Darko Tresnjak Helms Anastasia Barzee in KISS ME, KATE at The Old Globe; Full Cast, Creative Team Announced!
The complete cast and creative team have been announced for The Old Globe's presentation of Kiss Me, Kate, the classic musical comedy featuring a book by Sam and Bella Spewack and an iconic score by Cole Porter.
This spectacular revival, a co-production with Hartford Stage, is choreographed by Peggy Hickey and directed by Hartford Stage Artistic Director and former Old Globe Shakespeare Festival Artistic Director Darko Tresnjak, who won the 2014 Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical for A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, which made its world premiere at The Old Globe and Hartford Stage in 2013.
The Hartford Stage engagement ran May 14 - June 14; The Old Globe engagement will begin performances on July 1 and run through August 2, with opening night on Thursday, July 9 at 8:00 p.m., on the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the Old Globe Theatre, part of the Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center.
Following the backstage antics of a touring production of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, the Globe's production of Kiss Me, Kate runs concurrently with the theatre's annual Shakespeare Festival and continues the Globe's 80th Anniversary festivities as part of the Balboa Park Centennial Celebration. Single tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park.
Fresh off his Tony Award-winning smash, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Darko Tresnjak returns to the Globe to helm one of the greatest romantic musical comedies of all time. Cole Porter's witty and high-spirited songs will transport you into the wings as a touring company gets ready to open a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew, starring a divorced couple whose offstage battles threaten to bring down the curtain. This beloved classic features show-stopping dance numbers, Shakespeare-quoting mobsters, and a knockout score including "Another Op'nin', Another Show," "Wunderbar," "So In Love," and "Brush Up Your Shakespeare." Get ready for a sizzling summer evening that's simply "Too Darn Hot"!
Mike McGowan (Priscilla Queen of the Desert on Broadway) and Anastasia Barzee (Urinetown on Broadway) star as former lovers and reluctant co-stars Fred/Petruchio and Lilli/Kate. The cast also features Megan Sikora as Lois/Bianca (Curtains on Broadway) and Tyler Hanes as Bill/Lucentio (A Chorus Line on Broadway), Joel Blum as First Man (Tony Award nominee for Show Boat and Steel Pier) and Brendan Averett as Second Man (The Killer at Theatre for a New Audience), and Tony Lawson as General Harrison Howell (LES MISERABLES on Broadway). The marvelous company also includes Giovanni Bonaventura as Hortensio (Cinderella on Broadway), James T. Lane as Paul (The Scottsboro Boys on Broadway), Barrett Martin as Gremio (Side Show on Broadway), Robin Masella as Momo (Chicago national tour), Shina Ann Morris as Venetia (Cinderella on Broadway), Jane Papageorge as Becki Weckio (Hair at the Hollywood Bowl), Wayne W. Pretlow as Pops/Priest (The Most Happy Fella at City Center Encores!), Mike Sears as Ralph (the Globe's Othello), Michael Starr as Philip (Guys and Dolls in L.A.), Jeff Steitzer as Harry Trevor/Baptista Minola (The Front Page at Long Wharf Theatre), Johnny Stellard as Nathaniel (Evita on Broadway), and Aurelia Williams as Hattie (Off Broadway hit Sistas the Musical).
The creative team includes Alexander Dodge (Scenic Design), Fabio Toblini (Costume Design), Philip S. Rosenberg (Lighting Design), Jonathan Deans (Sound Design), Kris Kukul (Music Director), Jason Allen (Wig Design), Claudia Hill-Sparks (Vocal and Text Coach), J. Allen Suddeth (Fight Director), Binder Casting (Casting), Max Mamon (Associate Music Director), and Anjee Nero (Production Stage Manager).
"Kiss Me, Kate is one of the great musicals, full of charm, wit, and fun," said Old Globe Artistic Director Barry Edelstein. "I can't think of a more entertaining show to place at the center of our celebratory Summer Season, and I can't think of a better director than my friend and colleague Darko Tresnjak to helm it. I'm looking forward to every second."
"I started thinking about directing Kiss Me, Kate in 1990, when the influential album Red Hot + Blue: A Tribute to Cole Porter introduced his smart and sexy music to a whole new generation," said Darko Tresnjak. "After 25 years, I'm thrilled to finally get a chance to direct this supreme entertainment-a piece in which my two great theatrical passions, the plays of William Shakespeare and the American musical theatre, come together."
The original 1949 production of Kiss Me, Kate ran for more than 1,000 performances on Broadway and won the first Tony Award for Best Musical. It was recently announced that the cast album will be added to the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry.
In addition to Kiss Me, Kate, the legendary Cole Porter's shows included Anything Goes, Can-Can, Silk Stockings, and DuBarry Was a Lady. Husband-and-wife writing team Sam and Bella Spewack's credits include the films My Favorite Wife (Academy Award nomination) and Week-End at the Waldorf starring Ginger Rogers, as well as the play My Three Angels. The Spewacks each won two Tony Awards for Kiss Me, Kate.
