Do producers really want to direct? Well, that would appear to be the case with Stewart F. Lane, the Broadway showman behind such productions as Thoroughly Modern Millie, 1776 and The Will Rogers Follies.
Lane, who piloted the Fats Waller revue Ain't Misbehavin' at the Vineyard Playhouse in Martha's Vineyard this summer, will stage the new musical by Douglas J. Cohen, The Gig, at the Lyric Theatre in Boston. Performances begins Oct. 18 and runs through Nov. 18. (The show has been seen regionally in developmental stagings.)
The cast includes Elizabeth Asti, Peter A. Carey, John Davin, Brian DeLorenzo, Benjamin Discipio, Paul Farwell, Peter Haydu, Chip Phillips, Brian Robinson and Kathy St. George. The musical director is Steven Bergman, the lighting designer is Russ Swift, and the costume designer is Gail Astrid Buckley.
The Gig is based on the 1985 movie of the same name about middle aged jazz musicians who gather to play a week-long engagement at a Catskills resort. The playwright Frank D. Gilroy (The Subject Was Roses) wrote and directed the movie.
Cohen's credits include No Way to Treat a Lady and Children's Letters to God. Lane started spreading his artistic wings a few years ago, when he directed the premiere of If It Was Easy..., a theatrical comedy he co-wrote with Ward Morehouse III. The show had a few regional stagings before opening and closing quickly Off Broadway in 2001. That comedy is being remounted at the Actors Theatre of Nantucket this summer. Performances end Aug. 18.
Lane jumped to Nantucket's neighboring island, Martha's Vineyard, to direct the Waller show. The revival began on July 11 and lasted until July 28.
The Lyric Stage Company is located at 140 Clarendon Street, Boston, MA. For more information, call (617) 437 7172.
—By Robert Simonson