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Light in the Piazza Begins Previews March 17

Lincoln Center Theater (under the direction of André Bishop, Artistic Director, and Bernard Gersten, Executive Producer) will continue its 20th Anniversary season with THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA, a new musical with book by Craig Lucas, music and lyrics by Adam Guettel and direction by Bartlett Sher. Previews for THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA begin Thursday, March 17 at 8pm n the Vivian Beaumont Theater (150 West 65 Street). Opening night is Monday, April 18 at 6:45pm.

THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA, based on the novella by ElizaBeth Spencer, is set in the summer of 1953 and tells the story of a mother and daughter traveling through Italy, the daughter's romance with a handsome, high-spirited Florentine, and the mother's determined efforts to keep the two apart.

THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA's cast of 18 will include Glenn Seven Allen, Michael Berresse, Sarah Uriarte Berry, David Bonanno, David Burnham, Victoria Clark, Patti Cohenour, Beau Gravitte, Laura Griffith, Mark Harelik, Prudence Wright Holmes, Jennifer Hughes, Felicity LaFortune, Catherine LaValle, Michel Moinot, Matthew Morrison, Kelli O'Hara and Joseph Siravo.

THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA will have sets by Michael Yeargan, costumes by Catherine Zuber, lighting by Christopher Akerlind, sound by ACME Sound Partners, orchestrations by Ted Sperling and Adam Guettel, music direction by Ted Sperling and musical staging by Jonathan Butterell.

Playwright Craig Lucas returns to LCT where his play, God's Heart, received its world premiere in the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater. Mr. Lucas' other plays include Reckless (revived earlier this season by the Manhattan Theatre Club), The Dying Gaul, Blue Window. His screenplays include adaptations The Secret Lives of Dentists, Longtime Companion and adaptations of his plays: Prelude to A Kiss, Recless, Blue Window and, most recently, The Dying Gaul, which also marked his directorial debut and opened last month at the Sundance Film Festival.

Adam Guettel wrote the music and lyrics for the musical, Floyd Collins, originally produced at Playwrights Horizons and for Saturn Returns: A Concert, which was originally produced at The Public Theater and recorded by Nonesuch Records under the title Myths and Hymns. He wrote the music for the New York Theatre Workshop production of John Guare's Lydie Breeze and collaborated with Guare on Love's Fire for The Acting Company. He scored the feature documentary, Arguing the World and the CBS documentary Jack. Four of his songs are featured on Audra McDonald's recording Way Back To Paradise.

Bartlett Sher, the Artistic Director of Seattle's Intiman Theatre, won the Callaway Award for his direction of the Theatre For A New Audience (TFANA) production of Shakespeare's Cymbeline, which was the first American Shakespeare production to be seen at the Royal Shakespeare Company. His other New York productions include Moliere's Don Juan, Harley Granville Barker's Waste and Pericles for TFANA, Teresa Rybeck's The Butterfly Collection at Playwrights Horizons, and Mouning Becomes Electra for the New York City Opera

THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA is Lincoln Center Theater's 109th production. In addition to a number of memorable New York, U.S. and world premieres presented during LCT's 20-year history, the Theater also develops new works and encourages emerging artists through play readings, workshops and an annual Directors' Lab. Open Stages, LCT's education program, reaches thousands of NYC public school students with curriculum-related projects, tickets to LCT productions and a Shakespeare collaboration with The Juilliard School. In addition to THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA, LCT is also presenting the world premiere of the new musical, Dessa Rose, with book and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, music by Stephen Flaherty, directed and choreographed by Graciela Danielle, in the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, beginning Thursday, February 17.

THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA will be performed Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 8pm, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm and Sundays at 3pm. (There is no matinee on Saturday, March 19.) Tickets, priced from $65 to $90, are available at the Lincoln Center Theater box office, by calling Tele-Charge at (212) 239-6200 or by visiting

Michael Berresse Broadway: Kiss Me, Kate (received 2000 Tony, Astaire and Outer Critics Circle Award nominations); Chicago (Billy Flynn), Damn Yankees (Joe Hardy), The Gershwin's Fascinating Rhythm, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler on the Roof and Carousel. Off-Broadway: The Cocoanuts (Harvey Yates) and Forever Plaid (Smudge). Also Channon in The Dybbuk (GLTF) and Jerome Black in A Majority of One. Film work includes Steven Spielberg's A.I. and Jodie Foster's Flora Plum.

