Photo Flash: Opening Night at Marriott Theatre's NOW AND FOREVER
The Marriott Theatre, Chicago's longest running musical theatre, has been given the honor to create a theatrical celebration of arguably one of the most successful musical composers of all-time, Andrew Lloyd Webber. A cast of Broadway and Marriott favorites, young rising stars, concert dancers, and musical theatre hoofers has been assembled to bring this iconic music to life. NOW AND FOREVER will offer a treasure chest of music from such beloved Webber musicals as EVITA, CATS, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND, JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT, STARLIGHT EXPRESS, and SUNSET BOULEVARD. NOW AND FOREVER will also feature music from the mega hit musical PHANTOM OF THE OPERA and its sequel LOVE NEVER DIES, which has yet to play in North America.
NOW AND FOREVER is co-created by Marriott Theatre Lead Artistic Director, and Jeff Award-winner, Aaron Thielen and 16-time Jeff Award-winner Marc Robin (Co-creators of the Award-winning musical ALL NIGHT STRUT, A FASCINATIN' RHYTHM). Robin, who has directed more than 20 Marriott productions, will also serve as Director and Choreographer for NOW AND FOREVER with co-Choreographers Harrison McEldowney (Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, River North Dance Chicago, Dance Works) and Matt Raftery (GUYS & DOLLS (Director/Choreographer), THE MUSIC MAN, MY FAIR LADY, PIRATES OF PENZANCE).
NOW AND FOREVER stars Broadway veteran, and Marriott Theatre alumnae, Linda Balgord. Miss Balgord, long associated with Andrew Lloyd Webber, starred as "Grizabella" in the Original Broadway Production of CATS; "Norma Desmond" in SUNSET BOULEVARD; and "Rose Vibert" in ASPECTS OF LOVE; Erin Stewart, A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC on Broadway, "Christine" in PHANTOM OF THE OPERA; Susan Moniz, The Marriott Theatre's CAROUSEL, SHOWBOAT, WEST SIDE STORY, KING AND I, KISMET (Jeff Award), PEGGY SUE GOT MARRIED, SWING, INTO THE WOODS, "Sandy" and "Rizzo" in Broadway's GREASE and Chicago Shakespeare's FOLLIES; Stephanie Binetti, Marriott Theatre's WHITE CHRISTMAS, LEGALLY BLONDE, CURTAINS on Broadway, The National Tour of MAMA MIA; Catherine Lord, Marriott Theatre's 42nd STREET, THE Will Rogers FOLLIES, HAIRSPRAY; Max Quinlan, straight from the 25th Anniversary National Tour of LES MISERABLES, Marriott Theatre's THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA (Jeff Award), JOSEPH AN THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT, MY FAIR LADY, ALL SHOOK UP; Ben Jacoby, Maine State Music Theatre's THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA, A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, Utah Shakespeare Festival's LES MISERABLES, THE GLASS MENAGERIE, Romeo & Juliet; Brian Bohr, "Joseph" in Marriott Theatre's JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT, "Prince" in CINDERELLA, DREAMGIRLS and THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, "Joseph" in Paramount Theatre's JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT; Travis Taylor, Marriott Theatre's PIRATES OF PENZANCE, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, SUNDAY IN THE PARK; Jameson Cooper, Marriott Theatre's HERO, LEGALLY BLONDE, FOR THE BOYS, A CHORUS LINE and Matt Raftery, who has starred, directed or choreographed more than 20 productions at Marriott Theatre as well as credits on Broadway, National Tours. Raftery also serves as resident director of Marriott's Theatre for Young Audiences.
The NOW AND FOREVER dancers are Lauren Blane (Giordano Dance, Marriott Theatre's SHOUT) Michael Darnell (Inaside Chicago Dance), Ellen Green (Royal Danish Ballet, Ballet Chicago), Monique Haley (River North Dance Company), Raymond Interior (Dance Alloy Theater, Winifred Haun and Dancers), Luke Manley (River North Dance Company, American Repertory Ballet) Sam Rogers (Broadway's WEST SIDE STORY, Marriott Theatre's SHOUT, WHITE CHRISTMAS and PIRATES OF PENZANCE, Goodspeed Opera House's CAROUSEL) and Melissa Zaremba (Marriott Theatre's MY ONE AND ONLY, SHOUT, FOR THE BOYS, Radio City Rockette).
Lead Artistic Director Aaron Thielen heads the Artistic Team of NOW AND FOREVER, with Direction and Choreography by Marc Robin, Music Direction by Ryan T. Nelson, Lighting Design by Diane Williams, Scenic Design by Thomas M. Ryan, Costume Design by Nancy Missimi and Sound Design by Robert E. Gilmartin. Patti Garwood conducts the Marriott Theatre Orchestra.
Stephanie Binetti, Michael Darnell and Company
Dancers with choreographer Harrison McEldowney
Dancers with Marc Robin
Michael Darnell, Melissa Zaremba and Raymond Interior