Darko Tresnjak won the Tony, the Drama Desk, the Outer Critics Circle, the Connecticut Critics Circle, and the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Craig Noel Awards for his direction of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder. He recently won the Obie Award for his direction of The Killer, with Michael Shannon, at Theatre for a New Audience. His favorite Old Globe credits include The Women,Cyrano de Bergerac, and Pericles. His recent directing credits include Hamlet at Hartford Stage, where he is the Artistic Director, and The Ghosts of Versailles, with Patti LuPone, at LA Opera. Tresnjak's pcoming productions include the stage thriller Rear Window and the world premiere musical Anastasia, both at Hartford Stage, and the national tour of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.
Peggy Hickey made her Broadway debut with A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, which she also choreographed in the show's world premiere at The Old Globe and Hartford Stage. Her New York theatre credits include The Most Happy Fella, La Rondine, Lucky to Be Me (the Leonard Bernstein tribute at New York City Center), My Fair Lady, Hansel und Gretel ("Live from Lincoln Center"), Antony and Cleopatra, and Babes in Toyland. Her regional credits include Carnival, Amour, A Little Night Music, King of Hearts, On the Twentieth Century, and Brigadoon (Goodspeed Musicals), among others. Her film and television credits include The Brady Bunch Movie and the music video for Beck's "The New Pollution" (MTV Video Music Award).
TICKETS to The Old Globe's engagement of Kiss Me, Kate are currently available as part of a Season Package. Single tickets start at $39 and are now on sale. Subscription prices for the 2015 Summer Season range from $97 to $346. Subscription packages and single tickets may be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE, or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park.
Performances begin on July 1 and continue through August 2. Performance times: Previews: Wednesday, July 1 at 7:00 p.m., Thursday, July 2 at 8:00 p.m., Friday, July 3 at 8:00 p.m., Sunday, July 5 at 7:00 p.m., Monday, July 6 at 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, July 7 at 7:00 p.m., and Wednesday, July 8 at 7:00 p.m. Opening night is Thursday, July 9 at 8:00 p.m. Regular Performances: Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m., Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday evenings at 7:00 p.m. There will be no performance on Saturday, July 25, and there will be an 8:00 p.m. performance on Monday, July 27. Discounts are available for full-time students, patrons 29 years of age and under, seniors, and groups of 10 or more.
Additional events taking place during the run of Kiss Me, Kate include:
INSIGHTS SEMINAR: Tuesday, July 7 at 5:30 p.m.
The seminar series features a panel selected from the current show. Reception at 5:00 p.m. FREE
POST-SHOW FORUMS: Tuesday, July 14, Wednesday, July 15, and Tuesday, July 21.
Discuss the play with members of the cast and crew following the performance. FREE
CAST & CREATIVE TEAM BIOGRAPHIES:
Brendan Averett (Second Man) appeared Off Broadway in Titus Andronicus (New York Shakespeare Exchange), The Killer and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Theatre for a New Audience), As You Like It (Shakespeare in the Park), Massacre (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), Hamlet (The Gallery Players), and Passion Play (Epic Theatre Ensemble). His tours include Guys and Dolls, and his regional credits include Romeo and Juliet (Actors Theatre of Louisville), Of Mice and Men and As You Like It (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Passion Play (Yale Repertory Theatre, Goodman Theatre), Cyrano de Bergerac and As You Like It (A Noise Within), The Tempest (Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum), Henry V (The California Shakespeare Company), Bloody Poetryand The Alchemist (Everyman Theatre), and A Midsummer Night's Dream, Measure for Measure, The Brothers Karamazov, and The Swanne: Queen Victoria (The Seduction of Nemesis) (Stratford Festival). His television and film credits include "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," Trapped in the Closet, and "Blossom."
Anastasia Barzee (Lilli Vanessi/Kate) has starred on Broadway in Henry IV, Parts I and II with Kevin Kline, as Hope in Urinetown, as Emma in Jekyll & Hyde, and as Ellen in Miss Saigon. She created the role of Josephine in Napoleon on the West End (also cast album). Her other credits include Lorna in Golden Boy (City Center Encores!) and Hope In Anything Goes, Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella, and Jenny in Company (Reprise Theatre Company in Los Angeles). Ms. Barzee created the role of Betty Hanes in the premiere of Irving Berlin's White Christmas (also cast album); appeared in the premiere of Sunset Boulevard with Glenn Close (also cast album); and played Beth in The Kennedy Center's Sondheim Celebration production of Merrily We Roll Along, Mallory in the Los Angeles and first national tour productions of City of Angels, and others. Ms. Barzee's films include Doug Liman's Fair Game opposite Sean Penn, Those Who Wander (to be released this fall), and Confessions (in post-production), and her television credits include guest starring and recurring roles on "Elementary," "The Blacklist," "Blue Bloods," "Younger," "Golden Boy," "White Collar," "Made in Jersey," "666 Park Avenue," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Law & Order," the movie of the week Murder She Wrote: A Story to Die For, "Days of Our Lives," "Herman's Head," "Get a Life," and others. She also recorded a solo album, The Dimming of The Day, released on Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records.
