The Light in the Piazza Dims in Chicago, Feb. 22; Is New York Next?

News   The Light in the Piazza Dims in Chicago, Feb. 22; Is New York Next? Adam Guettel and Craig Lucas' new musical The Light in the Piazza ends its run at the Goodman Theatre, Feb. 22 following an extension and positive response, stirring buzz about a New York staging.

Victoria Clark in The Light in the Piazza
Victoria Clark in The Light in the Piazza Photo by Chris Bennion

The Chicago run, directed by Bartlett Sher, began Jan. 10 and opened Jan. 20 for a run originally slated to end Feb. 15.

Original stars Victoria Clark, Patti Cohenour, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Mark Harelik, Kelli O'Hara and Glenn Seven Allen — who starred in the world premiere of the musical at Seattle's Intiman Theatre — reprise their roles with newcomers Wayne Wilcox, Amy Arbizzani, Andrew Rothenberg, Stephen Rader, Brooke Scherrod and Jonathan Raviv.

The Light in the Piazza is a love story of a young American woman who while on holiday falls for a young Italian man. When the young woman's mother learns of the affair, she opposes it for seemingly unknown reasons. Based on the 1960 novella by Elizabeth Spencer, the musical is set in Florence and Rome in the summer of 1953.

The musical has been visited by a number of New York producers, including not-for profit theatres, and is expected to tread the New York boards in the near future. Show spokespersons state that no decision will be made about an NYC run until after the show's run in Chicago.

The world premiere of The Light in the Piazza, featuring music and lyrics by Guettel (Floyd Collins) and book by Lucas (The Dying Gaul, Prelude to a Kiss), played last year in Seattle. The developing work was previously workshopped at the Sundance Theatre Lab. Some restructuring took place for the developing show since the Seattle staging. "The heart of it is still there," lead Victoria Clark told Playbill On-Line. (The actress has been with the show since its early stages.) "The core of the piece is still very much the same. It's definitely still the same story."

The design team includes Michael Yeargan (set), Chris Akerlind (light) Catherine Zuber (costume) and Acme Sound Partners (sound). Ted Sperling serves as music director. Choreography is by Marcela Lorca.

The Light in the Piazza played at the Goodman home located at 170 N. Dearborn in Chicago, IL. For more information, visit www.goodman-theatre.org.

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