Twenty-Four to Make Broadway Debuts as 'GREAT COMET' Announces Complete Cast
Complete casting has been announced for the new musical NATASHA, PIERRE & THE GREAT COMET OF 1812, featuring the Broadway debuts of 24 cast and creative team members, including Josh Groban* as 'Pierre' and Denée Benton* as 'Natasha.'
Created by Dave Malloy* (Ghost Quartet, Preludes) and directed by Rachel Chavkin* (Hadestown, Artistic Director of The TEAM) - also making their Broadway debuts - THE GREAT COMET will blaze into Broadway's Imperial Theatre (249 West 45th Street) beginning October 18, with opening night set for Monday, November 14, 2016.
Led by Groban and Benton, the cast of THE GREAT COMET will include Brittain Ashford* as 'Sonya,' Gelsey Bell* as 'Princess Mary,' Nicholas Belton as 'Bolkonsky/Andrey,' Nick Choksi* as 'Dolokhov,' Amber Gray* as 'Helene,' Grace McLean* as 'Marya D,' Paul Pinto* as 'Balaga,' Scott Stangland as 'Pierre' (standby), and Lucas Steele as 'Anatole.'
The ensemble includes Sumayya Ali, Courtney Bassett*, Josh Canfield, Ken Clark*, Erica Dorfler, Lulu Fall, Ashley Pérez Flanagan*, Paloma Garcia-Lee, Nick Gaswirth, Alex Gibson*, Billy Joe Kiessling*, Mary Spencer Knapp*, Reed Luplau, Brandt Martinez, Andrew Mayer*, Azudi Onyejekwe, Pearl Rhein*, Heath Saunders*, Ani Taj*, Cathryn Wake*, Katrina Yaukey, and Lauren Zakrin.
THE GREAT COMET features choreography by Sam Pinkleton, set design by Mimi Lien*, costume design by Tony Award winner Paloma Young, lighting design by Bradley King*, sound design by Nicholas Pope, music supervision by Sonny Paladino, musical direction by Or Matias*, casting by Stewart/Whitley, and production stage management by Karyn Meek.
(*-denotes Broadway debut)
THE GREAT COMET is a theatrical experience like no other. Malloy's inspired adaptation of a 70-page slice of War and Peace puts audiences just inches away from Tolstoy's brash young lovers, as they light up Moscow in an epic tale of romance and passion.
The Original Off Broadway Cast Recording can be purchased on iTunes.
THE GREAT COMET recently played a limited engagement at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge where its innovative design was expanded to bring the show's signature staging to a traditional proscenium-style theatre.
THE GREAT COMET has been showered with rave reviews and a host of accolades, including the 2013 Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theater, a Special Citation from the OBIE Awards, five Drama Desk Award Nominations, two Drama League Award nominations, a Henry Hewes Design Award, and the Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Outstanding New Musical.
The 2016 production of THE GREAT COMET at American Repertory Theater won eight Annual Independent Reviewers of New England (IRNE) Awards including New Play, Musical, Director, Set Design, Costume Design, Lighting Design, Sound Design, and Actor in a Musical; as well as the Elliot Norton Awards for Outstanding Musical Production, Outstanding Design, and Outstanding Director.
THE GREAT COMET was originally commissioned and developed at Ars Nova in NYC where it had its world premiere in the fall of 2012, and was soon-after transferred to a custom-built venue in the Meatpacking District for the summer of 2013. The show became a sensation and the entire venue was transferred to the Theater District where it continued its run into the spring of 2014.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Josh Groban (Pierre). Possessing one of the most outstanding and instantly recognizable voices in music, singer, songwriter, and actor Josh Groban has entertained fans across the globe with his multi-platinum albums and DVDs (over 35 million sold worldwide), electrifying live performances, and comedic film and television appearances. The 35-year-old Los Angeles native is the only artist who has had two albums appear on the Top 20 Best-Selling Albums list of the past decade, according toBillboard. He has appeared in the feature films Crazy, Stupid, Love, Coffee Town, and Muppets Most Wanted, as well as on CBS' Life In Pieces, NBC's The Office, FX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and CBS' The Crazy Ones. Groban has released seven studio albums, 2001's self-titled double-platinum debut, 2003's multi-platinum Closer, 2006's double-platinum Awake, 2007's quadruple-platinum Grammy-nominated Noel, 2010's platinum Illuminations, and 2013's All That Echoes, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart, giving Groban his first No. 1 debut and third chart-topper. The album earned Groban some of his best reviews to date. In April 2015, Groban released Stages, a collection of some of the greatest songs from musical theater. The album was nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album. In February 2016 Groban released a CD/DVD package, entitled Stages Live, featuring performances recorded at the historic Los Angeles Theater in downtown L.A. for his all-new PBS special Josh Groban: Stages Live. He is currently on an extensive North American tour to support Stages, entitled "Josh Groban: On Stage." An active arts education philanthropist and advocate, Groban is a member of Americans for the Arts Artists Committee and Groban's Find Your Light Foundation helps enrich the lives of young people through arts, education, and cultural awareness.
