Casting Announced for New York Debut of Stephen Schwartz Opera Séance on a Wet Afternoon

News   Casting Announced for New York Debut of Stephen Schwartz Opera Séance on a Wet Afternoon Soprano Lauren Flanigan, who created the role of medium Myra Foster in the world premiere of Séance on a Wet Afternoon, will reprise her performance in the New York City Opera production of the Stephen Schwartz opera.

Séance on a Wet Afternoon, which premiered at Opera Santa Barbara in September 2009, will make its New York debut April 19, 2011, at 7:30 PM. The composer's son, director Scott Schwartz (Golda's Balcony, Jane Eyre, Rooms), will again direct the production that will run through May 1, 2011.

Flanigan has been with Séance since its early workshops. She will lead a cast that also includes original cast member Kim Josephson as Bill Foster. The NYCO production will also include Todd Wilander as Charles Clayton, Melody Moore as Rita Clayton, Jane Shaulis as Miss Wintry, Pamela Jones as Miss Rose, Bill Lagundino ias Mr. Bennett, Boyd Schlaefer as Mr. Cole, Juan José Ibarra as the Policeman, Phillip Boykin as Inspector Watts and Michael Marcotte as the Irish Tenor.

The New York run will reunite the original creative team including Tony winner Heidi Ettinger (scenic design), Tony nominee David Lander (lighting design) and Alejo Vietti (costume designer).

George Manahan will conduct Séance on a Wet Afternoon, which will have musical staging by Matt Williams.

Séance on a Wet Afternoon is described as "a psychological thriller about a medium, Myra Foster, her doting husband Bill, and the spirit of their deceased eleven-year-old son, Arthur, who speaks to Myra and is her contact for her séances. Because Myra has never received the recognition she feels her gifts merit, they hatch a Plan: They will kidnap the daughter of a local wealthy industrialist, and keep her safe while the media frenzy over her abduction builds. When Myra has a 'vision' that leads to the successful recovery of the girl and the ransom, her fame will be assured. As The Plan is put into action, the girl's presence in the house leads to complex psychological responses from Myra, Bill and Arthur. The delicate balance of Myra and Bill's relationship and Myra's sanity itself begins to fray, as long-buried secrets are revealed. The Plan goes badly awry, and in Myra's final séance, the drama comes to a devastating conclusion." Stephen Schwartz, a five-time Tony nominee for the scores of Pippin, Godspell, Working, Wicked and his lyrics for Rags, has earned Academy Awards for "Pocahontas" and "The Prince of Egypt." He also earned three Academy Award nominations for his work on "Enchanted." Schwartz also received Grammy Awards for the recordings of Wicked, Godspell and "Pocahontas."

NYCO season subscriptions are currently on sale. Single tickets will begin sale Sept. 7. Visit NYCOpera, or phone (212) 496-0600.

New York City Opera stage productions take place at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center.

Lauren Flanigan (center) conjures the dead in <i>Séance on a Wet Afternoon</i>
Lauren Flanigan (center) conjures the dead in Séance on a Wet Afternoon Photo by David Bazemore
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