Remember My Name: Fame Begins Off-Bway Run Oct. 7

By Kenneth Jones
07 Oct 2003

(l-r) Peter Reardon, Cheryl Freeman, Nancy Hess and Gannon McHale as the teachers in Fame on 42nd Street.
(l-r) Peter Reardon, Cheryl Freeman, Nancy Hess and Gannon McHale as the teachers in Fame on 42nd Street.
Photo by Carol Rosegg.

The kids who are "gonna live forever," as the song from "Fame" goes, live again Oct. 7 in the New York City debut of the stage version of the 1980 backstage movie musical.

Now branded as Fame on 42nd Street, this is an Off-Broadway variation of the property that has been popular in North American tours and international productions. Drew Scott Harris directs a book by José Fernandez, music by Steve Margoshes and lyrics by Jacques Levy. The movie's title song, by Dean Pitchford and Michael Gore, is also part of the mix, celebrating the eager spirit of the teen-age characters who attend the High School of Performing Arts in New York City.

Fame plays the Little Shubert Theatre on West 42nd Street. Opening is set for Nov. 11.

Conceived and developed by David De Silva, Fame is set in the 1980s and concerns the lives of up and coming performing artists attending New York's High School for the Performing Arts.

The company includes Jenna Coker as Grace "Lambchops" Lamb, a drummer; Emily Corney as Iris Kelly, a classically trained dancer; Shakiem Evans as Tyrone Jackson, a street dancer; Christopher J. Hanke as Nick Piazza, an actor; Nancy Hess as Ms. Greta Bell, the dance teacher; Michael Kary as Goodman "Goody King," a trumpet player; Nicole Leach as Carmen Diaz, a dancer; Gannon McHale as Mr. Sheinkopf, the music teacher; Dennis Moench as Schlomo Metzenbaum, a violinist; Peter Reardon as Mr. Myers, the drama teacher; José Restrepo as José "Joe" Vegas, an actor; Sara Schmidt as Serena Katz, an actress; Q. Smith as Mabel Washington, a dancer; and Cheryl Freeman as Miss Esther Sherman, the English/homeroom teacher.



The ensemble comprises Angela Brydon, Alexis Carra, Ryan Christopher Chotto, David Finch, David Garcia, Jesse Nager, Jennifer Parsinen, Dawn Noel Pignuola, Eduardo Rioseco, Enrico Rodriguez, Danita Salamida and Erika Weber.

Eric Barnes is music director. Choreography is by Lars Bethke, who served as director-choreographer of the previous Equity tour of the show. The creative team also includes Norbert Kolb (sets), Ken Billington (lights), Paul Tazwell (costumes) and Christopher "Kit" Bond (sound). Casting is by Stuart Howard & Associates.

Fame is being produced Off-Broadway by Richard Martini, Allen Spivak and Dodger Stage Holding by arrangement with The Father Fame Foundation.

Tickets — priced $65-$75 — for Fame on 42nd Street are currently on sale by calling (212) 239-6200. The performance schedule at the Little Shubert (422 West 42nd Street) will be Tuesdays at 7 PM, Wednesday Saturday evenings at 8 PM with matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2 PM and Sundays at 3 PM. For more information, visit www.fameon42.com.

Student rush tickets are available day of performance, for $25 cash only, in person at the Little Shubert box office. Rush tickets will be on sale two hours prior to the performance, subject to availability.

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This stage version of Fame has become an international sensation; a new 44-week non-Equity tour produced by Phoenix Theatricals began Sept. 5 in Toledo, Ohio, under the direction of Bill Castellino. Licensing is handled by Music Theatre International.