BREAKING NEWS: 2021 is going to be an unforgettable year celebrating the comeback of the New York Theater community. One of the most exciting lineup of shows will be the legendary ENCORES series at New York City Center. Some of the most popular musicals that have not been revived on the Great Bright Way since it's original production will be back on the New York stage as you've never seen it before. It will consist of….
Cy Coleman, Ira Gasman, and David Newman's THE LIFE. This new production of the Tony and Drama Desk Award winning musical will be BOTH adapted and directed by Tony and Emmy winner Billy Porter. In case anyone may not be familiar, THE LIFE tells the story of life in Times Square's 42nd Street in the 1980's during the crazy era long before the "Disneyfication" which was inhabited by pimps, prostitutes, druggies and dealers, runaways and the homeless. It originally debuted in 1990 OFF Broadway at the Westbeth Theatre. It later moved ON Broadway in 1997 playing the Ethel Barrymore Theatre where it ran for 21 previews and 466 regular performances. Notable songs include CHECK IT OUT, MY BODY, YOU CAN'T GO TO HEAVEN, I'M LEAVING YOU, WE HAD A DREAM, and WE GOTTA GO,
Henry Krieger, Robert Lorick, and Charles Blackwell's Tony winning musical THE TAP DANCE KID. This production will be directed by Tony winner Kenny Leon. It tells the story of an upper middle class African-American family and a 10 year old boy's dream of becoming a professional dancer but faces opposition from his father, a lawyer. It originally debuted at Broadway's Broadhurst Theatre in 1983 running for 669 performances, Notable songs include ANOTHER DAY, CLASS ACT, MAN IN THE MOON, LIKE HIM, SOMEDAY, and DANCE IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY.
In addition, 2 of ENCORES productions that were scheduled to happen this year 2020 have BOTH been pushed for the new season. This lineup will consist of….
Kurt Weill and Alan Jay Lerner's romantic Tony winning musical LOVE LIFE. Under the direction of Tony winner Victoria Clark and initially set to star Tony winner Brian Stokes Mitchell and Tony nominee Kate Baldwin, this production originally was set to run from March 18th-22nd, 2020. However, it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. No word has been said Mitchell and Baldwin or anyone of the cast will be continuing for its 2021 run. In case anyone may not know the story, LOVE LIFE tells the tale of a married couple who never age as they progress from 1791 to 1948, encountering difficulties in their marriage (and thus the very fabric of marriage) as they struggle to cope with changing social mores. The original production ran on Broadway in 1948 at the 46th Street Theatre (now the Richard Rodgers Theatre) for 252 performances. Notable songs include HERE I'LL STAY, I REMEMBER IT WELL, GREEN UP TIME, MY KIND OF NIGHT, I'M YOUR MAN, IS IT HIM OR IS IT ME, and THIS IS THE LIFE,
Jeanine Tesori, Dick Scanlan, and Richard Morris's romantic Tony winning smash hit musical comedy Thoroughly Modern Millie. Under the direction of Lear deBessonet and initially set to star Tony nominee Ashley Park in the title role. this production originally was set to run from March 6th-10th, 2020. However, it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Park is expecting to continue on with the show as its star. In case anyone may not know or remember, THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE is based on the acclaimed 1967 film of the same. Set in New York City in the year 1922, it tells the classic story of a young small-town girl who comes to New York City to marry for money instead of love – a thoroughly modern aim during the time when women were just entering the workforce. Along the way, the young girl soon begins to take delight in the flapper lifestyle, but problems arise when she checks into a hotel owned by the leader of a white slavery ring in China. The musical was well known for being the big STAR-IS-BORN making performance for Sutton Foster. The show originally got its start in La Jolla, California at La Jolla Playhouse in 2000. Days before the first performance, the initial actress who was supposed to play to play "Millie" got sick plucking newcomer Sutton Foster from the chorus into a leading lady that earned her rave reviews and brought the production to Broadway in 2002. The Broadway production opened at the Marquis Theatre running for 32 previews and 903 performances. Notable songs include NOT FOR THE LIFE OF ME, HOW THE OTHER HALF LIVES, WHAT DO I NEED WITH LOVE, JIMMY, FORGET ABOUT THE BOY, the showstopping GIMMIE GIMMIE, and of course it features the title song from the film (written by Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn).
For anyone who may not be familiar with the New York City Center ENCORES series, it was created in 1994. It's a series of staged concert presentations of popular but rarely ever produced Broadway Musicals. We are talking about classic shows that has NOT been seen on the New York stage within over 20+ years. They are usually rehearsed for about a week and a half in a private rehearsal studio before heading into City Center's main stage to tech and then run for only 5 SHOWS. All productions feature a full 35 piece orchestra (a.k.a THE ENCORES ORCHESTRA) on stage accompanying a full all-star Broadway cast and Ensemble (carrying scripts along with some stage blocking and choreography). Some of its notable productions have later went on to become full-scale Broadway revivals including the long running revival of Chicago, Wonderful Town, The Apple Tree, Gypsy, Violet, and Cotton Club Parade (which later became After Midnight).
For this new season, ENCORES will be welcoming a full brand new head creative team led by of Lear deBessonet as the new artistic director. Along the way, City Center will be releasing a set of Behind the Scenes documentaries that goes into the life of making this season's set of ENOCRES shows called ENCORES! INSIDE THE REVIVAL. You will have a front row seat with the creative team as they take the journey of putting these productions together on the road to being part of Live Theater's big COMEBACK in 2021.
No official dates have been made on when each of these shows will take center stage of New York's City Center.
Who is excited?
New York City Center President & CEO Arlene Shuler today announced the musical productions in development as part of the next chapter of the longstanding Tony-honored Encores! series, all of which will be explored in-depth as part of the 2020-2021 season in a new digital series Encores! Inside th…
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