DENÉE BENTON (Natasha) can next be seen making her Broadway debut opposite Josh Groban, in the musical Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 at the Imperial Theatre. She also starred as 'Nabulungi' in the West End and US National Tour of The Book of Mormon. Her regional credits include Annie, Sunset Boulevard, and Fiddler On The Roof at Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera. Benton can currently be seen in Season 2 of Lifetime's hit television series, "UnREAL" as Ruby. She is a 2014 graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and currently resides in New York.
Brittain Ashford (Sonya) will make her Broadway debut in The Great Comet in the role she originated at Ars Nova and received a Lucile Lortel nomination for during its run at Kazino. She's also appeared in Dave Malloy's Ghost Quartet (Bushwick Starr, The Heath, Curran: Under Construction, A.R.T.) and fronts her own band, Prairie Empire.
Gelsey Bell (Princess Mary), is a singer, songwriter, and scholar. Described by the New York Times as a "winning soprano" and the "future of experimental vocalism," her multi-disciplinary work has been presented internationally. She is a member of thingNY and Varispeed, and Dave Malloy's Ghost Quartet, and has a PhD from NYU in performance studies. www.gelseybell.com
Nicholas Belton (Bolkonsky/Andrey). Broadway: Hair. Tours: Wicked (Chicago), Evita, Hair. Off-Broadway: CBS Upfronts - Carnegie Hall, Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 - Kazino & A.R.T., My Life With Albertine - Playwrights Horizons, See Rock City & Other Destinations - Transport Group. Regional: Long Wharf, Court Theatre, Goodman Theatre, PCLO, Chicago Shakes, Idaho Shakes. Check out SundayTheory.com - my lifestyle blog and shop! Big love to my real life fiancée, my family, and CTG. @nicholasbelton
Nick Choksi (Dolokhov). NY Theater: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, Ars Nova/Kazino/A.R.T; King Tot, D Deb Debbie Deborah, Clubbed Thumb; God Bless You Mr. Rosewater, Encores!; Brooklynite!, Vineyard; Bunty Berman Presents, New Group (Lortel Nomination); Invasion!, The Flea; Annie Baker's Practice, The Atlantic; Rajiv Joseph's Huck and Holden, Cherry Lane Theatre; A Food Odyssey, Invisible Dog (also composed), Those Lost Boys, Ars Nova (creator, co-composer). Regional: Love's Labor's Lost, RSC/Shakespeare Theater D.C.; Wind In The Willows, Two River. Film/TV: The Passing Season (upcoming), Home, Violet & Daisy, "Happyish", "Royal Pains", "L&O:CI", "The Sopranos", "The Electric Company", "One Life To Life" (recurring). Training: Juilliard. www.nickchoksi.com
Amber Gray (Helene) has appeared in Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Kazino, Ars Nova), Hadestown (New York Theatre Workshop), Iphigenia in Aulis (CSC), Oklahoma! (Bard SummerScape), An Octoroon (Theatre for a New Audience, Soho Rep, P.S.122), Taylor Mac's A 24 Decade History of Popular Music: 1900's-1950's (New York Live Arts with Under the Radar), The TEAM's Mission Drift (London's National, P.S.122's COIL, Edinburgh's Traverse, etc), and ongoing with Reverend Billy and The Church of Stop Shopping. M.F.A: NYU Graduate Acting.
