Calculating the technical rehearsal needs of the new Frank Wildhorn-Christopher Hampton-Don Black show, which includes special effects and multiple locations — to say nothing of flying vampires — has been complicated. The first performance has been changed several times owing to tech needs.
The original start date of July 19 was put off a week to allow for additional time in technical rehearsals. A burst water pipe in the stage-left wing of the Belasco Theatre July 26 then prompted producers to move the first preview date from that day to July 28, and then July 29. The July 29 performance was later canceled. Opening night remains Aug. 19.
Inspired by the Bram Stoker gothic novel, "Dracula," the musical is by composer Frank Wildhorn (Jekyll & Hyde) and lyricist-librettists Christopher Hampton (Sunset Blvd., Les Liaisons Dangereuses) and Don Black (Sunset Blvd., Aspects of Love). Tony Award winner Des McAnuff (The Who's Tommy, Big River) directs the show, which features Tom Hewitt (The Rocky Horror Show) as Dracula and Melissa Errico (Amour) as Mina.
The musical had a world premiere developmental run at the La Jolla Playhouse in California in 2001.
Fans of the Stoker classic about vampires should expect flying blood-suckers, courtesy of the respected special effects company Flying by Foy, of Peter Pan fame. "Aerial staging" is by Rob Besserer. The production will also feature Don Stephenson as Renfield, Darren Ritchie as Jonathan Harker, Kelli O'Hara as Lucy Westenra, Chris Hoch as Arthur Holmwood, Bart Shatto as Quincey Morris, Shonn Wiley as Jack Seward and Stephen McKinley Henderson as Abraham Van Helsing, with Celina Carvajal, Melissa Fagan, Jenifer Foote, Anthony Holds, Pamela Jordan, Elizabeth Loyacano, Tracy Miller, Graham Rowat, Megan Sikora and Chuck Wagner.
The sensual thriller about vampires, their prey and their predators is based on the 1897 novel by Irish author Bram Stoker. The novel is told in journal entries and letters and has remained an international best seller over the last century.
Choreography is by Mindy Cooper, with musical direction by conductor Constantine Kitsopoulos. Orchestrations are by Doug Besterman. Designers are Heidi Ettinger (scenic), Catherine Zuber (costume), Howell Binkley (lighting) and Acme Sound Partners (sound).
Designer Ettinger is remembered for her Tony-winning work designing the physical worlds for the Broadway musicals The Secret Garden and Big River.
Dracula, The Musical is produced on Broadway by Dodger Stage Holding and Joop van den Ende, in association with Clear Channel Entertainment.
Tickets are on sale now through www.telecharge.com or (212) 239-6200 and (800) 223-7565 or at the Belasco Theatre (111 West 44th Street).