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We're So in Love! Kelli O'Hara and Will Chase to Star in Roundabout's KISS ME, KATE Benefit Concert

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Roundabout Theatre Company has just announced a one-night only Benefit Concert Reading of Kiss Me, Kate by Sam and Bella Spewack with music and lyrics by Cole Porter, starring Kelli O'Hara and Will Chase.

Roundabout's Associate Artistic Director Scott Ellis will direct this one-night only special event. The Benefit Concert Reading will take place on Monday, December 12, 2016 at 7:00 PM at Studio 54.

Proceeds from the Benefit Concert Reading of Kiss Me, Kate support Roundabout Theatre Company's many programs and initiatives, including the Musical Theatre Fund which has allowed Roundabout to produce acclaimed musicals such as She Loves Me, Company, Nine, The Pajama Game, Sunday in the Park with George, Anything Goes, On the Twentieth Century, Into the Woods, The Robber Bridegroom and this season's Holiday Inn, The New Irving Berlin Musical.

The reading brings back Roundabout alum and Tony winner Kelli O'Hara who was nominated for her role in the 2008 revival of The Pajama Game opposite Harry Connick, Jr. She also participated in a Benefit Concert reading of She Loves Me in 2011 directed by Scott Ellis. Another alum, Will Chase, also returns to Roundabout after his Tony-nominated turn in 2012's The Mystery of Edwin Drood.

In Cole Porter's sparkling 1948 musical, the warring lovers of The Taming of the Shrew are causing trouble both onstage and off. While putting on a musical version of Shakespeare's play, exes FrEd Graham and Lili Vanessi can't decide if they're enraged, enamored, or enormously confused whenever they cross paths out of character. Throw in some mistaken identity, a pair of surprisingly eloquent gangsters, and a whole lot of romantic entanglements, and what you get is Kiss Me, Kate -- a dazzling classic that earned the first-ever Tony award for Best Musical.

VIP, Benefactor and Producer tickets include admission to an exclusive cast party following the performance. The evening is co-chaired by Roundabout Board members Michael T. Cohen, Colliers International LLC and Roxanne and Scott Bok, along with Leadership Council members Patrick Crosetto and Paula Dominick.

Additional cast members and creative team will be announced soon.

KELLI O'HARA (Lilli Vanessi). At the 2015 Tony's, Kelli secured her first award (and 6th nomination) for her portrayal of Anna Leonowens in Lincoln Center Theater's revival of The King and I. Kelli's first nomination was for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for the 2005 production of The Light in the Piazza. Her subsequent nominations were for The Pajama Game (2006), South Pacific (2008), Nice Work If You Can Get It (2012) and The Bridges of Madison County (2014). She made her Broadway debut in Jekyll & Hyde and followed it with Sondheim's Follies and the 2002 Sweet Smell of Success opposite John Lithgow. Among her film and television credits are Sex & The City 2, Martin Scorsese's short The Key to Reserva opposite Simon Baker; The Dying Gaul, "Blue Bloods" and "NUMB3RS." She has also released two solo albums including Always & Wonder in the World.

WILL CHASE (FrEd Graham) recently starred as Luke Wheeler on the ABC drama "Nashville." On stage he currently stars as William Shakespeare in "Something Rotten" on Broadway, and before that he had most recently been featured as John Jasper in the Broadway revival of The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Tony, Outer Critics Nominations). Other Television includes Detective Doug Young on "The Good Wife," Michael Swift on NBC's "Smash," "Necessary Roughness," "Rescue Me," "Pan Am," "Unforgettable," "White Collar," "Royal Pains," "Blue Bloods," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," "Cupid," "Conviction," "Third Watch," "One Life To Live," "Guiding Light," "All My Children" and "As The World Turns." Best known for his work on stage, he has starred on Broadway in Nice Work If You Can Get It, Rent, Miss Saigon, The Full Monty, Aida, Lennon, High Fidelity, The Story of My Life and Billy Elliot. He was also seen at New York City Center Encores! in Bells Are Ringing and Pipe Dream. Film includes Butterflies of Bill Baker, Four Single Fathers, Shaft and Rent: Filmed Live on Broadway. Recordings include the original Broadway Cast recordings of The Mystery Of Edwin Drood, High Fidelity and The Story Of My Life, A Little Princess: Studio Cast Recording, Love On A Summer Afternoon: Songs of Sam Davis,ThisOrdinaryThursday:The Songs of Georgia Stitt, and Thirteen Stories Down: Songs of Jonathan Reid Gealt. He trained at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he studied conducting with Atlanta Symphony's Robert Spano and earned a Bachelor of Music Degree in percussion. Will has two daughters, Daisy and Gracie, and resides in New York City.

Scott Ellis (Director). Broadway: She Loves Me (Tony Award nomination, Outer Critics Circle nomination), You Can't Take It With You (Tony Award nomination, Outer Critics Circle nomination), On the Twentieth Century (Outer Critics Circle nomination), The Elephant Man (Outer Critics Circle nomination), The Mystery Of Edwin Drood (Tony nomination), Harvey, Curtains (Tony nomination), The Little Dog Laughed (Lortel nomination), Twelve Angry Men (Tony nomination), The Man Who Had All The Luck, The Rainmaker, 1776 (Drama Desk, Tony nomination), Company, Steel Pier (Tony nomination), She Loves Me (Tony nomination), Picnic, A Month In The Country. Off-Broadway: Dada Wolf, Papa Hot (LCT), Tom Durin, Gruesome Playground Inuries, Streamers, Good Boys And True, The Waverly Gallery, Flora, The Red Menace (DD nom), and The World Goes 'Round (Drama Desk Award). TV: "Weeds" (EP), "30 Rock" (Emmy nomination, Best Director), "Modern Family," "Frasier," "The Good Wife." Associate Artistic Director, Roundabout Theatre Company.