Grace McLean (Marya D). Off Broadway: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, Kazino; Brooklynite, Vineyard Theatre; Bedbugs!!!, Arclight; The World is Round, BAM; Sleep No More, The McKittrick Hotel; Twelve Ophelias, Woodshed Collective. Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, A.R.T.; Pump Boys and Dinettes, Weston Playhouse; La MaMa Cantata, Spoleto, Italy; Zagreb, Croatia; Belgrade, Serbia; From The Fire (Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2011, MTM Best New Musical); The Last Goodbye, Williamstown Theater Festival. Grace McLean & Them Apples performed in both the 2015 and 2016 Lincoln Center American Songbook seasons and in April 2015 traveled to Pakistan on a US State Department sponsored tour. Original music available on iTunes. www.gracemclean.com
Paul Pinto (Balaga) is a composer, writer and multi-disciplinary performer. He's a founder of experimental music ensembles thingNY and Varispeed. An album of his poetic compositions, minis/Trajectories will be released in September 2016, and he's writing a psychedelic new electronic opera calledThomas Paine in Violence for the HERE Arts Center for November 2017. pfpinto.com
Scott Stangland (Pierre standby) is a New York-based actor and musician. Select theatre: Once (Broadway); Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812 (A.R.T.); The Wheel (Steppenwolf Theatre). Select TV/film: Vinyl (HBO), Crisis, Chicago Fire (NBC), Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story (TNT); Contagion, and End of the Tour. Scott received his MFA from The Theatre Conservatory at Roosevelt University. Scott also plays in the band Youth in a Roman Field. www.scottstangland.com
Lucas Steele (Anatole) Broadway: The Threepenny Opera. Off-Broadway: has originated numerous leading roles including Myths and Hymns at Prospect Theater Company, The Kid at The New Group, and Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812 for which he received a Lucille Lortel award for his portrayal of Anatole Kuragin. @TheLucasSteele
Sumayya Ali (Ensemble/Violin) Broadway: Porgy and Bess, Ragtime (Revival). Off Broadway: Ragtime, Lincoln Center; Lost in the Stars, City Center; Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, (A.R.T.); Master Class (Kennedy Center); Film/TV: Spike Lee's Red Hook Summer; Easter Mysteries; new webseries Being Iman created and written by Sumayya coming out soon!
Courtney Bassett (Ensemble). Broadway debut! Off Broadway: Bedbugs!!! Regional favorites: American Rep: The Great Comet, City Theatre, PA: Pop!, Pittsburgh CLO."Somewhere" singer for NYC Ballet's West Side Story Suite. Indie pop band Starbird and the Phoenix. Gratitude: Family, Z, J, Maria, and Sheri. Thank you to The Great Comet tribe for this beautiful pretend. courtneybassett.com
Josh Canfield (Ensemble). Broadway: Doctor Zhivago ("Liberius", Broadway Theatre); Off-Broadway: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 ("Antaole", Kazino); Favorite Regional: Anything Goes ("Billy Crocker", Ogunquit Playhouse, Gateway Theatre), Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812 (Ensemble, Anatole u/s, American Repertory Theatre), Godspell ("Jesus," Actors Playhouse), Hair ("Claude", English Theatre, Germany), Sail Away ("Barnaby Slade", Sadler's Wells, London). TV: CBS' "Survivor: San Juan Del Sur". Thanks to my agent, my friends, and my family. "Kronk, it's time." AEA. Instagram: @joshdcanfield, Twitter: @joshuacanfield, Snapchat: finntaff .
Ken Clark (Ensemble/Guitar) Broadway debut. Off-Broadway: The Great Comet, Kazino; February House, The Public. Tour: La Cage aux Folles (1st national). Regional: Moonshine (Bucky Jr), Dallas Theater Center; Camelot (Arthur), Drury Lane Theater; Rent (Roger), Syracuse Stage; Urinetown (Bobby), Connecticut Rep; Sweeney Todd (Anthony), The Gateway. TV: "House of Cards."
Erica Dorfler (Ensemble). Being a part of The Great Comet is a dream-the realization of over a decade of professional work. A very special thank you to the entire team, crew and my fellow gypsies. Shout-outs: The Mine, Sirensong Entertainment and Stewart/Whitley. Love to my family, friends and, especially, Brian. Credits...Broadway: The Book of Mormon, Memphis, Scandalous, Baby It's You!. Off-Broadway: Avenue Q, Forbidden Broadway, Silk Stockings (York Theater). Tours: Mamma Mia!, Rent. Regional/NYC: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (A.R.T.), Here's Hoover (Abrons Arts Center), Bull Durham (Alliance Theater). TV: "The Family", "Comedians in Cars". www.ericadorfler.com.
