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Grové Stars in Goodspeed Boy Friend, July 8-Sept 18

Jessica Grové will star in The Boy Friend at Goodspeed Opera House, following in the footsteps of Julie Andrews, who originated the role of Polly in 1954 and will direct the show after having done so for the 2003 Bay Street Theatre production.

The Boy Friend will play at Goodspeed in East Haddam, CT from July 8th to September 18th of 2005 and tour a dozen cities in January and February of 2006. The show will be produced by Goodspeed Musicals and be sponsored by none other than Target. The tour of the breezy musical will kick off at the Du Pont Theatre in Wilmington, DE.  Revisions to the show's book are currently being considered.

In addition to Grové, Bethe B. Austin will play Hortense, with Paul Carlin as Percival, Andrea Chamberlain as Maisie, Drew Eshelman as Lord Brockhurst, Rick Faugno as Bobby Van Husen, Nancy Hess as Madame Dubonnet, Sean Palmer as Tony, and Darcy Pulliam as Lady Brockhurst.  John DeLuca will provide the choreography (as he did for the Bay Street production), with scenic and costume design by Tony Walton (the ex-husband of Andrews, and also a Bay Street alum), lighting design by Richard Pilbrow, Rachel Navarro as co-costume designer and Kelly Hanson as associate scenic designer.  Michael O'Flaherty will serve as musical director in his 14th year at Goodspeed, and F. Wade Russo will be the assistant music director with  Dan DeLange providing the orchestrations.  Michael P. Price will produce the show at Goodspeed.

Grové received a Jefferson nomination for her role as Dorothy in Radio City Entertainment's The Wizard of Oz.  She portrayed another Dorothy in Thoroughly Modern Millie, and also appeared as Eponine in Les MiserablesRecently, she played the beautiful flame of F. Scott Fitzgerald in the off-Broadway musical The Pursuit of Persephone. 

Andrews, of course, is the legendary soprano who starred in My Fair Lady, Camelot and Victor/Victoria on Broadway, and Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, Victor/Victoria (the original version), 10, Darling Lili and many other films.

The Boy Friend's book, music and lyrics are by Sandy Wilson (who followed up his West End and Broadway hit with a follow-up spoof of 30's musicals called Divorce Me, Darling). Goodspeed has described the plot of the show as "a jazzy, romantic spoof of 1920s musical comedy. Amidst happy flappers and perfect young ladies, romance blooms on the French Riviera as an English heiress suddenly falls for the delivery boy and professes her love at the Grand Ball. A family favorite, this joyful comedy sparkles and will leave you floating on air."

More info can be found at Goodspeed's website--http://www.goodspeed.org

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