The acting artistic director will stage the work to close out her Providence, Rhode Island company's season in the Chace Theater. Previews begin April 15 and the opening is set for April 21 for the run through May 22.
Set in a posh resort in 1948's Miami, You Never Know features a musical-within-a-musical that centers on a young man's discovery of his father's unfinished work about a philandering politician, his screen actress wife and the young songwriting hero.
The cast includes Haviland Stillwell (Fiddler on the Roof ), Gerritt VanderMeer (The Music Man national tour), Julio Monge (Fosse, The Long Christmas Ride Home- Trinity Rep), Darryl Semira (Bombay Dreams, Mamma Mia!) and Jay Montgomery (Falsettos) with Trinity Rep resident company members Fred Sullivan, Jr. (Annie), Rachael Warren (My Fair Lady), Mauro Hantman (The Ruby Sunrise), Stephen Thorne (The Henriad) and student Ben Steinfeld (West Side Story).
The creative team includes musical director Charles Alterman, orchestrator Dan Delange and designers David Jenkins (set), William Lane (costumes), John Ambrosone (lighting) and Peter Hurowitz (sound).
Strouse previously told Playbill.com (March, 2004) that he was impressed by Trinity Rep's conceptual take on Annie even though the Dehnert staging was rebuked by his collaborators. (The production added a bleaker vision whereby the title character awoke to find her adventures were a dream.) "I thought she was terribly inventive and it kind of matched what I was doing" in You Never Know, he said. He approached Dehnert with the new musical. Dehnert gladly accepted and has since been working closely with Strouse for more than a year on the project. "Working on a new musical is a lot more hands-on than working on a new play. Many parents are nurturing this new 'baby' to life — the writers, the directors, the choreographer and the designers," stated Dehnert in a release. "Charles’ love for this story and connection to it is huge, and that’s inspiring to us all."
The former associate artistic director took on the lead duties when the company's decade-long leader Oskar Eustis accepted the post as artistic director of New York's Public Theater. Since joining Trinity Rep in 1997, she has staged West Side Story, A Moon for the Misbegotten, The Skin of Our Teeth, Peter Pan or the Boy Who Would Not Grow Up, Noises Off, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, My Fair Lady, Othello, Saint Joan and this season's Henry IV as part of the company's epic Shakespeare three-play cycle The Henriad, Shakespeare's Kings. Other works include composing the original music and lyrics for Trinity Rep’s recent Boston production of A Christmas Carol and music for The Cider House Rules.
d'Amboise has worked as a choreographer, director and dancer. On Broadway, he co-starred with Bernadette Peters in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Song and Dance, earning him a Tony nomination. His choreography was featured in the original production of High Society and Terrence Mann's Romeo and Juliet. The creator of more than 50 ballets for companies including the San Francisco Ballet, the New York City Ballet, the Het National Ballet in Amsterdam and The Royal Ballet of Flanders is also at work on a new play with dance titled The Studio.
Composer-lyricist is the pen behind such musicals as Annie, Bye Bye Birdie and Applause — each of which earned him a Tony Award. Other works include It's a Bird...It's a Plane...It's Superman!, Marty, Golden Boy, A Broadway Musical, I and Albert, Charlie and Algernon, Rags, Dance a Little Closer, Nick and Nora and All American.
Tickets to You Never Know at Trinity Rep, 201 Washington Street in Providence, RI are on sale through (401) 351-4242. For more information, visit Trinity Rep online at www.trinityrep.com.