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Photos: Florence Lacey Opens Signature's SUNSET BLVD. Tonight, 12/7

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Virginia's Tony Award-winning Signature Theatre begins its run of the legendary Hollywood musical Sunset Boulevard this evening, December 7th - and runs through February 13, 2011. Headlining the production - the area's first staging of the Tony Award-winning musical - is Broadway's Florence Lacey (Evita; Hello Dolly!; Signature's Follies) as the tragic silent film star Norma Desmond. Ms. Lacey is complemented by D.B. Bonds (The Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables, Signature's The Visit) as Joe, Susan Derry (Wonderful Town) as Betty, and Ed Dixon (The Iceman Cometh, The Three Musketeers) as Max von Mayerling. Three time Helen Hayes Award winner J. Fred Shiffman is Sheldrake and Washington favorite Harry A. Winter is Cecil B. DeMille.

The new production is directed by Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer (Million Dollar Quartet) and music director and conductor Jon Kalbflesich leads the 20-member orchestra. The creative team that masterminded Signature's hit production of Chess has collaborated here on Sunset Boulevard: Karma Camp (choreography), Daniel Conway (sets), Kathleen Geldard (costumes), and Matt Rowe (sound). Howard Binkley is the lighting designer.

The Sunset Boulevard ensemble features Sandy Bainum, Madeline Botteri, Matt Conner, William Diggle, Rebecca Fale, Gia Mora, Jake Odmark, Kirsten Riegler, Stephen Gregory Smith, Sean Thompson, Matthew Wojtal, and Kara Tameika Watkins.

Director Eric Schaeffer stated, "I'm thrilled to have Flo Lacey and D.B. Bonds leading this amazing group of actors bringing Signature's intimate Sunset Boulevard to life. This terrific company along with our 20-piece orchestra in our 276-seat MAX Theatre promises to be a musical theater experience like no other. This will be a Sunset Boulevard not to miss!"

Single tickets to Sunset Boulevard go on sale today, September 1. Tickets range in price from $59 - $85 and are available by calling Ticketmaster at (703) 573-SEAT (7328) or visiting www.signature-theatre.org. Group discounts are available for parties of ten or more by contacting Bethany Shannon at shannonb@signature-theatre.org or by calling (571) 527-1831. For more information please visit www.signature-theatre.org.

Based on the 1950s film noir directed by Billy Wilder, with book and lyrics by Don Black and Christopher Hampton, Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard is one of the greatest Hollywood tales ever told on the musical stage. Silent film star Norma Desmond's infamous line "All right, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up" is the stuff of Hollywood legend. In the glamorous film world of Los Angeles where youth and beauty were all, what happens when the lights dim and the audiences disappear? With such stunning songs as "With One Look," "As If We Never Said Goodbye" and "Perfect Year," Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard is a lush romantic tragedy of Hollywood proportions.

Performances of Sunset Boulevard run from December 7, 2010 to February 13, 2011. Show times are Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 7:30 pm, Thursdays and Fridays at 8:00 pm, Saturdays at 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm, and Sundays at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm. There are no performances of Sunset Boulevard on Saturday, December 11 at 2:00 pm, Tuesday, December 14, or on Christmas Day. Signature is presenting a special 2:00 pm performance on Christmas Eve.

Photo Credit: Scott Suchman


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