New Line Theatre Opens NEXT TO NORMAL, 2/28

New Line Theatre, now in its 22nd season of alternative, adult musical theatre, has announced its cast for the powerhouse Pulitzer Prize winning rock opera NEXT TO NORMAL, running Feb. 28-March 23, 2013 at the Washington University South Campus Theatre.

New Line veteran Kimi Short will play Diana, with Jeffrey M. Wright as Dan, Ryan Foizey as Gabe, newcomers Mary Beth Black as Natalie and Joseph McAnulty as Henry, and New Line's go-to character actor Zachary Allen Farmer as Dr. Madden and Dr. Fine. Artistic director Scott Miller and associate artistic director Mike Dowdy will direct, with costume design by Amy Kelly, lighting design by Sean Savoie, scenic design by Scott L. Schoonover, and musical direction by Justin Smolik. Short and Wright also recently played across from each other as the leads in New Line's critically acclaimed High Fidelity in June.

New Line's season continues with the first St. Louis production of the powerful, thrilling rock musical NEXT TO NORMAL, with music by Tom Kitt and book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey, winner of the Tony Award for best score and the Pulitzer Prize for drama. From the composer of High Fidelity and Bring It On comes the most adult, most mature rock musical to hit Broadway in decades, an unrelentingly intense, brutally honest - and darkly funny - story about a bipolar woman and the family that grapples with her illness, all set to a hard driving rock and roll score that explodes with raw, searing emotion. Rolling Stone called it "the best new musical of the season - by a mile."

The New York Times said about it, "No show on Broadway right now makes as direct a grab for the heart -- or wrings it as thoroughly -- as Next to Normal does. This brave, breathtaking musical focuses squarely on the pain that cripples the members of a suburban family, and never for a minute does it let you escape the anguish at the core of their lives." With its ground-breaking rock score, this is an emotional powerhouse of a musical about a family trying to take care of themselves and each other in the midst of one woman's fierce battle with bipolar disorder. It's one of the most emotional musicals in years.

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