Over the past two decades, Tony-nominated playwright Ives has adapted 33 librettos for the Encores! series. His work began with Cole Porter's Out of This World, starring Andrea Martin , and concluded with the aforementioned Rodgers and Hart musical On Your Toes.
"Truth to tell, it was those really old shows that I liked the best," Ives told Playbill.com. " Strike Up The Band, Face The Music, Pardon My English, Of Thee I Sing, Boys From Syracuse — most of them shows nobody'd heard of in decades but which demonstrated, once the book had been cut and given a massage, some real verve. I love those shows that come from the days when a musical was a night out instead of a social lesson."
About his decision to end his work with the acclaimed concert series, Ives explained, "I've very happily done 33 adaptations for Encores! But there comes a time when it's time for someone else to have that pleasure, especially given how full my platter is these days. It's been a real joy and I would hate to run the risk of going stale, or shortchanging what is one of New York's most exciting theatre experiences. In short: it's time to pass along the blue pencil. I'll adapt."