Nancy Anderson, Paul Binotto & More Set for York Theatre Company's IONIONESCOPADE; Full Cast Announced

The award-winning York Theatre Company (James Morgan. - Producing Artistic Director) today announced complete casting for their upcoming mainstage production of Ionescopade, "A Musical Vaudeville," which begins rehearsals today, including Nancy Anderson (Kiss Me Kate, PBS), who makes her return to the York's stage. The full cast also includes Paul Binotto (Enter Laughing, The Musical), Samuel Cohen (Oh, Calcutta!), David Edwards (The Fantasticks), Leo Ash Evens (West Side Story, London), Susan J. Jacks (Forbidden Broadway), and Tina Stafford (I Married Wyatt Earp).Ionescopade will begin performances January 23, 2012, with an official opening night set for February 2 at The York Theatre at Saint Peter's on 54th St, just east of Lexington Avenue.

Ionescopade, taken from the works of Eugene Ionesco, features music and lyrics by Mildred Kayden and was originally conceived by Robert Allan Ackerman. Ionescopade will be directed and choreographed by Bill Castellino, with music direction by Christopher McGovern, scenic design by James Morgan, costume design by Nicole Wee, and lighting design by Mary Jo Dondlinger. Casting is by Carol Hanzel.

Marking their year-long "Celebration of Off-Broadway," York presents a new look at this entertainment based on the works of the prolific and influential absurdist playwright Eugene Ionesco, famous for his plays The Bald Soprano, Rhinoceros, The Chairs and Exit the King (which recently enjoyed a hit revival on Broadway). Plays, playlets, and poetry by this Master of the Absurd transport us into a zany musical vaudeville, where humor is the antidote to the world's realities. Ionescopade, a musical vaudeville, premiered Off-Broadway in 1974, directed by Mr. Ackerman, and ran for almost a year at various theatres in New York City. It subsequently ran for over a year in Los Angeles directed by Mr. Castellino and has been seen around the world in various productions. In 1994 The York produced a reading featuring Ruby Dee and Barbara Feldon; the following year The Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. presented a revival starring Lilianne Montevecchi and Ron Holgate, which was also directed by Mr. Castellino. Critics referred to the original production as "one hell of an entertainment" that "snaps, crackles and spins across the stage like a Toulouse-Lautrec version of Hellzapoppin."

Tickets to Ionescopade are $67.50 and are available online at, by calling (212) 935-5820, or in person at the box office at the York Theatre at Saint Peter's (enter on 54th Street, just East of Lexington), Monday through Friday (12-6 PM), and are currently on sale through February 26.

The York Theatre Company is the only theater in New York City-and one of very few in the world-dedicated to developing and fully producing new musicals and preserving neglected, notable shows from the past. Over the past two seasons, York productions and artists have been nominated for a combined 19 Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League, Off Broadway Alliance, AUDELCO and Callaway Awards (and its productions of Yank! A WWII Love Story and Enter Laughing, The Musical have both been announced for Broadway). For over four decades, York's intimate, imaginative style of producing both original and neglected classic musicals has resulted in critical acclaim and recognition from artists and audiences alike. Under the guidance of Producing Artistic Director James Morgan since 1997, the York has focused exclusively on new musicals in its Mainstage Series-most of them world, American, or New York premieres-by some of the field's most esteemed creators, and has also helped launch the careers of many talented new writers. Over 35 cast recordings from The York Theatre Company productions are now available on CD, and commercial transfers of such York premieres as The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!), Souvenir, Jolson & Company, and its acclaimed revivals of Sweeney Todd and Pacific Overtures have all showcased the importance of the York and its programs.

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