Lauren Worsham, a Tony nominee for her performance in A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, will face off against Ashley Spencer (Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) in a concert performance of the score from Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera, based on the skating rivalry between Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan that turned violent in 1994.
The concert showcase will be presented 9:30 PM February 13, 2018, at Feinstein’s/54 Below. The announcement comes just days before the planned December 8 release of the film I, Tonya, a black comedy covering the same events.
Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera, has book and lyrics by Elizabeth Searle and music by Michael Teoli. The show recounts how Harding, facing a tough challenge from U.S teammate Kerrigan in the 1994 Olympics, hired a thug to smash Kerrigan’s knee with a rod. Kerrigan went on to win a silver medal in the competition, while Harding finished eighth. Once Harding’s role in the attack was discovered she was stripped of her previous championships and banned from professional skating for life.
Spencer will play “Tonya” and Lauren Worsham will play ”Nancy” in this showcase of Tonya & Nancy, which has previously been staged in Boston, Los Angeles, and Chicago, and enjoyed a sold-out run as part of the Off-Broadway New York Musical Theatre Festival in 2016. Still to be named: the actor who will play Harding’s hard-driving mother who abused her as a child.
Worsham won a Drama Desk Award and earned a Tony nomination for her performance as Phoebe D’Ysquith in A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder. She also performs frequently with her band, Sky-Pony. Spencer appeared on Broadway in Grease, Hairspray, and Priscilla, Queen of Desert.
The concert is being produced by Paul Boghosian/ Harborside Films, with a concert CD planned by Broadway Records. Casting is by Robin Carus.
The story has been the subject of books, parodies, songs, TV movies, a ballet, and even a previous opera, Tonya and Nancy: The Opera, produced in 2006 by Tufts University.
Feinstein’s/54 Below is located at 254 West 54th Street, beneath Studio 54, in Manhattan. Tickets, which cost $25–$60 (plus a $25 food/drink minimum), can be ordered here. Tickets on the day of performance after 4 PM are available only by calling (646) 476-3551.