When the World Trade Center collapsed on Sept. 11, the Vineyard Theatre saw little reason to continue its party plans for the Oct. 1 gala, You Gotta Have Hart, a celebration of opera and theatre performer Kitty Carlisle Hart's life and career, at that time. Nov. 26, however, the Off Broadway company will step out to honor the singer and wife of deceased Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright-director Moss Hart. Legendary performer Julie Andrews, New York Governor George E. Pataki and Roy Neuberger will co-chair the event.
Yearly, the newly-formed Kitty Carlisle Hart Music Theatre Lab will award a commission to a musical theatre artist for the creation and development of a new musical at the Vineyard Theatre. The fund will also support workshops and full productions of musicals.
2001 Obie winner Judy Kuhn (Eli Comin'), 2001 Tony Award winner Christine Ebersole (42nd Street), Howard McGillin (The Phantom of the Opera and Geoffrey Nauffts will perform various selections from Hart's career as well as numbers from the Vineyard's past musical productions. Eli's Comin', created from the hits of Laura Nyro, was a recent hit for the company, who has produced Polly Pen's Bed & Sofa, Christina Alberta's Father and Goblin Market, Ricky Ian Gordan and Tina Landau's Dream True and Lanie Robertson's Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill.
Tickets are $250-$1000. "You Gott Have Hart" will be performed at the Gramercy Theatre with dinner to follow at 200 Fifth Avenue. For reservations, call (212) 353-3366, ext. 228. The Vineyard Theatre is on the web at http://www.vineyardtheatre.org.
— By Christine Ehren