Joel Blum (First Man) has appeared on Broadway in Showboat (Tony Award nomination for Featured Actor in a Musical), Steel Pier (Tony Award nomination for Featured Actor in a Musical), as Marcellus in The Music Man, the original production of 42nd Street directed by Gower Champion, Stardust, Elaine May's After the Night and the Music, A Christmas Carol, and Debbie. His Off Broadway credits include Golf: The Musical (Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical), And the World Goes 'Round, and Game Show, and his tour credits include Billy Elliot: The Musical, Doctor Doolittle starring Tommy Tune (also associate choreographer), 101 Dalmatians, And the World Goes 'Round, and Annie Get Your Gun starring Debbie Reynolds. Blum has been seen regionally in Tin Pan Alley Rag (Barrymore Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Musical), Meet John Doe (Helen Hayes Award nomination), Damn Yankees with Tony Randall, and Pal Joey with Lena Horne. His film and television credits include Those Lips, Those Eyes, "Ed," "The Sopranos," two Bob Hope specials, "The Sonny and Cher Show," "The Tonight Show," and "Law & Order" twice.
Giovanni Bonaventura (Actor/Hortensio/Gregory, Riley) appeared in the Broadway production of Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella and the national tour of Elf. Bonaventura's regional theatre credits include Somewhere in Time (New York City workshop, Portland Center Stage), Pippin (American Repertory Theater), and Damn Yankees (Paper Mill Playhouse).
Tyler Hanes (Bill Calhoun/Lucentio) has been seen on Broadway in A Chorus Line, Hairspray, Sweet Charity, The Frogs, The Boy from Oz, Urban Cowboy, and Oklahoma!, as well as the first national tour of Fosse. His Off Broadway credits include A Bed and A Chair: A New York Love Affair (New York City Center) and Juno (City Center Encores!). His regional credits include Mary Poppins, LES MISERABLES, and The Drowsy Chaperone (Maine State Music Theatre), On the Town (Paper Mill Playhouse), Spamalot (Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera), Footloose (Jeff Award nomination) and All Shook Up (The Marriott Theatre), Cabaret (Theatre Under The Stars), The Studio (Signature Theatre Company), and 42nd Street (Paramount Theatre). Hanes appeared in the films In the Blood, Phoebe in Wonderland, Rose, and the upcoming Hail, Caesar! His television credits include "30 Rock," "Dancing with the Stars," "One Life to Live," Kristin Chenoweth: Coming Home, "The Tony Awards," and the upcoming "Ms. Guidance."
James T. Lane (Paul, Innkeeper) last appeared at the Globe in The Scottsboro Boys. His recent credits include The Scottsboro Boys (West End, Young Vic) and A Chorus Line (London Palladium); both shows received Olivier Award nominations. His Broadway credits include The Scottsboro Boys, Chicago, and A Chorus Line, and his national tour credits include Jersey Boys, Cinderella with Eartha Kitt, and Fame the Musical. His favorite regional shows and theatres include Once on this Island (Olney Theatre Center), Dreamgirls (Prince Music Theater), Finian's Rainbow (Walnut Street Theatre), and The Wiz (Dallas Theater Center). Lane has also appeared in concerts with The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, and Naples Philharmonic.
Tony Lawson (General Harrison Howell, Stagehand) appeared on Broadway in LES MISERABLES and Off Broadway in Kismet (Equity Library Theatre) and The Case of Mary Todd Lincoln (York Theatre Company). His national tour credits include Damn Yankees with Dick Van Dyke, 42nd Street with Loretta Swit, White Christmas, LES MISERABLES, Beauty and the Beast, and Ken Hill'sPhantom of the Opera. Lawson has been seen regionally in On the Twentieth Century (Goodspeed Musicals), Lone Star Love (The 5th Avenue Theatre), An American in Paris (Alley Theatre),Treasure Island (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), The Music Man (Arena Stage), Lend Me a Tenor (Fulton Theatre), Oliver! (Paper Mill Playhouse), She Loves Me (Alliance Theatre), Crazy for You (Riverside Theatre), Chicago (Northern Stage), The Fantasticks (Music Theatre of Connecticut), The Sound of Music (The Wick Theatre), and Barnum (Westchester Broadway Theatre).
