By Andrew Gans
and Kenneth Jones
23 Nov 2008
|Photo by Diane Sobolewski|
Performances will begin at the Booth, currently the home of the limited engagement of Dividing the Estate, Feb. 3, 2009, with an official opening Feb. 19.
As in the recent Goodspeed Musicals developmental run of the show in Connecticut, quirky bookstore owner Alvin Kelby will be played by Malcolm Gets and best-selling writer Thomas Weaver will be played by Will Chase. Tony Award winner Richard Maltby Jr. (Ain't Misbehavin', Fosse, Ring of Fire) will direct.
In a statement actor Gets said, "We live in a time when people need something that is fun and authentic. That is exactly what this musical is. It's a universal story about friendship. It's about the important things in our lives - relationships with people. This musical does not have a high-tech set. Instead it relies on two actors, great music and one hell of a show."
Co-star Chase added, "This is a play about family relationships, true friendship and reconnecting with the simplest and purest qualities in our lives. Doing this production has really affected my life. It's the first time in my career that I have done a production that inspires me to call my friends and family after the curtain call."
The creative team includes scenic designer Robert Brill, costume designer Wade Laboissonniere, lighting designer Ken Billington, sound designer Carl Casella and orchestrator Jonathan Tunick.
Here's how a recent casting notice characterized The Story of My Life: It "tells the story of Thomas Weaver, a successful writer who returns to his hometown...[and is] unable to find the appropriate words to celebrate his friend's life, Thomas pages through the story of their lives together, from their unconventional introduction to their ultimate estrangement, in search of his role in his friend's untimely death."
The show follows the characters from age six to 35.
Gets' Broadway credits include The Moliere Comedies, Amour (Tony nomination as Best Actor in a Musical) and concerts of Passion and Dreamgirls. Gets may be best known to audiences as Richard on the television comedy "Caroline in the City."
Chase's Broadway credits include High Fidelity, Aida, The Full Monty, Rent and Miss Saigon. He was Roger in the final Broadway company of Rent, which was recently captured on film for a "cinecast" presentation.
Bartram is the recipient of a Dramatists Guild Jonathan Larson Fellowship, a Jonathan Larson Foundation Award, and was a finalist for the 2007 Fred Ebb Award. He wrote the music and lyrics for The Nightingale and the Rose and Somewhere in the World, which ran for five seasons at the Charlottetown Festival in Canada.
Hill is currently associate director of Disney's The Little Mermaid on Broadway and served as resident director of The Lion King for six years.
The Story of My Life was seen in the National Alliance for Musical Theatre's Festival of New Musicals in fall 2007. For more information about the collaborators, visit bartramandhill.com.
The Broadway production will be produced by Chase Mishkin and Jack M. Dalgleish in association with Bud Martin.
Show times on Broadway will be Tuesday-Saturday at 8 PM, Wednesday and Saturday at 2 PM and Sunday at 3 PM.
Tickets, priced $66.50-$110, are available by calling (212) 239-6200 or by visiting www.telecharge.com.