New Kushner Operas Brundibšr and Comedy on the Bridge to Feature Stars From Taboo and Wicked

Classic Arts News   New Kushner Operas Brundibšr and Comedy on the Bridge to Feature Stars From Taboo and Wicked
 
Euan Morton—who starred as Boy George in the Broadway musical Taboo—will play the title role in Tony Kushner and Maurice Sendak's New York-bound operas Brundibšr and Comedy on the Bridge.

Tony Taccone (bridge & tunnel) directs the co-production between Berkeley Repertory Theatre and Yale Repertory Theatre. The work will debut in California (November 11-December 28) then play the New Haven, Connecticut venue (February 10-March 5, 2006) prior to its New York run at the New Victory Theater (April 26-May 21).

Morton originated the role of Boy George in the pop star's musical Taboo for its London debut and reprised his performance on Broadway. He will star in Brundibšr as the sinister organ-grinder opposite youngsters Aaron Simon Gross (A Stoop on Orchard Street) and Devynn Pedell (The People Garden) as Pepicek and Aninku, respectively, the brother and sister who try singing in town to help their ailing mother. Geoff Hoyle (The Lion King, Mr. Fox) also appears as the Baker and the Dog.

William Youmans—who played Doctor Dillamond in Broadway's Wicked—stars in Comedy on the Bridge, which is about a group trapped between two opposing armies on a bridge. He appears with Anjali Bhimani (Bombay Dreams, Metamorphoses), Hank DiGiovanni (17 Reasons Why, Dreamlandia), Matt Farnsworth (Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Who's Tommy), Angelina Rešux (Wall to Wall Sondheim), Martin Vidnovic (Brigadoon, Here Lies Jenny) fill the many roles which include a young couple, a businessman and his wife, and a baffled schoolmaster.

"Both shows are a testament to the creative power of human beings," according to Kushner, "even in dark times, to turn ugliness into music." Actors will appear in both works of the approximately 95-minute, intermissionless production that will also features a chorus of 29 local school children.

Kushner and Sendak—who created the namesake 2003 children's picture book—reteam on the one-act opera take on Brundibšr and the duo's other adaptation Comedy on the Bridge, which feature libretti by Kushner adapted from Adolf Hoffmeister and Vaclava Klimenta Klicpery, music by Hans Krasa and Bohuslav Martinu with production design by Sendak ("Where the Wild Things Are").

The design team assembled to create the magical storybook universe also includes Kris Stone (scenic), Robin I. Shane (costume), Don Holder (lighting), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (sound). Valerie Gebert serves as musical director and conductor.

Tickets are available through each venue as follows:

  • Berkeley Rep's Roda Theatre, 2015 Addison Street in Berkeley, CA - (510) 647 2949, toll-free (888) 4-BRT-Tix or online at www.berkeleyrep.org
  • Yale Rep's University Theatre, 222 York Street in New Haven, CT - (203) 432-1234 or at www.yalerep.org
  • New Victory Theater, 209 West 42nd Street in New York, NY - (646) 223-3020 or www.newvictory.org


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