Barrett Martin (Actor/Gremio, Flynt) has numerous Broadway credits that include the 2014 revival of Side Show, Nice Work If You Can Get It, the 2011 revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, The Addams Family, the 2009 revival of Guys and Dolls, Young Frankenstein, Wicked, and Urban Cowboy. His national tour credits include Movin' Out, Wicked (Chicago),Footloose, and Copacabana. His Off Broadway credits include Follies and Stairway to Paradise (City Center Encores!), and his regional credits include Side Show (La Jolla Playhouse, The Kennedy Center) and Anything Goes (Kansas City Starlight Theatre). Martin has been seen on film and television in Ted 2, The Producers, "The Miraculous Year" (HBO pilot), "The Kennedy Center Honors," and "Saturday Night Live."
Robin Masella (Actress/Momo) appeared in the national tours of Evita and Chicago, where she understudied the role of Roxie. Masella made her New York theatre debut in Candide at Lincoln Center, and her numerous regional theatre credits include productions with Sacramento Music Circus, Goodspeed Musicals, Theatre Under The Stars, and Kansas City Starlight Theatre. Some of her favorite productions include Carnival, Spamalot, Crazy for You, and Disney's The Little Mermaid. She was also seen in a Ford Fusion commercial for the season two premiere of NBC's hit television series "Smash."
Mike McGowan (Fred Graham/Petruchio) appeared on Broadway in The Producers, The Apple Tree, the revival of Ragtime, Grease, and Priscilla Queen of the Desert. He was also seen in the national tours of The Book of Mormon and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. His Off Broadway and New York credits include Grey Gardens (Playwrights Horizons), Macbeth(NativeAliens Theatre Collective), Bernstein Mass Project (Carnegie Hall), and Thou Swell (New York City Ballet). Regionally he has been seen in First Wives Club (Oriental Theatre in Chicago),South Pacific and Kiss Me, Kate (Paper Mill Playhouse, Music Theatre Wichita), Carnival (Goodspeed Musicals), Master Class (Paper Mill Playhouse), Candide (The 5th Avenue Theatre), Mudand Life's a Dream (Ten Thousand Things), Jekyll & Hyde (Music Circus), Cabaret (Theatre Under The Stars), The Who's Tommy (Bay Street Theater), and A Little Night Music (Stages St. Louis). McGowan's film and television credits include Big Words, The Dark Rite, The Producers, "Curb Your Enthusiasm," "The New Electric Company," and "Delocated."
Shina Ann Morris (Actress/Venetia) has several Broadway credits, including Star to Be in Annie, Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella, Nice Work If You Can Get It, Erma understudy in Anything Goes, and Consuela in West Side Story. Her other New York credits include Bells Are Ringing and The Most Happy Fella (City Center Encores!).
Jane Papageorge (Actress/Becki Weckio) has performed regionally in numerous productions, including Hair (Hollywood Bowl), Scary Musical the Musical (NoHo Arts Center), Company(Cabrillo Music Theatre), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Musical Theatre Guild), A Chorus Line and Oklahoma! (Musical Theatre West), How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Musical Theatre West's Reiner Staged Reading Series), Guys and Dolls (Freud Playhouse), Young Frankenstein (Moonlight Stage Productions), and Irving Berlin's White Christmas (Norris Theatre).
Wayne W. Pretlow (Pops, Priest) began acting at age 16 and performed in the Hartford Stage summer youth theatre productions of Kiss Me, Kate and Anything Goes. His Broadway and Off Broadway credits include The Civil War (St. James Theatre), A Christmas Carol (Madison Square Garden), and The Most Happy Fella, St. Louis Women starring Vanessa L. Williams, and Golden Boy (City Center's Encores!). Regionally he appeared in the original production of The Dream Team starring S. Epatha Merkerson, Reginald VelJohnson, and James McDaniel (Goodspeed Musicals) as well as Guys and Dolls (Arena Stage, North Shore Music Theatre; 2000 Helen Hayes Award nominee for Outstanding Supporting Performer, Resident Musical; IRNE Award winner). Pretlow's film credits include The Accident, Next Stop Wonderland (Cannes Film Festival award winner), and In Retrospect written and directed by Logan Coles. He has been seen on television in "The Good Wife," "The Sopranos," "Law & Order," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Person of Interest," "Nurse Jackie," and over 100 national commercials.
Mike Sears (Ralph) last appeared at the Globe in Othello. He has appeared Off Broadway in When Words Fail (John Houseman Theatre), Leap (Abingdon Theatre Company), and To Have and to Hold (Phil Bosakowski Theatre). His Off Off Broadway credits include American Globe Theatre, Boomerang Theatre Company's Summer Shakespeare, New Dramatists, New York International Fringe Festival, The Present Company, Musical Theatre Works, Producer's Club Theatres, and The Duplex. His regional credits include Sideways, His Girl Friday, Hands on a Hard Body, andBonnie & Clyde (La Jolla Playhouse), A Behanding in Spokane and Man from Nebraska (Cygnet Theatre Company), Tortilla Curtain (San Diego Repertory Theatre), Killer Joe (Compass Theatre),The Foreigner, The Glory Man, and Rehearsal for Murder (Lamb's Players Theatre), Birds of a Feather (Diversionary Theatre), Simpatico (New Village Arts), Good Boys (Mo'olelo Performing Arts Company), and Tuesdays with Morrie (North Coast Repertory Theatre).
