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Tom Jones Restages Darker Version of 'Round and Round' in THE FANTASTICKS

Playwright Tom Jones is making some changes to his 57-year-old musical The Fantasticks. Mr. Jones has done a little bit of rewriting of the musical number "Round and Round" which he has always felt never quite conveyed the darker elements he intended.

Jones says, "The mask, not unlike the Red Shoes, has a darker purpose or power, if you will. I want the feeling of a masked ball that becomes more and more grotesque as Luisa inhabits this world for the first time."

To that end, Tom has changed the dialogue in the number and a few lyrics as well. The number is being restaged and put into the show on Tuesday, May 16th.

The Fantasticks originally opened in 1960. On June 4 (the time of the show's closing) the production will have played a total of 21,552 performances in NYC: 17,162 at the Sullivan Street Playhouse and 4390 performances at Jerry Orbach Theater 1627 Broadway.

A modern twist on Romeo and Juliet, The Fantasticks (music by Harvey Schmidt, book, lyrics, and direction by Tom Jones) is the quintessential story of a boy and girl who fall in love and then quickly grow apart when they realize they want to experience the world. What follows is a hilarious and heartwarming story appropriate for all ages. The score, which includes the hit songs "Try To Remember", "Soon It's Gonna Rain" and "They Were You," is as timeless as the story itself.

During its original run at the Sullivan Street Playhouse in Greenwich Village, The Fantasticks logged a record-breaking 17,162 performances. When the original production closed in 2002, news of the closing made the front page of The New York Times. In 2006, the revival opened at The Theater Center, directed by Tom Jones (author and lyricist). The Fantasticks continues to run at The Theater Center, making record-breaking history with each performance.

The play has become a true New York institution. For many people, seeing The Fantasticks when visiting New York is as important as seeing The Statue of Liberty or The Empire State Building. In fact, Mayor Michael Bloomberg attended the New Year's Eve performance of the show before ringing in 2008 in Times Square. In 1992 The Fantasticks won The Tony Award for Excellence and remains the only Off-Broadway show ever to have won a Tony.

The cast of The Fantasticks features Bradley Dean as El Gallo (The Narrator), Samantha Bruce as Luisa (The Girl), Nathan Goodrich as The Boy (Matt), Dan Sharkey as The Boy's Father (Hucklebee), Dale Hensley as The Girl's Father (Bellomy), MacIntyre Dixon as The Old Actor (Henry), Michael Nostrand as The Man Who Dies (Mortimer) and Aaron Wright as The Mute. The production also features Scott Willis, John Thomas Waite, and Olivia Huntley.

Robert Felstein is the Musical Director / Pianist and Marjorie Fitts is the Harpist. Production Stage Manager is Paul Blankenship and the Assistant Stage Manager isEarlye Rhodes.

THE FANTASTICKS plays at The Jerry Orbach Theater in the Theater Center, 210 West 50th Street at Broadway.

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