York Theatre Company Announces Cast for HALLELUJAH, BABY!

By: Jan. 19, 2018
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York Theatre Company Announces Cast for HALLELUJAH, BABY! It's a Jule Styne Celebration! The York Theatre Company (James Morgan, Producing Artistic Director; Evans Haile, Executive Director), dedicated to the development of new musicals and the preservation of musical gems from the past, has announced Stephanie Umoh (Junk, York's Jerry's Girls,) and two-time Tony Award nominee Vivian Reed (Bubbling Brown Sugar, High Rollers...), will lead the cast of the 1968 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Hallelujah, Baby!

With music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, and book by Arthur Laurents, Hallelujah, Baby! will be the first of three shows in the Winter 2018 Musicals in Mufti Series celebrating the work of composer Jule Styne.

Performances are set to begin Saturday afternoon, January 27, 2018 for 11 performances only through Sunday, February 4, 2018 at the York Theatre Company at Saint Peter's (entrance on East 54th Street, just east of Lexington Avenue). Opening Night is Sunday evening, January 28 at 7:00 p.m.

Directed by Gerry McIntrye (Spamilton), making his Mufti directing debut, and with music direction by David Hancock Turner (Desperate Measures), the cast will feature Stephanie Umoh (York's Jerry's Girls, Junk) as Georgina and two-time Tony Award nominee Vivian Reed (Bubbling Brown Sugar) as Momma, with Jennifer Cody (Shrek, The Musical) as Mary et al., Randy Donaldson (The Scottsboro Boys) as Tap, Bernard Dotson (Chicago) as Tip, Latoya Edwards (Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical) as Chloe et al., Michael Thomas Holmes (Oklahoma!, York's Saturday Night,) as Hutchinson et al., Tally Sessions (War Paint , York's Yank!,) as Harvey, and Max Crumm. The Production Stage Manager is Robert Chikar with Assistant Stage Manager Zija Lubin-West. Casting for the series is by Geoff Josselson.

Hallelujah, Baby! tells of Georgina, an African-American woman on her journey to financial and social independence during the most tumultuous socio-political times in U.S. history. A chronicle of the African-American struggle for equality during the first half of the 20th century, Hallelujah, Baby! launched the career of Broadway and TV legend Leslie Uggams. The rich score includes "My Own Morning," "Talking to Yourself," and "Being Good." This presentation marks the New York premiere of the revised version that Laurents created for productions at the George Street Playhouse and Arena Stage in 2004 and 2005, with additional lyrics by Amanda Green.

The York Theatre Company's acclaimed Musicals in Mufti series of musical theatre gems, performed in a simply-staged, book-in-hand concert format, is celebrating its twenty-second historic year of shows from the past that deserve a second look. Mufti means "in street clothes, without the trappings associated with a full production."

Hallelujah, Baby! will play the following 11-performance schedule- First Week: Saturday at 2:30 p.m. & 8:00 p.m., Sunday at 2:30 & 7:00 p.m.; Second Week: Wednesday at 7:00 p.m., Thursday at 2:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., Friday at 8:00 p.m., Saturday at 2:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. and Sunday at 2:30 p.m.

Second in the series is the rarely-seen Bar Mitzvah Boy, with music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Tony and Oscar winner Don Black, and book by Jack Rosenthal, as adapted by David Thompson. Based on Rosenthal's award-winning 1976 BBC1<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BBC_One> teleplay of the same name<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bar_Mitzvah_Boy>, Bar Mitzvah Boy is a bittersweet musical comedy about a young Jewish boy who runs away from the Bar Mitzvah into which his parents have poured their efforts and their money. Looking at the adult world, young Eliot Green doubts if he can cope with being a part of it. Rosenthal's hysterical story of a family's anxious build up to their only son's Bar Mitzvah will resonate with many Jewish families, but this classic tale speaks loudly for any important family occasion - whatever the religion. Originally produced at Her Majesty's Theatre in the West End in 1978, Bar Mitzvah Boy is composer Jule Styne's only musical written expressly for London, and this presentation marks the New York premiere of a new version first presented in London in 2016, with a book adapted by David Thompson and new songs with lyrics by Black, using previously unheard Styne melodies. Annette Jolles (Mark Felt, Superstar!) directs, with music direction by Jeffrey Saver (Milk and Honey). Performances begin Saturday afternoon, February 10, 2018 for 11 performances only through February 18, 2018.