Lulu Fall (Ensemble). Broadway, National Tour: Hair (Ensemble). Off-Broadway: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Ensemble); Pretty Filthy ("Brown Sugar"); Hadestown (Fate). Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (ART, Cambridge); August Rush (Developmental Lab, NY); 15 Minutes (Workshop, NYSAF); Annie Golden BounTy Hunter (Workshop, NY); Smokey Joe's Café (Capital Repertory Theatre, Albany); Crowns (Arena Stage, Washington, DC); Passing Strange (Studio Theatre, Washington, DC). Featured music performances: Jazz Re:freshed, Performer (London); American Songbook Program, Performer (Smithsonian); Langnau Jazz Nights Festival, Performer (Switzerland). www.lulufall.com
ASHLEY PÉREZ FLANAGAN (Ensemble). Broadway Debut! NY: Hadestown (NYTW), Orpheus and Eurydice Are...In Love (Ars Nova), In Love With Jobim (York Theatre) Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (A.R.T), Prometheus Bound (A.R.T), Evita, West Side Story, Sound of Music, Footloose. Concerts: Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Joe's Pub. Member of @moondrunkband.
Paloma Garcia-Lee (Swing/Dance Captain) is honored to join The Great Comet family! Broadway: On The Town, Nice Work If You Can Get It, The Phantom of the Opera. Theater: American Dance Machine, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story. TV: The Best Time Ever, The Tony Awards, The Today Show. Immeasurable love and thanks to my loving parents, my dearest friends, the brilliant THE GREAT COMET creative team, CTG, Benton, and Howard and Janet. Dedicated to love of my life- my husband Paul. Visit: www.palomagarcialee.com - Follow: @palomagarcialee
Nick Gaswirth (Ensemble). Broadway/Tour: A Christmas Story: The Musical. NY/Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (ART), Secondhand Lions (Seattle 5th Ave), I Am Anne Hutchinson/I Am Harvey Milk (Strathmore/Lincoln Center), James and the Giant Peach (Goodspeed), The Gig (NYMF), Yeast Nation (FringeNYC), Minnie's Boys (York Theatre), Knickerbocker Holiday (York Theatre), Lend Me a Tenor (Ocean State Theatre), The Full Monty (Westchester Broadway), Candide (Arden Theatre Co.), ...Frog and Toad (Arden Theatre Co.), Finding Nemo: The Musical (Walt Disney World). BFA in Musical Theatre, University of Michigan-Go Blue! Proud member of AEA. www.nickgaswirth.com
Alex Gibson (Ensemble). Broadway Debut! Regional: Sergeant in Pirates of Penzance (Barrington Stage Company), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Guthrie Theater). Other credits include: Adele: Live in New York City (NBC), Bombshell in Concert, Scar in Disney on Classic (International tour with Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra). Alex is a graduate of NYU Tisch's New Studio on Broadway. Endless gratitude and love to his incredible family and friends. IG: @alexgibby www.AlexGibsonOnline.com
Billy Joe Kiessling (Ensemble/Viola) is thrilled to be here. Previous work at Williamstown, Lesser America, Dutch Kills, The Other Mirror, and Aruba Productions. All my love to Mom, Dad, Andrew, Carleen, Stewart/Whitley, and the creative team at The Great Comet for trusting me with this gorgeous work. Dedicated to Tomm Zorn, who is riding his own Great Comet in this vast and unknowing universe. @buhbuhbilly
Mary Spencer Knapp (Ensemble/Accordion). Originally from Princeton, NJ, Mary Spencer Knapp is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, educator and brainchild of Toot Sweet, NYC's premier psychedelic cabaret soul group. In addition to Toot Sweet, Mary tours regularly with Dominican artist Irka Mateo and Martin Vejarano's Cumbia River Band. She has performed in episodes of Steve Buscemi's Park Bench series on AOL with the Main Squeeze Orchestra and Denis Leary's Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll on FX. She has also starred in musical theater projects for NYC Fringe and Frigid Festivals. Mary holds a B.A. from Bard College with a concentration in voice and piano.