Megan Sikora (Lois Lane/Bianca) recently won a Connecticut Critics Circle Award for this role at Hartford Stage. She has numerous Broadway credits including The Nance; How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying; Promises, Promises; Bambi in Curtains; Wicked; Dracula, the Musical; Wonderful Town; Thoroughly Modern Millie; and 42nd Street. In addition, her national tour credits include Adelaide in Guys and Dolls and Judy in Irving Berlin's White Christmas. Her Off Broadway credits include Under My Skin, Andrew Lippa's The Wild Party, and four productions with City Center Encores! Her regional credits include Can-Can and Oklahoma! (Paper Mill Playhouse), Anything Goes (Kansas City Starlight Theatre), A Chorus Line (Ogunquit Playhouse), and productions with Music Circus and Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera. She has been seen in film and television in Ted 2, "Boardwalk Empire," and "Important Things with Demetri Martin." Sikora received received an Ovation Award nomination for Featured Actress in a Musical as Bambi Bernet in Curtains.
Michael Starr (Actor/Philip, Cab Driver, Chauffeur) appeared in the L.A. premiere of Carrie the Musical (La Mirada Theatre), A Charlie Brown Christmas - Live! (San Francisco Symphony), Big Fish and Oklahoma! (Musical Theatre West), Psyche: A Modern Rock Opera (Greenway Court Theatre), Irving Berlin's White Christmas (Norris Theatre), Barefoot in the Park, Murder Among Friends, The Rocky Horror Show, Legally Blonde, Grease, Spamalot, West Side Story, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Forestburgh Playhouse), and Babes in Arms and Steel Pier (Musical Theatre West's Reiner Staged Reading Series). He is a graduate of UCLA's Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program.
Jeff Steitzer (Harry Trevor/Baptista Minola) last appeared at The Old Globe in Misalliance. He was previously seen on Broadway in Inherit the Wind and Mary Poppins. He appeared Off Broadway in The Power of Darkness (Mint Theater Company) and regionally in Five Presidents and Xanadu (Arizona Theatre Company), Little Shop of Horrors and The Music Man (The 5th Avenue Theatre), Assisted Living (A Contemporary Theatre), Safe in Hell (Yale Repertory Theatre), John Bull's Other Island (Geva Theatre), and Inspecting Carol (Seattle Repertory Theatre). His film and television credits include "The Fugitive," The Beaver, "Law & Order," "30 Rock," and Georgia. He is also the multiplayer announcer for all Microsoft "Halo" games.
Johnny Stellard (Dance Captain/Biondello/Nathaniel) appeared on Broadway in Evita (also national tour) and Off Broadway in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn at Theatre at St. Clement's. Stellard's regional appearances include The Drowsy Chaperone (North Carolina Theatre), A Christmas Carol (Arkansas Repertory Theatre), The Music Man (Geva Theatre), and Curtains, My Fair Lady, andLES MISERABLES (Music Theatre Wichita). Stellard performed on television for "Great Performances" and "The 66th Annual Tony Awards."
Aurelia Williams (Hattie, Mistress of the Inn) is currently taking a break from the Off Broadway hit Sistas the Musical to join this production. You also might catch her on an episode of truTV's new sketch comedy show, "Friends of the People." Her favorite credits include Motormouth Maybelle in Hairspray, Effie in Dreamgirls, Jewel in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Ethel Toffelmeir in The Music Man, Asaka in Once on This Island, The Radio in Caroline, or Change, Katisha in The Hot Mikado, various roles in All Shook Up, and Gloria the Hippo in Madagascar Live!
Cole Porter (Music and Lyrics) was born in Peru, Indiana in 1891. He attended Yale University, where his football songs are still popular. After his first Broadway show bombed, he exiled himself to Europe and married legendary beauty Linda Thomas. Returning to New York in the late 1920s, he gained renown as the composer of some of the greatest songs ever heard on stage or screen, among them "Night and Day," "You're the Top," "Begin the Beguine," "Don't Fence Me In," and "Love for Sale." The 1930s were highlighted by Anything Goes, Gay Divorce, Jubilee, and Born to Dance. A crippling accident in 1937 left him in constant pain, yet he continued to write memorable scores, among them Can-Can, Silk Stockings, and his masterpiece, Kiss Me, Kate. He died in 1964.
