"Like Father, Like Son": Chip Zien Is Mysterious Man for Into the Woods in Central Park; Casting Complete

By Adam Hetrick
25 Jun 2012

Chip Zien
Chip Zien

Chip Zien, who created the role of the Baker in the original 1987 Broadway production of Into the Woods, will take on the role of the Mysterious Man in The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park production of the musical.

In addition to Zien (Falsettos, The People in the Picture), new cast members include Sarah Stiles (Vanities) as Little Red Ridinghood, Kristine Zbornik (A Catered Affair) as Jack's Mother, Ellen Harvey (How to Succeed...) as Cinderella’s Stepmother, and Bethany Moore (Spider-Man) and Jennifer Rias (Rock of Ages) as the Stepsisters.

Late Tony Award-nominated actor Tom Aldredge originated the the role of The Mysterious Man and the Narrator in the original 1987 Broadway production of Into the Woods. For the Shakespeare in the Park production, young actor Jack Broderick will play the Narrator.

The outdoor staging of Into the Woods will incorporate elements from the 2010 Regent's Park Open Air Theatre London production. It will be staged by original director Timothy Sheader July 23-Aug. 25 at the Delacorte Theater and will officially open Aug. 9. The musical has a Tony-winning score by Stephen Sondheim and a Tony-winning book by James Lapine.



Into the Woods will also feature Tony Award winner Donna Murphy (Passion, Wonderful Town) as the Witch, Tony Award winner Denis O'Hare (Take Me Out, Assassins) as the Baker, Academy Award nominee Amy Adams ("Enchanted," "The Fighter") as the Baker's Wife and Tony nominee Jessie Mueller (On a Clear Day...) as Cinderella with Jack Broderick (Narrator), Gideon Glick (Jack), Cooper Grodin (Rapunzel's Prince), Ivan Hernandez (Cinderella's Prince/Wolf), Tina Johnson (Granny), Josh Lamon (Steward), Laura Shoop (Cinderella's Mother) and Tess Soltau (Rapunzel).

Into the Woods — a musical conflation of fairytale characters and stories, with a few original characters (including The Baker and The Baker's Wife) sprinkled among them — is directed by Sheader with co-direction by Liam Steel, recreating work previously seen in an outdoor staging in London.

Into the Woods features scenic design by John Lee Beatty and Soutra Gilmour; costume design by Emily Rebholz; movement direction by Liam Steel; sound design by Acme Sound Partners; orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick; and musical direction by Paul Gemignani.

Here's how The Public characterizes Into the Woods: "In Into the Woods, a witch's curse condemns the Baker and his Wife to a life without children. They embark on a quest to find the four items required to break the spell: the cow as white as milk, the cape as red as blood, the hair as yellow as corn, and the slipper as pure as gold. Will they succeed? And what happens after 'happily ever after?' A Tony Award-winning masterpiece by musical theatre giants Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine, Into the Woods is a witty and irreverent reimagining of beloved classic fairytales: Jack and the Beanstalk, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel and Cinderella."

Tickets to Shakespeare in the Park are free and are distributed, two per person, at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park the day of the show. The Public Theater will again offer free tickets through its Virtual Ticketing lottery at www.shakespeareinthepark.org on the day of the show.

The Delacorte Theater in Central Park is accessible by entering at 81st Street and Central Park West or at 79th Street and Fifth Avenue.