Goodspeed Musicals producer Michael Price is putting the final touches on plans for the 2002 season to be presented at the Connecticut nonprofit's two venues, homes to a mix of world premiere musicals and revivals of classic musicals.
Goodspeed's director of public relations, Jennifer Wislocki, said The Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam, CT, is expected to stage revivals of Dames at Sea, the 1968 spoof of 1930s movie musicals, with book and lyrics by George Haimsohn and Robin Miller, music by Jim Wise, April 12-July 13; Rodgers and Hart's Babes in Arms, the brash musical comedy about children of vaudevillians putting on their own show to prove they are worthy, with "a completely new book by Joe DiPietro," directed by Greg Ganakas and choreographed by Randy Skinner, July 19-Oct. 5; and King of Hearts, the 1978 Broadway musical based on the French film, by composer Peter Link, lyricist Jacob Brackman and librettist Steve Tesich, Oct. 11-Dec. 15. The book of King of Hearts represents the work of the creative team before it was altered and changed for Broadway, where it flopped. The whimsical musical comedy follows WWI American soldier Johnny Able as he tries to save a small French village (and the freed inmates of the local asylum who inhabit it) from the last German bomb of the war.
Joe DiPietro (I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change) had an audience hit (but a critical flop) writing the libretto to the Gershwin musical, They All Laughed, seen over the summer at the Goodspeed Opera House.
At the Norma Terris, which has a focus on new works or revised old works, expect Actor, Lawyer, Indian Chief, composer-lyricist Craig Carnelia and librettist-director David H. Bell's tale of a former TV cowboy hero, his daughter, a jaded 40ish lawyer and a movie studio, May 16-June 9; a newly revised version of The Baker's Wife, about a baker in a French village who loses his wife to a younger man, with book by Joseph Stein and music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, directed by Gordon Greenberg, Aug. 15 Sept. 8; and The Road to Hollywood, a new musical valentine to the Bing Crosby-Bob Hope-Dorothy Lamour road pictures styled after the 1940s movie musicals, with book by Michael Pace and Walter Bobbie (who directs) and music and lyrics by Rob Preston and Michael Pace, Nov. 14-Dec. 8.
— By Kenneth Jones