San Francisco’s 42nd Street Moon continues its fifth season of concert stagings of classic musicals with High Spirits, the 1964 musicalization of Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit, Aug. 6 -24.
Subtitled “The Composer and Lyricist Festival,” 42nd Street Moon’s Lost Musical Series is much like "Encores!" in NY, "Reprise" in LA and "Discover" in London.
High Spirits has a score by Timothy Grey and Hugh Martin, songs include "I Know Your Heart," "Something Tells Me" and "Forever And A Day." Greg MacKellan directs this comic tale of a deceased woman haunting her husbandand his new wife. Lesley Hamilton plays the new wife and Stephanie Rhoads is the ghost wife, with Joseph Lustig as their husband. Winifred Freedman plays Madame Arcati, an eccentric medium who proves to be a catalyst to the disastrous unfoldings. Musical direction is by Michael Horsley.
When it first opened in New York in 1964, High Spirits starred Edward Woodward, Beatrice Lillie, Tammy Grimes and Louise Troy.
The season continues with 1954's Fanny -- the first show David Merrick ever produced -- telling the story of a French girl who, assuming her lover to be lost at sea, marries an older man. Harold Rome wrote the score for this S.N. Behrman and Josh Logan musical based on three plays by Marcel Pagnol. Running Sept. 3-21, Fanny features such songs as "Panisse And Son," "To My Wife," and "Welcome Home." Barbara Heroux directs. Porter returns Oct. 29-Nov. 16 with Jubilee, which was the first 42nd Street Moon revival five years ago. A zany 1935 look at British royalty, Jubilee features such songs as "Me & Marie," "Why Shouldn't I" and "A Picture Of Me Without You." Jubilee will be directed by Greg MacKellan.
Moon co-founders Greg MacKellan and Stephanie Rhoads received a special Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award in 1996 for the company's work. For tickets ($15.50-$18.50; $90 subscriptions) and information on 42nd Street Moon's 1997 Lost Musical Series," subtitled "The Composer And Lyricist Festival," call (415) 861-8972. Performances are Wednesdays - Fridays at 8 PM, Saturday at 6 PM and Sunday at 2 PM at the New Conservatory Theatre Centre.