Reed Luplau (Ensemble). Overjoyed to be a part of The Great Comet! Broadway: Fiddler On The Roof. Off-Broadway: Kung Fu (Signature Theatre). Born in Perth, Western Australia, graduate of The Australian Ballet School. Dance: Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, Aszure Barton & Artists, Stephen Petronio Company, Sydney Dance Company, West Australian Ballet. Film/Television; Five Dances ("Theo"), Mozart in the Jungle, Mao's Last Dancer, Another Dance of Death, Superstars of Dance (NBC), Capital One Bank 'YES' Commercial. Thanks to Lakey & Sofia at CESD, and of course my mom and dad. www.reedluplau.com
Brandt Martinez (Swing). Grateful to be joining The Great Comet! Broadway: Aladdin, Fiddler On The Roof. Tours: Flashdance The Musical. Dance Company: San Diego City Ballet, Bad Boys of Dance. TV: "The Late Show", "The Tony Awards", "Good Morning America." LOVE and APPRECIATION to everyone who has supported getting here!
Andrew Mayer (Ensemble/Violin). Broadway Debut! Recent stage: The 12 - A New Rock Musical (Denver Center Theater), Dying for It (Atlantic Theater Co.), Fiddler on the Roof (Barrington Stage Co.) & (Westchester B'way), A Night of Carner & Gregor (54 Below), Los Valientes (Core Ensemble), Fallujah (TPAC & Kennedy Center), Marina (NYMF). Recent Screen: "The Hunted: Encore" (series), "The Unfinished", "III.1 - Romeo's Turn", "Swing Blues", "20 Feet Close". Training: Boston University School of Theatre (BFA - Acting), Manhattan School of Music (Violin, Voice, Piano), LAMDA (Classical Acting, Stage Combat). Thanks to the RENTS, MHB, DR, BU, MPW, and everybody whose supported with a "yes" to now! Instagram: @AcMusikman More at: www.andrewCmayer.com
Azudi Onyejekwe (Ensemble). Broadway: Violet (Flick standby, Original Broadway Cast). Off-Broadway/NYC: The Great Comet (Kazino), Central Avenue Breakdown (NYMF), Broken Bride (Cutting Room). NYC Workshops: NYTW, Playwrights Horizons, Ars Nova, York Theatre. Regional: Guthrie Theater, A.R.T., NJPAC, New Harmony Theatre, Cortland Repertory Theatre. Film/TV: HairBrained, "Madam Secretary." BFA: NYU Tisch. Acting Faculty: CAP21/ Molloy College. A foremost thanks to God and my Savior; love also to my incredible family, the Comet team, my manager Tony and Brisa. Always for my father. www.azudi.net
Pearl Rhein (Ensemble/Viola). Actor, multi-instrumentalist & songwriter. Broadway debut. New York: The Taming of the Shrew, Shakespeare in the Park. Off-Broadway: Transport (Irish Rep), Volpone (Red Bull). Regional: The Great Comet at A.R.T., Arena Stage, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, Playhouse on Park. MFA: UC San Diego, BA: Ball State University. Proud member of Actors' Equity & Local 802. Thanks to Dave & Rachel! Big love to J and the kiddos! www.pearlrhein.com, @pearlrhein
Heath Saunders (Ensemble/Guitar). Broadway debut. NYC: Lennon: Through a Glass Onion, I Am Harvey Milk (Avery Fisher Hall); Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (NYCC encores!); Der Gelbe Stern (NYMF). Regional: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (A.R.T.), The 12 (Denver Center), Hairspray, Rent (5th Avenue); Les Miserables, Avenue Q (Balagan); James and the Giant Peach (Seattle Children's). www.heathcliffsaunders.com @feeltheheath
Ani Taj (Ensemble) is a choreographer, performer, and founder of The Dance Cartel. She choreographs musicals, plays, concerts, music videos, art parties, flash mobs, and more. She is fueled by research trips to Brazil and loves to make dances inspired by Carnaval. Since 2012, The Dance Cartel's acclaimed event ONTHEFLOOR has toured many diverse spaces, including Ace Hotel NY, Velocity Dance Center, Bootleg Theater (LA), The High Line, Brooklyn Museum, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Music videos for Yoko Ono, Reggie Watts, Vic Mensa, Sarh, and The Sway Machinery. While bridging gaps between dance and music scenes, Taj keeps one foot firmly in the world of live theater. Recent projects include Runaways (New York City Center), Lazarus (Associate Choreographer, NYTW), The Convent of Pleasure (Cherry Lane Mentor Project), NOIR (SAF), The Nomad by Elizabeth Swados (The Flea), Good Men Wanted (ANTFest, Arena Stages), Love's Labour's Lost(Assistant Choreographer, Shakespeare in the Park), Jesse Eisenberg's Asuncion (Rattlestick), and several projects with Les Freres Corbusier.
