Broadway's Tale of Two Cities Will Star Barbour, Lazar, Toro, Edelman, Burkhardt

News   Broadway's Tale of Two Cities Will Star Barbour, Lazar, Toro, Edelman, Burkhardt James Barbour, the baritone who starred in Broadway's Assassins, Beauty and the Beast, Carousel and Jane Eyre, will be selfless, conflicted hero Sydney Carton in Broadway's new musical, A Tale of Two Cities.

James Barbour
James Barbour

Facing the guillotine in the French Revolution-set musical drama, Barbour will repeat the role he created in the fall 2007 world premiere of Jill Santoriello's musical version of the novel by Dickens. He'll be Carton, the cynic who finds himself in a love triangle with Lucie Manette (played by Brandi Burkhardt) and French aristocrat Charles Darnay (played by Aaron Lazar, late of Les Miz and The Light in the Piazza).

The cast (announced June 30) will also include Craig Bennett as Jerry Cruncher, Kevin Earley (Thoroughly Modern Millie) as Ernest Defarge, four-time Tony Award nominee Gregg Edelman (City of Angels, 1776, Anna Karenina, Wonderful Town) as Dr. Alexandre Manette, Michael Hayward-Jones as Jarvis Lorry, Mackenzie Mauzy as The Seamstress, Katherine McGrath as Miss Pross, Les Minski as Marquis St. Evremonde, Natalie Toro (Les Miz) as Madame Therese Defarge, Nick Wyman (Les Miz) as John Barsad, plus Drew Aber, Catherine Brunell (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Alison Cimmet, Jennifer Evans, William Thomas Evans, Randy Glass, Kevin Greene, Michael Halling (In My Life, The Pajama Game), Tim Hartman, Fred Inkley, Georgi James, Miles Kath, Jay Lusteck, Ray McLeod (Wonderful Town), Catherine Missal, James Moye (Meet John Doe), Walter O'Neil, Dan Petrotta, Devin Richards, Rob Richardson, Rebecca Robbins, Jennifer Smith, Anne Tolpegin, Eric Van Tielen, Mollie Vogt-Welch and Alison Walla.

The show was sold out at Asolo Repertory Theater in Sarasota, FL, last year. Warren Carlyle, that staging's choreographer, now directs and choreographs Tale, which will begin previews Aug. 19 at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. Opening is Sept. 18.

The sweeping musical about a family separated by the French Revolution, seeks to bring back the Les Misérables-style epic. Book, music and lyrics are by Santoriello, a Broadway newcomer coming on the scene in a year when Broadway first-timers are a hot thing: She joins the current ranks of newbies including Tony Award-winning writers Stew (book, music, lyrics, Passing Strange) and Lin-Manuel Miranda (music and lyrics, In the Heights), plus Quiara Alegria Hudes (librettist, In the Heights), librettist Hunter Bell and composer-lyricist Jeff Bowen ([title of show]) and John Bucchino (composer-lyricist A Catered Affair).

According to the producers, "Set against the epic backdrop of the French Revolution…A Tale of Two Cities is a musical about injustice, vengeance and the redemptive power of love. When Dr. Manette is released from the French Bastille after 17 years, he must be resurrected from the brink of madness by his daughter, Lucie. In England they meet two very different men: the exiled French aristocrat, Charles Darnay, whom Lucie marries, and the drunken cynic, Sydney Carton. Soon family secrets and political intrigue combine to draw Lucie and her family back to Paris. At the height of the Reign of Terror, the musical finds an unlikely hero in Carton." Director-choreographer Carlyle is an Encores! veteran, and choreographer of the world premiere musical Dancing in the Dark.

The musical is being designed by Tony Walton (scenery), David Zinn (costumes), Richard Pilbrow (lights), Carl Casella and Domonic Sack (sound), Tim Watson (hair). Orchestrations are by Edward B. Kessel; arrangements are by Edward B. Kessel, Wendy Bobbitt Cavett, Kevin Stites & Bob Krogstad. Production stage manager is Kim Vernace. Parker Esse is associate choreographer. James Neglia is music coordinator. Christopher C. Smith is tehcnical supervisor.

Music direction and supervision are by Kevin Stites.

A Tale of Two Cities is being produced by Barbra Russell, Ron Sharpe Bernard Brogan, Sharon A. Fordham, Theatre Associates-David Sonnenberg/Rami Evar, The Monagle Group, Joseph J. Grano, Fanok Entertainment, Mary E. Laminack, Nancy and Paul Audet, Jim Barry, Gasperino Entertainment, Vincent Russell, William M. Broderick, Alex Santoriello in association with David Bryant, Harry Casey.

Tickets for the Broadway run are available at TeleCharge.com and (212) 239-6200 or (800) 432-7250.

For more information visit www.TaleMusical.com.

James Barbour, Julie LaChance and Derek Keeling in the 2007 run of <i>A Tale of Two Cities</i> in Florida.
James Barbour, Julie LaChance and Derek Keeling in the 2007 run of A Tale of Two Cities in Florida. Photo by Carol Rosegg
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