Sarah Uriarte Berry, Ben Davis, Quentin Earl Darrington Will Walk Show Boat's Gangplank at Goodspeed

News   Sarah Uriarte Berry, Ben Davis, Quentin Earl Darrington Will Walk Show Boat's Gangplank at Goodspeed The passengers of Goodspeed Musicals' Show Boat, the groundbreaking 1927 musical getting fresh steam this summer at Goodspeed Opera House, will include Sarah Uriarte Berry as Magnolia, Quentin Earl Darrington as Joe, Ben Davis as Gaylord Ravenal and Lesli Margherita as Julie.

Sarah Uriarte Berry
Sarah Uriarte Berry

Director Rob Ruggiero's cast — bowing July 1 in East Haddam, CT — also includes Karen Murphy as Parthy, Lenny Wolpe and Capt. Andy, Andrea Frierson as Queenie, Danny Gardner as Frank, Jennifer Knox as Ellie and Maddie Berry as Kim.

Performances of the classic by composer Jerome Kern and lyricist-librettist Oscar Hammerstein II (based on the novel by Edna Ferber) will continue to Sept. 11. Opening night is July 27.

The famous story of showfolk who perform on a floating stage that docks in river towns along the Mississippi features the classic songs "You Are Love," "Make Believe," "Can't Help Lovin' That Man of Mine," "Why Do I Love You" and "Old Man River." The musical broke ground by introducing serious story elements — racism, miscegenation, spousal abandonment — into the genre of musical comedy. The work ambitiously covers about 40 years of American history, from 1890 to 1927.

Director Ruggiero recently staged High and Looped on Broadway, and previously staged 1776, Annie Get Your Gun and Camelot for Goodspeed. Noah Racey, the Broadway actor of Curtains and Never Gonna Dance, will choreograph.

 

Quentin Earl Darrington
photo by Aubrey Reuben

Berry appeared in Broadway's The Light in the Piazza, Taboo, Beauty and the Beast and Les Misérables; Davis' Broadway credits include A Little Night Music, Les Misérables, La Bohème and Thoroughly Modern Millie; Darrington was Coalhouse Walker Jr. in the 2009 revival of Ragtime; Margherita is an Olivier Award winner for Zorro in London; Wolpe starred in Broadway's Wicked and The Drowsy Chaperone; Frierson's Broadway credits include Marie Christine and The Lion King; Murphy is a Broadway veteran of 42nd Street, A Little Night Music and 9 to 5.

The ensemble will include Paule Aboite, Elizabeth Berg, Elise Kinnon, Denise Lute, A'Lisa Miles and Mollie Vogt-Welch, with Kyle E. Baird, Robert Hannon Davis, Robert Lance Mooney, Rob Richardson, Greg Roderick, Jet Thompson, David Toombs, Richard Waits and Nicholas Ward. The swings will be Adam Fenton Goddu and Christiana Rodi.

The creative team includes Michael Schweikardt (scenic designer), Amy Clark (costume designer), John Lasiter (lighting designer), Jay Hilton (sound designer), Michael O'Flaherty (music director), F. Wade Russo (assistant music director), Dan DeLange (orchestrations). Show Boat is produced for Goodspeed Musicals by Michael P. Price.

Show Boat was first staged on Broadway at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Dec. 27, 1927, and ran for 572 performances. It was produced by Florenz Ziegfeld and starred Norma Terris as Magnolia. (Goodspeed's second stage in Chester, CT, is named after Terris.) The show was remounted at the Casino Theatre on May 19, 1932, and ran for 180 performances. In 1946, a revival of Show Boat played the Ziegfeld Theatre for 418 performances; this script/score is the official and most-licensed version of the property.

Show Boat played 73 performances at Broadway’s Uris Theatre in 1983. A revised version of the musical, directed by Harold Prince, played the Gershwin Theatre starting in 1994. It played 947 performances and starred Elaine Stritch, Rebecca Luker and John McMartin, and spawned a national tour.

Tickets are available through the Box Office at (860) 873-8668 or at www.goodspeed.org.

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