Cathryn Wake (Ensemble/Clarinet). Broadway debut! Off-Broadway: The Fantasticks. Regional: The Glass Menagerie (Pittsburgh Public Theater), The Other Josh Cohen (Paper Mill Playhouse), The Seedbed (NJ Rep, World Premiere), The Second Girl (Contemporary American Theater Festival). Other recent credits: Lincoln Center American Songbook Gala (Alice Tully Hall), Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice (Workshop, New World Stages), Richard II, Hamlet (LAMDA), She Loves Me, Woyzeck (Pace University), Adam Guettel In Concert (SchimMel Center). Television: "Glee", "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" (Featured Vocalist), "America's Got Talent". Cathryn received her BFA from Pace University and is an alumna of the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. www.cathrynwake.com
Katrina Yaukey (Ensemble/Accordion). Broadway: Cabaret (2014), War Horse, Billy Elliot, Company, Cabaret (1998). National/International Tours: Billy Elliot, Sweeney Todd, Cabaret, Victor/Victoria. Off Broadway: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Princess Mary). A.R.T, The Public, ACT, The Cape Playhouse, Totem Pole Playhouse. Oboe Performance/Musical Theatre Penn State University. Current student Berklee College of Music in Music Production/Technology.
Lauren Zakrin (Ensemble). Broadway: Rock of Ages (Sherrie), National Tours: Wicked, Grease (Sandy), Legally Blonde. Off Broadway: Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812, Vegas: Surf: The Musical (Brooke), Regional: A.R.T. Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812. MUNY's Legally Blonde (Elle) www.laurenashleyzakrin.com @laurenzakrin
Dave Malloy (Book, Music, Lyrics, Orchestrations) is a composer/writer/performer/Sound Designer. He has written eleven musicals, including Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, in which he also originated the role of Pierre. Other shows include Ghost Quartet, a song cycle about love, death, and whiskey; Preludes, a musical fantasia set in the hypnotized mind of Sergei Rachmaninoff; Three Pianos, a drunken romp through Schubert's "Winterreise"; Black Wizard/Blue Wizard, a philosophical escapist fantasy; Beowulf - A Thousand Years of Baggage; Beardo; Sandwich; Clown Bible; and (The 99-cent) Miss Saigon. He has won two OBIE Awards, the Richard Rodgers Award, an ASCAP New Horizons Award, and a Jonathan Larson Grant, has been a Guest Professor in devised music theater at Princeton and Vassar Universities, and is the composer for Banana Bag & Bodice. Future projects include adaptations of Moby-Dick and Shakespeare's Henriad. He lives in Brooklyn. davemalloy.com
Rachel Chavkin (Director) is a director, writer, dramaturg, and Artistic Director of Brooklyn-based experimental ensemble, the TEAM (www.theteamplays.org). Known primarily for developing new work, she has directed multiple world premieres including Bess Wohl's Small Mouth Sounds for Ars Nova and subsequent transfer to the Signature Theatre, and Anaïs Mitchell's folkopera Hadestown for New York Theatre Workshop. Chavkin is an NYTW Usual Suspect where she also directed Rick Burkhardt, Alec Duffy, and Dave Malloy's Three Pianos, a drunken romp through Schubert's Winterreise, originally produced at the Ontological Incubator, where it earned a 2010 Obie Award. Malloy and Chavkin were awarded a 2013 Obie for Comet, and in 2016 she received an Obie for her direction of Marco Ramirez's The Royale at Lincoln Center, as well Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel nominations. Other projects include Anne Washburn's transadaptation of Euripides' Iphigenia in Aulis, with music by indie folk duo the Bengsons at Classic Stage Company, Meg Miroshnik's The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls at Yale Rep, an ongoing collaboration with British writer/performer Chris Thorpe, with whom she developed Confirmation about confirmation bias and Thorpe's conversations with political extremism, and multiple collaborations with Taylor Mac, including Act II of the world premiere of Mac's 5-Act, 5-hour extravaganza, The Lily's Revenge. Chavkin co-founded the TEAM in 2004 with the mission to collaboratively create new work about the experience of living in America today. Once described as "Gertrude Stein meets MTV," the company's work has been seen all over New