THE LAST ROMANCE Opens Tonight at Broward Stage Door Theatre
Playwright Joe DiPietro has become increasingly adept at illustrating the fascinating dynamics of love and family. From his first Off-Broadway success, I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, through his Tony Award-winning hit Memphis, DiPietro has examined many aspects of the human connection. In the Broward Stage Door Theatre's upcoming production of The Last Romance, DiPietro explores a relationship between a man and a woman who just happen to be over the age of 65, and the family ties that bind, and pull. The play is a gentle and tender comedy that mixes a lot of humor with a little bit of heartbreak... and opera!
Director Arthur Whitelaw and Stage Door's Artistic Director Derelle Bunn have cast Larry Bramble, Phyllis Spear, Sally Bondi, and James Parks in the production, which will open tonight, October 10th, and run through November 23rd.
"The Last Romance is a warm, funny and insightful play about love after 65," says Whitelaw. "I hope our audiences will leave the theatre with a smile on their faces and a tear in their eyes. I know that after I read it, I did. Joe DiPietro is a talented young writer, who knows his characters and their territory."
Larry Bramble agrees. "When I first read this play I knew I had to play the role of Ralph. It seemed like it was written for me. Stage Door has allowed that dream to come true. I just directed Over the River and Through the Woods for Stage Door, and I have become a big fan of Joe DiPietro's plays. He has an innate sense of what touches our souls and what makes us human."
Joe DiPietro wrote the book and lyrics to the musical comedy hit I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, (composer: Jimmy Roberts), the longest running musical revue in off-Broadway history, with productions staged in over 150 cities around the world. He is also the author of the plays Over The River And Through The Woods, The Kiss At City Hall, The Virgin Weeps, and the comic thriller The Art Of Murder (winner of the 2000 Edgar Award). He wrote the book to the "new" Gershwin musical Nice Work If You Can Get It (world premiere: Goodspeed Opera House, 2001), a new adaptation of Rodgers & Hart's Babes In Arms (world premiere: Goodspeed Opera House, 2002) and a new adaptation of Rodgers & Hammerstein's Allegro (world premiere: Signature Theatre, 2004). In addition to his book and lyrics for the recent off-Broadway musical The Thing About Men (composer: Jimmy Roberts), DiPietro's other projects include book and lyrics for the rock & roll musical Memphis (composer: David Bryan, premiered regionally in late 2003), and the book for All Shook Up, an original musical comedy featuring the songs of Elvis Presley which opened on Broadway in 2005. Joe is the recipient of the William Inge Theater Festival New Voices In American Theater Award, and has won the O'Neill National Playwright's Conference MacArthur Award for comic writing.
Arthur Whitelaw has been producing, directing, writing and acting for the past 61 years. His productions have won every major industry award including the Tony, Oscar, Emmy, Olivier, Evening Standard, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, etc. He has discovered many future stars starting with his first production, Best Foot Forward which introduced Liza Minnelli and Christopher Walken to the New York stage. Others include: Marvin Hamlich, Stephen Schwartz, Gary Burgoff, Blyth Danner, Paul Michael Glaser, Christen Chenowyth to name only a few. His productions have played all over the world in and in many languages. Some of his many television credits include: You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown (NBC) Emmy Nom., Celebrating Gershwin (PBS/BBC) EMMY WIN and for HBO, Camelot, The Rainmaker, The Deadly Game, and Groucho. His film credits include: Butterflies Are Free, and Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn with Jodie Foster. A few Seasons ago Mr. Whitelaw acted in Full Circle (a play he wrote about his long career) and directed A Taffeta Wedding (a sequel to The Taffetas) both for the Stage Door Theatre in Coral Springs. He has also just finished his autobiography Working For Peanuts. Last year Mr. Whitelaw donated his vast theatre files to the Library of Congress.
The Last Romance will run from October 10th - November 23rd at The Broward Stage Door Theatre in Coral Springs. The theatre is located at 8036 Sample Road, in Coral Springs.Tickets for The Last Romance are $38 - $42; $16 student tickets are also available. Tickets may be purchased at the Broward Stage Door Theatre box office at 954-344-7765 or on line at http://www.stagedoorfl.org. For more information about The Last Romance and/or The Broward Stage Door Theatre, visit www.stagedoorfl.org.