Before it was a Broadway hit and film sensation, Grease was a gritty 1971 Chicago play with music that reflected the lives of Windy City teens in the 1950s.
As previously reported, that early version of the modern American classic by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey will be staged by ATC for the first time since the early 1970s April 21-June 5.
The production, directed by ATC artistic director PJ Paparelli and choreographed by Jim Corti, is billed as "the restored, revised, R-rated" original Grease.
The Original Grease will feature Adrian Aguilar as Danny Zuko and Kelly Davis Wilson as Sandy Dumbroski in a cast of 26.
The company also includes Tony Clarno (Kenickie), Jessica Diaz (Rizzo), Bubba Weiler (Doody), Robert Colletti (Roger), Patrick De Nicola (Sonny), Tyler Ravelson (Miller), Jessie Fisher (Frenchy), Carol Rose (Marty), Sadieh Rifai (Jan), Hannah Gomez (Cha-Cha Degregorio), Adam Shalzi (Eugene Florczyk), Michael Accardo (Vince Fontaine, Officer Maiale, Coach Grabowski), Bryan Connor (Johnny Casino, Teen Angel), Peggy Roeder (Miss Mildred Lynch) and Tom Lally (The Old Bum, Jan's father). The role of Patty Simcox is yet to be cast. The Rydell High 50th Reunion Alumni — this script apparently includes the senior-citizen versions of favorite characters — are Susan Fay (Patricia Simcox Honeywell), Alan Barinholtz (Eugene Florczyk), Tom Lally (Kenickie), Mark Shallow (Doody), Anthony Dale Kolton (Roger), Judi Schindler (Frenchy) and Danon Dastugue (Jan).
"Jim Jacobs, Jim Corti and I can truly say this has been one of most extensive audition processes that Grease has ever had," Paparelli said in a statement. "We saw over 850 people, ages 15 to 70, from all across the Midwest over the last year. We want to thank the actors and local agents who were all a pleasure to work with, and we are thrilled to announce our extraordinary group of actors to bring the show back home to Chicago."
Here's how ATC bills the restored show: "Chicago. 1959. Before two movies and three Broadway productions, summer lovin' happened on Lake Michigan and the Pink Ladies were a group of working class outsiders living on Chicago's Northwest Side. Including never-before-heard music, lyrics and scenes, author Jim Jacobs teams up with artistic director PJ Paparelli and choreographer Jim Corti to bring to life for the first time since 1971 the original R-Rated version of the world's most famous movie musical."
Performances will play ATC's home at 1909 W. Byron, Chicago, IL. Opening night is May 2.
Grease has book, music and lyrics by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey. Musical direction is by Roberta Duchak. Orchestration is by Malcolm Ruhl.
For more information, visit www.atcweb.org.