Sam and Bella Spewack (Book) met while working as newspaper reporters: for him, The World, and for her, The Call. He attended Columbia University in 1919, while she chronicled her early years in the autobiography Streets: A Memoir of the Lower East Side, which was published posthumously in 1995 by Feminist Press. The couple married in 1922. They wrote their first play together, Solitaire Man, in 1926, which was followed by their first collaboration with Cole Porter, 1932's Clear the Wires (which later become Leave It to Me!). Boy Meets Girl was written in 1935. They wrote some 20 films together, including the notable Weekend at the Waldorf and My Favorite Wife, which earned them an Academy Award nomination. Kiss Me, Kate, a musical collaboration with Porter, won the Spewacks the first ever Tony Award given for the book of a musical. Their other credits as a writing team include Two Blind Mice, My 3 Angels, Festival, Mr. Broadway, andOnce There Was a Russian.
Darko Tresnjak (Director) became, in 2011, only the fifth Artistic Director to lead Hartford Stage. Since then the theatre has presented the world premieres of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder at The Old Globe and on Broadway, winner of four 2014 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Direction of a Musical by Tresnjak; Quiara Alegría Hudes's Water by the Spoonful, winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama; Breath & Imagination by Daniel Beaty; and Big Dance Theater's Man in a Case with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Tresnjak was the Artistic Director of the Old Globe Shakespeare Festival in San Diego from 2004 to 2009. His directing credits at the Globe include Cyrano de Bergerac, Coriolanus, The Women, The Pleasure of His Company, All's Well That Ends Well, Hamlet, Titus Andronicus, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Winter's Tale, A Comedy of Errors, Antony and Cleopatra, The Two Noble Kinsmen, Pericles, and Bell, Book and Candle. He received four awards from the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle: for Outstanding Direction of Cyrano de Bergerac, The Winter's Tale, and Pericles and for Excellence in Artistic Direction. Tresnjak's directing career began at Williamstown Theatre Festival where, over eight seasons, he directed The Skin of Our Teeth, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, The Love of Three Oranges, Princess Turandot, The Blue Demon, The Winter's Tale, Moving Picture, and Under Milk Wood. He has also directed at The Public Theater, Theatre for a New Audience, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Vineyard Theatre, and Blue Light Theater Company. From 2002-2004 he was Director-in-Residence at Boston's Huntington Theatre Company where his productions included What the Butler Saw, Heartbreak House, and Amphitryon. Tresnjak grew up in Yugoslavia, the United States, and Poland. He was educated at Swarthmore College and Columbia University and became an American citizen shortly after graduation. Between college and graduate school, he studied at the Martha Graham School, performed with numerous Philadelphia dance and theatre companies, and toured across the United States and Japan with Mum Puppettheatre. He is the recipient of grants from Theatre Communications Group, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, as well as the Alan Schneider Award for Directing Excellence.
Peggy Hickey (Choreography) choreographed the Old Globe and Hartford Stage production of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, which is currently running on Broadway and won four Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Hickey received Outer Critics Circle and Astaire Award nominations for her work. Her Off Broadway credits include Antony and Cleopatra (Theatre for a New Audience), and her other New York credits include Hansel and Gretel, La Rondine, The Most Happy Fella, My Fair Lady, and Lincoln Center's Lucky to Be Me: The Music of Leonard Bernstein. Her regional credits inculde Carnival, Amour, A Little Night Music, Brigadoon, King of Hearts, and On The Twentieth Century (Goodspeed Musicals), Oklahoma! (Paper Mill Playhouse), Oliver!, Fiddler on the Roof, Brigadoon, and Carousel (California Musical Theatre), and The Music Man (The Bushnell). She also choreographed The King and I at Théâtre du Châteletin Paris. Hickey's opera credits include work with LA Opera, San Francisco Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Seattle Opera, New York City Opera, Chicago Lyric Opera, Dallas Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Hong Kong Arts Festival, and Savonlinna Opera Festival. Her film and television credits include The Brady Bunch Movie, "Samantha Who?," "90210," "Hot in Cleveland," "General Hospital," and "Day of Our Lives." Hickey serves on the faculty of UCLA's Ray Bolger Musical Theater Program. She has received Connecticut Critics Circle Awards for Outstanding Choreography for Brigadoon and On the Twentieth Century as well as an MTV Video Music Award for Best Choreography for Beck's "The New Pollution."
