Inspired by the early life of writer Carl Reiner, who is among the producers of the Broadway-aimed production, Enter Laughing was seen in an extended run at the York Theatre Off-Broadway in 2008. It has a book by Stein (Fiddler on the Roof, Zorba) with music and lyrics by Daniels ("Taxi").
Grisetti (Broadway Bound), who originated the role of aspiring actor David Kolowitz, reprises his performance alongside Jill Eikenberry (Into the Woods, "L.A. Law") and Michael Tucker ("L.A. Law") as Mother and Father, respectively. They are joined by Richard Kind (Bounce!, The Producers) as Marlowe and Kate Shindle (Wonderland, Legally Blonde) as Angela.
Completing the cast are Gina Milo, Erick Devine, Eric Mann, Paul Binotto, Gerry McIntyre, Betsy DiLello, Emily Shoolin, Ray DeMattis and Phil Reno, many of whom also appeared in the 2008 York engagement.
Off-Broadway director Stuart Ross again directs and choreograph the production that runs through Sept. 4. "The production comes to Bay Street Theatre before continuing on its journey to Broadway," according to producers.
The production has scenic design by James Morgan, costume design by David Toser, lighting design by Ken Billington and sound design by Tony Melfa. Morgan and Toser also designed the Off-Broadway engagement.
The 1930's-set musical "tells the story of young, hapless David Kolowitz, a shop boy from the Bronx who pursues his dream of becoming a leading man on stage while facing mounting pressures from his despondent girlfriend, dismissive boss, distracted best friend, disgusted acting coach and disapproving parents," according to Bay Street.
Enter Laughing is presented at Bay Street by special arrangement with Dan Whitten and Tiger Theatricals in association with Reiner. In 2009 Whitten announced plans to bring Enter Laughing to Broadway as part of the 2010-2011 season. The musical was first seen on Broadway in a short-lived 1976 run with the title So Long, 174th Street. Stein and Daniels had revised the work since its premiere.
Anyone who buys a ticket for Aug. 9-12 preview performances can return to see the show during the last week of the run for just $10. Tickets can be purchased by calling (631) 725-9500 or by visiting BayStreet.
Bay Street Theatre is a not-for-profit institution "presenting new, classic and contemporary works with a commitment to challenging and entertaining our diverse community."