John Caird's DADDY LONG LEGS Gets TheatreWorks Run, 1/23 - 2/14
Next up for John Caird's Daddy Long Legs is a production at TheatreWorks Mountainview Center for the Performing Arts beginning January, 2010. The Rubicon Theatre Company opened their 2009-2010 Season with the World Premiere of Caird's new musical in October of this year. Caird is the Tony and Olivier Award-Winning director of Les Misérables and Nicholas Nickleby, and the creators of Jane Eyre. Daddy Long Legs will officially open at TheatreWorks Jan. 23, 2010, and run through Feb. 14, 2010.
Set at the turn of the last century, DADDY LONG LEGS is a coming-of-age story about Jerusha Abbott, an orphan who is given an opportunity to develop her mind and spirit by an anonymous benefactor. A trustee of the John Grier Hall reads an essay by the young Jerusha and offers to send her to college. His only requirements are that Jerusha never know his identity, and that she write him monthly (though he will not respond). She sees him once in shadows and invents a nickname for her mysterious patron-Daddy Long Legs.
Daddy Long Legs has music and lyrics by Paul Gordon, who has written chart-topping pop and country hits in addition to his works for the stage (Jane Eyre/Emma), and an imaginative book by John Caird based on the 1912 novel by Jean Webster (great-niece of Mark Twain). Caird, whose credits include Les Miserables, Nicholas Nickleby, and work as both writer and director for the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company, also helmed the Rubicon production.
Caird is also an Honorary Associate Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), where he has directed over twenty plays. Other work includes Andrew Lloyd Webber's Song and Dance at the Palace Theatre, Mozart's Zaide at the Battignano Opera Festival in Tuscany and the Siegfried and Roy Spectacular in Las Vegas. Television work includes "Nicholas Nickleby," "As You Like It" and his own adaptation of Shakespeare's "Henry IV" for the BBC.
Caird's most recent stage work includes productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Twelfth Night, both for the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, Michael Weller's new play What the Night is For at the Comedy Theatre with Gillian Anderson and Roger Allam, and the transfer of Les Misérables to its new home at the Queen's Theatre. Published work as a book writer, adapter and lyricist includes a new version of John Gay's Beggar's Opera with composer Ilona Sekacz first performed at the RSC, a new adaptation of J.M.Barrie's Peter Pan with Trevor Nunn which played at the RSC and the National, Children of Eden with composer Stephen Schwartz, and Bernstein's Candide with new lyrics by Richard Wilbur and Stephen Sondheim. His new opera Brief Encounter with music by André Previn, based on the Noël Coward screenplay, recently opened to acclaim at the Houston Grand Opera. With Holly Kendrick, Mr. Caird founded the Caird Company to encourage and promote the work of young playwrights and theatre directors. Current Productions include Theatre Café at the Arcola Theatre and The Arab-Israeli Cookbook at the Gate Theatre.
Paul Gordon, who wrote the music and lyrics for Daddy Long Legs, was nominated for a 2000 Tony Award for his score to Jane Eyre which was first presented by the Mirvish organization in Toronto. The production subsequently ran at the La Jolla Playhouse and then moved to Broadway. Gordon's adaptation of the Jane Austen novel Emma was co-produced by Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, TheatreWorks and St. Louis Rep to tremendous acclaim. Gordon wrote and co-directed the independent film "Dirk and Betty," which premiered at the 1999 Hamptons' Film Festival and stars Marisa Tomei, Eric Roberts and Jonathan Silverman.
Gordon has written two #1 songs: "Next Time I Fall" recorded by Peter Cetera and Amy Grant, and "Friends and Lovers," which was #1 on both pop and country charts. Paul has also written for or collaborated with Bette Midler, Quincy Jones, Alanis Morissette, Vonda Shepard, David Foster, Patti LaBelle, Eddie Rabbit, Juice Newton, James Ingram, The Pointer Sisters, Dionne Warwick, Olivia Newton-John, Eddie Money, Kenny Rogers, Smokey Robinson and Kenny G among many others. Gordon has written songs for several films including "Stella," "Ghostbusters II," "Spacecamp," "Twilight Zone, The Movie," "Soul Man" and "The Principle." Paul is the recipient of nine ASCAP Awards. His most recent award was received for the theme to "Ally McBeal," co-written with Vonda Shepard.