Alexander Dodge (Scenic Design) designed A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder at The Old Globe, Hartford Stage, and on Broadway, where he received Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Award nominations. His other Broadway credits include Present Laughter (Tony nomination), Old Acquaintance, Butley, and Hedda Gabler. His Off Broadway credits include Lips Together, Teeth Apart, Modern Terrorism, All New People, Trust, and The Water's Edge (Second Stage Theatre), Maple and Vine and Rapture, Blister, Burn (Playwrights Horizons), The Understudy (Roundabout Theatre Company), Paris Commune and Measure for Pleasure (The Public Theater), Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme (Lucille Lortel Award) andChaucer in Rome (Lincoln Center Theater), and Antony and Cleopatra (Theatre for a New Audience). Dodge also designed the West End production of All New People. His opera credits includeThe Ghosts of Versailles (LA Opera), La Rondine (Opera Theatre of Saint Louis), An American Tragedy (Glimmerglass Opera), Il Trittico (Deutsche Oper Berlin), and Lohengrin (Budapest State Opera). Dodge will next design Ripcord for Manhattan Theatre Club. He has received a Connecticut Critics Circle Award, two Elliot Norton Awards, and three IRNE Awards.
Fabio Toblini (Costume Design) previously designed the Globe productions of The Pleasure of His Company and The Two Gentlemen of Verona. His past credits with Hartford Stage includeHamlet, A Song at Twilight, Breath & Imagination, Hedda Gabler, The Tempest, and Bell, Book and Candle. His recent credits include Romeo and Juliet (Broadway), A Midsummer Night's Dreamand My Fair Lady (Guthrie Theater), Alexandre Bis and Comedy on the Bridge (Gotham Chamber Opera), and L'Impresario and Le Rossignol (Santa Fe Opera). Toblini has also designed musicals and plays at Long Wharf Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals, Alley Theatre, American Players Theatre, Children's Theatre Company, Ford's Theatre, and The Studio Theatre. His further opera credits include works for Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Wexford Festival Opera, De Nationale Reisopera, Salzburger Landestheater, and Portland Opera. He designed the Off Broadway premieres ofHedwig and the Angry Inch, Bat Boy: The Musical, Freckleface Strawberry, and The Divine Sister, as well as the national tours of The Creature from the Black Lagoon, Jesus Christ Superstar,Fame, and Godspell. For ballet he has designed Ib Andersen's Diversions and The Nutcracker, played every year at Ballet Arizona, and Romeo and Juliet for Dominic Walsh Dance Theater. Toblini received Connecticut Critics Circle Awards for Bell, Book and Candle and The Tempest, an Irene Sharaff Young Master Award, and a Lucille Lortel Award nomination.
Philip S. Rosenberg (Lighting Design) previously designed the Globe productions of Buyer & Cellar, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Pygmalion, and The Recommendation. His Broadway credits include The Elephant Man, It's Only a Play, and A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder. His Off Broadway credits include The Explorers Club and Cactus Flower. His other regional theatre credits include Hartford Stage, The Kennedy Center, La Jolla Playhouse, Ford's Theatre, Guthrie Theater, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Manhattan School of Music, Portland Stage, The Actors Company Theatre, Barrington Stage Company, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Dorset Theatre Festival, Bay Street Theater, Two River Theater Company, George Street Playhouse, and Westport Country Playhouse. Rosenberg has served as associate lighting designer of more than 35 Broadway plays and musicals.
Jonathan Deans (Sound Design) previously designed the Globe's world premiere of Allegiance - A New American Musical. His work spans from Royal Opera House in Covent Garden to Michael Jackson: One in Las Vegas. His Broadway credits include Finding Neverland, Pippin (Tony Award nomination), Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, La Cage aux Folles(Tony and Drama Desk Award nomination), Young Frankenstein, The Pirate Queen, Lestat, Taboo, Follies, Seussical, Beauty and the Beast, The Music Man, Fosse, Candide, King David, and the original production of Ragtime. His numerous Off Broadway credits include A Second Chance at The Public Theater, Carrie (Drama Desk nomination), and Parade (Drama Desk nomination). He has also designed opera, plays, and productions on the West End. His work with Cirque du Soleil includes One, Love, Ka, Criss Angel Believe, Viva Elvis, Zumanity, O, Mystère, La Nouba, Wintuk, Ovo, Corteo, and Saltimbanco. Deans was presented with the USITT Award for Distinguished Achievement in Sound and has received a number of other awards.
Kris Kukul (Music Director) was most recently at the Globe with the world premiere of The Last Goodbye. His current and recent projects include The Heart of Robin Hood (Toronto, American Repertory Theater), David Byrne's St. Joan (The Public Theater), June Moon and Animal Crackers (Williamstown Theatre Festival), My Depression (HBO Films), The Nomad (The Flea Theater),From the Fire (Edinburgh Festival Fringe), In the Footprint (The Civilians), and Revolting Rhymes (Atlantic Theater Company/Lucille Lortel Theatre). Kukul has served as Music Director of Williamstown Theatre Festival for 10 seasons, including their Late-Night Cabarets. He has composed music for Wing It! and Camp Monster (Williamstown), Beauty Queen (3Graces Theater Co.),Dash Dexter (Manhattan Theatre Club), and A Midsummer Night's Dream (National Theatre of Greece). His further international work includes La MaMa Cantata (Tokyo, Istanbul, Skopje, Japan, Spoleto, Zagreb, Belgrade), Heracles directed by Andrei Serban, Bokan (Festival Iberoamericano de Teatro de Bogotá), The Bacchae (Warsaw), and The Frogs (Epidaurus Festival).
