Director Michael Greif brought success to the rock musical with Jonathan Larson's Rent. Now, the helmer is attempting the same with an "alterna-musical" as BETTY RULES comes to Off-Broadway at the Zipper Theatre. The production is set to begin previews Sept. 21 and open Oct. 15 for an open-ended run.
BETTY RULES is a book musical/performance piece which chronicles the real life ups and downs of the 17-year-old unsigned band — BETTY — fronted by Amy Ziff, Elizabeth Ziff and Alyson Palmer. The trio wrote and will perform the work which cautions "ex-boyfriends and girlfriends beware: all names have NOT been changed!" The show played at San Francisco's Magic Theatre last summer.
Following their first live gig in 1985, the band has played nationally and internationally at venues like Madison Square Garden, Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center. BETTY has released four of its albums on its label, The Man from B.E.T.T.Y.: "Hello BETTY!," "Kiss My Sticky," "Limboland" and "betty3." Their most recent release "Carnival" was put out by the internet label Stereo Society.
Greif will be busy this season as he has signed on to helm Suzan-Lori Parks' Fuckin' A for the Public Theater as well as return to New York Theatre Workshop — the original home of his staging of Rent — to helm Cavedweller. Other directorial credits include John Guare's A Few Stout Individuals, Monster and Dogeaters.
BETTY RULES features set and lighting design by Kevin Adams (Hedda Gabler, Sexaholix, An Almost Unholy Picture) with sound design by David Arnold (Uncle Vanya, The Best Man, The Laramie Project). The production is presented by Niclas Nagler, Mandy Greenfield and Mad Empire Theatricals. For tickets to BETTY RULES at the Zipper, 336 West 37th Street (between 8th and 9th Avenue) call Telecharge at (212) 239-6200. For more information, visit www.bettyrules.com.
— by Ernio Hernandez