Cast Announced for Broadway's In the Heights

By Kenneth Jones
06 Jan 2008

Mandy Gonzales and Christopher Jackson will return to In the Heights.
Mandy Gonzales and Christopher Jackson will return to In the Heights.
Photo by Joan Marcus

Full casting has been announced for the Broadway production of In the Heights, the new musical about life in New York City's culturally diverse neighborhood of Washington Heights.

Most members of the earlier Off-Broadway tryout cast — which included Tony Award winner Priscilla Lopez — will reunite for the Broadway run.

As previously announced, Lin-Manuel Miranda, who conceived the show and wrote its hip-hop-infused music and lyrics, will again star as Dominican bodega operator Usnavi — our guide into the urban world of lovers and dreamers whose roots are in island nations of the West Indies or the Caribbean.

The cast includes holdovers (like Miranda) from the 2007 Off-Broadway engagement, plus newcomers. Rewrites and refinements are expected to be a part of the new production, which is again directed by Thomas Kail and choreographed by Andy Blankenbuehler. Pulitzer Prize finalist Quiara Alegria Hudes penned the original libretto.



Also appearing in the production — starting previews Feb. 14 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre — will be Andréa Burns (as neighborhood salon owner Daniela), Janet Dacal (as salon worker Carla), Robin De Jesús (as Usnavi's cousin, Sonny), Carlos Gomez (as taxi and limo service owner Kevin, Nina's dad), Mandy Gonzalez (as law student and love interest Nina), Christopher Jackson (as limo dispatcher Benny), Priscilla Lopez (as Camila, the limo service co-owner who is Nina's mother), Olga Merediz (as Abuela), Karen Olivo (as shampoo girl and love interest Vanessa) and Seth Stewart (as Grafitti Pete). The cast of 27 also features Tony Chiroldes, Rosie Lani Fiedelman, Joshua Henry, Afra Hines, Nina Lafarga, Doreen Montalvo, Javier Muñoz, Krysta Rodriguez, Eliseo Roman, Luis Salgado, Shaun Taylor-Corbett, Rickey Tripp, Michael Balderrama, Blanca Camacho, Rogelio Douglas Jr. and Stephanie Klemons.

Opening is March 9. Tickets are on sale now.

Miranda won ASCAP's 2007 Richard Rodgers New Horizons Award, and Kail and Blankenbuehler won Joseph A. Callaway Awards from the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers for their work on In the Heights. Blankenbuehler also snagged Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel awards for his choreography.

The Off-Broadway troupers of the show's earlier incarnation won the 2007 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance.

Alex Lacamoire is music director, and music arrangements are by Alex Lacamoire and Bill Sherman. The creative team includes scenic designer Anna Louizos, costume designer Paul Tazewell, lighting designer Howell Binkley and sound by Acme Sound Partners.

On Broadway In the Heights will be produced by Kevin McCollum, Jeffrey Seller, Jill Furman, Sander Jacobs, Robyn Goodman/Walt Grossman, Peter Fine and Sonny Everett/Mike Skipper with associate producers Ruth Hendel and Harold Newman.

According to the producers, "In the Heights is a quintessential New York musical about a vibrant and tight-knit community at the top of the island of Manhattan. The music pulses with the hopes and dreams of three generations as they struggle to forge an identity in a neighborhood on the brink of transition."

Tickets for In the Heights are on sale now and range from $21.50 to $111.50, and can be purchased at the Richard Rodgers box office or at www.ticketmaster.com.

The playing schedule for In the Heights follows: Tuesday-Saturday at 8 PM, Sunday at 7 PM, with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2 PM. There will be added performances March 17 at 8 PM, and matinees March 5, March 12, March 19 and March 26 all at 2 PM.

There will be no performance on March 9 at 2 PM, March 12 at 8 PM, March 23 at 2 PM and 7 PM, and March 30 at 7 PM.

For more information, visit www.intheheightsthemusical.com.

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The Off-Broadway engagement of the show, which ran February-July 2007 at 37 Arts, earned the following awards:

2007 Lucille Lortel Award
Outstanding Musical
Outstanding Choreographer, Andy Blankenbuehler

2007 Clarence Derwent Award
Lin-Manuel Miranda

2007 Drama Desk Award
Outstanding Ensemble Performance

2007 HOLA Award
Outstanding Achievement in a Musical Production, Kevin McCollum, Jeffrey Seller, Jill Fuller
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor, Lin-Manuel Miranda
Outstanding Performance by a Featured Female Actor, Olga Merediz
Outstanding Achievement in Playwrighting, Lin-Manuel Miranda

2007 Outer Critics Circle Awards
Outstanding Choreography, Andy Blankenbuehler
Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical

2007 Theatre World Award
Lin-Manuel Miranda

2007 Obie Award
Music and Lyrics, Lin-Manuel Miranda

2007 Drama Desk Awards
Outstanding Choreography, Andy Blankenbuehler
Outstanding Ensemble Performance

2007 SSDC Joseph A. Callaway Award
Director, Thomas Kail
Choreographer, Andy Blankenbuehler