Onetime Broadway ingenue Susan Watson, remembered for playing the original Kim in Broadway's Bye Bye Birdie, will sing the role of Dolly Talbo in a revised version of the 1971 musical, The Grass Harp, for 42nd Street Moon in San Francisco.
The Truman Capote-inspired tuner opens Oct. 29 (previews began Oct. 27) and continues to Nov. 14 at the New Conservatory Theatre Center. This production, which features San Francisco cabaret star Meg Mackay (as an evangelist named Baby Love) has a new song and has been revised by its creators, lyricist-librettist Kenward Elmslie and composer Claibe Richardson. The pair restored a cut song, "Brazil," and added a new song, "The Dark Night of the Soul" (written especially for this "revisal").
Barbara Cook was the show's original star. The staging ran seven performances and seemed to confuse and/or frustrate critics with its story of a spinster, a group of misfits and a cure for dropsy.
Greg MacKellan directs, Brandon Adams musical directs.
The cast includes Jesse Caldwell, Joel Patterson, Lucinda Hitchcok-Cone, Amy Cole, Steve Patterson, Ed Simonick, Lily Katz and Roxanne Myshlewski. The 130-seat New Conservatory Theatre is at 25 Van Ness Ave. (at Market) in San Francisco. For 42nd Street Moon ticket information, call (415) 861 8972.
42nd Street Moon is one of several professional musical theatre concert series, including the Barbican Theatre's "Discover the Lost Musicals" in London and York Theatre's "Musicals in Mufti" and City Center's "Encores!" in New York City.
-- By Kenneth Jones