Directed by Diane Paulus and conducted by David Charles Abell, this production utilizes the original 1948 orchestration by the late Robert Russell Bennett. The set, designed by Glimmerglass Opera's associate artistic director John Conklin, is modeled after the Globe Theatre.
Both veterans of the Broadway stage, Little and Vroman play Fred Graham and Lilli Vanessi, respectively. Little is best known for performing the title role in Phantom over 2,100 times in cities across the U.S. and Asia as well as on Broadway. Other regional and touring credits include leads in The Scarlet Pimpernel, Beauty and the Beast, Anything Goes and Jekyll & Hyde.
Vroman has starred as Christine on Broadway, tour, and in the long-running San Francisco production of Phantom of the Opera. The soprano, who made her Broadway debut in Aspects of Love, performed the role of Johanna in the San Francisco Symphony concert staging of Sweeney Todd that was taped for PBS and is available on DVD.
Also featured are David Larsen (Good Vibrations) as Bill Calhoun/Lucentio, Courtney Romano as Lois Lane/Bianca, Damian Norfleet as Paul, Michael Mott as First Gangster, Brad Nacht as Second Gangster, Martin C. Hurt as Harry Trevor/Baptista and T.K. Durham as Harrison Howell.
Kiss Me, Kate runs in repertory with three other Shakespeare-inspired works: Handel's Giulio Cesare in Egitto, Wagner's Das Liebesverbot and Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi. The Glimmerglass Opera 2008 Festival Season runs through Aug. 24. For tickets and more information visit glimmerglass.org or call (607) 547-2255.
Here is a look at the production currently playing the Alice Busch Opera Theater in Cooperstown, NY:
Photos by Cory Weaver for Glimmerglass Opera