Binder Casting (Casting) has cast over 70 Broadway shows including A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, The Lion King, Nice Work If You Can Get It, Born Yesterday, The Miracle Worker, Finian's Rainbow, Brighton Beach Memoirs, A Chorus Line, Gypsy, The 39 Steps, Irving Berlin's White Christmas, Is He Dead?, Inherit the Wind, Journey's End, Butley, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Sweet Charity, Wonderful Town, Movin' Out, 42nd Street, The Music Man, The Iceman Cometh, You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, The Sound of Music, Beauty and the Beast, The Last Night of Ballyhoo, Chicago, The King and I, Damn Yankees, Lost in Yonkers, Jerome Robbins' Broadway, The Goodbye Girl, and every City Center Encores! production since its inception in 1994. Their film, television, and other credits include Carousel (New York Philharmonic/PBS), Six by Sondheim (HBO), "So You Think You Can Dance," West Side Story (San Francisco Symphony), Hairspray, Dreamgirls, Chicago, and Nine. Binder Casting is a 10-time Artios Award winner.
Max Mamon (Associate Music Director) worked on the New York and regional productions of Marie Christine (Columbia Stages), Bend in the Road (New York Musical Theatre Festival), Boys Who Tricked Me (Musical Theater Factory), and Into the Woods and Assassins (Arc Stages). His reading credits include First Daughter Suite (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), The Martian Chronicles (Theatre C), Nikola Tesla Drops the Beat, Shades of Wayne, and The Greenwood Tree (Musical Theater Factory), and Sweet Nothings and Rain Down the Ruin (New York University). Mamon trained at Princeton University, Royal College of Music, and NYU's Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. He was also the winner of New York City Center's Sondheim Remix Challenge.
Anjee Nero (Production Stage Manager) has previously worked on the Globe productions of The Twenty-seventh Man, Bright Star, Dog and Pony, The Winter's Tale, Be a Good Little Widow, Allegiance - A New American Musical, A Room with a View, Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show, The Savannah Disputation, Cornelia, Kingdom, and the 2007 Shakespeare Festival. Her selected La Jolla Playhouse credits include Sideways directed by Des McAnuff, Ruined directed by Liesl Tommy, A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Christopher Ashley, and Herringbonedirected by Roger Rees and starring BD Wong. Nero has worked with several prominent regional theatres including Hartford Stage, Center Theatre Group, SITI Company, Huntington Theatre Company, and Berkeley Repertory Theatre, among others. Her other selected credits include Schick Machine (Paul Dresher Ensemble), which has toured nationally and internationally, Dream Report (Allyson Green Dance featuring Lux Borreal), and Garden of Forbidden Loves and Garden of Deadly Sound (IMAGOmoves), both of which toured to the International Hungarian Theatre Festival in Cluj, Romania.
The Tony Award-winning Old Globe is one of the country's leading professional regional theatres and has stood as San Diego's flagship arts institution for over 75 years. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barry Edelstein and Managing Director Michael G. Murphy, The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 14 productions of classic, contemporary, and new works on its three Balboa Park stages: the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the 600-seat Old Globe Theatre and the 250-seat Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, both part of The Old Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, and the 605-seat outdoor Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, home of its internationally renowned Shakespeare Festival. More than 250,000 people attend Globe productions annually and participate in the theatre's education and community programs. Numerous world premieres such as 2014 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, A Catered Affair, and the annual holiday musical Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to enjoy highly successful runs on Broadway and at regional theatres across the country.
Now in its 51st year, Hartford Stage is one of the nation's leading resident theatres, known for producing innovative revivals of classics and provocative new plays and musicals, including 68 world and American premieres, as well as offering a distinguished education program, which reaches more than 20,000 students annually. In 2011, Darko Tresnjak became only the fifth artistic director to lead Hartford Stage. Since then the theatre has presented the world premieres of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder on Broadway, winner of four 2014 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Direction of a Musical by Tresnjak; Quiara Alegría Hudes's Water by the Spoonful, winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama; Breath & Imagination by Daniel Beaty; and Big Dance Theatre's Man in a Case with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Hartford Stage, under the leadership of Managing Director Michael Stotts, has earned many of the nation's most prestigious awards, including its first Tony Award in 1988 for Outstanding Regional Theatre. Other national honors include Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Obie, and New York Critics Circle Awards. Hartford Stage has produced nationally renowned titles, including the New York transfers of Enchanted April, The Orphans' Home Cycle, Resurrection (later retitled Through the Night), The Carpetbagger's Children, and Tea at Five.