York including at PS122 and The Public Theater, nationally at the Walker Art Center and the A.R.T., and internationally at the National Theatre in London, the National Theatre of Scotland, the Royal Court, and festivals across Europe, Australia, and Asia. Four-time winners of the Scotsman Fringe First Award, Winner 2011 Edinburgh International Festival Fringe Prize, 2011 Herald Angel, 2008 Edinburgh Total Theatre Award, Best Production Dublin Fringe 2007, nominated for a 2012 Drama League Award for Outstanding Musical, and a recipient of the American Theatre Wing's 2014 National Theatre Company Grant, the TEAM's work was cited on "Best of 2013" lists on 3 continents. The company's collaborative writing process and the development of Mission Drift, a new musical created with composer Heather Christian about Las Vegas and the particular spirit of American capitalism, was the subject of the documentary The TEAM Makes a Play, directed by Emmy Award winner Paulette Douglas. Chavkin has taught extensively, including at Playwrights Horizons Theater School within New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where she earned her B.F.A. She earned her M.F.A. at Columbia.
Sam Pinkleton (Choreography) recently directed Runaways for City Center Encores Off-Center. As a choreographer his work includes Machinal (Broadway/Roundabout); Kansas City Choir Boy (with Courtney Love); Rimbaud in NY (BAM); Pretty Filthy (The Civilians); Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play; Stage Kiss; Fly By Night (Playwrights Horizons); Marie Antoinette (Soho Rep); The Lightning Thief (Theatreworks USA), and shows with Theatre for A New Audience, Barrow Street Theatre, The TEAM, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and Pig Iron Theatre Company. He is an Associate Artist with The Civilians and The Dance Cartel and is Artistic Associate for City Center Encores Off-Center. This season Sam is also represented on Broadway as choreographer of Heisenberg, Significant Other, and Amélie.
Mimi Lien (Set Designer) is a designer of environments for theater, dance, and opera. Off-Broadway: Preludes, The Oldest Boy, Lincoln Center; John, Signature; Black Mountain Songs, BAM; An Octoroon, Soho Rep. Regional: Appropriate, Taper; Our Town, Actors Theatre of Louisville. Opera: The Long Walk, Opera Saratoga; Hansel and Gretel, Virginia Opera. She is artistic associate with Pig Iron Theatre Company, and co-founder of JACK, a performance space in Brooklyn. Her work has been recognized by numerous awards including a Lucille Lortel Award, Hewes Design Award, OBIE Award for Sustained Excellence, and a 2015 MacArthur Fellowship.
Paloma Young (Costume Designer) continues her work with Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Kazino, American Repertory Theatre, Ars Nova) for which she received a Drama Desk nomination and a Lucille Lortel Award. She won a Tony Award for Peter and the Starcatcher. Paloma is also the designer for Broadway's upcoming The Bandstand.
Bradley King (Lighting Designer) is a lighting designer based in New York City. His collaborations with Rachel Chavkin include Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Broadway), Hadestown (NYTW), Preludes (LCT3), The Fairy Tale Lives of Russian Girls (Yale Rep), and the upcoming The Royal Family (The Guthrie). His recent work includes Hadestown (NYTW), Every Angel is Brutal (Clubbed Thumb), As You Like It (Hudson Valley Shakespeare), Constellations & The Last Match (Old Globe), Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (ART: IRNE, Norton Awards), The Way West, Empanada Loca (Drama Desk Nom), Sucker Emcee, and Ninth and Joanie (LAByrinth Theater Company), Elijah Green (The Kitchen), A Winter's Tale (The Pearl Theatre Company), Jacuzzi (Ars Nova), And I and Silence (Signature Theatre Company), and Women or Nothing (Atlantic Theater Company). His work has been seen regionally at The Old Globe, American Repertory Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, McCarter Theatre Center, Penobscot Theatre Company, South Coast Repertory, Virginia Stage Company, Yale Repertory Theatre, and Williamstown Theatre Festival. His opera work includes Bard SummerScape, Boston Early Music Festival, Kentucky Opera, New York City Opera, Opera Omaha, Vancouver Opera, and Virginia Opera. bradleykingld.com.
