Here’s a quick roundup of stories you might have missed.
Tom Francis to Play Romeo in West End’s & Juliet
There’s a new Romeo in town! Tom Francis has joined the company of the Olivier-nominated & Juliet as Romeo, playing opposite Olivier winner Miriam-Teak Lee as Juliet. Francis will begin performances on March 29, the same day as the previously announced Keala Settle as Nurse and Julius D’Silva as Frenchman Lance. A feminist reimagining of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, the musical was recognized with nine 2020 Olivier Award nominations. & Juliet will have its North American debut at Toronto’s Prince of Wales Theatre beginning June 21.
Full Cast & Creative Team Set for Barry Manilow’s Harmony
The full cast and creative team for Harmony, the long-gestating original musical by Barry Manilow and Bruce Sussman, has been announced. The new musical tells the true story of the Comedian Harmonists, an ensemble of six talented young men in 1920s Germany who took the world by storm with their signature blend of sophisticated close harmonies and uproarious stage antics, until their inclusion of Jewish singers put them on a collision course with history. Playing the six Comedian Harmonists will be Sean Bell, Danny Kornfeld, Zal Owen, Eric Peters, Blake Roman and Steven Telsey. Jessie Davidson plays Ruth, with Ana Hoffman set to portray Josephine Baker – a major celebrity whom the Harmonists encountered on their way to the top. The ensemble includes Elise Frances Daniells, Zak Edwards, Abby Goldfarb, Eddie Grey, Shayne Kennon, Benjamin Harold Moore, Matthew Mucha, Tori Palin, Barrett Riggins, Kayleen Seidl, Andrew O’Shanick, Nancy Ticotin and Kate Wesler. As announced, Chip Zien and Sierra Boggess star in the musical that will be directed by Tony winner Warren Carlyle. Joining the creative team are Beowulf Boritt as scenic designer; Linda Cho and Ricky Lurie as costume designers; Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer as lighting designers; Dan Moses Schreier as sound designer; Sara Edwards as associate director/choreographer; Roy Gabay/Jumpstart Entertainment as general manager; Tom Watson as wig and hair designer and John O’Neill as music director and additional vocal and music arranger. Harmony will begin performances at the Museum of Jewish Heritage on March 23 and open on April 13.
Stephen Schwhartz to be Honored at American Songbook Association Gala
Good news! Stephen Schwartz will be honored at the American Songbook Association’s Annual Gala. The Tony-winning composer will receive the 2022 ASA Lifetime Achievement Award at the one-night-only event that will take place at the Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center on May 9 at 7:30 PM EST. A starry cast of actors who have been featured Schwartz’s musicals will perform throughout the evening, including Ben Vereen, Ann Harada, Paul Shaffer, Debbie Gravitte, Rupert Holmes, Kurt Peterson, John Bucchino and Teri Ralston with additional names to be announced. The gala will be directed by Scott Coulter and feature Michael Roberts as music director. Click here for tickets and more information.