and Joseph Thalken's Was, which premiered at Northwestern University's Barber Theatre, Oct. 28 through Nov. 13, 2005; Leslie Arden's The Boys Are Coming Home (which has since been renamed One Step Forward), premiered July 28 through Aug. 13, 2006 at the University's Josephine Louis Theatre. Andrew Lippa's Asphalt Beach, premiered Oct. 27 through Nov. 12, 2006, at the University's Louis Theatre.

For more information about the American Music Theatre Project, visit the AMTP Web site at www.amtp.northwestern.edu/about.html.

Photo of Michael Greif by Linda Lenzi

 


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