Nicholas Pope (Sound Designer). Design credits include King Lear, Epiphany, Saturday Night Fever, Gift of Angels (Universal Studios, Osaka, Japan). Associate credits include A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder (Tony Award: Best Musical, Drama Desk nomination: Outstanding Sound Design), Indian Ink, Passion (Drama Desk nomination: Outstanding Sound Design), The Visit, Battle of Black and Dogs, Father Comes Home From The Wars. Attended Yale School of Drama.
Sonny Paladino (Music Supervisor). Music Director for the upcoming Broadway revival of Smokey Joe's Café. Recent credits include: Associate Conductor, The Last Ship (written by 16 time Grammy Award winner, Sting), and the Tony Award winning Best Revival Pippin. Other Broadway credits: Jesus Christ Superstar, Billy Elliot, Grease, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Guys and Dolls, Mama Mia, Promises, Promises, Addams Family, Women on the Verge. Music Supervisor for Disney's High School Musical (Milan/Italy tour.) 1st National Tours: Disney's High School Musical, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Grease. Work with Alicia Keys, Ke$ha, Matthew Morrison. As a composer: The Return of the Blue Cat (with poet F.D. Reeve.) TV: The X-Factor (Australia), The Next Big Thing. Music Director and arranger for the hit group The Doo Wop Project, which travels around the country performing classic Doo-Wop music and contemporary songs in that style. www.thedoowopproject.com B.F.A. in Jazz Piano from CUNY City College. www.sonnypaladino.com
Or Matias (Music Director) is an Israeli music director and composer living in NYC. Or has written extensively for theater and dance, and is currently working on a musical adaptation of The Wave- the 1967 experiment which turned an entire high school into a proto-fascist movement. In the summer of 2015 he played the role of Sergei Rachmaninoff in Lincoln Center's (LCT3) production of Preludes, for which he was nominated for a Lucille Lortel award for Outstanding Featured Actor. He has also recently music directed at The Public Theater (Michael John LaChiusa's First Daughter Suite) and A.R.T. (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812). A Juilliard and NYU graduate, Or is very passionate about developing new work, and is thrilled to reprise his role as music director for Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812! For Hadassah, my music angel, with love.
STEWART/WHITLEY (Casting). Duncan Stewart CSA & Benton Whitley CSA. BROADWAY/NY: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (starring Josh Groban), On The Town, Pippin, Chicago The Musical, La Cage Aux Folles, Hollywood Bowl West Side Story, The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Carnegie Hall West Side Story, The Band Wagon, Carnegie Hall Sings, Pageant; WEST END/UK: Thriller Live, Menier Chocolate Factory; TOURS: Once, Shrek, Elf, Flashdance, Anything Goes, Bullets Over Broadway, The Duck Commander Musical, We Will Rock You; UPCOMING: Finding Neverland National Tour, Into The Woods National Tour, Prince of Egypt, Waterfall, August Rush; REGIONAL: American Repertory Theater, The Alley Theatre, Bay Street Theater, Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS), Philadelphia Theatre Company, Royal Caribbean. Casting Associate Andrea Zee CSA & Casting Assistant Danny Dunitz. stewartwhitley.com
Karyn Meek (Production Stage Manager). Broadway: Fiddler on the Roof, Rent, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Elf. National Tours: The Drowsy Chaperone, La Cage Aux Folles, 9 to 5. Off-Broadway: Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812 (Kazino & ART) The Royale (Lincoln Center), Preludes (LCT3), Almost, Maine, (Daryl Roth Theatre) Summer of '42, (Variety Arts), Iphigenia in Aulis, Naked, Hurricane, The Misanthrope (Classic Stage Company) The Day Emily Married, Barefoot Boy With Shoes On (Primary Stages) What Didn't Happen (Playwright's Horizons) The Dying Gaul (Vineyard Theatre) and many others. Regional: Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Dallas Summer Musicals, TUTS, TOTS, Pantages Theatre, Starlight Theatre, Missouri Rep.
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