SARAH URIARTE BERRY Broadway: Taboo, as Eponine in the 10th anniversary cast of Les Misérables, as Belle in Beauty and the Beast and in the City Center Encores! productions of Boys From Syracuse and Tenderloin. She played Julie Jordan in the tour of the Royal National Theatre's production of Carousel and also toured with Petula Clark in Sunset Boulevard. Last summer she participated in the Sondheim Celebration at the Kennedy Center playing Anne in A Little Night Music.

VICTORIA CLARK Broadway: Cabaret (Fraulein Kost), Titanic (Alice Beane), the revival of How to Succeed..., (Smitty), Guys and Dolls (Adelaide), Roundabout's production of A Grand Night for Singing, Sunday in the Park with George. Off-Broadway: Hazel in Marathon Dancing directed by Anne Bogart. Regional: State of Independence by Tina Landau and Ricky Gordon. TV: Detective Analfo on "Law & Order." Films include Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Anastasia, and Tim Robbin's The Cradle Will Rock as Dulce Fox. Victoria has appeared as a guest on Garrison Keillor's "A Prarie Home Companion." She is a graduate of Yale University, a native Texan.

PATTI COHENOUR Broadway: The Sound of Music (Mother Abbess), The Phantom of the Opera (Christine), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Rosa Bud), Big River (Mary Jane Wilkes), and A Doll's Life. City Center's Encores! Series: Adeline in Sweet Adeline. Solo album: To An Isle in the Water, producer Thomas Z. Shepard; released on Sterling Records. Awards: Clarence Derwent Award and Tony nomination for Drood, Drama Desk nominee for Big River and Drood, and the Theater World Award for Big River and La Boheme.

BEAU GRAVITTE Broadway: The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. Off Broadway: Everybody's Ruby, Broadway '68, BAFO (Best and Final Offer), A Backer's Audition. Film: For Better or Worse, Her Father's Heart. Television: "Law & Order: SVU," "Doctor, Doctor," "Hope and Gloria," "Trapper John, MD," "Young Americans," "Cybil," "Caroline in the City," "Diagnosis Murder," "Empty Nest," "Palomino," as well as in daytime dramas, "As the World Turns" and "One Life to Live."

MARK HARELIK Theater includes: The Beard of Avon, Be Aggressive, Old Money, The Hollow Lands, Tartuffe, Search and Destroy, Temptation, The Heidi Chronicles, The Cherry Orchard, and the musical, Elmer Gantry. Films: Election, Jurassic Park III, and Barbarians at the Gate. Television: "Boy Meets World," "Wings," "Seinfeld," "The Practice," "Picket Fences," "Almost Perfect," "Bram and Alice," and many others. He has appeared in his own plays, The Immigrant, The Legacy, and Lost Highway. He wrote the book for the new musical version of The Immigrant, which is based upon his play, and for Hank Williams: Lost Highway.

MATTHEW MORRISON. Broadway: Hairspray (Link Larkin), Footloose, The Rocky Horror Show. Broadway workshops: Starmites, Dirty Dancing. TV/film the upcoming "Once Upon A Mattress," Fresh Step on "The David Letterman Show," "Sex and the City" and the upcoming Marci X.

KELLI O'HARA Broadway: Dracula (Lucy Westenra), Sweet Smell of Success (w/John Lithgow), Sondheim's Follies, Jekyll & Hyde. Off-B'way/regional: My Life With Albertine (Albertine, Playwrights Horizons), The Light in the Piazza (Goodman Theatre). Film: The Dying Gaul. Kelli has sung in concerts at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, the Kennedy Center with Marvin Hamlisch and the National Symphony Orchestra. Training: BM, opera (OCU); Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute. Kelli won the 1998 State Met Opera auditions.

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