Hasty Pudding Joins Producing Team of Heathers; Cast to Perform at Pudding Gala at Lincoln Center

By Michael Gioia
and Adam Hetrick
07 Mar 2014

Barrett Wilbert Weed
Barrett Wilbert Weed

The producers of Heathers: The Musical, the new stage adaptation of Daniel Waters' 1989 dark comedy film, announced March 7 that The Hasty Pudding Institute of 1770 will make their first foray into producing a New York stage production with Heathers.

Their newest initiative, Hasty Pudding Presents, is a production arm whose mission is to "develop the Hasty Pudding franchise by backing performing arts endeavors consistent with its unique 200-year-old brand."

The Hasty Pudding Institute comprises The Hasty Pudding Club, The Hasty Pudding Theatricals and the Harvard Krokodiloes. Laurence O'Keefe, co-author and producer of Heathers, is an alumni of The Hasty Pudding.

The cast of Heathers will perform during the Pudding's Order of the Golden Sphinx Gala, honoring producer David Heyman, March 10 at Jazz at Lincoln Center's Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York City. The evening's additional performances are written and composed by O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin.



"Everything I do for a living I learned by performing, writing and composing with the Pudding and the Krokodiloes, so getting a chance to partner with them again is a thrilling homecoming," said O'Keefe in a statement. "There's nowhere on Earth like the Pudding. It's not just a professional incubator for young artists and a theater company that's been making audiences cheer for decades; it's a family that teaches everyone it meets how to approach life with laughter and music. Heathers continues the Pudding's greatest traditions: speaking out loud, singing louder, and kicking as high as you can. So I'm over the moon that the Pudding and Heathers are taking this step together. I am positively cross-dressing with anticipation."

Tony Award-nominated Legally Blonde composer O'Keefe collaborated with Emmy-winning Reefer Madness author Kevin Murphy on book, music and lyrics for the musical. Andy Fickman ("Reefer Madness," "She's the Man") directs the production that will begin performances March 15, prior to an official opening March 31, at New World Stages.

Several cast members from the sold-out 2013 Los Angeles premiere will return for the Off-Broadway engagement, including Barrett Wilbert Weed (Lysistrata Jones, Bare) as Veronica, Ryan McCartan ("Liv and Maddie") as JD and Elle McLemore (Bring It On: The Musical, "Army Wives") as Heather McNamara.

The cast will also feature Jessica Keenan Wynn (Les Misérables) as Heather Chandler and Alice Lee (Spring Awakening, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark) as Heather Duke, with Katie Ladner as Martha Dunnstock, Jon Eidson as Ram Sweeney, Evan Todd as Kurt Kelly, Tony winner Crivello (Kiss of the Spider Woman, Golden Boy) as Ram's Dad/Big Bud Dean, Dan Cooney (Mamma Mia!, 9 to 5) as Kurt's Dad/Veronica’s Dad/Principal and Michelle Duffy (Leap of Faith) as Ms. Fleming/Veronica's Mom.

The ensemble includes Dan Domenech, Cait Fairbanks, Rachel Flynn, Molly Hager, Charissa Hogeland, AJ Meijer and Dustin Sullivan.

Heathers will have set design by Timothy R. Mackabee, costume design by Amy Clark, lighting design by Jason Lyons, sound design by Jonny Massena and music direction by Dominick Amendum. Choreography is by Marguerite Derricks.

Here's how it's billed: "September, 1989. Westerberg High is terrorized by a shoulder-padded, scrunchie-wearing junta: Heather, Heather and Heather, the hottest and cruelest girls in all of Ohio. But misfit Veronica Sawyer rejects their evil regime for a new boyfriend, the dark sexy stranger J.D., who plans to put the Heathers in their place - six feet under. Deliciously, darkly funny, romantic and moving, Heathers: The Musical is a truthful, uplifting parable for anyone who’s ever been in love, in trouble, or in high school."

Heathers is produced Off-Broadway by Hasty Pudding Institute, Bruce Bendell, Jamie Bendell, Scott Benson, Andy Cohen, J. Todd Harris, Amy Powers, Scott Prisand and Big Block Theatrical. Creators Fickman, Murphy and O’Keefe are also producers, along with executive producer Denise Di Novi.

Tickets are now on sale via Telecharge.com.