Written and composed by Alastair McGuckian and produced by Garrett McGuckian, Ha'Penny Bridge "is a love story set in Dublin during the Irish civil war in the early 1920s. A story of great emotion set against a backdrop of political unrest, Ha'Penny Bridge mixes fun and drama in a great evening's entertainment."
Narina Entertainment announced the creative team on Nov. 26. No casting has been announced. The Toronto run was previously billed as a world premiere, but it's now being called the North American premiere. The show, however, has been "completely reworked" since an earlier staging in Ireland. The title refers to a Dublin footbridge built in 1816.
Known for her work on such Stratford Festival productions as Oklahoma! and Oliver!, Feore won a Dora Mavor Moore Award for the Canadian Opera Company's production of Oedipus Rex.
Ha'Penny Bridge's creative team includes Tony Award- nominated orchestrator Larry Blank (The Drowsy Chaperone and White Christmas) and Peter Myers (Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me), vocal arranger Gordon Harrell (Fosse), musical director Grant Sturiale (Radio City Christmas Spectacular), Broadway scenic designer Allen Moyer (The Little Dog Laughed and Grey Gardens), costume designer Michael Gianfrancesco (a Stratford veteran), Canadian lighting designer Jock Munro and Canadian sound designer Peter McBoyle.
"We are really excited to be launching this show in Toronto, and feel extremely fortunate to have attracted the cream of theatrical talent from North America to our team," stated executive producer Garrett McGuckian. "This production is going to be something really special, and I am delighted that Toronto gets to see it first." Ha'Penny Bridge will be the final show of the 2008 Mirvish season. Visit www.mirvish.com for more information about Mirvish shows and theatres in Toronto.
For group ticket sales information about Ha'Penny Bridge, call (416) 593-4142 or (800) 724-6420.
The earlier season announcement by the Mirvishes billed the show this way: "In the vein of such stage hits as Fiddler on the Roof and Les Misérables, Ha'Penny Bridge – The Musical portrays a rich, moving, but troubled love story, set in Ireland against a backdrop of political unrest and divided loyalties. It is Dublin, 1922. As the English troops prepare to move out and civil war threatens to tear the city apart, the Irish capital's residents suffer the dual pressures of political violence and poverty. It is amidst this chaos that George Aitkin, a young Londoner, meets Molly Cassidy. In an historical period of heightened nationalistic tension — greed, deceit, jealousy and love are mixed with dramatic consequences. What chance has their love of surviving in a country divided by civil war?"