The Winter 2018 series concludes with the 1961 Broadway musical Subways Are for Sleeping with music by Jule Styne and book and lyrics by Betty Comden<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betty_Comden> and Adolph Green<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adolph_Green>, suggested by the book by Edmund G. Love. Originally produced by David Merrick, Subways tells the tale of Angie, a reporter sent to get the scoop on a segment of NYC society-a group of well-dressed homeless people sleeping in the New York subway system-that lives by their own rules. Going undercover, Angie learns how the carefree other half lives and begins to see there might be another way to experience the world. Subways Are for Sleeping is perhaps best known for an infamous publicity stunt in which Merrick invited New Yorkers with the same names as some of the prominent theatre critics at the time, using their favorable reviews in a print ad. Stuart Ross (Enter Laughing) will direct, with music direction by David Hancock Turner (Desperate Measures). Performances begin Saturday afternoon, February 24, 2018 for 11 performances only through March 4, 2018.

"We are delighted to feature the work of the incredible Jule Styne in our latest Mufti series, and to be working with Margaret Styne on putting it all together," says York's Producing Artistic Director James Morgan. "Jule is one of the true leading lights of the Golden Age of Broadway and, while we have done a number of his shows in the series (Fade Out, Fade In, the original version of Hallelujah, Baby!, and Darling of the Day twice-both times to sold-out houses), this is the first time we have dedicated an entire series to this master composer."

In conjunction with the Winter 2018 Musicals in Mufti series, The York will present two special multimedia presentations by Charles Troy who returns with The Creation of Gypsy and The Creation of Funny Girl, following last year's highly successful Hello, Jerry! presentation. Mr. Troy is a musical theatre historian, graphic designer, and former theatre lyricist who has created more than 50 multimedia presentations on musical theatre subjects. His unique multimedia presentations employ a seamless blend of recorded songs (with lyrics projected onscreen), original graphics, scanned photos, historic video, and extensively researched, scripted narrative to dramatize the stories behind the great creations of the American Musical Theatre. Join Charles Troy and The York Theatre Company as he takes a look at the life and career of the legendary Broadway composer Jule Styne. Presentations are scheduled, as follows: The Creation of Gypsy, Monday, January 29, 2018 and The Creation of Funny Girl, Tuesday, January 30, 2018. Both at 7:30 p.m.

In addition, The York Theatre Company will present an evening of song celebrating the composer's further catalog with a special cabaret, The Music of Jule Styne, conceived and music directed by Ron Abel (Me and Ella; Hazel, A Musical Maid in America) set for Tuesday, February 13, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.

Single tickets for the Winter 2018 Musicals in Mufti series are priced at $45 (Weekdays and Saturday nights) and $50 (Weekend matinees). York Member single tickets are priced at $31.50 (all performances). Single tickets for the Charles Troy multimedia presentations are priced at $20 for each event. Single tickets for the cabaret "The Music of Jule Styne" are priced at $30.

SUBSCRIBE AND SAVE: Subscribe to a Special "Musicals in Mufti" Package and see all three Muftis for $120 (any performance package) - up to a $30 savings!

BEST SAVINGS! Become a York Member: Buy all three Muftis priced at $94.50 (any performance package) - a $55 savings. Add on ticket prices for Charles Troy events and Cabaret are priced at $15 each for York! Members and $10 each for York Plus! Members only.

Singes tickets are now on sale and may be purchased online at www.yorktheatre.org<http://www.yorktheatre.org/>, by calling (212) 935-5820, or in person at the box office at The York Theatre Company at Saint Peter's (Entrance on East 54th Street, just east of Lexington Avenue), Monday through Friday (12:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.).

For additional information, please visit www.yorktheatre.org<http://www.yorktheatre.org>

The York Theatre Company is the only theatre 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. For over four decades, York's intimate, imaginative style of producing both original and 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 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. Almost 40 cast recordings from York Theatre Company productions are now available on CD, including its acclaimed revival of Closer Than Ever (2013 Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Best Revival); commercial transfers of such York premieres as The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!), Souvenir (Tony Award Nomination for actress Judy Kaye), and Jolson & Company, and revivals of Pacific Overtures and Sweeney Todd (four Tony Nominations including Best Revival) have all showcased the importance of The York and its programs. Recent New York premieres have included Marry Harry, A Taste of Things to Come, Rothschild & Sons, and Desperate Measures which just completed a three and a half month extended run. The critically acclaimed musical Yank!, which received its Off-Broadway debut at The York in 2010, recently opened to rave reviews in London, and the hit musical Cagney, which received its York premiere in 2015 and subsequently transferred to The Westside Theatre for over 15 months, has just concluded a limited engagement in Los Angeles.


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