Marty, the musical version of the Paddy Chayefsky-penned 1955 film starring Ernest Borgnine, finally makes it to the stage at Boston's Huntington Theatre Company, Oct. 18.
The Charles Strouse-Lee Adams-Rupert Holmes musical is set for performances at the Beantown not-for-profit through Nov. 24.
John C. Reilly, a Tony Award nominee for his double duty in True West and star in the upcoming film version of "Chicago," stars in the title role as a loveless, ordinary Bronx butcher approaching middle-age. Though pestered by his Italian mother to get married, he insists love isn't in his cards, until the night he meets Clara.
Reilly heads a cast that includes Michael Allosso, Barbara Andres, Frank Aronson, Jim Augustine, Jim Bracchitta, Bethany J. Cassidy, Tim Douglas, Jennifer Frankel, Kent French, Alexander Gemignani, Shannon Hammons, Cheryl McMahon, Robert Montano, Evan Pappas, Marilyn Pasekoff, Matt Ramsey, Joey Sorge, Anne Torsiglieri and Mark Walker.
Mark Brokaw (Lobby Hero) directs the world premiere musical based on the Chayefsky screenplay, featuring book by Tony Award winner Rupert Holmes (The Mystery of Edwin Drood) with music and lyrics by the Tony Award-winning songwriting team of composer Charles Strouse and lyricist Lee Adams (Bye Bye Birdie, Applause). Choreography is by Tony Award winner Rob Ashford (Thoroughly Modern Millie). Orchestrations are by Don Sebeski and Larry Hochman. Eric Stern serves as musical director. The designers include Robert Jones (sets), Mark McCullough (lights), Jess Goldstein (costumes) and Kurt Fischer (sound). Considering the award-winning talent involved, the show is expected to have a commercial life after Boston, depending on critical and audience response.
The songlist includes "Marty," "Whaddya Feel Like Doin’?," "Saturday Night Girl," "Play the Game," "That Blue Suit," "Why Not You and Me?," "She Sees Who I Am," "Recessional," "Saturday Night Girl Reprise," "My Star," "Niente Da Fare," "What Else Could I Do?," "Almost," "Life is Sweet" and "Wish I Knew A Love Song."
Brokaw had directed previous readings of the production which has been in development for several years. Producer Jim Weissenbach (since joined by Waxman Williams Entertainment) originally acquired the rights from the Chayefsky family on the strength of the previously-attached star, Jason Alexander. Director Robert Longbottom (Flower Drum Song) and writer Aaron Sorkin (A Few Good Men, "The West Wing") were also previously with the project.
Bookwriter Holmes replaced Sorkin in 2000. He previously told Playbill On-Line "It's enough [of a task] to adapt Paddy Chayefsky," so he started from scratch rather than adapting or rewriting Sorkin's script. Lyricist Adams, who had already invested a year and a half to the project, confirmed this to Playbill On-Line, "We had two-thirds of a show written and that went out the window." Read other comments by librettist Holmes and lyricist Adams in their respective interviews in Playbill On Line's Brief Encounter section.
For tickets or more information on Marty at the Huntington Theatre Company, 264 Huntington Avenue in Boston, MA, call the Box Office at (617) 266-0800. Also visit the website at www.huntingtontheater.org.
— by Ernio Hernandez