Champlin, Caplan, Etc. Set for 'Harris Burdick' at BSC Lab
The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, the new musical by Chris Miller and Nathan Tysen, the team who created last season's Musical Theatre Lab premiere of The Burnt Part Boys, inspired by Chris Van Allsburg's (Jumanji and The Polar Express) children's book, is next at Barrington Stage Company's Musical Theatre Lab. Featuring book and direction by (Helen Hayes Award winner) Joe Calarco (Shakespeare's R & J), with music by Chris Miller and lyrics by Nathan Tysen, The Mysteries of Harris Burdick begins performances August 21 and runs through September 1, at BSC's Stage II space, The Berkshire Athenaeum, 1 Wendell Avenue in Pittsfield.
"Six people get lost in a phantasmagorical world inspired by Chris Van Allsburg's famous children's book. Equal parts Pirandello, Beckett & musical comedy, The Mysteries of Harris Burdick is a wild ride through wonder, fear, and the imagination," state press notes.
The Mysteries of Harris Burdick features Charlie Brady (BSC's The Burnt Part Boys), Matt Caplan (Broadway's High Fidelity and Rent), Obie Award winner Donna Lynne Champlin, Caroline McMahon (Off-Broadway's My Life with Albertine), Drama Desk nominees Lynne Wintersteller (Closer Than Ever), and Michael Winther (Songs from An Unmade Bed). The production is designed by Brian Prather, with costumes by Guy Lee Bailey, lighting by Kat Fleishhacker and Garrett Herzig, and sound by Daniel A. Little. Tom Kitt (High Fidelity composer) is musical director, Sara Sahin is Assistant Director and Jamie Thoma is production stage manager.
Chris Miller (music) and Nathan Tysen (lyrics) are the recipients of the 2007 Kitty Carlisle Hart Award at the Vineyard Theatre, the 2006 Richard Rodgers Award, the 2004 Darryl Roth Creative Spirit Award, a 2004 Frederick Loewe Foundation Grant, a 2003 Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation Grant, and the ASCAP Max Dreyfus Award for outstanding new voice in musical theatre. Together they wrote The Burnt Part Boys (book by Mariana Elder; produced at Barrington Stage Co.; American Theatre Critics New Play Award Finalist; opening Off-Broadway at the Vineyard Theatre, winter 2008.). Recently profiled in The Dramatist Magazine under "Fifty to Watch," other Miller/Tysen projects include the song-cycle, Fugitive Songs, and a new musical commissioned by Lincoln Center Theater.
Following The Mysteries of Harris Burdick is "Songs by Ridiculously Talented Composers and Lyricists you probably don't know but should" Friday, August 31 and Saturday, September 1 at Barrington Stage (30 Union Street). Directed by Michael Perreca, the show is "a reprise of last summer's surprise hit. Narrated by William Finn, this is a Labor Day weekend celebration of extraordinary new songs. Finn shares with the audience what makes a good lyric, why some work and others don't you'll feel as if you're in a master class in songwriting taught by the master himself." Tickets are $35.
Please note the performance schedule for Barrington Stage Company's Musical Theatre Lab: Tuesday through Friday evening at 7:30pm, Saturday at 4 and 8pm, at The Berkshire Athenaeum, 1 Wendell Avenue in Pittsfield. Tickets are $25-$30 and are on sale now. For information on a Musical Theater Lab pass, call 413-236-8888, from South County call 413-528-8888 or online at www.barringtonstageco.org.
Photo - Chris Miller and Nathan Tyson