Clarke will assume the role on Dec. 16 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater. Kelli O''Hara, who originated the role of Clara—a mature but mentally naive young woman who impetuously falls in love with a native Florentine boy while vacationing with her mother—will play her final performance on Dec. 4. Jennifer Hughes, who understudies the role, will perform the role from Dec. 6 to Dec. 15. O'Hara will play Babe Williams opposite Harry Connick, Jr., in the Kathleen Marshall-directed production, due to begin previews Jan. 19 at the American Airlines Theatre.
Tickets are now on sale to March 26. The show, a limited engagement at Lincoln Center Theater, was first extended to Jan. 1, 2006, after winning Tony Awards, including Best Score (Adam Guettel) and Best Actress in a Musical (Victoria Clark).
Craig Lucas penned the libretto, based on a 1960 novella by Elizabeth Spencer. Barlett Sher directed.