As previously announced, LuPone, who is currently starring in the acclaimed Broadway revival of Sweeney Todd, will head the cast of a concert version of Gypsy at the Ravinia. LuPone will join the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for three performances of the classic Stephen Sondheim-Jule Styne-Arthur Laurents musical Aug. 11-13. The Tony and Olivier Award-winning actress will star as the indomitable Mama Rose, the role created on Broadway by Ethel Merman and subsequently played by Angela Lansbury, Tyne Daly and, most recently, Bernadette Peters. Lonny Price will direct the Chicago production, and Paul Gemignani will conduct the famed orchestra. No other casting has been announced.
The Ravinia Festival's July 15 benefit is titled Gershwin Gala: Rhapsody in Blue and More and will feature performances from Tony winners and former Ragtime co-stars Audra McDonald and Brian Stokes Mitchell. Hershey Felder will oversee the benefit, and he will also offer one performance of his Monsieur Chopin show in the Ravinia's Martin Theatre.
The Life Tony winner Lillias White will star in the Ravinia's musical theatre workshop production, The Princess and the Black-Eyed Pea. Karole Foreman and Andrew Chukerman's musical is a soulful retelling of the classic Hans Christian Andersen tale. Black-Eyed Pea will be presented Sept. 15 and 16.
The Ravinia's cabaret series, Martinis at the Martin, will feature performances by jazz favorite Jane Monheit (June 5), a double-bill with Michael Feinstein and Linda Eder (July 18 in the Pavilion), Tony and Emmy winner Elaine Stritch (Aug. 1), the Tierney Sutton Band (Aug. 21) and four-time Tony winner Audra McDonald (Sept. 10).
For more information about the Ravinia Festival, visit www.ravinia.org.