LuPone and McDonald Passion Finds Its Giorgio

News   LuPone and McDonald Passion Finds Its Giorgio The upcoming concert version of Stephen Sondheim's Passion — starring Patti LuPone as Fosca and Audra McDonald as Clara — has found its male lead.

Michael Cerveris — who recently portrayed Ken in the Signature Theater's revival of Fifth of July — will star as Giorgio in the Tony-winning musical, which plays the festival Aug. 22 and 23. Cerveris played the role of the torn lover last year opposite Rebecca Luker and Judy Kuhn for the Kennedy Center's mounting of the musical during its summer-long Sondheim Celebration. Urban Cowboy's Lonny Price, who directed both LuPone and McDonald in the Lincoln Center Sweeney Todd concert, will direct here as well. Based on Ettore Scola's Italian film "Passion d'Amore," Passion opened on Broadway on May 9, 1994, with a cast that featured Jere Shea (Giorgio), Marin Mazzie (Clara) and Donna Murphy (Fosca). The tale of obsessive love includes such Sondheim tunes as "Happiness," "I Read," "I Wish I Could Forget You," "Loving You" and "No One Has Ever Loved Me." The original Broadway production received the 1994 Tony Award for Best Musical; Donna Murphy also garnered her first Tony for Best Actress in a Musical, and Sondheim and Lapine were awarded prizes for, respectively, Best Original Score and Best Book of a Musical.

Michael Cerveris received a Tony Award nomination for his performance in the title role of The Who's Tommy, a part he also played for two years in Germany. Cerveris originated the role of architect Thomas Andrews in the Tony-winning musical Titanic and also appeared onstage in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Total Eclipse, Abingdon Square and Life Is a Dream.

The Ravinia theatre is located in Highland Park, IL; for more information, go to www.ravinia.org.