Tax-deductible benefit tickets are available by calling Roundabout's Development Office at 212-719-9393 ext 369. General tickets will go on sale on October 11.

Underwriter Package at $100,000 ($97,060 tax-deductible) - Includes ten premium house seats in center orchestra; listing as an Underwriter on all posters, programs and press materials below show title; invitation to exclusive pre-show cast and crew dinner for all ten guests; reserved seating at post-show cast party; a complimentary cocktail at intermission.

Gold Sponsor Package at $50,000 ($47,640 tax-deductible) - Includes eight premium house seats in center orchestra; listing as an Underwriter on all posters, programs and press materials below show title; invitation to exclusive pre-show cast and crew dinner for all eight guests; reserved seating at post-show cast party; a complimentary cocktail at intermission.

Silver Sponsor Package at $25,000 ($23,220 tax-deductible) - Includes six premium house seats in center orchestra; listing as an Underwriter on all posters, programs and press materials below show title; invitation to exclusive pre-show cast and crew dinner for all six guests; reserved seating at post-show cast party; a complimentary cocktail at intermission; a limited edition; framed show poster signed by the company.

Producer Ticket(s) at $5,000 ($4,720 tax-deductible) - Includes premium house seat in center orchestra; complimentary cocktail at intermission; reserved seating at post-show cast party and a limited edition; framed show poster signed by the company.

Benefactor Ticket(s) at $2,500 ($2,220 tax-deductible) - Includes premium house seat in center orchestra; complimentary cocktail at intermission; invitation to attend post-show cast party and a limited edition; framed show poster signed by the company.

VIP Ticket(s) at $1,000 ($740 tax-deductible) - Includes premium seat in center orchestra; complimentary cocktail at intermission; an invitation to attend post-show cast party.

To purchase tickets at the VIP level and above, or to learn more about Underwriter Packages, please contact Natalie Rohr at 212-719-9393 ext. 369; natalier@roundabouttheatre.org.

Starting on October 11, select orchestra and mezzanine tickets ($150-$500) will also be available to the general public by calling Roundabout Audience Services at (212) 719-1300 or online at www.roundabouttheatre.org/kissmekate.

Roundabout Theatre Company is committed to producing the highest quality theatre with the finest artists, sharing stories that endure, and providing accessibility to all audiences. A not-for-profit company, Roundabout fulfills its mission each season through the production of classic plays and musicals; development and production of new works by established and emerging writers; educational initiatives that enrich the lives of children and adults; and a subscription model and audience outreach programs that cultivate and engage all audiences.

Roundabout Theatre Company presents a variety of plays, musicals, and new works on its five stages, each of which is specifically designed to enhance the needs of Roundabout's mission. Off-Broadway, the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre, which houses the Laura Pels Theatre and Black Box Theatre, with its simple sophisticated design, is perfectly suited to showcasing new plays. The grandeur of its Broadway home on 42nd Street, American Airlines Theatre, sets the ideal stage for the classics. Roundabout's Studio 54 provides an exciting and intimate Broadway venue for its musical and special event productions. The Stephen Sondheim Theatre offers a state of the art LEED certified Broadway theatre in which to stage major large-scale musical revivals. Together these distinctive homes serve to enhance Roundabout's work on each of its stages.

Roundabout Theatre Company's 50th Anniversary Celebration continues through 2016, commemorating the company's numerous accomplishments and vision for the future with bold new productions of classic plays, a revival of the Roundabout's first musical, and new work by some of the country's most exciting young talent. Founded in 1965, Roundabout Theatre Company has grown from a small 150-seat theatre in a converted Chelsea supermarket basement to become one of the nation's most influential not-for-profit theatre companies, as well as one of New York City's leading cultural institutions. Roundabout has been recognized with 36 Tonys, 50 Drama Desks, 59 Outer Critics Circle, 12 Obie and 18 Lucille Lortel Awards for its work on five stages, reaching more than 700,000 theatergoers and employing hundreds of artists each year.

Roundabout's season includes Holiday Inn, The New Irving Berlin Musical by Gordon Greenberg and Chad Hodge, directed by Gordon Greenberg with music and lyrics by Irving Berlin; Diane Lane, Chuck Cooper, Tavi Gevinson, John Glover, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Harold Perrineau and Joel Grey in The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov with a new version by Stephen Karam, directed by Simon Godwin; Love, Love, Love by Mike Bartlett, directed by Michael Mayer and the national tour of Sam Mendes & Rob Marshall's Tony Award-winning production of Cabaret. The 2016-2017 Roundabout Underground season includes Kingdom Come, a new play by Jenny Rachel Weiner, directed by Kip Fagan.

Roundabout's season in 2017 will include Arthur Miller's The Price directed by Terry Kinney; If I Forget by Steven Levenson and Napoli, Brooklyn by Meghan Kennedy.


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