The casting of the upcoming Kennedy Center production of Sunday in the Park with George, part of the much-in-the-news Sondheim Celebration, is now complete.
Joining the already announced Raúl Esparza (George), Melissa Errico (Dot), Florence Lacey (Yvonne), Donna Migliaccio (Nurse and Mrs.), Jason Gilbert (Franz), Tracy Lynn Olivera (Celeste 1), Sherri Edelen (Celeste 2), Michael L. Forrest (Boatman), Bob McDonald (Louis), Cris Groenendaal (Jules), Amy McWilliams (Frieda), Matthew Shepard (Soldier), Daniel Felton (Horn Player), Mary Jayne Raleigh (Woman with baby carriage) and Harry Winter (Mr.) are Linda Stephens as an Old Lady and Annie Simon as both a Boy bathing in the river and the daughter of Jules and Yvonne. The production begins previews on Friday, May 31.
The second act of the musical features the same cast in these roles: Raúl Esparza (as George, an artist), Melissa Errico (as Marie, George's grandmother), Jason Gilbert (as Dennis, a technician), Cris Groenendaal (as Bob Greenberg, the museum director), Florence Lacey (as Naomi Eisen, a composer), Donna Migliaccio (as Harriet Pawling, a patron of the arts), Bob McDonald (as Billy Webster, Harriet's friend), Mary Jayne Raleigh (as a photographer), Daniel Felton (as a museum assistant), Michael L. Forrest (as Charles Redmond, a visiting curator), Matthew Shepard (as Alex, an artist), Amy McWilliams (as Betty, an artist), Harry A. Winter (as Lee Randolph, the museum's publicist), Linda Stephens (as Blair Daniels, an art critic), Tracy Lynn Olivera (as a waitress) and Sherri Edelen (as Elaine).
The Stephen Sondheim-James Lapine work originally opened at Broadway's Booth Theatre on May 2, 1984, where it ran for 540 performances. Starring Mandy Patinkin as George and Bernadette Peters as Dot, the premiere Broadway company also included Barbara Bryne as the Old Lady, Brent Spiner as Franz, Charles Kimbrough as Jules and Dana Ivey as Yvonne. Sondheim's score — which was nominated for a Tony Award — features such titles as "Finishing the Hat," "Putting It Together," "Children and Art," "Move On" and "Beautiful." Sunday in the Park received ten Tony Award nominations, winning two—Scenic Designer (Tony Straiges) and Lighting Designer (Richard Nelson). It was also awarded a Pulitzer Prize.
Eric Schaeffer — who will also helm the Kennedy Center Passion — directs Sunday in the Park with George, one of the six Sondheim musicals being offered this spring and summer. The other five titles: Company, Merrily We Roll Along, Sweeney Todd, Passion and A Little Night Music. Tickets for Sunday in the Park range from $29-$79 and can be purchased by calling (800) 444-1324. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts is located in Washington, D.C., at 2700 F. Street. For more information, go to www.kennedy-center.org. —By Andrew Gans