Patti Cohenour Basks in the Spotlight in the Piazza Through Aug. 21

News   Patti Cohenour Basks in the Spotlight in the Piazza Through Aug. 21 Patti Cohenour, the actress who usually plays Senora Naccerelli in Adam Guettel and Craig Lucas' The Light in the Piazza at Lincoln Center Theater, will essay the leading role of Margaret Johnson through the week ending Aug. 21.

Cohenour is filling in for the vacationing Victoria Clark, who won a Tony for her work as the vacationing American woman whose daughter finds love in Florence.

The musical marks Cohenour's LCT debut. Her Broadway credits include A Doll’s Life, Big River, The Mystery of Edwin Drood (also London), The Phantom of the Opera (also Canada), The Sound of Music. Other work includes Sweet Adeline (Encores!), Show Boat (Toronto), La Bohème and Pirates of Penzance (NYSF). She appeared in The Light in the Piazza at the Goodman and Intiman theatres. She was Tony Award nominated for Drood.

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It was recently reported that Aaron Lazar and Chris Sarandon will be the new Naccerelli son and father in The Light in the Piazza.

Aaron Lazar succeeds Matthew Morrison, who will leave the production to take a role in A Naked Girl on the Appian Way at the Roundabout Theatre Company. Lazar begins work on Sept. 2. Sarandon follows on Sept. 13. Lazar has worked on Broadway in Oklahoma! and The Phantom of the Opera. Sarandon hasn't been on Broadway since 1991's Nick and Nora. (Joanna Gleason, that show's Nora, is Sarandon's wife.) The actor is better known for his films, which include "The Princess Bride," "Dog Day Afternoon," and "Just Cause," and television roles on "Felicity" and "Judging Amy."

As Fabrizio, Lazar will speak and sing much of his role in Italian, including the number "Il Mondo Era Vuoto," in which he emotionally professes his love for Kelli O'Hara's American Clara without uttering a single English word, outside of "Clara" and "Van Johnson."

Morrison received a Tony nomination for his performance.

Piazza took home six Tony Awards on June 5, and has extended its run at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theater through the end of the year. The show, which opened on April 18 after a month of previews, will now play until Jan. 1, 2006. It was to have closed on June 12.

The Light in the Piazza is a love story of a young American woman, Clara (Kelli O'Hara), who, while on holiday, falls for a young Italian man. When the young woman's mother (Victoria Clark) learns of the affair, she initially opposes it for unknown reasons. The musical is set in Florence and Rome in the summer of 1953.

The creative team includes Ted Sperling (musical direction), Michael Yeargan (sets), Catherine Zuber (costumes) and Christopher Akerlind (lights).

Piazza is based on Elizabeth Spencer's 1960 novella.