Geva's 47th Season Begins With LA CAGE AUX FOLLES

By: Aug. 14, 2019

Geva Theatre Center presents La Cage Aux Folles, with book by Harvey Fierstein, music and lyrics by Jerry Herman, based on the play by Jean Poiret, directed by Melissa Rain Anderson, with musical direction by Don Kot, and choreography by Sam Hay in the Elaine P. Wilson Stage from September 3 through October 6.

In sunny St. Tropez, Georges and Albin run a glamorous nightclub with fabulous drag performers. Their blissful existence is turned upside down when Georges' son announces that he is getting the daughter of one of France's most conservative politicians. Georges and Albin do their best to ensure that the marriage goes off without a hitch, with hilarious results. One of musical theatre's biggest all-time hits, La Cage aux Folles features an exuberant score by Jerry Herman (Mame; Hello, Dolly!). Winner of six Tony Awards including "Best Musical" when it premiered in 1983, both the 2004 and 2010 Broadway revivals won the Tony Award for "Best Revival of a Musical." La Cage aux Folles was the inspiration for the 1996 hit film The Birdcage.

Based on the 1978 film of the same name, which was, in turn, based on a 1973 play by Jean Poiret, La Cage aux Folles opened on Broadway at the Palace Theatre in August 1983. This production received eight Tony Award nominations, winning six including Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book. It also won two Drama Desk Awards. The show ran for four years and 1,761 performances. It was revived on Broadway in 2004 and won the Tony Award for Best Revival. The 2008 London revival won the Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival. The production transferred to Broadway in 2010 and was nominated for eleven Tony Awards, winning for Best Revival of a Musical. La Cage aux Folles is the first musical in Broadway history to win the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical twice and it has been awarded a "Best Musical" or "Best Revival of a Musical" Tony Award for each of its Broadway productions.

The cast is led by Mark Cuddy as Georges and Danny Vaccaro as Albin. In celebration of his 25th Anniversary as Geva's Artistic Director, Mark Cuddy will star as nightclub owner Georges. In 2018 Cuddy returned to the stage after an eighteen year hiatus in an acclaimed performance of the world premiere of Heartland in Geva's Fielding Stage. Previously on the Geva stage he played Vladimir in Geva's 2000 production of Waiting for Godot. Danny Vaccaro makes his Geva Theatre Center debut as Albin. Danny was part of the Tony Award-winning production of La Cage Aux Folles in 2011. Other New York credits include The Diary of Anne Frank, Madison Square Garden's The Wizard of Oz and Nunsense A-men.

Making their Geva debuts in La Cage aux Folles are Michael RJ Campbell (6th Street Playhouse productions of The Addams Family and The Rocky Horror Show) as Francis; Giovanni DaSilva (International tour of A Chorus Line, European tour of Candide) as Angelique; Kyle Dupree (Off-Broadway's Fabulous: Queen of Musical Comedies) as Hanna; Donovan Michael Hoffer (Broadway production of Rocktopia) as Chantal; Paige Silvester (national tours of The Sound of Music and Evita) as Anne; Sam Tanabe (Broadway productions of Allegiance and Off-Broadway productions of Red Eye of Love and Hello, Dolly!) as Bitelle; Matthew Tiberi (Broadway productions of Finding Neverland and the national tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat); Joseph Tudor (national tour of Elf: The Musical) as Mercedes; Michael Evan Williams (Off-Broadway production of Cruel Intentions, National Tour of Bullets over Broadway) as Jean Michel; and Esther Winter (West End production of Show Boat) as Jacqueline. Returning to Geva are Kevin Curtis (Geva's 2018 production of Hair) as Jacob; Susan Haefner (Geva's A Christmas Carol; Broadway productions of State Fair, Thoroughly Modern Millie and 42nd Street) as Mme Renaud/Marie Dindon; and James Michael Reilly (Geva productions of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and Inherit the Wind) as M. Renaud/Edouard Dindon. Local actors Kat Berton, Brent Hammes; Kyle Johnson, Patrick Jones, Kayla McGallian, and Kelsey Roberts complete the cast.

La Cage aux Folles is directed by Melissa Rain Anderson (last season's production of Hair, 2017's sell-out hit, In the Heights, 2016's opening production of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, the 2015 sell-out hit production of Monty Python's Spamalot and 2014's The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) with musical direction by Don Kot and choreography by Sam Hay. The creative team includes Adam Koch (scenic design), Kevin Copenhaver (costume design), Brian J. Lilienthal (lighting design), Danny Erdberg (sound design), Bettie O. Rogers (wig design) and Jean Gordon Ryon (dramaturg).

The 2019-2020 Season is sponsored by ESL Federal Credit Union. The Honorary Season Producer is Dr. Dawn Lipson. La Cage aux Folles is produced with support from Lead Co-Producer Harter Secrest & Emery LLP; Media Sponsors 13WHAM and WARM 101.3 and Honorary Producers Charis and Rich Warshof.

La Cage aux Folles begins previews on September 3, opens September 7 and runs through October 6.