Barrington Stage Company Presents CAROUSEL 6/17 Thru 7/11

To celebrate its 15th Anniversary Season in the Berkshires, Barrington Stage Company, under the leadership of Artistic Director Julianne Boyd and Producing Director Richard M. Parison Jr., presents Carousel, Rodgers and Hammerstein's musical masterpiece of love, violence and redemption, from June 17 through July 11. Directed by Julianne Boyd, with choreography by Joshua Bergasse, and musical direction by Darren R. Cohen, Carousel will have a press opening on Sunday, June 21 at 5pm.

Based on the play Liliom by Ferenc Molnar, Carousel boasts music by Richard Rodgers, and book and lyrics by

Oscar Hammerstein II. Carousel has been called "the best musical of the 20th century" by TIME Magazine, and is considered the first musical to combine dialogue and music (i.e. "If I Loved You") seamlessly into one powerful dramatic scene. Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel brings us to the New England seaside, where a ride on the carousel changes Julie Jordan's life forever.

There, she meets Billy Bigelow, a swaggering carnival barker. Their passionate, ill-fated love affair - set against a backdrop of such glorious songs as "If I Loved You," "You'll Never Walk Alone" and "June is Bustin' Out All Over" is the heart of this masterwork, Rodgers & Hammerstein's personal favorite.

Carousel features Aaron Ramey (Billy Bigelow), Patricia Noonan (Julie Jordan), Sara Jean Ford (Carrie Pipperidge), Todd Buonopane (Enoch Snow), Christopher Innvar (Jigger), Teri Ralston (Nettie Fowler), Leslie Becker (Mrs. Mullin), Daniel Marcus (The Starkeeper), and Kristen Paulicelli (Louise).

The Ensemble includes Edmund Bagnell, Al Blackstone, Daniel Garrity, Daniel Kermidas, Kaitlynn Kleinman, Hanna Koczela, Christy Morton, Ronnie Nelson, Neil O'Brien, Sarah O'Gleby, Kate Orenstein, Emelyn Theriault, Todd Thurston, Deven Walker, and Peggy Pharr Wilson.

The production design team is comprised of Robert Mark Morgan (sets), Holly Cain (costumes), Scott Pinkney (lights), Michael Eisenberg (sound). Renee Lutz, is back for her 15th season as BSC's production stage manager.

After long and distinguished careers with other collaborators, Richard Rodgers (composer, 1902-1979) and Oscar Hammerstein II (librettist/lyricist, 1895-1960) joined forces in 1943 to create the most successful partnership in the American musical theatre. Oklahoma!, the first Rodgers & Hammerstein musical, was also the first of a new genre, the musical play, blending Rodgers' sophisticated style of musical comedy with Hammerstein's innovations in operetta. Oklahoma! was followed by Carousel in 1945, then Allegro, South Pacific, The King and I, Me and Juliet, Pipe Dream, Flower Drum Song, and The Sound of MusiC. Rodgers & Hammerstein wrote one musical specifically for the big screen, State Fair, and one for television, Cinderella.

The original production of Carousel opened at Broadway's Majestic Theatre on April 19, 1945, starring John Raitt and Jan Clayton. After running nearly 900 performances in New York , the show closed in 1947. It would continue to have a healthy life, however, in four revivals, including a much celebrated 1994 production that garnered five Tony Awards and launched the career of Audra McDonald as a major Broadway star. The musical was adapted for the screen in 1956 starring Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones. Robert Goulet starred in a television production of the play in 1967.

Performances for Carousel will take place at Barrington Stage, 30 Union Street, Pittsfield . Showtimes are Tuesday and Wednesday at 7pm, Thursday through Saturday at 8pm, Wednesday and Friday matinees at 2pm, and Sunday at 5pm. Opening Night: Sunday, June 21 at 5pm. $15 tickets are available for June 17 and June 18 previews. Pay What You Can Performance for 35 year olds and younger: Friday, June 19 at 8pm. As part of its 15th Anniversary Season, BSC will have 15 tickets available for every performance at $15. Tickets can be purchased ahead at the box office, by calling 413-236-8888 or visiting www.barringtonstageco.org.

Photos: Aaron Ramey and Patricia Noonan

Photo Credit: Kevin Sprague


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