Can it be nearly a decade since Once On This Island was playing on Broadway? Well, the show opened at the Booth Theatre Oct. 18, 1990 and ran for more than a year, receiving eight Tony nominations, including musical, book and score.
Now Casa Manana, in Fort Worth, TX, revives the musical fable, based on a tale by Hans Christian Anderson, as transformed into the Rosa Guy novel, "My Love, My Love." In Island, peasant girl Ti Moune rescues a rich but vain boy, with whom she falls in love. Little does she know what sacrifices she'll have to make in the days to come. The Caribbean inflected score features such songs as "Some Girls," "Ti Moune," "We Dance," and "Mama Will Provide."
Starring in the Texas production are Brandi Chavonne Massey and Brandon Singleton, alongside Liz Mikel, Akin Babatunde, General McArthur Hambrick [sic], Tanesha Marie Gary, Patrick Amos, April Armstrong, Denise Lee, Markus Lloyd and Cristina Dominique McAlister. Joel Ferrell directs, with Lyn Cramer choreographing the staging, which runs June 15-27.
The rest of the Casa Manana season will also be musical, with a stop from the national touring company of Chicago (July 13-25); the Jones Schmidt take on The Four Poster, I Do! I Do!; and the Strouse Charnin classic, Annie. Venues vary for the productions. For a season subscription, call the Casa Manana ticket office at (817) 332-2272. Single tickets go on sale March 29, 1999.
-- By David Lefkowitz