Goodbye for "Now": Olivier Nominee Alexander Hanson Departs Broadway's Night Music Sept. 26
By Andrew Gans
Alexander Hanson plays his final performance as Fredrik Egerman in the Broadway revival of Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler's A Little Night Music Sept. 26 at 3 PM at the Walter Kerr Theatre.
Hanson, who originated the role of Fredrik at the Menier Chocolate Factory and in the show's West End transfer — for which he was Olivier-nominated for Best Actor in a Musical — is departing the production to star in the upcoming West End revival of Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband.
Stephen R. Buntrock, who began as one of the waltzing "liebeslieders" in the Broadway revival of Night Music last fall, will step into the role of Fredrik beginning Sept. 28.
Buntrock, who was the Teen Angel in the recent Broadway revival of Grease, created the role of Mr. Lindquist in this production of A Little Night Music, understudying servant Frid and lawyer Fredrik. As the full-time Fredrik, he will woo two-time Tony Award winner Bernadette Peters' actress character, Desirée Armfeldt. The company also includes Tony and Emmy winner Elaine Stritch as Madame Armfeldt, Bradley Dean as Count Carl-Magnus Malcolm, Erin Davie as Countess Charlotte Malcolm, Leigh Ann Larkin as Petra, Hunter Ryan Herdlicka as Henrik Egerman and Ramona Mallory as Anne Egerman with Ron Bohmer, Ben Davis, Jessica Grové, Gina Lamparella, Katherine McNamara, Jayne Paterson, Kevin David Thomas, Keaton Whittaker, Karen Murphy, Erin Stewart and Kevin Vortmann.
Alexander Hanson's other West End leading roles include playing Captain Georg Von Trapp in The Sound of Music, Joe Gillis in Sunset Boulevard, the original production of Stoppard's Arcadia at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket and roles in The Merchant of Venice and Troilus and Cressida at the National Theatre. TV credits include "Six Characters in Search of an Author" (BBC) and "Auf Wiedersehn Pet" (BBC).
Read Playbill.com's earlier Leading Men interview with Hanson.
Buntrock's other Broadway credits include Curly in Oklahoma!, Gaston in Beauty and the Beast, St. John in the original cast of Jane Eyre, Barrett in Titanic and Enjolras in the tenth anniversary cast of Les Miserables. He also covered the role of The Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera. Buntrock has toured extensively across the United States and Canada as Reuben in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and as Arnaud du Thil in Cameron Mackintosh's production of Martin Guerre.
Trevor Nunn directed the hauntingly spare revival of A Little Night Music, which originated at London's Menier Chocolate Factory last year prior to arriving on Broadway Nov. 24, 2009. Night Music officially opened Dec. 13 at the Walter Kerr.
A Little Night Music, according to the producers, "is set in a weekend country house in turn of the century Sweden, bringing together surprising liaisons, long simmering passions and a taste of love's endless possibilities. Hailed as witty and wildly romantic, the story centers on the elegant actress Desirée Armfeldt and the spider's web of sensuality, intrigue and desire that surrounds her."
The creative team includes Lynne Page (choreography), Caroline Humphris (musical supervision), David Farley (set and costume design), Hartley T A Kemp (lighting design), Dan Moses Shreier and Gareth Owen (sound design), Paul Huntley (wig design), Jason Carr (orchestrations) and Rob Bowman (musical direction).
A Little Night Music — featuring a score by Sondheim and a book by Wheeler — originally opened at Broadway's Shubert Theatre on Feb. 25, 1973, with a cast that included Glynis Johns as Desiree, Len Cariou as Fredrik and Hermione Gingold as Madame Armfeldt. The show, directed by Harold Prince, garnered five 1973 Tony Awards, including one for Best Musical. The Sondheim score features the composer's best-known tune, "Send in the Clowns," as well as "Every Day a Little Death," "The Miller's Son" and "A Weekend in the Country."
A Little Night Music is produced on Broadway by Tom Viertel, Steven Baruch, Marc Routh, Richard Frankel, The Menier Chocolate Factory, Roger Berlind, David Babani, Sonia Friedman Productions, Andrew Fell, Daryl Roth/Jane Bergère, Harvey Weinstein/Raise the Roof 3, Beverly Bartner/Dancap Productions, Inc., Nica Burns/Max Weitzenhoffer, Eric Falkenstein/Anna Czekaj, Jerry Frankel/Ronald Frankel, James D. Stern/Douglas L. Meyer.
For more information, visit nightmusiconbroadway.com.
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