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LOMBARDI Author Maraniss Feels 'All Joy' About Broadway

Author David Maraniss, whose 1999 book "When Pride Still Mattered: A Life of Vince Lombardi" is the basis for the upcoming Broadway play LOMBARDI, has expressed his surprise that his work was so quickly made into a Broadway play.

Maraniss spoke to the Journal Sentinel: "I say that having a Broadway play from my book is like being a grandparent." "It is all joy, I am not truly responsible for it, but it couldn't exist without me. I am used to saying, only half jokingly, that all of my books are in various stages of not being made into movies, so the swiftness and efficiency with which Pride is being taken to Broadway stuns me. The producers, Tony Ponturo and Fran Kirmser, are terrific, the NFL has bought into the thing, and the cast and crew are what I am most excited about," he adds.

Dan Lauria, who will play Lombardi, left quite an impression on the author.

"He is Lombardi," Maraniss said. "Lauria is a former Marine, played football, coached it, and is an actor's actor. And Judith Light, playing Marie (Lombardi), is a fabulous person and another actor's actor. I haven't seen her do a reading yet, since she was only hired last week, but can't wait."


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Producers Tony Ponturo and Fran Kirmser recently announced additional casting as well as the creative team for LOMBARDI, coming to Broadway's Circle in the Square this fall (previews begin September 23, opening night is October 21). The cast will feature Judith Light as Marie Lombardi, Keith Nobbs as Michael McCormick, Bill Dawes as Paul Hornung, Robert Christopher Riley as Dave Robinson and Chris Sullivan as Jim Taylor.

The creative team is David Korins (Set), Paul Tazewell (Costumes), Howell Binkley (Lighting), ACME Sound Partners/Nevin Steinberg (Sound), and Zach Borovay (Projections). As previously announced, LOMBARDI will star Dan Lauria and will be directed by Tony Award nominee Thomas Kail.

Joining Ponturo and Kirmser as special producing partner is the National Football League, marking the organization's first foray on Broadway. Prior to its Broadway bow, LOMBARDI will run from July 22-28 at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

LOMBARDI, a new American play from Academy Award-winning playwright Eric Simonson, is based on the best-selling biography When Pride Still Mattered: A Life of Vince Lombardi, by Pulitzer Prize winning author David Maraniss.

Judith Light will play Marie Lombardi. She was last seen on the New York stage in Wit. She began her theatrical career in productions including A Doll's House and Herzl (Broadway); Measure for Measure (NY Shakespeare Festival); A Streetcar Named Desire (Toronto); and The Diary of Anne Frank (Los Angeles). She is perhaps best known for her roles on the long-running TV series "Who's the Boss?" and most recently on "Ugly Betty" and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit." She has received two Emmys, two Soapy awards and a Soap Opera Hall of Fame Award for her role as Karen Wolek on "One Life to Live." Judith has also appeared in numerous films for TV, as well as the ABC series "Phenom."

Keith Nobbs will play Michael McCormick. He made his Broadway debut in The Lion in Winter starring Laurence Fishburne and Stockard Channing directed by Michael Mayer. Other New York stage credits include Stupid Kids (dir. by Mayer); Hope is a Thing with Feathers and Free to be...You and Me (both Drama Dept); Four and Fuddy Meers (MTC); Dublin Carol and the world premiere of David Mamet's Romance (Atlantic) He is a member of The Drama Department and the Vineyard Theatre. TV includes HBO's "The Pacific;" "The Black Donnellys;" "The Sopranos;"and "Law & Order." Film credits include Double Whammy, Phone Booth, 25th Hour, and the independent films I Will Avenge You, Iago! and Premium.

Bill Dawes made his Broadway debut in Sex and Longing. His number TV credits include "Law & Order;" "Oz;" "Sex and the City;" "Damages;" and "All My Children." As a standup comic he's a regular at The Laugh Factory in Hollywood and has performed in Iraq for the troops.

Robert Christopher Riley will play Dave Robinson. He made his Broadway debut in the 2008 revival of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof opposite James Earl Jones and Phylicia Rashad, directed by Debbie Allen. Other theatrical credits include Fences (Hartford Stage) and Joe Turner's Come and Gone (Baltimore Center Stage). Television credits: "Medium," "Nurse Jackie," "Royal Pains," "Last of the Ninth," "Victorious," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent." Mr. Riley holds a MFA from Ohio University.

Chris Sullivan will play Jim Taylor. This will mark his Broadway debut. Originally from Sacramento, CA, he joins Lombardi by way of Chicago where he moved six years ago while touring with Rob Becker's Defending the Caveman. He earned his degree in Theater Arts from Loyola Marymount University in L.A. and also studied at The Oxford School of Drama in Oxford, England. After making his Chicago debut in 2008 at The Goodman Theater in The Ballad of Emmett Till he has spent the last two years performing at almost every major theater in the city. Other notable Chicago performances include The Hairy Ape at The Goodman Theater and The Mystery of Irma Vep at The Court Theater.


All tickets are $115 and are now on sale through Telecharge at 212-239-6200 or online at www.telecharge.com.

The show will play on the following schedule:

Week of Sep 23:
Thu Sep 23 at 8 PM
Fri Sep 24 at 8 PM
Sat Sep 25 at 8 PM
Sun Sep 26 DARK

Weeks of Sep 27*, Oct 4, Oct 11, Oct 18**
Mon at 8 PM
Tue at 8 PM
Wed at 2 & 8 PM
Thu at 8 PM
Fri at 8 PM
Sat at 2 & 8 PM
Sundays - DARK
* no matinee on Wed. Sep 29
**Curtain time for opening night October 21 tbd

From Oct 25 onward:
Tuesday at 7 PM
Wed - Sat 8 PM
Wed & Sat at 2 PM
Sun at 3 PM
For more on LOMBARDI, log onto www.lombardibroadway.com,

or follow LOMBARDI on Twitter at www.twitter.com/LombardiPlay.

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