Life Is Weill: Here Lies Jenny Starring Bebe Neuwirth Makes San Fran Debut May 1

News   Life Is Weill: Here Lies Jenny Starring Bebe Neuwirth Makes San Fran Debut May 1 Here Lies Jenny, the unique Kurt Weill-infused musical entertainment that jazzed late-night audiences Off-Broadway in summer 2004, begins a San Francisco engagement May 1, with Bebe Neuwirth recreating her work.
Bebe Neuwirth in Here Lies Jenny
Bebe Neuwirth in Here Lies Jenny Photo by Carol Rosegg

Directed and conceived by Roger Rees and choreographed by Neuwirth's Chicago colleague Ann Reinking, the show introduces a bedraggled woman who returns to a run-down watering hole populated by two thugs, a pianist and a barkeep.

In a 90-minute span of time, songs by Kurt Weill are performed — not telling a particular story but suggesting conflicts within the lost title character, and between her and the men of the joint.

The San Francisco run plays to May 25 (a limited engagement) at the Post Street Theatre. Opening is May 3.

Music direction and supervision are by Leslie Stifelman, who helped create the work in New York City.

The production has scenic design by Neil Patel, costume design by Kaye Voyce, lighting design by Frances Aronson and sound design by Tony Meola. The West Coast premiere is presented by The Zipper Theatre, Brent Peek and Maria Di Dia.

Post Street Theatre is at 450 Post Street. For information, call (415) 771-6900 or visit www.ticketmaster.com.

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"In Here Lies Jenny, Jenny, following her guiding star, roams the dark city streets and, drawn in by its haunting music, she tumbles down into a dock-side gin joint. As she gives herself to the spinning songs — and to the darkly handsome men that have now fallen under her spell — Jenny confronts the romantic pulse of her poignant, funny and turbulent existence. As she and her lovesick companions beat out the soundtrack of her life on the worn wooden floors, Jenny discovers a strength that even she didn't know she had — the courage to face the dawning of another day."

The show features the music of Kurt Weill with the lyrics of Bertolt Brecht, Roger Fernay, Ira Gershwin, Langston Hughes, Alan Jay Lerner, Maurice Magre, Ogden Nash, Franz Werfel and Kurt Weill.

Neuwirth won two Emmy Awards for her work on "Cheers" and two Tony Awards (for 1987's Sweet Charity, in which she played Nickie) and the smash revival of Chicago, as Velma).

Here Lies Jenny originally played Off-Broadway's Zipper Theatre on West 37th Street May 7-Oct. 3, 2004. Its original 35-performance run was extended twice due to popular demand.