THE NEW NATIONAL TOURING PRODUCTION OF THE SOUND OF MUSIC
PREMIERES IN NEW ORLEANS SEPT. 20 - 25, 2016 AT THE SAENGER THEATRE
Tickets go on sale Friday, July 22 at 10 a.m.
Music by RICHARD RODGERS
Lyrics by OSCAR HAMMERSTEIN II
Book by HOWARD LINDSAY and RUSSEL CROUSE
Suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp
Directed by JACK O'BRIEN
NEW ORLEANS - (July 14, 2015) - Tickets go on sale for the brand new production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC, directed by three-time Tony Award® winner Jack O'Brien on Friday, July 22, 2016 at 10 a.m. This lavish new production will make its New Orleans premiere Sept. 20 - 25, 2016 at the Saenger Theatre as part of a North American Tour. Presented by the New Orleans Theatre Association, THE SOUND OF MUSIC is part of the East Jefferson General Hospital Broadway in New Orleans 2016 - 2017 season.
Tickets for THE SOUND OF MUSIC start at $30 and will be available at the Saenger Theatre Box Office, 1111 Canal St., New Orleans, Louisiana 70112, BroadwayInNewOrleans.com, all Ticketmaster outlets and by phone at (800) 982-2787. Group sales are offered for groups of 10 or more and will be available by calling (504) 287-0372.
BEN DAVIS (Broadway's Violet, A Little Night Music, La Bohème) will play Captain Georg von Trapp and MELODY BETTS will play The Mother Abbess with MERWIN FOARD as Max Detweiler, TERI HANSEN as Elsa Schraeder, AUSTIN COLBY as Rolf and PAIGE SILVESTER as Liesl.
And introducing Jack O'Brien's brand new discovery, KERSTIN ANDERSON as Maria Rainer. A current student at Pace University, Anderson won the coveted role from hundreds who auditioned. This is her first national tour.
"In looking over a great American classic like THE SOUND OF MUSIC, sometimes you stumble on something you wonder if anyone ever saw before," O'Brien says. "For instance, I was privileged to actually see Mary Martin in the original production, as I was myself just a junior at the University of Michigan. She was a great star, and she was giving a ‘great star's' performance. She was at the apex of her career, and she was both brilliant and 46 years old.
But in reading it privately, something caught my eye. Maria is probably, as a postulant, no more than six or seven years older than Liesl! She may be many things - a country lass, a climber-of-trees, a young renegade, but she is clearly NOT an established star! How interesting!
I have always believed Maria was a ‘star-making' part rather than the leading role we remember from the movies and our experience. So, I went looking for someone with star-making magic. And in through the audition door one day walked Kerstin, still studying at Pace University in New York. She opened her mouth, she sang and the tears welled up in my eyes.
If ever there were an enchanting young woman standing on the brink of discovery - this was it! And now, the discovery is about to be all of ours! Please, as I do - welcome her!"
THE SOUND OF MUSIC features music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp. This new production is directed by Jack O'Brien (credits include: Hairspray, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Coast of Utopia), choreographed by Danny Mefford (Fun Home, The Bridges of Madison County and Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson) and music supervision by Andy Einhorn (Bullets Over Broadway, Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella, Brief Encounter, The Light in the Piazza). The design and production team is comprised of Douglas W. Schmidt, set design (Tony Award® nominee: 42nd Street, Into the Woods); Jane Greenwood, costume design (2014 recipient of the Special Tony Award® for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre), Natasha Katz, lighting design (Five-time Tony Award® winner: An American in Paris, Once, Aida, The Coast of Utopia, The Glass Menagerie) and Ken Travis, sound design (Aladdin, Newsies, Memphis). Casting by Telsey + Company/Rachel Hoffman, CSA.
According to O'Brien, "THE SOUND OF MUSIC has been in our ears for decades, as it deserves to be. But it might be time to look once more, and more closely, at this remarkable work I feel begins to reveal itself as deeper, richer and more powerful than ever. It is no longer ‘your mother's' familiar SOUND OF MUSIC. We are tearing off the varnish of the past from one of the great glories of our theatergoing experience and making it fresh! This is an opportunity we have all longed to create!"
Producer Beth Williams (Grove Entertainment) said, "It is a great privilege to bring this beloved Rodgers & Hammerstein musical to theaters across North America. We hope that people of all ages will continue to fall in love with it for the first time, or all over again, and that it will truly become one of their ‘favorite things.' From our distinguished team led by the creative master Jack O'Brien, audiences can expect a truly magnificent production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC."
In the words of Ted Chapin, president of Rodgers & Hammerstein, "THE SOUND OF MUSIC continues to be the world's most beloved musical. When a major national tour was suggested, I not only agreed, but was willing to roll up my sleeves and do whatever I could to fashion a new stage production that would re-engage today's theatergoing public. The show was originally created for Broadway, and seeing it on stage only reinforces the power of the story and the score. And with Jack O'Brien at the directorial helm - well, we simply could not do better. Landing somewhere between The Coast of Utopia and Hairspray (shows for which Jack won Tony® Awards), his production is smart, focused, and surprising."
THE SOUND OF MUSIC enjoyed extraordinary success as the first live television production of a musical in over 50 years when "The Sound of Music Live!" aired on NBC in Dec. 2013. 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of the film version, which continues to be the most successful movie musical in history. The spirited, romantic and beloved musical story of Maria and the Von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with songs such as "My Favorite Things," "Do-Re-Mi," "Climb Ev'ry Mountain," "Edelweiss" and the title song.
About Broadway Across America
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Originally built in 1927, the Saenger Theatre was designed to reflect a magnificent 15th century Italian courtyard and gardens, with a starlit evening sky ceiling, arched surroundings, statuary, columns and decorative moldings. In January 2012, the City of New Orleans, Canal Street Development Corporation (CSDC) and ACE Theatrical Group formed a public-private partnership to carry out a $52 million restoration project after the iconic theatre was severely damaged during Hurricane Katrina. The Saenger Theatre reopened in the fall of 2013, authentically restored to the finest level of detail, with state-of-the-art technological improvements and updated first-class amenities. The theatre hosts a wide variety of performing arts attractions including live theater, comedy shows and musical acts. The Saenger Theatre is located at the corner of Canal and North Rampart streets in downtown New Orleans and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Visit http://www.saengernola.com for more information.
New Orleans Theatre Association (NOTA) is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation whose mission is to attract and present the finest theatrical and performing arts attractions available in New Orleans. NOTA is also dedicated to financial and technical support of local non-profit institutions in New Orleans that are dedicated to the furtherance of theatrical and musical education and production.